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The First Israelites
Chapter 3-1
Early Israelites
• Israelites settled in Canaan
• Located along the Mediterranean Sea
• Canaan is modern day Lebanon, Israel
and Jordan
• Worshipping only one god
• Israelites worshipped only one god
– Judaism – name of their religion
– Jews – name of the people who followed this
– Judaism had a big influence on other western
• Spoke Hebrew
• Wrote their beliefs and history in what later
became the Bible
• Herders and traders
• Left Mesopotamia and brought followers to
• God promised that Canaan would belong
to Abraham and followers
• “Father of the Israelites”
• Abraham’s grandson
• Jacob’s 12 sons were the heads of the
twelve tribes of Israel
• Means no rain
• Drought caused the Israelites to move to
• They became slaves in Egypt
• According to the Hebrew Bible:
– Egyptian pharaoh said all Israelite baby boys
must be thrown into the Nile
– Pharaoh’s daughter found a baby in a basket
– Moses led the Israelites to freedom
– God sent 10 plagues to Egypt
– God parted the Red Sea so Israelites could
run away
Ten Commandments
• Moses went to the top of Mount Sinai
• Received the laws of God there (Torah)
• Covenant – agreement between the
Israelites and God (follow God’s laws and
He will protect them)
• Torah – God’s laws of right and wrong
• Ten Commandments – part of the Torah,
10 big rules
• Moses with the
Tablets, 1659, by
Israelites return to Canaan
It took them 40 years to return
Moses did not make it back
Joshua took over and led them back
Took over the Canaanites
• Leaders of the tribes
• A military leader
• Deborah, a woman judge
Phoenician Alphabet
• Alphabet – a group of letters that stand for
• Alphabet made writing simpler and helped
people keep records
• Phoenicians – Greeks – Romans – the
rest of the western world
List Jewish ideas that are important
in our society now.