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1 Samuel 5:8 -

The lords of the Philistines. Philistia was governed by a council of five princes, but whether they were elective or hereditary in the several towns is by no means clear. They are called " seranim ," from seren, "a hinge," just as the cardinals of the Church of Rome take their name from the Latin word cardo, which has the same meaning. There is no ground for connecting the word with sar, "a prince." When Ewald did so he probably forgot that the two words begin with different letters— seren with samech, and sar with shin. Seranim is the word constantly used of the lords of the Philistines ( Joshua 13:3 ; 3:3 ; 16:5 , 16:8 , etc.; 1 Chronicles 12:9 ), though after being correctly so styled in 1 Samuel 29:2 , they are popularly called in 1 Samuel 29:3 , 1 Samuel 29:4 , 1 Samuel 29:9 , sarim, "princes." Let the ark of the God of Israel be carried about unto Gath. Unwilling to part with so signal a proof of their victory, the lords of the Philistines determine to remove the ark to another locality, but thereby only made the miraculous nature of what was taking place more evident to all. Of Gath but little is known; but Jerome describes it as still a large village in his days, and as situated near the border of Judaea, on the road from Eleutheropolis to Gaza.

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