Judah's Sceptre and Josephs Birthright...Book

Where did they go... assyria and babylon... Where did they disappear to? Who lays claim to lost tribe heritage. Are the modern day Western Europeans direct descendants of the 10 Northeran tribes...
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Judah's Sceptre and Josephs Birthright...Book

Post#1 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 1:59 am

Judah's Sceptre and Josephs Birthright...Book
Body: Part 1
Who Is the True Israelites?

For those who understand bible prophecy but don't understand what or how America will be affected... This indepth book traces the History of the Lost 10 Tribes of Israel, who they are and where they went....
Who Is the True Israelites?


It still A Great read if your aren't Christain.. It's still RECORDED histroy non-the-less...



"Behold, my covenant is with thee, and thou shalt be a father of many nations. Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee. And I will make thee exceeding fruitful, and I will make nations of thee, and kings shall come out of thee."

Although it is not generally known, it is nevertheless true that God made two covenants with Abraham, or, rather, that he made one with Abram and another with that same man after his name was changed to Abraham. This change of name was made that it might harmonize with the new character and the new order of things as they pertain to the covenant man.

The first, or Abram, covenant was made when the man was ninety years old; but the second, or Abraham, covenant was not made until this man was called upon to make the one great sacrifice of his life.

The text of the first of these covenants is as follows: "And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the Lord appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me and be thou perfect. And I will make my covenant between me and thee, and will multiply thee exceedingly. And Abram fell on his face; and God talked with him, Saying: As for me, behold my covenant is with thee, and thou shalt be a father of many nations. Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee. And I will make thee exceeding fruitful, and I will make nations of thee, and kings shall come out of thee. And I will establish my covenant between me and thee and thy seed after thee in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God unto thee, and to thy seed after thee. And I will give unto thee, and to thy seed after thee, the land wherein thou art a stranger, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God," Gen. 17:1-8.

We see at once that the great feature of this covenant is a multiplicity of seed for a man that hitherto has been childless; and that this multitude of people are to become, not one great nation, not simply a plurality of nations, but a large plurality, i.e., "MANY NATIONS."


With the great majority of Bible students, and with most schools of Biblical thought, the fact that the Lord, when making this covenant, promised Abram that he should become the father of more than one nation is entirely overlooked. The general trend of the teaching is, that, of all the people who dwell upon the face of the earth, the Jewish people are distinctively the people, the one nation only, which is composed of the seed of Abraham; and that they, and they alone, are the chosen people of God whose national story makes up the great bulk of Biblical history and prophecy. But such cannot be the case, for if God has fulfilled the first promise which he made to the father of the Jewish people, he has made it possible for the people of some of the other nations of earth to stand side by side with that one, and with them to say "We have Abraham to our father."

One special, and important, feature of this covenant is, that among this multitude of Abrahamic seed there is to be a royal, or kingly line; the posterity of which shall become the rulers of, at least, some of these nations which shall owe their origin to one common father. For the Lord not only promised Abraham that kings should come out of his loins, but when he reiterated the promises of his covenant to Sarai, the barren wife of Abraham, he said: "She shall be the mother of nations; kings of people [R. V., nations] shall be of her." And so her name was changed to Sarah, i.e., Princess, that she, too, might have a name which would be in harmony with her new character, for only a princess may be the mother of kings.

Another special feature of this covenant is, that there is a land consideration, which involves the land of Canaan in an everlasting bond -- not only of ownership, but of possession. Evidently the everlasting possession of that land by its lawful heirs has not yet begun, for, at this writing, it is in the hands of the "Unspeakable Turk."

One other feature of this covenant is, that it is wholly unconditional. That is, the Lord has promised, irrespective of the moral or spiritual character of the people themselves, so to increase the posterity of the Abrahamic lineage, that, nationally, they shall become all that the covenant promises.

Centuries after the giving of this covenant, when the Abrahamic posterity were quite numerous, and while they were still together in one nation, the Lord made a covenant with them which was conditional; but they broke faith with him, and violated its specified conditions. Since it is true, that, in contracting or conditional covenants, there is both a party of the first and a party of the second part, and the law is, that, when either party breaks the conditions, the other is not held, or bound by them, hence when the covenant people broke their part of the contract, God was no longer bound, and said: "They continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not." Thus that covenant was annulled. But in this covenant which we have under consideration, God has assumed all responsibility, and to his integrity alone must we look for its fulfillment. For while it is true that both God and Abraham are parties to this covenant, we well know who has pledged himself, and whose will it expresses, and whom to expect shall keep his word inviolate, and which will be to blame if this covenant goes by default.

The second covenant which God made with Abraham was not made until many years after the first, and was made at a time when Abraham had just offered his only son, who was the first of the promised many, as a sacrifice, in obedience to the command of him who produced that son, by his creative power, from that which was as good as dead, and as an expression of faith in the resurrective power of that same covenant-making God.

( this is where most say that God himself wanted human sacrifice, thus making his ALTER unclean. Which God would have never allowed such uncleaness touching his alter... This was a test to see if Abrham loved his son more than he did God)
It is recorded as follows;

"And the angel of the Lord called unto Abraham the second time, and said, By myself have I sworn, saith the Lord, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son: that in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice," Gen. 22:16-18.

Before noticing the one great feature of this covenant, we wish to call your attention to some of the minor points; the first of which is, that it also is unconditional, "By myself have I sworn," is the declaration of the covenant maker; hence this covenant can neither be broken nor annulled, because, as in the first, God alone is the responsible party.

Another point is, that there is a repetition and confirmation of the multiplicity of children phase of the first covenant, to which is added the first detail as to what shall be a national characteristic of Isaac's multiplied seed in their relation to other nations, namely: "Thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies."

The Lord usually gives himself two witnesses, or doubles his promises and prophecies, as in the case of Pharaoh when he had dreamed the same thing twice and Joseph told him the reason that the dream was doubled to him was because the thing which it signified was of God. So it was with this gate blessing. It was at a time, that, after consenting to accompany Abraham's servant and become the wife of Isaac, through whom must come this great multitude of people, this gate promise, together with that which pertains to the multiplicity of children, was given to Rebekah. It came as a parting blessing from her brothers, who, it seems, were imbued with the spirit of prophecy; for it is recorded that they blessed her, and said: "Thou art our sister, be thou the mother of thousands of millions, and let thy seed possess the gate of those that hate them."

But the one great special feature of this second covenant which God made with that one man, is most certainly couched in the following words: "In thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed." It will take but little investigation to reveal the fact that this one phase of this last covenant is Messianic, and that it pertains especially to but one person. But, that the many to whom pertains the first covenant are involved in this, together with the one to whom it more especially pertains, and that the principal one of this covenant is involved, in the common bond of brotherhood, with the many of that first covenant, no one will deny.

We understand that at the time these words were uttered, it would have been impossible to give them the fullness of meaning which the Holy Spirit has given them, as interpreted in the New Testament, for it was under the illumination given to the Apostle Paul, that their full import bursts upon us. It was when contrasting the law covenant -- the one which was annulled -- with this only-son covenant that Paul is careful to say: "Now to Abraham were the promises made, even for his seed, He does not say, and to the seeds," as concerning many, but as concerning one: "and to thy seed which is Christ."

We have here given the best translation, for clearness, that the text will allow. In it the Apostle makes no attempt to give an exact Old Testament quotation, but bases his argument on the strength of the subject noun being in the singular number. The subject with which he is dealing is the blessing that shall come upon all the Gentile nations through Abraham's sacrificed son, the one seed, who also was the Only Son of his Divine Father, just as Isaac, the type, was the only son of his father when he was offered in sacrifice.

It is not only the words, but also the circumstances connected with the giving of these promises, which are prophetic. God had said to Abraham that the many nations which he had formerly promised him should come through Isaac, his only son, but afterward called upon him to sacrifice that son, who was the only one through whom that promise could be fulfilled. But Abraham knew that God had accomplished that which was equal to a creation, when, through him and Sarah, who were both as good as dead, Isaac had been produced; so, being strong in faith, he offered him up, "accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure."

Could any analogy be more complete?

A Son of Promise, an only son, from whom so much is expected, sacrificed and accounted dead, then, in symbol, raised from the dead! And the two special reasons for this test, being, on the one hand, an encouragement to faith, and on the other, that the son might live to fulfill his God-ordered destiny. The prototype of this is another Son of Promise, an only Son, from whom so much -- so very much -- is promised and expected, sacrificed on the tree, dead. But that the two witnesses, the word and the symbol, of the promiser might not fail, the Divine Father, who gave back that other only son, raises from the dead his only Son, that he also might become the author and finisher of our faith, that he, too, might live and become all that was promised and expected of him, and thus fulfill his glorious destiny. We can ask no more, for both the lesser and the greater son, the type and prototype, are, "as concerning the flesh," sons of Abraham.

Throughout the world it is most generally known, and throughout Christendom it is universally known, that "the seed to whom the promise was made," did come; but it is not universally known, nor acknowledged throughout Christendom, that the many peoples are included in that same covenant with this one seed, without whom the entire structure of Christianity must fall, and that every argument for the Christ, from the covenant standpoint, must stand the crucial test of a numerous posterity from the loins of Abraham, or go down. And yet it is so.

True, the covenant with the people failed; true, the people sinned, and violated their obligations; true, the law was added, because of their transgressions, to bridge over, "till the [one] seed should come to whom the promise was made." But the argument in favor of the Messianic covenant against all this is, that "the covenant which was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect."

How could it? We, sirs, believe that it could not. All Christendom believes that it could not. And if it could not, neither can the promise concerning a multiplicity of children for Abraham be annulled.

For, with this same Messianic promise, there is a repetition of the metaphor of many seeds, as the stars of heaven and as the sands of the sea shore, together with the gate blessing; so we can just as reasonably expect that Christ could or would have failed, as to expect that the gate, the sand, and the star, promises shall have gone by default. But, at this late day in the history of the world, with the Divine light of prophecy shining upon well known facts, which once were only the subjects of prophetic utterances but are now the recorded facts of authentic history, we can say with a confidence, which is supported by the eternal Spirit, that neither have failed.

Elsewhere, when this same Apostle was making an effort to encourage the faith of believers in the faithfulness of God, he gives a word for word quotation from this same covenant promise, saying: "When God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he swore by himself, saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying l will multiply thee." This quotation, as you see, pertains to the multiplicity of seed, and not to the Messianic phase of the second covenant; but it proves to us that each individual feature of that covenant stands on the same secure foundation, and is just as sure of fulfillment as the other, for underneath every promise of that covenant there are two immutable things -- God and his oath.

So, we are safe in saying that God has made two unconditional covenants with Abraham, and that, if he has been true to those covenants, then there are "many nations" in existence on this earth today, the people of which must have descended from Abraham and Sarah; and that these nations are in possession of the gates, or entrances, of their national enemies; unless it be that the time has not yet come for those promises to materialize.

The facts, in either case, are revealed, and, as we proceed, we shall see which of these is true; but thus far it is evident that one of these covenants is Messianic; that the other is multitudinous; that each is contained in the other; that in them there is no contracting party of the second part; and that both alike do stand on the integrity of God.

These are the days of skeptical indifferentism on the one hand, and of rampant infidelity on the other; of narrow sectarianism, worldly churchianity, and the blatant headiness of higher (?) criticism -- days when Endor-ism is called "Spiritual-ism," when Buddhism is sanctified by the name of Theo-sophia, i.e., Divine wisdom, and when pure faith and true spirituality are dubbed "Fanaticism."

Then surely, in such days as these, all who believe that the promises of God are never broken will be helped and encouraged when proof, full and abundant, shall be given that not only the promise concerning the many nations, but all the predictions of "Moses and the prophets," as they pertain either to the Christ or to the many-nationed people, have been, are being -- on the strength of that which has been, and that which now is -- shall yet be fulfilled.


RACE VERSUS GRACE

Since we are compelled to begin our search for light, concerning every phase of these themes, along the lines of Biblical history and prophecy, it will be well for us first to gather from those sources a few of the greater and more general facts. By so doing, we will find it to be a great help in our study of the more special features of the subjects, as it will enable us to place, with unerring certainty, each detail where it belongs.

It being true that the Lord included in the Abrahamic covenants a promise that the forthcoming children of promise should eventually develop into many nations, there are many other things that must follow as a consequent; one of which is, that for the accomplishment of this purpose, God must provide sufficient territory or scope of country, which shall become the home of each nation, for it is absolutely impossible that flourishing nations shall exist without national homes.

Pursuant to this thought, we know of no utterance in all the Word of God which furnishes a more general or comprehensive outlook than the following: "When the Most High divided to the nations their inheritance, when he separated the sons of Adam, he set the bounds of the people according to the number of the children of Israel. For the Lord's portion is his people; Jacob is the lot [cord, or line] of his inheritance," Deut. 32:8, 9.

When Moses was commanded to write the above concerning the division of the earth's surface to the sons of Adam, only a very small portion of it was inhabited; nevertheless, in the mind of God every Island was set apart, and every continent divided. For the scope of the facts herein stated are worldwide, and embrace within their sweep the entire inhabited and inhabitable portion of the earth's surface. Also, those divisions were so arranged and subdivided, and the boundaries so set, that every nation, tongue, and people among the sons of Adam -- be they already in existence, or be they among the forthcoming nations -- had their national home allotted unto them.

Moreover, God always not only kept in mind that special country which he had promised should become the everlasting inheritance of the chosen race, but he also, when setting the territorial bounds for other nations, remembered Israel, and either restricted the boundaries of other nations, or enlarged those divisions of country intended for Israel, which will be needed by that immense multitude of people when they shall have fulfilled their appointed destiny of developing into many nations. For we must bear in mind that the posterity of Abraham are a natural seed, according to the flesh, and that each special nation of the many must have a place in which to dwell.

In addition to the fact that these Abrahamic nations are a fleshly seed, we must remember also that they are not necessarily a race of saints; for it is a notorious fact that some of that race have been, and others are now, just as wicked as that fallen son of the heavens would have them; but, on the other hand, that same race has furnished, and still is furnishing, men who are the grandest and best of earth.

When the time came for God to produce from the covenant man a son who should be the further progenitor of the covenant race, Abraham was anxious that Ishmael, his son by Hagar, the handmaid of Sarah, should be used for this purpose, and exclaimed, "O that Ishmael might live before thee!" To this earnest appeal the Lord was not indifferent, and promised that he would bless Ishmael. But on the subject of rejecting Ishmael as the covenant inheritor, and making his covenant with a son who should be a child of Sarah, as well as of Abraham, the Lord was inflexible. His word of promise was the insurmountable barrier, and so he said to Abraham: "Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed, and thou shalt call his name Isaac . . . and as for Ishmael, I have heard thee . . . twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation. But my covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear unto thee at this set time in the next year."

So Ishmael's posterity became alien before the legal line had any existence, except that, on the authority and responsibility of creative faith, the Lord counts things that are not as if they were -- for God had yet to create Isaac and bring forth life out of that which was as good as dead.

We have the record of another racial choice and rejection which was made before birth, that of Jacob and Esau, but before we discuss the question of race versus grace, --as involved in the caption of this chapter -- relative to them, for it is over their case that the subject is argued in the New Testament, we wish to call your attention to the fact that after the death of Sarah, Abraham married a second wife whose name was Keturah, by whom he had a number of sons. These sons in time became the fathers of the Medes, Midianites, and other nations; but we can no more reckon these nations as a part of the promised many, than we can those which were formed by the posterity of Ishmael and Esau. Could we do so, our task would be an easy one and our story soon told; but we cannot do this, for the covenant nations must come only from Abraham and Sarah through their only son Isaac, whose posterity alone can be called, as they are called, "the Children of the Promise," in contradistinction to those who belong to the other families, and who are called "the Children of the Flesh."

This brings us to the question of race versus grace as understood by the New Testament Church, and explained by the Apostle Paul, who in his Epistle to the Romans says: "Neither, because they are the children of Abraham, are they all [racial] children . . . but the children of the promise are counted for the seed." As he carries the argument still further, he makes this truth all the more apparent by declaring: "In Isaac shall thy seed be called," and then explains, as follows: "That is, they which are the children of the flesh, these are not the [national] children of God; but the children of the promise are counted for the seed. For this is the word of promise, at this time will I come, and Sarah shall have a son. And not only this; but when Rebecca also had conceived by one, even our father Isaac (for the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth): it was said unto her, the elder shall serve the younger. As it is written Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated. What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid!" Rom. 9:7-14.

With this argument before us, it is clear that it is only the children of Isaac who are counted for the national seed of the covenant concerning the promised multitude, and that all this question of election as regards Jacob and Esau is purely racial and national. That is, one of these two nations which sprang from the same mater is the recipient of national promises, glories, honors, covenants, and service of which the other is not a partaker.

The argument is that when Rebecca, who we remember was to become the mother of thousands of millions, had conceived by Isaac, the father of the race, the result was that there were two nations, or nationalities, in the womb -- not necessarily a nation, either of sinners or of saints. To convince us that the election was purely racial, Paul throws in the parenthetical clauses explaining that Jacob had done nothing good that he should deserve these covenant blessings. But he also just as assuredly affirms that Esau had done no evil that he should not have them, for the choice was made before they had the power to do good or evil, i.e., before they were born.

The King James version is a little unfortunate in its use of the word "hated," as herein used, for one meaning which is given to the original word is, "to love less," and when used in contrast to the word "love" as applied to Jacob, it will bear that simple meaning. The fact, which Paul states, is simply that God loved Jacob more and Esau less, or that he preferred one to the other, and that this preference for one excluded the other.

So Paul asks the question, "Is there unrighteousness with God?" and for a reply gives only that surprised exclamation, "God forbid!" he scouts the criminating thought that it could possibly be unrighteousness with God, that he should be pleased to choose the white race with which to work out his purpose, instead of the red, or copper-colored one; but makes the implication that there would have been unrighteousness, of a very grave character, with the Lord, if this election had been one of grace instead of race -- that is, grace unto salvation for Jacob and his seed, and damnation, without any possible chance of grace, for Esau and his children.

Now for the facts concerning these contradistinctive appellations, "Children of the Flesh" and "Children of the Promise," as applied to the races which have Abraham for one common father.

(1) God, as we have shown, made a covenant with Abraham, in which it was promised that he should become the father of many nations, hence Abraham was the inheritor of a promise from God.

(2) Isaac, who was a natural son of Abraham and Sarah, according to the flesh, was not only the child of a special promise, but he was also the first child of the covenant promise.

(3) After the death of Abraham, God confirmed the original covenant promise to Isaac, the child of promise, as follows: "I will perform the oath which I swear unto Abraham thy father; and I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven, and I will give unto thy seed all these countries; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed." Hence Isaac also became the inheritor of a promise from the God of his father.

(4) The immediate posterity of Isaac, the promise-holder, were Jacob and Esau, the persons whom Paul uses in making his argument concerning the Lord's choice of race. Jacob, the younger of these two, who were twins, was chosen by the promise-maker, before they were born, to be the inheritor of the covenant promises. And so the Divine promiser reiterates those promises to him, as follows: "I am the Lord God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed: and thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed." Hence Jacob also received direct from the Lord the same covenant promises which had previously been given to his fathers.

(5) Since there can be no mistaking the purport of these covenant promises regarding a natural and multitudinous posterity for these promise-inheritors, and inasmuch as these promises were promised and re-promised, by the Divine promise-maker to the successive promise-holders, then, when that promised multitude of people shall have materialized, it is they, and they only, who can be called "The Children of the Promise." And the only crucial test is that they be Abraham's seed who have descended from Isaac through Jacob.

Thus it is that the natural seed of Abraham, whose genealogical tree sprouts from the Jacob roots, are the children of the promise, and that others are not, although they also be the natural sons of Abraham, but, not having come through the family line of the promise-inheritors, they are "the Children of the Flesh" only. While to Israelites only, the seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, pertain the promises, the covenants, the adoption, the glory, the special service, the giving of the divine law, and through whom, as concerning the flesh, Christ came. But no such national glory, honor, dignity, and exaltation are promised to those other nations which sprang from that same father through Ishmael, Esau, and the sons of Keturah: no, not even such glory as comes from the least of these covenants promises and blessings.

Consequently, we can see why the Lord always declares himself to be the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and not the God of Abraham, Ishmael, and Esau; and why it is that Paul's kinsmen according to the flesh are exclusively the children of the promise, for they are Israelites, to whom pertain the promises, etc. That is, they are the people who owe their existence to the fact that God was true to the promise which he made to Abraham, repeated to Isaac, and reiterated to Jacob, whose name was changed to Israel, and from whom come the elect people whose general racial name is Israel. Thus each individual member of the race is an Israelite, be he a good man or a bad one, and belongs to the elect or chosen people of God.

Therefore all this question of election between Jacob and Esau, which has caused so many unjust conceptions of God and his precious saving truth, is a question of Race, and not of Grace.

However, there is both an election of race and an election of grace, for Paul, when speaking of the seven thousand men who had not bowed the knee to Baal, declares that even now, "at this present time, also, there is a remnant according to the election of grace." But when he wrote regarding the attitude of a certain part of the elect race toward the election of grace, he says: "As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes; but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers' sakes." Here we find two elections, i.e., the election of race and the election of grace.

Touching the election of race, God could say, "And thou, Israel, art my servant whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham my friend." But, when it was a question of individual service or relation to him, even among his chosen people, he could throw the responsibility on them, and say: "Choose ye this day whom ye will serve." Or when pressing the subject of eternal life to be accepted or rejected by each member of that elect race, God could say: "See, I have this day set before thee life and death," and then exhort them to "Choose life!"

If it is a question of race election, and the fidelity of the Divine promise is at stake, it can be asserted that the will of God, independent of the will of others, can cause certain conditions to obtain; "that the purpose of God according to election might stand" -- not in the good or evil works, or unholy natures of unborn babes, "but of him that calleth."

When the call of God is of racial, or of national import, God can say: "Hearken unto me, O Jacob and Israel my called." But if it is a question of personal election to the grace of salvation, then faithful men of God may exhort other men, saying: "Give diligence to make your calling and election sure."

When it is race, it is, "Whom I (God) have chosen."

When it is grace, it is, "Whosoever will, may come and take the water of life freely."

When it is race, it is, "I have called thee by my name; thou art mine." In grace it is "Whosoever believeth," of whom the Lord says: "They are mine.

In grace it is, "Come."

In race it is fate, destiny, kismet.

One is a chosen race, and the other is a chosen way. The way is by faith that it might be of grace, but the choice of race is according to the predetermined and predestined purpose of God.

In race election it is generation, or born of the flesh.

In the election of grace it is regeneration, or born of the Spirit.

In grace it is, "Whosoever offereth praise glorifieth me;" but in race, it is, "This people have I formed for myself; they SHALL show forth my praise."

This declaration brings us to the consideration of the purpose, or object, which the Lord has in choosing, and forming a special race of men who, in spite of the wickedness of the great bulk of them, he calls his own chosen people, and whose national destiny he purposes to control.

Much of the manifest purpose of God touching this people is made known in that brief epitome given by the Apostle Paul, as quoted above, respecting the national honors of his own people. Figuratively speaking, every word in that resume of Israelitish history and the summing up of their honors weighs a ton. As we proceed with the story of Israel, it is our purpose to consider these facts in detail, but at this juncture we will take time only to say that, since the creation, no such opportunity, or such fitting cause, for national honor and greatness has ever come, or ever can come, to any other nation on the earth.

It would seem that their cup of glory was full to the overflow, when through them the Lord sent his word from Heaven, and spread it abroad over the face of the inhabited portions of the earth, and when God's word had been so fulfilled, and his purpose for them so fully accomplished that they could say: "Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder; and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace." When they could say this -- then it would seem that their cup of national greatness and glory was overflowing, and that the supreme purpose of God for them had been reached. But it is our glad privilege to tell you that there is in God's word a declared purpose, which must yet be accomplished through that elect race, and until it shall be fulfilled, all that which is done is robbed of fully nine-tenths of its power and glory; since, outside the realm of faith, millions are today hopelessly drifting on the shoals of constantly increasing forms of unbelief, and with the great majority of men, the word of God must forever be regarded as a cunningly devised fable, unless God has some plan of vindication for it and himself.

Furthermore, the great love of God is misunderstood and despised; the blood of the atonement is trampled upon; Christ is still considered by the many a bastard, a fraud, and a failure. He is still put to an open shame in the house of his professed friends; shipwrecks of a one-time faith and a present professed faith in him are scattered everywhere. And so it is that God, his Word, and his Christ, must yet be fully vindicated. And they shall be, for God has promised it; and when this vindication shall have been accomplished, then, and not till then, will Israel have reached the supreme climax of greatness and glory of the purpose for which the Lord has chosen her.

Harken ye unbelieving ones! Harken to this! -- "Thus saith the Lord that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel . . . ye are my witnesses, saith the Lord, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am He; before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me. I, even I, am the Lord; and beside me there is no Saviour. I have declared, and have saved, and I have showed, when there was no strange God among you: therefore ye are my witnesses, saith the Lord -- that I am God," Isa. 43:1,10-12.

Note this, "That YE may know and believe ME, and understand that I AM HE."

God not only intends to use the Israelites for the purpose of convincing them that he is God, and the only God, but he also intends to use them to convince the rest of the world. For he says: "I will sanctify my great name . . . and the heathen shall know that I am the Lord, saith the Lord God, when I shall be sanctified in you before their eyes," Ezek. 36:23.

This is the great purpose for which the Lord has chosen Israel, and when this is accomplished, they shall have reached the acme of national glory.

If you ask, "Is the history of Israel, as a whole, a Divine work? we answer, yes. But if you ask, "Is that history designed as a preparation for the moral creation which Jesus Christ came to effect?" Our answer is, no; the law which the Lord gave to his people was intended to accomplish that purpose; but the history of Israel, together with prophecies concerning them, many of which must yet become history, is for the vindication of God.

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part2

Post#2 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:32 am

Judah's Sceptre and Joseph's Birthright part 2


After the division which occurred among the seed of Abraham in the days of Jeroboam and Rehoboam, and before the two kingdoms had settled down to steady going, there arose several contingencies which we must understand, before we can intelligently follow their history any farther.

By consulting the eleventh chapter of Second Chronicles we find a brief recapitulation of the history of the revolt of the Ten Tribes, to which are added further details as to the result, a list of the cities which were built by Rehoboam for the defense of the kingdom of Judah, and the following:

"And he fortified the strongholds, and put captains in them, and stores of victuals, and of oil and wine. And in every several city he put shields and spears, and made them exceeding strong, having Judah and Benjamin on his side. And the priests and the Levites that were in all Israel [i.e., the territory of country occupied by the ten-tribed kingdom] resorted to him out of all their coasts. For the Levites left their suburbs and their possessions, and came to Judah and Jerusalem: for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them off from executing the priest's office unto the Lord: And he ordained him priests for the high places, and for the devils, and for the calves which lie had made. And after them out of all the tribes of Israel such as set their hearts to seek the Lord God of Israel came to Jerusalem, to sacrifice unto the Lord God of their fathers. So they strengthened the kingdom of Judah, and made Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, strong," 2 Chron. 11:11-17.

These statements make it clear that, after Jeroboam, the king of Israel, had set up those golden calves, and made priests of the lowest of the people, he would not allow the Levites, whom the Lord had made the priestly tribe of the race, execute any priestly offices, or to conduct any services unto the Lord God of their fathers; and for this reason they returned to Rehoboam, who already, as is affirmed, had the tribes of Judah and Benjamin on his side. Thus the kingdom of Judah, for a while at least, was composed of three tribes, in addition to those scattered families out of all the rest of the tribes who would not forsake the worship of the God of Israel, and who would not worship the calves which Jeroboam had set up; but those people evidently lost their tribal relations and were assimilated into one of the three tribes of which the kingdom of Judah was composed, for in all the history and prophecy which concerns the three-tribed kingdom, there are no tribal names used, save only those of Judah, Benjamin and Levi.

Before we carry the history of these two kingdoms any farther, or leave the A B C of this matter, we deem it important to place before our readers an array of Scripture texts, in which both houses, kingdoms, nations, or families of Abraham's posterity, through the Isaac-Jacob line, are spoken of in the same passage in such a way that the most simple minded cannot fail to see that two distinct peoples are being considered.

We cannot, however, at this juncture, give the relative place of these Scriptures, as regards the history, past, present and future, of these people under consideration. We place these Scriptures before you, only to show, at present, that ever after the division of the people into two commonwealths, in the days of Rehoboam and Jeroboam, they were recognized in scriptural history and prophecy as two kingdoms or nations.

