THE ORIGIN OF BRITISH ISRAELISM
I. THE ORIGIN OF BRITISH ISRAELISM.
An obscure person named Richard Brothers who lived in England between 1757 to 1824 is credited with the origination of this farfetched fantasy. He was true to the form of religious fanatics and his movement was strikingly parallel with Joseph Smith and the Mormons. Richards was as eccentric as Smith was ignorant. There is a distinct similarity in the origination of these episodes, a resemblance in the characters of the men, and in the cues to their religious fictions, particularly in the purported saga of the ten tribes of Israel upon which the respective movements were founded. The religious lunacy of these men was about identical in degree, the difference being in the circumstances of Richard Brothers' commitment to an asylum and Joseph Smith to a jail. The dignity which the movement lost by this circumstance in connection with its originator was later regained by one Piazzi Smyth, a Scot astronomer, who evolved the British Israel theory by complicated mathematical calculations in some remote connection with the Great Pyramids upon which he based the claim that the throne of England is the throne of David, and the kings and queens of England Queen Victoria in 1800 and George VI in 1944— are of the royal lineage of David, and the British people, therefore, the real Israel today, which they claim descends not through Judah or the Jews but from the ten tribes. The true Israel, they claim, does not include Jews but are the Anglo Saxons. There are numerous adherents of this theory, in the main Britishers of the Anglican church. In America it was confined to the parts of the country named, Canada and the New England states, until its recent infiltration into the Pacific coast region, which is due to the fact that California in particular is a sort of rallying ground for all of the fanatical sects from everywhere. The Anglo-Israelists have made a significant showing along the coast from Vancouver, B. C., to San Diego, Calif., if their claims are true that they had upwards of fifty thousand adherents in these coast sections.
Their theoretical views are completely contrary to ethnological history bearing on the origin of the British people and the Anglo-Saxon race, the facts of which the Anglo-Israel authors have the bold audacity to dispute and deny. But their unhistorical claims are no more pretentious than their unscriptural interpretations are presumptuous.
Now what is Anglo-Israelism? It is the doctrine that the Jews are not Israel. That is all a mistake, we are told. Jews are one thing and Israel quite another. It is a doctrine that originated in England, largely surrounding the British people. The doctrine asserts that the Anglo-Saxon peoples are the ten tribes the true Israel. And it is Israel, not the Jews, who will be restored in the millennium. This restored Israel, the Anglo Saxon people, with Jesus Christ seated on the reestablished earthly throne of David as king, will rule the whole world. Anglo-Israelism teaches that the literal throne of David exists today in the throne of the English kings, and when Jesus Christ returns he will simply occupy the throne which the British kings now hold, and have been holding for centuries, for him until he comes, until the millennium commences. That millennium will surround the Anglo-Saxon peoples, not the Jews at all. The Anglo-Saxon peoples of the earth will be gathered together in the millennium, and with Jesus Christ on the throne now held by England's House of Hanover, they will rule the world. Fantastic, do you say? That is not half of it - it is utterly false.
The bibliography of this movement is not as prolific as of some other cults, yet there are numerous books and publications devoted to its promotion. The leading magazine publication advocating the Anglo-Israel theory bears the name of DESTINY, and because of its rather suspicious political character, it was listed as a subversive influence in the book entitled UNDER COVER, by a well known American writer. The author of UNDER COVER appears to have good ground for his belief that Anglo-Israelism is seditious in character. It is, without doubt, a system of national religion, based on the general idea of nationalism, and politically it could hardly be consistent with American principles. The indictment against the system on political grounds appears to be justifiable.
There have been some books written against the Anglo-Israel doctrine, but all such books, so far as I know, were written by religionists who are themselves of the millennial school of thought premillennialists of one form or another. Doctor Rimmer, for instance, has contributed ably to the exposure of the fallacies of the ethnological and philological contentions of Anglo-Israelism, and he debated the issues with the Doctor John Matthews, of Los Angeles; but Doctor Rimmer being a premillennialist also, his Biblical argument was rendered somewhat impotent because of the fact that it was merely one millennial theory pitted against another. No premillennialist can successfully oppose Anglo-Israelism. The one who defeats in debate an Anglo-Israelist must be one who knows how to expose the entire superstructure of premillennialism with all of its latent errors, and in all of its forms.
A ranking authority on Anglo-Israelism is Professor E. Odlum, M.A., B.Sc., F.R.C., Inst., etc. He is author of an unusual book in defense of the Anglo-Israel theory. The book bears the title, "God's Covenant Man: British Israel." The following statements, gleaned from the pages of this book, will show the character of this theory. Let me read them to you:
Thus deposes one of the highest authorities of the Anglo Israel politico-religio cult. The statements of this author are nothing short of amazing. They reveal the racial and political propaganda of this sect. If the nation of England held to this doctrine, if king George believed it, if her representatives in Parliament subscribed to it, and if British people in large percent embraced it, then Great Britain would thereby assume the same character as Nazi Germany before a civilized world, and would not only deserve to be subdued but for the sake of world security and freedom would, of necessity, have to be overthrown and divested of power as completely as Nazi Germany, or any other aggressor nation holding to the delusive doctrine of "the master race."
Let it here be definitely stated that neither the British government nor the British people, not even the Church of England, make any claim that Great Britain is Israel. No more so than the United States government lends endorsement or encouragement to the Mormon claim that the original Americans are the ten tribes of Israel. Like Mormonism, therefore, Anglo-Israelism is just another "ism" that needs to be exposed. It is a false theory of late origin, the fallacies of which are manifest when compared with the facts of history and scripture. It is similar in origin to all other late isms and rests on much the same claims.
About a hundred years ago imposter Joseph Smith made the false claim of having special divine revelations, published a bogus book and Mormonism was born. A few years later Ellen White fell victim to some delusions which she called visions. Her followers thought her revelations were divine, named her their inspired prophetess, published her visions, and Seventh Day Adventism was born. Near the same time ecstatic Mary Baker Eddy found it profitable to dream dreams and to see visions, so she brought forth her system of so called science in the form of a creed called "Science and Health with a Key to the Scriptures," and "Christian Science," falsely so called, was born.
