ChristianAnswers.Net WebBible Encyclopedia

Who and what is

Hebrew: יִשָּׂשכָר —meaning: hired (Genesis 30:18)

The man Issachar

This is the name of a biblical man and a tribe of Israel.

He was Jacob's 9th son, and was born in Padan-aram (compare 28:2). His mother is Leah, Jacob’s 1st wife.

God hath given me,” said Leah, “my hire (Hebrew: sekhari)… and she called his name Issachar.”

At the going down into Egypt due to famine, he had 4 sons (46:13; Numbers 26:23, 25).

Tribe of Issachar

During the journey through the wilderness, this tribe marched on the east side of the tabernacle, along with Judah and Zebulun (Numbers 2:5).

This tribe contained 54,400 fighting men when the census was taken at Sinai.

After the entrance into the Promised Land, this tribe was one of the 6 which stood on Gerizim during the ceremony of the blessing and cursing (Deuteronomy 27:12).

The prophetic blessing pronounced by Jacob on Issachar corresponds with that of Moses (Genesis 49:14-15; compare Deuteronomy 33:18-19).


The land allotment of Issachar is described in Joshua 19:17-23. It included the plain of Esdraelon (=Jezreel), which was and still is the richest portion of Israel (Deuteronomy 33:18-19; 1 Chronicles 12:40).

Map of the tribal division of land—with Issachar marked in RED

Map of the ancient Israelite tribal territories in the Promised Land. / License: CC BY-SA 3.0. File ID: 12 tribus de Israel.svg / 12 Tribes of Israel Map.svg
The approximate location and boundaries of the 12 landed Israelite tribes, based on records in the Book of Joshua. This, and more, was The Promised Land given by God to the descendants of Israel, the grandson of Abraham. The full extent of the Canaanite land promised was never acquired, due to the repeated disobedience of the Israelites during the their commanded conquest of this very idolatrous, heathen land, after the Exodus from slavery in Egypt and the following 40 years of Divine punishment wandering in the wilderness, before Joshua and the living descendants were allowed to enter the land, following the death of Moses.
License: CC BY-SA 3.0.

Other tribes

  1. Asher
  2. Benjamin
  3. Dan
  4. Ephraim
  5. Gad
  6. Issachar
  7. Judah
  8. Levi
  9. Manasseh
  10. Naphtali
  11. Reuben
  12. Simeon
  13. Zebulun