Philistines means in the bible: An original tribe from Caphtor Crete or possibly part of Egypt 9:7. They occupied the Mediterranean lowland from Joppa up to the Egyptian desert before Abraham Gen. 21.32. The confederation consisted of five cities: Ashdod (Gaza, Ashkelon), Gath and Ekron. Each city was under the control of its “lord.” There was much conflict between the Israelites and them for many years. In 734 B.C., Tiglath-pileser conquered them. Later, their country was part of the Persian Empire. In New Testament times it was annexed by the Roman province Syria. It is strange that the title of this territory, which was once an enemy of Jews, has been changed to one common title: Palestine.
(in Bible Dictionary)