The Edomites By Charles River Editors

  • Narrated by: Delaine Daniels
  • Length: 2 hrs and 3 mins
  • Release date: 12-05-19

The Edomites AudioBook Summary

“These are the kings who ruled in the land of Edom before a king ruled the children of Israel. And Bela ben Beor ruled in Edom, and the name of his city was Dinhabah. And Bela died, and Jobab ben Zerah from Bozrah ruled in his place. And Jobab died, and Husham of the land of Temani ruled in his place. And Husham died, and Hadad ben Bedad, who struck Midian in the field of Moab, ruled in his place, and the name of his city was Avith. And Hadad died, and Samlah of Masrekah ruled in his place. And Samlah died, and Saul of Rehoboth on the river ruled in his place. And Saul died, and Baal-hanan ben Achbor ruled in his place. And Baal-hanan ben Achbor died, and Hadar ruled in his place, and the name of his city was Pau, and his wife’s name was Mehetabel bat Matred bat Mezahab. And these are the names of the clans of Esau by their families, by their places, by their names: clan Timnah, clan Alvah, clan Jetheth, clan Aholibamah, clan Elah, clan Pinon, clan Kenaz, clan Teman, clan Mibzar, clan Magdiel, clan Iram.” (Genesis 36)

The ancient Edomites were just one of the many cultures inhabiting the Levant during the Late Bronze Age and early Iron Age, but they remain known thousands of years later thanks to mentions in the Old Testament. The Bible indicates that the Edomites and their kingdom had a complex relationship first with the Hebrews and then with the Israelites. According to the Bible, the Edomites were descended from a different branch of the Israelites’ family tree and as such were treated as “brothers” at times, but at other times they were sworn enemies.

Given those facts, understanding the true nature of the Edomites and their culture has been somewhat problematic for historians due to the lack of source material. Most of the references to the Edomites come from the Bible, which, while historically accurate about many points, is clearly biased against the enemies of Israel. Thus, scholars have also turned to texts from the Egyptians and Assyrians and excavations from the Levant to form a more comprehensive image of a culture that in many ways was very similar to that of the Israelites.

Such assessments reveal that the Edomites’ origins can be traced back to the wider Canaanite culture that was dominant in the Levant in the Late Bronze Age. During that time, the Edomites came into contact with the Egyptians and also reencountered the Hebrews. After coming back into contact with the Hebrews, the Edomites seemingly faded from the historical record until the creation of the Kingdom of Israel in the early 1st millennium BCEE. The Edomites then played a subservient and clearly inferior role to the Israelites, at least politically, until the time was right and they could make a major play for their longtime rival’s land.

Ultimately, the Edomites flourished for several centuries only to suffer the same fate as the Israelites. They were swept up in the storm of wars and migrations that characterized the Near East from the end of the Bronze Age until the dominance of the Achaemenid Persian Empire.

File Size: 113.43 MB


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