Rachel to Shem
Important Old Testament People

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This page lists information on important Old Testament people from Rachel to Shem. Other people who lived before the birth of Christ and played a role in Biblical history are listed at the bottom of this article.

Rachel
Genesis 29:6 - 31, 30:1 - 25, 31:4 - 34, 33:1 - 7, 35:16 - 25, etc.

Rachel was the youngest daughter of Laban and Jacob's (Israel's) favorite wife. Jacob agreed to work seven years for Laban in order to marry her but was deceived into first marrying Rachel's older sister Leah instead. He then willing chose to work a total of fourteen years in order to wed her. Rachel, after being healed of being barren, gave birth to Joseph. She later died giving birth to Benjamin, the first woman recorded in the Bible as dying in childbirth.

Rahab
Joshua 2:1, 3, 6:17, 23, 25, Psalm 87:4, 89:10, etc.

Rahab was a harlot who received and assisted the spies sent by Joshua to check out Jericho (Joshua 2). She is listed in the lineage of Jesus (Matthew 1:5).

Rebekah
Genesis 22:23, 24:15 - 67, 25:20 - 28, 26:7 - 35, etc.

Rebekah was the wife of Isaac. She was healed of being barren after her and her husband prayed to God. She gave birth to twins boys named Esau and Jacob.

Rehoboam
1Kings 11:43, 12:1 - 27, 14:21 - 31, 15:6, etc.

Rehoboam was the son and heir to the throne of his father King Solomon. After Solomon's death his unwillingness to lighten the heavy tax burden imposed by his father (1Kings 12) caused Israel to split into two distinct kingdoms. He ruled over the newly-separated Kingdom of Judah (composed of the tribes of Judah, Benjamin and priestly tribe of Levi) from 930 to 917 B.C.

Reuben
Genesis 29:32, 30:14, 35:22 - 23, 37:21 - 29, etc.

Reuben is the firstborn of Jacob through Leah. Jacob cursed him after he committed adultery with his wife Bilhah. After Reuben was deprived of his birthright it was given to Joseph's two sons who lived in Egypt.

Ruth
Ruth 1:4, 14, 16, 22, 2:2, 8, 21 - 22, etc.

Ruth was a non-Israelite woman who, after becoming a widow, went to Bethlehem with mother-in-law Naomi. In Bethlehem she meets Boaz, her future husband, while gleaning from his field (Ruth 2). She eventually marries him and becomes the great-grandmother of King David (Ruth 4). She is one of only two woman whose writings appear in the Bible.

Samson
Judges 13:24, 14 - 16, Hebrews 11:32

Samson, the strongest man recorded in the Bible, spent his entire life battling the Philistines, Israel's greatest and most enduring enemy. A Nazarite from birth, He possessed miraculous strength symbolized by his hair, a secret he foolishly revealed to a harlot named Delilah. After suffering and being humbled for his sins, he sacrificed his life for God's people. Learn more about this amazingly strong man and his deeds in our in-depth article on Samson!

Samuel
1Samuel, 2Samuel, 1Chronicles 6:28, 9:22, etc.

Samuel is unique in that not only was he an Old Testament prophet he was also the last Judge of Israel before the crowning of King Saul. He was miraculously born when his mother was healed of barrenness. He anointed both Saul and David as kings over God's people.

Sarah
Genesis 11:29 - 31, 12:5 - 17, 16:1 - 8, 17:15 - 21, etc.

Sarah, whose named was changed from Sarai by God (Genesis 17), was the wife of Abraham. After she was healed of being barren her entire life she gave birth to Isaac when she was 91 years old! Sarah is noteworthy in the Old Testament (and the entire Bible) as the only woman where her age at death, 127 years old, is recorded (Genesis 23:1).

Satan the devil
Isaiah 14:12

Satan was originally a righteous angel named Lucifer whose name meant "light bringer." He and other angels willfully disobeyed and rebelled against God and in the process became demons (Revelation 12). Lucifer's name was then changed to Satan which means "the adversary."

Lucifer corrupted himself through lust (pride) and vanity. He sought nothing less than knocking God off his throne and taking control of the entire universe (Ezekiel 28, Isaiah 14)! He and his demons, however, were perfectly defeated and cast down to the earth as quick as lightning (Luke 10:18). Satan, in the near future, will be put to death for his rebellion!

Saul
1Samuel 9 - 11, 13 - 29, 31, 2Samuel 1 - 7, 9, 12:7, etc.

Saul was of the tribe of Benjamin and was anointed by Samuel as Israel's first human king. He reigned over God's people for forty years, from 1050 to 1010 B.C. He took a young King David into his service but out of jealousy grew to hate him and then tried to kill him. He lost his chance to have his descendants rule over Israel due to disobeying the Eternal (1Samuel 11). He ultimately died in battle with his son Jonathan.

Sennacherib
2Kings 18:13, 19:16, 20, 36, 2Chronicles 32:1 - 22, Isaiah 36:1, 37:17 - 37

Sennacherib was the most famous of the kings of Assyria. He foolishly taunted God when he was planning to destroy Jerusalem and its inhabitants in 701 B.C. His entire army of 185,000 troops was killed so quickly, by a single angel, such that none of them fired a single arrow or even was able to alert anyone regarding what was happening (Isaiah 37:33 - 38)!

Seth
Genesis 4:25 - 26, 5:3 - 8, Luke 3:38

Seth is Adam and Eve's third son. He was born after Cain killed his brother Abel.

Shadrach, Meshach, Abednego
Daniel 1:7, 2:49, 3:12 - 30

Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were the Babylonian names of three Hebrew youths named Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah. They, along with the prophet Daniel, were taken from Jerusalem into Babylonian captivity by Nebuchadnezzar in 605 B.C. and made to serve the king. All four of the Hebrew young men, according to Josephus, were of royal blood and were (or were made by Nebuchadnezzar) eunuchs.

When the three refused to worship an enormous golden idol erected by the king they were thrown into a fiery furnace (Daniel 3). They were miraculously kept from burning alive, however, by the appearance of a fourth person in the furnace who looked like "a son of the gods" (Daniel 3:25, HBFV). Shocked and stunned at what he saw, Nebuchadnezzar declared Israel's God the only Being worthy of worship and promoted the three men in his government.

Shalmaneser V
2Kings 17:3, 18:9

He was the Assyrian king who conquered Samaria, Israel's (Northern 10 Tribes of Israel) capital, in 723 B.C. He took the Israelites captive and transported them to Assyria.

Shem
Genesis 5:32, 6:10, 7:13, 9:18 - 27, 10:1, 21 - 31, etc.

Shem is one of the sons of Noah who survived the flood in the ark. He lived a total of 600 years and is in the lineage of Jesus.

Recommended Articles
Rachel, Ramah and the Birth of Jesus!
Who Saw Ten Generations of Their Family?
Unique Women in Jesus' Lineage!
Was Samson's Strength in His Hair?
Why Did Ancient Israel Split?
Why Did Sarah Lie to the Egyptians?
Biblical Names for the Devil
Why Did Saul Consult the Witch of Endor?

Important Old Testament People
Aaron  to  Cyrus 
Daniel  to  Gideon
Goliath  to  Jesse
Jezebel  to  Melchizedek
Methuselah  to  Obadiah 
Rachel  to  Shem
Sisera  to  Zipporah


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