1 Samuel 6:19
New International Version
But God struck down some of the inhabitants of Beth Shemesh, putting seventy of them to death because they looked into the ark of the LORD. The people mourned because of the heavy blow the LORD had dealt them.

New Living Translation
But the LORD killed seventy men from Beth-shemesh because they looked into the Ark of the LORD. And the people mourned greatly because of what the LORD had done.

English Standard Version
And he struck some of the men of Beth-shemesh, because they looked upon the ark of the LORD. He struck seventy men of them, and the people mourned because the LORD had struck the people with a great blow.

Berean Study Bible
But God struck down some of the people of Beth-shemesh because they looked inside the ark of the LORD. He struck down seventy men, and the people mourned because the LORD had struck them with a great slaughter.

New American Standard Bible
He struck down some of the men of Beth-shemesh because they had looked into the ark of the LORD. He struck down of all the people, 50,070 men, and the people mourned because the LORD had struck the people with a great slaughter.

King James Bible
And he smote the men of Bethshemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the LORD, even he smote of the people fifty thousand and threescore and ten men: and the people lamented, because the LORD had smitten many of the people with a great slaughter.

Christian Standard Bible
God struck down the people of Beth-shemesh because they looked inside the ark of the LORD. He struck down seventy persons. The people mourned because the LORD struck them with a great slaughter.

Contemporary English Version
Some of the men of Beth-Shemesh looked inside the sacred chest, and the LORD God killed 70 of them. This made the people of Beth-Shemesh very sad,

Good News Translation
The LORD killed seventy of the men of Beth Shemesh because they looked inside the Covenant Box. And the people mourned because the LORD had caused such a great slaughter among them.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
God struck down the men of Beth-shemesh because they looked inside the ark of the LORD. He struck down 70 men out of 50,000 men. The people mourned because the LORD struck them with a great slaughter.

International Standard Version
God struck down the men of Beth-shemesh because they had looked into the Ark of the LORD. He struck down 50,070 men among the people, and the people mourned because the LORD struck down the people with a great slaughter.

NET Bible
But the LORD struck down some of the people of Beth Shemesh because they had looked into the ark of the LORD; he struck down 50,070 of the men. The people grieved because the LORD had struck the people with a hard blow.

New Heart English Bible
He struck of the men of Beth Shemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the LORD. He struck of the people fifty thousand seventy men; and the people mourned, because the LORD had struck the people with a great slaughter.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
God struck down some of the people from Beth Shemesh because they looked inside the ark of the LORD. He struck down 70 people. The people mourned because the LORD struck them with such a great blow.

JPS Tanakh 1917
And He smote of the men of Beth-shemesh, because they had gazed upon the ark of the LORD, even He smote of the people seventy men, and fifty thousand men; and the people mourned, because the LORD had smitten the people with a great slaughter.

New American Standard 1977
And He struck down some of the men of Beth-shemesh because they had looked into the ark of the LORD. He struck down of all the people, 50,070 men, and the people mourned because the LORD had struck the people with a great slaughter.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Then God smote those of Bethshemesh because they had looked at the ark of the LORD; he smote fifty thousand of the people and seventy principal men. And the people lamented because the LORD had smitten the people with such a great slaughter.

King James 2000 Bible
And he struck the men of Bethshemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the LORD, even he struck of the people fifty thousand and threescore and ten men: and the people lamented, because the LORD had struck many of the people with a great slaughter.

American King James Version
And he smote the men of Bethshemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the LORD, even he smote of the people fifty thousand and three score and ten men: and the people lamented, because the LORD had smitten many of the people with a great slaughter.

American Standard Version
And he smote of the men of Beth-shemesh, because they had looked into the ark of Jehovah, he smote of the people seventy men, and fifty thousand men; and the people mourned, because Jehovah had smitten the people with a great slaughter.

Brenton Septuagint Translation
And the sons of Jechonias were not pleased with the men of Baethsamys, because they saw the ark of the Lord; and the Lord smote among them seventy men, and fifty thousand men: and the people mourned, because the Lord had inflicted on the people, a very great plague.

