Dictionary of Bible Names

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Bible Meaning: Weighing place, the fire of infamy I shall be weighed
Strong's Concordance #H831

Ashkelon, spelled Askelon in three Old Testament verses (Judges 1:18, 1Samuel 6:17, 2Samuel 1:20), was one of the five major cities controlled by the Philistines in the southwestern part of Canaan (Joshua 13:3). Although it was given to the tribe of Judah as an inheritance in the Promised Land, the Philistines dominated it for many years.

Samson, angered that his wedding guests had cheated in discovering the answer to a riddle he gave them, went down to Ashkelon and killed thirty men (Judges 14:17 - 19). The minor prophet Zephaniah prophesied that the city would someday be turned into pastureland (Zephaniah 2:4, 7).

Important Verses

Judges 1:18
Also Judah took Gaza with the coast thereof, and Askelon with the coast thereof, and Ekron with the coast thereof.

Philistine Territory Map
Location of Ashkelon in Philistine Land

Judges 14:19
And the Spirit of the Lord came upon him, and he went down to Ashkelon, and slew thirty men of them, and took their spoil, and gave change of garments unto them which expounded the riddle. And his anger was kindled, and he went up to his father's house.

Jeremiah 25:20
And all the mingled people, and all the kings of the land of Uz, and all the kings of the land of the Philistines, and Ashkelon, and Azzah, and Ekron, and the remnant of Ashdod.

Jeremiah 47:5 - 7
Baldness is come upon Gaza: Ashkelon is cut off with the remnant of their valley: how long wilt thou cut thyself?

O thou sword of the Lord, how long will it be ere thou be quiet? put up thyself into thy scabbard, rest, and be still. How can it be quiet, seeing the Lord hath given it a charge against Ashkelon, and against the sea shore? there hath he appointed it.

Amos 1:8
And I will cut off the inhabitant from Ashdod, and him that holdeth the sceptre from Ashkelon, and I will turn mine hand against Ekron: and the remnant of the Philistines shall perish, saith the Lord God.

Zephaniah 2:3 - 4, 7
Seek ye the Lord, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the Lord's anger.

For Gaza shall be forsaken, and Ashkelon a desolation: they shall drive out Ashdod at the noon day, and Ekron shall be rooted up . . .

And the coast shall be for the remnant of the house of Judah: they shall feed thereupon: in the houses of Ashkelon shall they lie down in the evening: for the Lord their God shall visit them, and turn away their captivity.

Zechariah 9:3 - 5
And Tyrus did build herself a strong hold, and heaped up silver as the dust, and fine gold as the mire of the streets. Behold, the Lord will cast her out, and he will smite her power in the sea; and she shall be devoured with fire.

Ashkelon shall see it, and fear: Gaza also shall see it, and be very sorrowful, and Ekron: for her expectation shall be ashamed: and the king shall perish from Gaza . . .

Additional Studies

Dictionary of Biblical Names
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Series Notes
References are based on the
King James Bible translation (KJV).