Q. Was Abraham a Jew?
A. No! Abraham came out of a pagan background. In order for Abraham to be a Jew he would have to have been born under the tent of Judah among the children of Israel, all of whom never existed at the time of Abram's birth under the tent of his father, Terah (Gen 11:27)His birth father, Terah, died in Haran and it is then YHWH came to Abram, then 75 years old when he left to see the land YHWH said he was going to give him. He left his pagan past behind, to follow the True God. In the accounts found in Genesis 11 on we see how deliberately YaHWeH was dealing with Abraham.
(Rom 4:16) Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law (Israel), but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all.
Webster's 11th Collegiate Dictionary:
1. A person of a non-Jewish nation or of non-Jewish faith; especially : a Christian as distinguished from a Jew
2 : HEATHEN, PAGAN
3 often capitalized : a non-Mormon
1 : HEATHEN 1; especially : a follower of a polytheistic religion (as in ancient Rome)
2 : one who has little or no religion and who delights in sensual pleasures and material goods : an irreligious or hedonistic person
3 : NEO-PAGAN
–pa£gan£ish ¬g*-nish adjective
The Children of Noah were falling away in a hurry. The Tower of Babel was going up in defiance of the Elohim, so they broke the people into racial groups by changing the language a division. In the world we see, however, people getting along and learning each other's languages, so why not then? It is very possible that along with the change in each groups change of language there was also a change in natural character? It is very possible each division was not only speaking differently but thinking different that the unity they all once felt was not divided up into different ways of thinking and the projects they had undertaken could not be completed because of this mental change, which also, led to speaking differently?
Men were not sitting around primitive campfires making grunt and groaning sounds. When one looks a languages, modern as well as ancient you find it is very complicated and appears in the human record fully developed. Yes, they do find scratching on cave walls, but even today we can find primitive peoples doing the same and their kids putting up graffiti on trees and rocks, but what is usually found also is that these primitive groups have a very complicated social order. I read once that the further a people move away from the truth creator the more primitive they become. This seems to be a plausible answer, and this is what we actually find in today’s world. Still, the languages of these primitives of today is quit complicated and is not primitive at all, only different.
During the time of the language divisions, equaling racial divisions, the group Abraham came out of would be the historical Ebers (Hebrews) which can be traced back to Shem. Abraham's ancestry traces to the ling of Shem -- read Genesis 11:10-32 for this family tree of Shem. It is very likely Abraham had met Noah. There was a population explosion as the fathers of the first grouping of races from the three sons of Noah lived hundreds of years having sons and daughters.
All of the people before the Covenant with Israel were Heathens/Pagans developing a system of worship that worshiped the created as opposed to the Creator. This too is when the worship of man began, making man or families of men as god and gods. By Christian definition pagans are non-believers or idol worshipers of multiple gods, worshipers of nature, forces, etc. Heathen and Pagans are compared, in modern history, to the religions of Rome prior to the Christian religion of the first Century -- ever notice, however, how Christianity seems to fit this definition too -- multiple gods, customs centering around natural things, like the rising of the sun and Christmas trees, etc. -- ?
After the first Century the Christianity based on the teachings of the Apostles and the words of YaHshua Christianity of that era seemed to virtually disappear. Around 384 AD with the rise of Constantine a new face of Christianity appeared, one based on much of customs of the Empire. This new face had the appearance of pagans past. The customs and traditions, while given Christian names wound into the Biblical narrative, had all the earmarks of polytheistic religion of Rome. Sun worship became "son" worship, Passover became Easter (fertility sun worship, eggs, bunnies, facing east to honor the sun) and the shifting of the 7th day Sabbath day worship to the 1st day of the week , Sunday, as the new Sabbath -- the pagan influence is obvious. The pagan past is a line back to the time of Abraham, the Babylonian system from which he, Abraham, was to escape, giving up everything to follow his God, YaHWeH, from whom all of the other descendants of Noah had turned. Abraham believe YaHWeH, believed in the promises. Abraham was before Jacob (Israel).
There were no Jews or people of Israel at this time during the time of Abraham and Lot, so neither of them could be Jews. Not until Isaac, then Jacob, whose name was changed to Israel do we see any Jews, from the tribe of Judah, a son of Jacob (Israel). In modern day terms the title of Jew is applied to anyone of that religion, and of that religion there are many sects, many variations at odds with one another. There are black Jews, Arab Jews, white Jews, etc. Those of the first blood Jews were of the Semitic tribes originating from the line Shem to Eber (Hebrew) to Abraham who originated from around the area of UR after the dispersion of peoples from Babel. Abraham was not a Jew.