1 Samuel 4:10

10 So the Philistines fought; Israel was defeated, and they fled, everyone to his home. There was a very great slaughter, for there fell of Israel thirty thousand foot soldiers.

1 Samuel 4:10 Meaning and Commentary

1 Samuel 4:10

And the Philistines fought
With great ardour and spirit, quitted themselves like men of valour and courage, their case being desperate as they imagined, since God was in the camp of Israel:

and Israel was smitten:
were routed and beaten:

and they fled every man into his tent;
such of them as escaped the sword of the Philistines fled to their own houses in the several cities from whence they came; so the Targum,

``every man to his city''

so that their army was quite broken up:

and there was a very great slaughter
far greater than in the first battle:

For there fell of Israel thirty thousand footmen;
their army chiefly, if not altogether, consisting of footmen, there being few horses in Israel; and if any cavalry now, these may be supposed to flee; before they lost only 4000, now 30,000; so that the ark was no security to them, which was suffered, to show their vain trust and confidence in it.

1 Samuel 4:10 In-Context

8 Woe to us! Who can deliver us from the power of these mighty gods? These are the gods who struck the Egyptians with every sort of plague in the wilderness.
9 Take courage, and be men, O Philistines, in order not to become slaves to the Hebrews as they have been to you; be men and fight."
10 So the Philistines fought; Israel was defeated, and they fled, everyone to his home. There was a very great slaughter, for there fell of Israel thirty thousand foot soldiers.
11 The ark of God was captured; and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, died.
12 A man of Benjamin ran from the battle line, and came to Shiloh the same day, with his clothes torn and with earth upon his head.