For instance, take the following -- "Behold the days come, saith the Lord, that I will perform that good thing which I have promised unto the house of Israel, and to the house of Judah," Jer. 33:14. Here the Lord has promised to perform a certain, "good thing" for "the house of Israel;" but he has just as assuredly promised to perform that same certain "good thing" for the house of Judah, as well as for Israel, for the house of Judah is not included in the house of Israel, and vice versa.

Take another, as follows: "And I will cause the captivity of Judah and the captivity of Israel to return, and will build them as at the first," Jer. 33:7. Here it is a question not only of "the captivity of Judah," but also "the captivity of Israel." Neither is it a question only of the return of the captivity of Judah, for there is promised also in the same sentence the return of the captivity of Israel, i.e., a people who are not included with "Judah."

Again, "For lo! the days come, saith the Lord, that I will bring again the captivity of my people Israel and Judah, saith the Lord: and I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it. And these are the words that the Lord spake concerning Israel and concerning Judah," Jer. 30:3, 4. Here is something that concerns Judah; but it also concerns Israel; and the people whom it concerns are "my people Israel and Judah." So, if Judah, the Jews, are the people of the Lord, then the Lord has a people besides the Jews whom he calls Israel, and who are not counted among the Jews.

Still another: "For the children of Israel, and the children of Judah have only done evil before me from their youth," Jer. 32:30. You see that while speaking of the evildoing of his people, it was not sufficient for the Lord to speak of the children of Israel only, but the children of Judah must also be included, in order to embrace all who are under consideration.

In Jer. 13:11, we have indisputable proofs of the two houses, since the broadest generic terms possible are used. Here it is: "For as a girdle cleaveth to the loins of a man, so have I caused to cleave unto me the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah, saith the Lord; that they might be unto me for a people, and for a name, and for a praise, and for a glory; but they would not hear." This statement gives us to understand that "the whole house of Judah" are not all of the Lord's people, and that "the whole house of Israel" are not all of the Lord's people; but that it takes "the whole house of Israel" together with "the whole house of Judah" to make all of his chosen people.

It also proves that there is a people called "the whole house of Israel" of which "the whole house of Judah" is regarded as neither part nor parcel. True, they are brethren, because they all are of the seed of Jacob. As such, they are Jacobites -- or, since Jacob's name was changed to Israel his descendants may all be called Israelites. But it is a fact that the seed of Jacob have been divided, by the will, the decree, and the direct intervention of God, into two kingdoms, or nations, one of which, when politically considered, is called "the whole house of Israel," "the children of Israel," "the house of Israel," "all Israel," and "Israel"; while the other nation is called "the whole house of Judah," "the house of Judah," "the children of Judah," "all Judah," and "Judah," or "the Jews."

The name Jew is derived from, or rather is a corruption of, the name of Judah (Singular Ju-dah, or Jew-dah; plural, Ju-dahs, or Jew-dahs; possessive, Ju-dah's, or Jew-dah's; contracted, Jew, Jews and Jew's). Since it is that the names Jew and Jews are applied only to the people who composed the kingdom of Judah. Also it was their land only which was designated as "Judah" and "all Judah," and which finally became known as "Judea" and "Jewry," "all Judea" and "ALL JEWRY."

Indeed, long before the division took place, Moses, while prophesying unto the seed of Jacob, cried out, "Hear, Lord, the voice of Judah, and bring him unto his people." This can mean nothing else, except that Judah was to be separated from his people, and finally, if that prayer is ever answered, was to be brought back to them.

But let us continue our array of texts in which both houses are mentioned, almost in the same breath. "And I saw when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah, feared not, but went and played the harlot also," Jer. 3:8.



Here Israel and Judah are not the same;

They are only sisters, both in shame.



"And the Lord said unto me, That backsliding Israel bath justified herself more than treacherous Judah," Jer. 3:11.



Here Israel, in idolatry the adulterous,

Is justified more than Judah, the treacherous:



although God had said, "Though thou, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah offend," Hosea 4:15. And he also said, "I will no more have mercy upon the house of Israel [that I should altogether pardon them Margin]. But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah, and will save them by the Lord their God," Hosea 1:6, 7.

The name, "Jerusalem" is often used to designate the Jewish people because it was their chief city. When Jesus wept over the city and cried out 'Jerusalem, Jerusalem . . . how oft would I have gathered you as a hen gathereth her brood under her wing, but ye would not!" he did not mean the streets and buildings of the city, but the people; and not only the people dwelling within the walls, but the nation as well. For it was not only the Jewish capital -- but it was their metropolis, their commercial center, their citadel, their royal city, their sanctuary and in every way the representative city of their nation.

This being true, we may expect that the name of the capital city of the ten-tribed kingdom would be used as a representative name and applied to that nation. Also, since the name of Judah was given as a national name for the Jewish people, because of the fact that it was one of the royal sons from the tribe of Judah who led the revolt when she became a separate nation, and the fact that her kings were of Judah's line, thus making the tribe of Judah the representative tribe, so we might expect the same thing with reference to the ten-tribed kingdom. Jeroboam reigned over Israel in Shechem twenty-two years, and was succeeded by Nadab, his son, who reigned two years. After this, Baasha conspired against him, killed him, and reigned in his stead; but he moved the capital to Tirzah, where he reigned for twenty-four years, and was followed by his son, Elah, who reigned in that city two years. Then he was conspired against by Zimri, who reigned only seven days, until he in turn was conspired against and died by burning the king's house down over his own head. Then Omri, who had conspired against Zimri and succeeded him to the throne, bought a hill from Shemar, on which he built the city of Samaria, which became the permanent capital of the kingdom of Israel. Hence the name of the chief city of Israel, Samaria, is often used, when referring to Israel, in the same representative way that Jerusalem is, in the case of the Jews.

For an example take the following: "Thy Calf, O Samaria, hath cast thee off; mine anger is kindled against them: how long will it be ere they attain to innocency? For from Israel was it also: the workman made it; therefore it is not God: but the Calf of Samaria shall be broken in pieces," Hosea 8:5, 6. Of course, the calf herein referred to is the calf worship instituted by Jeroboam, who caused Israel to sin, and since the calves were made by the workmen of Israel, they were not God. So we see that Samaria stands for Israel, whose capital it is, and whose own workmen had made the calf which they themselves worshiped.

But this nation has another name which stands for the whole, as well as that of Israel and Samaria. Look ye! "When I would have healed Israel, then the iniquity of Ephraim was discovered, and the wickedness of Samaria: for they commit falsehood," Hosea 7:1.

Thus we see that the name of Ephraim is used as a representative name for the northern kingdom, just as the name of Judah is used for the southern kingdom, and that the names Israel, Ephraim and Samaria are used as names of the ten-tribed kingdom in contradistinction to those of the three-tribed kingdom, which are Judah, Jerusalem, and the Jews.

On the very day on which Moses died, while he was reiterating and enlarging upon the prophecies which Jacob had given at the time of his death, he made a prophecy concerning the pre-eminence of Ephraim in Joseph-Israel, as follows: "Let the blessing come upon the head of Joseph, and upon the top of the head of him that was separated from his brethren. His glory is like the firstling of his bullock, and his horns are like the horns of unicorns: with them he shall push the people together to the ends of the earth: and they are the ten thousands of Ephraim, and they are the thousands of Manasseh."

With the name of Ephraim standing at the head of one of the two nations of Jacob, and the name of Judah at the head of the other, we can easily understand such expressions as the following: "O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? For your goodness is as a morning cloud, and as the early dew it goeth away," Hosea 6:4.

Since both Judah, the fourth son of Jacob, and Ephraim, the second son of Joseph, had been dead for nearly one thousand years prior to the writing of these Scriptures which we have just given, we must know that these are national names, used to represent the national conditions of the two nations which are addressed.

So, also, is the following: "Therefore will I be unto Ephraim as a moth, and to the house of Judah as rottenness. When Ephraim saw his sickness, and Judah saw his wound, then went Ephraim to the Assyrian, and sent to King Jared; yet he could not heal you of your wound. For I will be unto Ephraim as a lion, and as a young lion to the house of Judah: I, even I, will tear and go away, and none shall rescue them. I will go and return to my place, until they acknowledge their offence, and seek my face: in their affliction they will seek me early," Hosea 5:12-15.

Before proceeding further with the history of these two kingdoms, there is one other point which must be settled once for all. This is that the people of God whom he distinctively calls "Israel," the heads of which are the birthright holders, unto whom was given that national name -- it coming to them with the birthright at the time of the transfer of that inheritance -- are not Jews, that the Holy Spirit has never, either in Biblical history or prophecy, called them Jews, and that they have never been called Jews except by uninformed historians and by unscriptural teachers of the Word of God.

Understand us: we do not say that the Jews are not Israelites; they belong to the posterity of Jacob, who was called Israel; hence they are all Israelites. But the great bulk of Israelites are not the Jews, just as the great bulk of Americans are not Californians, and yet all Californians are Americans; also, as in writing the history of America we must of necessity write the history of California, because California is a part of America; but we could write a history of California without writing a history of America.

So, in writing the history of Israel we must needs write the history of the Jews, but we could write the history of the Jews and not write the history of Israel. Or, in other words, in writing the history of the many nations we must write the history of the Jews, for, to say the least, they are one of those many nations; but in writing the history of the Jews, it would he utterly impossible to write the history of the many nations which were promised to the birthright people, whose national name is, in a special sense, Israel, and whose people are not Jews. Nationally speaking, they are brother nations, but not always very brotherly. But if we can keep track of the birthright nation, and if they ever have that birthright promise fulfilled to them, then, and only then, can we write the history of the many nations which the Lord God of Israel promised unto their fathers Abraham, Isaac, Jacob-Israel, Joseph, and Ephraim and Manasseh.

It will help us much in our study of this question, to know just when and under what circumstances the word Jew is first used in the canon of Sacred Scripture.

It was not until more than two hundred years after the revolt of the ten tribes from the house of David. It was at a time when Pekah, son of Remaliah, king of Israel, formed a federation with Rezin, king of Syria, and came up against Ahaz, king of Judah, to war for acquisition of territory. Notice how the prophet of God speaks of these three nations Israel, Syria and Judah. He declares: "And it came to pass in the days of Ahaz, the son of Jotham, the son of Uziah, king of Judah, that Rezin, the king of Syria, and Pekah, the son of Remaliah, king of Israel, went up toward Jerusalem to war against it [Jerusalem was the throne seat of Judah] but could not prevail against it. And it was told the house of David, saying, Syria is confederate with Ephraim," Isa. 7:1, 2. The prophet further explains, that "The head of Syria is Damascus, [Damascus was the capital of Syria] and the head of Damascus is Rezin [King of Syria]; and within threescore-and-five [65] years shall Ephraim be broken that it be not a people. (Margin: from being a people). And the head of Ephraim is Samaria, and the head of Samaria is Remaliah's son," Isa. 7:8, 9. Remaliah's son was Pekah, king of Israel.

What Isaiah had to say concerning this war was for the purpose of making prophecies concerning the outcome. We must pass over the prophecies for the present, as our object now is to show the difference between the Jew and Israel and we have simply quoted sufficient for our purpose.

We now turn to the historic record of that war, and read: "In the seventeenth year [as king] of Pekah, the son of Remaliah, Ahaz, the son of Jotham, king of Judah, began to reign, and reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem . . . Then Rezin, king of Syria, and Pekah, son of Remaliah, king of Israel, came up to Jerusalem to war; and they besieged Ahaz (king of Judah), but could not overcome him. At that time Rezin, king of Syria, recovered Elath to Syria, and drave the Jews from Elath; and the Syrians dwell there unto this day. So Ahaz sent messengers to Tiglathpileser, king of Assyria, saying, I am thy servant and thy son; come up and save me out of the hand of the king of Syria, and out of the hand of the king of Israel, which rise up against me," 2 Kings 16: 1, 2, 5-7.

Here we have it clearly stated that in this war the besieging party is, "Pekah, the king of Israel," who is the "head of Samaria," which is the head of "Ephraim," together with another nation with whom they are confederate. And if we put it as Isaiah does concerning the other house, the besieged party was "Ahaz, king of Judah," head of "the Jews," whose head is "Jerusalem," the head of the house of David.

Do you see the point? The king of Judah, or the king of the Jews, was besieged in his capital, and wanted to form an alliance with the king of Assyria and, to secure him as an ally, even fawned upon the king of Assyria, saying "I am thy servant, thy son," and crying "Come up!" What for? To save the JEWS from the hand of ISRAEL.

Thus we see that the first time the word Jews is used in the history of the Abrahamic race is at a time when the Jews and Israel were at war with each other. Hence we ask, If the Jews were the besieged and Israel was with the besiegers, how can it be possible that the Jews and Israel are one and the same people?

According to the conclusion of the great number of our learned men, also some "higher (?) critics," we must needs conclude that the Jews were fighting their own shadow, which would be reducing the whole matter to an argumentation ad absurdum.

It is high time for the Christian world, yea, and all secular historians, too, "to awake out of sleep," take the advice of the learned Apostle Paul and "cease giving heed to Jewish fables" and quit telling the people that all Israelites are Jews. It is not true, never has been and never can be, for the difference between them is not only political and territorial but it is semi-racial. For, although the inheritors of the Sceptre and the Birthright were sons of the same father, they were not sons of the same mother, and thus they were only half brothers. This, together with the fact that Leah is described as "tender-eyed" and Rachel was said to be "fair," would make some strong facial and physical distinctions in the posterity of the two families. But when we remember that Joseph married an Egyptian princess, thus blending the best Semitic blood with the royal blood of Egypt, and making the posterity of Joseph half-blood Egyptian, then we must know that while the children of Joseph are half Israelitish they are still three-fourths removed from the children of Judah. This one would make great changes in their physique and largely eradicate all facial resemblances.

The fact that Ephraim and Manasseh, the sons of Joseph, who were the final inheritors of the Birthright, were half-blood Egyptians is that which made it necessary for Jacob to adopt them and make them fully his own, as Reuben and Simeon were his, before he could confer upon them the covenant Birthright. This is the adoption to which the Apostle Paul refers in his argument concerning the Children of the Promise versus the Children of the Flesh, as follows: "Israelites, to whom pertaineth the adoption, and the covenants, and the glory, and the giving of the law, and the service, and the promises; whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came." Here Israelites as a whole, including both houses, are spoken of. Hence, to all who really believe, claim, or teach that the Jews ONLY are Israelites, and of all who believe that the word adoption, as used in this connection, can possibly have reference in any way to spiritual adoption we ask: When, how, or where did there ever occur an adoption, either spiritual or racial, among the Jews as a nation?

No answer required. Please reflect.

An eminent theological professor, who gives an exegesis of the Sunday-school lessons for the most prominent denominational papers in this country, began his exposition on "The Call of Abraham" as follows: "We come now to the third of the great landmarks of history, the call of Abraham. From being a universal history the record becomes national. Hereafter, we have to do with one people, the Jews. In the founder of the Jewish nation we find not a conqueror or a lawgiver but a saint." Yet it is fact that the term "Jews" is not used in writing the history of the Abrahamic people until twelve hundred years after the call of Abraham.

Another theological professor, of one of our largest training schools, defines "The Jews" as "A name given to all the descendants of Abraham." Ah!!! We ask -- When?

Still another defines "The Jews": "A name given to the descendants of Abraham, who were divided into twelve tribes"; and yet it is a fact that in the Scriptures the name "Jews" was given only to those who dwelt in Jewry, which country was occupied by the tribes of Judah, Benjamin and Levi, and did not include Samaria, the home of the ten-tribed kingdom.

No; it is a fiction which has been foisted upon us by modern scholars, many of whom are presidents and professors of universities, colleges and theological seminaries, editors of religious and secular newspapers, doctors of divinity and church dignitaries, that the words "Jew" and "Jews" are equivalent to "Israel," "Israelites," "Israelitish," "Hebrew" and "Hebraic."

By not distinguishing Israel from Judah we have in the Bible a historical and prophetic chain which can never be linked together, and which sets all of the writers at variance with one another; for we cause Isaiah to question statements made by Jeremiah; set Joel, Amos, and Zephaniah against Zechariah; cause Jeremiah to convict Hosea of being a false prophet; then make Ezekiel step in and contradict them both and many others in such a manner that one prophet is made to give the lie to the other.

We feel sorry for the so-called "Higher Critics," for they really do find trouble, but they cannot conceive that this trouble could, by any possible chance, arise because of their misconception of the subject matter; hence it must be in the style [stylus -- a pen] or manner of the prophet. Thus if any of the prophets chance to reveal a mannerism at one time which is not so plainly manifest at another, then the exclamations, Ah! Eureka! We've found it! There are two of them!" are heard to vibrate and revibrate throughout the ecclesiastical world.

Is it any wonder that skepticism is rampant, both iti the church and out of it, since the common error of Christendom is to regard the Jews as the whole house of Israel? Is it any wonder that Tom Paine lost his soul while following the beaten path of this fallacy? For he did give the Bible up as a myth, and boldly states in his writings that he was led into infidelity because he saw that the Jews did not and never could verify the promises concerning Israel.

For it is true that God had declared, through Micah, of Israel, who was divorced and cast far off, that he would (at the proper time) make her a strong nation; while Judah was to become a remnant. Isaiah, Hosea, Jeremiah and the New Testament declare Israel to be lost; while both Jeremiah and Ezekiel affirm that Judah is well known. Hosea declares Israel to be as "the sands for multitude"; while Jeremiah insists that Judah is "few in number" and a remnant. Isaiah, David, Micah, Jeremiah and others declare that Israel is the strongest war power on earth, never to be conquered by a Gentile power; and yet Jeremiah declares that Judah is "without might;" while Daniel bemoans and records the fact that the Jews will be conquered by a Gentile power. The entire line of prophets from Moses down declare Israel to be a continuous monarchy, whose sceptre is held by the seed of David; while Judah is to be "without government" of their own, but are to be ruled over. Hosea declares that "Israel shall ride" but "Judah shall plow."

Moses also declares that there shall come a time in the history of Israel (the ten tribes) when they also shall "be few in number," and yet it is prophesied concerning them that they shall obtain possession of "great possessions," inheriting and establishing (peopling) the desolate places of the earth, rule many heathen nations, have a great revenue, become the "mart of nations," hold the keys of commerce, be "exalted above their neighbors," and become "the chief of nations." But, on the other hand, Judah is to be "without geographical inheritance," "strangers in all countries," "howl for vexation of spirit," "leave their name for a curse," "be ashamed," and "cry for sorrow of heart" until the great day of Jezreel.


THE BROKEN BROTHERHOOD



In the last chapter we gave much testimony from the Scripture showing that the ten-tribed kingdom is dealt with, both in history and prophecy -- much of which is yet unfulfilled -- as the house of Israel, and other titles, some of which you will find quite prominent in this chapter; while the three-tribed kingdom, which is composed of the Jewish people, is dealt with as the house of Judah and the Jews. If any of our readers are not yet satisfied on this point we promise that they shall still have abundant opportunity to become thoroughly convinced. Prof. C. A. L. Totten, of Yale University, says: "I can never be too thankful to the Almighty that in my youth he used the late Professor Wilson to show me the difference between the two houses. The very understanding of this difference is the KEY by which almost the entire Bible becomes intelligible, and I cannot state too strongly that the man who has not yet seen that Israel of the Scripture is totally distinct from the Jewish people, is yet in the very infancy, the mere alphabet, of Biblical study, and that to this day the meaning of seven-eighths of the Bible is shut to his understanding." This will become more and more apparent as we proceed with a few brief outlines of the histories of these two kingdoms.

Israel displeased the Lord by her idolatry, but it is quite evident that, for some time after the division, Judah pleased him by her faithfulness; and it is also evident that, for a short period, fraternal relations existed between the two kingdoms. These evidences are found in the history of the war which occurred between Israel and Moab in the days of Jehoram, the son of Ahab, king of Israel, and of Jehoshaphat, king of Judah.

During the reign of Ahab he had conquered Moab, and the king of Moab paid him a revenue of one hundred thousand lambs and one hundred thousand rams, with the wool. But upon the ascension of Ahab's son to the throne of Israel the king of Moab rebelled against him; and so it is recorded that "King Jehoram went out of Samaria at that same time, and numbered all Israel," 2 Kings 3:6.

Here the expression "all Israel" has reference to all the region of country which was occupied by the ten tribes of which the kingdom of Israel was composed. Samaria was their capital city and the dwelling place of the king; but when the king of Moab rebelled against him it was but natural, and also good generalship, that he should want to know the fighting strength of the kingdom. So he made a tour throughout the realm that he might know just how many fighting men he had. But it seems that he returned fully satisfied that he did not have an army of sufficient strength to insure victory, for he sent a message to the king of Judah, saying:

"The king of Moab hath rebelled against me. Wilt thou go with me against Moab to battle?" To this the king of Judah replied in the affirmative, saying: "I will go up: I am as thou art, and my people as thy people."

As a matter of course he could say, "My people are as thy people," for the people were brethren and subjects of brother nations, all being seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the Children of the Promise. These two kings further decided, while holding a council of war, to go up by the way of the wilderness of Edom, and to ask the king of Edom to join with them against the Moabites. For the Edomites were also kinfolks of these two nations, they being the descendants of Esau, the brother of Jacob, whose name was changed to Edom after he sold his birthright.

The king of Edom consented to go with them, and thus the Children of the Flesh and the Children of the Promise made common cause, and went up together against the king of Moab. But when they had made a seven-days' journey they got into trouble, for there was no water for that great army of men and the beasts of burden which they were compelled to have with them.

At the beginning of the chapter which contains the history of this war concerning the king of Israel, we have the following: "Now Jehoram, the son of Ahab, began to reign over Israel in Samaria in the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat, king of Judah, and he reigned twelve years. And wrought evil in the sight of the Lord, but not like his father and his mother; for he put away the image of Baal that his father had made. Nevertheless he cleaved unto the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, which made Israel to sin; he departed not therefrom."

But as soon as they were in trouble and the idolatrous king of Israel found there was no water, then in startled fear he cried out, saying: "The Lord hath brought us three kings out here to destroy us."

Now quickly, when tortured with guilty fear, the idolater knew there was a LORD who had power to destroy them, or at least to destroy him, for he knew that he deserved it, and only said "us three" because of a spirit of guilty cowardice which hoped to shift the responsibility, or, if failing in that, to insist that others were fully as much to blame as he-which is so often seen in frightened but impenitent men. But it was not so with Jehoshaphat, the God-fearing king of Judah, for he at once asked: "Is there not here a prophet of the Lord that we may inquire of the Lord by him?"

No doubt, the thought of Jehoshaphat in asking this question was that by making inquiry of the Lord they would receive such Divine instruction as would enable them to escape the threatened danger; for when one of the servants of the king of Israel, upon hearing this inquiry, stepped forward and informed them that Elisha the prophet was with the company the king of Judah rejoiced and said: "The word of the Lord is with him."

When Elisha was found and these three kings were ushered into his presence he addressed himself to the king of Israel, saying: "What have I to do with thee? Get thee to the prophets of thy father and to the prophets of thy mother." But to this the king, still fearful, vouchsafed only the reply, "Nay: for the Lord hath called these three kings together, to deliver them into the hand of Moab.

Then Elisha said: "As the Lord of Hosts liveth, before whom I stand, surely, were it not that I regard the presence of Jehoshaphat, the king of Judah, I would not look toward thee, nor see thee."

There are reasons given, and they are weighty ones, why the prophet of God should regard the king of Judah and emphasize the fact of his presence, in contrast to the king of Israel; for, through the prophet Hosea the Lord declares: "Ephraim compasseth me about with lies, and the house of Israel with deceit: but Judah yet ruleth with God, and is faithful with the saints."

Ah, yes; Judah is not only faithful among the saints, but she yet has power and ruling influence with God. Here are reasons, abundant, for that honorable distinction which was conferred upon Judah and her God-honoring king. It was because of them that the Lord sent water to that famishing army and gave them victory over the Moabites. But Israel and her king, although serving Jeroboam's calves, yet, in a time of trouble, when moved by guilty fear, admitted the power of the God of their fathers. Hence "lies and deceit" were in Ephraim-Israel, but faithfulness -- as yet -- among the Jewish people.

But there came a time when Judah was not among the faithful, and when she lost her power with God; and there also came a time when the fraternal relations were broken between these brother nations. There are many instances of the severance of brotherly harmony between these nations, but the following instance, which occurred in the days of Amaziah, king of Judah, and Joash, king of Israel, not only reveals the broken ties but justifies the term Ephraim-Israel.

"Moreover, Amaziah gathered Judah together and made them captains over thousands and over hundreds, according to the houses of their fathers through all Judah and Benjamin [the Levites were priests, not warriors], and he numbered them from twenty years old and above, and found them three hundred thousand choice men, able to go forth to war, that could handle spear and shield. He hired an hundred thousand mighty men of valour out of Israel, for a hundred talents of silver. But there came a man of God to him, saying, 'O king, let not the army of Israel go with thee, for the Lord is not with Israel, to wit, all the children of Ephraim. But if thou wilt go and do it, to be strong for the battle, God shall make thee fall before the enemy; for God hath power to help and to cast down.'

"And Amaziah said unto the man of God, But what shall we do with the hundred talents which I have given to the army of Israel? And the man of God answered, The Lord is able to give thee much more than this. Then Amaziah separated them, to wit, the army that was come to him out of Ephraim, to go home again: wherefore their anger was greatly kindled against Judah, and they returned home in great anger. And . . . the soldiers of the army which Amaziah sent back, that they should not go with him to battle, fell upon the cities of Judah, from Samaria even to Beth-boron, and smote three thousand of them, and took much spoil."

Thus we see that the terms Israel and Ephraim are used interchangeably, for at one time we read "the army out of Israel," and at another, but concerning the same transaction, "the army that is come out of Ephraim." Also the man of God told the king of the Jews that, if he went into battle with the hundred thousand men that he had hired out of Israel, the Lord would defeat him, for God was not with Israel, to wit, Ephraim. And further, when the king of Judah sent the soldiers back home he sent them from the nation which the sacred history calls "the Jews" to that which is called "Israel."

There is one other point which must not be overlooked at this juncture; that is, that Ephraim is the representative of the house of Joseph; that Joseph represents the Birthright blessing, which carries with it the promise of a multitude of children, which was originally given to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and that it sometimes occurs that the name of Joseph, the father, instead of Ephraim, the son, is used when recording facts of history or prophecy concerning the ten-tribed kingdom. This does not often occur, but the following is an instance:

"And I will strengthen the house of Judah, and I will save the house of Joseph, and I will bring them again to place them; for I have mercy upon them: and they shall be as though I had not cast them off: for I am the Lord their God, and will hear them. And Ephraim shall be like a mighty man, and their heart shall rejoice as through wine," Zech. 10:6, 8.

This text clearly shows that the names of Ephraim and Joseph are titles of the ten-tribed kingdom, in contradistinction from Judah and the Jews as titles of the three-tribed kingdom. And, since it is true that Judah and Joseph are the inheritors of the two special promises which pertain to the two covenants, we need not be surprised at this, but should rather expect that these two names would stand thus contrasted. But all the more should we expect this, when we see the fact so clearly revealed in the history of the posterity of these two men that the Birthright name and people are representatives of one nation, and that Judah's sceptre is swaying over the other.

But these facts are still more clearly brought out in one of Ezekiel's prophecies, as follows: "Moreover, thou son of man, take thee one stick and write upon it, for Judah, and for the children of Israel his companions: then take another stick, and write upon it for Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel, his companions. And join them one to another into one stick, and they shall become one in thine hand. And when the children of thy people shall speak unto thee, saying, Wilt thou not shew us what thou meanest by these? say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God: Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah and make them one in my hand. And the sticks wherein thou writest shall be in thy hand before their eyes. And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God: Behold I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side and bring them into their own land. And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all, and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they he divided into two kingdoms any more at all. Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions: but I will save them out of all their dwelling-places, wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God," Ezekiel, 37:15-23.

Many things will need to be explained before we can show the relative place in the history of these people of all the facts herein mentioned. But this much is clear:

(1) That there are two sticks, two nations, or kingdoms.

(2) That Judah, who inherited the sceptre and crown, has one of those sticks, kingdoms, or nations; while Joseph-Ephraim has the other.

(3) That Judah has with him as companions some of "the children of Israel," and that Ephraim has some of "the tribes of Israel," who are his fellows; and his companions.

(4) That when this prophecy was written they were divided; and that all the people belonging to the race had gathered, either to Judah or Joseph, or in other words, either to the Sceptre or to the Birthright.

(5) That at some future time they are again to be united, become one kingdom, and then remain so forever.

