4:12 On that day16 a Benjaminite ran from the battle lines and came to Shiloh. His clothes were torn and dirt was on his head. 4:13 When he arrived in Shiloh, Eli was sitting in his chair watching by the side of17 the road, for he was very worried18 about the ark of God. As the man entered the city to give his report,19 the whole city cried out.
4:14 When Eli heard the outcry,20 he said, “What is this commotion?”21 The man quickly came and told Eli. 4:15 Now Eli was ninety-eight years old and his eyes looked straight ahead;22 he was unable to see.
4:16 The man said to Eli, “I am the one who came from the battle lines! Just today I fled from the battle lines!” Eli23 asked, “How did things go, my son?” 4:17 The messenger replied, “Israel has fled from24 the Philistines! The army has suffered a great defeat! Your two sons, Hophni and Phineas, are dead! The ark of God has been captured!”
4:18 When he mentioned the ark of God, Eli25 fell backward from his chair beside the gate. He broke his neck and died, for he26 was old and heavy. He had judged Israel for forty years.
4:19 His daughter-in-law, the wife of Phineas, was pregnant and close to giving birth. When she heard that the ark of God was captured and that her father-in-law and her husband were dead, she doubled over and gave birth. But her labor pains were too much for her. 4:20 As she was dying, the women who were there with her said, “Don’t be afraid! You have given birth to a son!” But she did not reply or pay any attention.27
4:21 She named the boy Ichabod,28 saying, “The glory has departed from Israel,” referring to the capture of the ark of God and the deaths of her father-in-law and her husband. 4:22 She said, “The glory has departed from Israel, because the ark of God has been captured.”
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