I - Chapter 6

1The Aron of Hashem remained in the territory of the Philistines seven months.

אוַיְהִי אֲרוֹן־יְהֹוָה בִּשְׂדֵה פְלִשְׁתִּים שִׁבְעָה חֳדָשִׁים׃

2Then the Philistines summoned the priests and the diviners and asked, “What shall we do about the Aron of Hashem? Tell us with what we shall send it off to its own place.”

בוַיִּקְרְאוּ פְלִשְׁתִּים לַכֹּהֲנִים וְלַקֹּסְמִים לֵאמֹר מַה־נַּעֲשֶׂה לַאֲרוֹן יְהֹוָה הוֹדִעֻנוּ בַּמֶּה נְשַׁלְּחֶנּוּ לִמְקוֹמוֹ׃

3They answered, “If you are going to send the Aron of the God of Yisrael away, do not send it away without anything; you must also pay an indemnity to Him. Then you will be healed, and He will make Himself known to you; otherwise His hand will not turn away from you.”

גוַיֹּאמְרוּ אִם־מְשַׁלְּחִים אֶת־אֲרוֹן אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל אַל־תְּשַׁלְּחוּ אֹתוֹ רֵיקָם כִּי־הָשֵׁב תָּשִׁיבוּ לוֹ אָשָׁם אָז תֵּרָפְאוּ וְנוֹדַע לָכֶם לָמָּה לֹא־תָסוּר יָדוֹ מִכֶּם׃

4They asked, “What is the indemnity that we should pay to Him?” They answered, “Five golden hemorrhoids and five golden mice, corresponding to the number of lords of the Philistines; for the same plague struck all of you and your lords.

דוַיֹּאמְרוּ מָה הָאָשָׁם אֲשֶׁר נָשִׁיב לוֹ וַיֹּאמְרוּ מִסְפַּר סַרְנֵי פְלִשְׁתִּים חֲמִשָּׁה עפלי [טְחֹרֵי] זָהָב וַחֲמִשָּׁה עַכְבְּרֵי זָהָב כִּי־מַגֵּפָה אַחַת לְכֻלָּם וּלְסַרְנֵיכֶם׃

5You shall make figures of your hemorrhoids and of the mice that are ravaging your land; thus you shall honor the God of Yisrael, and perhaps He will lighten the weight of His hand upon you and your gods and your land.

הוַעֲשִׂיתֶם צַלְמֵי עפליכם [טְחֹרֵיכֶם] וְצַלְמֵי עַכְבְּרֵיכֶם הַמַּשְׁחִיתִם אֶת־הָאָרֶץ וּנְתַתֶּם לֵאלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל כָּבוֹד אוּלַי יָקֵל אֶת־יָדוֹ מֵעֲלֵיכֶם וּמֵעַל אֱלֹהֵיכֶם וּמֵעַל אַרְצְכֶם׃

6Don't harden your hearts as the Egyptians and Pharaoh hardened their hearts. As you know, when He made a mockery of them, they had to let Yisrael go, and they departed.

ווְלָמָּה תְכַבְּדוּ אֶת־לְבַבְכֶם כַּאֲשֶׁר כִּבְּדוּ מִצְרַיִם וּפַרְעֹה אֶת־לִבָּם הֲלוֹא כַּאֲשֶׁר הִתְעַלֵּל בָּהֶם וַיְשַׁלְּחוּם וַיֵּלֵכוּ׃

7Therefore, get a new cart ready and two milch cows that have not borne a yoke; harness the cows to the cart, but take back indoors the calves that follow them.

זוְעַתָּה קְחוּ וַעֲשׂוּ עֲגָלָה חֲדָשָׁה אֶחָת וּשְׁתֵּי פָרוֹת עָלוֹת אֲשֶׁר לֹא־עָלָה עֲלֵיהֶם עֹל וַאֲסַרְתֶּם אֶת־הַפָּרוֹת בָּעֲגָלָה וַהֲשֵׁיבֹתֶם בְּנֵיהֶם מֵאַחֲרֵיהֶם הַבָּיְתָה׃

8Take the Aron of Hashem and place it on the cart; and put next to it in a chest the gold objects you are paying Him as indemnity. Send it off, and let it go its own way.