In this same era of "visions" and "revelations," Richard Brothers, in England, just another misguided soul, made himself believe that he was the subject of special revelations, too; and he conjured up the notion that the Anglo-Saxon peoples, not the hated Jews, are the real Israelites and Anglo-Israelism is here. Being a Britisher himself, and fond of the Anglo Saxon idea anyway, it was not hard for Brothers to believe that they are Israel in other words, we are it. Thus Anglo-Israelism was born. That is precisely the way it came into existence, and like Mormonism, Adventism, Eddyism and all other humanisms, it has nothing in history, scripture, or common ordinary sense upon which to stand.
II. THE HISTORICAL ARGUMENT.
Let us break this proposition down.
(1) The Bible and history.
A full discussion of Anglo-Israelism will require a detailed examination of their historical, ethnological, philological and Biblical arguments, followed by an exposure of the political character of this British system of teaching.
If you have read the literature of these speculators you cannot have failed to observe an oft repeated phrase—"the Bible and history." The Bible and history teach it, they say. If the Bible teaches it that settles the history of it. The Bible does not conflict with history nor history contradict the Bible. Their overuse of this phrase reveals that they are afraid of their ground. If the Bible proof is positive, why do they not take the Bible and prove their proposition? They are conscious of their inability to do so, hence the need of keeping their followers confused and bewildered by reams of papers on centuries and millenniums of history.
The Bible Teaches:
But no sooner do they use that expression than they cant about "scriptural intimations," and "strong historical proof." These two expressions occur repeatedly in their writings and addresses—"scriptural intimations" and "strong historical proof." How much must the Bible "intimate" a thing to teach it? And how "strong" must the "proof" of a thing be to prove it? The Roman Catholic church claims that the "Bible and history" teach that Peter was the first pope—the Bible "intimates" it, they think, and history contains "strong proof" of it, according to them.
But the Anglo-Israel "scriptural intimation" consists in interpretations of prophecy that are purely arbitrary. For instance, they apply certain prophecies to the cities of the :Axis Powers today that definitely referred to Babylon, Nineveh, Tyre, and other cities of antiquity. They cannot cite one single passage and say, here it is, read it; this is my proof. Scriptural "intimations" indeed! Their theory bogs down in the meshes of history, ethnology and philology in the utter absence of Bible proof.
They know, we all know, that the origin of races is a speculative field. There is no certain way to determine definitely some questions that pertain wholly to ethnology. Their own meandering is one of the best proofs of that fact. But Anglo-Israel teachers rely on that very fact, the uncertainties and difficulties of the ethnological and philological realms, to impress their curious minded members with their claim to hold the key to an understanding of a very "deep" and "intricate" discovery. Their use of history is but a smattering of historical references; their use of the prophecies is but a smearing of the prophetic word; and their Bible "intimations" are but a garbling of biblical texts. A mere intimation, with no actual proof, is all that the theory promises at its best, even in the eyes of those who espouse it, and the most that can be claimed for it by those who teach it is that it is a doubt, and to one who actually knows the "Bible and history" it is a delusion.
History and the Bible:
It is very interesting to observe how the Anglo-Israelist connects the two. For instance, one of their chief texts for a "scriptural intimation" and "strong historical proof" is Gen. 48:1820: "And Joseph said unto his father, not so, my father: for this is the firstborn; put thy right hand upon his head. And his father refused, and said, I know it, my son, I know it: he also shall become a people, and he also shall be great: but truly his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his seed shall become a multitude of nations. And he blessed them that day, saying, In thee shall Israel bless, saying, God make thee as Ephraim and as Manasseh: and he set Ephraim before Manasseh."
And here is the "intimation"—Ephraim should be called "great" and Great Britain is called Great, therefore Great Britain is Ephraim! On the other hand Manasseh must have a place in the picture, so the United States is Manasseh. That is the very hub of their British-Anglo-Saxon-Israel claim—that Great Britain is Ephraim and the United States is Manasseh. But the whole argument is based upon misquotation. The passage does not say that "Ephraim shall be called great"—it says that
"his younger brother shall be greater than he"—that is, Ephraim should be "greater" than Manasseh," which could only mean, according to this theory that England is greater than the United States! Does lend-lease furnish "strong historical proof" on this point? How do Americans like that slant? Really, what might have happened to great Ephraim if little Manasseh had not come to the rescue? He would have been sunk! The theory furnishes very good British propaganda but, without reflecting on the imperial greatness of Britain or the national pride of America, if the glory of either is the hope of Israel it is a mighty poor affair.
A Great Nation:
Another "intimation" which is substituted for an argument is found in the expression "a great nation" or a "multitude" of nations, which Israel should become. But that is surely farfetched, especially since the same thing is said of Ishmael in Gen. 17:20 and Gen. 21:18. Since Ishmael should also become "a great nation" and a "multitude" also, it could be that Englishmen are Ishmaelites instead of Israelites!
It is asserted that Isaiah was prophesying of Great Britain in Isa. 60:12: "For the nation and kingdom that shall not serve thee shall perish, yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted." An Anglo-Israel authority, Odlum, page 180, says: "There is no escape. All must serve Israel. All are serving Britain. Britain is Israel." All that I have to say to that statement is that if what the British-Israel authority asserted represents the British government and the people of the British isles, England would be as bad as Nazi Germany and would deserve destruction. Fortunately Britain and her dominions espouse no such doctrine.
(2) The Anglo-Saxon descendants.
The British-Israelists assert that "multitude" of people means a "company of nations," and Great Britain is a "company" of nations—therefore Great Britain is Ephraim. But why pick on Britain ? Babylonia, Persia, Grecia and Rome were all a company of nations. Cyrus the Great said that God had given to him all the kingdoms of the earth—2 Chron. 36: 23. Allowing that interpretation any company of nations could be selected to be Ephraim and thereby become Israel.
The Seed of Ephraim:
But if the expression "his seed" should become "a multitude" of peoples or nations, means Britain, it would of necessity embrace her dominions, for Britain alone is not a "company" of nations. Here the Anglo-Israelist objects—for his theory calls for Anglo-Saxons only. And it is a known fact that Britain's "company" of nations are not Saxons. And those who are England's Saxons are a mixture of Celts, Normans, Picts, Gauls, and even the German Teutons. They all once occupied the whole of Great Britain and amalgamated with the Scots with Germans at the head of it. What a mongrel Israel!
