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1 Samuel 4:10-22

Context

4:10 So the Philistines fought. Israel was defeated; they all ran home. 1  The slaughter was very great; thirty thousand foot soldiers fell in battle. 4:11 The ark of God was taken, and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phineas, were killed.

Eli Dies

4:12 On that day 2  a Benjaminite ran from the battle lines and came to Shiloh. His clothes were torn and dirt was on his head. 4:13 When he arrived in Shiloh, Eli was sitting in his chair watching by the side of 3  the road, for he was very worried 4  about the ark of God. As the man entered the city to give his report, 5  the whole city cried out.

4:14 When Eli heard the outcry, 6  he said, “What is this commotion?” 7  The man quickly came and told Eli. 4:15 Now Eli was ninety-eight years old and his eyes looked straight ahead; 8  he was unable to see.

4:16 The man said to Eli, “I am the one who came from the battle lines! Just today I fled from the battle lines!” Eli 9  asked, “How did things go, my son?” 4:17 The messenger replied, “Israel has fled from 10  the Philistines! The army has suffered a great defeat! Your two sons, Hophni and Phineas, are dead! The ark of God has been captured!”

4:18 When he mentioned the ark of God, Eli 11  fell backward from his chair beside the gate. He broke his neck and died, for he 12  was old and heavy. He had judged Israel for forty years.

4:19 His daughter-in-law, the wife of Phineas, was pregnant and close to giving birth. When she heard that the ark of God was captured and that her father-in-law and her husband were dead, she doubled over and gave birth. But her labor pains were too much for her. 4:20 As she was dying, the women who were there with her said, “Don’t be afraid! You have given birth to a son!” But she did not reply or pay any attention. 13 

4:21 She named the boy Ichabod, 14  saying, “The glory has departed from Israel,” referring to the capture of the ark of God and the deaths of her father-in-law and her husband. 4:22 She said, “The glory has departed from Israel, because the ark of God has been captured.”

1 tn Heb “and they fled, each to his tents.”

2 tn Or perhaps, “the same day.” On this use of the demonstrative pronoun see Joüon 2:532 §143.f.

3 tc Read with many medieval Hebrew mss, the Qere, and much versional evidence יַד (yad, “hand”) rather than MT יַךְ (yakh).

4 tn Heb “his heart was trembling.”

5 tn Heb “and the man came to report in the city.”

6 tn Heb “the sound of the cry.”

7 tn Heb “the sound of this commotion.”

8 tn Heb “were set” or “were fixed,” i.e., without vision.

9 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Eli) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

10 tn Heb “before.”

11 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Eli) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

12 tn Heb “the man.”

13 tn Heb “and she did not set her heart.”

14 sn The name Ichabod (אִי־כָבוֹד) may mean, “Where is the glory?”



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