What do you remember about the Biblical book of Genesis?


By: J. Reinoehl

6 Min Quiz

Image: Shutterstock

About This Quiz

Genesis, the beginning of the Bible, covers the lives of people from Adam to Joseph. How well do you know the histories of Adam's descendants? Take the following quiz to find out.

What was the name of the garden where God placed the first man?

The name, "Eden" means "field" in Sumerian and "luxury" in Semitic. Eden is used in other scripture passages to represent God's Garden or dwelling place.


What animal tempted Eve?

"Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, 'Yea, hath God said ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?'"


Who killed Abel?

God originated sacrifice when he had to slay an animal to make clothing for Adam and Eve. Although Abel brought God the best of his animals, Cain is simply said to have brought "fruit of the ground." When God showed favor to Abel, Cain killed him.


What was the name of the man commanded to build an ark and collect animals on it?

Many cultures throughout the world have flood stories. A few examples are Mesopotamia (The Epic of Gilgamesh), Norse (Gylfaginning), Masai (Tumbainot), Mandingo in Cote d'Ivoire (Ouende), China (The Great Flood of Gun-Yu), India (Matsya Purana), Malaysia (Mamak and Inak Bungsuk), Hopi (The Entrance Into the Fourth World), and Inca (Unu Pachakuti).


Fill in the blank: "In the beginning, God _______________________."

"In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep." (Genesis 1:1-2)


What cities did God tell Abraham he was about to destroy?

Abraham knew Lot lived in the cities, and so he initially asked God if he would still destroy them if 50 righteous people lived in them. Abraham must have known the cities were evil because he continued asking until he got to 10 people.


What special gift did Jacob give his son, Joseph?

"Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children because he was the son of his old age. And he made him a coat of many colors." (Genesis 37:3)


Abraham was willing to sacrifice what to the Lord at Mount Moriah?

Although many paintings depict Isaac as a small child, Hebrew tradition placed him at the age of 37. A young boy would not have been able to carry the 75-100 pounds of wood required.


What happened to Lot's wife when she looked back at the burning city?

Lot asked to flee to Zoar, presumably the smallest of the five cities on the plain, and as a result, Zoar was spared. Today, Zoar is the only one of the five cities that archaeologists have identified the location with certainty.


What was the name of the tower people built to try to reach the heavens?

Sumer (or the plain of Shinar) is believed to be south of modern Baghdad. The Great Ziggurat of Babylon was more than 1/3 the height (300 m) of today's tallest building and is often thought to be the structure, although it is dated much later (610 B. C.). Alexander the Great demolished the Great Ziggurat in the 4th century B. C.


How long were Noah and his family on the ark?

Although the Bible says the rain came down for 40 days, the flood waters did not begin to recede for 150 days. Noah entered the ark when he was 600 and exited when he was 601—1 year and 10 days later.


What sign did God give Noah that would remind him he would never again flood the earth?

The agreement, or covenant God made with Noah, was for Noah and his descendants to fill the earth, but they were not to kill other men. This covenant allowed man to kill animals for meat (as long as they didn't have life (blood) in them). In exchange, God promised not to destroy the earth using a flood, and gave the rainbow as a sign this would not happen.


From what city was Abram originally?

"And Terah took Abram his son, and Lot the son of Haran his son's son, and Sarai his daughter in law, his son Abram's wife; and they went forth with them from Ur of the Chaldees, to go into the land of Canaan; and they came unto Haran, and dwelt there." (Genesis 11:31)


Why did Abram and Lot separate company, with Abram moving into Canaan and Lot moving into the cities of the Jordan plain?

There were five major cities on the plain where Lot settled: Sodom, Gomorrah, Zoar (Bela), Zeboiim, and Admah. Before the rise of Babylon under Hammurabi, cities in Mesopotamia would band together in war as they did in Genesis 14.


What was the name of Abram and Hagar's son?

Ishmael means "God will hear" in Hebrew. Hagar was abused by Sarai after becoming pregnant and ran away. It was while she was in the desert that God told her to return, and gave her Ishmael's name.


