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Judges 16; Judges 17; Judges 18 (Douay-Rheims)

1 He went also into Gaza, and saw there a woman, a harlot, and went in unto her. 2 And when the Philistines had heard this, and it was noised about among them, that Samson was come into the city, they surrounded him, setting guards at the gate of the city, and watching there all the night in silence, that in the morning they might kill him as he went out. 3 But Samson slept till midnight, and then rising, he took both the doors of the gate, with the posts thereof and the bolt, and laying them on his shoulders, carried them up to the top of the hill, which looketh towards Hebron. 4 After this he loved a woman, who dwelt in the valley of Sorec, and she was called Dalila. 5 And the princes of the Philistines came to her, and sald: Deceive him, and learn of him wherein his great strength lieth, and how we may be able to overcome him, to bind and afflict him: which if thou shalt do, we will give thee every one of us eleven hundred pieces of silver. 6 And Dalila said to Samson: Tell me, I beseech thee, wherein thy greatest strength lieth, and what it is, wherewith if thou wert bound, thou couldst not break loose. 7 And Samson answered her: If I shall be bound with seven cords, made of sinews not yet dry, but still moist, I shall be weak like other men. 8 And the princes of the Philistines brought unto her seven cords, such as he spoke of, with which she bound him; 9 Men lying privately in wait with her, and in the chamber, expecting the event of the thing, and she cried out to him: The Philistines are upon thee, Samson. And he broke the bands, as a man would break a thread of tow twined with spittle, when it smelleth the fire: so it was not known wherein his strength lay. 10 And Dalila said to him: Behold thou hast mocked me, and hast told me a false thing: but now at least tell me wherewith thou mayest be bound. 11 And he answered her: If I shall be bound with new ropes, that were never in work, I shall be weak and like other men. 12 Dalila bound him again with these, and cried out: The Philistines are upon thee, Samson, there being an ambush prepared for him in the chamber. But he broke the bands like threads of webs. 13 And Dalila said to him again: How long dost thou deceive me, and tell me lies? Shew me wherewith thou mayest be bound. And Samson answered her: If thou plattest the seven locks of my head with a lace, and tying them round about a nail, fastenest it in the ground, I shall be weak. 14 And when Dalila had done this, she said to him: The Philistines are upon thee, Samson. And awaking out of his sleep, he drew out the nail with the hairs and the lace. 15 And Dalila said to him: How dost thou say thou lovest me, when thy mind is not with me? Thou hast told me lies these three times, and wouldst not tell me wherein thy greatest strength lieth. 16 And when she pressed him much, and continually hung upon him for many days, giving him no time to rest, his soul fainted away, and was wearied even unto death. 17 Then opening the truth of the thing, he said to her: The razor hath never come upon my head, for I am a Nazarite, that is to say, consecrated to God from my mother’s womb: If my head be shaven, my strength shall depart from me, and I shall become weak, and shall be like other men. 18 Then seeing that he had discovered to her all his mind, she sent to the princes of the Philistines, saying: Come up this once more, for now he hath opened his heart to me. And they went up, taking with them the money which they had promised. 19 But she made him sleep upon her knees, and lay his head in her bosom. And she called a barber and shaved his seven locks, and began to drive him away, and thrust him from her: for immediately his strength departed from him. 20 And she said: The Philistines are upon thee, Samson. And awaking from sleep, he said in his mind: I will go out as I did before, and shake myself, not knowing that the Lord was departed from him. 21 Then the Philistines seized upon him, and forthwith pulled out his eyes, and led him bound in chains to Gaza, and shutting him up in prison made him grind. 22 And now his hair began to grow again, 23 And the princes of the Philistines assembled together, to offer great sacrifices to Dagon their god, and to make merry, saying: Our god hath delivered our enemy Samson into our hands. 24 And the people also seeing this, praised their god, and said the same: Our god hath delivered our adversary into our hands, him that destroyed our country, and killed very many. 25 And rejoicing in their feasts, when they had now taken their good cheer, they commanded that Samson should be called, and should play before them. And being brought out of prison, he played before them; and they made him stand between two pillars. 26 And he said to the lad that guided his steps: Suffer me to touch the pillars which support the whole house, and let me lean upon them, and rest a little. 27 Now the house was full of men and women, and all the princes of the Philistines were there. Moreover about three thousand persons of both sexes, from the roof and the higher part of the house, were beholding Samson’s play. 28 But he called upon the Lord, saying: O Lord God remember me, and restore to me now my former strength, O my God, that I may revenge myself on my enemies, and for the loss of my two eyes I may take one revenge. 29 And laying hold on both the pillars on which the house rested, and holding the one with his right hand, and the other with his left, 30 He said: Let me die with the Philistines. And when he had strongly shook the pillars, the house fell upon all the princes, and the rest of the multitude, that was there: and he killed many more at his death, than he had killed before in his life. 31 And his brethren and all his kindred, going down took his body, and buried it between Saraa and Esthaol, in the buryingplace of his father Manue: and he judged Israel twenty years. 1 There was at that time a man of mount Ephraim, whose name was Michas. 2 Who said to his mother: The eleven hundred pieces of silver, which thou hadst put aside for thyself, and concerning which thou didst swear in my hearing, behold I have, and they are with me. And she said to him. Blessed be my son by the Lord. 3 So he restored them to his mother, who said to him: I have consecrated and vowed this silver to the Lord, that my son may receive it at my hand, and make a graven and a molten god; so now I deliver it to thee. 4 And he restored them to his mother: and she took two hundred pieces of silver and gave them to the silversmith, to make of them a graven and a molten God, which was in the house of Michas. 