The Elamites are the most curious group of people in the entire Bible. They first appear in the Book of Genesis where they are the sovereign kings over the vassal-states of the cities of the plain.
At this time Amraphel king of Shinar, Arioch king of Ellasar, Kedorlaomer king of Elam and Tidal king of Golim went to waragainst Bera king of Sodom, Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of Admah, Shemeber king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bella (that is, Zoar). (Genesis 14:1-2)
After Abram returned from defeating Kedorlaomer and the kings allied with him, the king of Sodom came out to meet him in the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley). (Genesis 14:17)
They also appear in Isaiah 21.
A dire vision has been shown to me: The traitor betrays, the looter takes loot. Elam, attack! Media, lay siege! I will bring to an end all the groaning she caused.
Then they appear again in the Book of Acts, as still having a speaking and living language.
Then how is it that each of us hears them in our native language? Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues! (Acts 2:8-11)
Who are they? How did they come to become so powerful to control five wealthy cities in the Dead Sea valley?