1
¶ AND the Philistines took the ark God, and brought it from the Rock of Help to Ashdod.
2
Then the Philistines took the ark of God, and brought it into the house of Dagon and set it by the side of Dagon.
3
And when the inhabitants of Ashdod arose early the next morning, they found Dagon was fallen upon his face on the ground before the ark of the LORD.
And they took Dagon and set him in his place again.
4
And when they arose early the next morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face on the ground before the ark of the LORD;
and the head of Dagon and both of his hands were cut off upon the threshold;
only the trunk of Dagon was left.
5
Therefore neither the priests of Dagon nor any that enter Dagon’s house cross the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod to this day.
6
¶ But the hand of the LORD was heavy upon the inhabitants of Ashdod, and he destroyed them and afflicted them with boils, both Ashdod and the territory thereof.
7
And when the men of Ashdod saw that it was so, they said, The ark of the God of Israel shall not stay with us;
for his hand is heavy upon us and upon Dagon our god.
8
They sent therefore and gathered all the lords of the Philistines to them, 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 returned to Gath.
So they took back the ark of the God of Israel there.
9
And after they took it back, 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 were covered with boils.
10
Therefore they sent the ark of God to Ekron.
And when the ark of God came to Ekron, the Ekronites cried out, saying, They have brought the ark of the God of Israel to us, to slay us and our people.
11
So they sent 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 slay us and our people.
For the fear of death caused a panic that spread throughout all the city;
the hand of God was very heavy there.
12
And the men who did not die were smitten with the boils;
and the cry of the city went up to heaven.