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Eber was an early Semite (i.e. a descendant of Shem) whose two sons, Joktan and Peleg, began two notable lines of family descent (Genesis 10:21; Genesis 10:25). The line of descent through Joktan produced many of the Arab tribes (Genesis 10:26-30), and the line through Peleg produced those tribes of Mesopotamia to which Abraham belonged (Genesis 11:16-26). The name ‘Hebrew’, by which Abraham and his descendants were known, was taken from the name ‘Eber’ (Genesis 10:21; Genesis 14:13; Genesis 39:17; Exodus 1:22; see HEBREW). So too, it seems, was the name ‘Habiru’, by which semi-nomadic peoples in general were known. The word eber meant ‘to pass over or through’.

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Bibliography Information
Fleming, Don. Entry for 'Eber'. Bridgeway Bible Dictionary. 2004.

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