H J a 5:1-22. Captivity in Philistia. b 6:1. Duration. Seven months. K 6:2-16. Removal to Beth-shemesh. L 6:17,18. Lords of Philistines. K 6:19,20. Judgment at Beth-shemesh. J a 6:21–7:1. Captivity of Ark ended. b 7:2. Duration. 20 years.
a c¹ 1. From Eben-ezer to Ashdod. d¹ 2-6. Judgment on Ashdodites. c² 7,8. From Ashdod to Gath. d² 9. Judgment on Gadites. c³ 10-. From Gath to Ekron. d³ -10-12. Judgment on Ekronites.
1 Samuel 5)
1: And the Philistines took the ark of God (you will see in this chapter that God is quite capable of taking care of what is His. He doesn't need any help from man), and brought it from Eben-ezer to Ashdod (= fortified. Now Esdud. Cp. Josh. 13:3. See Gen. 10:14).
2: When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon (= great fish. This is the same word as used when God greated the great fish to swallow Jonah), and set it by Dagon.
3: And when they of Ashdod arose early on the next day and entered into the house of Dagon, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the earth before the ark of the Lord (God was speaking to the heathens. EVERYONE will bow down to Yehovah). And they took Dagon, and set him in his place again.
4: And when they arose early on the next morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the ground before the ark of the Lord; and the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands were cut off upon the threshold; only the stump of Dagon was left to him (the hands and feet being gone, only Dagon [the fish part] remained).
5: Therefore neither the priests of Dagon, nor any that come into Dagon's house, tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod to this day.
6: But the hand of the Lord was heavy upon them of Ashdod (Fig., put for the judgments inflicted by it), and He destroyed them, and smote them with hemorrhoids (see Deut.28:27), even Ashdod and the coasts thereof.
7: And when the men of Ashdod saw that it was so, they said, “The ark of the God of Israel shall not abide with us: for His hand is sore upon us, and upon Dagon our god.”
8: They sent therefore and gathered all the princes of the Philistines to them (see Josh. 13:3), and said, “What shall we do with the ark of the God) of Israel?” And they answered, “Let the ark of the God of Israel be carried about to Gath.” (= a wine-press) And they carried the ark of the God of Israel about to that place.
9: And it was so, that, after they had carried it about, the hand of the Lord was against the city with a very great destruction: and He smote the men of the city, both small and great, and they had hemorrhoids in their secret parts.
10: Therefore they sent the ark of God to Ekron (= torn up by the roots; emigration).
And it came to pass, as the ark of God came to Ekron, that the Ekronites cried out, saying, “They have brought about the ark of the God of Israel to us, to slay us and our people.”
11: So they sent and gathered together all the princes of the Philistines, and said, “Send away the ark of the God of Israel, and let it go again to his own place, that it slay us not, and our people:” for there was a deadly destruction throughout all the city; the hand of God was very heavy there.
12: And the men that died not were smitten with the hemorrhoids: and the cry of the city went up to heaven.