Can you read each other’s minds? Do you have the same personality and interests? Do you always get along? These are some of the most frequent questions I get asked when people learn I’m a twin.

I suppose one of the more special aspects of being a twin is having a built-in companion from birth. We often joke that we went from womb-mates to roommates. My sister was my primary childhood playmate and remains a lifelong confidant but I know other non-twin siblings who are closer and describe each other as ‘best friends’ which we would not. Sometimes the forced closeness felt stifling. I remember one day on our walk home from where the school bus stopped along the highway, my sister refused to walk beside me down our long dirt driveway. “Go ahead or behind me” she ordered “but I can’t stand to be near you one more minute!” Of course that led to a fun game for me trying to be her shadow as I thrilled to see how much I could escalate her level of frustration. Maybe I’m the evil twin.

While identical twins are biological clones, we are also individuals with distinct fingerprints, personalities, interests, and preferences. Because of the many shared similarities though, the scrutiny of comparison tends to be amplified. Even the question of who is older feels like a measure of rank. Whether it’s academic achievements or aesthetic or personal milestones, twins often feel rivalry or inadequacy from this focus on finding distinctions.

Twins will face stereotypes and misconceptions from others, ranging from assumptions of twin telepathy or identity confusion. Navigating the misguided analysis is a frequent part of the twin experience, requiring patience, humor, and self-assurance.

Twins are mentioned several times in the Bible with significant cultural and theological importance. In the book of Genesis, Tamar, the daughter-in-law of Judah, becomes pregnant with twin sons, Perez and Zerah. The midwife tied a scarlet thread around the wrist of the firstborn, Zerah, as he emerged from the womb. However, Zerah pulled his hand back, and Perez was born first, becoming the rightful heir. Despite being born second, Zerah is mentioned alongside Perez in the genealogies. Perez’s lineage eventually led to King David, another case where the younger brother is elevated to leader and his descendents ultimately include Jesus Christ.

From the study of twins in the Bible we discover good news that God knows us and loves us individually. He does not employ human practices of hierarchy but establishes equality among all who were adopted into a new identity by the blood of Jesus.