Old Testament People

Goliath to Melchizedek

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Goliath
Goliath was one of five giant Philistine brothers. The Bible states he was at least 9 feet 3 inches tall (2.82 meters). In battle he wore a protective coat that weighed at least 78 U.S. pounds (35.4 kilograms) and threw a spear that was 26 feet (7.9 meters) long. Considered the Philistine's greatest fighter when a young David fought and killed him. He is one of three people in Scripture who have the mark of 666 as one of God's adversaries!

Habakkuk
One of the minor prophets of the Old Testament. Gave prophecies concerning destruction of Chaldeans and against greed, graft, idolatry and aggression.

Hagar
Hagar was Sarah's Egyptian handmaid she gave to her husband Abraham in order to produce a child and heir. Hagar gave birth to Ishmael who was not considered Abraham's firstborn heir when God healed Sarah's womb and allowed her to produce Isaac. Hagar lived with the couple until Ishmael was about 14 years old.

Does Goliath's spear still exist?
How does God use barren women?
Who are all the Minor Prophets?

Haggai
One of the minor prophets. Gave prophecies concerning the restoration of Jerusalem's temple and the neglect of those rebuilding it.


David rejoicing after killing Goliath
David thanks God after killing Goliath
18th century painting

Ham
The youngest of Noah's three children. Survived the great flood in Noah's ark. His sons were Cush, Mizraim, Phut and Canaan (from which the land of Canaan gets its name). Contrary to what some believe, Ham did not represent one of three races God wanted to save after the flood.

Hannah
Barren woman who prayed to God for a child and promised to dedicate him to His service. She miraculously gave birth to Samuel, one of the most important prophets in the Old Testament.

Heber
Heber is also referred to as Eber. He was the great-grandson of Shem and lived from 2276 to 1812 B.C. It is believed that from his name the term 'Hebrews,' used to denote those claiming descent from Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, is derived.

Hiram
King of Tyre who assisted King David in building his house. He greatly aided King Solomon in building Jerusalem's temple by sending him craftsmen as well as materials such as wood, precious gold and silver.

Hosea
One of the minor prophets who warned Israel about their adultery, idolatry and drunkenness.

Hoshea
The last king of the northern ten tribes of Israel (the Kingdom of Israel). He ruled from 732 to 723 B.C. When Samaria fell to Assyrian King Shalmaneser V the kingdom he ruled was taken captive to Assyria.

Isaac
Isaac was the only child produced by Abraham and Sarah. He was miraculously born after Sarah was healed of being barren. God tested Abraham's faith by commanding he sacrifice Isaac (Genesis 22). Isaac's wife Rebekah born him two sons, Esau and Jacob. He lived longer, at 180 years, than his father Abraham (175) or son Jacob (147).

Isaiah
One of the Bible's major prophets. Isaiah served during reigns of kings Azariah, Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah. He foretold the coming and suffering of Jesus (Isaiah 52:13 - 53:12). Christ began his ministry by quoting Isaiah 61's words related to the Biblical year of Jubilee (Luke 4:16 - 21). Learn more about this prophet in our detailed study of Isaiah's life!

Ishmael
Abraham's eldest son by Hagar, Sarah's maidservant. Ishmael grew up to be a "wild man" (Genesis 16:12). He was cast into the wilderness with his mother when he mocked Isaac. God made him into a great nation and gave him twelve sons who were princes of their tribes (Genesis 17:20).

Jacob
Jacob was the son of Isaac and twin-brother to Esau. He bought Esau's birthright blessing for bowl of stew (Genesis 25:29 - 34) but later felt it necessary to steal it by pretending to be Esau in front of their Father Jacob. Jacob flees Esau by traveling to a relative named Laban, where he will work fourteen years in order to marry Rachel. Jacob also wrestles with a man who is actually a pre-incarnate Jesus and has name changed to Israel (Genesis 32:22 - 32).

Jacob's sons, which represent the tribes of Israel, are Asher, Benjamin, Dan, Gad, Isaachar, Judah, Naphtali, Reuben, Simeon, Zebulon. Levi, though a son, is usually not listed as a tribe due to their being made priests of the Eternal. Although Joseph was also a son of Jacob his two sons Ephraim and Manasseh, whom Jacob gave the birthright blessing (Genesis 48), are listed as tribes instead of him.

Japheth
One of Noah's three children who survived the great flood in the ark. His sons were Gomer, Magog, Javan, Tubal and others. He may have been Noah's oldest son (Genesis 10:21).

Jehoiachin
Jehoiachin was King of Judah who ruled for only 3 months from 598 to 597 B.C. After Jerusalem fell at the hands of King Nebuchadnezzar he is captured and taken as prisoner to Babylon.

Jeremiah
Jeremiah is considered one of the Old Testament's three major prophets. He was destined to be a prophet before he was born (Jeremiah 1:4 - 5). He foretold, and lamented at, the desolation of Jerusalem and Judah. He was imprisoned by Judah's King Zedekiah but released by Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. He prophecies foretold the uffering of Jesus. Learn more about this prophet in our detailed study of Jeremiah's life!

Jeroboam
Jeroboam was the first king of the newly created northern ten tribes of Israel (Kingdom of Israel). He reigned over a divided Israel, whose capital was originally Shechem, from 930 to 909 B.C. He set up a pagan golden calve god in Dan and Bethel to keep people from worshipping in Jerusalem (1Kings 12). He set a precedence of idolatry and leading Israel to sin that the Lord would reference many times (1Kings 16:2, 19, 31, etc.)

Jesse
Jesse was the grandson of Boaz and Ruth. He was the father of King David, who was his youngest of eight children.

