1 Samuel 6:9
New International Version
but keep watching it. If it goes up to its own territory, toward Beth Shemesh, then the LORD has brought this great disaster on us. But if it does not, then we will know that it was not his hand that struck us but that it happened to us by chance."

New Living Translation
If they cross the border of our land and go to Beth-shemesh, we will know it was the LORD who brought this great disaster upon us. If they don’t, we will know it was not his hand that caused the plague. It came simply by chance.”

English Standard Version
and watch. If it goes up on the way to its own land, to Beth-shemesh, then it is he who has done us this great harm, but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that struck us; it happened to us by coincidence.”

Berean Study Bible
but keep watching it. If it goes up the road to its homeland, toward Beth-shemesh, it is the LORD who has brought on us this great disaster. But if it does not, then we will know that it was not His hand that punished us and that it happened by chance.”

King James Bible
And see, if it goeth up by the way of his own coast to Bethshemesh, then he hath done us this great evil: but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that smote us; it was a chance that happened to us.

New King James Version
And watch: if it goes up the road to its own territory, to Beth Shemesh, then He has done us this great evil. But if not, then we shall know that it is not His hand that struck us—it happened to us by chance.”

New American Standard Bible
But watch: if it goes up by the way of its own territory to Beth-shemesh, then He has done this great evil to us. But if not, then we will know that it was not His hand that struck us; it happened to us by chance.”

NASB 1995
"Watch, if it goes up by the way of its own territory to Beth-shemesh, then He has done us this great evil. But if not, then we will know that it was not His hand that struck us; it happened to us by chance."

NASB 1977
“And watch, if it goes up by the way of its own territory to Beth-shemesh, then He has done us this great evil. But if not, then we shall know that it was not His hand that struck us; it happened to us by chance.”

Amplified Bible
But watch, if it goes up by the way of its own territory to Beth-shemesh, then [you will know that] He has done us this great evil. But if not, then we will know that it was not His hand that struck us; this disaster happened to us by chance.”

Christian Standard Bible
Then watch: If it goes up the road to its homeland toward Beth-shemesh, it is the LORD who has made this terrible trouble for us. However, if it doesn’t, we will know that it was not his hand that punished us—it was just something that happened to us by chance.”

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Then watch: If it goes up the road to its homeland toward Beth-shemesh, it is the LORD who has made this terrible trouble for us. However, if it doesn't, we will know that it was not His hand that punished us--it was just something that happened to us by chance."

American Standard Version
And see; if it goeth up by the way of its own border to Beth-shemesh, then he hath done us this great evil: but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that smote us; it was a chance that happened to us.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And see, if it goes on the road of the border that goes up to Bayth Shemesh, LORD JEHOVAH has done this great evil to us, and if not, we will know that it was not his hand that has come to us, but it was chance to us”

Brenton Septuagint Translation
And ye shall see, if it shall go the way of its coasts along by Baethsamys, he has brought upon us this great affliction; and if not, then shall we know that his hand has not touched us, but this is a chance which has happened to us.

Contemporary English Version
Watch to see if the chest goes on up the road to the Israelite town of Beth-Shemesh. If it goes back to its own country, you will know that it was the LORD who made us suffer so badly. But if the chest doesn't go back to its own country, then the LORD had nothing to do with the disease that hit us--it was simply bad luck.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And you shall look: and if it go up by the way of his own coasts towards Bethsames, then he hath done us this great evil: but if not, we shall know that it is not his hand hath touched us, but it hath happened by chance.

English Revised Version
And see, if it goeth up by the way of its own border to Beth-shemesh, then he hath done us this great evil: but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that smote us; it was a chance that happened to us.

Good News Translation
Then watch it go; if it goes toward the town of Beth Shemesh, this means that it is the God of the Israelites who has sent this terrible disaster on us. But if it doesn't, then we will know that he did not send the plague; it was only a matter of chance."

GOD'S WORD® Translation
but then watch where it goes. If it goes up the road to its own country toward Beth Shemesh, then this disaster is the LORD's doing. But if not, we'll know it wasn't his hand that struck us, but what happened to us was an accident."

International Standard Version
Keep watching it. If it goes up along the road to its own territory to Beth-shemesh, it's the LORD who has done this great evil to us. But if it does not, then we will know that he wasn't pressuring us. It happened to us as a natural event."

JPS Tanakh 1917
And see, if it goeth up by the way of its own border to Beth-shemesh, then He hath done us this great evil; but if not, then we shall know that it is not His hand that smote us; it was a chance that happened to us.'

