1 Samuel 6

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Basic English Bible         

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1 Now the ark of the Lord was in the country of the Philistines for seven months.

2 And the Philistines sent for the priests and those who were wise in secret arts, and said to them, What are we to do with the ark of the Lord? How are we to send it away to its place?

3 And they said, If you send away the ark of the God of Israel, do not send it without an offering, but send him a sin-offering with it: then you will have peace again, and it will be clear to you why the weight of his hand has not been lifted from you.

4 Then they said, What sin-offering are we to send to him? And they said, Five gold images of the growths caused by your disease and Five gold mice, one for every lord of the Philistines: for the same disease came on you and on your lords.

5 So make images of the growths caused by your disease and of the mice which are damaging your land; and give glory to the God of Israel: it may be that the weight of his hand will be lifted from you and from your gods and from your land.

6 Why do you make your hearts hard, like the hearts of Pharaoh and the Egyptians? When he had made sport of them, did they not let the people go, and they went away?

7 So now, take and make ready a new cart, and two cows which have never come under the yoke, and have the cows yoked to the cart, and take their young ones away from them:

8 And put the ark of the Lord on the cart, and the gold images which you are sending as a sin-offering in a chest by its side; and send it away so that it may go.

9 If it goes by the land of Israel to Beth-shemesh, then this great evil is his work; but if not, then we may be certain that the evil was not his doing, but was the working of chance.

10 And the men did so; they took two cows, yoking them to the cart and shutting up their young ones in their living-place:

11 And they put the ark of the Lord on the cart and the chest with the gold images.

12 And the cows took the straight way, by the road to Beth-shemesh; they went by the highway, not turning to the right or to the left, and the sound of their voices was clear on the road; and the lords of the Philistines went after them as far as the edge of Beth-shemesh.

13 And the people of Beth-shemesh were cutting their grain in the valley, and lifting up their eyes they saw the ark and were full of joy when they saw it.

14 And the cart came into the field of Joshua the Beth-shemite, and came to a stop there by a great stone: and cutting up the wood of the cart they made a burned offering of the cows to the Lord.

15 Then the Levites took down the ark of the Lord and the chest in which were the gold images, and put them on the great stone: and the men of Beth-shemesh made burned offerings and gave worship that day before the Lord.

16 And the five lords of the Philistines, having seen it, went back to Ekron the same day.

17 Now these are the gold images which the Philistines sent as a sin-offering to the Lord; one for Ashdod, one for Gaza, one for Ashkelon, one for Gath, one for Ekron;

18 And the gold mice, one for every town of the Philistines, the property of the five lords, walled towns as well as country places: and the great stone where they put the ark of the Lord is still in the field of Joshua the Beth-shemite to this day.

19 But the Lord sent destruction on seventy men of the people of Beth-shemesh for looking into the ark of the Lord; and great was the sorrow of the people for the destruction which the Lord had sent on them.

20 And the men of Beth-shemesh said, Who is able to keep his place before the Lord, this holy God? and to whom may he go from us?

21 And they sent men to the people living in Kiriath-jearim, saying, The Philistines have sent back the ark of the Lord; come and take it up to your country.

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Exploring the Meaning of 1_Samuel 6      

The Philistines were desperate to get rid of the stolen Ark of the Covenant. They had suffered plagues, and the statue of their god, Dagon, had fallen. Seven months after they had taken the Ark, the priests and diviners of the Philistines advised that it should be returned to the Lord “Jehovah” in Israel’s territory, accompanied by a suitable “trespass offering”. This would be an admission of guilt.

It was decided that the offering should be five gold tumors, or hemorrhoids, and five gold mice - representing the two afflictions that had plagued their people, and the five cities of the Philistines. They built a special cart to carry the Ark and the trespass offering, and two young milk cows pulled it. The cows were set free to find their own route, and headed straight for Israelite territory. The Israelite people in the border town of Beth Shemesh saw the cart coming, and rejoiced. They used a large stone as an altar, split up the wood of the cart and offered the two cows as a sacrifice. The golden objects were then distributed through the land.

In Divine Providence 326, we get an explanation of the meaning of the symbols in this chapter:

The hemorrhoids that plagued the Philistines in 1 Samuel 5 represent earthly loves separated from spiritual ones. The golden hemorrhoids represent earthly loves that have been purified, and made good.

The mice represent distortions of the truth which destroy the church. The golden mice represent the repair of the destruction via good loves and actions.

The cart that carried the ark and the trespass offerings symbolizes a new teaching, and the cows that led it symbolize “good earthly feelings.” The cows lowed as they led the cart. Swedenborg writes of this story that we must turn the obsessions that our earthly self holds with evil into good desires, and that the lowing of the cows as they drew the cart away represents how difficult this is. The sacrifice of the cows when they reached their destination indicates that the Lord was appeased. (See Divine Providence 326)

These symbols reveal something about our relationship with God, and the importance of uniting faith and charity, good and truth, within ourselves. The Philistines represent a spiritual state with faith separate from charity, and this chapter tells us that in order to reunite our faith with charity we must turn our loves of evil into the desire to do good with our knowledge.

The end of the chapter tells that the people of Beth Shemesh, who received the Ark of the Covenant, made a fatal mistake: some of them looked into the Ark. As a consequence, 50,070 of their people died. They sent a message to the people of Kirjath Jearim, asking them to come down and take the Ark from them.

The primary message here is the power of the Lord’s Ten Commandments. In the book True Christian Religion, we are taught that there was tremendous holiness and power in the law written on the stone tablets, because it was a “summary of the whole of religion.” The two engraved tablets represent the link between us and God. One of them contains a synopsis of all things related to God, and the other, a synopsis of all things related to us (see True Christian Religion 285 286). If we are to ever trespass the commandments or treat them as less than holy, harm will surely come. Therefore, we must work with the Lord in order to acquire an appropriate reverence for His commandments. This needs to go together with an active and sincere effort to obey them to the best of our frail and limited human ability.

Swedenborg

Hlavní výklad ze Swedenborgových prací:

Apocalypse Explained 700

Apocalypse Revealed 529

Divine Providence 326


Další odkazy Swedenborga k této kapitole:

Arcana Coelestia 5945

Doctrine of Life 59

Doctrine of Faith 52

True Christian Religion 284, 595, 691


Odkazy ze Swedenborgových nevydaných prací:

Apocalypse Explained 827

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Významy biblických slov

ark
There are three arks mentioned in the Word, the ark of Noah, the ark of bulrushes for the baby Moses, and the ark of the...

the Lord
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lord
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philistines
The Philistines play a large role in the Bible as one of the longest-standing and most bitter rivals of the people of Israel, clashing with...

seven
The number 'seven' was considered holy, as is well known, because of the six days of creation, and the seventh, which is the celestial self,...

months
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sent
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priests
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said
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send
'To send' signifies revealing.

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hand
In Genesis 27:22, 'voice' relates to truth, and 'hand,' to good.

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‘To grow’ signifies to be perfected.

five
Five also signifies all things of one part.

gold
Gold means good, and just as gold was the most precious metal known to ancient mankind so it represents the good of the highest and...

images
'Images' denote things fashioned from man’s own intelligence.

mice
'Mice,' as in 1 Samuel 6:1-21, signify the falsities of the sensory human.

one
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When the Bible speaks of "Jehovah," it is representing love itself, the inmost love that is the essence of the Lord. That divine love is...

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cows
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chest
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side
'Side' signifies good or spiritual love.

goes
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great
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way
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after
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came
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stone
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wood
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down
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day
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seen
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back
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gaza
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gath
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