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Personalities of the Bible

From Adam to Nehemiah: The luminaries that shaped biblical narratives

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The Story of Adam and Eve in the Bible
Adam and Eve were the first humans, created by G‑d on the sixth day of Creation and ancestors to all of mankind.
Everything About Enosh
There is very little mention of him in the Torah, and most of what we know about him and his times is from Midrashic and Talmudic sources.
Methuselah
The man who lived 969 years
Methuselah was one of the Seven Shepherds, i.e. spiritual leaders of their respective eras.
14 Facts About Noah Every Jew Should Know
How much do you know about the righteous man whom G-d chose to survive a mighty deluge and repopulate the world with his children?
Nimrod, the Biblical Hunter
Before you go calling me names, it’s only fair that you familiarize yourself with all the details . . .
Who Was Terah?
18 Abraham Facts You Should Know
Abraham, the first of the patriarchs, was chosen by G-d to be the progenitor of His special nation.
13 Sarah Facts You Should Know
Sarah was the first of seven prophetesses and the mother of the Jewish nation.
10 Facts About Hagar Everyone Should Know
One of the most interesting women in the Bible is Hagar, Abraham's second wife, and the mother of Ishmael. How much do you know about her?
Ishmael: Abraham's Other Son
Abraham had two sons, Isaac and Ishmael, yet it was Isaac who was chosen to carry on Abraham’s legacy. Why?
Isaac: The Second Patriarch of the Bible
Isaac is the second of the patriarchs of the Jewish people. He is most famous for his central role when he was almost offered up as a sacrifice to G‑d
12 Facts Every Jew Should Know About Eliezer
Eliezer, the faithful servant of Abraham, is mentioned by name only once in Scripture, but there is lots to know about him.
Rebecca of the Bible
The sages likened her stalwart ability to rise above her environment to a rose growing among thorns
Who Was Deborah the Nurse?
And Why Did Jacob Mourn Her Death?
Deborah was there because Rebecca was fulfilling a promise she made to Jacob 36 years earlier.
14 Facts About Jacob Every Jew Should Know
The third and final patriarch of the Jewish people, he carries the by which the entire Jewish people became known.
Esau's Autobiography
A cautionary tale of violence and villainy
14 Facts About Esau Everyone Should Know
Esau was the twin of Jacob, but his polar opposite in many respects. Read this article to learn more about him.
12 Facts Every Jew Should Know About Rachel
Rachel is one of the four mothers of the Jewish people. How much do you know about her?
Diary of Leah
This is not the actual diary of Leah, wife of Jacob. To the best of my knowledge, no such document exists.
13 Leah Facts Everyone Should Know
See how much you really know about our fourth matriarch, Leah!
Who Were Bilhah and Zilpah?
Learn about the mothers of Dan, Naphtali, Gad, and Asher, four of the 12 Tribes of Israel
The Story of Joseph in the Bible
From Prisoner to Prince
Joseph was sold by his brothers to Egypt, where he ultimately became ruler of the land, second only to King Pharaoh.
10 Dinah Facts You Should Know
Torah tells us that Dinah, daughter of Jacob and and Leah, was the victim of rape. Oral traditions add to our understanding of this special woman.
12 Facts About Judah Every Jew Should Know
Judah was the fourth son of Jacob and Leah. Compared to a lion, Judah was the ancestor of the royal House of David. He made mistakes and rectified them, blazing a path for others to follow.
14 Reuben Facts You Should Know
The High Priest wore a breastplate with 12 precious stones, one for each of the tribes. The first stone, etched with Reuben’s name, was the red ruby.
12 Facts About Benjamin Everyone Should Know
Learn about the life and impact of Jacob's beloved, youngest son.
12 Tribes of Israel: The Shevatim
Jacob had twelve sons. The offspring of each these men became the twelve tribes of the nation of Israel.
8 Fascinating Facts About Serach, Daughter of Asher
Learn more about Serach, who is best-known for telling Jacob that Joseph was still alive.
