The ancient Shiloh location today and in the Bible
The Shiloh location is a significant site on our Israel tours and was the resting place of the Ark of the Covenant in the time of Hannah, Samuel and Eli the Priest. Hannah brought her baby Samuel to Eli the Priest in Shiloh, saying, “For this boy I prayed, and the Lord has given me my petition which I asked of Him. So I have also dedicated him to the Lord; as long as he lives he is dedicated to the Lord.” And he worshiped the Lord there – 1 Samuel 1:27-28. (See Hannah’s Prayer video below)
In the book of 1 Samuel, Samuel is given a vision about the destruction of Eli’s family because Eli had allowed his sons to continue in sin without stopping them. Shiloh becomes a place where the Lord is moving through Samuel. “The LORD continued to appear at Shiloh, and there he revealed himself to Samuel through his word” 1 Samuel 3:21. However, the Ark of the Covenant is eventually moved from Shiloh and then captured in war. Eli dies suddenly in Shiloh after hearing that the ark was stolen and that both of his sons had died. “When he mentioned the ark of God, Eli fell backward off his chair by the side of the gate. His neck was broken and he died, for he was an old man, and he was heavy. He had led Israel forty years” 1 Samuel 4:18. Eli’s family is punished just as the Lord had spoken to Samuel.
Today in the Shiloh location, there are still fragments from broken plates and vessels that were once used to hold oil while worshiping at the Ark of the Covenant site. The holy vessels were broken afterward to ensure that the vessel did not become someone’s household item. Travelers will also notice the “bowl” shape around Shiloh. This gave everyone a good vantage point to view the Ark of the Covenant site because they could be on the surrounding higher hills and look down into the “bowl” where the Ark was set up. Join us on a Christian Israel tour to view the Shiloh location and surrounding Holy Land sites.