Well, it has been over a month since the last time I have given any sort of update on my book. This is much longer than I would have hopped to go, but alas that is how things are. I have yet to finish this section, but hopefully that will happen soon so I can begin work on Aram and start editing! I would thought I would be less surprised about how long this section is taking, but I suppose I never really considered just how many people are connected to Arphaxad. I would think that just about everyone knows that the Israelites, Ishmaelites, and Edomites come from his line, namely that of Abraham, but there are frankly just so many more, more than I initially even planned for.
Some who may have written this book, and as I have seen those who have written similar books do, would have probably skipped over some of these people. They do not seeem important enough to the greater scope of history. Why bother to write about Abram’s brothers? Why worry about the descendants of Lot? Do the Edomites actually matter to the rest of Scripture, let alone world history? How do other people mentioned in the Bible, like the Amalekites, actually play in? The Midianites? The book of Job?
Believe it or not, a lot of them do.
To begin, Edom had more people come from him than just the Edomites. The Amalekites and the Temanites also come from him. And while they may not seem all that important, the Amalekites were one of the most infamous enemies of the Israelites and may have been a thorn in their side possibly to the time of Esther. And many people may have not have heard of the Temanites, but the only other Eliphaz mentioned in the Bible – for their were only two – was a friend of Job, descended from Eliphaz, son of Edom and father of Teman. And while we are on the subject of Job, another of his friends, a Shuhite, was descended from a son of Abraham named Shuah. This helps locate Job, the man from, Uz, where and when he might have been located, probably east of Israel in Edom, and why he is so closely connected to the Scriptures at all. Additionally, Midian, a sometimes ally/sometimes foe of Israel, was in fact a people who were in large part descended from Abraham from his wife Keturah. They made up many different groups of nomads throughout the southeastern part of Saudi Arabia. Did you know that Abraham actually has eight sons, not just two? Most do not and I plainly forgot, let alone knew the implications of each people. This is not even to mention the Moabites and Ammonites, though I have yet to research these “sons” of Lot.
While most consider the Arabs to be this “single group” in regards to “ethnicity”, this is not necessarily so. In the north many are from Asshur, Nahor and his family, Aram, Nimrod, and even Arphaxad. In the south, many are actually descended from Cush, Joktan, and others. In the middle, there is Madai and Elam on one side, and Edom, Moab, Ammon, Amalek, Philistia, and so many more, not to even the aforementioned Canaanites. These people are a diverse group, and their connection to Abraham through Ishmael and Keturah has only just begun to be uncovered. It is amazing and overwhelming. There is so much history, so much genealogy to be found in the Middle East. It is little wonder why Mesopotamia is referred to as the Cradle of Civilization.
All of this is to make a partial point that I have been wanting to make with these posts and my book on a large-scale. Each of these groups in the Middle East, on the level that I am discussing them on, could be divided into different people groups. Yet even that can be difficult as they intermarried so often. For example, Edom had two Canaanite wives and one who was daughter to Ishmael. Boaz, of the line of Judah and Christ, married a Moabitess. This is not to mention all of the intermarrying before that – from Midianite Zaporah to different Canaanite women during the Judges. And this is just for Israel. The list could go on, but the point I make is this: while thier “nationality” is often called different, for most of these people groups, their parentage is the same. As I mentioned at the beginning, why bother to account for all of these groups? Because at the end of this, they are one of the many that made up what is today largely known as the Middle East. While the land is under different names today, all those people are basically descended from those original settlers in one way or another. Moreover, all of them are still traced back to these three sons: Shem, Ham, and Japheth. In fact, I’ve mentioned descendants from all three of these sons in this post as all leaving descendants in the Middle East.
We are all of one blood, and that is something that not only should be remembered but also repeated in daily life. There is so much strife in the world over race and whatnot, yet this is strife among brothers, among siblings. No matter where you go, especially today, it is difficult to find a group that is not of “mixed heritage”. And while it is good to be interested or proud of where your family came from, everyone in the world is related through these three sons of Noah, and in turn, we are all children of Adam and Eve. This should be our focus: to remember that we are all of one blood and because of that we should treat, think of, and love each other as such.
God’s blessings, my family,