5 And he separated also therein a little temple for the god, and made an ephod, and theraphim, that is to say, a priestly garment, and idols: and he filled the hand of one of his sons, and he became his priest. 6 In those days there was no king in Israel, but every one did that which seemed right to himself. 7 There was also another young man of Bethlehem Juda, of the kindred thereof: and he was a Levite, and dwelt there. 8 Now he went out from the city of Bethlehem, and desired to sojourn wheresoever he should find it convenient for him. And when he was come to mount Ephraim, as he was on his journey, and had turned aside a little into the house of Michas, 9 He was asked by him whence he came. And he answered: I am a Levite of Bethlehem Juda, and I am going to dwell where I can, and where I shall find a place to my advantage. 10 And Michas said: Stay with me, and be unto me a father and a priest, and I will give thee every year ten pieces of silver, and a double suit of apparel, and thy victuals. 11 He was content, and abode with the man, and was unto him as one of his sons. 12 And Michas filled his hand, and had the young man with him for his priest, saying: 13 Now I know God will do me good, since I have a priest of the race of the Levites. 1 In those days there was no king in Israel, and the tribe of Dan sought them an inheritance to dwell in: for unto that day they had not received their lot among the other tribes. 2 So the children of Dan sent five most valiant men, of their stock and family, from Saraa and Esthaol, to spy out the land, and to view it diligently: and they said to them: Go, and view the land. They went on their way, and when they came to mount Ephraim, they went into the house of Michas, and rested there: 3 And knowing the voice of the young man the Levite, and lodging with him, they said to him: Who brought thee hither? what dost thou here? why wouldst thou come hither? 4 He answered them: Michas hath done such and such things for me, and hath hired me to be his priest. 5 Then they desired him to consult the Lord, that they might know whether their journey should be prosperous, and the thing should have effect. 6 He answered them: Go in peace: the Lord looketh on your way, and the journey that you go. 7 So the five men going on came to Lais: and they saw how the people dwelt therein without any fear, according to the custom of the Sidonians, secure and easy, having no man at all to oppose them, being very rich, and living separated, at a distance from Sidon and from all men. 8 And they returned to their brethren in Saraa and Esthaol, who asked them what they had done: to whom they answered: 9 Arise, and let us go up to them: for we have seen the land which is exceeding rich and fruitful: neglect not, lose no time: let us go and possess it, there will be no difficulty. 10 We shall come to a people that is secure, into a spacious country, and the Lord will deliver the place to us, in which there is no want of any thing that groweth on the earth. 11 There went therefore of the kindred of Dan, to wit, from Saraa and Esthaol, six hundred men, furnished with arms for war. 12 And going up they lodged in Cariathiarim of Juda: which place from that time is called the camp of Dan, and is behind Cariathiarim. 13 From thence they passed into mount Ephraim. And when they were come to the house of Michas, 14 The five men, that before had been sent to view the land of Lais, said to the rest of their brethren: You know that in these houses there is an ephod and theraphim, and a graven and a molten god: see what you are pleased to do. 15 And when they had turned a little aside, they went into the house of the young man the Levite, who was in the house of Michas: and they saluted him with words of peace. 16 And the six hundred men stood before the door, appointed with their arms. 17 But they that were gone into the house of the young man, went about to take away the graven god, and the ephod, and the theraphim, and the molten god, and the priest stood before the door, the six hundred valiant men waiting not far off. 18 So they that were gone in took away the graven thing, the ephod, and the idols, and the molten god, And the priest said to them: What are you doing? 19 And they said to him: Hold thy peace, and put thy finger on thy mouth, and come with us, that we may have thee for a father, and a priest. Whether is better for thee, to be a priest in the house of one man, or in a tribe and family in Israel? 20 When he heard this, he agreed to their words, and took the ephod, and the idols, and the graven god, and departed with them. 21 And when they were going forward, and had put before them the children and the cattle, and all that was valuable, 22 And were now at a distance from the house of Michas, the men that dwelt in the houses of Michas gathering together followed them, 23 And began to shout out after them. They looked back, and said to Michas: What aileth thee? Why dost thou cry? 24 And he answered: You have taken away my gods which I have made me, and the priest, and all that I have, and do you say: What aileth thee? 25 And the children of Dan said to him: See thou say no more to us, lest men enraged come upon thee, and thou perish with all thy house. 26 And so they went on the journey they had begun. But Michas seeing that they were stronger than he, returned to his house. 27 And the six hundred men took the priest, and the things we spoke of before, and came to Lais, to a people that was quiet and secure, and smote them with the edge of the sword: and the city they burnt with fire, 28 There being no man at all who brought them any succour, because they dwelt far from Sidon, and had no society or business with any man. And the city was in the land of Rohob: and they rebuilt it, and dwelt therein, 29 Calling the name of the city Dan, after the name of their father, who was the son of Israel, which before was called Lais. 30 And they set up to themselves the graven idol, and Jonathan the son of Gersam, the son of Moses, he and his sons were priests in the tribe of Dan, until the day of their captivity. 31 And the idol of Michas remained with them all the time that the house of God was in Silo. In those days there was no king in Israel.
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