A Mini Profile of Pharaoh of the Exodus
What do we know of Pharaoh, the evil king of Egypt who played a key role in our formation as a nation, from the enslavement to the Exodus?
Who Was Amram?
Amram, son of Kehot, led the Jewish people in Egypt and fathered three of the greatest leaders in Jewish history.
10 Facts About Amram You Should Know
Learn about the leader of our people in Egypt, who was the father of Moses, Aaron, and Miriam.
11 Fascinating Facts about Yocheved, Mother of Moses
Learn about the mother of Aaron, Miriam and Moses.
10 Facts About Miriam Everyone Should Know
Learn about Miriam, the prophetess of the Bible, whose life and legacy is celebrated until today.
Who Was Elisheva?
Elisheba appears just once in the Torah. To learn more, we dig deep into rabbinic and kabbalistic texts…
Jethro: Father-in-Law of Moses
As Described in the Bible, Midrash and Talmud
Jethro (or Yitro or Yisro) was a Midianite priest and the father-in-law of Moses. He is mentioned three times in the Pentateuch, once in the Prophets and in numerous places in rabbinic literature. Let us learn what we can about this fascinating figure.
Moses
The Biblical Prophet and Lawgiver Known as Moshe
The greatest prophet who ever lived, Moses (Moshe) transcribed the Torah (also known as the Five Books of Moses), the foundational text of Judaism.
17 Facts About Moses Every Jew Should Know
Moses was born in Egypt during the enslavement of the Jews. His parents, Amram and Yocheved, were from the illustrious tribe of Levi.
Aaron the High Priest
Aaron personified kindness. His life’s work was the endless and vigorous promotion of peace.
15 Facts About Aaron Every Jew Should Know
Want to learn more about the ancestor of virtually every Jew named Cohen? Here's your chance!
Nachshon ben Aminadav: The Man Who Jumped Into the Sea
When everyone else hesitated, he jumped into the swirling sea.
11 Facts About Nachshon, Son of Aminadav
Learn about the biblical character known for his bravery as the first to enter the Sea of Reeds.
Who Was Oholiab?
The Vice-Architect of the Tabernacle
The chief architect was Bezalel, and he was helped by many wise-hearted people. But only one of his helpers gets a special mention: Oholiab.
The Dynamic Duo: Betzalel and Aholiav
The artisans who made the Mishkan and its equipment
Only when Betzalel and Aholiav work in unity can we forge a connection with G-d.
Korah: The Rebel of the Bible
Korah takes a stance against Moses and Aaron, which ultimately led to his downfall.
Who Was Caleb?
Caleb (in hebrew, “Kalev”) was one of the most prominent and influential Jews to leave Egypt.
Phinehas: The Zealot of the Bible
Phinehas was brazenly zealous when he slayed Zimri, the licentious leader of the tribe of Simeon.
The Daughters of Zelophehad
“Why should our father’s name be eliminated from his family because he had no sons? Give us a landholding among our father’s brothers!”
8 Facts About the Daughters of Zelophehad
These five sisters treasured the Holy Land. Their grit and wisdom left its mark on Torah law.
Who Were Amalek and the Amalekites?
The ancient enemy of the Israelites, who lives on as a metaphor for scoffing and doubt.
Who Were Dathan and Abiram?
The Eternal Antagonists of the Bible
They were descendants of Reuben, mentioned in the Torah in conjunction with Korah’s rebellion. The Midrash tells us a lot more…
Joshua of the Bible
Joshua's mode had the unique advantage in that he achieved that the world itself should become G-dly.
Memoirs of Og, the Not-So-Gentle Giant
I have undertaken to commit my life experiences to writing, so that my place in history is not forgotten.
18 Facts About the “12 Spies”
Moses sent 12 spies to Canaan; 10 gave negative reports, causing 40 years of wandering.
The Story of Hannah
For an informed reading of I Samuel 1:1–2:10
The holiday of Rosh Hashanah has several names and themes. One of them is Yom Hazikaron, “the day of remembrance.”
17 Facts About Hannah (Chanah)
Discover how G-d answered Hannah's prayers, gifting her with the prophet Samuel.
