So Sarah was gone and Abraham took another wife named Keturah. He also had some concubines. So he was old, but not dead yet ifyouknowwhatImean winkwinknudgenudge.
Anyway, Ketura bore him 6 children (whose names I don't feel like typing) from whom sprouted approximately eight nations (whose names I don't feel like typing). He gave gifts to these sons, and other unnamed sons of other unnamed concubines, and sent them away. To the east. Somewhere. Apparently Isaac was the jealous type.
So when Abraham died he was 175 years old. So I suppose it was just sort of time for him to check out. He was buried in the cave where Sarah was already interred, and you will remember that cave as being the one he purchased rightfully from the Hittites, just in case there is any misunderstanding. Isaac and his half-brother Ishmael buried him, but Abraham left everything to Isaac, and after Abraham's death god blessed Isaac, so one wonders why Ishmael even bothered.
Ishmael had twelve sons: Nebaioth, Kedar, Adbeel, Mibsam, Mishma, Dumah, Massa, Hadad, Tema, Jetur, Naphish and Kedemah. Just like god promised. And they apparently lived either 'in hostility toward' or 'to the east of' their brothers, the translators aren't sure which. Hm. That's sort of a big difference. You be the judge.
Ishmael lived to the ripe age of 137 before he died.
Isaac was forty when he married Rebekah. She was barren (?!?!?!?!) man what a downer. But never fear, because Isaac PRAYED about it, and man, when you pray about your wife being barren, as we all know, god will TOTALLY get RIGHT ON that particular problem. In like, a hundred years!
Sorry, I shouldn't pshaw so much.
Twenty years after they prayed about the barrenness problem Rebekah became pregnant. So god's time scale is improving a little. She wasn't only pregnant, either, it was with twins! Two for the price of one! They jostled inside her and she was most upset about it, so much so she went to speak with god about why he couldn't ever answer a prayer in a normal fashion. He was undoubtedly hanging around with the djinn of the east too much!
God explained that the two fetuses (fetii?) would grow apart from each other into two separate nations, and that the older would serve the younger.
Which didn't really answer her question. Which had been about HER.
So the first boy she had was a bit of a freakshow, he was covered in red hair. Like the wolfman. He was named Esau. The second son was 'grasping Esau's heel'. So they named him Jacob. Esau was good at hunting (oo killing things, god should like that) and Jacob just stayed inside.
One day, in what could be one of the lamest stories I've ever read anywhere, Esau came in from hunting and was really hungry. Jacob was making some stew and Esau asked to have some. Jacob told him to sell him his birthright first. So Esau did, and Jacob gave him some food. Which goes to show that Esau was either much stupider than Jacob or simply much hungrier. In this way Jacob got the rights and privileges of being firstborn, all for a little red stew and a crust of bread.