Douay-Rheims Bible
But he slew of the men of Bethsames, because they had seen the ark of the Lord: and he slew of the people seventy men, and fifty thousand of the common people. And the people lamented, because the Lord had smitten the people with a great slaughter.

Darby Bible Translation
And he smote among the men of Beth-shemesh, because they had looked into the ark of Jehovah, and smote of the people seventy men; and the people lamented, because Jehovah had smitten the people with a great slaughter.

English Revised Version
And he smote of the men of Beth-shemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the LORD, even he smote of the people seventy men, and fifty thousand men: and the people mourned, because the LORD had smitten the people with a great slaughter.

Webster's Bible Translation
And he smote the men of Beth-shemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the LORD, even he smote of the people fifty thousand and seventy men: and the people lamented, because the LORD had smitten many of the people with a great slaughter.

World English Bible
He struck of the men of Beth Shemesh, because they had looked into the ark of Yahweh, he struck of the people fifty thousand seventy men; and the people mourned, because Yahweh had struck the people with a great slaughter.

Young's Literal Translation
And He smiteth among the men of Beth-Shemesh, for they looked into the ark of Jehovah, yea, He smiteth among the people seventy men -- fifty chief men; and the people mourn, because Jehovah smote among the people -- a great smiting.
Study Bible
The Ark Returned to Israel
18The number of gold rats also corresponded to the number of Philistine cities belonging to the five rulers—the fortified cities and their outlying villages. And to this day the large rock on which they placed the ark of the LORD is in the field of Joshua of Beth-shemesh. 19But God struck down some of the people of Beth-shemesh because they looked inside the ark of the LORD. He struck down seventy men, and the people mourned because the LORD had struck them with a great slaughter. 20The men of Beth-shemesh asked, “Who can stand in the presence of the LORD, this holy God? To whom should the ark go up from here?”…
Cross References
Exodus 19:21
and the LORD said to him, "Go down and warn the people not to break through to see the LORD, lest many of them perish.

Numbers 4:5
Whenever the camp sets out, Aaron and his sons are to go in, take down the veil of the curtain, and cover the Ark of the Testimony with it.

Numbers 4:15
When Aaron and his sons have finished covering the holy objects and all their equipment, as soon as the camp is ready to move, the Kohathites shall come and do the carrying. But they must not touch the holy objects, or they will die. These are the transportation duties of the Kohathites regarding the Tent of Meeting.

Numbers 4:20
But the Kohathites are not to go in and look at the holy objects, even for a moment, or they will die."

2 Samuel 6:7
And the anger of the LORD burned against Uzzah, and God struck him down on the spot for his irreverence, and he died there beside the ark of God.

Treasury of Scripture

And he smote the men of Bethshemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the LORD, even he smote of the people fifty thousand and three score and ten men: and the people lamented, because the LORD had smitten many of the people with a great slaughter.

he smote

Exodus 19:21
And the LORD said unto Moses, Go down, charge the people, lest they break through unto the LORD to gaze, and many of them perish.

Leviticus 10:1-3
And Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took either of them his censer, and put fire therein, and put incense thereon, and offered strange fire before the LORD, which he commanded them not…

Numbers 4:4,5,15,20
This shall be the service of the sons of Kohath in the tabernacle of the congregation, about the most holy things: …







Lexicon
But God struck down
וַיַּ֞ךְ (way·yaḵ)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Hifil - Consecutive imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 5221: To strike

some of the people
בֵֽית־ (ḇêṯ-)
Preposition
Strong's Hebrew

of Beth-shemesh
שֶׁ֗מֶשׁ (še·meš)
Noun - proper - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 1053: Beth-shemesh -- 'sun temple', three places in Palestine, also a place in Egypt

because
כִּ֤י (kî)
Conjunction
Strong's Hebrew 3588: A relative conjunction

they looked
רָאוּ֙ (rā·’ū)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - third person common plural
Strong's Hebrew 7200: To see

inside the ark
בַּאֲר֣וֹן (ba·’ă·rō·wn)
Preposition-b | Noun - common singular construct
Strong's Hebrew 727: A chest, ark

of the LORD.
יְהוָ֔ה (Yah·weh)
Noun - proper - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3068: LORD -- the proper name of the God of Israel

