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1 Samuel 4:12-18

Eli Dies

4:12 On that day 1  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 2  the road, for he was very worried 3  about the ark of God. As the man entered the city to give his report, 4  the whole city cried out.

4:14 When Eli heard the outcry, 5  he said, “What is this commotion?” 6  The man quickly came and told Eli. 4:15 Now Eli was ninety-eight years old and his eyes looked straight ahead; 7  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 8  asked, “How did things go, my son?” 4:17 The messenger replied, “Israel has fled from 9  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 10  fell backward from his chair beside the gate. He broke his neck and died, for he 11  was old and heavy. He had judged Israel for forty years.

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

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

3 tn Heb “his heart was trembling.”

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

5 tn Heb “the sound of the cry.”

6 tn Heb “the sound of this commotion.”

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

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

9 tn Heb “before.”

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

11 tn Heb “the man.”

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