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Word Count: 901 Send Article To Friend Print/Use Article

Armor and Trophies
by Don Costello  
5/23/2008 / Bible Studies

1 Samuel 31:8-10
And it came to pass on the marrow, when the Philistines came to strip the slain, that they found Saul and his three sons fallen in Mount Gilboa. And they cut off his head, and stripped off his armour, and sent into the land of the Philistines round about, to publish it in the house of their idols, and among the people.
And they put his armour in the house of Ashtorouth: and they fastened his body to the wall of Bethshan.

1 Chronicles 10:8-10

And it came to pass on the marrow, when the Philistines came to strip the slain, that they found Saul and his sons fallen in Mount Gilboa.
And when they had stripped him, they took his head, and his armour, and sent into the land of the Philistines round about, to carry tidings unto their idols, and to the people.
And they put his armour in the house of their gods, and fastened his head in the temple of Dagon.

1.1 Samuel 31:9 "and they sent into the land of the Philistines round about, to publish it in the house of their idols, and among the people.

a. publish [1319 * basar] [Strong's: to announce, preach, shew forth good tidings]

b. These people were very religious. The preaching, the announcing, or the showing of the good tidings that Saul their enemy was dead and his body and armour and that of his sons could be seen in their temples, all this was being accomplished in their houses of worship, where they worshipped their devils. Check out 1 Corinthians 10:20.

c. NIV: 1 Samuel 31:9 "and they sent messengers throughout the land of the Philistines to proclaim the news in the temple of their idols and among the people."

d. NIV: 1 Chronicles 10:9 'to proclaim the news among their idols and their people."

e. They were trophies of the enemies of God's people. After they were slain, Saul and his sons bodily members, were treated as spiritual trophies in the houses of their gods. When we sin against God and fall in front of the world, we become trophies of the enemy.

2. 1 Samuel 31:10 "And they put his armour in the house of Ashtoroth: and they fastened his body to the wall of Bathshan."

a. The body and head and armour of Saul all went to different locations..

1). His body went to Bethshan: 1 Samuel 31:10.

a). Bethshan [1052 * Beyth Shean][Strong's: house of ease.]

2). His armour went to the house of Ashtoroth: 1 Samuel 31:10.

a). Ashstoroth [6252 * Ashtarowth][Strong's: a Sidonian god.]

3). His head went to the temple of Dagon: 1 Chronicles 10:10.

a). Dagon [1712 * Dagown][Strong's: the fish god of the Philistines.]

4). It seems that these three items went throughout the Philistine nation and then were permanently fixed to these three locations.

5). The bodies of his sons were included.

a). 1 Samuel 31:12 "All the valiant men arose, and went all night, and took the body of Saul and the bodies of his sons from the wall of Beth-shan, and came to Jabesh, and burnt them there."

3. It was not uncommon to keep the armour and even the heads of the enemy.

a. David kept Goliath's head and armour.

1). 1 Samuel 17:54 "And David took the head of the Philistine, and brought it to Jerusalem; but he put his armour in his tent."

b. The sword ended up in Nob, the city of the priests.

1). 1 Samuel 21:1, 8, 9.

4. At the news of the deaths of Saul and Jonathan, David wrote a song and in the song he implored the the news not be published in Gath or Askelon because it would cause the Philistines to rejoice.

a. 2 Samuel 1:20 "Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in the streets of Askelon; lest the daughters of the uncircumsized triumph.

1). rejoice [8055 * samach][Strongs: to brighten up, cheer up, be or make glad, cause to rejoice.]

2). triumph [5937 * alaz][Strong's; to jump for joy.]

3). No doubt the rejoicing would be similar to the rejoicing recorded in Judges 16:23, 24.

a). Judges 16:23, 24 "Then the lords of the Philistines gathered them together for to offer a great sacrifice unto Dagon their god and to rejoice: for they said, Our god hath delivered Samson our enemy into our hand.
And when the people saw him, they praised their god: for they said, Our god hath delivered into our hands our enemy, and the destroyer of our country, which slew many of us.

5. It is spiritual irony that our bodily members are weapons.

a. Romans 6:13 "Neither yield ye your members snstruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive unto from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God."

1). yield [3936 * paristano] [W.E.Vine's: to present, is translated to yield.]

2). The Greek word for "yield" is the same word used in Romans 12:1 for "present". In light of that, as we are obedient to God's word, we are presenting our bodily members to God, as "weapons", Romans 6:13; as "servants", Romans 6:16; and as "sacrifices", Romans 12:1.

3). instruments [3696 * hoplon][Zodhiates: in the plural, standing for weapons of warfare.]

4). Jeremiah 51:20 "Thou art my battle axe and weapons of war"

My name is Don Costello. Ever since I received Christ in November of 1976 I have had a passion to study and know God's word.My wife Melissa and I have 5 children.

My e-mail address is

I have a blog located at:

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