חוּלְקַחְתֶּם אֶת־אֲרוֹן יְהֹוָה וּנְתַתֶּם אֹתוֹ אֶל־הָעֲגָלָה וְאֵת כְּלֵי הַזָּהָב אֲשֶׁר הֲשֵׁבֹתֶם לוֹ אָשָׁם תָּשִׂימוּ בָאַרְגַּז מִצִּדּוֹ וְשִׁלַּחְתֶּם אֹתוֹ וְהָלָךְ׃

9Then watch: If it goes up the road to Beit Shemesh, to His own territory, it was He who has inflicted this great harm on us. But if not, we shall know that it was not His hand that struck us; it just happened to us by chance.”

ur-ee-TEM im DE-rekh g'-vu-LO ya-a-LEH BAYT SHE-mesh HU A-sah LA-nu et ha-ra-AH ha-g'-do-LAH ha-ZOT v'-im LO v'-ya-DA-nu KEE LO ya-DO na-g'-AH BA-nu mik-REH HU HA-yah LA-nu

טוּרְאִיתֶם אִם־דֶּרֶךְ גְּבוּלוֹ יַעֲלֶה בֵּית שֶׁמֶשׁ הוּא עָשָׂה לָנוּ אֶת־הָרָעָה הַגְּדוֹלָה הַזֹּאת וְאִם־לֹא וְיָדַעְנוּ כִּי לֹא יָדוֹ נָגְעָה בָּנוּ מִקְרֶה הוּא הָיָה לָנוּ׃

 6:9   To Beit Shemesh

Growing city of Beit Shemesh

Beit Shemesh, west of Yerushalayim, is in the territory of Yehuda (Joshua 15) and is one of the cities set aside for the Leviim. In 1948, the area was significant in the fighting between Arabs and Jews. It was from this area that thirty-five fighters set off to try to rescue the besieged Jewish communities in Gush Etzion. They were discovered and massacred by Arabs before completing their mission. Shortly after the War of Independence, a new Jewish community was built in Beit Shemesh. It was first settled by immigrants from Iran, Iraq and Morocco, and later by a large Russian and Ethiopian population. In more recent years, many North American Jews have made their home in the biblical city of Beit Shemesh.

10The men did so. They took two milch cows and harnessed them to the cart, and shut up their calves indoors.

יוַיַּעֲשׂוּ הָאֲנָשִׁים כֵּן וַיִּקְחוּ שְׁתֵּי פָרוֹת עָלוֹת וַיַּאַסְרוּם בָּעֲגָלָה וְאֶת־בְּנֵיהֶם כָּלוּ בַבָּיִת׃

11They placed the Aron of Hashem on the cart together with the chest, the golden mice, and the figures of their hemorrhoids.

יאוַיָּשִׂמוּ אֶת־אֲרוֹן יְהֹוָה אֶל־הָעֲגָלָה וְאֵת הָאַרְגַּז וְאֵת עַכְבְּרֵי הַזָּהָב וְאֵת צַלְמֵי טְחֹרֵיהֶם׃

12The cows went straight ahead along the road to Beit Shemesh. They went along a single highroad, lowing as they went, and turning off neither to the right nor to the left; and the lords of the Philistines walked behind them as far as the border of Beit Shemesh.

יבוַיִשַּׁרְנָה הַפָּרוֹת בַּדֶּרֶךְ עַל־דֶּרֶךְ בֵּית שֶׁמֶשׁ בִּמְסִלָּה אַחַת הָלְכוּ הָלֹךְ וְגָעוֹ וְלֹא־סָרוּ יָמִין וּשְׂמֹאול וְסַרְנֵי פְלִשְׁתִּים הֹלְכִים אַחֲרֵיהֶם עַד־גְּבוּל בֵּית שָׁמֶשׁ׃

13The people of Beit Shemesh were reaping their wheat harvest in the valley. They looked up and saw the Aron, and they rejoiced when they saw [it].

יגוּבֵית שֶׁמֶשׁ קֹצְרִים קְצִיר־חִטִּים בָּעֵמֶק וַיִּשְׂאוּ אֶת־עֵינֵיהֶם וַיִּרְאוּ אֶת־הָאָרוֹן וַיִּשְׂמְחוּ לִרְאוֹת׃

14The cart came into the field of Yehoshua of Beit Shemesh and it stopped there. They split up the wood of the cart and presented the cows as a burnt offering to Hashem. A large stone was there;

ידוְהָעֲגָלָה בָּאָה אֶל־שְׂדֵה יְהוֹשֻׁעַ בֵּית־הַשִּׁמְשִׁי וַתַּעֲמֹד שָׁם וְשָׁם אֶבֶן גְּדוֹלָה וַיְבַקְּעוּ אֶת־עֲצֵי הָעֲגָלָה וְאֶת־הַפָּרוֹת הֶעֱלוּ עֹלָה לַיהֹוָה׃

15and the Leviim took down the Aron of Hashem and the chest beside it containing the gold objects and placed them on the large stone. Then the men of Beit Shemesh presented burnt offerings and other sacrifices to Hashem that day.