The actual truth of that matter is that there is more Teutonic blood in king George of England than there is Saxon blood. The house of Este, one of the oldest houses in Italy, married into the houses of Brunswick and Hanover, from which descended the English kings and their line of sovereigns. The house of Hanover is German. It was during the World War I that England changed the house of Hanover into the house of Brunswick, but it remains a fact nevertheless that their line of sovereigns is mixed with Italian and German to a predominating extent. It follows as an irresistible conclusion that the throne of England is in the family of king George and not in the ten tribes of Israel.
If the British-Israel argument on the "company" of nations is correct, we have British Israel with black and yellow Ephraim; for if they deny that Britain's dominions are the ten tribes also, they have no point on Great Britain's "company of nations" as the "multitude" from Ephraim's seed.
The proposition affirmed by Dr. John Matthews in the Los Angeles debate was worded as follows: "The Bible and history teach that the Anglo-Saxon peoples have descended in large part from the ten tribes of Israel and are therefore God's modern covenant people." It will be noted that the gentleman does not know who the Anglo-Saxons really are, for he says they "in large part descended" from the ten tribes. He dare not say that they are the ten tribes! How "large part" did they descend? If they are not one hundred per cent Israel, then what percent?
The very phraseology "in large part descended" becomes an admission of a fatal fact—namely, that they do not have a pure Israel, do not know exactly or in what percent Israel exists in the Anglo-Saxons, not knowing precisely who the Anglo-Saxons are, and therefore the theory offers to the whole world a mongrel Israel composed and consisting of Celts, Normans, Picts, Scandinavians, Danes, Norwegians, Scots, Russians and Germans. Furthermore, since there is a decided similarity of sound in the names Japheth and Japan, Manasseh and Manchuria, the African tribe of Mossi and Moses, it could be possible, according to the way an Anglo-Israelist argues, that the Japs descended from Japheth, the Manchurians from Manasseh, and the tribe of Mossi from Moses, so British Israel may be all mixed up with black Ephraim, and yellow Manasseh, all melted into a mongrel Israel, indeed!
If it should be countered that only the Anglo-Saxons are Israel—then a question arises: Are the Anglo-Saxons "a company of nations" belonging to Great Britain? If not, in order for the theory to be true Great Britain must some future time rule over all the Anglo-Saxon world. And that is precisely what this system proposes as shown from the quotation from Odlum, page 180: "There is no escape. All must serve Israel. All are serving Britain. Britain is Israel." There is no doubt about it—this overall theory of Anglo-Israelism provides that Great Britain shall rule over all Anglo-Saxons. No wonder it has been under the surveillance of the FBI and is listed in UNDER COVER as a politically seditious movement.
According to British Israelism the only difference between Israelism and Naziism is the question, who is the master race? The Lyric of Walt Disney, of California, might be recommended at this point as a fitting chorus: "When der Fuehrer say 'Ve iss der master race,' we say 'phewewew' right in der Fuehrer's face!"
This talk of the Anglo-Saxons being descendants of the ten tribes "in large part" reminds one of the theory of the origin of species. By the evolution theory they try to make a monkey out of a man, and by this British theory they are trying to make an Israelite out of an Englishman! But look at his line of descent. Even his Davidic throne has Hamitic links. Wilhelm of Germany is alleged to be Hamite, while George V. of England, his cousin, is alleged to be an Israelite. King George is known to have more Teutonic than Anglo-Saxon blood. His throne inheres in a family, not in a tribe.
Like the theory of evolution, Anglo-Israelism is at best a guess, born in doubt and exists in doubt. In one hundred years of its existence it still has nothing but doubt to offer. It consists of biological impossibilities, with centuries of mixed marriages, and brings forth a mongrel Israel. Their argument is not complimentary to the Anglo-Saxon people.
(3) The ten tribes.
It is insisted that the ten tribes are the real Israel, not the Jews of the tribes of Judah and Benjamin—but the ten tribes and the Anglo-Saxons (us) are descendants of the ten tribes, therefore we are Israel. Now, using your thinker, ask yourself the question: When and how did the ten tribes originate? Read 1 Kings 12 and 13. They originated in the rending of the kingdom and went off in apostasy. God's throne and kingdom remained in Judah. God repudiated the kingdom of the ten tribes and sent a prophet out of Judah to denounce their altars. How does it happen now that the apostate ten tribes have the advantage over Judah? Just how and when did the ten tribes fall heir to the throne from Judah?
Now let these Anglo-Israelists quit careering all over creation and get down to the task of answering these questions— not mere "scriptural intimations," but direct scriptural answers —and they will be getting somewhere, at least we will. In order for the Anglo-Israelists to prove their theory there are a few things they must of necessity prove:
First: They must prove that the ten tribes were once lost. If so, how do they know it?
Second: They must prove that they have found these lost tribes. If so, how can they identify them?
Third: They must prove that the British and American people are these lost ten tribes. If so, how shall they prove it? It will not be enough to say they "descended in large part"— that will not fill the order—they must identify them.
Fourth: They must prove that Great Britain is Ephraim and the United States is Manasseh. And having done that they will have only proved that England is greater than the U. S. A., which should throw lend-lease in reverse, start it working the other way, and let our armies come home.
Fifth: They must prove that the ten tribes alone constitute the house of Israel, in which there are no Jews.
In the magazine DESTINY, page 347, this statement is made: "Jews are only a small part of Israelites. They are not the house of Israel, for in that house there are no Jews." Now compare that statement with the facts set forth in a few passages of scripture.
1. The house of Israel was in Babylon with Ezekiel—Ezek. 3 :1-15.
In verse 1 God told Ezekiel to "go speak unto the house of Israel." In verse 5 God said that he should speak "to the house of Israel" only. In verse 11 he was told to speak "to them of the captivity, unto the children of thy people." In verse 15 it identifies them as those who were in Babylon with Ezekiel "that dwelt by the river Chebar"—in Babylon. But everybody knows that the Jews were in the captivity of Babylon, not the ten tribes. So the Jews in Babylon, according to Ezekiel, were the "house of Israel." Ezekiel was commanded to speak to them, but he was told to speak only to the house of Israel, those in Babylon, dwelling by the river Chebar. So it seems that there were quite a number of Jews in the house of Israel, after all, and DESTINY must be wrong about it. Moreover, Ezekiel 37 pictures the "whole house of Israel" in return from the Babylonian captivity. The statement that "in that house there are no Jews" is absurd and displays an ignorance that is appalling on the part of editors and writers of such a magazine as DESTINY.
