1 And the ark of the LORD was in the field of the Philistines seven months.
2 And the Philistines called for the priests and the diviners, saying, What shall we do to the ark of the LORD? Tell us with what we shall send with it to its place.
3 And they said, If you send away the ark of the God of Israel, do not send it empty. For you shall certainly send a guilt offering to him. Then you shall be healed, and it shall be known to you why His hand is not removed from you.
4 And they said, What [shall be] the guilt offering which we shall return to Him? And they answered, Five golden hemorrhoids, and five golden mice, for the number of the lords of the Philistines. For one plague [was] on you all, and on your lords.
5 And you shall make images of your hemorrhoids, and images of your mice which mar the land. And you shall give glory to the God of Israel. Perhaps He will lighten His hand from off you, and from off your gods, and from off your land.
6 And why do you harden your hearts, as the Egyptians and Pharaoh hardened their hearts? When He had worked wonderfully among them, did they not let the people go, and did they not depart?
7 And now make a new cart, and take two milk cows on which there has come no yoke, and tie the cows to the cart, and bring their calves home from them.
8 And take the ark of the LORD and lay it on the cart. And put the jewels of gold which you return to Him [for] a trespass offering in a box in its side. And send it away so that it may go.
9 And watch. If it goes up by the way of its own border to Beth-shemesh, 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.
10 And the men did so. And they took two milk cows and tied them to the cart, and shut up their calves at home.
11 And they laid the ark of the LORD on the cart, and the box [with] the mice of gold and the images of their hemorrhoids.
12 And the cows took the straight way to the way of Beth-shemesh, going along the highway, lowing as they went. And they did not turn aside [to] the right or to the left. And the lords of the Philistines went after them to the border of Beth-shemesh.
13 And [the people] of Beth-shemesh [were] reaping their wheat harvest in the valley. And they lifted up their eyes and saw the ark, and rejoiced to see [it].
14 And the cart came into the field of Joshua, a Bethshemite, and stood there and there was a great stone. And they cut the wood of the cart and offered the cows as a burnt offering to the LORD.
15 And the Levites took down the ark of the LORD and the box in it, in which the jewels of gold were, and put [them] on the great stone. And the men of Beth-shemesh offered burnt offerings and sacrificed sacrifices the same day to the LORD.
16 And when the five lords of the Philistines had seen, they returned [to] Ekron on that day.
17 And these [are] the golden hemorrhoids which the Philistines returned [for] a guilt offering to the LORD: for Ashdod, one; for Gaza, one; for Askelon one; for Gath, one; for Ekron, one.
18 And the golden mice were [according to] the number of all the cities of the Philistines for the five lords, of fortified cities and of country villages, even to the great meadow on which they set down the ark of the LORD to this day, in the field of Joshua the Bethshemite.
19 And He struck the men of Beth-shemesh because they had looked into the ark of the LORD. He even struck seventy among the people, [including] fifty chief men. And the people lamented because the LORD had struck the people with a great slaughter.
20 And the men of Beth-shemesh said, Who is able to stand before this holy LORD God? And to whom shall He go up from us?
21 And they sent messengers to the people of Kirjath-jearim, saying, The Philistines have brought again the ark of the LORD. Come down [and] bring it up to yourselves.