(6) That when they are thus united, one king shall be king over them all, and when this takes place the people will have been so lifted up by Divine power and so enriched by grace that they will no more defile themselves, commit no transgressions, or in any way displease the Lord, but shall be his accepted people, and he shall be their God.

Evidently one of these sticks is the Sceptre and the other the Birthright; for these and the promises connected with each are of general interest to all the children of promise, but they are the exclusive property of the two men, Judah and Joseph, who are the special subjects of the prophecy, while the entire posterity of Jacob is the general subject. But this figure of the two sticks, or staffs, is used in another prophecy, which pertains to the two houses and which should be of profound interest to all.

Beginning in the midst of the seventh verse of the eleventh chapter of Zachariah, we have the following: "I took unto me two staves; the one I called Beauty, and the other I called Bands . . . And I took my staff, even Beauty, and cut it asunder, that I might break my covenant which I had made with all the people. And it was broken in that day: and so the poor of the flock that waited upon me knew that it was the Word of the Lord. And I said unto them, If ye think good, give me my price; and if not, forbear. So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver.

"And the Lord said unto me, Cast it to the potter: a goodly price that I was priced at of them. And I took thirty pieces of silver and cast them to the potter in the house of the Lord. Then I cut asunder mine other staff, even Bands, that I might break the brotherhood between Israel and Judah," Zech. 11:7-14.

So Israel and Judah are the two sticks or staves which the Lord took unto himself. He first cut asunder one stick or staff called Beauty, i.e., ten-tribed Israel. Then, after a certain transaction in which their Lord was sold for thirty pieces of silver, he cut asunder his other staff, called Bands (i.e., Judah, the Jews), that he might break the brotherhood between Judah and Israel!

Just what a great and marvelously fulfilled truth is herein declared we are not yet prepared to explain. At this juncture we can only call your attention to the fact that Ezekiel's prophecy concerning the putting together of the two sticks could not have been fulfilled until after the transaction which concerns the thirty pieces of silver; and that when it does take place it must be in harmony not only with those blessed results, which we have already mentioned, but also with that which is contained in the rest of that prophecy, a part of which is as follows:

"And they shall dwell in the land that I have given to Jacob my servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, even they, and their children, and their children's children forever: and my servant David shall be their prince forever.

"Moreover, I will make a covenant of peace with them; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them: and I will place them and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore."

The brotherhood is still broken, but it shall be mended.

pokerkid
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JACOB'S SEED DIVIDED INTO TWO KINGDOMS

Post#3 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:51 am

JACOB'S SEED DIVIDED INTO TWO KINGDOMS

pokerkid
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Posts: 7781

ALL ISRAELITES ARE NOT JEWS

Post#4 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:52 am

ALL ISRAELITES ARE NOT JEWS
Sha Sha
Posted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 1:34 am Reply with quote Edit/Delete this post Delete this post View IP address of poster
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After the division which occurred among the seed of Abraham in the days of Jeroboam and Rehoboam, and before the two kingdoms had settled down to steady going, there arose several contingencies which we must understand, before we can intelligently follow their history any farther.

By consulting the eleventh chapter of Second Chron­icles we find a brief recapitulation of the history of the revolt of the Ten Tribes, to which are added further de­tails as to the result, a list of the cities which were built by Rehoboam for the defense of the kingdom of Judah, and the following:

"And he fortified the strongholds, and put captains in them, and stores of victuals, and of oil and wine. And in every several city he put shields and spears, and made them exceeding strong, having Judah and Benja­min on his side. And the priests and the Levites that were in all Israel [i.e., the territory of country occu­pied by the ten-tribed kingdom] resorted to him out of all their coasts. For the Levites left their suburbs and their possessions, and came to Judah and Jerusa­lem: for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them off from executing the priest's office unto the Lord: And he ordained him priests for the high places, and for the devils, and for the calves which lie had made. And after them out of all the tribes of Israel such as set their hearts to seek the Lord God of Israel came to Jerusa­lem, to sacrifice unto the Lord God of their fathers. So they strengthened the kingdom of Judah, and made Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, strong," 2 Chron. 11:11-17.

These statements make it clear that, after Jeroboam, the king of Israel, had set up those golden calves, and made priests of the lowest of the people, he would not allow the Levites, whom the Lord had made the priestly tribe of the race, execute any priestly offices, or to con­duct any services unto the Lord God of their fathers; and for this reason they returned to Rehoboam, who already, as is affirmed, had the tribes of Judah and Ben­jamin on his side. Thus the kingdom of Judah, for a while at least, was composed of three tribes, in addition to those scattered families out of all the rest of the tribes who would not forsake the worship of the God of Israel, and who would not worship the calves which Jeroboam had set up; but those people evidently lost their tribal relations and were assimilated into one of the three tribes of which the kingdom of Judah was composed, for in all the history and prophecy which concerns the three-tribed kingdom, there are no tribal names used, save only those of Judah, Benjamin and Levi.

Before we carry the history of these two kingdoms any farther, or leave the A B C of this matter, we deem it important to place before our readers an array of Scripture texts, in which both houses, kingdoms, na­tions, or families of Abraham's posterity, through the Isaac-Jacob line, are spoken of in the same passage in such a way that the most simple minded cannot fail to see that two distinct peoples are being considered.

We cannot, however, at this juncture, give the rela­tive place of these Scriptures, as regards the history, past, present and future, of these people under consid­eration. We place these Scriptures before you, only to show, at present, that ever after the division of the people into two commonwealths, in the days of Rehoboam and Jeroboam, they were recognized in scriptural history and prophecy as two kingdoms or nations.

For instance, take the following -- "Behold the days come, saith the Lord, that I will perform that good thing which I have promised unto the house of Israel, and to the house of Judah," Jer. 33:14. Here the Lord has promised to perform a certain, "good thing" for "the house of Israel;" but he has just as assuredly promised to perform that same certain "good thing" for the house of Judah, as well as for Israel, for the house of Judah is not included in the house of Israel, and vice versa.

Take another, as follows: "And I will cause the cap­tivity of Judah and the captivity of Israel to return, and will build them as at the first," Jer. 33:7. Here it is a question not only of "the captivity of Judah," but also "the captivity of Israel." Neither is it a ques­tion only of the return of the captivity of Judah, for there is promised also in the same sentence the return of the captivity of Israel, i.e., a people who are not included with "Judah."

Again, "For lo! the days come, saith the Lord, that I will bring again the captivity of my people Israel and Judah, saith the Lord: and I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it. And these are the words that the Lord spake concerning Israel and concerning Judah," Jer. 30:3, 4. Here is something that concerns Judah; but it also concerns Israel; and the people whom it concerns are "my people Israel and Judah." So, if Judah, the Jews, are the people of the Lord, then the Lord has a people besides the Jews whom he calls Israel, and who are not counted among the Jews.

Still another: "For the children of Israel, and the children of Judah have only done evil before me from their youth," Jer. 32:30. You see that while speak­ing of the evildoing of his people, it was not sufficient for the Lord to speak of the children of Israel only, but the children of Judah must also be included, in order to embrace all who are under consideration.

In Jer. 13:11, we have indisputable proofs of the two houses, since the broadest generic terms possible are used. Here it is: "For as a girdle cleaveth to the loins of a man, so have I caused to cleave unto me the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah, saith the Lord; that they might be unto me for a people, and for a name, and for a praise, and for a glory; but they would not hear." This statement gives us to under­stand that "the whole house of Judah" are not all of the Lord's people, and that "the whole house of Israel" are not all of the Lord's people; but that it takes "the whole house of Israel" together with "the whole house of Judah" to make all of his chosen people.

It also proves that there is a people called "the whole house of Israel" of which "the whole house of Judah" is regarded as neither part nor parcel. True, they are brethren, because they all are of the seed of Jacob. As such, they are Jacobites -- or, since Jacob's name was changed to Israel his descendants may all be called Israelites. But it is a fact that the seed of Jacob have been divided, by the will, the decree, and the direct in­tervention of God, into two kingdoms, or nations, one of which, when politically considered, is called "the whole house of Israel," "the children of Israel," "the house of Israel," "all Israel," and "Israel"; while the other nation is called "the whole house of Judah," "the house of Judah," "the children of Judah," "all Judah," and "Judah," or "the Jews."

The name Jew is derived from, or rather is a corrup­tion of, the name of Judah (Singular Ju-dah, or Jew-dah; plural, Ju-dahs, or Jew-dahs; possessive, Ju-dah's, or Jew-dah's; contracted, Jew, Jews and Jew's). Since it is that the names Jew and Jews are applied only to the people who composed the kingdom of Judah. Also it was their land only which was designated as "Judah" and "all Judah," and which finally became known as "Judea" and "Jewry," "all Judea" and "ALL JEWRY."

Indeed, long before the division took place, Moses, while prophesying unto the seed of Jacob, cried out, "Hear, Lord, the voice of Judah, and bring him unto his people." This can mean nothing else, except that Judah was to be separated from his people, and finally, if that prayer is ever answered, was to be brought back to them.

But let us continue our array of texts in which both houses are mentioned, almost in the same breath. "And I saw when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah, feared not, but went and played the harlot also," Jer. 3:8.



Here Israel and Judah are not the same;

They are only sisters, both in shame.



"And the Lord said unto me, That backsliding Israel bath justified herself more than treacherous Judah," Jer. 3:11.



Here Israel, in idolatry the adulterous,

Is justified more than Judah, the treacherous:



although God had said, "Though thou, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah offend," Hosea 4:15. And he also said, "I will no more have mercy upon the house of Israel [that I should altogether pardon them – Margin]. But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah, and will save them by the Lord their God," Hosea 1:6, 7.

The name, "Jerusalem" is often used to designate the Jewish people because it was their chief city. When Jesus wept over the city and cried out 'Jerusalem, Je­rusalem . . . how oft would I have gathered you as a hen gathereth her brood under her wing, but ye would not!" he did not mean the streets and build­ings of the city, but the people; and not only the people dwelling within the walls, but the nation as well. For it was not only the Jewish capital -- but it was their metropolis, their commercial center, their citadel, their royal city, their sanctuary and in every way the representative city of their nation.

This being true, we may expect that the name of the capital city of the ten-tribed kingdom would be used as a representative name and applied to that nation. Also, since the name of Judah was given as a national name for the Jewish people, because of the fact that it was one of the royal sons from the tribe of Judah who led the revolt when she became a separate nation, and the fact that her kings were of Judah's line, thus making the tribe of Judah the representative tribe, so we might expect the same thing with reference to the ten-tribed kingdom. Jeroboam reigned over Israel in Shechem twenty-two years, and was succeeded by Nadab, his son, who reigned two years. After this, Baasha con­spired against him, killed him, and reigned in his stead; but he moved the capital to Tirzah, where he reigned for twenty-four years, and was followed by his son, Elah, who reigned in that city two years. Then he was conspired against by Zimri, who reigned only seven days, until he in turn was conspired against and died by burning the king's house down over his own head. Then Omri, who had conspired against Zimri and suc­ceeded him to the throne, bought a hill from Shemar, on which he built the city of Samaria, which became the permanent capital of the kingdom of Israel. Hence the name of the chief city of Israel, Samaria, is often used, when referring to Israel, in the same representa­tive way that Jerusalem is, in the case of the Jews.

For an example take the following: "Thy Calf, O Samaria, hath cast thee off; mine anger is kindled against them: how long will it be ere they attain to innocency? For from Israel was it also: the workman made it; therefore it is not God: but the Calf of Samaria shall be broken in pieces," Hosea 8:5, 6. Of course, the calf herein referred to is the calf worship instituted by Jeroboam, who caused Israel to sin, and since the calves were made by the workmen of Israel, they were not God. So we see that Samaria stands for Israel, whose capital it is, and whose own workmen had made the calf which they themselves worshiped.

But this nation has another name which stands for the whole, as well as that of Israel and Samaria. Look ye! "When I would have healed Israel, then the in­iquity of Ephraim was discovered, and the wickedness of Samaria: for they commit falsehood," Hosea 7:1.

Thus we see that the name of Ephraim is used as a representative name for the northern kingdom, just as the name of Judah is used for the southern kingdom, and that the names Israel, Ephraim and Samaria are used as names of the ten-tribed kingdom in contradis­tinction to those of the three-tribed kingdom, which are Judah, Jerusalem, and the Jews.

On the very day on which Moses died, while he was reiterating and enlarging upon the prophecies which Jacob had given at the time of his death, he made a prophecy concerning the pre-eminence of Ephraim in Joseph-Israel, as follows: "Let the blessing come upon the head of Joseph, and upon the top of the head of him that was separated from his brethren. His glory is like the firstling of his bullock, and his horns are like the horns of unicorns: with them he shall push the people together to the ends of the earth: and they are the ten thousands of Ephraim, and they are the thou­sands of Manasseh."

With the name of Ephraim standing at the head of one of the two nations of Jacob, and the name of Judah at the head of the other, we can easily understand such expressions as the following: "O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? For your goodness is as a morning cloud, and as the early dew it goeth away," Hosea 6:4.

Since both Judah, the fourth son of Jacob, and Eph­raim, the second son of Joseph, had been dead for nearly one thousand years prior to the writing of these Scriptures which we have just given, we must know that these are national names, used to represent the na­tional conditions of the two nations which are ad­dressed.

So, also, is the following: "Therefore will I be unto Ephraim as a moth, and to the house of Judah as rot­tenness. When Ephraim saw his sickness, and Judah saw his wound, then went Ephraim to the Assyrian, and sent to King Jared; yet he could not heal you of your wound. For I will be unto Ephraim as a lion, and as a young lion to the house of Judah: I, even I, will tear and go away, and none shall rescue them. I will go and return to my place, until they acknowledge their offence, and seek my face: in their affliction they will seek me early," Hosea 5:12-15.

Before proceeding further with the history of these two kingdoms, there is one other point which must be settled once for all. This is that the people of God whom he distinctively calls "Israel," the heads of which are the birthright holders, unto whom was given that national name -- it coming to them with the birthright at the time of the transfer of that inheritance -- are not Jews, that the Holy Spirit has never, either in Biblical history or prophecy, called them Jews, and that they have never been called Jews except by uninformed his­torians and by unscriptural teachers of the Word of God.

Understand us: we do not say that the Jews are not Israelites; they belong to the posterity of Jacob, who was called Israel; hence they are all Israelites. But the great bulk of Israelites are not the Jews, just as the great bulk of Americans are not Californians, and yet all Californians are Americans; also, as in writing the history of America we must of necessity write the his­tory of California, because California is a part of Amer­ica; but we could write a history of California without writing a history of America.

So, in writing the history of Israel we must needs write the history of the Jews, but we could write the history of the Jews and not write the history of Israel. Or, in other words, in writing the history of the many nations we must write the history of the Jews, for, to say the least, they are one of those many nations; but in writing the history of the Jews, it would he utterly impossible to write the history of the many nations which were promised to the birthright people, whose national name is, in a special sense, Israel, and whose people are not Jews. Nationally speaking, they are brother nations, but not always very brotherly. But if we can keep track of the birthright nation, and if they ever have that birthright promise fulfilled to them, then, and only then, can we write the history of the many nations which the Lord God of Israel promised unto their fathers Abraham, Isaac, Jacob-Israel, Joseph, and Ephraim and Manasseh.

It will help us much in our study of this question, to know just when and under what circumstances the word Jew is first used in the canon of Sacred Scrip­ture.

It was not until more than two hundred years after the revolt of the ten tribes from the house of David. It was at a time when Pekah, son of Remaliah, king of Israel, formed a federation with Rezin, king of Syria, and came up against Ahaz, king of Judah, to war for acquisition of territory. Notice how the prophet of God speaks of these three nations Israel, Syria and Judah. He declares: "And it came to pass in the days of Ahaz, the son of Jotham, the son of Uziah, king of Judah, that Rezin, the king of Syria, and Pekah, the son of Remaliah, king of Israel, went up toward Jeru­salem to war against it [Jerusalem was the throne seat of Judah] but could not prevail against it. And it was told the house of David, saying, Syria is confederate with Ephraim," Isa. 7:1, 2. The prophet further explains, that "The head of Syria is Damascus, [Da­mascus was the capital of Syria] and the head of Damascus is Rezin [King of Syria]; and within three­score-and-five [65] years shall Ephraim be broken that it be not a people. (Margin: from being a people). And the head of Ephraim is Samaria, and the head of Samaria is Remaliah's son," Isa. 7:8, 9. Remaliah's son was Pekah, king of Israel.

What Isaiah had to say concerning this war was for the purpose of making prophecies concerning the outcome. We must pass over the prophecies for the pres­ent, as our object now is to show the difference between the Jew and Israel and we have simply quoted sufficient for our purpose.

We now turn to the historic record of that war, and read: "In the seventeenth year [as king] of Pekah, the son of Remaliah, Ahaz, the son of Jotham, king of Judah, began to reign, and reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem . . . Then Rezin, king of Syria, and Pekah, son of Remaliah, king of Israel, came up to Je­rusalem to war; and they besieged Ahaz (king of Judah), but could not overcome him. At that time Rezin, king of Syria, recovered Elath to Syria, and drave the Jews from Elath; and the Syrians dwell there unto this day. So Ahaz sent messengers to Tiglath­pileser, king of Assyria, saying, I am thy servant and thy son; come up and save me out of the hand of the king of Syria, and out of the hand of the king of Israel, which rise up against me," 2 Kings 16: 1, 2, 5-7.

Here we have it clearly stated that in this war the besieging party is, "Pekah, the king of Israel," who is the "head of Samaria," which is the head of "Eph­raim," together with another nation with whom they are confederate. And if we put it as Isaiah does con­cerning the other house, the besieged party was "Ahaz, king of Judah," head of "the Jews," whose head is "Jerusalem," the head of the house of David.

Do you see the point? The king of Judah, or the king of the Jews, was besieged in his capital, and wanted to form an alliance with the king of Assyria and, to secure him as an ally, even fawned upon the king of Assyria, saying "I am thy servant, thy son," and crying "Come up!" What for? To save the JEWS from the hand of ISRAEL.

Thus we see that the first time the word Jews is used in the history of the Abrahamic race is at a time when the Jews and Israel were at war with each other. Hence we ask, If the Jews were the besieged and Israel was with the besiegers, how can it be possible that the Jews and Israel are one and the same people?

According to the conclusion of the great number of our learned men, also some "higher (?) critics," we must needs conclude that the Jews were fighting their own shadow, which would be reducing the whole mat­ter to an argumentation ad absurdum.

It is high time for the Christian world, yea, and all secular historians, too, "to awake out of sleep," take the advice of the learned Apostle Paul and "cease giving heed to Jewish fables" and quit telling the peo­ple that all Israelites are Jews. It is not true, never has been and never can be, for the difference between them is not only political and territorial but it is semi-racial. For, although the inheritors of the Sceptre and the Birthright were sons of the same father, they were not sons of the same mother, and thus they were only half brothers. This, together with the fact that Leah is described as "tender-eyed" and Rachel was said to be "fair," would make some strong facial and physi­cal distinctions in the posterity of the two families. But when we remember that Joseph married an Egyptian princess, thus blending the best Semitic blood with the royal blood of Egypt, and making the posterity of Joseph half-blood Egyptian, then we must know that while the children of Joseph are half Israelitish they are still three-fourths removed from the children of Judah. This one would make great changes in their physique and largely eradicate all facial resemblances.

The fact that Ephraim and Manasseh, the sons of Joseph, who were the final inheritors of the Birthright, were half-blood Egyptians is that which made it neces­sary for Jacob to adopt them and make them fully his own, as Reuben and Simeon were his, before he could confer upon them the covenant Birthright. This is the adoption to which the Apostle Paul refers in his argument concerning the Children of the Promise ver­sus the Children of the Flesh, as follows: "Israelites, to whom pertaineth the adoption, and the covenants, and the glory, and the giving of the law, and the serv­ice, and the promises; whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came." Here Isra­elites as a whole, including both houses, are spoken of. Hence, to all who really believe, claim, or teach that the Jews ONLY are Israelites, and of all who believe that the word adoption, as used in this connection, can possibly have reference in any way to spiritual adop­tion we ask: When, how, or where did there ever occur an adoption, either spiritual or racial, among the Jews as a nation?

No answer required. Please reflect.

An eminent theological professor, who gives an exegesis of the Sunday-school lessons for the most prominent denominational papers in this country, began his exposition on "The Call of Abraham" as follows: "We come now to the third of the great landmarks of history, the call of Abraham. From being a universal history the record becomes national. Hereafter, we have to do with one people, the Jews. In the founder of the Jewish nation we find not a conqueror or a lawgiver but a saint." Yet it is fact that the term "Jews" is not used in writing the history of the Abrahamic people until twelve hundred years after the call of Abraham.

Another theological professor, of one of our largest training schools, defines "The Jews" as "A name given to all the descendants of Abraham." Ah!!! We ask -- When?

Still another defines "The Jews": "A name given to the descendants of Abraham, who were divided into twelve tribes"; and yet it is a fact that in the Scriptures the name "Jews" was given only to those who dwelt in Jewry, which country was occupied by the tribes of Judah, Benjamin and Levi, and did not include Samaria, the home of the ten-tribed kingdom.

No; it is a fiction which has been foisted upon us by modern scholars, many of whom are presidents and professors of universities, colleges and theological seminaries, editors of religious and secular newspapers, doctors of divinity and church dignitaries, that the words "Jew" and "Jews" are equivalent to "Israel," "Israelites," "Israelitish," "Hebrew" and "Hebraic."

By not distinguishing Israel from Judah we have in the Bible a historical and prophetic chain which can never be linked together, and which sets all of the writers at variance with one another; for we cause Isaiah to question statements made by Jeremiah; set Joel, Amos, and Zephaniah against Zechariah; cause Jeremiah to convict Hosea of being a false prophet; then make Ezekiel step in and contradict them both and many others in such a manner that one prophet is made to give the lie to the other.

We feel sorry for the so-called "Higher Critics," for they really do find trouble, but they cannot conceive that this trouble could, by any possible chance, arise because of their misconception of the subject matter; hence it must be in the style [stylus -- a pen] or man­ner of the prophet. Thus if any of the prophets chance to reveal a mannerism at one time which is not so plainly manifest at another, then the exclamations, “Ah! Eureka! We've found it! There are two of them!" are heard to vibrate and revibrate throughout the ec­clesiastical world.

Is it any wonder that skepticism is rampant, both iti the church and out of it, since the common error of Christendom is to regard the Jews as the whole house of Israel? Is it any wonder that Tom Paine lost his soul while following the beaten path of this fallacy? For he did give the Bible up as a myth, and boldly states in his writings that he was led into infidelity because he saw that the Jews did not and never could verify the promises concerning Israel.

For it is true that God had declared, through Micah, of Israel, who was divorced and cast far off, that he would (at the proper time) make her a strong nation; while Judah was to become a remnant. Isaiah, Hosea, Jeremiah and the New Testament declare Israel to be lost; while both Jeremiah and Ezekiel affirm that Judah is well known. Hosea declares Israel to be as "the sands for multitude"; while Jeremiah insists that Judah is "few in number" and a remnant. Isaiah, David, Micah, Jeremiah and others declare that Israel is the strongest war power on earth, never to be con­quered by a Gentile power; and yet Jeremiah declares that Judah is "without might;" while Daniel bemoans and records the fact that the Jews will be conquered by a Gentile power. The entire line of prophets from Moses down declare Israel to be a continuous mon­archy, whose sceptre is held by the seed of David; while Judah is to be "without government" of their own, but are to be ruled over. Hosea declares that "Israel shall ride" but "Judah shall plow."

Moses also declares that there shall come a time in the history of Israel (the ten tribes) when they also shall "be few in number," and yet it is prophesied con­cerning them that they shall obtain possession of "great possessions," inheriting and establishing (peopling) the desolate places of the earth, rule many heathen nations, have a great revenue, become the "mart of nations," hold the keys of commerce, be "exalted above their neighbors," and become "the chief of nations." But, on the other hand, Judah is to be "without geographical inheritance," "strangers in all countries," "howl for vexation of spirit," "leave their name for a curse," "be ashamed," and "cry for sorrow of heart" until the great day of Jezreel.

pokerkid
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THE BROKEN BROTHERHOOD THE BROKEN BROTHERHOOD

Post#5 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:53 am

THE BROKEN BROTHERHOOD THE BROKEN BROTHERHOOD
Sha Sha
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In the last chapter we gave much testimony from the Scripture showing that the ten-tribed kingdom is dealt with, both in history and prophecy -- much of which is yet unfulfilled -- as the house of Israel, and other titles, some of which you will find quite prominent in this chapter; while the three-tribed kingdom, which is composed of the Jewish people, is dealt with as the house of Judah and the Jews. If any of our readers are not yet satisfied on this point we promise that they shall still have abundant opportunity to become thoroughly convinced. Prof. C. A. L. Totten, of Yale University, says: "I can never be too thankful to the Almighty that in my youth he used the late Professor Wilson to show me the difference between the two houses. The very understanding of this difference is the KEY by which almost the entire Bible becomes intelligible, and I cannot state too strongly that the man who has not yet seen that Israel of the Scripture is totally distinct from the Jewish people, is yet in the very infancy, the mere alphabet, of Biblical study, and that to this day the meaning of seven-eighths of the Bible is shut to his understanding." This will become more and more apparent as we proceed with a few brief out­lines of the histories of these two kingdoms.

Israel displeased the Lord by her idolatry, but it is quite evident that, for some time after the division, Judah pleased him by her faithfulness; and it is also evident that, for a short period, fraternal relations existed between the two kingdoms. These evidences are found in the history of the war which occurred be­tween Israel and Moab in the days of Jehoram, the son of Ahab, king of Israel, and of Jehoshaphat, king of Judah.

During the reign of Ahab he had conquered Moab, and the king of Moab paid him a revenue of one hun­dred thousand lambs and one hundred thousand rams, with the wool. But upon the ascension of Ahab's son to the throne of Israel the king of Moab rebelled against him; and so it is recorded that "King Jehoram went out of Samaria at that same time, and num­bered all Israel," 2 Kings 3:6.

Here the expression "all Israel" has reference to all the region of country which was occupied by the ten tribes of which the kingdom of Israel was composed. Samaria was their capital city and the dwelling place of the king; but when the king of Moab rebelled against him it was but natural, and also good general­ship, that he should want to know the fighting strength of the kingdom. So he made a tour throughout the realm that he might know just how many fighting men he had. But it seems that he returned fully satisfied that he did not have an army of sufficient strength to insure victory, for he sent a message to the king of Judah, saying:

"The king of Moab hath rebelled against me. Wilt thou go with me against Moab to battle?" To this the king of Judah replied in the affirmative, saying: "I will go up: I am as thou art, and my people as thy people."

As a matter of course he could say, "My people are as thy people," for the people were brethren and sub­jects of brother nations, all being seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the Children of the Promise. These two kings further decided, while holding a council of war, to go up by the way of the wilderness of Edom, and to ask the king of Edom to join with them against the Moabites. For the Edomites were also kinfolks of these two nations, they being the descend­ants of Esau, the brother of Jacob, whose name was changed to Edom after he sold his birthright.

The king of Edom consented to go with them, and thus the Children of the Flesh and the Children of the Promise made common cause, and went up together against the king of Moab. But when they had made a seven-days' journey they got into trouble, for there was no water for that great army of men and the beasts of burden which they were compelled to have with them.

At the beginning of the chapter which contains the history of this war concerning the king of Israel, we have the following: "Now Jehoram, the son of Ahab, began to reign over Israel in Samaria in the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat, king of Judah, and he reigned twelve years. And wrought evil in the sight of the Lord, but not like his father and his mother; for he put away the image of Baal that his father had made. Nevertheless he cleaved unto the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, which made Israel to sin; he departed not therefrom."

But as soon as they were in trouble and the idol­atrous king of Israel found there was no water, then in startled fear he cried out, saying: "The Lord hath brought us three kings out here to destroy us."

Now quickly, when tortured with guilty fear, the idolater knew there was a LORD who had power to destroy them, or at least to destroy him, for he knew that he deserved it, and only said "us three" because of a spirit of guilty cowardice which hoped to shift the responsibility, or, if failing in that, to insist that others were fully as much to blame as he-which is so often seen in frightened but impenitent men. But it was not so with Jehoshaphat, the God-fearing king of Judah, for he at once asked: "Is there not here a prophet of the Lord that we may inquire of the Lord by him?"

No doubt, the thought of Jehoshaphat in asking this question was that by making inquiry of the Lord they would receive such Divine instruction as would en­able them to escape the threatened danger; for when one of the servants of the king of Israel, upon hear­ing this inquiry, stepped forward and informed them that Elisha the prophet was with the company the king of Judah rejoiced and said: "The word of the Lord is with him."

