Summary: A study of the book of 1 Samuel 5: 1 – 12
1 Samuel 5: 1 – 12
Misery Loves Company
1 Then the Philistines took the ark of God and brought it from Ebenezer to Ashdod. 2 When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon and set it by Dagon. 3 And when the people of Ashdod arose early in the morning, there was Dagon, fallen on its face to the earth before the ark of the LORD. So they took Dagon and set it in its place again. 4 And when they arose early the next morning, there was Dagon, fallen on its face to the ground before the ark of the LORD. The head of Dagon and both the palms of its hands were broken off on the threshold; only Dagon’s torso was left of it. 5 Therefore neither the priests of Dagon nor any who come into Dagon’s house tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod to this day. 6 But the hand of the LORD was heavy on the people of Ashdod, and He ravaged them and struck them with tumors, both Ashdod and its territory. 7 And when the men of Ashdod saw how it was, they said, “The ark of the God of Israel must not remain with us, for His hand is harsh toward us and Dagon our god.” 8 Therefore they sent and gathered to themselves all the lords of the Philistines, and said, “What shall we do with the ark of the God of Israel?” And they answered, “Let the ark of the God of Israel be carried away to Gath.” So they carried the ark of the God of Israel away. 9 So it was, after they had carried it away, that the hand of the LORD was against the city with a very great destruction; and He struck the men of the city, both small and great, and tumors broke out on them. 10 Therefore they sent the ark of God to Ekron. So it was, as the ark of God came to Ekron, that the Ekronites cried out, saying, “They have brought the ark of the God of Israel to us, to kill us and our people!” 11 So they sent and gathered together all the lords of the Philistines, and said, “Send away the ark of the God of Israel, and let it go back to its own place, so that it does not kill us and our people.” For there was a deadly destruction throughout all the city; the hand of God was very heavy there. 12 And the men who did not die were stricken with the tumors, and the cry of the city went up to heaven.
Have you ever been miserable? Probably not you but I am sure you ran across a few people who were miserable. So what is misery really? It is a state or feeling of great distress or discomfort of mind or body. unhappiness, distress, wretchedness, suffering, anguish, anxiety, angst, torment, pain, grief, heartache, heartbreak, despair, despondency, dejection, depression, desolation, gloom, melancholy, melancholia, woe, sadness, and sorrow
Here are a few people who have described misery in a very interesting way;
“I have learned now that while those who speak about one's miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.”
¯ C.S. Lewis
Oftentimes when people are miserable, they will want to make other people miserable, too. But it never helps.”
¯ Lemony Snicket, The Blank Book
“People label themselves with all sorts of adjectives. I can only pronounce myself as 'nauseatingly miserable beyond repair'.”
¯ Franz Kafka, Diaries of Franz Kafka
“A man's subconscious self is not the ideal companion. It lurks for the greater part of his life in some dark den of its own, hidden away, and emerges only to taunt and deride and increase the misery of a miserable hour.”
¯ P.G. Wodehouse, The Adventures of Sally
You sensed that you should be following a different path, a more ambitious one, you felt that you were destined for other things but you had no idea how to achieve them and in your misery you began to hate everything around you.”
¯ Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Netochka Nezvanova
“Bored with the same type of misery over and over and over again.”
¯ Greg Behrendt
So what are we to understand from chapter 5? You do not mock our Holy Majestic God – plain and simple. Even if you do it ignorantly you will still face some unpleasant consequences.
Today we are going to find out about some really miserable people. To be specific we are talking about the Philistines who as you know were the arch enemies of the Israelites. We are going to find out that the reason for their misery is that they stepped over the line and messed with the Israelites God, our Precious and Holy Jehovah Elyon, The Lord Most High.