Literal Standard Version
and you have seen if it goes up the way of its own border, to Beth-Shemesh—He has done this great evil to us; and if not, then we have known that His hand has not come against us; it has been an accident to us.”

NET Bible
But keep an eye on it. If it should go up by the way of its own border to Beth Shemesh, then he has brought this great calamity on us. But if that is not the case, then we will know that it was not his hand that struck us; rather, it just happened to us by accident."

New Heart English Bible
And watch; if it goes up by the way of its own territory to Beth Shemesh, then he has done us this great evil: but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that struck us; it was a chance that happened to us."

World English Bible
Behold; if it goes up by the way of its own border to Beth Shemesh, then he has done us this great evil: but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that struck us; it was a chance that happened to us."

Young's Literal Translation
and ye have seen, if the way of its own border it goeth up to Beth-Shemesh -- He hath done to us this great evil; and if not, then we have known that His hand hath not come against us; an accident it hath been to us.'

Additional Translations ...
Context
The Ark Returned to Israel
8Take the ark of the LORD, set it on the cart, and in a chest beside it put the gold objects you are sending Him as a guilt offering. Then send the ark on its way, 9but keep watching it. If it goes up the road to its homeland, toward Beth-shemesh, it is the LORD who has brought on us this great disaster. But if it does not, then we will know that it was not His hand that punished us and that it happened by chance.” 10So the men did as instructed. They took two milk cows, hitched them to the cart, and penned up their calves.…

Cross References
Joshua 15:10
The border curled westward from Baalah to Mount Seir, ran along the northern slope of Mount Jearim (that is, Chesalon), went down to Beth-shemesh, and crossed to Timnah.

Joshua 21:16
Ain, Juttah, and Beth-shemesh--nine cities from these two tribes, together with their pasturelands.

1 Samuel 6:3
They replied, "If you return the ark of the God of Israel, do not send it away empty, but by all means return it to Him with a guilt offering. Then you will be healed, and you will understand why His hand has not been lifted from you."

1 Samuel 6:10
So the men did as instructed. They took two milk cows, hitched them to the cart, and penned up their calves.

1 Samuel 6:12
And the cows headed straight up the road toward Beth-shemesh, staying on that one highway and lowing as they went, never straying to the right or to the left. The rulers of the Philistines followed behind them to the border of Beth-shemesh.

Ecclesiastes 9:11
I saw something else under the sun: The race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong; neither is the bread to the wise, nor the wealth to the intelligent, nor the favor to the skillful. For time and chance happen to all.


Treasury of Scripture

And see, if it goes up by the way of his own coast to Bethshemesh, then he has done us this great evil: but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that smote us: it was a chance that happened to us.

Beth-shemesh

Joshua 15:10
And the border compassed from Baalah westward unto mount Seir, and passed along unto the side of mount Jearim, which is Chesalon, on the north side, and went down to Bethshemesh, and passed on to Timnah:

Joshua 21:16
And Ain with her suburbs, and Juttah with her suburbs, and Bethshemesh with her suburbs; nine cities out of those two tribes.

he.

Amos 3:6
Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? shall there be evil in a city, and the LORD hath not done it?

we shall

1 Samuel 6:3
And they said, If ye send away the ark of the God of Israel, send it not empty; but in any wise return him a trespass offering: then ye shall be healed, and it shall be known to you why his hand is not removed from you.

not his hand

Isaiah 26:11
LORD, when thy hand is lifted up, they will not see: but they shall see, and be ashamed for their envy at the people; yea, the fire of thine enemies shall devour them.

a chance

2 Samuel 1:6
And the young man that told him said, As I happened by chance upon mount Gilboa, behold, Saul leaned upon his spear; and, lo, the chariots and horsemen followed hard after him.

2 Samuel 1:6
And the young man that told him said, As I happened by chance upon mount Gilboa, behold, Saul leaned upon his spear; and, lo, the chariots and horsemen followed hard after him.

Ecclesiastes 9:11
I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.









