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In Genesis 15:19, God lists the Kenites among the peoples inhabiting the Promised Land. From this point on, they appear in:

Numbers 24:21-22 (here prophesied against by Balaam), Judges 1:16 (as descendants of Moses' father-in-law who join Judah in the Negev), Judges 4:11¹,17, 5:24 (as the tribe of Heber, Sisera's ally), 1 Sam 15:6 (as being among the people David told Achish he raided for him), 1 Sam 30:29 (here receiving spoil from David), and 1 Chron 2:55 (as the tribe of some scribal families)

Now, these people are explicitly called Cain by Balaam. Is there any connection with Adam & Eve's son? Could Cain's descendants have survived the flood? I'm not sure but Genesis seems pretty cut-and-dry about the flood entirely wiping humanity off the earth.

This would hypothetically provide a source for Genesis 4's genealogy, which is quite different from Genesis 5 & 11's genealogies so perhaps Moses picked it up among his in-laws? This article argues that the composition of Genesis' narratives on Adam's family can't be placed before 1300 BC.

¹From this verse we learn that that previously mentioned Kenite father-in-law was named Hobab.

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    Noach’s wife was a descendant of Cain, so everyone is a descendent of Cain as well: washingtonpost.com/archive/opinions/1995/09/02/…
    – Menachem
    Dec 5, 2022 at 2:27
  • Wiped all flesh off the face of the earth, but in every era spiritually at least, it's Cain (jealous/haters) against Havel (the pure spirit of truth and Mashiach), the Mixed vs. the Tzaddik Moshe-Mashiach. Dec 5, 2022 at 16:37

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Only Noach, his wife, his 3 sons and daughters-in-law and Og, King of Bashan survived the flood.

Srcs: Nidda 61a.... And Rabbi Yoḥanan said that the term “one that was saved” is referring to Og, who was saved from the punishment of the generation of the flood. For this reason, Moses was more afraid of Og. Also see, Ramban, Berishith 6:4, regarding the possibility that other giants survived the Flood as well.

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    Hi Fawaz. How do you know this?
    – Double AA
    Dec 4, 2022 at 23:55
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    @DoubleAA Nidda 61a.... And Rabbi Yoḥanan said that the term “one that was saved” is referring to Og, who was saved from the punishment of the generation of the flood. For this reason, Moses was more afraid of Og. Also see, Ramban, Berishith 6:4, regarding the possibility that other giants survived the Flood as well. Dec 5, 2022 at 3:38
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    On Sichon's survival together with Og, see Devarim Rabbah 11:10.
    – Harel13
    Dec 5, 2022 at 5:48
  • What's the point of an answer saying only these people survived if you finish with and maybe some more
    – Double AA
    Dec 5, 2022 at 13:13
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Let's go through and see what the commentaries say.

Genesis 15:19

Rashi - they are Edom

Numbers 24:21-22

Ibn Ezra - descendants of Jethro

Judges 1:16

Verse itself says descendants of Jethro as you pointed out

Judges 4:11¹,17, 5:24

The Hida, on 4:11 - Jethro was the "good in Cain" separated from the "bad in Cain"

1 Sam 15:6

Rashi - descendants of Jethro

1 Sam 30:29

Targum Yonatan - Shalmaites, an Arabic tribe

1 Chron 2:55

Rashi - People from a place called Cain (mentioned in Josh. 15:57)

Let's piece it together. Early in the timeline, with the exception of Genesis 15:19, it generally refers to the descendants of Jethro, Moses Father in Law. Otherwise, it is an unrelated tribe with the same name.

The connection to Cain comes from the teachings of the famous and important Kabbalist the Arizal, "Shaar Hagilgulim", who explains that Moses was the reincarnation of Aber, and Jethro was the reincarnation of Cain.

This is hinted at in Jethro's statement in Exodus 18:6, the first letters of each word make up a new word: brother, in hebrew.

So Cain's descendants did not survive the flood, but we do have a tradition that connects the words of Jethro's people, to the man Cain in a more esoteric way.

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