When Elisha was found and these three kings were ushered into his presence he addressed himself to the king of Israel, saying: "What have I to do with thee? Get thee to the prophets of thy father and to the prophets of thy mother." But to this the king, still fearful, vouchsafed only the reply, "Nay: for the Lord hath called these three kings together, to deliver them into the hand of Moab.

Then Elisha said: "As the Lord of Hosts liveth, before whom I stand, surely, were it not that I regard the presence of Jehoshaphat, the king of Judah, I would not look toward thee, nor see thee."

There are reasons given, and they are weighty ones, why the prophet of God should regard the king of Judah and emphasize the fact of his presence, in con­trast to the king of Israel; for, through the prophet Hosea the Lord declares: "Ephraim compasseth me about with lies, and the house of Israel with deceit: but Judah yet ruleth with God, and is faithful with the saints."

Ah, yes; Judah is not only faithful among the saints, but she yet has power and ruling influence with God. Here are reasons, abundant, for that honorable distinction which was conferred upon Judah and her God-honoring king. It was because of them that the Lord sent water to that famishing army and gave them victory over the Moabites. But Israel and her king, although serving Jeroboam's calves, yet, in a time of trouble, when moved by guilty fear, admitted the power of the God of their fathers. Hence "lies and deceit" were in Ephraim-Israel, but faithfulness -- as yet -- among the Jewish people.

But there came a time when Judah was not among the faithful, and when she lost her power with God; and there also came a time when the fraternal rela­tions were broken between these brother nations. There are many instances of the severance of broth­erly harmony between these nations, but the following instance, which occurred in the days of Amaziah, king of Judah, and Joash, king of Israel, not only reveals the broken ties but justifies the term Ephraim-Israel.

"Moreover, Amaziah gathered Judah together and made them captains over thousands and over hundreds, according to the houses of their fathers through all Judah and Benjamin [the Levites were priests, not warriors], and he numbered them from twenty years old and above, and found them three hundred thousand choice men, able to go forth to war, that could handle spear and shield. He hired an hundred thousand mighty men of valour out of Israel, for a hundred talents of silver. But there came a man of God to him, saying, 'O king, let not the army of Israel go with thee, for the Lord is not with Israel, to wit, all the children of Ephraim. But if thou wilt go and do it, to be strong for the battle, God shall make thee fall before the enemy; for God hath power to help and to cast down.'

"And Amaziah said unto the man of God, But what shall we do with the hundred talents which I have given to the army of Israel? And the man of God an­swered, The Lord is able to give thee much more than this. Then Amaziah separated them, to wit, the army that was come to him out of Ephraim, to go home again: wherefore their anger was greatly kindled against Judah, and they returned home in great anger. And . . . the soldiers of the army which Amaziah sent back, that they should not go with him to battle, fell upon the cities of Judah, from Samaria even to Beth-boron, and smote three thousand of them, and took much spoil."

Thus we see that the terms Israel and Ephraim are used interchangeably, for at one time we read "the army out of Israel," and at another, but concerning the same transaction, "the army that is come out of Ephraim." Also the man of God told the king of the Jews that, if he went into battle with the hundred thousand men that he had hired out of Israel, the Lord would defeat him, for God was not with Israel, to wit, Ephraim. And further, when the king of Judah sent the soldiers back home he sent them from the nation which the sacred history calls "the Jews" to that which is called "Israel."

There is one other point which must not be over­looked at this juncture; that is, that Ephraim is the representative of the house of Joseph; that Joseph represents the Birthright blessing, which carries with it the promise of a multitude of children, which was originally given to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and that it sometimes occurs that the name of Joseph, the father, instead of Ephraim, the son, is used when recording facts of history or prophecy concerning the ten-tribed kingdom. This does not often occur, but the following is an instance:

"And I will strengthen the house of Judah, and I will save the house of Joseph, and I will bring them again to place them; for I have mercy upon them: and they shall be as though I had not cast them off: for I am the Lord their God, and will hear them. And Ephraim shall be like a mighty man, and their heart shall rejoice as through wine," Zech. 10:6, 8.

This text clearly shows that the names of Ephraim and Joseph are titles of the ten-tribed kingdom, in contradistinction from Judah and the Jews as titles of the three-tribed kingdom. And, since it is true that Judah and Joseph are the inheritors of the two special promises which pertain to the two covenants, we need not be surprised at this, but should rather expect that these two names would stand thus contrasted. But all the more should we expect this, when we see the fact so clearly revealed in the history of the posterity of these two men that the Birthright name and people are representatives of one nation, and that Judah's sceptre is swaying over the other.

But these facts are still more clearly brought out in one of Ezekiel's prophecies, as follows: "Moreover, thou son of man, take thee one stick and write upon it, for Judah, and for the children of Israel his com­panions: then take another stick, and write upon it for Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel, his companions. And join them one to another into one stick, and they shall become one in thine hand. And when the children of thy people shall speak unto thee, saying, Wilt thou not shew us what thou meanest by these? say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God: Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah and make them one in my hand. And the sticks wherein thou writest shall be in thy hand before their eyes. And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God: Behold I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side and bring them into their own land. And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all, and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they he divided into two kingdoms any more at all. Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions: but I will save them out of all their dwelling-places, wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God," Ezekiel, 37:15-23.

Many things will need to be explained before we can show the relative place in the history of these peo­ple of all the facts herein mentioned. But this much is clear:

(1) That there are two sticks, two nations, or kingdoms.

(2) That Judah, who inherited the sceptre and crown, has one of those sticks, kingdoms, or nations; while Joseph-Ephraim has the other.

(3) That Judah has with him as companions some of "the children of Israel," and that Ephraim has some of "the tribes of Israel," who are his fellows; and his companions.

(4) That when this prophecy was written they were divided; and that all the people belonging to the race had gathered, either to Judah or Joseph, or in other words, either to the Sceptre or to the Birthright.

(5) That at some future time they are again to be united, become one kingdom, and then remain so for­ever.

(6) That when they are thus united, one king shall be king over them all, and when this takes place the people will have been so lifted up by Divine power and so enriched by grace that they will no more defile them­selves, commit no transgressions, or in any way dis­please the Lord, but shall be his accepted people, and he shall be their God.

Evidently one of these sticks is the Sceptre and the other the Birthright; for these and the promises con­nected with each are of general interest to all the children of promise, but they are the exclusive prop­erty of the two men, Judah and Joseph, who are the special subjects of the prophecy, while the entire posterity of Jacob is the general subject. But this figure of the two sticks, or staffs, is used in another proph­ecy, which pertains to the two houses and which should be of profound interest to all.

Beginning in the midst of the seventh verse of the eleventh chapter of Zachariah, we have the following: "I took unto me two staves; the one I called Beauty, and the other I called Bands . . . And I took my staff, even Beauty, and cut it asunder, that I might break my covenant which I had made with all the people. And it was broken in that day: and so the poor of the flock that waited upon me knew that it was the Word of the Lord. And I said unto them, If ye think good, give me my price; and if not, for­bear. So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver.

"And the Lord said unto me, Cast it to the potter: a goodly price that I was priced at of them. And I took thirty pieces of silver and cast them to the potter in the house of the Lord. Then I cut asunder mine other staff, even Bands, that I might break the brotherhood between Israel and Judah," Zech. 11:7-14.

So Israel and Judah are the two sticks or staves which the Lord took unto himself. He first cut asunder one stick or staff called Beauty, i.e., ten-tribed Israel. Then, after a certain transaction in which their Lord was sold for thirty pieces of silver, he cut asunder his other staff, called Bands (i.e., Judah, the Jews), that he might break the brotherhood between Judah and Israel!

Just what a great and marvelously fulfilled truth is herein declared we are not yet prepared to explain. At this juncture we can only call your attention to the fact that Ezekiel's prophecy concerning the putting together of the two sticks could not have been fulfilled until after the transaction which concerns the thirty pieces of silver; and that when it does take place it must be in harmony not only with those blessed results, which we have already mentioned, but also with that which is contained in the rest of that prophecy, a part of which is as follows:

"And they shall dwell in the land that I have given to Jacob my servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, even they, and their chil­dren, and their children's children forever: and my servant David shall be their prince forever.

"Moreover, I will make a covenant of peace with them; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them: and I will place them and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore."

The brotherhood is still broken, but it shall be mended.

pokerkid
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EPHRAIM-SAMARIA-ISRAEL'S IDOLATRY

Post#6 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:54 am

EPHRAIM-SAMARIA-ISRAEL'S IDOLATRY
Sha Sha
Posted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 1:35 am Reply with quote Edit/Delete this post Delete this post View IP address of poster
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"When I would have healed Israel, then the in­iquity of Ephraim was discovered, and the wickedness of Samaria, for they commit falsehood," (Hosea 7:1). Here the names of Israel, Ephraim, and Samaria, are used interchangeably for the one kingdom. It bears the name Ephraim, because it is the Birthright king­dom; that of Samaria, because that was the name of their capital city; and the name of Israel, for the reason that when dying Jacob, whose name had been changed to Israel, in bestowing the Birthright upon Joseph's two sons, said: "Let my name be named on them."

When the blessing of Him that dwelt in the bush came upon Joseph, he who was separated from his brethren, it is declared that his glory was the ten thousands of Ephraim and the thousands of Manas­seh. Thus he received, in so far as tribal honor or glory is concerned, a double portion. So, at the time of the division of the land by lot, under the leadership of Joshua, we find the declaration that "there was also a lot for the tribe of Manasseh, for he was the first horn of Joseph; but that "they gave no part unto the Levites in the land, save cities to dwell in," and the reason given for it is, "For the children of Joseph were two tribes, Manasseh and Ephraim," Josh. 14:4.

The fact is that Jacob adopted the two sons of Joseph gave them tribal headship, and thus made thirteen tribes in Jacob. And since Judah, Benjamin, and Levi were the tribal heads of the kingdom of Judah, there were still ten tribes for the Birthright kingdom, and the Lord's promise to the king of Israel stood fast.

The history of the kingdom of Israel, as opposed to that of the Jews, is full of the sin of Jeroboam and of her kings who walked in this sin. This sin was, in a special sense, the sin of that nation. It pertained exclusively to them, because it was born, bred, lived, and died among them; for no other nation took up with it, not even their brethren of the kingdom of Judah. It was the standing sin of the nation; to them it ever stood as an open door through which other forms of idolatry might enter, and through which they did enter. For, although it is said of Omri, the sixth king of Israel, that he wrought evil in the sight of the Lord in following the sin of Jeroboam, and also that he did worse than all that were before him, the Lord is compelled to say of Ahab, the son of Omri, that he did worse than his father; for it was he who in­troduced the worship of Baal among the Israelites. Following the introduction of Baalism, other idolatries were quickly introduced among them, and soon the cup of Israel's iniquity was full to the brim; the result of which was that she was cast out of the land.

Israel was not only cast out of that land, their God-given heritage and which -- if God be true -- must yet become their everlasting home; but she was cast off by the Lord and divorced from him, because of her harlotry in forsaking him, her lawful husband, for the worship of idols.

Before giving the details of the casting out and the casting off, we deem it advisable to give a complete list of Israel's dynasties, together with a list of all the kings who reigned over Israel from the time when the kingdom was taken from Solomon and given to Jeroboam, his servant, until they were finally driven out of the land, and also to give what the Scripture saith concerning the idolatry of each of these her kings.

So we place below, the name and number of the king, the number of the dynasty, and the length of time which each of the kings reigned, and what is said concerning his idolatry.

I. DYNASTY.

1st King, Jero­boam. Reigned 22 years. "And Jeroboam said in his heart, Now shall the kingdom return to the house of David: if this people go up to do sacrifice in the house of the Lord at Jerusalem, then shall the heart of this people turn again unto their lord, even unto Rehoboam, king of Judah, and they shall kill me, and go again to Rehoboam, king of Judah, whereupon the king took counsel, and made two calves of gold, and said unto them, It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem: behold thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. And he set the one in Beth­el, and the other he put in Dan. And this thing became a sin, for the peo­ple went to worship," (I Ki. 12:26-30).

2nd King, Nadab. Reigned 2 years. "And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, and walked in the way of his father, and in his sin wherewith he made Israel to sin," (I Ki. 15:26).

II. DYNASTY.

3rd King, Baasha. Reigned 24 years. "And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, and walked in the way of Jero­boam, and in his sin wherewith he made Israel to sin," (I Ki. 15:34).

4th King, Elah. Reigned 2 years. "For all the sins of Baasha (Jero­boamism), and the sins of Elah his son, by which they sinned, and by which they made Israel to sin, etc.," (I Ki. 16:13).

III. DYNASTY.

5th King, Zimri. Reigned 1 week. "And it came to pass, when Zimri saw that the city was taken, that he went into the palace of the king's house, and burnt the king's house over him with fire, and died, for his sins which he sinned in doing evil in the sight of the Lord, in walking in the way of Jeroboam, and in his sin which he did to make Israel to sin," (I Ki. 16:18, 19).

IV. DYNASTY.

6th King, Omri. Reigned 12 years. "But Omri wrought evil in the eyes of the Lord, and did worse than all that were before him. For he walked in all the way of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, and in his sin wherewith he made Israel to sin, to provoke the Lord God of Israel to anger with their vanities," (I Ki. 16:25-26).

7th King, Ahab. Reigned 22 years. "And Ahab, the son of Omri, did evil in the sight of the Lord above all that were before him. And it came to pass, as if it had been a light thing for him to walk in the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, that he took to wife Jezebel, the daughter of Ethbaal, king of the Zi­donians, and went and served Baal, and worshiped him. And he reared up an altar for Baal in the house of Baal, which he had built in Samaria. And Ahab made a grove; and Ahab did more to provoke the Lord God of Israel than all the kings of Is­rael that were before him," (I Ki. 11:30-33).

8th King, Ahaziah Reigned 2 years. "And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, and walked in the way of his father, and in the way of his mother, and in the way of Jerohoam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin: for he served Baal, and wor­shiped him, and provoked to anger the Lord God of Israel, according to all that his father had done," (I Ki. 22:52, 53).

9th King, Jehoram. Reigned 12 years. "And he wrought evil in the sight of the Lord; but not like his father, and like his mother; for he put away the image of Baal that his father had made. Nevertheless he cleaved unto the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, which made Israel to sin; he departed not therefrom," (2 Ki. 3:2, 3).

V. DYNASTY.

10th King, Jehu, Reigned 23 years. "Howbeit from the sins of Jero­boam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin, Jehu departed not from after them, to wit, the golden calves that were in Bethel and that were in Dan," (2 Ki. 10:29).

11th King, Jehoahaz, reigned 17 years. "And he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord, and fol­lowed the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, which made Israel to sin; he departed not therefrom," (2 Ki. 13:2).

12th King, Joash. Reigned 10 years. "And he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord; he departed not from all the sins of Jerohoam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin; but he walked therein," (2 Ki. 13:11).

13th King, Jeroboam, the 2d. (son of Joash). Reigned 41 years. "And he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord: he depart­ed not from all the sins of Jerohoam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin," (2 Ki. 14:24).

14th King, Zachariah. Reigned 6 months. "And he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord, as his father had done: he departed not from the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin," (2 Ki. 15:9).

VI. DYNASTY.

15th King, Shallum. Reigned 1 month. (Sins of Shallum not recorded.)

VII. DYNASTY.

16th King Menahem. Reigned 10 years. "And he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord: he departed not all of his days from the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin," (2 Ki. 15:18).

17th King Pekahiah. ­Reigned 2 years. "And he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord: and he departed not from the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin," (2 Ki. 15:24).

VII. DYNASTY.

18th King, Pekah. Reigned 20 years. "And he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord: he departed not from the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin,” (2 Ki. 15:28).

19th King, Hoshea, Reigned 22 years. "And he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord, but not as the kings of Israel that were before him," (2 Ki. 17:2).

After the introduction of Baalism and other idolatries, there were a few feeble attempts at reformation: but they were only a partial, as we may readily see. Take, for instance, the case of Jehoram to which we referred in the last chapter; how it is written that "He wrought evil in the sight of the Lord, but not like his father and mother, for he put away the image of Baal that his father had made, nevertheless he cleaved unto the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, which made Israel to sin." It was this slight and hypocritical attempt to purify the worship of the people which so displeased the Lord, and which made Elisha the prophet give that scathing rebuke to Jehoram in the presence of his kinsman kings. For if he knew enough concerning the Lord God of his race to have his conscience troubled over Baal, he had sufficient light to have made a clean sweep of the whole thing, but he did not do it. And the sequel proves that he did not succeed in destroying Baalism from among his people, for they were soon back to it, and even went so far as to offer their own sons and daughters in living sacrifice to the idol of Baal.

It was to this kingdom, the people of which are Israelites and not Jews, that the Lord sent Elijah the prophet to make the fire test as to whether he or Baal be God. And when the Lord answered by fire, which not only consumed the sacrifice but the stones of the altar, the water in the ditch, and the very dust under the altar, it was these people who shouted loud and long: "The Lord, he is God! The Lord, he is God!" But they never forsook Jeroboam-ism, and soon relapsed into the worship of Baal worse than ever.

Finally the Lord raised up Jehu, who destroyed all the house of Ahab, and became the king of Israel. He, upon his ascension, "gathered the people together and said unto them, Ahab served Baal a little; Jehu shall serve him much. Now therefore call unto me all the prophets of Baal, all his priests; let none be wanting; for I have a great sacrifice to do for Baal; whosoever shall be wanting [lacking] he shall not live. But Jehu did it in subtlety, to the intent that he might destroy the worshipers of Baal," (2 Ki. 10:19).

His ruse worked like a charm; they all came, proph­ets, priests and all the worshipers, "so that there was not a man left that came not," and the house of Baal was full from one end to the other. Then he com­manded his guards to destroy them, saying that the man who let one escape should pay the penalty with his own life. They did their work and did it well. So the record reads, "Thus Jehu did destroy Baal out of Israel." But, oh, note the very next words: "How­beit, from the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin, Jehu departed not from them, to wit, the golden calves that were in Bethel and that were in Dan," (2 Kings 10:29).

It was in regard to Israel, this same ten-tribed kingdom, that the Lord, through the prophet Hosea, said, "Israel slideth back as a backsliding heifer," and of whom he said, "I will heal their backslidings, I will love them freely"; and whom he exhorted, saying: "O Israel, return unto the Lord thy God!" But they would not. And yet at that same time the Lord declared that the Jews did have power with him, and that they were among the faithful saints.

In the face of all these facts can there be any further question as to the real meaning of the expression, "Ephraim is joined to his idols" -- Jeroboam's calves? Or need we be surprised, in the fact of these cold, hard facts, that the Lord should say, "Let him alone?"

No, surely no. The only surprise is that we should have been so stupid as to have tried to spiritualize Ephraim and his idols.

Since it is a well-known fact that the Jews also went into the worship of Baal, and that for this they were eventually carried away to Babylon, we deem it advisable that all may the more readily grasp other facts with which we shall yet deal, to give at this juncture a tabulated list of Judah's kings from the time God broke up the united kingdom -- for you will remember that he said, "This is of me" -- until the Jewish people went into the Babylonish captivity.

KINGDOM OF JUDAH

(Dynasty a continuation of David's house.)

Number King Years Reigned

1 Rehoboam 17

2 Abijah 3

3 Asa 41

4 Jehosaphat 25

5 Jehoram 8

6 Ahaziah 1

7 (Queen) Athaliah 6

8 Jehoash 40

9 Amaziah 29

10 Azariah (Uzziah) 52

11 Jotham 16

12 Ahaz 16

13 Hezekiah 29

14 Manassah 55

15 Amon 2

16 Josiah 31

17 Jehoahaz 3 mos.

18 Jehoiakim 11

19 Jehoiachin 3 mos.

20 Zedekiah 11



In this list we perceive that the same dynasty, which commenced when David was made king over the united tribes, continues throughout this entire list down to and including Zedekiah; while, in the pre­viously given list of Israel's kings, you notice, there are no less than eight dynasties. The reason is ob­vious. Judah's kings are the God-given royal line, along which the swaying sceptre passed from father to son. For the Lord had promised this family that neither the sceptre nor a law-giver should depart from them until Shiloh should come. But such was not the case in the kingdom of Israel, hence feudalism prevailed among them.

pokerkid
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SAMARIA-ISRAEL CAST OUT AND CAST OFF

Post#7 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:55 am

SAMARIA-ISRAEL CAST OUT AND CAST OFF
Sha Sha
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Concerning the casting out of Israel, it is written: "And it came to pass in the fourth year of King Heze­kiah [the king of Judah] which was the seventh year of Hosea, son of Elah, king of Israel, that Shalmane­ser, king of Assyria, came up against Samaria and besieged it, and at the end of three years they took it; even in the sixth year of Hezekiah, that is, the ninth year of Hosea, king of Israel, Samaria was taken. And the king of Assyria did carry away Israel unto Assyria, and put them in Halah, and in Habor by the river of Gozan and in the cities of the Medes. Because they obeyed not the voice of the Lord their God, but transgressed his covenant, and all that Moses, the servant of the Lord, commanded, and would not hear them, nor do them," (2 Kings, 18:9-12). "For the children of Israel walked in all the sins of Jeroboam which he did, they departed not from them; until the Lord removed Israel out of his sight [liter­ally his fore-front regard, or fore-front favor; such as is expressed in other places by the use of the words face and countenance], as he had said by all his ser­vants the prophets. So was Israel carried away out of their own land to Assyria unto this day. And the king of Assyria brought men from Babylon, and from Cuthah, and from Ava, and from Hamath, and from Sepharvaim, and placed them in the cities of Samaria instead of the children of Israel: and they possessed Samaria, and dwelt in the cities thereof," (II Kings 17:23-24).

If, as it is herein affirmed, the king of Assyria did take this ten-tribed kingdom out of their own land, which land is called Samaria, and then place another people there instead of the children of Israel, then Samaria is the lawful home of those pre-Samaritans, THE EGYPTO-ISRAELITES of the Ephraimitish or Birthright kingdom, while those mongrel post-Sa­maritans, who were gathered up from various places, were but strangers and foreigners in that portion of the Abrahamic land grant known as Samaria.

Following this record of the removal of Israel and the placing of these strangers in their former home, we have the following: "And so it was at the begin­ning of the dwelling there, that they feared not the Lord: therefore the Lord sent lions among them which slew some of them. Wherefore they spake to the king of Assyria, saying, The nations which thou hast removed and placed in the cities of Samaria, know not the manner of the God of the land: therefore he hath sent lions among them, and, behold, they slay them, because they know not the manner of the God of the land.

"Then the king of Assyria commanded, saying, Carry one of the priests whom ye brought from thence; and let him go and dwell there, and let him teach them the manner of the God of the land. Then one of the priests whom they carried away from Samaria came and dwelt in Bethel, and taught them how they should fear the Lord.

"Howbeit every nation made gods of their own, and put them in the houses of the high places which the [former] Samaritans [Israelites] had made, every nation in their cities wherein they dwelt; the men of Babylon made Succoth-benoth [an idol], and the men of Cuth made Nergalm [another idol], and the men of Hamath made Ashima ]still another]. And the Avites made Nibhaz and Tartak [still others], and the Sepharvites burnt their children in fire to Adramme­lech and Anammelech, the gods of Sepharviam.

"So they feared the Lord and made unto themselves of the lowest of them priests of the high places, which sacrificed for them in the houses of the high places. They feared the Lord, and served their own gods, after the manner of nations [Joseph-Eph­raim-Samaria-Israel] whom they carried away from thence. Unto this day they do after the former man­ners," (2 Kings 17:25-34).

Yes: "after the former manner" of idolatrous Israel. Yes; after the former manner of Israel, who feared -- was afraid of -- the Lord, but served their own idol-gods. Yes; after the former manner of Israel, who built those same high places -- the groves, tem­ples and altars -- and in them worshiped the works of their own hands. Yes; after the former manner of Israel, who rejected the priests of the Lord, and made priests of the lowest of the people. Yes; here is a perfect flower, produced from the pollen of example, and grown upon the plant of "after the former man­ner." Yes; here is a clear case of gathering thistles when they should have had figs. And yet that poor priest whom they sent back was not to blame, for he himself was one of the lowest of his race. The blame lay behind him -- Israel!

The charge against the people of Israel is, "Surely as a wife treacherously departeth from her husband, so have ye dealt treacherously with me, O house of Israel, saith the Lord," (Jer. 3:20). And the Lord cried out, "O Ephraim, thou hast committed whoredom. Israel is defiled," (Hosea 5:3). Hosea is also used of the Lord to declare "Ephraim is smitten . . . . My God shall cast them away, because they did not harken unto him." Thus the Lord declares, "I will love them no more," but in the bitterness of his disap­pointment, for this is the same Lord that wept over Jerusalem, he cried out, "O Ephraim, how shall I give thee up?"

No! No! That loving One did not want to cast them off; but they forsook him; they would not have him to reign over them; they would no longer ask counsel of him after the judgment of Urim and Thum­mim, for the faithful but rejected One declares, "My people ask counsel at their stock [cattle, calves], and their staff [support or stay] declareth unto them: for the spirit of whoredom hath caused them to err, and they have gone a whoring from under their God," (Hosea 4:12).

Still he cries after them, "Return, O backsliding Is­rael, return! Return unto me and I will return unto you, for I am married unto you. I will heal your backslidings and love you freely." But they would not. Previous to this the Lord had said that he was a hus­band to Israel; but now, disappointed, he turns his heart more to the other kingdom -- that of Judah -- and says: "Though thou, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah offend," (Hosea 4:15). But as the story un­folds we find that Judah offended worse than Israel, and that one hundred and thirty years after the driv­ing out of Israel they, too, were carried into cap­tivity -- the captivity in Babylon.

Since "the head of Ephraim is Samaria," (Isa. 7:9) there need be no difficulty in understanding why the Lord should declare that "the inhabitants of Samaria shall fear because of the calves of Beth-aven," (Hosea 10:5). Beth-aven is defined as "House of Vanities"; "vain emptiness." When Jeroboam set up the two calves for Israel to worship he set one in Bethel, which means "God's house;" and by worship­ing those idols they turned the house of God into a house of vanity, or of vain, hollow, unsatisfactory emptiness. "Thus provoking the Lord God of Israel to anger [passionate suffering] by their vanities." Hence the wail of the prophet, "They trust in vanity and speak lies."

Let us note carefully, and we will get still clearer light concerning the calf question. "Israel hath cast off the thing that is good [God and his care]: the enemy shall pursue him [because they had cast off the protection of God]. They have set up kings, but not by me [their own, not the Lord's, choice]: they have made princes [feudal princes, not of royal line], and I knew [Heb, yada, appoint, recognize] it not: of their silver and their gold have they made them [selves] idols [calves, etc.] that [as a result] they may be cut off.

"Thy calf [the cause], O Samaria, hath cast thee off [the result]: mine anger [long-suffering passion] is kindled against them: how long will it be ere they [Israel] attain to innocency? [i.e., lack of guilt through the power of the calf to forgive, or take that guilt away.]

"For from Israel was it also: The workmen made it, therefore it is not God. But the calf of Samaria shall be broken in pieces.

"For they have sown the wind, and they shall reap the whirlwind: it hath left no standing corn [R. V.] the bud shall yield no meal: if so be it yield, the strangers [Post-Samaritans] shall swallow it up.

"Israel is swallowed up; now shall they be among the Gentiles as a vessel wherein is no pleasure. For they are gone up to Assyria a wild ass alone [without God] by himself: Ephraim hath hired lovers [Mar­ginal reading: loves, i.e., having no loving care from the Lord, they hire some one to love them]. Yea, though they have hired [lovers] among the nations, now will I gather them, and they shall begin to sorrow in a little while [marginal reading]for the burden of the king of princes.

"Because Ephraim hath made many altars to sin, altars shall be to him a sin. I have written to him the great things of my laws, but they were counted as a strange thing. They sacrifice [other] flesh for the sacrifices of mine offerings, and eat it; but the Lord accepteth them not: now will he remember their in­iquity, and visit their sins; they shall return to Egypt. [Figurative to them of captivity and bondage]. For Israel hath forgotten his maker."

Isaiah fully explains the expression, "They shall begin to sorrow in a little while, for the burden of the King of Princes," in the following: "O Assyrian, the rod of mine anger, and the staff in their hand is mine indignation. I will send him against a hypocritical nation and against the people of my wrath will I give him a charge, to take the spoil and to take the prey and to tread them down like the mire of the streets. Howbeit he meaneth not so; but it is in his heart to destroy and cut off nations not a few. For he saith, Are not my princes altogether kings?" (Isa. 10:5-8).

