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Bringing holy objects into battle
A concept in ancient times that deities were present in or around certain objects. If the object was carried into battle it was believed to bring the deity into the fight and that he would protect his object and in turn his people in the fight.
Key passages
1 Sa 4:3–11

When the army came back to the camp, the elders of Israel asked, “Why has Yahweh defeated us today before the Philistines? Let us bring the ark of the covenant of Yahweh to us from Shiloh so that it may come into our midst and deliver us from the hand of our enemies.” So the army sent to Shiloh …