Alice C. Linsley
This kinship diagram shows that there are two named Esau in Genesis. Esau the Elder had tw wives which is the pattern of the Horite Hebrew rulers. His two wives were Adah, a daughter of Elon the Hittite, and Basemath, a daughter of Ishmael. Basemath is called Mahalath in Genesis 28:9.
Both Esaus are related to the Horite Hebrew of Edom. The Greeks called Edom "Idumea" which means land of red people. Esau is described as hairy and red. The Horite Hebrew of Edom were known to have a reddish skin tone. King David also was described as reddish, owing to his Edomite blood.
The "sons of Esau" who dwell in Seir are designated as kinsmen to the Israelites in Deuteronomy 2:4.
Genesis 36:1-5 gives the impression that there was only one Esau and that he had three wives. The passage represents a conflation. Knowledge of the two-wife marriage pattern of the Horite Hebrew helps to sort out the confusion. There were two named Esau. Esau the Elder was a contemporary of Seir the Horite Hebrew ruler of Edom. Esau the Younger was his grandson who married Oholibamah, the great granddaughter of Seir.
Esau the Younger married well. Oholibamah's mother was the high ranking Anah and Anah's father was Zibeon, a Horite chief. Oholibamah means the tent of the high place, or the most high shrine tent, or tabernacle. She is an archetype of the Virgin Mary.
It is likely that Oholibamah was Esau the Younger's half sister, a daughter of Isaac by this first wife. Esau the Younger's second wife was Judith, a daughter of Berri (Beerah) who he married around the age of forty (Gen. 26:34).
Naming practices of the Horite Hebrew
We often find two Horite Hebrew persons with the same name in the Bible. There are two named Enoch, two named Lamech, two named Nahor, two named Esau, two named Joktans, and two named Korah. When we find two with the same name, we have evidence of the cousin bride's naming prerogative by which the second wife of the ruler named her first born son after her father.
This cousin bride's naming prerogative was already a custom in the time of Lamech (Gen. 4). Lamech’s daughter, Naamah, named her first-born son Lamech after her father.
Familiarity with the cousin bride's naming prerogative enables us to recover the names of some chiefs who have been given symbolic names, that is, names that are etiological etymologies. For example, Leah's first-born son is Reuben and we are told his name derives from raa beonyi, meaning "Yahweh has seen my misery." A second explanation relates the name to Leah's hope of winning Jacob's love by bringing forth a son. In this case, the name derives from yeehabani, meaning "he will love me." It is more likely that Reuben is ra'a ben, meaning "behold, a son."
However, Jacob's first-born son by Leah is Horite Hebrew. The name Reu appears in the Horite Hebrew king lists of Genesis 11. Reu is the son of Peleg, the son of Eber. Reuben's fist-born son is called Hanock which is a variant spelling of the Horite Hebrew name Enoch (Gen. 4:17 and Gen. 5:18).
Esau's name is explained as referring to the color red: Edom (Gen. 36:2). This could as easily be translated "ruddy", an adjective applied to King David who had Edomite blood through Tamar. The same source relates the name to an abundance of hair: “The first to be born was red, altogether like a hair cloak; so they named him Esau.” (Gen. 25:25)
What is the origin of the name Esau and what connection does it have to the central message of the Bible? Cheyne associates the name with "Usu" of Tyre. (Stade's "Zeitschrift," 17.189) Hiram, the king of Tyre, was allied by kinship to David. Hiram has the ancient Egyptian root HR which mean most high one. It is the same root that appears in the name Hur, Moses’ brother-in-law. Hur’s grandson was one of the builders of the Tabernacle. I Chronicles 4:4 lists Hur as the "father" of Bethlehem, a Horite Hebrew settlement. In other words, the Hiram of Tyre and David of Bethlehem had common Horite Hebrew ancestors, and as the Genesis king lists and Ezekiel 28:11-19 indicate, the Horite lineage can be traced back to Eden.
The Horites believed in God Father (Ra or Ani) and God Son (Horus or Enki). They believed that the Son of God would be born of their ruler-priest bloodlines and that He would reveal himself to his people. This was fulfilled when Jesus, the Son of God, visited Tyre (Matt. 15:21-28; Mark 7: 24).
Some have noted that the name Esau is related to the word Ishan which an African name for Esau. The Arabic, Aramaic, Chadic and Hebrew names are linguistically related because they share common ancient Afro-Asiatic roots. Some Islamic scholars suggest that Esau is Esa or Issa, the Quranic name for Jesus. This raises a fascinating possibility that the son beloved of the father and Isaac's proper heir, whose birthright was denied him by Israel, is a type of Jesus Messiah!
David had Edomite blood through Tamar and was descended from the most ancient priestly line through Oholibamah and the Horite Hebrew chief Zibeon. This is why II Samuel 8:18 speaks of David's sons as being priests. They didn't serve in the office of priest, but they were of the priestly line from which Jesus came. So we find a parallel between Oholibamah and the Virgin Mary. Oholibamah, the Most High Tent, housed the seed of Messiah through David, and her mother's name is Anah. Likewise the Virgin Mary's womb became the tabernacle of the Most High God, and her mother’s name was Ana.
Related reading: The Substance of Abraham's Faith; Seats of Wisdom; Edom and the Horites; Chiefs of Edom; Ido, Edom, Idumea; The Pattern of Two Wives