Meaning of Bible Names

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Bible Meaning: Place of rest
Strong's Concordance #H7887

The word Shiloh used in the prophecy of Genesis 49:10 should be translated "He." This is because it is likely a symbolic reference to Jesus Christ.

Location of Shiloh in Ancient Israel Map

The Bible is silent regarding when the city of Shiloh was conquered by the Israelites after they entered the Promised Land. It also does not list it as being given to any of the tribes as an inheritance, although its location shows it was located in the land given to Ephraim.

Shiloh was the place where Joshua cast lots to divide the remaining Promised Land that existed west of the Jordan River (Joshua 18:1 - 19:48). Additionally, it was where the Levities were assigned cities throughout Israel (21:1 - 42).

Home of the Ark

The Ark of the Covenant and its tabernacle were setup in Shiloh in 1398 B.C., the year Joshua had lots cast for the remaining parts of the Promised Land (Joshua 18:1). The Ark remained in the city until 1085 B.C. It was in this eventful year that Samuel began to judge Israel and the Ark was taken in battle by the Philistines (1Samuel 4:1 - 17).

God (somewhat humorously) punished the Philistines for roughly seven months for possessing the Ark (1Samuel 5 - 6:1). Israel, when they finally received back the Ark, took it to Kirjath-jearim (1Samuel 6:21 - 7:2).

What happened to it?

Very little is mentioned in the Bible about Shiloh after the Ark left it in 1085. God does state he forsook his tabernacle in the city (Psalm 78:60). Later, he says he allowed the city to be destroyed because of the wickedness of his people (Jeremiah 7:12 - 14, 26:6, 9).

Though not directly recorded, Shiloh was almost certainly destroyed by the Philistines during their war with Israel in 1085. This would explain why neither the Philistines nor Israelites brought the Ark back to the city. Although Shiloh was eventually rebuilt after this conflict (see 1Kings 14:2, Jeremiah 41:5), it never returned to the prominence and glory it had once held.

Important verses


Genesis 49:10
The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh (He) come: and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.


Joshua 18:1, 10
And the whole congregation of the children of Israel assembled together at Shiloh, and set up the tabernacle of the congregation there. And the land was subdued before them.

And Joshua cast lots for them in Shiloh before the LORD: and there Joshua divided the land unto the children of Israel according to their divisions.

Judges 18:31
And they set them up Micah's graven image, which he made, all the time that the house of God was in Shiloh.

Judges 21:12, 21
And they found among the inhabitants of Jabeshgilead four hundred young virgins, that had known no man by lying with any male: and they brought them unto the camp to Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan.

And see, and, behold, if the daughters of Shiloh come out to dance in dances, then come ye out of the vineyards, and catch you every man his wife . . .

1Samuel 3:21
And the LORD appeared again in Shiloh: for the LORD revealed himself to Samuel in Shiloh by the word of the LORD.

1Samuel 4:3
And when the people were come into the camp, the elders of Israel said, Wherefore hath the LORD smitten us to day before the Philistines? Let us fetch the ark of the covenant of the LORD out of Shiloh unto us, that, when it cometh among us, it may save us out of the hand of our enemies.

1Kings 2:27
So Solomon thrust out Abiathar from being priest unto the LORD: that he might fulfil the word of the LORD, which he spake concerning the house of Eli in Shiloh.

1Kings 14:2
And Jeroboam said to his wife, Arise, I pray thee, and disguise thyself, that thou be not known to be the wife of Jeroboam: and get thee to Shiloh: behold, there is Ahijah the prophet, which told me that I should be king over this people.

Psalm 78:60
So that he forsook the tabernacle of Shiloh, the tent which he placed among men:

Jeremiah 7:12, 14
But go ye now unto my place which was in Shiloh, where I set my name at the first, and see what I did to it for the wickedness of my people Israel . . .

Therefore will I do unto this house (Jerusalem's temple), which is called by my name, wherein ye trust, and unto the place which I gave to you and to your fathers, as I have done to Shiloh.

Further Bible study:

Meaning of Biblical Names
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Series Notes
Scripture quotes are taken from
the King James translation.
The definition of each listing
is derived from a variety of sources.

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