According to the covenant with Abraham, how old was a boy supposed to be when he was circumcised?

Other cultures practiced circumcision, but most of them used it as a rite of passage into manhood and did not perform the ritual on infants. In addition, some only slit the foreskin as opposed to removing it.


Who lived in Sodom and sheltered two angels before it was destroyed?

Sodom and Gomorrah existed somewhere around, or in what is now the Dead Sea. The Dead Sea and the area nearby contain a high content of sulfur (brimstone). Pieces of asphalt (highly flammable bitumen) are also found floating in it occasionally, but its source is unknown.


What does Isaac mean?

"And Abraham was a hundred years old when his son, Isaac, was born unto him. And Sarah said, "God hath made me laugh so that all that hear will laugh with me."


Why were the servant, Hagar, and her son kicked out of Abraham's household?

The desert of Beersheba, where Hagar wandered, is in the north of the Negev desert. Beersheba means "Well of the Oath" or "Well of the Seven" because of the treaty Abraham made with the King Abimelech over a well there.


Near which town did Abraham purchase land to bury Sarah?

The tomb of Abraham and Sarah is marked today in Hebron by a structure built by King Herod over it. The actual tomb is inaccessible to the public.


What was the name of the woman Isaac married?

Rebekah was the granddaughter of Nahor, Abraham's brother. This made her Isaac's first cousin once removed.


Isaac and his father, Abraham, both were deceptive to King Abimelech about what?

Abraham concealed the fact he was married to Sarah by saying she was his sister to both King Abimelech and the Pharaoh of Egypt. When King Abimelech caught Isaac doing the same thing, the King chastised him for it.


For what did Esau exchange his birthright with Jacob?

"Then Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentiles; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way: thus Esau despised his birthright." (Genesis 25:34)


What was Esau doing when Jacob tricked his father to get his father's blessing?

Rebekah had to disguise Jacob by covering his arms with goatskin. Rebekah also made the stew Jacob served and provided him with Esau's clothing to complete the deceit.


Jacob had a dream about what at Bethel?

Bethel means "house of God." Jacob changed the name of the city called Luz to Bethel after having the dream.


After working for Laban for seven years, Laban tricked Jacob and gave him which daughter as his wife?

Jacob spent his first month working for Laban without wages. When Laban finally offered to pay him, Jacob told him he wanted to marry his younger daughter, Rachel.


Judah was the son of what woman?

Judah was the ancestor of David, and one of his descendants was Jesus.


When Jacob fled from Laban and Laban pursued him, what did Laban accuse Jacob of doing?

Rachel had stolen the idols from her father, but her husband, Jacob, was unaware of the theft. Luckily for Rachel (and Jacob), the idols were not found.


"If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? And if thou doest not well, __________________."

"If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? And if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him." (Genesis 4:7)


Why did Simeon and Levi kill all the men in the city of Shechem?

Simeon and Levi also deceived the men of Shechem by telling them they would intermarry with them if the males were all circumcised. While the men were recovering from the operation, the brothers killed them for the injustice they had done to their sister.


In which country was Joseph sold to Potiphar?

Trade routes traversed the ancient world, but the road system at the time of Joseph was not as advanced as it was during the Roman Empire. Merchants traveled in large groups, frequently having 300 or more pack animals, with armed guards to prevent attacks from wild animals and bandits.


Why was Joseph put in prison?

There were no judges or individuals whose only job was to hear and decide on legal matters in ancient Egypt. Instead, it seems any appointed official could perform the task. The Pharaoh mde all the laws.


What happened to the butler and baker?

"And he restored the chief butler unto his butlership again, and he gave the cup into Pharaoh's hand. But he hanged the chief baker: as Joseph had interpreted to them." (Genesis 40:21-22)


How many years of famine were there in Egypt?

Extended famines were common in the ancient world and could be caused by drought, locusts, warfare, or blight. In ancient Egypt, famines were less frequent especially extended famines, but a few were recorded.


Where was Jacob buried?

The cave of Machpelah cost Abraham 400 shekels of silver. This is about 199 ounces of silver, or 12.5 pounds.


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