This last expression was an Assyrian boast. The Assyrian king really expected to destroy Israel and cut them off, but the Word of God has gone forth that they shall never be destroyed. In order to punish them he allowed the Assyrian to "tread them down like mire of the streets." And further on he refers to the Egyptian bondage, and says that the Assyrian shall smite them with a rod and lift up his staff against them, "after the manner of Egypt."

It is high time for us, who live in the realm of faith, to throw off our lethargy, arouse ourselves from our God-dishonoring stupidity and ignorance and under­stand that the name Samaria has a prophetic signif­icance, as well as a historic one. Yes, and that not only Samaria, but that the names of Ephraim, Joseph, Rachel, Judah, Jacob, Israel and many others have the same signification in the prophecies of the Bible that they have in its historic portions. That is, if the names Israel, Samaria, Ephraim, etc., are used in the history to designate the ten-tribed Egypto-Israelitish Birthright kingdom; then, when those names are used prophetically, surely the prophecy involved must refer to the same people. This is also true of the terms Judah and the Jews. True, the name Israel often in­cludes the Jews, for, racially speaking, it is their na­tional name; but it is used again and again and again when it has no reference whatever to the Jewish people.

In the thirty-first chapter of Jeremiah the Lord has made an unconditional promise to the Birthright na­tion. This promise is given in clear, definite and un­mistakable language, which he declares they shall con­sider in the last days; and in which he uses the names of Jacob, Ephraim, Israel, and Samaria, together with the name of Rachel, the mother of the birthright fam­ily. It is in this prophecy that the Lord makes use of the expression, "I am a father to Israel, and Eph­raim is my first born," in connection with which he says, "He that scattered Israel will gather him," and commands that this be told in the land where Eph­raim is living in the last days. He also says to them, in this same promise, "Thou shalt yet plant vines upon the mountains of Samaria," and to this he further adds: "A great company shall return thither."

"Return thither."

"Where?"

To the place from which they came -- SAMARIA!

"Who?"

Jacob-Rachel-Joseph-Ephraim-Samaria-Israel!!!

It is a well-known fact that the Jews went into the Babylonish captivity; but it is much more fully known that they returned from that captivity and dwelt, for a short season, in Judea, or Jewry. But, aside from that one priest who was brought back from among the captives of Israel, and who dwelt in Bethel, that he might teach those mongrel post-Samaritans the manner of the God of the land, there is not one word of history, sacred or profane, to show that any tribe, tribes, or remnants of tribes, of those pre-Samaritans, the children of Israel, who composed the northern kingdom, have ever returned to and dwelt in their former home. That is, that portion of the land which the Lord God of heaven and earth promised to their fathers, and which is known in Biblical history as Samaria," and "All Israel," in contradistinction from that which is known as "All Judea" and "Jewry," which was the home of the Jews.

In another chapter we have given the details of the Babylonian captivity of the Jews, but just at present we desire to call your attention to the fact that their captivity occurred in 588 B. C. (Usher's Chronology, which is not correct by more than eight years, but is sufficiently correct for our present purpose), and the first prophecy uttered concerning that captivity was 623 B. C. and the last one twenty-three years later, i.e., 600 B. C. But the prophet Amos had prophesied concerning the captivity and return from captivity of the ten-tribed kingdom one hundred and sixty-four years prior to the first intimation that the Jews would ever go into captivity, and one hundred and ninety-­nine years before they were carried away into captivity.

In writing concerning the captivity of the ten tribes the names which Amos used to designate them are, "Samaria," used four times; "Joseph," used three times; "Isaac," used twice; "Bethel," used five times, and "Israel," used seventeen times.

Amos is the only one of the prophets who applied the name of Isaac to either one of the two kingdoms. But there can be no possible doubt that Amos gives the name of Isaac to the ten-tribed kingdom. The first verse in the book of Amos reads: "The words of Amos, who was among the herdsmen of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel, in the days of Uzziah, king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam [this is Jero­boam the second] son of Joash, king of Israel. He uses the title of Isaac as follows: "And the high places [groves for worship] of Isaac shall be desolate, and the sanctuaries [Bethel and Dan] of Israel shall be laid waste, and I will rise up against the house of Jeroboam [king of ten-tribed Israel] with the sword. Then Amaziah, the priest of Bethel [the place where they went to worship the calf], sent to Jeroboam, king of Israel, saying, Amos hath conspired against thee in the midst of the house of Israel: the land is not able to bear all his words. For thus Amos saith, Jeroboam shall die by the sword, and Israel shall surely be led away captive out of their own land. Also Amaziah saith unto Amos, O thou seer, go flee away into the land of Judah [Jewry] and there eat bread, and prophesy there; but prophesy not again any more at Bethel: for it is the king's chapel," (Amos 7:9-15).

In the days of Joshua, when the land of Canaan was divided by lot, Bethel fell to the house of Joseph. Thus we find it in possession of the Birthright kingdom and used as the chapel of this idolatrous king, for Jeroboam the first had polluted it with one of the calves.

While it is true that this people were taken to Assy­ria, and were given a promise that they shall eventu­ally return, there is something else which must first occur; for the Lord has said of them that after they were cast out he would "sift the house of Israel among all nations, like as corn is sifted in a sieve, yet shall not the least grain fall upon the earth," (Amos 9:9).

Then, after giving this prophecy concerning the sift­ing of the house of Israel among all nations, Amos prophesies concerning their return, as follows: "And I will bring again the captivity of my people of Israel, and they shall build the waste cities, and inhabit them and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit of them. And I will plant them upon their land, and they shall no more be pulled up out of their land which I have given them, saith the Lord thy God," (Amos 9:14, 15).

But, in spite of the fact that this prophecy was written two centuries before the Jews were sent into captivity, while they were yet counted among the faithful saints, it having no application to them what­ever, and that, when fulfilled, the people to whom it refers SHALL NO MORE BE PULLED UP out of their land -- there are theory-bound men who are so determined that everything Israelitish shall be Jewish that they have the audacity to tell us that this prophecy was fulfilled when the Jews returned from the Babylon­ish captivity.

pokerkid
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THE JEWS GO TO BABYLON AND RETURN

Post#8 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:55 am

THE JEWS GO TO BABYLON AND RETURN
Sha Sha
Posted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 1:37 am Reply with quote Edit/Delete this post Delete this post View IP address of poster
Patriot Joined: 20 Jun 2006 Posts: 2
The twenty-third chapter of Ezekiel contains a short story which seems somewhat veiled, but a knowledge of the two houses and their respective capitals lifts the veil and quickly sweeps it aside. It is of interest to us, or should be, and begins as follows: "There were two women, daughters of one mother, who com­mitted adultery in their youth in Egypt, the names of whom were Aholah, the elder, and Aholibah, her sister, and they were mine, saith the Lord, and they bare sons and daughters." "Thus were their names; SA­MARIA is Aholah [Israel], and JERUSALEM Aho­libah [Judah]," Ezekiel 23:4. Then the story con­tinues and tells how Aholah, the elder, played the har­lot, and was followed into that sin by her sister Aholibah, who was more corrupt than Aholah had been. So God judged them "as women that break wedlock." Before the story is ended the history of Israel's captiv­ity to the Assyrians is told, together with prophecies concerning the captivity of Judah in Babylon.

The Lord further says to the Jews: "And thine elder sister is Samaria [Israel], she and her daughters that dwell at thy left hand; and thy younger sister, that dwelleth at thy right hand, is Sodom and her daugh­ters. Yet hast thou not walked after their ways, nor done after their abominations; but, as if it were a very little thing, thou wast corrupted more than they in all thy ways . . . Neither hath Samaria [Israel] committed half of thy sins; but thou hast multi­plied thine abominations more than they and hast justi­fied [by comparison] thy sisters in all thine abomina­tions which thou hast done. Thou also, which hast judged thy sisters, bear thine own shame for thy sins that thou hast committed more abominable than they," (Ezekiel 16:46-52).

This is in harmony with the record of Judah, as given by Jeremiah in the following: "And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel commit­ted adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not but went and played the harlot also . . . And the Lord said unto me, The backsliding Israel hath justified herself more than treacherous Judah," (Jeremiah 3:8, 11).

"And the Lord said, I will remove Judah also out of my sight, as I have removed Israel, and will cast off this city Jerusalem which I have chosen, and the house of which I said, My name shall be there," (2 Kings 23:27). So Jeremiah was commanded to stand in the gate of the Lord's house and proclaim the word of the Lord unto all the men of Judah, and among other things say unto them: "But go ye now unto my place, which is Shiloh [one of the cities of Joseph], where I set my name at first, and see what I did to it for the wickedness of my people Israel. And now, because ye have done all these works, saith the Lord, and I spake unto you, rising up early and speaking, but ye heard not; and I called you, but ye answered not. Therefore will I do unto this house, which is called by my name, wherein ye trust, and unto the place which I gave to you and to your fathers, as I have done to Shiloh. And I will cast you out of my sight, as I have cast out all your brethren, even the whole seed of Ephraim," (Jeremiah 7:12-15).

The above is the prophecy; the following is a part of the historic record of the fact after its fulfillment. "Thus Judah was carried away captive out of his own land. This is the people whom Nebuchadnezzar car­ried away captive in the seventh year [of his reign] three thousand Jews and three-and-twenty. In the eighteenth year of Nebuchadnezzar he carried away captive from Jerusalem eight hundred thirty-and-two persons. In the three-and-twentieth year of Neb­uchadnezzar, Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard carried away captive of the Jews seven hundred forty-and-five persons. All the persons were four thousand and six hundred," (Jeremiah 52:27-30).

Thus doth Jeremiah teach, that it was the Jews, or the people composing the kingdom of Judah, who were carried into Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar; and in order to show that it was the Jewish people, and they only, who returned from that captivity, we cite the following: "Now these are the children of the province [Judea had been a province to Babylon twenty years before Nebuchadnezzar robbed and burned the temple, destroyed Jerusalem, and took the Jews to Babylon] that went up out of the captivity of those which had been carried away, whom Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, had carried away into Babylon, and came again unto Jerusalem, and Judah every one to his city," (Ezra 2:1).

The books of Ezra and Nehemiah are the only books of the Bible which deal with the history of that re­turn. Jeremiah had prophesied that the Jews should remain captives in the Chaldean Empire (Babylon was the capital of that empire) for seventy years. Just as the seventy years came to an end the empire was taken by the Medes and Persians, and it became known in history as the Medo-Persian Empire.

Ezra begins his record as follows: "Now in the first year of Cyrus, King of Persia, that the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus, King of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout all his king­dom, and put it also in writing, saying, 'Thus said Cyrus King of Persia, The Lord God of heaven hath given me all the kingdoms of the earth; and he hath charged me to build him an house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Who is there among you of all his people? His God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and build the house of the Lord God of Israel [he is the God] which is in Jerusalem. And whosoever remaineth in any place [throughout the kingdom] where he sojourneth, let the men of his place keep him with silver and with gold and with goods and with beasts, besides the free will offering for the house of God that is in Jeru­salem.’

"Then rose up the chief of the fathers of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests, and the Levites, with all them whose spirit God hath raised, to go up to build the house of the Lord which is in Jerusalem," (Ezra 1:1-5).

Do you notice that it is only the men of the tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi who are mentioned as responding to this call? Also you will remember that those three tribes are the three which compose the kingdom of Judah which went into the Babylonish captivity, the ten tribes having been carried away into the Assyrian captivity one hundred and thirty years prior to that.

Also notice that it was not all the fathers nor all of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi that rose up to this call, but the chief of the fathers, and all of the people in those tribes mentioned whose spirit the Lord had made willing. So these willing ones went to work, gathering together their silver, gold, goods, and other precious things. And Cyrus, the king, brought out of the house of one of the idols, where Nebuchadnezzar had put them, all of the vessels belonging to the house of the Lord, and through his treasurer "numbered them unto Sheshbazzar, the prince of Judah. And this is the number of them: Thirty charges of silver, nine and thirty knives. Thirty basins of gold, silver of a second sort four hundred and ten, and other vessels a thousand. All the vessels of gold and silver were five thousand and four hundred. All these did Shesh­bazzar bring up with him of the captivity that were brought up from Babylon to Jerusalem," (Ezra 1:8-11). Please notice that among these things mentioned as belonging to the house of God there is no mention of the Ark of the Covenant. The reason is that the Ark was with the Birthright people.

Some presume to teach that the house of Israel re­turned to Palestine with the Jews when they came from Babylon. When we get to that phase of our subject we will prove by both the Old and New Testa­ments that they did not. But just here we need to say that in the books which deal with the history of this return there is not the slightest mention, direct or in­direct, by inference or reference, of the other kingdom, or house, of Israel.

There is a mention of the army of Samaria by Nehe­miah, but you will find that they belonged to the Post­-Samaritans, who with others opposed and hindered the Jews in their work, until finally they forced them to cease work on the temple. Here is the record: "But it came to pass, that when Sanballat heard that we builded the wall he was wroth, and took great indig­nation, and mocked the Jews. And he spake before his brethren and the army of Samaria, and said, What do these feeble Jews?" (Neh. 4:1, 2). Again: "Now when the adversaries of Judah and Benjamin heard that the children of the captivity builded the temple unto the Lord God of Israel," (Ezra 4:1).

Following these statements is the account of a prolonged persecution of the Jews by those mongrel na­tions of Post-Samaritans. They hired counselors, wrote letters of protest, resorted to trickery and hypocrisy. A letter of protest was written to Artaxerxes, king of Per­sia, which was signed by many, together with “the rest of the nations whom the noble Asnapar brought over and set in the cities of Samaria." This had the ef­fect of stopping the work on the temple, and it did not begin again until during the second year of Darius, at which time these imported Samaritans again tried to hinder. The account of this is given by Josephus, as follows: "When the Samaritans, who were still enemies to the tribes of Judah and Benjamin, heard the sound of trumpets, they came running together, and desired to know what was the occasion of the tumult; and when they perceived that it was the Jews who had been carried captive to Babylon and were re­building the temple, they came to Zorobabel, and to Jeshua, and to the heads of the families, and desired that they would give them leave to build the temple with them, and to be partners with them in building it; for they said, ‘We worship your God, and especially pray to him, and are desirous of your religious settle­ment, and this ever since Shalmaneser, the king of As­syria, transplanted us out of Cuthah and Medea to this place.’ When they thus said, Zorobabel and Jeshua, the high priest, and the heads of the families of the Israelites, replied to them that, ‘it was impossible for them to permit them to be their partners, while they only had been appointed to build that temple at first by Cyrus, and now by Darius, although it was lawful for them to come and worship there if they pleased, and that they could allow them nothing but that in common with them, which was common to them with all other men, to come to their temple, and worship there.’

"When the Cutheans heard this, for the Samaritans have that appellation, they had indignation at it, and persuaded the nations of Syria to desire the governors, in the same manner as they had done formerly in the days of Cyrus, and again in the days of Cambysses afterwards, to put a stop to the building of the temple, and to endeavor to delay and distract the Jews in their zeal about it."

This delayed matters for some time, but finally Darius ordered a search among the royal records, which resulted in the finding of the record of Cyrus concerning the restoration of the Jews, the building of the temple, and what the Lord commanded him in ref­erence to them. The contents of this proclamation is given by Josephus, as follows:

"Cyrus, the king, in the first year of his reign, com­manded that the temple should be built in Jerusalem; and the altar in height should be three-score cubits, and its breadth of the same, with three edifices of pol­ished stone, and one edifice of stone of their own coun­try: and he ordained that the expenses of it should be paid out of the king's revenue. He also commanded that the vessels which Nebuchadnezzar had pillaged out of the temple and carried to Babylon should be restored to the people of Jerusalem, and that the care of these things should belong to Sanadassar, the gov­ernor and president of Syria and Phoenicia, and to his associates, that they may not meddle with that place, but may permit the servants of God, the Jews and their rulers, to build the temple. He also ordained that they should assist him in the work; and that they should pay to the Jews, out of the tribute of the country where they were governors, on account of the sacrifices, bulls and rams, and lambs and kids of goats, and fine flour, and oil, and wine, and all other things that the priests should suggest to them; and that they should pray for the preservation of the king, and of the Persians, and for such as had transgressed any of these orders thus sent to them, he commanded that they should be caught, and hung upon a cross, and their substance confiscated to the king's use. He also prayed to God against them, that if any one attempted to hinder the building of the temple, God would strike him dead, and thereby restrain his wickedness."

Josephus also relates another trick of these Cuthean Samaritans as follows: "When Shalmanesar, the king of Assyria, had it told him, that Hoshea, the king of Israel, had sent privately to So, the king of Egypt, desiring his assistance against him, he was very angry, and made an expedition against Samaria, in the seventh year of the reign of Hoshea; but when he was not admitted into the city by the king, he besieged Samaria three years, and took it by force in the ninth year of the reign of Hoshea, and in the seventh year of Hezekiah, king of Jerusalem, and quite demolished the government of the Israelites, and transplanted all the people into Medea and Persia, among whom lie took King Hoshea alive; and when he had removed these people out of this their land, he transplanted other nations out of Cutha, a place so called, (for there is still a river of that name in Persia,) into Samaria, and into the country of the Israelites. So the ten tribes of the Israelites were removed, etc. . . .

"But now the Cutheans who removed into Samaria, (for that is the name they have been called by to this time, because they were brought out of the country called Cutha, which is a country of Persia, and there is a river of the same name in it,) and are called in the Hebrew tongue Cutheans, but in the Greek tongue Samaritans. And when they see the Jews in prosper­ity they pretend that they are changed, and allied to them, and call them kinsmen, as though they were de­rived from Joseph."

Our object in inserting these quotations is three­fold. First: to show that not only the sacred writers, but also the secular historian, and the rulers, both friendly and unfriendly, who had to do with those Israelites who went into and came out of the Babylon­ish captivity, called them Jews.

Second: to show how the bitter feeling was engen­dered among the Jews against those Cuthea-Samari­tans, whom they called "Dogs," whom they never for­gave, and with whom they never had any dealings. When Christ spoke to the woman of Samaria at the well, she was so surprised that her first words were, "How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans."

Third: to show that neither Josephus, who writes on the "Antiquities of the Jews," nor their enemies, the Cuthea-Samaritans, ever confounds the ten-tribed Is­raelites with the Jewish Israelites.

Oh, how we do thank God that he made Josephus write concerning those imported nations in Samaria, who, because they were living in that land which had been the home of the Birthright kingdom, when they were seeking that which would be advantageous to them, would sidle up to the Jews, and claim kinship.

"AS THOUGH THEY WERE DERIVED FROM JOSEPH." What impudence! Think of the audacity of these imported mongrels claiming to be a portion of the Abrahamic birthright-holders. Is it much marvel that the Jews should dub such a race of fawners by the appropriate name of Dogs?

Both Ezra and Nehemiah, the Biblical historians of the return of the Jews from Babylon to Judea, give the genealogy of all who returned, a list of all the men who worked on the wall, a special list of all the priests who had married strange wives, and the exact number of individuals who returned. The aggregate of these is summed up as follows: "The whole congregation together was forty-and-two thousand three hundred and three-score, besides their servants and their maids, of whom there were seven thousand, three hundred thirty-seven." Ezra states that there were among these servants two hundred singing men and women, but Nehemiah puts the number of singers at two hundred and forty-five. This could easily have been the case by the time he got there, for the going up which was led by him was the second one, and did not take place until fourteen years and a half after that which was led by Ezra. And yet in the genealogical records of this "whole congregation" of forty-nine thousand eight hundred and ninety-seven Jews, there is not a tribal name mentioned except those of Judah, Benjamin and Levi.

Please remember that it is the people of these three tribes who compose the mass of the kingdom of Judah, and who only are called Jews.

Josephus tells us of an epistle which was written by Xerxes, the son of Darius, at the time when the Jews were getting ready to leave Babylon, and sent to Es­dras (Ezra) which was the cause of great rejoicing among them. He speaks of the effect it had upon them, as follows: "So he read the epistle at Babylon to those Jews that went there, but he kept the epistle it­self, and sent a copy of it to all those of his own nation that were in Medea. And when these Jews had un­derstood what piety the king had toward God, and what kindness he had for Esdras, they were all greatly pleased; nay, many of them took their effects with them, and came to Babylon, as very desirous of going down to Jerusalem; but then THE ENTIRE BODY of THE PEOPLE of ISRAEL remained in that coun­try, wherefore there are but two tribes in Asia and Europe subject to the Romans, while THE TEN TRIBES are beyond the Euphrates till now (A. D. 95), and are an immense multitude, and not to be es­timated by numbers."

We note that First and Second Kings, the Chroni­cles, Josephus, Ezra and Nehemiah, all speak of the kingdom of Judah at times, as "Judah and Benja­min." This is why Josephus says that there were only two tribes under the power of the Romans.

The reason for this is supposed to be the fact that the Levites were priests who served in the temple, and did not count for anything when it came to the political and fighting strength of the Jewish people, for the Levites were undoubtedly with Judah and Ben­jamin, as a part of the Kingdom of Judah.

Furthermore, aside from the mention of the tribal name of Ashur, as the name of the tribe to which Anna, the prophetess belonged, there is not a tribal name used in any historic portion of the new Testa­ment, except the three tribal names of the Jewish peo­ple, i.e., Judah, Levi, and Benjamin. The ancestors of Anna could easily have belonged to one of those scattered families who returned out of Israel unto the kingdom of Judah, because they would not serve Jero­boam's calves.

pokerkid
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JOSEPH-ISRAEL LOST

Post#9 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:56 am

JOSEPH-ISRAEL LOST
Sha Sha
Posted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 1:37 am Reply with quote Edit/Delete this post Delete this post View IP address of poster
Patriot Joined: 20 Jun 2006 Posts: 1
In spite of all the facts to the contrary, there is a class of teachers who without one word of historic proof insist upon teaching that the Egypt-Israelites returned with the Jews. Here is the argument of a commentator who has written two commentaries on "The Revelation." He is a good man and has a pure heart; but in so far as this subject is concerned, he cer­tainly has not informed himself. He first asks the question: "Were not the ten tribes lost after the de­portation of Shalmanezar, as none but Judah and Ben­jamin returned in the Exodus of Nehemiah?" And answers it thus: "There is a general misapprehension and delusion on that subject. As the ten tribes were carried into captivity a hundred and thirty-four years before Judah and Benjamin; yet doubtless many of the ten tribes returned with them to Palestine. So the ten tribes were not lost, but they simply lost their tribe-hood, as they did not return in their organized tribes, but as individuals. Hence all of this hue and cry about the lost tribes, ransacking all the world to find them, and writing vast volumes, is a piece of twaddle and nonsense."

Thus with one presumptive wave of the hand he at­tempts to sweep from before our eyes the most im­portant subject, so far as the vindication of the Word of God is concerned, that has ever made an appeal to a Bible-loving people for an honest hearing.

This same commentator speaks of "The Exodus of Nehemiah," and of the number that returned "under Nehemiah," as though there were but one Exodus from Babylon. Whereas there were two, the first and largest being under Ezra, while that of Nehemiah was fourteen years later, and was composed of those Jews "which were left" of the Babylonish captivity, who did not go up with the first or Ezra exodus.

He further says: "The ten tribes had been in the Chaldean Empire two hundred years at the time of the Exodus." But it is written "that Israel was taken into Assyria, and placed in the regions of the rivers Hilah and Habor," a region of country more than five hun­dred miles from Babylon. To us it seems an insult to the integrity of God for any man to presume that the ten tribes ever saw Babylon.

This commentator still further says: "Of course they were but a fraction of Judah and Benjamin" which returned. But God says: "All the men of Judah and Benjamin gathered themselves together unto Jerusa­lem, and EVERY ONE unto his city." Is there any question here as to which we shall believe? None whatever; but, since our brother says that only a frac­tion of Judah and Benjamin returned, we would ask:

Where are the remaining fractions from which that fraction was taken? And since he tells us that doubt­less many of the ten tribes returned with that fraction, we would ask: Where is the whole number from which the many came? And, without waiting for an an­swer, we will hasten to say that when this man was driven to use the "doubtless" argument, he had evi­dently lost something, and that the people in question are lost, at least to him.

When the Lord had determined to give Israel a bill of divorce, he called Hosea to prophesy against her, and, in order to have a perfect type of her adulterous condition, made him take a wife of whoredoms and bear children of whoredoms because the people of "the land had committed great whoredoms, departing from the Lord."

As the wife of the prophet bore children, the Lord took the privilege of naming them, and in each name uttered a prophecy.

When the first daughter was born, "God said unto him, Call her name Lo-ruhamah [which means, not having obtained mercy], for I will no more have mercy upon the house of Israel; but I will utterly take them away. But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah," (Hosea 1:6, 7).

"Now when she [the prophet's wife] had weaned Lo-ruhamah, she conceived and bare a son. Then said God, Call his name Lo-ammi [which means, not my people], for ye are not my people, and I will not be your God. Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sands of the sea, which cannot be meas­ured nor numbered -- and it shall come to pass that in the place where it was said unto them Ye are not my people, there it shall be said unto them, Ye are the sons of the Living God," (Hosea 1:8-10). Beloved, do you catch the wonderful meaning to all this? Look! The name of the newborn son is Lo-ammi, for God refuses any longer to be the God of that people among whom the child is born; he casts them off and forsakes them.

"Yet" -- O do you see the immutability of the prom­ise of the covenant-making and covenant-keeping Je­hovah, who after making an unconditional promise must keep it, even if some conditions do change? God has said it. He cannot lie; with him there is "no vari­ableness nor shadow of turning." He has promised Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, that their seed shall become "many nations." "I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven." "I will make thee fruitful and multiply thee." "Thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south." And then he told Joseph that all these promises should be fulfilled in his sons, at that same time making Ephraim his first-born. Then in due time he separated the Sceptre and the Birthright, causing all the tribes to gather under the one or the other, making two king­doms of the entire Abrahamic posterity, saying, "This thing is of me."

But now "Ephraim-Israel is joined to his idols." "They are not my people," "I will not be their God," "I cast them out"; and "Yet," in spite of this, and al­though driven from home by their enemies, "yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sands of the sea, which cannot be numbered." This language proves that, although cast off, they must still increase and fulfill their God-appointed destiny by growing into a multitude of people in the midst of the earth, and in due time become a great nation or a company of nations. Also, the words which immediately follow these show that, while in that cast-out condition, and while developing into their destiny as regards mul­tiplicity, they will become lost, so lost that they them­selves will not know who they are. For it shall come to pass that, in the place where they go, they will be told that they are not the people of God, that they are not Jacob's seed, that they are not Israel, as at the time of the casting off they knew themselves to be. And when they are told that they are not the people of God they shall have so forgotten their origin, that they will believe it. This being the case, they certainly will be LOST, at least to themselves, and will need some one to prove to them that they are the descendants of God's chosen people. So, when the time comes, the Lord has said that those persons shall be there, and shall say unto them: "Ye are the sons of the Living God."

While Israel was true to the Lord, she was likened to a delicate and comely woman, and the Lord called her his wife; but when she became an idolatrous na­tion, she was called a harlot, and the Lord treated her as a woman who had broken wedlock, by giving her a bill of divorce. After the Lord has "cast her out of his sight," and allowed her to be carried away into the Assyrian captivity, she is spoken of in prophecy as "forsaken," a woman in "widowhood," "a wife of youth," "refused," "barren" and "desolate."

But the Lord made a promise of redemption to that same desolate one, saying: "Thou shalt forget the shame of thy youth and shalt not remember the re­proach of thy widowhood any more. For thy Maker is thy husband [once more], the Lord of Hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; the God of the whole earth shall be called. For the Lord hath called thee as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, and a wife of youth, when thou wast refused, saith thy God. For a small moment have I forsaken thee, but with great mercies will I gather thee," (Isa. 54:4-7).

You will also find by consulting this same chapter that, while barren, forsaken, and desolate, this same woman was to become the mother of more children than while married, or, in other words, Israel was to increase while cast out more than before. This is exactly what the prophet Hosea has declared in the prophecy which we have been considering.

The Lord further uses Hosea to teach that Israel would become lost after being cast out in the follow­ing: "For she said: I will go after my lovers (Israel is swallowed up: now shall they be among the Gentiles as a vessel wherein is no pleasure, for they are gone up to Assyria, a wild ass alone by himself: Ephraim hath hired lovers), that give me my bread and my water, my wool and my flax, mine oil and my drink. Therefore, behold, I will hedge up thy way with thorns, and make a wall, that SHE SHALL NOT FIND HER PATHS," (Hosea 8:8, 9; 2:5, 6).