He struck down
וַיַּ֤ךְ (way·yaḵ)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Hifil - Consecutive imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 5221: To strike

seventy
שִׁבְעִ֣ים (šiḇ·‘îm)
Number - common plural
Strong's Hebrew 7657: Seventy (a cardinal number)

men,
אִ֑ישׁ (’îš)
Noun - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 376: A man as an individual, a male person

and the people mourned
וַיִּֽתְאַבְּל֣וּ (way·yiṯ·’ab·bə·lū)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Hitpael - Consecutive imperfect - third person masculine plural
Strong's Hebrew 56: To bewail

because
כִּֽי־ (kî-)
Conjunction
Strong's Hebrew 3588: A relative conjunction

the LORD
יְהוָ֛ה (Yah·weh)
Noun - proper - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3068: LORD -- the proper name of the God of Israel

had struck
הִכָּ֧ה (hik·kāh)
Verb - Hifil - Perfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 5221: To strike

them
הָעָ֔ם (hā·‘ām)
Article | Noun - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 5971: A people, a tribe, troops, attendants, a flock

with a great
גְדוֹלָֽה‪‬ (ḡə·ḏō·w·lāh)
Adjective - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 1419: Great, older, insolent

slaughter.
מַכָּ֥ה (mak·kāh)
Noun - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 4347: A wound, carnage, pestilence
(19) They had looked into the ark.--Some commentators consider that the words here should be rendered, "because they had looked at the Ark" with a foolish irreverent staring, which dishonoured the holiness of the sacred mercy-seat; but it is better far to preserve the rendering of our English Version, which is also the favourite Rabbinical explanation of the original. It seems probable that the chief men of the city, most of whom were priests and Levites, after the festive rejoicings which accompanied the sacrificial feast celebrating the Ark's joyful return, heated with wine, lost all sense of reverence, and determined to use this opportunity of gazing into that sacred chest of which they had heard so much, and into which no profane eye in Israel had ever peered, since the golden Cover--on which the glory of the Eternal loved to rest--had sealed up the sacred treasures in the wilderness. Perhaps they wished to see those grey Sinai tablets on which the finger of God had traced His ten solemn commandments; perhaps they excused themselves by a desire to learn if the Philistines had violated the secrets of the holy chest.

Even he smote of the people fifty thousand and threescore and ten men.--Here it is perfectly clear that the present Hebrew text, which the English Version literally renders, is corrupt. The system of writing letters for numbers, as we have seen, constantly has occasioned great discrepancies in the several versions, &c. Here the arrangement of the letters which express this enormous number is quite unusual, and taken by itself would be sufficient to excite grave doubts as to the accuracy of this text. The number of stricken ones, 50,070, is simply inconceivable. Beth-shemesh was never a large or important place; there were, in fact, no great cities in Israel, the population was always a scattered one, the people living generally on their farms. Dean Payne Smith computes the population of Jerusalem in its best days as under 70,000. The various versions, LXX., Chaldee, &c, vary in their rendering of these astounding figures. Josephus, Antt. vi. 1, ? 4, in his account of this occurrence speaks of the smitten as numbering seventy. This is probably the correct number. A strange reading, which the LXX. inserts here, deserves to be quoted; it is another proof of the uncertainty of the text at the close of this sixth chapter: "And the children of Jechoniah among the Beth-shemites were not pleased with the men of Beth-shemesh because they saw the Ark, and he smote them, &c." Erdmann, in Lange, is inclined to believe the LXX. Version represents the true text, and thus comments on it: "The reason of the sudden death of the seventy of the race of Jechoniah is their unsympathising and, therefore, unholy bearing towards the symbols of God's presence among His people, which showed a mind wholly estranged from the living God--a symptom of the religious moral degeneracy which had spread among the people, though piety was still to be found."

