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Holman Bible Dictionary
Table of Nations
The Table of Nations has three basic divisions. The people and lands of the known world fit into one of three families, the family of Shem, Ham, or Japheth. The names which appear in each of the families are names which come from several different categories: racial descent, geographical location, language differences, or political units.
Japheth's descendants (Genesis 10:2-5 ) inhabited the Aegean region and Anatolia or Aisa Minor. The descendants of Ham (Genesis 10:6-20 ) were located especially in the regions of North Africa and the coastal regions of Canaan and Syria. The descendants of Shem (Genesis 10:21-31 ) are especially important because Abraham comes from the line of Shem. Thus Abraham is a Shemite
or Semite. Because he is also a descendant of Eber, he is called a Hebrew (Genesis 11:14-32 ). The descendants of Shem were located generally in north Syria, that is, the region of the upper part of the Euphrates River, and Mesopotamia, especially the eastern part. See Assyria; Babylon; Canaan; Habiru; Israel; Mesopotamia; Semites.
These dictionary topics are from the Holman Bible Dictionary, published by Broadman & Holman, 1991. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman & Holman.
Butler, Trent C. Editor. Entry for 'Table of Nations'. Holman Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/hbd/t/table-of-nations.html. 1991.