To show that the Scriptures, which we have just quoted, refer to Israel, aside from the Jews, we call your attention to the opening words of the chapter in which the non-parenthetical, or enclosing text appears, which is as follows: "Say ye unto your brethren Ammi, and to your sisters, Ruhamah. Plead with your mother, plead! for she is not my wife, neither am I her hus­band."

When God gave to Israel the name of Lo-ammi, or not my people, it was because he had cast them off, and they were no longer his people. For when the Lord gives a name to a person, or a nation, he names them in harmony with their character or condition. But while it is true that Israel was not at that time the people of God, it is true that Judah was then ruling with him, and was counted among the faithful; hence, they were Ammi, or the people of God.

Also when God gave to Israel the name of Lo-ru­hamah, the meaning of which is, not having obtained mercy, he did so because that name was characteristic of his attitude toward them, at that time, for he de­clared that he would no longer have mercy upon them, but would cast them out. But at that same time he said, "I will have mercy upon the house of Judah." So, if Israel was Lo-ruhamah, the one not having obtained mercy, then Judah was Ruhamah, the one which obtained mercy. For that word "Lo" is the Hebrew neg­ative, and, in the Scriptures under consideration, the words Ammi, Lo-ammi, Ruhamah, and Lo-ruhamah are Hebrew words which are transferred, but not translated.

These things being true, it is clear that the brethren Ammi, and their sisters Ruhamah, who are exhorted to plead, are the Jews and Jewesses of the kingdom of Judah. It is they who are exhorted to plead with their mother, i.e., to plead with that out from which they came, namely: THE KINGDOM OF ISRAEL.

Yes, Israel, she of whom the Lord hath said: "She is not my wife, neither am I her husband;" she, the woman of whoredom: she, the woman who had broken wedlock; she, who had run after hired lovers; she, who asked counsel of cattle and stone images; she, who was joined to Jeroboam's calves, and of whom, after she was sent adrift, the Lord said that he would hedge up her way, and make a wall, "that she shall not find her paths," i.e., lost.

The Lord further declares, "When Ephraim spake trembling he exalted himself in Israel; but when he offended in Baal he died. And now they sin more and more, and have made them molten images of their sil­ver, and idols according to their own understanding, all of it the work of craftsmen; they say of them, Let the men who sacrifice kiss the calves. Therefore they shall be as the morning cloud, and as the early dew that pass­eth away, as the chaff that is driven with the whirlwind out of the floor, and as the smoke out of the chimney," (Hosea 13:1-3).

After the smoke out of a chimney has disappeared, after the sun has risen and scattered the morning cloud, after the dew has been drawn from leaf and blade, and passed away -- if we were to ask you to hunt that scattered cloud, to search for that smoke, and find again that dew, we are certain you would be will­ing to admit that they were lost. This is certainly what the Lord intends us to understand concerning the kingdom known as Israel, for subsequent to this, and yet prior to the time when the Jews went into the Baby­lonian captivity, he declares, through Jeremiah the prophet, "My people have been lost sheep."

Ezekiel not only corroborates these prophets, but he visited Israel about twelve years before Nebuchad­nezzar destroyed Jerusalem and took the Jews to Baby­lon. He says, "As I was among the captives by the river of Chebar, the heavens were opened, and I saw visions of God," (Ezek. 1:1). You will find by con­sulting the map that this river Chebar is in the same region of country with Habor, Halah and the river Gozan, where the Israelites were deported by Shalman­eser, king of Assyria. In fact, the rivers Gozan and Halah empty into the Chebar, which, in turn, empties into the Euphrates. Chebar, Chabor, Habor, Kebah and Heber are only different forms of the same word.

Ezekiel continues and says, "Then I came to them of the captivity at Tel-abib, that dwelt by the river of Che­bar, and I sat where they sat, and remained there astonished among them seven days. And it came to pass at the end of seven days, that the Lord came unto me, saying, Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel," (Ezek. 3:15, 17). Then after speaking of many who should be destroyed by sword, famine and pestilence because of their abomin­ations, how that he would scatter their bones round about the altars of their idols, he says: "Yet I will leave a remnant, that ye may have some that shall escape the sword among the nations, when he shall be scattered through the countries. And they that es­cape of you shall remember me among the nations whither they shall be carried," (Ezek. 6:8, 9).

Again, the offended God of Israel uses Ezekiel to declare, "I will scatter thee among the heathen and disperse thee in the countries, and will" -- What? De­stroy them? No, but -- "consume thy filthiness out of thee," (Ezek. 22:15). After this, the Lord declares this dispersion to have been accomplished, saying: "I scattered them among the heathen and they were dis­persed through the countries . . . and when they entered into the heathen, whither they went, they profaned my holy name, when they said to them, These are the people of the Lord, and are gone forth out of his land. But I had pity for mine holy name, which the house of Israel had profaned among the heathen, whither they went. Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord God, I do not this for your sakes, O house of Israel, but for mine holy name's sake, which ye have profaned among the heathen, whither ye went. And I will sanctify my great name . . . and the heathen shall know that I am the Lord God, when I shall be sanctified in you before their eyes. For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and bring you into your own land," (Ezek. 36:19-24).

The Jews were taken into Babylon and returned from thence; but the house of Israel, as herein stated, was scattered throughout all countries. But for the vindication of his holy name, he declared that he should yet be sanctified in the eyes of all nations, by saving Israel and bringing them back to their own land. When this takes place, Israel shall come out from all coun­tries.

In two of these quotations they are called, "The dispersed." This will enable us to understand Zeph. 3:10 -- "From beyond the rivers of Ethiopia, my sup­pliants, even the daughter of my dispersed, shall bring mine offering.”

Since we understand that "the dispersed" are the ten tribes, which composed the Birthright kingdom, we comprehend the grave import of the question asked by the chief man of Judah in the following: "When the Pharisees heard that the people murmured such things concerning him; and the Pharisees and the chief priests sent officers to take him. Then Jesus said unto them, Yet a little while am I with you, and then I go unto him that sent me. Ye shall seek me and shall not find me: and where I am, thither ye cannot come. Then said the Jews among themselves, ‘Whither will he go that we cannot find him? "Will he go unto the dispersed among the Gentiles?’ " (John 7:32-35).

This very question reveals the fact that the Jews knew that the ten tribes were dispersed among the nations, and that they did not know where they were; hence, that they could not go to them. They also comprehended the fact that, if this man called Christ should prove to be the long-expected Messiah, he did know where the lost people were, and could go to them. It is also an admission, from the chief men of Judah, that a portion of the race were lost.

Isaac Leeser, an eminent Jewish scholar, who trans­lated the Hebrew Scriptures for the English speaking Jews, says in his great work, "The Jewish Religion," Vol. I, page 256: "Let us observe that by this return of the captives (from Babylon) the Israelitish nation was not restored; since the ten tribes, who had for­merly composed the kingdom of Israel, were yet left in banishment; and to this day the researches of travelers and wise men have not been able to trace their fate."

Micah, also, falls into exact line with the rest of the prophets, for through him the Lord declares: "I will surely assemble, O Jacob, all of thee; I will surely gather the remnant of Israel; I will put them together as the sheep of Bozrah, as the flock in the midst of their fold, they shall make great noise by reason of the multitude of men. The breaker is come up before them: they have broken up, and passed through the gate, and are gone out by it; and their king shall pass before them, and the Lord on the head of them," (Micah 2:12, 13).

The reason the Lord says that he will assemble and put them together is, that, prior to the time when Shal­maneser took the main body of the kingdom of Israel into Assyria, it seems that a former king (Tiglath-Pileser) had taken the Reubenites, the Gadites, a portion of Naphtali, and one of the half tribes of Manasseh, "And brought them unto Halah, and Habor and Hara, and to the river Gozan." Later, the rest of the ten tribes were brought to this same region.

As we have already noted, the last that Josephus knew concerning the ten tribes, is that they were be­yond the river Euphrates. This river rises at the foot of Mount Ararat, up in the Caucasian Pass, between the Black and Caspian seas. Israel, making a great noise because of the multitude, went out through this pass, or gate, or entrance.

What is meant by the king passing on before them is explained later.

Sha Sha
pokerhead
Posts: 10

JACOB'S SEED DIVIDED INTO TWO KINGDOMS

Post#10 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 3:05 am

This should go between THE SCEPTRE AND THE BIRTHRIGHT All Israelites Are Not Jews

Sorry for the confusion here....





When Boaz took Ruth the Moabitess for a wife, the people who were assembled prayed for her, saying: "The Lord make thee like Rachel and like Leah, which two did build the house of Israel." The fact that these two women, as the wives of Jacob, were the builders of the house of Israel, would of necessity divide the im­mediate household of Jacob into two families. Hence the pertinency of the question: "Considerest thou not the two families which the Lord hath chosen?" (Jer. 33:24).

Since the covenant promise of the Birthright was given to one of these two families, and that of the Scep­tre to the other, it would be but natural -- especially since one of these forthcoming blessings was to be so much superior to the other -- for these families to keep somewhat apart, so as to keep their family distinctions intact. This they did, and yet they dwelt together for a number of centuries, apparently without any factions whatever.

Together, as one nation, they lived on in Goshen. Together the Sceptre and the Birthright families are pressed into bondage. Together the children of Rachel, of whom it was prophesied that there should be thou­sands of millions, and the children of Leah, the mother of coming royalty -- royalty which, as the sequel proves, is not only the grandest and best that this world will ever know, but also the most glorious that will ever be known in all the universe of God -- together they bend their necks to the yoke, and their backs to the burdens. Together they serve those unjust taskmasters. To­gether their Lord, whose presence was with them, brought them out of that galling Egyptian servitude, out through the Red Sea, and into the wilderness. There, still together, they refreshed their spirits by drinking from that spiritual Rock which followed them; and there they refreshed their bodies with drink from that literal rock which, as we shall prove, they carried with them. Together they ate the same spiritual and temporal meat, albeit, at times, that temporal meat was angels' food which God sent down from one of their habitations.

Together they crossed the Jordan, marched around Jericho, drove out the Canaanites, and -- for a season only -- inhabited that promised land; in which they en­joyed the blessings and privileges of a theocratic gov­ernment. But it is recorded that they lightly esteemed the Rock of their salvation, cried down the theocracy, and shouted over a monarchy. Refusing Him who had honored, protected and cherished them as a hus­band doth a wife, despising that Divine One who had followed them and led them, and nourished them, and fought for them, they demanded that like the nations around them, a man should be their king.

Then it was that there arose trouble, trouble which resulted in strifes and factions galore; for after the es­tablishment of the monarchy only three kings -- namely: Saul, David and Solomon -- reigned over all Israel in one united kingdom.

After the death of Solomon, contingencies arose in Israel, which brought the two families that held the covenant blessings face to face with issues that resulted in a division of the nation, which placed both the fam­ilies of Rachel and Leah, or more properly, Judah and Joseph, since they are the promise-holders -- into posi­tions to fulfill their God-appointed destinies. And yet we shall find that the mills of God do grind, oh so very slowly.

There is contained in the eleventh and twelfth chap­ters of the book of First Kings a record of the division of the tribes of Israel into two kingdoms, with a son of the royal family as king over one kingdom, and a son of the house of Joseph as king over the other and larger kingdom.

King Solomon had married strange wives, and be­cause of them he had burnt incense, and sacrificed unto Moloch and other idols; and because of this, "The Lord said unto Solomon, Forasmuch as this is done of thee, and thou hast not kept my covenant and my statutes, which I have commanded thee, I will surely rend the kingdom from thee, and give it to thy servant. Not­withstanding, in thy days I will not do it, for David thy father's sake; but I will rend it out of the hand of thy son. Howbeit I will not rend away all the kingdom; but I will give one tribe to thy son for David my ser­vant's sake, and for Jerusalem's sake which I have chosen," I Kings 11:11-13.

The twenty-sixth verse of the same chapter speaks of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, an Ephrathite, Solo­mon's servant. It is known that the word Ephrathite means Ephraimite. The record further states, "And the man Jeroboam was a mighty man of valor: and Solomon seeing the young man that he was industrious, he made him ruler over all the charge of the house of Joseph," I Kings 11:28.

When the Birthright was transferred to the sons of Joseph, Ephraim, the younger, was set before Manas­seh, the elder, and, aside from the fact of joint inherit­ance in the multitude of posterity, Ephraim seems to enjoy the special Birthright, or firstborn distinctions. This is shown in several ways; but at present we will only call your attention to the fact that God says: "I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my first-born," Jer. 31:9.

We have in this man Jeroboam, a servant of Solomon's, an Ephraimite, who was ruler over all the Birth­right family. God had told Solomon, that after his death he would give the kingdom to his servant, but, "not all." In harmony with these things we read:

"And it came to pass that at the time when Jeroboam went out of Jerusalem, that the prophet Ahijah, the Shilonite, found him in the way; and he had clad him­self with a new garment; and the two were alone in the field. And Ahijah caught the new garment that was on him, and rent it in twelve pieces. And he said to Jeroboam, Take thee ten pieces: for thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel, Behold I will rend the kingdom out of the hand of Solomon, and will give ten tribes to thee . . . . Howbeit I will not take the whole kingdom out of his hand: . . . for David my servant's sake, whom I chose --because he kept my commandments and my statutes. But I will take the kingdom out of his son's hand, and will give it unto thee, even ten tribes. And unto his son will I give one tribe, that David my servant may have a light alway before me in Jerusalem, the city which I have chosen to put my name there. And I will take thee, and thou shalt reign according to all that thy soul desireth, and thou shalt be king over Israel."

In this prophecy, there is made a promise to a son of the house of Joseph, that he shall reign over ten tribes, and be king over Israel. Hence if Jeroboam ever re­ceived his promised kingdom, it must have been formed by a confederacy of ten of the tribes of Israel, and that ten-tribed kingdom or confederation must needs be called "ISRAEL," or the prophecy fails.

After this prophecy, which God gave to Ahijah to de­liver to Jeroboam, was made public, Solomon became so jealous for himself and posterity that he undertook to kill Jeroboam; while he, in order to escape the wrath of Solomon, fled to Egypt and remained there until after the death of Solomon. At the death of Solomon the royal succession fell to his son, Rehoboam, who, at the time of his accession, had gathered with all Israel at Shechem, the place where, for reasons which will be given later, Israel crowned her sovereigns. But difficul­ties arose. The people had grievances which they want­ed adjusted, before they were willing to submit to the rule of this young sovereign. Solomon had laid upon them an enormous tax for the building and furnishing of the temple and royal palaces. These were finished and furnished, but the taxes were not abated. Also there was this taxation without representation by any in Is­rael, except from the royal tribe of Judah. Still, in spite of the fact that a spirit of rebellion had possession of them because of these facts, they were willing to hold a consultation with Rehoboam, in hope that their condition might be bettered and amity might still pre­vail. So they made Jeroboam their spokesman, and directed him to say to the young king; "Thy father made our yoke grievous; now, therefore, make thou the grievous service of thy father, and his heavy yoke which he put upon us, lighter, and we will serve thee."

His reply to this request was, "Depart yet for three days, then come again to me." During this three days of grace, which he had asked, and they had granted, Rehoboam first consulted with the old men, asking them how they would advise him to answer the people. They gave him wholesome counsel, saying to him that if he would "Speak good words to them, then they will be thy servants forever."

Then he consulted with the young men, with whom he had grown up, asking them how they would advise him. But their advice was hasty and hot-headed. They said, "Thus shalt thou say unto them, My little finger shall be thicker than my father's loins. And now, whereas my father did lade you with a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke: my father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions."

When the three days had expired, Jeroboam and the people came again to King Rehoboam, as he had ap­pointed, to receive the answer to their request. Then Rehoboam answered them roughly, forsaking the coun­sel of the old men, and adhering to the counsel which the young men in their pride and egotism had given, using their very words.

"Whips" and "scorpions!' How insulting! Surely in all the figures of speech there could not have been chosen any so hard for that "elect" people to swallow. But they did not swallow them; they rebelled. The com­mand to the people was, "To your tents, O Israel!" The challenge to the royal house was, "Now, see to thy own house!"

Rehoboam's next move was to send Adoram, who had charge of the tribute, to collect the taxes then due. But instead of paying their taxes, the people stoned the man to death; and as soon as Rehoboam heard this, he fled in his chariot, and with all speed, to Jerusalem.

Then comes the following: "So Israel rebelled against the house of David unto this day. And it came to pass, when all Israel heard that Jeroboam was come again, that they sent and called him unto the congrega­tion and made him king over all Israel . . . And when Rehoboam was come to Jerusalem, he assembled all the house of Judah, with the tribe of Benjamin, an hundred and four score thousand men which were war­riors, to fight against the house of Israel, to bring the kingdom again to Rehoboam, the son of Solomon. But the word of God came unto Shemaniah the man of God, saying, Speak unto Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and unto all the house of Judah and Benjamin, and to the remnant of the people, saying, Thus saith the Lord, Ye shall not go up, nor fight against your brethren the children of Israel return every man to his house; for this thing is from me." i.e., the division, I Kings 12:19-24.

Well may the Lord say, "This thing is from me." In the division of that race into two kingdoms, he has ful­filled his word to Solomon concerning the rending of the kingdom out of the hand of his son, and giving it to his servant. Yet, in doing so, he remembered not only his oath to David, but also his word to Solomon, in that he did not rend away all the kingdom; for there was one tribe, that of Benjamin, left with the royal tribe.

Also the prophecy of Ahijah to Jeroboam was ful­filled, for he became king of the ten-tribed kingdom, which, by Divine appointment, retained the national name of Israel, while that of Judah was given to the other kingdom. Thus the titles "House of Israel," and the "House of Judah" are used to designate the two kingdoms, as they stand separated and in opposition to each other.

Moreover, since the Birthright tribes, Ephraim and Manasseh, went with the ten-tribed kingdom, and a scion of the house of Joseph, to whom pertains the Birthright, was king over that kingdom, and a son of the royal house of Judah, to whom pertains the Sceptre, was king over the other kingdom, which bears the name of the inheritor of the Sceptre, then, surely, the Sceptre and the Birthright were separated then and there. They were not only separated, but each became a nucleus around which either the one or the other, of all the seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, did gather. Thus the SCEPTRE and the BIRTHRIGHT families each became the head and representative of a distinct nation, or commonwealth. Each was then free to go forward, independent of the other, and fulfill its God-appointed destiny; one to ful­fill the first covenant which the Lord made with their father Abraham, that of becoming many nations, and the other to fulfill the second covenant of bringing forth the Messiah.

The first thing recorded of Jeroboam, as king of Is­rael, is that he built the city of Shechem, in Mount Ephraim, and dwelt there. This city was the first capital of that kingdom. From there the king of Is­rael went out and built the city of Penuel, and seemed to prosper for a short season. But Jeroboam fell to thinking that, if his subjects were allowed to continue going to Jerusalem to sacrifice unto the Lord, their hearts would turn again to Rehoboam, whose capital city it was, and they would then kill him, and go again to the kingdom of Judah.

Therefore he made two calves of gold, and said unto the people, "It is too much [trouble] for you to go to Jerusalem: behold thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. And he set one in Bethel, and one in Dan. And this thing became a sin, for the people went to worship before the one [in Bethel], and even unto Dan. And he made a house of high places, and made priests of the lowest of the people, which were not of the sons of Levi.

“And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like unto the feast that is in Judah, and he offered upon the altar. So did he in Bethel, sacrificing unto the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places which he had made. So he offered upon the altar which he had made in Bethel, on the fifteenth day of the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised in his own heart; and ordained a feast unto the Children of Israel, and he offered upon the altar and burnt incense," I Kings 12:28-33.

This was the great sin which was such a curse to the people. But we want you to note just how the Lord speaks of it. After the prophet whom he had sent out of Judah had proclaimed the doom of Jeroboam, he further adds: "The Lord shall smite Israel, as a reed is shaken in the water, and he shall root up Israel out of his good land, which he gave to their fathers, and shall scatter them beyond the river, because they have made their groves, provoking the Lord to anger. And he shall give Israel up because of the sins of Jeroboam, who did sin, and who made Israel to sin," I Kings 14:15, 16.

Dear reader, please note that it was Israel, and not Judah, over which Jeroboam reigned; that it was Is­rael, and not Judah, whom he caused to sin; that it was Israel the ten-tribed kingdom, and not Judah, the royal kingdom, that worshiped those two golden calves which Jeroboam the king of Israel had set up in his own territory, and not in the land of Judah; that it was Israel whom the Lord declared he would give up, root out of that land, and scatter beyond the river, because of this thing. For the people of the kingdom of Judah never did worship those golden calves; neither did they worship at Bethel, nor in Dan: they worshiped in Je­rusalem. Later, the royal kingdom did go into idol­atry; but it was Baalism, and not this special form of idolatry which had its origin in Jeroboam, for this was confined alone to Israel.

We find that the history of the two kingdoms is in­termingled throughout the books of First and Second Kings, but never confounded. So that, with a little care and thoughtfulness on our part, there need be no confusion. For instance, it is recorded that, "The days which Jeroboam reigned were two-and-twenty years, and he slept with his fathers, and Nadab, his son, reigned in his stead," I Kings 14:20. But the very next verse tells us that, "Rehoboam, the son of Solo­mon, reigned in Judah. Reboboam was forty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem." The two reigns began simultaneously. If Jeroboam's reign lasted for twenty-two years, and Rehoboam's only for seventeen years, then it must needs be that some other king or kings reigned for five years contemporaneously with Jeroboam, unless the kingdom of Judah had collapsed; but it had not. So the record declares, "Now, in the eighteenth year of Jero­boam, the son of Nabat, reigned Abijah over Judah. Three years reigned he in Jerusalem," I Kings 15:1. Seventeen years for Rehoboam and three for Abijah, are only twenty of Jeroboam's twenty-two years. So if the record be correct, we shall expect it to tell who ascended the throne of Judah in the twentieth year of Jeroboam's reign. This it does do, as follows: "And in the twentieth year of Jeroboam, king of Israel, reigned Asa over Judah," I Kings 15:9.

Now, if Asa lived and reigned more than two years, he lived to see the death of Jeroboam and the elevation of his successor. Hence, the record continues: "And Nadab, the son of Jeroboam, began to reign over Is­rael in the second year of Asa, king of Judah, and reigned over Israel two years. And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, and walked in the ways of his father, and in the sin wherewith he made Israel to sin."

Then follows a record of the fulfillment of the prophecy concerning the doom of Jeroboam, viz., the entire destruction of his family, at the hand of Baasha, of the house of Issachar, who reigned instead of Nadab son of Jeroboam. Hence it is recorded that "In the third year of Asa, king of Judah, began Baasha, the son of Ahijah, to reign over all Israel in Tirzah, twenty-and-four years. And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, and walked in the ways of Jeroboam, and in his sin wherewith he made Israel to sin," I Kings 15:33, 34.

We have brought you down to the contemporaneous reigns of Asa, the third king in Judah, and Baasha, the third king in Israel, not only to show that there need be no confusion in this intermingled history, but also for another purpose, which follows. You will notice that in the last quotation, the expression "all Israel" occurs, while in the twenty-second verse is the corresponding expression "all Judah." "Then King Asa made a proclamation throughout all Judah." These expres­sions, all Israel and all Judah, are undoubtedly used as contradistinctive titles of the two kingdoms into which the people were divided.

The expression "all Israel," as used in the above quotation, and with the same meaning in many other places in the Scriptures, has confused many students. They seem to think it means, or ought to mean, all the people who are the descendants of Israel, i.e., all Is­raelites; whereas it simply means, in this instance, and many others, all the country occupied by the ten tribes which formed the kingdom of Israel, just as the expres­sion "all Judah," or "all Judea" -- the Greek form of the same term -- is used to designate all of the country which was given to the tribes of Judah and Benjamin, they being the tribes which composed the kingdom of Judah. Jerusalem, the capital of the kingdom, was lo­cated in that portion allotted to Benjamin, and Judah's portion was the hill country south of Jerusalem.

Sha Sha
pokerhead
Posts: 10

Post#11 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 3:06 am

JOSEPH-ISRAEL LOST (CONTINUED)



If it could be proved that Israel returned with Judah from the Babylonish captivity, it would only prove that her prophetic history was not fulfilled, and that those prophets which both Jews and Christians have received as the true prophets of God, are but lying prophets. For Jeremiah also has given utterance to prophetic sayings which are in full accord with those of the prophets already quoted, and which cover the same ground, but give additional facts. As in the follow­ing:

"Therefore will I cast you out of this land, into a land that ye know not, neither ye nor your fathers, and there shall ye serve other gods day and night; where I will not show you favor. Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that it shall no more be said, The Lord liveth, that brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt; but, The Lord liveth, that brought the children of Israel from the land of the north, and from all the lands whither he had driven them: and I will bring them again unto their land that I gave unto their fathers.

"Behold I will send for many fishers, saith the Lord, and they shall fish for them; and after I will send many hunters, and they shall hunt them from every mountain, and from every hill, and from out of the holes of the rocks. For mine eyes are upon all their ways: they are not hid from my face, neither is their iniquity hid from mine eyes. And first I will recompense their iniquity and their sin double; because they have defiled my land, they have filled mine inheritance with the carcasses of their detestable and abominable things. O Lord, my strength and my fortress, and my refuge in the day of affliction, the Gentiles shall come unto thee from the ends of the earth, and shall say, Surely our fathers have inherited lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit. Shall a man make gods unto himself, and they are no gods? Therefore, behold, I will this once cause them to know. I will cause them to know mine hand and my might; and they shall know that thy name is the Lord," (Jer. 16:13-21).

We have given the above quotation in full and at length, because, as a prophecy, it contains the facts of the casting out and return of Israel, together with a brief epitome of their history while thus cast out. Let us notice them:

(I) "I will cast you out of this land." We know that they were taken into Assyria.

(2) "Into a land that ye know not." They were not to remain in Assyria.

(3) "Neither ye nor your fathers." A land un­known to the entire race, and as they were among the most, if not the most, civilized nations on the earth, we are safe in saying that it was to be a long way from their home; that they were to move on through the nations until they came into unknown regions, into the uninhabited, unexplored wilderness beyond the pales of civilization.

(4) "And there shall ye serve other gods day and night." They can then and there get their fill of idol­atry.

(5) "I will not show you favor," i.e., not ease their punishment, until, as he says, he has first recom­pensed "their iniquity and their sin double; because they have defiled my land, they have filled mine inher­itance with the carcasses of their detestable and abominable things," i.e., Jeroboam's calves, Ahab's image of Baal, Moloch, etc.

(6) When he says that he will not show them favor, the context proves that he means for a certain season or period. For he says, I will bring them again into their land, i. e., the Samaritan portion of Pales­tine.

(7) "I will send for many [Hebrew, rab -- abun­dant, enough, plenteous, a multitude] fishers." Jesus said to his disciples, "I will make you fishers of men." He came to his own tribal house, Judah, but his own received him not, and then he said unto them: "Your house is left unto you desolate." But he said to his fishers, "Go to the lost sheep of the HOUSE of Israel." Six hundred and thirty years prior to this, one hundred and twenty years after Israel had been cast out, and before the house of Judah were taken to Babylon, God had said through the mouth of Jeremiah, "My people hath been lost sheep: their shepherds [their priests, who were of the lowest type of the people] have caused them to go astray, they have turned them away on the mountains; they have gone from mountain to hill [wandering], they have forgotten their resting place," i.e., their home.

(8) "And they shall fish them." These gospel fish­ers of men are successful. Lost Israel takes the bait and is fished. Hallelujah!

All this is in harmony with the prophetic history of Israel, as read by the other prophets. For when Hosea is being used to prophesy concerning Israel being hedged in with walls and thorns, and losing her paths, the Lord further adds, "Behold I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfortably [marginal reading: speak friendly to her heart] unto her. And it shall be in that day saith the Lord that thou shalt call me Ishi [my husband] and shall call me no more Baali [my master]. For I will take the names of Baalim [plural of Baal] out of her mouth, and they shall no more be remembered by their names," (Hosea 2:14, 16, 17). Is it any wonder that this same prophet declares, "Ephraim shall say, What have I to do any more with idols?" (Hosea 4:8).

Concerning this fact of Israel's receiving the gospel while cast out: "Thus saith the Lord, The people which were left of the sword found grace in the wilder­ness; even Israel," (Jer. 31:2). The law came by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. Hence the lost sheep of the house of Israel receive the gospel blessings because of the fishers which are sent to them.

