The spacecraft's engines were activated for 32 seconds and 5 kilograms (11 pounds) of fuel were consumed.
Once Genesis touches the lunar surface, Israel will have entered the history books as only the fourth country to successfully land a spacecraft on the moon, sharing the honor with far larger countries with much deeper pockets - the U.S., China and Russian Federation.
An illustration of the Beresheet spacecraft orbiting the moon.
SpaceIL was founded in 2011 by three Israeli engineers (Yariv Bash, Kfir Damari, and Yonatan Winetraub) who wanted to enter the Google Lunar X-Prize competition which at the time was teeming with competitor teams trying to win the $30 million prize.
The final manoeuvre brought the spacecraft into a tight elliptical orbit around the moon, just 15 to 17 kilometres from the surface at its closest. The competition offered $20 million for the first non-governmental entity to land a spacecraft on the moon. The SpaceIL team was helped by multiple donations from the Israeli Space Agency as well as a donation from billionaire Sheldon Adelson in 2014.
So far, only three other nations have carried out controlled "soft" landings of spacecraft on the lunar surface - the United States, the former Soviet Union and China.
The IAI and SpaceIL control room for Beresheet in Yehud, Israel.
The Beresheet space probe aims to touch down tomorrow, two months after launch, with a landing planned for Thursday, near the moon's Sea of Serenity. After landing, it will take a selfie.
Nearly everything about the unmanned spacecraft goes against convention and shows Israeli ingenuity at its finest. It is part of a joint scientific experiment together with the Weizmann Institute of Science to take measurements of the moon's mysterious magnetic field. We dare to dream. SpaceIL's launch contract with SpaceX and Spaceflight Industries was finalized and the mission was slotted to fly along with the Indonesian Nusantara Satu and USAF AFRL S5 satellites on a Falcon 9 Block 5. The tiny State of Israel is set to join that prestigious club of cosmic superpowers.
The unmanned robotic lander dubbed Beresheet - Hebrew for the biblical phrase "in the beginning" - has travelled through space for seven weeks in a series of expanding orbits around Earth before crossing into the moon's gravity last week.