Amalek

Synonyms:
Amalek, a-ma-LAYK, עֲמָלֵק
Amalek (Wikipedia)

Amalek (Hebrew: עֲמָלֵק, Modern Amalek, Tiberian ʻĂmālēq) occurs in the Old Testament of the Bible and refers to a grandson of Esau, the descendant nation of Amalekites, and the territories of Amalek which they inhabited.

The Old Testament, accepted by Jews and Christians, describes the Amalekites as a nomadic tribe which lived in ancient Israel and in the land called Moab, in what the Romans called Arabia Petraea (Moab and the desert of Sinai), a region depopulated in the fourteenth century BC (maybe by the Egyptian Akhenaten, who introduced a worship centered in Aten-solar deity) and then occupied by Edomites.

According to the Book of Genesis and 1 Chronicles, Amalek was the son of Eliphaz and the concubine Timna. Timna was a Horite and sister of Lotan. Amalek appears in the genealogy of Esau (Gen. 36:12; 1 Chr. 1:36) who was the chief of an Edomite tribe (Gen. 36:16). Amalek is described as the "chief of Amalek" in Genesis 36:16, in which it is surmised that he ruled a clan or territory named after him. In the chant of Balaam at Numbers, 24:20, Amalek was called the 'first of the nations', attesting to high antiquity.Rashi states: He was the first of all of them (the other nations) to war against Israel (when they came out of Egypt). First-century Roman-Jewish scholar and historian Flavius Josephus refers to Amalek as a 'bastard' (νόθος) in a derogatory sense.

According to the Old Testament, the Amalekites were a nomadic, or seminomadic people who inhabited the Negev. They are commonly considered to be Amalek's descendants through the genealogy of Esau. This is probably based on the association of this tribal group with the steppe region of ancient Israel and the area of Kadesh (Genesis 14:7). As a people, the Amalekites are identified as a recurrent enemy of the Israelites.

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