(9) "And after (that) I will send for many hun­ters, and they shall hunt them." The violent protest of our brother, from whose commentary we quoted on a former occasion, is prima-facie evidence that this prophecy concerning the hunting for them has been, and is being fulfilled; it is as follows: "Hence, all of this hue and cry about the lost tribes, ransacking all the world to find them, and writing vast volumes, is a piece of twaddle and nonsense. Thousands of people are now studying (Glory to God!) great books (Thank God for them!) which claim to identify the 'lost tribes.'" Amen! and amen! For God says: "They shall hunt for them."

Another of those who object to so much hunting, Rawlinson, has unwittingly proved this prophecy to have been fulfilled, for he says: "They (the ten tribes) have been found a hundred times in a hundred different localities." This proves that the Lord, in order that his word of truth might be fulfilled, has, to say the least, raised up one hundred hunters. Had Prof. Raw­linson said, "They were supposed to have been found a hundred times in a hundred different localities," we could not doubt that his statement was true. For it is true that thousands are studying, and writing, and ransacking the world, to find the lost tribes of Israel; and the prophecy concerning the hunters and the hunted, stands vindicated, albeit many have hunted in vain.

Otherwise, we are forced to the conclusion that one of the holy men who was moved by the Holy Ghost to write the Bible was jesting, when he wrote concerning a corps of men who should become hunters of that which was not lost. And since God has furnished the hunters -- for it is by reading his Word that they be­come inspired to hunt -- we would be forced to conclude that he would play, or juggle, with the credulity of the human race.

(10) It is evident from the declaration, "They are not hid from my face," that the people in question were hid from others. Else, why should the Lord say that they were not hid from him?

"If they were not hid from the Lord, who were they hid from?"

We answer --THE HUNTERS.

(11) The nineteenth verse relates to Gentiles who shall come unto the Lord, from the ends of the earth. The Hebrew word (Goy) which is here translated Gentiles, is often translated, nations, people, tribes, and, far away people. God had told Israel that he would cast them afar off, and in Jer. 1:10 this same Hebrew word is translated nations. In Jer. 31:9, while speaking to Joseph-Ephraim-Samaria-Israel, the Lord says: "I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my first-born. Hear the word of the Lord, O ye na­tions [Goy], and declare it in the isles afar off, and say, He that scattered Israel will gather him."

(12) And in this prophecy which we are consider­ing, we are told that these nations shall yet come "from the ends of the earth," and say: "Surely our fathers have inherited lies." How so?

Do not forget, Hosea has prophesied concerning the same people, saying that in the place where it shall be said unto them, "Ye are Lo-ammi, or not the people of God," there it shall be said unto them "Ammi," or "Ye are the sons of the living God." These people shall return to their home and to their Lord, who will be there about the time they get there. And they shall say: "We have inherited lies, for we have been told that we were not the seed of Abraham, but now we know that we, too, have Abraham as our father."

(13) Then, saith the Lord, "I will cause them to know mine hand, and my might; and they shall know that my name is the Lord, i.e., Jehovah.

So we find that while Israel was taken into Assyria they were not to stay there, but were to wander into an unknown country, called the wilderness; and that eventually, when they have fulfilled their destiny by be­coming "many nations," the head of the nations is in the isles of the sea, and that the Lord is to gather them from there. So it is evident that the school of teachers, who say that Israel returned with Judah from Babylon, do not know where the Birthright kingdom is, thus making it quite clear that they are lost even to those who say that there is no lost Israel.

The above facts are in harmony with still other au­thentic history as contained in the apocryphal book of Ezra, i.e., Esdras. Mind you, we do not assert that this book is inspired, although there are thousands who, with ourselves, believe it is. But we give it simply as corrob­orative history. Esdras had seen a vision in which there were two companies, one a warlike and the other a peaceful company. The declared explanation of the peaceful company is as follows: "Whereas thou sawest that he gathered another peaceful company, those are the ten tribes, which were carried away prisoners out of their own land in the time of Hosea, the king whom Shalmanesar, the king of Assyria, led away captive; and he carried them away so they came into another land. But they took counsel among themselves, that they would leave the multitude of the heathen, and go forth into a further country, where never mankind dwell, that they might keep their statutes, which they never kept in their own land. And they entered into Eu­phrates by the narrow passage (the gate) of the river. For the Most High then showed signs for them, and held still the flood till they were passed over, for through that country there was a great way to go, namely, a year and a half. And the same region is called Asaareth (Margin: Ararath, same as Ararat or Armenia, which are only different forms of the same word). Then they dwelt there until the latter time; and now when they shall begin to come, the Highest shall stay the springs of the streams again, that they may go through: therefore sawest thou the multitude with peace," (2 Esdras 13:39-47).

Every statement made in this extract is corroborated by unquestioned canonical writings, as we have shown, except one; and Isaiah settles that one as follows: "The Lord shall utterly destroy the tongue of the Egyptian sea; and with his mighty wind shall he shake his hand over the river, and shall smite it in the seven streams, and make men go over dry shod. And there shall be an highway for the remnant of his people which shall be left from Assyria -- like as it was in the day that he came up out of the land of Egypt," (Isa. 11:15, 16).

Mind you, he does not say that they shall come from Assyria; he is speaking of the remnant of his people which are left from Assyria, i.e., the Assyrian cap­tivity. The tongue of the Egyptian sea is not en route from either Babylon or Assyria. The tongue of the Egyptian sea is a tongue of the Red sea, and the river with seven streams, mouths, or delta, is the river Nile, which waters Egypt; and these are in a direction from Palestine which is diametrically opposite to that of Assyria and Babylon.

After all, it is not so much a question of the lost ten tribes, for some out of all the tribes returned to the kingdom of Judab, in the days of Rehoboam, the first king of Judah. This is no doubt the reason that the Jews, upon their return from Babylon, offered the twelve bullocks for all Israel, as a burnt offering unto the Lord. But it is a question of the lost house of Joseph, that is, THE LOST BIRTHRIGHT. The Jews, although denationalized and scattered every­where, have never been lost; but, as foretold, they have always been so "well known" that they have become a "by-word"; consequently, they have never been hunt­ed for. But there is a prophecy in the Psalms con­cerning a people by the name of Israel, who are spoken of as the hidden people of the Lord, and whom he is called upon to defend from their enemies. Of these it is declared: "They have taken crafty counsel against thy people and consulted against THY HIDDEN ONES. They have said, come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name ISRAEL may be no more in remembrance," (Psa. 83:3, 4).

Hence, there is a people who bear the name of Israel, which, as we have learned, is the name of the birth­right nation, which if it is not now hid, has in the past been hid from all except the Omnipotent One.

Sha Sha
pokerhead
Posts: 10

THE SCEPTRE;OR, THE PROMISE OF A PERPETUATED HOUSE,

Post#12 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 3:07 am

Part 2




THE SCEPTRE;

OR, THE PROMISE OF A PERPETUATED HOUSE,

THRONE, AND KINGDOM TO DAVID



"OUGHT ye not to know that the Lord God of Israel gave the kingdom over Israel to David for ever, even to him and to his sons by a covenant if salt?"



CHAPTER I

THE SCEPTRE, AND THE DAVIDIC COVENANT



There is no question, with those who have fol­lowed us thus far, that the Birthright people have been cast out into an unknown and far-away country, which, when they entered, was an uninhabited and unex­plored wilderness. While Israel has been exploring, pioneering and settling this wilderness, the Lord has so hedged up their way that they can find neither the paths by which they came nor the place from whence they came.

Although lost, in so far as their national identity is concerned, they are in the place where the Lord has said they shall find grace, and where he has promised to speak comforting words to their hearts -- in the wil­derness.

There we will leave them to fulfill their appointed destiny of becoming a multitude of nations, while we follow the history of the Scepter, and learn what the Word of the Lord has revealed concerning his present and its future. For, if God has been true to his word, and unless the faith of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob has become of no effect, then the Scepter, as well as the Birthright, has not only a present existence, but a glorious future.

When God made the covenant with Abram in which he made him (prospectively) the father of many na­tions, thereby changing his name to Abraham, he gave the promise, "Kings shall come out of thee." Also, when the promise concerning the multiplicity of na­tions was reiterated to his wife, whose former name was Sarai, but now Sarah, or princess, it was said, "Kings of nations shall be of her" (R. V.). Thus by the choice or election of God were they made, not only the progenitors of a race which was to develop into "many nations," which were to spread abroad to the North, South, East and West, but also a royal family. This, of course, includes a Sceptre -- the emblem and sign of royalty.

These promised blessings, given by the Lord and confirmed to Abraham by an oath, were received by him in faith, and counted as though they were already in existence, for the simple reason that, when a thing is promised by the Lord and received by any one in faith, that thing must eventually materialize, because faith is the God-given force or power which will and must eventually bring promised things into existence. Hence both "the Birthright" and "the Sceptre" blessing passed from Abraham to Isaac as a real inheritance; while he in turn bestowed them upon Jacob, who so much desired them and considered them so surely to exist already that he was willing to strike bargains for them, or even resort to fraudulent measures to get possession of them.

At the death of Jacob these two covenant blessings -- the Birthright and the Sceptre -- were separated, the Birthright falling to one of his sons and the Sceptre to another one of them, as we have heretofore fully ex­plained. When Jacob, at the time of his death, while acting under the direction of the Holy Spirit, gave the Sceptre blessing to Judah and his lineage, the prophecy which he gave with it was, "The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gather­ing of the people be," (Gen. 49:10).

After the Abrahamic people had cried down the Divine Theocracy, rejected the Lord as their king, and insisted on having a human king, they chose Saul. Al­though Saul was not of the royal line, but a Ben­jamite, he was permitted to reign, for the Lord had determined to give the people the desire of their hearts. But after the downfall of that haughty Benjamite, David, a son of the royal family, was enthroned, and to him were reiterated the promises concerning the royal family, which had been emphasized to Judah by his dying father when he bestowed on him the cove­nant blessing of royal fatherhood.

When the Sceptre covenant was confirmed to David, the Lord gave the message through Nathan the prophet in these words: "When thy days be fufilIed, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men. But my mercy shall not depart from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away before thee. And thy house and thy king­dom shall be established forever before thee: Thy throne shall be established forever," (2 Sam. 7:12-16).

David was so impressed with the magnitude of this prophecy and with the period of time which it covered that he went in and sat before the Lord, pondering over it, until in wonderment he exclaimed: "Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my house that thou hast brought me hitherto? And this was yet a small thing in thy sight, O Lord God [i.e., the present power, glory and prestige of David's house, throne and king­dom]: but thou hast spoken also of thy servant's house for a great while to come. And is this the manner of man, O Lord God?" (2 Sam. 7:18,19). No. It is not the manner of man to prophesy concerning things "for a great while to come." But it is the manner of God. Yes, and it is the manner of God to make good that which he has spoken. David understood this; so he prayed, "And now, O Lord God, the word that thou hast spoken concerning thy servant, and concern­ing his house, establish it forever, and do as thou hast said."

If it be possible that there can be such power put into written words as shall yet come from that voice which shall sound the seven thunders, we pray that it may be put into those which record the above facts; and thus compel our readers to see that it is not the spiritual throne, the spiritual sceptre, the spiritual house, nor the heavenly kingdom, which are therein spoken of, but that it is the literal throne, the earthly kingdom, and the lineal house of the Judo-Davidic family which are the subjects of this prophecy; and that all these are to endure FOREVER.

There is also in this prophecy a note of warning to David's successor, which is given in the following: "If he commit iniquity I will chasten him with the rod of men." It is not at all presumable that the ruler, sitting on the spiritual throne, and holding the sceptre over the heavenly kingdom, would commit iniquity; hence no such a threat could have been given with ref­erence to him. But when it is applied to Solomon, the immediate successor of his father David, and to others of the royal line, it is altogether another question, for many of them were as wicked as men ever get to be.

Further, this prophecy was to go into effect when David's "days were fulfilled," and when the son who should be set up after him would build a house for God. Solomon, who was "set up" after David, did build a house to the Lord, viz., the temple at Jerusalem. But the Messiah has never, as yet, built any such house. Before the temple was built, and when Solo­mon was giving orders to Hiram concerning the ma­terial for its construction, he said: "Behold, I purpose to build an house unto the name of the Lord my God, as the Lord spake unto David my father, saying, Thy son whom I will set upon thy throne in thy room he shall build an house unto my name," (I Kings 5:5).

Also, when the temple was finished, Solomon, stand­ing before the altar of the Lord, in the presence of all the congregation of Israel, and with uplifted hands spread toward heaven, in that wonderful prayer at the dedication of the temple, said: "The Lord hath performed his word that he spake; and I am risen up in the room of David my father, and sit on the throne of Israel, as the Lord promised, and have built an house for the name of the Lord God of Israel. . . . There is no God like thee, in heaven above, or on earth beneath, who keepest covenant and mercy with thy servant . . . who hast kept with thy servant David my father that which thou promisest him; thou speak­est also with thy mouth, and hast fulfilled it with thine hand, as it is this day. Therefore now, Lord God of Israel, keep with thy servant David my father that thou promisedst him, saying: There shall not fail thee a man in my sight to sit on the throne of Israel," (I Kings 8:20-25).

By this prayer we see that Solomon understood that the throne, the kingdom, and the lineal house of David should stand forever.

Solomon not only understood it this way, but de­clared it before all the congregation of Israel, so that the entire nation should be fully aware of the fact. This was so thoroughly known in Israel and acknowl­edged by her prophets that, at the time of the division of the race into two kingdoms in the days of Reho­boam and Jeroboam, Abijah, in his zeal that the lineal rights of the royal family might not be ignored, stood upon a mountain in Ephraim and cried out: "Hear me, thou Jeroboam and all Israel. Ought ye not to know that the Lord God of Israel gave the kingdom over Israel to David forever and to his sons [not son, not one, but many] by a covenant of salt?" (13:5). The marginal reading is, "a perpetual covenant."

The eighty-ninth Psalm contains much light re­garding the covenant under consideration, which the Lord made with David and his sons, concerning the perpetuity of his throne, scepter, kingdom, and his posterity. In it the Lord declares: "I have made a covenant with my chosen, I have sworn unto David my servant, saying, Thy seed will I establish forever, and build up thy throne to all generations." Not a few, not some, not even many, but "ALL generations."

Continuing, he says: "My mercy will I keep for him forevermore, and my covenant shall stand fast with him. His seed also will I make to endure forever, and his throne as the days of heaven. If his children for­sake my law, and walk not in my judgments; if they break my statutes, and keep not my commandments: then will I visit their transgressions with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes. Nevertheless, my loving kindness will I not utterly take from him nor suffer my faithfulness to fail. My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that has gone out of my lips."

Surely it is not possible to break the force of these words. The proposition could not be stated in stronger terms. The Lord simply will not break his covenant; he will not change, nor modify, nor in any way or for any reason alter, the thing that he has spoken, even if the children of David do forsake his law and break every commandment in his statute book. If they do break his law, he will chastise and punish with "the rod" and "with stripes," but he will not suffer his faithfulness to fail.

The covenant is unconditional. It "shall stand fast," no matter how often they are visited with rod and stripe for their transgressions. No matter how severe the punishment, the fact remains that the throne, the sceptre, the kingdom and the seed, must endure for­evermore.

The fact that in this confirmation of the Davidic covenant the Lord uses the expressions, "his children," "they" and "their," all in the plural form, is proof that this covenant does not have reference to the spir­itual reign of his son Jesus Christ in the hearts of Christians. Furthermore, it could not be possible that Jesus Christ, he of whom the prophet Isaiah wrote saying, "Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given." whose "name shall be called Wonderful, Coun­sellor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace," we say it is not possible for this Prince of Peace, who is The Mighty God, to break his own commandments, forsake his own law, or disre­gard his own statutes, and then punish himself for his own wickedness. No, these warnings do not apply to the Immortal One, but to the frail mortal sons of David, of whom Solomon was the first, and whom the Lord punished for his wickedness, as we may learn by referring to the eleventh chapter of I Kings, where we read as follows: "And the Lord was angry with Solomon, because his heart was turned from the Lord God of Israel, which had appeared unto him twice, and had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods, but he kept not that which the Lord commanded. Wherefore the Lord said unto Solomon: Forasmuch as this is done of thee, and thou hast not kept my covenant and my statutes, which I have commanded thee, I will surely rend the king­dom from thee, and I will give unto thy servant. Not­withstanding, in thy days I will not do it, for David thy father's sake; but will rend it out of the hand of thy son. Howbeit, I will not rend away all the kingdom; but will give one tribe to thy son for David my servant's sake," (I Kings 11:9-13).

Please notice how perfectly the facts agree, in every detail, with the declared purpose of God. Solomon, the seed of David, who was set up after him, who sat on the throne in the room of his father, who built and dedicated the house of the Lord, did forsake his God and refuse to obey his commandments. If God is true to his word, he must punish any of the children of David who thus forsake his law. So, as a punish­ment to Solomon, he purposes to take the greatness and power of the kingdom away from that son, who, as Solomon hopes, shall inherit the throne, crown, sceptre and kingdom, in all its glory. But no; the Lord purposes to take away the greater part of the national strength and power of the kingdom and give it to one of the servants of Solomon instead of the royal heir.

But while the Lord is declaring unto Solomon the punishment which he purposes to visit upon him for his disobedience, he is careful to say: "Howbeit, I will not rend away all the kingdom; but will give one tribe to thy son.”

Why not "rend away all the kingdom?"

The Divine reply is, "For David my servant's sake."

Why for David's sake?

Because the Lord gave the "kingdom over Israel to David and his sons forever."

Ah, he dare not take away the entire kingdom from that royal line! Yes, we can say "dare not," and em­phasize it, too. And we may also add, must not cannot, or any and all such expressions as will voice our protest or express the impossibility of such a thing. Indeed, the Lord himself has uttered a stronger protest than ours could ever be. We say this because the Lord, in this Psalm which we have under consid­eration, after saying, "My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips," has, in the very next statement, made use of words which forever shut the door of retreat; for he not only took an oath, in which he pledged his own holy character, but he brought the physical universe into the contract, or at least that portion of it which involves the continued existence of the present arrangement of our solar sys­tem. His declarations are "Once have I sworn, by my holiness, that I will not lie unto David. His seed shall endure forever, and his throne as the sun before me. It shall be estabished forever as the moon, and as a faithful witness in the heaven," (Psa. 89:35-37). Also, in the twenty-ninth verse of that same Psalm is the following: “His seed also will I make to endure forever, and his throne as the days of heaven."

If we are willing to give these words their full and natural meaning, then surely we must see clearly that it is the intention of the Lord that we shall understand that, so long as the sun, the "great light" which he created for a light by day, and the moon the "lesser light," which he created to rule the night, shall keep their appointed places in the heavens, traveling their orbits, continuing to make their proper changes, pass­ing through their ecliptics, or completing their luna­tions, just so long must they rise over, shine down upon, and set beyond, the limits of, a kingdom on this earth over which some member of the Judo-Davidic family is holding the sceptre. Just so long will they continue to say, by their very presence in the heavens.

"We are witnesses unto men throughout all generations, that the Lord God of Israel has not lied into his servant David."

Furthermore, it is certain that the expressions, "days of heaven," and "a faithful witness in heaven," as used in these Scriptures, are purely astronomic, and refer to the stellar and atmospheric heavens. Hence the throne, kingdom, sceptre and family of David must endure, "as the days of heaven," i.e., so long as the earth continues to revolve on its own axis, thus giving to itself that diurnal motion which causes day and night to succeed each other, and which enables the sun and moon to perform their functions of lighting the day and night.

"But," says one, "do not these sayings apply to the kingdom and throne in heaven, where Christ, the seed of David, is now sitting at the right hand of God? And is not the New Jerusalem, which is above, and is the mother of us all, the celestial capital of that kingdom?" To this we are compelled to give a nega­tive answer; for that celestial city has "no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it; for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof," (Rev. 21:23.)

“But," questions another persistent spiritualizer, "do not the seed and throne mentioned in these Scriptures refer to Christ, who is the 'Son of David,' in his spir­itual kingdom, which is set up in the hearts of men?" Again we are compelled to reply in the negative, for the Holy Ghost is the divine illuminator of that king­dom; the sun and the moon having never been heavenly lights, only in an astronomic sense.

Furthermore, a mere glance at the context will reveal the fact that the Lord is dealing with a very earth­ly seed and kingdom; for, intermingled with the prom­ises of an everlasting seed, throne and kingdom, the declaration is made concerning the children of David that, if they do not walk in his judgments and keep his commandments, but forsake his law, and break his statutes, then he will visit their transgressions with the rod and their iniquity with stripes. But still, no matter how wicked the ruler on the throne or the subject in the realm, he will not suffer his faithfulness to fail, his covenant with David must stand for­evermore.

The only conditions to the covenant are such as are entirely beyond the power of man either to control or to break, viz., the faithfulness of God in keeping and fulfilling his word, the holiness of his character -- for he cannot lie -- and the omnipotence of his power to keep the sun, moon and the earth rolling onward in their present cycles and order until, by the good pleas­ure of his will, he shall change those ordinances and bring into existence the new heavens and the new earth. Hence, the Holy Ghost has inspired Jeremiah to write: "Thus saith the Lord: If ye can break my covenant of the day, and my covenant of the night, and that there should not be day and night in their season; then may also my covenant be broken with my servant, that he should not have a son to reign upon his throne," (Jer. 33:20, 21).

Previously, in this same chapter, and in the seven­teenth verse, the Lord has said: "David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel." Then he adds the following: “If my cove­nant be not with day and night, and if I have not ap­pointed the ordinance of heaven and earth, then will I cast away the seed of Jacob, and David my servant, so that I will not take any of his seed to be rulers over the seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob." This, too, after saying: As the host of heaven cannot be numbered, neither the sand of the sea measured: so will I multiply the seed of David my servant," (Jer. 33:22, 25, 26).

In the statement, "David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne," the word man is translated from the Hebrew "ish" (iysh), which is defined as mean­ing "a man, a person, a certain one, any one."

In the declaration that David should always "have a son to reign upon his throne," the Hebrew word from which "son" is taken is "Ben," which means "son, man, or a builder of the family name.

In the other expression, "take any of his seed to be rulers," etc., the word "seed" is taken from the He­brew "Zara" -- "a man, a person, a child, a nephew, a grandchild, or relative."

This being the case -- together with the fact that when duration of time is being considered, there are no stronger words in the Hebrew language than those which are translated "forever," "evermore," and "ever­lasting," then these following propositions must stand:

(1) The Lord God of Israel made a covenant with David concerning the perpetuity of his seed, throne, and kingdom, regardless of the good or evil conduct of his descendants.

(2) The subjects of this Davidic kingdom must belong to the lineage of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

(3) Some person of the lineage of King David must be on that throne (seat of power) who holds the sceptre, and reigns over that kingdom.

(4) National afflictions will come upon them, as punishment for their unrighteousness; but they will not be utterly destroyed; for the kingdom must endure so long as there be day and night, and the subjects must continue to increase until they become innu­merable.

(5) So long as the sun, moon and earth continue rolling onward in their appointed orbits, just so long must the seed, throne, and Israelitish kingdom of David be in existence, or we have no longer a holy God ruling in the heavens and watching over Israel.

(6) In order to prove that God has become unholy -- i.e., lied -- some man must yet find a fulcrum on which to rest his lever with which he can stop the rotation of the earth, and then find some way by which he can drive those witnessing lights from the sky; or in some way break up the appointed ordinances of heaven and earth, so that there cannot be day and night in their season. Otherwise, the holiness and omnipotence of God must not be questioned. This is the reason that David so triumphantly says to him: "Thou hast mag­nified thy word above all thy name," (Psa. 138:2).

(7) The fact that God has thus magnified his word above his name would, in case of a failure on his part to perpetuate that which he swears shall be in exis­tence forever, give us authority to impeach his testi­mony on every line, for it would undeify him.

Sha Sha
pokerhead
Posts: 10

JEREMIAH'S CALL AND COMMISSION

Post#13 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 3:08 am

JEREMIAH'S CALL AND COMMISSION

Having settled the question concerning the per­petuity of the covenant which God made with "David and his sons," together with the fact that he has given, as a pledge of their everlastingness, not only the astronomic order of producing day and night, months, years and seasons, but the very holiness of his char­acter as well, we must now proceed to take up the thread of history which pertains to that sceptre, throne, kingdom and royal seed whose continued existence is balanced over against such weighty considerations as the power, integrity and immutability of the character and Word of God.

While dealing with the history of the Birthright and its inheritors, the house of Joseph, we had, of necessity, much to say concerning the history of the Sceptre and the royal family, its inheritors. Especially was this true when we contrasted that system of feudalism and continual overthrowing of dynasties which prevailed in the kingdom of Israel as compared with the one con­tinuous dynasty and succession of the royal princes of the Judo-Davidic family, as they mounted the throne of their fathers and held the sceptre over the kingdom of Judah.

In order to have our historic thread complete we must resume our history of the Sceptre at the call of Jeremiah the prophet, which occurred at a period prior to the time when the Jews were taken into the Baby­lonish captivity, but subsequent to the time when Is­rael, the Birthright kingdom, was taken into captivity by Shalmanesar, king of Assyria, and deported into the country of the headwaters of the Euphrates, the country more generally known as Medo-Persia.

It is certain that we can never understand the history of this covenanted throne, kingdom and family, and the fact that they have been thus far built up "unto all generations," unless we understand the his­tory and accept with unfaltering faith the call and commission of Jeremiah the prophet, in relation to those things which God has given his pledge shall endure forever. For if to be taught the distinction between the two houses, and to understand the differ­ence between the kingdoms of Israel and Judah, may be likened unto the key which unlocks the outer sanc­tuary of our understanding of sacred history, then surely a knowledge of the life and work of Jeremiah, the son of Hilkiah, is the key which the Holy Spirit can use to open that inner sanctuary, or Holy of Holies, of our understanding in these matters upon which rest the vindication of God.

According to the Divine record, there have lived in this world only three men who were sanctified before they were born. The first was this same Jeremiah, who, in one of the darkest hours in all the history of the Abrahamic nations which pertains to them as a whole, was made the custodian of the sceptre, throne and royal seed of David. The next was John the Bap­tist, the forerunner and herald of the coming Prince of the House of David. Then came the last and greatest of all -- our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, the Son of David, that Prince of whom the angel declared unto Mary at the time of the annunciation: "The Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David," (Luke 1:32). When this blessed Prince takes his seat he will be the last King to sit on that throne, or any other on this earth.

In the days of Josiah, the son of Amon, king of Judah, in the thirteenth year of his reign, while Jere­miah was still a minor, a mere youth, only seventeen years of age, he received his call as the "Prophet unto the nations," and was given his commission, the de­tails of which he himself has given in the first chapter of his own prophecies, as follows:

"Then the word of God came unto me, saying: Be­fore I formed thee in the belly I knew thee -- before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.

"Then said I: Ah, Lord God! behold, I cannot speak, for I am a child.

"But the Lord said unto me: Say not, I am a child, for thou shalt go to all that I shall send thee, and what­soever I shall command thee thou shalt speak. Be not afraid of their faces; for I am with thee to deliver thee, saith the Lord.

"Then the Lord put forth his hand and touched my mouth. And the Lord said unto me: Behold, I have put my words into thy mouth. See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to build and to plant," (Jer. 1:4-10).

Called as the prophet of God; the words of the Lord put into his mouth with a touch from the Divine hand; and set by the Divine One "over the nations, and over the kingdoms." What! Surely he was not set over all the nations, neither all the kingdoms of the earth? No, there is nothing said about all nations; just simply and definitely -- "the nations" and "the kingdoms." So far as the word which is translated "nations" in the text is concerned, it is the same word that is used when the Lord said to Abraham, "I have made the father of many nations; and when he said to Rebekah, "Two nations are in thy womb." He now calls Jere­miah a "Prophet unto the nations," i.e., the "two na­tions," the "two kingdoms," the two houses -- Israel and Judah; the "two families," the inheritors of the Birthright and of the Sceptre. It is to these nations, not to all the nations of the earth, that the Lord sends Jeremiah, his prophet, with a commission to root out, tear down, and destroy, on the one hand; but -- hear it! -- he was also Divinely commissioned to "BUILD AND PLANT"!

The fact that Jeremiah was commissioned to over­throw the commonwealth of Judah, destroy the Davidic kingdom, as it then existed among the Jewish people, throw down the throne of David which was in their midst, and root out that branch of the royal family which occupied the throne at that time -- all this is so clear, so well known, that most, if not all, of the ac­cepted authorities of Christendom proclaim it. But those same authorities do not seem to know, neither do they proclaim that which follows as a natural sequence, i.e., that if it was the kingdom, sceptre, throne and seed of David which were to be overthrown, then it follows that it is those very same things which must again be planted and builded.