2. The house of Israel returned from Babylon with Ezra, Zerrubbabel and Nehemiah—Ezek. 47:13. "Thus saith the Lord God: This shall be the border, whereby ye shall inherit the land according to the twelve tribes of Israel: Joseph shall have two portions."
Here Ezekiel tells them the portion of all the twelve tribes when they return. Jeremiah said that the house of Israel would return from the north country to dwell again in their land. Jer. 23:8: "But the Lord liveth, which brought up and which led the seed of the house of Israel out of the north country, and from all countries whither I had driven them; and they shall dwell in their own land." Cyrus the Great, king of Persia, made a proclamation in Babylon to all the Jews "throughout all his kingdom" for any who were "of all his people" (God's people) to return. Ezra 1:1-3: "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." This proclamation was addressed to Israel. God had "stirred up the spirit of Cyrus" to make this proclamation. It fulfilled all that Jeremiah had spoken concerning the return of Israel to their land, a blanket fulfillment. If the ten tribes were not included in this proclamation, they were not of "all his people"—not God's people. They all had the opportunity to return, all Israel in Babylon, and those in the "north country"—the ten tribes —and this proves definitely that the distinction which the Anglo-Israelists attempt to make is a false distinction.
After the return to Jerusalem Ezra commanded a sin offering for every tribe of Israel, and he referred to them as "all Israel." Ezra 6 :16-17: "And the children of Israel, the priests, and the Levites, and the rest of the children of the captivity, kept the dedication of this house with joy, and offered at the dedication of this house of God an hundred bullocks, two hundred rams, four hundred lambs; and for a sin offering for all Israel, twelve he goats, according to the number of the tribes of Israel." Why offer for "all Israel" if it was only the Jews who returned from Babylon, and not Israel at all, as Anglo-Israelites assert?
In his printed Radio Addresses, the one of May 22, 1943, the Dr. John Matthews said that "it has been admitted that Ezra and Nehemiah are Jewish books." In the same address he said that "it has also been admitted that in two or three instances Jews and Israel are the same." But DESTINY says that there are "no Jews" in the house of Israel. The Doctor and the Editor had better confer.
Since it is "admitted" that "in two or three instances" Jews and Israel were the same, we now claim the right to demand that they name these two or three instances. And if they are the same in two or three instances, they might explain how many instances Jews and Israel must be the same in order to remain the same. If they are the same a part of the time, and a part of the time they are not the same, then how may we tell when they are the same and when they are not the same? Just how many "instances" does the Bible have to say a thing to prove it to be that way?
Take another look at Ezra. Read Chap. 3:11: "And they sang together by course in praising and giving thanks unto the Lord; because he is good, for his mercy endureth for ever toward Israel. And all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the Lord, because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid." If the Jews and Israel are not the same, why should these Jews who had returned from Babylon, who were not "in the house of Israel" per Anglo-Israelists —why should they be shouting for Israel, if they were not Israel ?
In the book of Ezra they are called Jews eight times and Israel forty times. In Nehemiah they are called Jews eleven times and Israel twenty two times. If these terms are not used interchangeably by Ezra and Nehemiah, how could they have used them interchangeably if they had wanted to do so? If these terms are not used interchangeably, then we have more Israel than Jews in Ezra, and the argument is reversed, for Anglo-Israelists insist, that only the Jews, not Israel, returned to Judah from Babylon. But if the terms "Jews" and "Israel" are used interchangeably, then they are identical, the same in more than "two or three instances," and their whole argument is lost. In the two lists found in Ezra 2 and Nehemiah 7, the number of Israel was 12,000 and the number of Judah was 30,000—and the sin offering was made for "all Israel," for "every tribe of Israel." Why? These facts are fatal to the Anglo-Israel theory.
It is pertinent here to inquire, who returned to Palestine. The Anglo-Israelists deny that Israel returned. Only the Jews returned. Israel remained scattered and lost, to be found centuries later in the British Isles. Let us see. In 1 Chron. 9 13 we read: "So all Israel were reckoned by genealogies; and behold, they were written in the book of the kings of Israel and Judah, who were carried away to Babylon for their transgress on . . . And In Jerusalem dwelt of the children of Judah, and of the children of Benjamin, and of the children of Ephraim and Manasseh." Let it be noted that this was after the return, and who is in Jerusalem? First, "all Israel," and they were "reckoned by genealogies," so it must have been true. Second, among them were "children of Judah" and "children of Benjamin," who were Jews, according to Anglo-Israelists. But note: "And of the children of Ephraim and Manasseh." Here are the very ones who the Anglo-Israelists say were "Israel"—and they were there. But they tell us only the Jews were there—not Israel at all. They are dead wrong.
In 713 B.C., during the reign of Hezekiah, Sennacherib, king of Assyria, invaded Judah, took all the fenced cities—2 Kings 18:3—and carried the captives to Assyria. But that is where the ten tribes were—in Assyria. So in this way both Judah and Israel were in Assyria. Later, the proclamation of Cyrus— Ezra 1:13—gave "all the opportunity to return, and all who wanted to return but were not able were given government aid.
Anyone can see what these facts do to the Anglo-Israel theory. That theory contends that Israel was "in the north country" and did not return to Palestine, that the ten tribes subsequently became lost, and never did return, but were traced to the British Isles, and now exist in the British, Anglo-Saxon, Celtic races. The passages cited show that their contention is wrong. These scriptural facts are absolutely fatal to the Anglo-Israel doctrine.
3. The house of Israel was in Judah during the personal ministry of Christ.—Matt. 10:56.
"These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel
Here Jesus commanded the twelve to "go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel." If "lost" in this passage means that the tribes were physically lost, how could the twelve disciple "go" to them? And if the Jews were "not in the house of Israel," since it is claimed that the ten tribes were not in Judea, but were lost, to whom did the disciples "go," and to whom did they preach? They were specifically told not to go to the Gentiles, and not to go to the Samaritans, so if they did not go to the Jews, to whom were they sent? But if they did go to the Jews, since those to whom they went were the "lost sheep of the house of Israel," it certainly follows that the Jews were "in that house" in fact, the Jews were that house.
