Discovering the Hebrew Bible
Immerse yourself in the richness of the Hebrew Scriptures and discover in the ancient texts hidden meanings that have been lost over centuries of translations. Take a closer look at famous biblical stories and at the lives of their characters as you take an unforgettable spiritual journey.
Take a closer look at the lives of Adam, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Joseph via an interpretive chronological journey through their stories and discover unique insights.
Dr. Eli Lizorkin Eyzenberg
Dr. Eli Lizorkin-Eyzenberg is an Israeli expert scholar in Early and Modern Church History. Dr. Lizorkin-Eyzenberg has received a fair amount of Jewish and Christian
Adam: His Failure And His Hope (part 1)
Adam & Eve are the most well-known couple in the history of the world; they cannot be examined separately from each other. In this chapter, we will discuss the first and second creation as well as God's provision for both humans and animals.
Adam: His Failure And His Hope (part 2)
In this chapter we will examine the life Adam in the Garden of Eden, discuss the story of Eve's creation, the tree of knowledge and the fall of Adam and Eve.
Adam: His Failure And His Hope (part 3)
In this chapter, we will see what happens to Adam & Eve, as well as to the serpent, after their fall. What is God's punishment for each of them?
Noah: The Life of New Adam (part 1)
In this chapter, we meet Noah and we will try to grasp Noah as a biblical character as well as the events associated with him. We will discuss Noah's generations and his role as the new Adam - the hope of the fallen world.
Noah: The Life of New Adam (part 2)
In this chapter, we will discuss God's grace to Noah during the Flood as well as Noah's obedience to all God's commands. What covenant did God make with Noah and how did he bless Noah and his sons?
Abraham: The Life of Our Father (part 1)
Abraham is one of the Bible’s favorite characters. He is considered to be “the father” of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. During this lesson, we will discuss Abraham's early years and his call from God to continue on to the Promised Land. We will also learn about Abraham's visit to Egypt and his parting ways with Lot.
Abraham: The Life of Our Father (part 2)
We continue learning about Abraham's life and this time we will talk about the Lord's reaffirming of the promise after Lot had parted from Abraham. Then we will discuss Abraham's obedience to the Lord's commands, his daring mission to rescue Lot from captivity and the events that followed.
Abraham: The Life of Our Father (part 3)
The next chapter of the Bible begins with a vision of God coming to Abraham to promise him protection and rewarding. In this chapter, we will talk at length about Abraham's rewards and God's great promise to him as well as the covenant they made.
Abraham: The Life of Our Father (part 4)
One of the things Abraham is famous for is definitely the birth of his son Isaac at such an old age, both Abraham's and his wife. We will read about the heavenly visitors sent to Abraham by God and the news they brought with them. We will also discuss the judgment of Sodom and Gomorrah and Lot's escape from there.
Abraham: The Life of Our Father (part 5)
This lesson we will deal with the ultimate test of Abraham’s trust in God: God's request of Abraham to offer his son, Isaac. We will discuss this challenge of faith and how Abraham handled it and we will analyze the chapter dealing with Isaac on the altar.
Abraham: The Life of Our Father (part 6)
This chapter deals with the Angel of the Lord that stopped Abraham from sacrificing his son. Where else in the Bible does this Angel appear? What is Abraham asked to do instead of sacrificing Isaac and how is he rewarded for his faith?
Isaac: Like Father, Like Son (part 1)
We now turn our attention to the special character that is Isaac. We already know so much about him from our acquaintance with Abraham and now we look even deeper. We will read about the story of Isaac and his wife Rebekah and see how history repeated itself and that Isaac's destiny resembled his father's in more than one way.
Isaac: Like Father, Like Son (part 2)
Following our previous lesson, we analyze the close correlation between the events in Isaac's life and in that of his father - Abraham. We will come to see that these resemblances are in no way coincidental. How is Isaac's success related to God's blessings? What are the events that lead to Isaac's new beginning and what family problems did he deal with?
Jacob: A Man of Struggle
Jacob is considered the patriarch of Israelites. God's covenant with Abraham continues through Jacob (his grandson). We will discuss at length why Jacob was a man of struggle and we will begin this discussion as early as the struggle with his brother (Esau) in their mother's (Rebekah's) womb.
Jacob: Esau’s birthright
We continue our discussion on Jacob and look closely at the family dynamics between Jacob and his brother Esau, as well as between each of the brothers and their parents. Who was whose favorite and why? How did the rivalry between Jacob and Esau evolve and what was God's reaction to the brothers' actions?
Jacob: The Stolen Blessing (Part 1)
This lesson deals with chapter 27 of the Book of Genesis, known to most of us as "the Story of the Stolen Blessing". We will try to understand why God’s covenant continued through Jacob despite the unethical tricking of Isaac.