Verse 19. - He emote the men of Beth-shemesh, etc. In this verse also the text is undoubtedly corrupt. The Septuagint ascribes the sin not to all the people, but to "the sons of Jeconiah, who were not glad when they saw the ark, and he smote them." But as this reading is not supported by the other versions we may pass it by. The numbers, however, are evidently wrong. Fifty thousand men would imply a population of 250,000 people, whereas Jerusalem itself in its palmiest days never had a population of even 70,000. There were no large cities among the Israelites, but a scattered population living upon their fields, and with a few small walled towns here and there to protect them and their cattle in any sudden emergency. Kennicott, however, has satisfactorily explained the mistake. In the old way of denoting numbers by the letters of the alphabet an ain = 70 had been mistaken for a nun with two dots = 50,000. The Syriac has 5000, that is, a nun with one dot. We must add that the Hebrew is not fifty thousand and threescore and ten men, but "seventy men, fifty thousand men," without any article between, and with the smaller number first, contrary to Hebrew rule. The occasion of the calamity was probably as follows: - As the news of the return of the ark spread from mouth to mouth, the people flocked together to take part in the sacrifice. which would of course be followed by a feast. Heated thereat by wine, perhaps, and merriment, they lost all sense of reverence, and encouraged one another to look into the ark and examine its contents, though the words need not absolutely mean more than that "they looked at the ark." Even so the men of Beth-shemesh, as a city of priests, must have known that death was the penalty of unhallowed gazing at holy things (Numbers 4:20), and it is more than probable that those who were smitten were priests, because in them it would be a heinous sin; for it was a repetition of that contempt for religion and its symbols which had been condemned so sternly in Eli's sons. The mere seeing of the ark was no sin, and had given the people only joy (ver. 13), but as soon as they had received it the priests ought to have covered it with a vail (Numbers 4:5). To leave it without a vail was neglectful, to pry into it was sacrilege. Because Jehovah had smitten many of the people, etc. This clause should be translated, "because Jehovah had smitten the people with a great smiting." The sudden death even of seventy men in an agricultural district, especially if they were the heads of the priestly families there, would be a great and terrible calamity, enough to fill the whole place with grief. 6:19-21 It is a great affront to God, for vain men to pry into, and meddle with the secret things which belong not to them, De 29:29; Col 2:18. Man was ruined by desiring forbidden knowledge. God will not suffer his ark to be profaned. Be not deceived, God is not mocked. Those that will not fear his goodness, and reverently use the tokens of his grace, shall be made to feel his justice. The number smitten is expressed in an unusual manner in the original, and it is probable that it means 1170. They desire to be rid of the ark. Foolish men run from one extreme to the other. They should rather have asked, How may we have peace with God, and recover his favor? Mic 6:6,7. Thus, when the word of God works with terror on sinners' consciences, they, instead of taking the blame and shame to themselves, quarrel with the word, and put that from them. Many stifle their convictions, and put salvation away from them.
Jump to Previous
Ark Beth Bethshemesh Beth-Shemesh Beth-She'mesh Lamented Mourned Seventy Shemesh Slaughter Slew Smitten Smote Struck Ten Thousand Threescore
Jump to Next
Ark Beth Bethshemesh Beth-Shemesh Beth-She'mesh Lamented Mourned Seventy Shemesh Slaughter Slew Smitten Smote Struck Ten Thousand Threescore
Links
1 Samuel 6:19 NIV
1 Samuel 6:19 NLT
1 Samuel 6:19 ESV
1 Samuel 6:19 NASB
1 Samuel 6:19 KJV

1 Samuel 6:19 Bible Apps
1 Samuel 6:19 Biblia Paralela
1 Samuel 6:19 Chinese Bible
1 Samuel 6:19 French Bible
1 Samuel 6:19 German Bible

Alphabetical: 50070 all and ark because Beth Beth-shemesh blow But dealt death down God great had He heavy into looked LORD men mourned of people putting seventy Shemesh slaughter some struck the them they to with

OT History: 1 Samuel 6:19 He struck of the men of Beth (1Sa iSam 1 Sam i sa) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
1 Samuel 6:18
Top of Page
Top of Page