טווְהַלְוִיִּם הוֹרִידוּ אֶת־אֲרוֹן יְהֹוָה וְאֶת־הָאַרְגַּז אֲשֶׁר־אִתּוֹ אֲשֶׁר־בּוֹ כְלֵי־זָהָב וַיָּשִׂמוּ אֶל־הָאֶבֶן הַגְּדוֹלָה וְאַנְשֵׁי בֵית־שֶׁמֶשׁ הֶעֱלוּ עֹלוֹת וַיִּזְבְּחוּ זְבָחִים בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא לַיהֹוָה׃

16The five lords of the Philistines saw this and returned the same day to Ekron.

טזוַחֲמִשָּׁה סַרְנֵי־פְלִשְׁתִּים רָאוּ וַיָּשֻׁבוּ עֶקְרוֹן בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא׃

17The following were the golden hemorrhoids that the Philistines paid as an indemnity to Hashem: For Ashdod, one; for Azza, one; for Ashkelon, one; for Gath, one; for Ekron, one.

יזוְאֵלֶּה טְחֹרֵי הַזָּהָב אֲשֶׁר הֵשִׁיבוּ פְלִשְׁתִּים אָשָׁם לַיהֹוָה לְאַשְׁדּוֹד אֶחָד לְעַזָּה אֶחָד לְאַשְׁקְלוֹן אֶחָד לְגַת אֶחָד לְעֶקְרוֹן אֶחָד׃

18As for the golden mice, their number accorded with all the Philistine towns that belonged to the five lords—both fortified towns and unwalled villages, as far as the great stone on which the Aron of Hashem was set down, to this day, in the field of Yehoshua of Beit Shemesh.

יחוְעַכְבְּרֵי הַזָּהָב מִסְפַּר כָּל־עָרֵי פְלִשְׁתִּים לַחֲמֵשֶׁת הַסְּרָנִים מֵעִיר מִבְצָר וְעַד כֹּפֶר הַפְּרָזִי וְעַד אָבֵל הַגְּדוֹלָה אֲשֶׁר הִנִּיחוּ עָלֶיהָ אֵת אֲרוֹן יְהֹוָה עַד הַיּוֹם הַזֶּה בִּשְׂדֵה יְהוֹשֻׁעַ בֵּית־הַשִּׁמְשִׁי׃

19[Hashem] struck at the men of Beit Shemesh because they looked into the Aron of Hashem; He struck down seventy men among the people [and] fifty thousand men. The people mourned, for He had inflicted a great slaughter upon the population.

יטוַיַּךְ בְּאַנְשֵׁי בֵית־שֶׁמֶשׁ כִּי רָאוּ בַּאֲרוֹן יְהֹוָה וַיַּךְ בָּעָם שִׁבְעִים אִישׁ חֲמִשִּׁים אֶלֶף אִישׁ וַיִּתְאַבְּלוּ הָעָם כִּי־הִכָּה יְהֹוָה בָּעָם מַכָּה גְדוֹלָה

20And the men of Beit Shemesh asked, “Who can stand in attendance on Hashem, this holy Hashem? And to whom shall He go up from us?”

כוַיֹּאמְרוּ אַנְשֵׁי בֵית־שֶׁמֶשׁ מִי יוּכַל לַעֲמֹד לִפְנֵי יְהֹוָה הָאֱלֹהִים הַקָּדוֹשׁ הַזֶּה וְאֶל־מִי יַעֲלֶה מֵעָלֵינוּ׃

21They sent messengers to the inhabitants of Kiryat Ye'arim to say, “The Philistines have sent back the Aron of Hashem. Come down and take it into your keeping.”

כאוַיִּשְׁלְחוּ מַלְאָכִים אֶל־יוֹשְׁבֵי קִרְיַת־יְעָרִים לֵאמֹר הֵשִׁבוּ פְלִשְׁתִּים אֶת־אֲרוֹן יְהֹוָה רְדוּ הַעֲלוּ אֹתוֹ אֲלֵיכֶם׃