Jezebel
Jezebel was the wife of evil King Ahab. She is considered one of, if not the greatest, most evil females found in the Old Testament! She encouraged her husband to pursue pagan gods and to lead Israel to do the same. Her evil was so renowned that her name was used in the New Testament as a symbol of someone who leads others into sin (Revelation 2:20). She was bold enough to threaten Elijah, one of Scripture's greatest prophets, with death. She ultimately suffered a horribly death that was prophecied to occur as a penalty for her disobedience.

Joab
Joab was the son of David's sister and commander of David's army. He had several significant military successes. Joab played a key role in David's plot to have Uriah, Bathsheba's husband, killed in battle to cover up his adultery with her (2Samuel 11). Joab murdered Abner in revenge for the death of his brothers (2Samuel 3). David, because Joab did not support Solomon becoming the next king, commanded his son to kill him (1Kings 2).

Job
Job, and not Moses, wrote the earliest book found in the Bible. He was wealthy and considered righteous when Satan challenged God regarding the sincerity of his obedience (Job 1). The great adversary was allowed to take away Job's possessions and kill his children. After a period of trial and testing (made worse by his 'friends'), the Eternal personally confronts Job and causes him to repent. He is ultimately considered one of the three most righteous Old Testament people (Ezekiel 14:14, 20).

Joel
One of the minor prophets whose prophecies parallel what is in book of Revelation. Joel gave prophecies regarding future judgment and punishment of mankind.


Jonah the Prophet
Jonah the Prophet
Lorenzetto, 1519 - 20

Jonah
Jonah was a prophet sent to warn Nineveh of their impending judgment for their sins. Jonah initially refuses to warn the city but God has him swallowed by a great fish and changes his mind. While he is in the "great fish" Jonah cries out for help and after three days and nights (a type of Jesus' death) the fish vomits him out on a beach near Nineveh. He then warns the city as God commanded.

Jonathan
Jonathan was the son of King Saul who was also a very close personal friend of King David. He died in battle with his father.

Joseph
Joseph was the favorite son of Jacob. His mother was Rachel. He received the Biblically famous coat of many colors from Jacob (Genesis 37). After being sold as a slave by his brothers he became a prisoner in Egypt. His interpretation of the dreams of Pharaoh, revealed to him by God, ultimately leads to him being made overseer of Egypt (Genesis 41). In Egypt he produces two sons named Manasseh and Ephraim. He saves his entire family by having them move to Egypt to avoid a great famine that came upon the land.

Joseph is also the name of Jesus' stepfather and the husband of Mary. See our fascinating in-depth article about Joseph, the man God choose to be the stepfather of mankind's Savior!

Joshua
Joshua led the children of Israel into the Promised Land after the death of Moses. He led and won many battles in order to thrust out the people who occupied Israel's inheritance. He was instrumental in dividing up Canaan among the tribes of Israel and was Israel's first Judge.

Josiah
Josiah, who reigned for thirty-one years, was one of the best kings of Judah. He helped restore the true worship of the Lord to Judah. He was fatally wounded in battle by a random arrow.

Judah
Judah was Jacob's fourth son by Leah. He interceded to stop his other brothers from killing Joseph (Genesis 37) and instead selling him as a slave. He had incest with his daughter-in-law (Genesis 38). The tribe of Judah took the lead in conquering the Promised Land (Judges 1).

Keturah
Keturah is reference in the Bible as one of Abraham's concubine. She likely married him after the death of Sarah. Keturah bore Abraham six children whose names were Zimran, Jokshan, Medan, Midian, Ishbak and Shuah.

Laban
Laban was the brother of Abraham whose sister was the wife of Isaac. He did not keep his agreement with Jacob who promised to work for him seven years in order to marry Rachel (Genesis 29).

Leah
Leah was the eldest daughter of Laban. Although Jacob wanted to marry Rachel, Laban deceived him into taking Leah as his first wife (Genesis 29). Leah bore Jacob six boys and a girl whose names were Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Isaachar, Zebulun and Dinah.

Levi
Levi was Jacob's third son by Leah. The tribe became dedicated to serving God and his tabernacle during the time of Moses. Although God command they were not to receive an inheritance in the land of Canaan, they did get cities throughout Israel. Their livelihood, because of their service to the Eternal, came through the tithes and offerings made by the other Israelite tribes.

Lot
Lot's uncle was Abraham. Lot was saved out of Sodom and Gomorrah by two angels before it was destroyed by God. He sadly witnessed his wife turn into a pillar of salt for her disobedience (Genesis 19). Lot's two daughters, after the two sinful cities were destroyed, got him drunk and had sex with him. Their incest produced the founders of the Moabite and Ammonite peoples.

Malachi
Malachi was the last of the Bible's minor prophets to write a book (c. 400 B.C.). He gave prophecies regarding being prepared for God's Messenger, Jesus Christ. He spoke against divorce, adultery, priestly neglect of duties and robbing the Eternal by not tithing.

Manasseh
Manasseh was the name of one of Joseph's son born in Egypt.

Manasseh is also the name of one of Judah's kings who ruled longer (55 years) than any other monarch of either Israel or Judah. He is consider one of Israel's worst kings as he encouraged the worship of many false gods. He also indulged in witchcraft, worked with evil spirits, and even sacrificed his own son by fire to Moloch (2Kings 21).

Melchizedek (Melchizedec)
Abraham tithed to Melchizedek, who name means "king of righteousness" and "king of peace" (Hebrews 7). Paul states Melchizedek did not have a father or mother, was never born, never died, and is a priest forever. The Bible records that Jesus is a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek (Hebrews 5).

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Old Testament People
Aaron to Gideon
Goliath to Melchizedek
Methusaleh to Samson
Sarah to Zipporah
Additional Study Materials
Abraham's Journey to Canaan Map
Where did people migrate after the flood?
What is the Order of Melchizedek?
Important New Testament People!

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