10 Facts About Ruth Everyone Should Know
The quintessential convert who inspires genrations of women. What do you know about Ruth?
The Story of Samson and Delilah in the Bible
As told in Judges 13-16 and the Talmud
Samson was a nazarite who was endowed by G‑d with herculean strength, which he used to fight the Philistines.
The Tragic Downfall of Princess Michal
Michal was elevated to a position of great privilege and earned David's ire by rebuking him for what she considered unbecoming behavior for a monarch.
Nathan the Prophet
Nathan was a prominent prophet during the reign of King David and King Solomon.
David and Jonathan
For an informed reading of I Samuel 20:18–42
15 Life-Lessons From King David
David had a tumultous, yet ultimately triumphant life. He was the progenitor of a royal dynasty chosen by G‑d, but he suffered mightily from strife, especially at the hand of those closest to him.
Solomon: The Story of His Reign and Kingdom
King Solomon was the third king of Israel, who ruled Israel for 40 years and, while ushering peace and properity in his era, built the First Holy Temple.
Who Was Jezebel?
Her tenure as queen of Israel is equated with that of Queen Vashti of Persia, who was renowned for her ruthless and hedonistic lifestyle.
15 Elijah Facts You Should Know
Learn about Elijah, perhaps the most famous of the Jewish prophets.
Who Was Isaiah?
A scion of the royal Davidic dynasty, Isaiah became one of the preeminent prophets of Israel during the first Jewish commonwealth.
Nebuchadnezzar
The Evil Babylonian King Who Destroyed Jerusalem
Nebuchadnezzar is notorious for decimating the Jewish presence in the Land of Israel, exiling the vast majority of its denizens to Babylon, and destroying the first Holy Temple.
The Biblical Prophet Ezekiel
Ezekiel spent the bulk of his life in Babylonia, where he envisioned most of his prophecies.
Daniel the Prophet of the Bible
Daniel (3304-3399 / 457-362 BCE) was a celebrated Jewish scholar and master interpreter of dreams who was exiled to Babylon after the destruction of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem.
10 Facts About Gedaliah Everyone Should Know
Every year, we fast to commemorate the death of Gedaliah. How much do you know about this man, and why his passing was so tragic?
Who Was Mordecai?
14 Facts About a Hero of the Biblical Book of Esther
Mordechai was the leader of the Jews and cousin of Queen Esther, his co-hero in the Purim story.
12 Facts About the Wicked Haman
Haman was the evil Persian prime minister who schemed to have the Jews killed. He fell before Queen Esther and Mordecai, heroes of the Purim party.
15 Facts About Queen Esther
As told in the Book of Esther (the Purim story), Esther was a Jewish orphan who became queen of Persia, a position that allowed her to save her people from death.
Who Was Esther?
Heroine of the Purim Story
Celebrated on Purim, Esther was a Jewish maiden who was forced to become queen of Persia. She used her influence to save the Jewish people.
Did Achashverosh Rule the World?
We know that Achashverosh ruled over the sprawling Persian Empire. But just how big was his kingdom?
Ezra the Scribe
Ezra the Scribe headed the religious revival of the people living in Israel at the beginning of the Second Temple era.
Nehemiah
Nehemiah was appointed to be the governor of Israel during the beginning of the Second Temple period.
Who Was the Prophet Malachi?
Malachi (d. 312 BCE) was a member of the Great Assembly during the beginning of the second Jewish commonwealth and was considered the last Jewish prophet.
Who Was Iyov? Hero of the Book of Job
The Book of Job explores the morality of Divine justice through the experience of human suffering, primarily the suffering of Job himself.
Women of the Bible Quiz
Take a minute to see how well you know the great women who shaped the destiny of our people.
The 7 Prophetesses of Judaism
Our forebears were prophets. Later, prophets and prophetesses guided us, chided us and comforted us.
21 Jewish Prophets Everyone Should Know
Our forebears were prophets. Later, prophets and prophetesses guided us, chided us and comforted us.
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