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1 Samuel Chapter 5 | Parsha:

1When the Philistines captured the Ark of God, they brought it from Eben-ezer to Ashdod. 2The Philistines took the Ark of God and brought it into the temple of Dagon and they set it up beside Dagon. 3Early the next day, the Ashdodites found Dagon lying face down on the ground in front of the Ark of the Lord. They picked Dagon up and put him back in his place; 4but early the next morning, Dagon was again lying prone on the ground in front of the Ark of the Lord. The head and both hands of Dagon were cut off, lying on the threshold; only Dagon’s trunk was left intact. 5That is why, to this day, the priests of Dagon and all who enter the temple of Dagon do not tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod.

6The hand of the Lord lay heavy upon the Ashdodites, and He wrought havoc among them: He struck Ashdod and its territory with hemorrhoids. 7When the men of Ashdod saw how matters stood, they said, “The Ark of the God of Israel must not remain with us, for His hand has dealt harshly with us and with our god Dagon.” 8They sent messengers and assembled all the lords of the Philistines and asked, “What shall we do with the Ark of the God of Israel?” They answered, “Let the Ark of the God of Israel be removed to Gath.” So they moved the Ark of the God of Israel [to Gath]. 9And after they had moved it, the hand of the Lord came against the city, causing great panic; He struck the people of the city, young and old, so that hemorrhoids broke out among them. 10Then they sent the Ark of God to Ekron. But when the Ark of God came to Ekron, the Ekronites cried out, “They have moved the Ark of the God of Israel to us to slay us and our kindred.” 11They too sent messengers and assembled all the lords of the Philistines and said, “Send the Ark of the God of Israel away, and let it return to its own place, that it may not slay us and our kindred.” For the panic of death pervaded the whole city, so heavily had the hand of God fallen there; 12and the men who did not die were stricken with hemorrhoids. The outcry of the city went up to heaven.

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