Again, if "the lost sheep of the house of Israel" were the ten tribes only, as asserted, then the disciples did not belong to the "house of Israel" themselves, and were therefore forbidden to preach to their own tribe! Of course, "lost sheep" does not mean literal sheep, hence they were not literally lost. The expression "lost sheep of the house of Israel" denotes their spiritual condition.
In Luke 2:36 we are told that Anna was of the tribe of Assher, and she was not lost, and Luke knew the tribe to which she belonged, and I reckon Anna knew it, too. It must be plain to all who regard these facts of scripture that the people of Judah were the lost sheep of the house of Israel, to whom the twelve and the seventy were sent. The house of Israel refers definitely to the Jews in Judea and Galilee. If this is not true, it becomes the task of those who deny it to tell us where they were when the Lord sent his disciples to preach to them.
Ezekiel was sent only to the house of Israel in Babylon, dwelling by the river Chebar. The disciples of Jesus were sent only to the house of Israel, dwelling in Judea and Galilee in the time of Christ. Yet these so called experts on history and ethnology tell us that these tribes were not there, and that no Jews were in the house of Israel: But the house of Israel was in Babylon with Ezekiel. Every tribe of Israel, referred to as "all Israel," is found in Ezra. They are mentioned in the New Testament specifically, and Anna the prophetess was personally said to be one of them. The disciples were sent out by the Lord to preach to them—yet these British-Israel historians, ethnologists, philologists and archtheorists tell us that none were there.
Their theory is not historical; it is not ethnological; it is not philological; and it is not biblical. And the expression "all Israel" stands in protest against Anglo-Israelism.
4. The house of Israel was in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost—Acts 2:122.
The ten tribes were in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost There were "Jews from every nation under heaven" and among them were those who were called "Parthians and Medes." Who were these "Medes" in Jerusalem on Pentecost? Turn to 2 Kings 17:6: "In the ninth year of Hoshea, the king of Assyria took Samaria, and carried Israel away into Assyria, and placed them in Halah and in Habor by the river of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes." Now read 2 Kings 18:11: "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." These two passages very plainly show that the ten tribes were carried away into Media and "placed in the "cities of the Medes." But on the day of Pentecost there were "Jews" from "Media," referred to as "Medes." So the ten tribes were present in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost—the very thing that Anglo-Israelism denies.
Checking the numerous verses of Acts 2 bearing on this point, we have the following:
In verse 5 reference is made to "Jews from every nation under heaven." In verse 9 some of them are called "Medes"— "Parthians and Medes." In verse 14 Peter addresses them as "men of Judea." In verse 22 he calls them "Men of Israel."
In verse 36 he labels them as "all the house of Israel." Then in Acts 10:36, the same apostle, speaking to the house of Cornelius, calls them the "children of Israel" to whom the gospel was sent and which was "published throughout all Judea."
There is no foundation for British-Israelism in Acts 2 or in Acts 10, where the gospel began to be preached to the Jews and where it began to be preached to the Gentiles. The Anglo-Israelists are making a distinction without a difference. They are attempting to draw a distinction that the New Testament does not make. Their theory is the figment of their own imagination, conceived in national pride, born of fleshly hope, and promoted as political propaganda under the guise of a religious doctrine.
Sixth: They must prove that "Jews" and "Israel" are never synonymous. Let us look into the uses of these terms in both the Old Testament and New Testament and thus determine if the Anglo-Israel claim of a difference is in fact a true distinction.
In the Old Testament: The terms "Hebrew," "Jew" and "Israel" were used interchangeably in the law governing slavery. In Ex. 21:2 it is said, "If thou buy a Hebrew servant, six years he shall serve: and in the seventh he shall go out free for nothing." In reference to this same law on slavery in Lev. 25:46 the "Hebrew servant" is mentioned as "your brethren, the children of Israel" over whom they should "not rule" continuously "with rigour." Then in Jer. 34:9 the same law of slavery is restated, that every man should let his "Hebrew" servant "go free," and this phrase is added: "To wit, of a Jew his brother." Here we have three statements of the same law. Moses stated it twice and used the terms "Hebrew" and "Israel" interchangeably. Jeremiah quoted the same law and used the terms "Hebrew" and "Jew" interchangeably, showing that he recognized no difference. Moses and Jeremiah understood Heblew, Jew and Israel to mean the same thing and used the three words synonymously. The reference to the covenant that God made with Israel when he brought them out of Egypt shows that Jeremiah was referring to the same law of slavery. "Thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel; I made a covenant with your fathers in the day that I brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondmen, saying, at the end of seven years let ye go every man his brother an Hebrew, which hath been sold unto thee. "Jer. 34:1314. Jeremiah did not know about this late distinction the Anglo-Israelists are making between Jews and Israelites—he thought a Hebrew, a Jew and an Israelite were all the same thing. The Old Testament does not bear out the distinction.
In the New Testament: Most every Bible reader knows something about "Cruder's Concordance" and most Bible students have a copy of it. The author of that concordance, Alexander Cruden, says: "The Jews are always spoken of in the New Testament as the twelve tribes, never as two, and Ezra 6:17 certainly indicates that they were thus considered at the time of the Return." This verdict of scholarship is found in Cruden's Concordance under the heading of "Tribes." But Anglo-Israelites have the audacity to assert that no apostle— not one was a Jew. The apostles were Israelites, they say, not Jews.
What does the New Testament itself say about it? Who are Israelites in the New Testament use of the word? Does the New Testament make a difference between a "fleshly Jew" and a fleshly "Israelite"? In answer to these questions, the following parallels are submitted:
As the matter stands, Paul the Hebrew, the Benjamite, the Israelite, was a Jew. Jesus who "sprang out of Judah," and who was the "Lion of the tribe of Judah," was a Jew. Paul said "we Jews"—Gal. 2:15—and Jesus said "we Jews" Jno. 4 22—so Jesus and Paul were Jews if their own words count any thing or have any meaning. The baseless assertions of Anglo-Israelists to the contrary, notwithstanding.
