Keturah was Abraham's wife?

Genesis 25:1-2 Abraham had taken another wife, whose name was Keturah. She bore him Zimran, Jokshan, Medan, Midian, Ishbak and Shuah.

Keturah was Abraham's concubine?

1 Chronicles 1:32 The sons born to Keturah, Abraham’s concubine: Zimran, Jokshan, Medan, Midian, Ishbak and Shuah.

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    Please explain what the contradiction is. – curiousdannii Dec 14 '14 at 13:50
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    It does not necessarily mean that Abraham married Keturah while Sarah was alive. A logical explanation would be that while Sarah was alive Keturah was a concubine and then Abraham married her after Sarah's death - the two facts are not mutually exclusive. – gideon marx Dec 14 '14 at 17:12
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    This is more of a BH question, I think. – Andrew Leach Mar 4 '15 at 12:49

The difference might come down to the purpose of each book. Genesis is a literal account and since Abraham was without wife when he bound Keturah to himself--she became his wife, performing the duties of a wife.
Chronicles on the other hand is a historical record and perhaps a legal document for things such as inheritance through genealogies and also the royal lineage. So while being a technical difference between words that can mean essentially the same thing, when it comes to inheritance the difference becomes quite relevant.

This assertion is my own, but to cite a source that backs up what I say about Chronicles having genealogies gotQuestions summary of Chronicles is suitable.

Another site to give perspective is from Bible.org

When producing the Septuagint, the translators divided Chronicles into two sections. At that time it was given the title, “Of Things Omitted,”


The books of Chronicles seem like a repeat of Samuel and Kings, but they were written for the returned exiles to remind them that they came from the royal line of David and that they were God’s chosen people. The genealogies point out that the Davidic promises had their source in those pledged to Abraham that He would make him the father of a great nation, one through which He would bless the nations.

As well as,

This book also taught that the past was pregnant with lessons for their present. Apostasy, idolatry, intermarriage with Gentiles, and lack of unity were the reasons for their recent ruin.


First Chronicles naturally divides into four sections: (1) The Genealogies or the Royal Line of David (1:1-9:44); (2) the Rise of David or His Anointing (10:1-12:40), (3) The Reign of David (13:1-29:21), and (4) The Assession of Solomon and the Death of David (29:22-30).


The word for wife in Genesis 25 could be translated as woman, according to Strong's Lexicon: http://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=H802&t=KJV

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