1 Samuel 2:14 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 Samuel 2:14, NIV: and would plunge the fork into the pan or kettle or caldron or pot. Whatever the fork brought up the priest would take for himself. This is how they treated all the Israelites who came to Shiloh.

1 Samuel 2:14, ESV: and he would thrust it into the pan or kettle or cauldron or pot. All that the fork brought up the priest would take for himself. This is what they did at Shiloh to all the Israelites who came there.

1 Samuel 2:14, KJV: And he struck it into the pan, or kettle, or caldron, or pot; all that the fleshhook brought up the priest took for himself. So they did in Shiloh unto all the Israelites that came thither.

1 Samuel 2:14, NASB: And he would thrust it into the pan, or kettle, or caldron, or pot; everything that the fork brought up, the priest would take for himself. They did so in Shiloh to all the Israelites who came there.

1 Samuel 2:14, NLT: the servant would stick the fork into the pot and demand that whatever it brought up be given to Eli's sons. All the Israelites who came to worship at Shiloh were treated this way.

1 Samuel 2:14, CSB: and plunge it into the container, kettle, cauldron, or cooking pot. The priest would claim for himself whatever the meat fork brought up. This is the way they treated all the Israelites who came there to Shiloh.

What does 1 Samuel 2:14 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

The custom of the priests of Israel at Shiloh during this time—during the era of the judges (Judges 2:16–19; 21:25)—was apparently a way for the priests to get an extra portion of food from each person's animal sacrifice to the Lord.

The sacrifice being described is the peace offering, designed by God to be shared between the Lord, the priests, and those bringing the sacrifice (Leviticus 7:11–18). The portion intended for the priests was the breasts and the right thigh of the animal (Leviticus 7:29–36). Over time, the priests had adopted what may have been the practice of other religions. The priest's servant would come while the people were boiling the meat for their portion of the sacrifice and plunge a trident-style fork into the pot. The priest would keep whatever meat came out on the fork.

This may have been the common custom of the time for religious sacrifices, but it was a corruption of the priest's power and a clear violation of the commands of the Lord. These errors didn't stop there, however.