Seventh: They must prove that God chose the ten tribes over Judah. In Psa. 78:6768 David says very specifically that God "refused the tabernacle of Joseph" and "chose not the tribe of Ephraim" but "chose the tribe of Judah." When did God change his mind and choose the tribe of Ephraim instead?
We hereby make the challenge for any man to produce the passage that proves God ever chose the Ten Tribes over Judah. We demand that passage.
To the contrary—the exact opposite of that—Isaiah the prophet declared that Ephraim should cease to be a people. Ephraim was forming an alliance against Judah. God said it would not stand, or come to pass, and that Ephraim would be broken, cease to be a separate people and become extinct as a nation. In fulfillment of that prophecy they went into captivity and never came out one people again. Do you ask where is such a prophecy found? I shall read it from Isa. 7:58: "Because Syria, Ephraim and the son of Remaliah hath taken evil counsel against thee (Judah), saying, let us go against Judah and vex it, and let us make a breach therein for us, and set a king in the midst of it . . . Thus saith the Lord God, it shall not stand, neither shall it come to pass . . . For the head of Syria is Damascus, and the head of Damascus is Rezin; and in three score and five years shall Ephraim be broken that it be not a people." This prophecy was spoken by Isaiah in 733 B.C., according to the dates agreed upon by such authorities as Wordsworth, Adam Clarke and Pulpit Commentary. The prophecy was fulfilled in 669 B.C., sixty-five years later, "three score and five years," when Ephraim was carried into captivity. The prophecy is linked with the prophecy that the invasion of Judah by Samaria would fail. That invasion did fail. But the prophet said that Ephraim would cease to be a people. Ephraim did cease to be a people. And it all occurred within the period named—B.C. 783 and B.C. 669—"three score and five years," or sixty-five years. Ephraim never came out of that captivity to exist as a people again.
The trouble with the Anglo-Israelists is that they have a theory, and know a certain trail, but they have no fundamental knowledge of the prophecies or of the Bible as a whole. I seriously doubt if a one of them even knows that Isa. 7 :68 is in the Bible. That passage puts an end to their theory with one stroke —they surely do not know that it is there. On the other hand, if they do, their plight is even worse, for they must repudiate a plain prophecy with the date of its fulfillment, supported by the actual facts of history, in order to uphold a theory and have it their own way.
Eighth: They must prove that Ephraim was restored as such and reorganized into a nation.
We have just shown where Isaiah the prophet foretold that Ephraim would cease to be a people, and that he named the events connected with the fulfillment of his prophetic declaration. Let us now study the statements of other prophets regarding the same thing.
1. The prophet Hosea said that Judah would be forgiven but Israel would not be forgiven.—Hos 1111
Verses 1 to 3 of Hos. 1 refer to Israel's sins under the figure of whoredom. Verse 4 very positively states that God would cause to cease the kingdom of the house of Israel." Verse 6 declares that God would "no more have mercy upon the house of Israel" but would "utterly take them away." Verse 7 states that he would "have mercy upon the house of Judah." Verse 11 shows that after the return Israel would not exist as a separate nation, but would become one with Judah, under one head and one nation.
The spiritual application of the prophecy refers to the acceptance of the Gentiles as the people of God as shown by the quotations m numerous places in the New Testament of verses 9 and 10. But the physical application of the prophecy is final —that the ten tribes (Israel or Ephraim) ceased to exist as a separate nation from Judah after the return from the captivity and shall never exist again.
2. The prophet Ezekiel said that after the Return there would be no more two nations, neither two kingdoms, but one —Ezek. 37:2122.
"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 be divided into two kingdoms any more at all." It is here plainly declared that when God brought the children of Israel back "into their own land" from the heathen nations whither they be gone," he made them "one nation" in the land of Israel, with "one king" (God), and they were "no more two nations" nor "divided into two kingdoms any more at all." That ought to be plain enough.
The verses just read, however—verses 21 and 22—are but the conclusions drawn from verses 15 to 20. Let us read these verses: "The word of the Lord came again unto me, saying, 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 shine hand. And when the children of thy people shall speak unto thee, saying, Wilt thou not show 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 stick, and they shall be one in mine hand. And the sticks whereon thou writest shall be in shine hand before their eyes."
The application to anyone informed in these Old Testament facts will not be difficult. There were two sticks given to Ezekiel. Upon one of them he wrote, "For Judah," and upon the other, "For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim." Why the stick of Joseph in the hand of Ephraim? Because Jereboam led the ten tribes away and became king over Ephraim, the ten tribes, in apostasy. But in the Return the "two sticks" were joined "one to another into one stick." When Ezekiel enacted this illustration before the people, with the two sticks in his hand, then joining them into one, the people said: "Wilt thou not show us what thou meanest by these?" Then God told Ezekiel to say: "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 stick, and they shall be one in mine hand." Then with the sticks in his hand "before their eyes," Ezekiel carried out God's instructions, and very plainly told Israel in Babylon that joining the two sticks into one stick meant that after the Return the two nations, Judah and Israel, would be "one nation in the land of Israel" and "no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all." Thus the ten tribes ceased to be a people, no longer having identity as a nation. So said Isaiah, 90 said Hosea, so said Ezekiel. Anglo-Israelism to the contrary, notwithstanding.
There is a spiritual application running through all of these prophecies that should not be overlooked. When Hosea said, "Ye are not my people," but again, "Ye are the sons of the living God"—Hos. 1:10—it referred to the bringing together of the Jews and the Gentiles into the church, the spiritual Israel under Christ, their spiritual head. A direct quotation of the passage is made in 1 Pet. 2:10 and applied to the church as the royal priesthood, the holy nation and the chosen race. The passage from Hosea is also quoted by Paul in Rom. 9:2426 and applied specifically to the calling of the Gentiles. So the case in both the Old Testament and the New Testament is closed against Anglo-Israelism as well as all others who teach the restoration of national Israel either in whole or in part.
Ninth: They must prove that Israel was promised an earthly king.
A king on earth was not a part of the original promise, and was never made a part of any subsequent promise to Israel. In Hos. 13 :911, the prophet declares: "O Israel, thou has destroyed thyself; but in me is shine help. I will be thy king: where is any other that may save thee in all thy cities? And thy judges of whom thou saidst, Give me a king and princes? I gave thee a king in mine anger, and took him away in my wrath." These words cannot be misunderstood—after the Return they should have no king on earth; God would be their king.
