(Eb·en·eʹzer) [Stone of Help].
1. A site near which Israel was twice defeated by the Philistines, resulting not only in the death of 34,000 Israelites, including Hophni and Phinehas, but also in enemy capture of the ark of the covenant. News of this latter event precipitated the death of Eli the priest. (1Sa 4:1-11, 17, 18; 5:1) Scholars tentatively place Ebenezer at Majdel Yaba, 4 km (2.5 mi) SE of Aphek in the Plain of Sharon (where the Philistines were encamped).
2. The name given to a stone erected by Samuel more than 20 years after the events mentioned in the preceding chapter, likely to commemorate Israel’s victory over the Philistines by God’s help. (1Sa 7:2, 12) Although its exact location is today unknown, it was apparently a number of miles SE of No. 1 above, “between Mizpah and Jeshanah.”