1The Philistines had captured the ark of God. They took it from Ebenezer to Ashdod.2They carried the ark into the temple of their god Dagon. They set it down beside the statue of Dagon.3The people of Ashdod got up early the next day. They saw the statue of Dagon. There it was, lying on the ground! It had fallen on its face in front of the ark of the LORD. So they picked up the statue of Dagon. They put it back in its place.4But the following morning when they got up, they saw the statue of Dagon. There it was, lying on the ground again! It had fallen on its face in front of the ark of the LORD. Its head and hands had been broken off. Only the body of the statue was left. Its head and hands were lying in the doorway of the temple.5That’s why to this day no one steps on the bottom part of the doorway of Dagon’s temple at Ashdod. Not even the priests of Dagon step there.6The LORD’s power was against the people of Ashdod and the settlements near it. He destroyed them. He made them suffer with growths in their bodies.7The people of Ashdod saw what was happening. They said, ‘The ark of the god of Israel must not stay here with us. His power is against us and against our god Dagon.’8So they called together all the rulers of the Philistines. They asked them, ‘What should we do with the ark of the god of Israel?’ The rulers answered, ‘Let the ark be moved to Gath.’ So they moved it.9But after the people of Ashdod had moved the ark, the LORD’s power was against Gath. That threw its people into a great panic. The LORD made them break out with growths in their bodies. It happened to young people and old people alike.10So the ark of God was sent to Ekron. As the ark was entering Ekron, the people of the city cried out. They shouted, ‘They’ve brought the ark of the god of Israel to us. They want to kill us and our people.’11So they called together all the rulers of the Philistines. They said, ‘Send the ark of the god of Israel away. Let it go back to its own place. If you don’t, it will kill us and our people.’ The death of so many people had filled the city with panic. God’s power was against the city.12Those who didn’t die suffered with growths in their bodies. The people of Ekron cried out to heaven for help.
1 Samuel 5
English Standard Version
The Philistines and the Ark
1When the Philistines captured the ark of God, they brought it from Ebenezer to Ashdod. (Jos 13:3; 1Sa 4:1; 1Sa 7:12)2Then the Philistines took the ark of God and brought it into the house of Dagon and set it up beside Dagon. (Jud 16:23)3And when the people of Ashdod rose early the next day, behold, Dagon had fallen face downward on the ground before the ark of the Lord. So they took Dagon and put him back in his place. (Isa 46:1)4But when they rose early on the next morning, behold, Dagon had fallen face downward on the ground before the ark of the Lord, and the head of Dagon and both his hands were lying cut off on the threshold. Only the trunk of Dagon was left to him. (Jer 50:2; Eze 6:4; Eze 6:6; Mic 1:7)5This is why the priests of Dagon and all who enter the house of Dagon do not tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod to this day. (Zep 1:9)6The hand of the Lord was heavy against the people of Ashdod, and he terrified and afflicted them with tumors, both Ashdod and its territory. (Ex 9:3; 1Sa 6:5; Ps 32:4; Ac 13:11)7And when the men of Ashdod saw how things were, they said, “The ark of the God of Israel must not remain with us, for his hand is hard against us and against Dagon our god.”8So they sent and gathered together all the lords of the Philistines and said, “What shall we do with the ark of the God of Israel?” They answered, “Let the ark of the God of Israel be brought around to Gath.” So they brought the ark of the God of Israel there. (Jos 13:3)9But after they had brought it around, the hand of the Lord was against the city, causing a very great panic, and he afflicted the men of the city, both young and old, so that tumors broke out on them. (De 2:15; 1Sa 5:6; 1Sa 7:13; 1Sa 12:15)10So they sent the ark of God to Ekron. But as soon as the ark of God came to Ekron, the people of Ekron cried out, “They have brought around to us the ark of the God of Israel to kill us and our people.”11They sent therefore and gathered together all the lords of the Philistines and said, “Send away the ark of the God of Israel, and let it return to its own place, that it may not kill us and our people.” For there was a deathly panic throughout the whole city. The hand of God was very heavy there. (1Sa 5:6; 1Sa 5:8)12The men who did not die were struck with tumors, and the cry of the city went up to heaven. (1Sa 5:6)