(9) It was a chance that happened to us.--The priests and diviners were not certain whether the plague had been sent by the offended God of Israel or had visited Philistia in the ordinary course of nature. This strange experiment would satisfy the minds of the Philistine people. If the cows, contrary to their expectation, kept on the road to Bethshemesh, this would be a sign that they were driven and guided by a Divine power, and it would be clear to all that the Ark was a dangerous possession, and that they were well rid of it. They would be assured then that the scourge they were suffering from came from the angry Israelite Deity. If, on the other hand, the animals, left to themselves, returned to their own stalls, which, evidently, the diviners expected would be the case--then the Philistines might safely retain the Ark, being confident that their late sufferings were simply the results of natural causes. It will be remembered (1Samuel 6:7) that these were milch cows, whose calves were shut up in the stall. The diviners felt quite sure that the cows, left to their own instincts, would, unless driven by some Divine power, come back to their young ones in the stall. What the priests and diviners advised was done, and the next two verses (10 and 11) relate how the restoration of the Ark was carried out in the way prescribed above.

Verse 9. - His own coast, or "border." The ark throughout this verse is spoken of as if it were itself a deity. Beth-shemesh - i.e. "the house of the sun," also called Irshemesh, "city of the sun" (Joshua 19:41) - had evidently been in the time of the Canaanites the seat of this popular idolatry. It was now a city of the priests, situated in the tribe of Judah, on its northeastern border, next the tribe of Dan, and was the nearest Israelite town to Ekron. If, then, the kine, albeit unused to the yoke, left their calves behind, and drew the cart by the most direct route unto the land of Judah, they would give the required proof that the Philistines were smitten by the hand of Jehovah, and that it was no chance that had happened unto them.

Parallel Commentaries ...


Hebrew
but keep watching it.
וּרְאִיתֶ֗ם (ū·rə·’î·ṯem)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Conjunctive perfect - second person masculine plural
Strong's 7200: To see

If
אִם־ (’im-)
Conjunction
Strong's 518: Lo!, whether?, if, although, Oh that!, when, not

it goes up
יַֽעֲלֶה֙ (ya·‘ă·leh)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's 5927: To ascend, in, actively

the road
דֶּ֨רֶךְ (de·reḵ)
Noun - common singular construct
Strong's 1870: A road, a course of life, mode of action

to its homeland,
גְּבוּל֤וֹ (gə·ḇū·lōw)
Noun - masculine singular construct | third person masculine singular
Strong's 1366: A cord, a boundary, the territory inclosed

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

it is the LORD
ה֚וּא (hū)
Pronoun - third person masculine singular
Strong's 1931: He, self, the same, this, that, as, are

who has brought
עָ֣שָׂה (‘ā·śāh)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's 6213: To do, make

on us
לָ֔נוּ (lā·nū)
Preposition | first person common plural
Strong's Hebrew

this
הַזֹּ֑את (haz·zōṯ)
Article | Pronoun - feminine singular
Strong's 2063: Hereby in it, likewise, the one other, same, she, so much, such deed, that,

great
הַגְּדוֹלָ֖ה (hag·gə·ḏō·w·lāh)
Article | Adjective - feminine singular
Strong's 1419: Great, older, insolent

disaster.
הָרָעָ֥ה (hā·rā·‘āh)
Article | Adjective - feminine singular
Strong's 7451: Bad, evil

But if
וְאִם־ (wə·’im-)
Conjunctive waw | Conjunction
Strong's 518: Lo!, whether?, if, although, Oh that!, when, not

it does not,
לֹ֗א (lō)
Adverb - Negative particle
Strong's 3808: Not, no

then we will know
וְיָדַ֙עְנוּ֙ (wə·yā·ḏa‘·nū)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Conjunctive perfect - first person common plural
Strong's 3045: To know

that
כִּ֣י (kî)
Conjunction
Strong's 3588: A relative conjunction

it was not
לֹ֤א (lō)
Adverb - Negative particle
Strong's 3808: Not, no

His hand
יָדוֹ֙ (yā·ḏōw)
Noun - feminine singular construct | third person masculine singular
Strong's 3027: A hand

that punished
נָ֣גְעָה (nā·ḡə·‘āh)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - third person feminine singular
Strong's 5060: To touch, lay the hand upon, to reach, violently, to strike

us
בָּ֔נוּ (bā·nū)
Preposition | first person common plural
Strong's Hebrew

and that it
ה֖וּא (hū)
Pronoun - third person masculine singular
Strong's 1931: He, self, the same, this, that, as, are

happened
הָ֥יָה (hā·yāh)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's 1961: To fall out, come to pass, become, be

by chance.?
מִקְרֶ֥ה (miq·reh)
Noun - masculine singular
Strong's 4745: Something met with, an accident, fortune


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OT History: 1 Samuel 6:9 Behold (1Sa iSam 1 Sam i sa)
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