Hence we affirm that, as God is still holy, and did not lie to David, and if he did not sanctify, call, and com­mission Jeremiah in vain, then that throne of David was again set up, the seed planted, and the kingdom builded before Jeremiah died.

Mind you, we do not say that these were planted and builded among the Jews. That was not at all necessary in order to fulfillment. Indeed, we will show that it was not planted nor builded in Judah. For God "gave the kingdom over Israel to David forever, even to him and his sons by a covenant of salt." Nine-twelfths of the seed of Israel never were members of the Jewish kingdom.

The great wrong of which the standard authorities of Christendom have been guilty is that, with a wide-open Bible before them, they should be in such igno­rance of the declared purpose of God, and have such a hesitating, apologetic faithlessness in his covenant promises -- wherein he has sworn by himself -- that they are blinded even to the necessity of accounting for the building and planting which God gave Jere­miah to do.

The great fault with their whole teaching, so far as the outcome of Jeremiah's work is concerned, is that they have either suffered, implied, or actually taught that the promises of God to David were allowed to go by default. And when an honest questioner would arise, as of necessity there must, he at once be­comes an irresponsible, irregular, unarmored stripling, upon whom these regulars in the army of Israel insist on putting the armor of Saul. But the "heavy" armor of the should-be leader will not fit the bright young head and freer limbs of the little irregular; so he must go forth alone to slay the giant of infidelity, whose champions have been defying the armies of the living God. Meanwhile, these "regulars" stand on the hill of their self-importance and ask, "Who is this youth­ful stripling whom we see down in the valley picking up pebbles with which to meet the foe whose challenge has sent dismay among us for lo these many days?"

Sha Sha
pokerhead
Posts: 10

THE TEARING DOWN AND ROOTING OUT

Post#14 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 3:10 am

THE TEARING DOWN AND ROOTING OUT

Pursuant to the object of Jeremiah's call and work, the first king on David's throne to be disposed of was Josiah, for it was in the thirteenth year of his reign that the call of God came to Jeremiah, as you may know by reading Jer. 1:1, 2. Jeremiah himself gives no account of the downfall of Josiah, but it is recorded in 2 Kings 23, and 2 Chr. thirty-fifth chapter. It took place in the days of Pharaoh-Necho, king of Egypt, and Charchemish, king of Assyria.

Josiah himself was a good man and a good king; he did all that could be done to restore the people to the worship of God. He had all the wizards, workers with familiar spirits, images, idols and abominations put out of the land; but the Lord would not stay his threatened punishment of the kingdom of Judea, which had become "worse" than Israel.

Concerning the goodness of Josiah, and also his ina­bility to prevent the impending calamity, it is written:

"And like unto him was no king before him, that turned to the Lord with all his heart, and all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the law of Moses; neither after him arose any like him. Not­withstanding, the Lord turned not from the fierceness of his great wrath, wherewith his anger was kindled against Judah, because of all the provocations that Manasseh [son of Hezekiah] had provoked him withal. And the Lord said, I will remove Judah [the Jews] out of my sight, as I have removed Israel [the ten tribes]," (2 Kings, 23:25-27).

Not only was Josiah the best king they ever had, and not only did he put away those abominations, but he also kept the greatest Passover that was ever held in Israel or Judah since the days of Samuel the prophet. To this Passover that good king gave thirty-three thousand and three hundred cattle and oxen, and to this the princes and people gave willingly of their flocks and herds, until the number was swelled to many thousand more.

The sons of Aaron made themselves ready; the peo­ple made themselves ready; the sacrifices were killed; the blood sprinkled; the offerings were burned upon the altar of the Lord, and the people kept the feast of unleavened bread for seven days. But all this availed nothing, except a personal blessing to Josiah, that he should die in peace and not see the destruction of Jeru­salem and the captivity of the people.

No, the eternal fiat of God had gone forth, and we think that no number of worshipers, no number of good kings, or good men, and surely no mighty army of bad men, could stay the downfall of that nation.

For the Lord says, "After all this," when Pharaoh ­Necho, the king of Egypt, came up to fight against Charchemish, king of Assyria, Josiah rashly, without provocation, made it his business and went out to fight against the king of Egypt, who kindly tried to restrain him, and sent ambassadors to him saying: "What have I to do with thee, thou king of Judah? I come not against thee this day, but against the house [Assy­ria] wherewith I have war; for God commanded me to make haste: forbear thee from meddling with God, who is with me, that he destroy thee not." And the record continues: "Nevertheless, Josiah would not turn his face from him, but disguised himself, that he might fight with him and harkened not unto the word of Necho from the mouth of God, and came to fight in the valley of Megiddo. And the archers shot at King Josiah; and the king said to his servants, Have me away, for I am sore wounded. His servants there­fore took him out of that chariot, and put him in the second chariot that he had, and brought him to Jeru­salem, and he died, and was buried in one of the sepulchres of his fathers. And all Judah and Jerusa­lem mourned for Josiah. And Jeremiah lamented for Josiah," (2 Chr. 35:21-25).

So Jeremiah saw that good king pulled down, and lamented him, together with the whole nation; and the singing men and women made an ordinance of lamen­tations for Josiah, and Shallum the son of Josiah ascended the throne. But the Lord had said, "I swear by myself" that this house of Judah shall come to desalation. So he says to this lamenting people: "Weep not for the dead, neither bemoan him: but weep sore for him that goeth away: for he shall return no more, nor see his native country. For thus saith the Lord touching Shallum, the son of Josiah, which reigned instead of Josiah, his father, which went out of this place, he shall not return any more: but he shall die in the place whither they have led him captive, and shall see this land no more," (Jer. 22:10-12). Thus Jeremiah records the fact of another overthrow; and so the work goes on.

Jehoiakim, another son of Josiah, was next to take the throne of his fathers; but hear the judgment which was pronounced upon him: "Therefore thus saith the Lord concerning Johoiakim, the son of Josiah, king of Judah: They shall not lament for him saying (to each other), Ah, my brother! or, my Ah, my sister! They shall not lament for him, saying, Ah, Lord! or, Ah, his glory! He shall be buried with the burial of an ass, drawn and cast forth beyond the gates of Jeru­salem," (Jer. 22:18, 19.) Another disposed of. Who next?

"As I live, saith the Lord, though Coniah, the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, were the signet upon my right hand, yet would I pluck thee thence; and I will give thee into the hand of them that seek thy life, and into the hand of them whose faces thou fearest, even into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and into the hands of the Chaldeans. And I will cast thee out, and thy mother that bare thee, into another country, where ye were not born, and there shall ye die. But unto the land whereunto they desire to re­turn thither shall they not return."

"Is this man Coniah a despised broken idol? Is he a vessel wherein is no pleasure? Wherefore are they cast out, he and his seed, and are cast into a land which they know not? O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the Lord. Thus saith the Lord: Write ye this man childless, a man that shall not prosper in his days; for no man of his seed shall prosper, sitting upon the throne of David, and ruling any more in Judah," (Jer. 22:24-30).

Thus Coniah makes the fourth king who has been disposed of since the Lord called and commissioned Jeremiah; but there is still another, as recorded by that prophet: "And King Zedekiah, the son of Josiah, reigned instead of Coniah, the son of Jehoiakiah," (Jer. 37:1).

Zedekiah, the successor to Coniah, ascended the throne about six hundred years before Christ. His reign lasted only eleven years, and he is the last king of the Judo-Davidic line who has reigned over the Jew­ish nation from that day to this. Yet God has said that he would build up David's throne unto all generations, and prior to that he declared: "The Sceptre shall not depart from Judah [his posterity], nor a law-giver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him [Shiloh] shall the gathering of the people be," (Gen. 49:10). With these facts before us it behooves us to look well into this history of Zedekiah, and learn his fate and also that of his family.

During the reign of Coniah, the predecessor of Zede­kiah, the king of Babylon had come against the kingdom of Judah, subdued it and carried away the king, his mother, his wives, and others, into Babylon. Conse­quently at the time when Zedekiah ascended the throne, the country of Judah was a province of Babylon. But the then tolerant Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, took Mathaniah, the third son of Josiah, who was of course brother to Jehoiakim, Coniah's father, and changed his name to Zedekiah, then made him king instead of Coniah.

We do not purpose, especially at this time, to go into endless genealogies, as it is generally confusing to the reader. In this Josiah family there were at least two Zedekiahs, and Zedekiahs along the family line for centuries back. There were also Shallums, and Shallums, and Shallums, and even Coniah's name is spelled three different ways. We will also say, for the benefit of the more critical student, that often a man is said to be the son of another when in fact he is grandson or even further removed. Christ is the "Son of David," and yet David is his great-grandfather twenty-eight generations back. "From David until the carrying away into Babylon are fourteen generations, and from the carrying away into Babylon unto Christ are four­teen generations," (Matt. 1:17).

This Zedekiah of whom we write is the third son of Josiah, for we read, "And the king of Babylon made Mattaniah, his (Coniah's) father's brother, king in his stead, and changed his name to Zedekiah."

"Zedekiah was twenty-and-one years old when he began to reign, and he reigned eleven years in Jerusa­lem. And his mother's name was Hamutal, the daugh­ter of Jeremiah of Libnah," (2 Kings 24:17-19). Thus we find Jeremiah making the following record con­cerning Coniah's successor: "And King Zedekiah, the son of Josiah, reigned instead of Coniah, the son of Jehoiakim, whom Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, made king in the land of Judah," (Jer. 37:1). Hence this young king, the fifth to occupy the throne of David, since Jeremiah had received his commission, was his own grandson.

The work of rooting out and tearing down has been well done so far, and we may rest assured that, al­though the prophet's own flesh and blood are on the throne and dwelling in the palace, the God-assigned work will not stop. But if there should be any very young or helpless members of that family survive the wreck which must come during the tearing down and rooting out period, who would have a greater claim as their natural protector than one so closely allied by the ties of blood as this very man whom God has chosen for the work of building and planting, as well as of tearing down and rooting out?

Jeremiah records the downfall of Zedekiah and his sons, the royal princes, as follows: "In the ninth year of Zedekiah, king of Judah, in the tenth month, came Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, and all his army against Jerusalem, and they besieged it. And in the eleventh year of Zedekiah, in the fourth month, and the ninth day of the month, the city was broken up. And all the princes of the king of Babylon came in, and sat in the middle gate, even Nergal-sharezar, Samgar-­Nebo, Sarsechim, Rabsaris, Rabmag, with all the resi­due of the princes of the king of Babylon.

"And it came to pass, that when Zedekiah, the king of Judah, saw them, and all the men of war, then they fled, and went forth out of the city by night, by the way of the king's garden, by the gate betwixt the two walls; and he went out the way of the plain. But the Chal­deans' army pursued after them, and overtook Zede­kiah in the plains of Jericho; and when they had taken him, they brought him up to Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, to Riblah, in the land of Hamath, where he gave judgment upon him. Then the king of BabyIon slew the sons of Zedekiah in Riblah before his eyes; also the king of Babylon slew all the nobles of Judah. Moreover he put out Zedekiah's eyes, and bound him in chains, to carry him to Babylon. And the Chaldeans burned the king's house, and the houses of the people, with fire, and brake down the walls of Je­rusalem,” (Jer. 39:1-8).

In the fifty-second chapter of Jeremiah there is a statement of these events, to which, after recording the fact concerning the king's being carried to Babylon in chains, there is added the following: "And the king of Babylon . . . put him in prison till the day of his death," (Jer. 52:11).

Thus ends the history of the last prince of the house of David who has ever reigned over the Jewish people from that time until the present; and we know that they are not now, as a nation, being ruled over by any prince of their royal family; for they are scattered among all the nations of the earth, and are now fulfill­ing, not the prophecies concerning their ultimate and most glorious destiny, but a class of prophecies which pertain to this period, or time, of being scattered, which are those of becoming "a hiss and a byword," "crying for sorrow of heart and vexation of spirit," and leaving "their name for a curse." When those events occurred which resulted in the overthrow of the Zedekiah branch of the royal house, a climax was reached, not only in the history of all those things which were involved in the Davidic covenant, but also in that predestined work, for the accomplishment of which God sanctified and sent Jeremiah into this world.

By this climax, the first part of his mission, in all its phases, was now most thoroughly accomplished -- name­ly, the plucking up, throwing down, afflicting. Indeed, it was so well done, that the heretofore accepted au­thorities in theologic, historic and ethnologic matters have taught that the sceptre, throne and kingdom of David were wiped out of existence, together with the house of David, excepting only another branch of the family of Josiah, who were carried away into the Baby­lonish captivity, of whom came Christ, the son of David, who, according to the Scripture, must yet sit upon the throne of his father David. We will give but one example of that class of sophistical reasoning which has led the mind of the Christian world into this gross error.

Take, for instance, the well-known and much-used Polyglot Bible, published by Samuel Bagster & Sons, of London. The compilers of this work (whoever they are we know not) give what is called "A sum­mary view of the principal events of the period from the close of the sacred canon of the Old Testament until the times of the New Testament." According to the system of chronology which this work adopts, the overthrow of Zedekiah occurred in the year 589 B. C. This proposed summary begins after the return of the Jewish people from the Babylonish captivity, but while they were yet under the dominion of the Kingdom of Persia; and when Artaxerxes Longimanus was the reigning king, who in his twentieth year com­missioned Nehemiah to rebuild the walls of Jerusa­lem, an event which happened, according to the chronology used, in 446 B. C.

Then follows a brief record of the death and suc­cessions of kings, the rise and fall of dynasties, and the overthrow of kingdoms, powers, dominions and empires. But it is always shown conclusively that these ruling powers, whatever might be their nation­ality, were dominating the Jewish people.

The summary shows that Alexander the Great marched into Judea to punish the people for certain grievances which, in his mind, they had practiced against him as commander of the Grecian forces, and that God thwarted him in that purpose. It shows that when Alexander died the Grecian empire was divided among his four generals; that Palestine was given to Loamedon, one of those generals, and that it was soon taken away from him by Ptolemy, the king of Egypt, that they "rejoiced to submit to this new master," and what the consequences were. It shows what they suf­fered under Antiochus Epiphanes, especially after a false rumor had been spread concerning his death, which they believed and rejoiced in, and that in conse­quence of this rejoicing "he slew 40,000 persons, sold as many more for slaves, plundered the temple of gold and furniture to the amount of 80 talents of gold, en­tered the Holy of Holies, and sacrificed a sow upon the altar of burnt offerings, and caused the broth of it to be sprinkled all over the temple." No greater indig­nity than this could have been put upon that people. The summary continues, a truthful record of suffering after suffering, trouble after trouble, and indignity after indignity, heaped upon that conquered people, who during all those centuries were reigned over by their enemies, the Gentile nations; but not once does the record show -- no not for even one generation -- that they were ruled by a prince of their own royal house.

Finally, the summary ends as follows: "At length Antipater, a noble but crafty Idumean, by favor of Julius Caesar, was made procurator of Judea, and Hyrcanus continued in the priesthood. After Anti­pater's death, his son, Herod the Great, by the assist­ance of Antony, the Roman triumvir, and through much barbarity and bloodshed assumed the regal dig­nity; which authority was at length confirmed by Au­gustus Caesar. He maintained his dignity with great ability, but with the utmost cruelty, in his own family as well as among others, till the birth of Christ. In the interval he built many cities, and, to ingratiate him­self with the Jews, almost rebuilt the temple.

His crude attempt to murder the infant Saviour is recorded by the evangelist; and soon afterward he died most miserably. After some years, during which the dominions of Herod were governed by his sons, Judea became a Roman province, and the sceptre deparied from Judah, for Shiloh was come [the italics are their own]; and after having been under the government of Roman procurators for some years, the whole Jewish state was at length subverted by Titus, the son of Ves­pasian."

The sophistry in the use of those italicised words, as employed by the compilers of that summary, is that they destroy the evident meaning of that prophecy to which they refer, by the substitution of various scep­tres -- held by various kings, of various Gentile na­tions, that have consecutively held dominion over the Jewish people -- for one particular Sceptre, which the Lord promised should be held, only by some member of Judah's family line, and which should not cease to be held by those of his posterity until Shiloh should come.

If the view, as put forth in the closing sentence of that summary, is the true one, then the entire prophecy must, for several reasons, go by default.

(1) A sceptre did not depart from over the Jews when Christ came. Forty years after Christ had come and gone finds them still under the power of Rome. Shortly afterward they were dispersed and have since been scattered among all nations, where they remain unto this day, and are still being ruled over.

(2) If the first coming of Christ was his Shiloh­ coming, then Shiloh failed; for the people did not gather unto him.

(3) The Lord declares: "Judah is my law giver." According to this summary and other accepted evi­dence, Judah as Lawgiver departed from the Jews 588 years before Shiloh came. Hence that unbridged chasm of nearly six hundred years stands like a gaping wound in the side of the Church of Jesus Christ, when­ever she is compelled to show herself in naked honesty. The entire trend of this summary with its subtle refer­ence to the prophecy in question seems to be that so long as the Jewish nation was ruled over, no matter by whom, and held together as a province or state, this prophecy was vindicated: whereas such vindication, conception, or use of those words, is only an attempt to hold together, by daubing with untempered mortar, an edifice which is tottering and tumbling.

The most charitable construction which can be put upon such accommodating, mollifying, weak and abor­tive efforts to vindicate the truth of God, is that the persons are ignorant of just some such vital point as the fact that Jeremiah was called and commissioned of God to build and plant anew the plucked-up kingdom of David.

All who claim that Christ has come as Shiloh are compelled to resort to just such distortions of the Di­vine Word as the one under consideration, in order to fill up that gaping hiatus of 588 years, from the over­throw of Zedekiah until Christ.

Furthermore, after they have plastered over that gap to their own (questionable) satisfaction, they are still confronted with the fact that the Lord God did not give unto Christ the throne of his father David, nor cause him to reign over the house of Jacob --no, not even spiritually -- for the Jews are a part of the house of Jacob: as these men themselves are compelled to admit. Also the Jews are enemies to the gospel of grace which Jesus Christ came to bring, "but as touch­ing the election [of race], they are beloved for the fathers' sake."

Meanwhile, the great question which confronts us is this: Has God suffered his faithfulness to fail, or al­lowed any of his promises to go by default, or per­mitted his covenant either with Judah, David or Christ to suffer lapse? The very thought that such could possibly be the case causes us to feel the first chilling blight of skepticism to fall heavily upon our hitherto believing and happy hearts.

The next link in the chain of this divine history is of such deep import that it is impossible for us to over estimate its value, as it is the connecting link between sacred history and prophecy; for you will notice in the first clause of the following text we find a record of events which have become history, but before the sen­tence is finished we are carried out into the field of prophecy. "It shall come to pass that like as I have watched over them, to pluck up, and to break down, and to throw down, and to destroy, and to afflict, so shall I watch over them, TO BUILD and TO PLANT, saith the Lord,” (Jer. 31:28).

The Lord here uses the already accomplished facts of history as a basis upon which to rest his promise concerning the accomplishment of those which are yet future. Hence, upon events which once were prophetic, but which have now become history, he predicts the fulfillment of others which are still in the future. But these events must follow as a sequence to those which have gone before, since both these which are past and those which are yet to come were originally couched in the same prophecy, in the same commission, and were to be accomplished by the same prophet, Jeremiah of Libnah.

The Lord has said that David should never lack a man of his seed to sit upon that throne.

Query -- Where was the seed with which Jeremiah must "build and plant"?

Sha Sha
pokerhead
Posts: 10

VINDICATION OF THE PERSONAL PROMISES TO JEREMIAH

Post#15 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 3:10 am

Before we can gather up even the first link in the chain of history as regards the building and planting" which Jeremiah must accomplish, we must take a glance at some of the facts concerning the prophet's own history.

We have already noticed that when the Lord was instructing Jeremiah in the work which he was to do, he said to him, regarding those that should oppose or fight against him, "Be not afraid of their faces, for I am with thee to deliver thee."

But Jeremiah seems not to have met with any special opposition until during the reign of Jehoiakim. This was at a time when the Lord commanded him to go into the court of the temple and speak to the people as they gathered from all the cities of Judah to worship; at the same time he told him to speak all the words which he, the Lord, had commanded him, and to "diminish not a word."

He was true to God, and faithfully delivered the Divine message. The message itself was full of mercy, and accompanied with a proviso that if every man would turn from his evil way then the Lord would avert the impending calamities which hung over the nation as judgments in consequence of their numerous and manifold sins. But it only resulted in the prophets, the priests, and the people gathering themselves into an excited, surging and howling mob, which made a prisoner of Jeremiah, saying unto him, "Thou shalt surely die."

Later, when the princes of Judah heard these things, they came up to the temple, and in order that they might hear and judge for themselves, Jeremiah was permitted to speak again. This he did, still faithfully giving the unwelcome message of the Lord. In conclusion, he said: "The Lord sent me to prophesy against this house [the temple] and against this city all the words that ye have heard. Therefore now amend your ways and doings and obey the voice of the Lord your God; and the Lord will repent him of all the evil that he hath pronounced against you.

"As for me, behold, I am in your hand; do with me as seemeth good unto you. But know ye for a certain, that if ye put me to death, ye shall surely bring innocent blood upon yourselves, and upon this city, and upon the inhabitants thereof; for of a truth, the Lord hath sent me unto you to speak all these words in your ears." The princes were evidently touched somewhat by this appeal, and the people with them; for after this, both princes and people stood against the prophets and the priests, and said, "This man is not worthy to die." So a division arose among them, which resulted in Jeremiah's being spared for the time and set at liberty. But he continued his earnest expostulations with the people because of their sins, and continued just as before his startling annunciations concern­ing the impending ruin of temple, city and nation.

These truths were so unwelcome and painful for the people to hear, that other prophets soon began to appear who uttered contrary predictions, no doubt for the sake of the popularity which they should acquire among the people by prophesying the return of peace and prosperity. Hananiah was the name of one of these false prophets. On one occasion he broke a small wooden yoke which Jeremiah wore upon his neck, which had been put there as an object lesson by Divine direction. When this false prophet broke that yoke, he told the people that the Lord said that the yoke of Nebuchadnezzar, which was not only upon the neck of Judah, but upon all nations, should be broken within two years. But the Lord spoke to Hananiah, through his true prophet, Jeremiah, and told him that, because he had made the people trust in a lie, he should die that same year. And the record reads, "So Hananiah, the prophet, died the same year in the seventh month."

Shemeniah was another of those lying prophets who was dealt with in a manner which condemned him and exonerated Jeremiah. But still Jeremiah's enemies, the priests, false prophets, and certain elders, were not at rest, but continued their perse­cutions until the result was that Jeremiah was thrown into prison. With his liberty thus restricted he could not publicly deliver his messages, so he called Baruch, the scribe, to his assistance, and he wrote as Jeremiah dictated. This matter was inscribed upon a roll of parchment, with the view of having it read to the people in some public and frequented part of the city.

The favorable opportunity occurred on the occa­sion of a great festival, which was a feasting day, and which brought the inhabitants of the land from all parts of Judea together at Jerusalem. On the day of the festival Baruch took the roll and stationed himself at the entry of the new gate of the temple, and, calling upon the people to hear him, began to read. A great concourse of people soon gathered around him who listened, apparently with honest attention.

But one of the by-standers, Michaiah, went down into the city to the king's palace, and reported to the king's scribes and princes, who were assembled in the council chamber, that Baruch had gathered the people together in one of the courts of the temple, and that he was reading to them a discourse on prophecy which had been written by Jeremiah. He also told them all he himself had heard, as Ba­ruch read the book in the hearing of the people.

This aroused such an interest and anxiety among them that they immediately sent Jehudi, an at­tendant at the palace, to tell Baruch to come to them and bring the roll with him. As soon as he arrived, they asked him to read what he had written. He did so, and they were evidently much impressed, for the Scripture statement is, "When they had heard all the words they were afraid, both one and the other."

Their fear must have been great, because they felt a conviction that these words were from the Lord, and that these predictions would surely come to pass. This very fear created in them a tender regard for both Baruch and Jeremiah, for they told him that they would be obliged to report the matter to the king; but they advised Baruch, saying: "Go hide thee; thou and Jeremiah, and let no man know where ye be."

When the matter was reported to the king, the subject matter of the book so angered him that when he had read only three or four leaves, he took out his pen-knife and cut the entire roll to pieces and threw it in the fire, and then ordered his officers to "take Baruch, the scribe, and Jeremiah, the prophet; but the Lord hid them," (Jer. 36:26).

Strange, isn't it, that they should have Jeremiah in prison, and yet, when they come to look for him he cannot be found? But then, we believe that when the Lord does a thing it is well done. One thing we do know about this, that the Lord took him out of prison to hide him, and that when he again appeared among men, they did not imprison him on the old charge, for the Scripture saith: "Now Jeremiah came in and went out among the people; for they had not put him in prison."

Meanwhile, King Jehoiakim had received his prom­ised burial, that of "an ass, drawn and cast outside the gates of Jerusalem," "and his dead body," as Jeremiah says, was "cast out in the day to the heat, and in the night to the frost."

The next time in which we find Jeremiah a prisoner is during the reign of Zedekiah, who, as we have before mentioned, was the prophet's own grandson. At this time Jeremiah's enemies represented to the King that the predictions which were uttered by the prophet were so gloomy and terrible that they depressed and dis­couraged the hearts of the people to such an extent that they were weakened in their power to resist, and that accordingly he must be regarded as a public enemy. So persistently were these claims urged that finally the King gave Jeremiah into the hands of his enemies and told them that they might do with him as they pleased.

There was a dungeon in the prison, to which there was no access except from above. The bottom was wet and miry and covered with filth and slime. It was the custom to let prisoners down into its gloomy depths and leave them there to starve. Into this filthy dungeon Jeremiah was cast and was left to die of misery and hunger. But God brought Jeremiah into this world to accomplish a work, for the accomplishment of which he himself had pledged his reputation as God; conse­quently he could not afford to let that man die then and there.

So the Lord began to trouble Zedekiah. His heart smote him, his fears confronted him, and he trembled with misgivings lest he had delivered a true prophet of God into the hands of those who, he knew, would surely put him to death. So he inquired what had been done with the prisoner, and learned that he had been practically buried alive. Then, with fear-tortured haste, be commanded an officer to take thirty men and get Jeremiah out of that horrible pit "before he die."

When they went to the dungeon and opened the mouth of it they found that he had sunk deep into the mire. They threw down some old clothes, which he was to fold and place under his arms and about those parts of his body where the ropes were to pass, and where the greatest weight would come in pulling him out of the mire and up out of that dismal pit.

After that Jeremiah had the freedom of the court of the prison, and the King secretly sought him and begged him to reveal the truth concerning his own fate and that of the kingdom of Judah. Jeremiah did this faithfully, and the King found out all that he sought to know; which proved to be much more than he cared to learn, especially concerning his own fate.

While Jeremiah was shut up in the court of that prison the word of the Lord came to him for the last time conceiving the destruction of the city. At the same time the promise concerning the preservation of his own life was given, and was as follows: "But I will deliver thee in that day, saith the Lord, and thou shalt not be given into the hand of the men of whom thou art afraid. For I will surely deliver thee, and thou shalt not fall by the sword, but thy life shall be for a prey [booty or prize] upon thee," (Jer. 39:17, 18).

Jeremiah remained shut up in that prison until the Babylonish forces captured the city, broke down the walls, burned the Royal palaces and the houses of the people, thus making the inside of those prison walls the only place of safety in all that city.

Now, it is a remarkable fact, one well worthy of God and certainly one most worthy of note, that the Lord had promised not only that the prophet should be delivered from his enemies among his own people, but also that the enemies of his people should treat him well, and that amidst it all his life should be spared. It is also a remarkable fact that, in view of all this, we read: "Now Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon, gave charge concerning Jeremiah to Nebuzaradan, the cap­tain of the guard, saying, ‘Take him and look well to him, but do him no harm, but do unto him even as he shall say unto thee’," (Jer. 39:11, 12).

The effect of this command from the conquering king was so wonderful in its results, and the result was so absolutely essential in order that Jeremiah might be free to finish his Divinely-appointed task, that we are moved to give this result just as it is recorded in the Word of God

"And the captain of the guard took Jeremiah and said unto him . . . Behold I loose thee this day from the chains that were upon thy hand. If it seem good un­to thee to come with me into Babylon, come and I will look well unto thee; but if it seem ill unto thee to come with me into Babylon, forbear; behold all the land is before thee; whither it seemeth good and convenient for thee to go, thither go. . . . So the captain of the guard gave him victuals and a reward [money] and let him go."

Query: Where did he go and why?

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