The statement of God through Hosea, "I gave them a king in mine anger, and took him away in my wrath," refers to the demand of Israel for an earthly king in the days of Samuel. The record of it is found in 1 Sam. 12:19: "And all the people said unto Samuel, pray for thy servants unto the Lord thy God, that we die not: for we have added unto all our sins this evil, to ask us a king." Here it was a confessed evil that Israel should ask for an earthly king. God told Samuel that in so doing the people had not rejected Samuel, but had rejected God. It was a self confessed sin. Hence, God gave them a king in "anger" and removed him in "wrath," and Hosea said "the iniquity of Ephraim is bound up; his sin is hid."
There are a few questions that push up at this point: 1. If when God was Israel's king, they sinned when they asked for an earthly king, what would it be called now when Christ is king, for Anglo-Israelists and premillennialists to ask for a king on the earth? Would it not be the same sin now in even a greater degree? If Israel rejected the kingship of God in demanding a king on the earth, is it not rejecting the kingship of Christ to demand a king on earth now? And incidentally, if Christ is to be the king over "Israel," according to Anglo-Israelists, they might pause long enough to explain the puzzle of having a Jew king over the Israel nation!
(4) God's modern covenant.
This proposition of the Anglo-Israelists calls for a modern covenant for "God's modern covenant people." Then what is the covenant? It cannot be the old covenant, for it was made with "the house of Israel" and "the house of Judah"—Heb. 8: G10. The first covenant was done away and the second covenant was made with all Christians. What is the modern covenant? Let them name it. Because of "fault" the first covenant gave place to the second—Heb. 8:78. If there had been no fault with the first, there would have been no place for the second. On the same principle, in order to have a place for the "modern covenant people," a third covenant, fault must be found with the second, the new covenant. Will an Anglo-Israelist, or any brand of a millennialist, point out the fault in the New Testament? Tell us what the fault is.
But the quotation in Heb. 8 is from Jer. 31:3133. It tells us what the covenant is and with whom it was made. Verse 31 says "with the house of Israel and the house of Judah"— Israel and Judah. When Jeremiah spake this prophecy it was Israel and Judah, but in the fulfillment of the prophecy it was "the house of Israel" only, for in the New Testament all the Jews were Israel. And in the spiritual sense all Christians are Israel.
What is the covenant that God made with them? Read Rom. 11:2627. "And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins." The expression "so all Israel shall be saved" refers to the manner in which all should be saved, by the gospel. The word "so" is an adverb. of manner, and "all" does not mean that every individual Jew would be saved, but all who should be saved must be saved in the same manner, "so," as the remnant who had accepted the gospel. The apostle then adds: "For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins." What was God's covenant unto them? To "turn away ungodliness from Jacob" and "when I shall take away their sins." Paul said: "This is my covenant with them." Can Israel obtain forgiveness now? If so, that covenant exists now. Can a Jew turn from ungodliness now and receive forgiveness? If so, that covenant has been made. And "so"—in that manner—"all Israel shall be saved"—all of them must be saved alike, just as the remnant by accepting God s new covenant, the gospel of the new testament—"this is my covenant with them, when I shall take away their sins " Did God force ungodliness from Jacob? Did he unconditionally take away their sins? Did he rob them of their iniquities? And all without their consent? No—God put his laws "into their minds" and wrote the new covenant "into their hearts."—Heb 8:1011. They should not "teach every man his brother" to know the Lord, for "all shall know" him as a condition of becoming a brother. In the Old Testament it was first a brother or citizen, then teaching. But in the New Covenant it is first teaching, then a brother or citizen. The order is reversed. So "all shall know me" simply refers to the conditions of becoming a citizen In the new covenant. And God says "their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more." That is the covenant—"this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins"—God's covenant with them was forgiveness.
There is no place in the divine scheme of things for the modern covenant of the Anglo-Israel proposition. They had better accept the gospel and begin preaching the terms of the new covenant to Jews and Gentiles as their only hope, for there is no respect of persons with God.
(5) People modern covenant people.
By this the Anglo-Israelites mean that God has a fleshly people now. But Jesus Christ told the elders of Israel that God had taken the kingdom from them, the fleshly Israel, and had given it to another nation—Matt. 21:43-45 - and now they want to take the kingdom away from the spiritual nation and give it back to the fleshly nation. It does not help an Anglo-Israelist out of the difficulty to say that this passage only means that God took the kingdom from the Jews and gave it to Israel, for that would mean that the ten tribes did not have the kingdom until this transfer was made, and that kills their theory. When were the ten tribes organized into a nation to receive the transfer? How long did God hold the kingdom, after he took it from the Jews, before he gave it to the ten tribes—Israel— over in England?
Peter tells very plainly who this nation is, and when the transfer was made from the fleshly to the spiritual nation. Speaking of the church, spiritual Israel, in 1 Pet. 2:9, Peter said they are "the chosen race"; they are the "royal priesthood"; they are the "holy nation"; they are the "peculiar people."
Paul also very plainly repudiated the fleshly relationship. Phil. 3:38: "For we are the circumcision which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus and have no confidence in the flesh. Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more: circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of Hebrews; as touching the law a Pharisee . . . But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ . . . and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ." Anglo-Israelism is the emphasis on the flesh that Paul here condemns. Paul counted fleshly Israelism as "dung." These modern Israelites ought to get off the dunghill of fleshly Israelism and get their spiritual supply from a higher plane and a purer source.
Paul's argument summed up is simply this: That all baptized into Christ are the seed of Abraham—Gal. 3:2629; that the seed is with Abraham's faith, not with his flesh—Rom. 4: 16; that the hope of Israel is no longer national—Acts 26:67; that fleshly Israel was but a type of spiritual Israel—Gal. 6 :1516; that the new Israel is the church and old Israel is no more —2 Cor. 5:1617; that all Christians, Jews and Gentiles, are God B Israel—Rom. 2:2829; that circumcision of the flesh gives place to circumcision of the heart—Col. 2:11; that conversion to Christ destroys nationality—Eph. 2:1416; that Jew Christians lose the desire for earthly Jerusalem—John 4:24; that Christ had to break the fleshly relation in order to make one church and one hope—Eph. 4:46; that old Israel has no further place in the picture—Phil. 2:37. This was Paul's answer to those of his day who sought to make an Israelitish sect out of the church. His argument applies to all of these modern forms of the same old Judaism.