Jacob: The Stolen Blessing (Part 2)
We continue to analyze the story of the stolen blessing while following its logic and seeking to grasp the meaning in its original text free from our modern ideas and concerns. We will also see how this narrative about Jacob portrays Israel, and talk about Jacob's life after having deceived his father.
Jacob: The Real Blessing
Isaac blesses Jacob with a different blessing – the blessing that was meant to him. In this chapter, we will discuss the real blessing both in regard to Jacob specifically and on a larger scale in terms of the meaning and continuity of God's covenant with the patriarchs of Israel.
One of the most famous human encounters with God in the Bible is the dream of “Jacob’s Ladder”. We will talk about the dream, try to imagine the ladder and discuss God's message and promise to Jacob.
God tells Jacob to return to Canaan and so Jacob prepares to leave Haran and finally face his brother. But Laban doesn't want to let him go. In this chapter, we will read about Jacob’s escape, this time away from Haran, and back to his father’s house. We will also discuss the humor and irony that accompany the seriousness of this story.
Jacob: The Danger of Home coming
Laban and Jacob make a pact and end their dispute in peace. We will talk about what they promised to each other. Now that Jacob is free, he returns home after twenty years. This is the final stage of Jacob’s struggle with his brother and he must come face-to-face with Esau once again. We will see how the events of Jacob's coming home process demonstrate his internal change over these years and what kind of man he came to be.
Jacob: Making Things Right
Jacob and Esau finally meet. During this lesson, we will discuss Jacob's prayer to God moments before the dreadful meeting. We will then turn our attention to Jacob's restitution and confession. Who was the man that Jacob fought the night before meeting Esau and how did it lead to the change of Jacob's name to Israel?
Jacob: The Two Important Meetings
Jacob's new name is indicative of a change in his identity. The man, whose name was given to him due to his grabbing of his brother's heel, no longer exists, he is not Jacob anymore. We will talk about the meaning of the name "Israel". We will finish our acquaintance with Jacob's life with a discussion about the unexpected grace that Esau showed Jacob upon their meeting.
The Joseph Story (part 1)
In this chapter, we will begin our discussion of the final Biblical character for this course - Joseph. We will read about Jacob's (Israel's) favoritism of Joseph, the resentment it caused among Joseph's brothers and their plot to kill him for it. Finally, we will talk about the brothers' explanation of Joseph's disappearance to their father and how their deceit relates to Jacob's own actions in the past.
The Joseph Story (part 2)
As we begin, we will deviate a bit from Joseph and talk about certain events in the life of one of Joseph's brothers - Judah. We will talk about why this "Judah Interruption" in the middle of Joseph's story in not without reason. We will then return to Joseph, who is now in Potiphar’s house, and see how God's promise keeps on and manifests in Joseph's success in Egypt.
The Joseph Story (part 3)
In this chapter, we will read about Joseph faithfulness to God (and Potiphar) and how it lead to his imprisonment. We will learn about Joseph's dream interpretation skills as he explains to the Egyptian ministers the meaning of their dreams, hoping it would help him get out of prison.
The Joseph Story (part 4)
Two years have passed and the ministers have done nothing to help Joseph out of prison. This until the Pharaoh himself has two dreams no one can interpret. This lesson we will talk about the Pharaoh's dreams and his gratitude to Joseph. We will see how Joseph's state in Egypt radically changes from a prisoner to the Pharaoh's right hand.
The Joseph Story (part 5)
The story of Joseph goes on to describe his life in Egypt during the seven fruitful harvest years, particularly his wife and children. Then, as the years of the famine began, we reach the pivotal point of the story where Joseph's brothers unknowingly turn to him for help. We will discuss at length this meeting between Joseph and his brothers.
The Joseph Story (part 6)
As we come closer to the end of Joseph's story, we read and talk about his testing of the brothers' intentions and feelings. Are they sorry for what they have done? Will Joseph forgive his brothers and reunite with his family?
The Joseph Story (part 7)
We finish our story of Joseph and this course with the final test planned by Joseph for his brothers. Juda's willingness to take Benjamin's place in captivity leads to Joseph revealing himself and to reconciliation with his brothers. We will "witness" Joseph's emotional response and see how the prophecy once given to Joseph in a dream will finally be fulfilled.
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Discovering the Hebrew Bible
Reaching Far and Wide
- Weekly Hours: 2 hrs
- Duration: 9 Months
- Language: English
A Tradition of Excellence
The Israel Institute of Bible Studies has partnered with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the leading academic institute in Israel and one of the leading biblical research institutes in the world with a long and proud history of scholarly excellence and leadership in biblical languages and studies. We aim to share this wealth of knowledge with people around the world through programs developed by our leading biblical scholars and education professionals, and through our many years of experience as the leading online institute of biblical studies. The Hebrew University of Jerusalem fully accredits all of our classical languages courses, so students can take courses for university credits that are acknowledged by universities around the world.