But the final verdict of Paul against fleshly Israelism is found in his argument on the two covenants in Gal. 4:21-31. In short, he simply said that the bondwoman and her son—national Israelism—must be cast out. The two women, Hagar and Sarah, are two covenants—the old covenant and the new covenant the two sons, Ishmael and Isaac, are two nations—the fleshly nation and the spiritual nation. Hagar and Ishmael had nothing In common with Sarah and Isaac, and never can have. A national Israelite now, according to Paul, is an Ishmaelite, and should be cast out. Cast him. out said Paul. It is the final verdict on fleshly Israelism and abolishes all hope of Israel's national sovereignty, or of national Israelism in any form.
(6) The kings of England and Judah.
It is noteworthy here that the British-Israel authority, OdIum, on page 149, makes the following statement: "King George IS of the royal house of Judah . . . there are many who believe that Britain is Israel, but they seem to doubt the possibility of tracing our Sovereign from king Zedekiah."
In the effort to give even a degree of plausibility to the fake claim that the kings of England are the descendants of Judah, they have in a fumbling way attempted to jumble the genealogies of Matthew and Luke. The British-Israel table of genealogies in the royal house of Brunswick gives only thirty-two generations from Luke 3:32-38. Beginning with Lk. 3:33 they shift to Matthew's record, Matt. 1:7-10, and to the forty-eighth generation. They omit both Jehoichin and Jehoiakim and insert Zedekiah. This is done to connect Zedekiah's daughter with the royal throne of Judah, and to establish king George of England on David's throne. After this unscrupulous and dishonest juggling of the records of the inspired writers of the New Testament, they then add the assertion: "Nearly correct" —meaning, of course, that it is absolutely worthless!
The very purpose of the record of the genealogies by Matthew and Luke was to establish beyond all doubt that Jesus Christ is heir to David's throne; on the male side through Joseph, and on the female side through Mary, his mother. Though Joseph was not the father of Jesus, he stood in legal line—the one was legal and the other the fleshly, or the natural, thereby establishing both regal line and the legal right of Jesus Christ as the heir of David's throne in the heavens, according to the prophecies.
The claim of these pseudo-Israelites is that Jeremiah was the father of Hamutal, who was the mother of Zedekiah, continuing the line through Tea Nephi, the daughter of Zedekiah.
Besides Jeremiah the prophet there are seven other Jeremiahs included in the chronicles of the old testament. Or~e Jeremiah was one of the group of princes and priests who sealed a covenant in the days of Nehemiah—Neh. 10:12. Another Jeremiah was head of a house in Manasseh—1 Chron. 5:24. One named Jeremiah, a Benjamite, came with others to David in Ziglag when he retreated from Saul—1 Chron. 12:14. There are two Gadite warriors named Jeremiah mentioned in 1 Chron. 12:10, 13. The Jeremiah of the house of the Rechabites is listed in Jer. 35:3. Then there was the Jeremiah of Libnah, the father of Hamutal, the wife of Josiah and the mother of Jehoahaz and Zedekiah—2 Ki. 23:31; 24:18.
Providence has kept this important record clear in affording the proof on which Jeremiah was the father of Namutal and the grandfather of Zedekiah. As if by divine anticipation of these false claims, this question is settled, like all others, by the Scriptures.
1. Jeremiah of Anathoth was the prophet of God and author of the book of Jeremiah's prophecies.
2. Jeremiah of Libnah was the father of Hamutal the mother of Zedekiah, hence, the grandfather of Zedekiah.
Over and above all of this, Zedekiah was not an heir to the Davidic throne, and could not convey the throne by right, even if he had a Tea; Nephi. The prophet Ezekiel denounced him as the prince of Nebuchadnezzar and renounced him as a Davidic king. Read it in Ezek. 21:25-27: "And thou, profane wicked prince of Israel, whose day is come, when iniquity shall have an end, Thus saith the Lord God; Remove the diadem, and take off the crown: this shall not be the same: exalt him that is low, and abase him that is high. I will overturn, overturn, overturn it: and it shall be no more, until he come whose right it is; and I will give it him."
The prophet of God rejected Zedekiah as a rightful king of Judah and declared that his throne was not the same. God ordered his diadem removed and his throne overturned. "Remove the diadem, and take off: the crown." For vehement emphasis the prophet proclaimed God's pronouncement to "overturn, overturn, overturn it" until the One should come "whose right it is." By no stretch of perfervid imagination could the phrase "until he come whose right it is" be made to mean the king of England! It is obviously a prophetic reference to Jesus Christ, who is the only rightful claimant and reigning occupant of the divine throne of David, the location of which is not on earth but in heaven, and the dominion of which is not temporal but spiritual.
The last man to occupy the earthly Davidic throne was Jeconiah, who was called Coniah. Of him the prophet said in Jer. 22:28-30: "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."
Coniah was not congenitally childless. His physical sons are named in the records, one of whom was. Zedekiah. But he was childless in that he had no successor to the throne, for no man of his seed, no descendant of Coniah, could ever occupy David's throne on the earth. The earthly throne of David became extinct with Coniah. Zedekiah did not occupy it—he was the "profane prince" of Nebuchadnezzar, and his throne was overturned. So if king George of Britain, or any other king or queen of England, is a descendant of Zedekiah, he or she would of necessity be a descendant of Coniah also—and Jeremiah said that no man of his seed could ever occupy David's throne on the earth. By their own table of genealogies the Anglo-Israelists have~ dethroned king George. Furthermore, by putting Zedekiah in their version of the genealogies of Matthew and Luke, they cannot consistently deny that Jesus Christ is the seed of Coniah, thereby forcing upon themselves the admission that Jesus Christ cannot occupy the Davidic throne on the earth.
The idea that king George is holding the throne of David in London, until Jesus Christ comes to take it, turns out to be sheer Anglo-Israel falsehood, the product of their garbled genealogies and perverted prophecies.
This concludes the analysis of the proposition in its various phases, as affirmed by the Anglo-Israelists, and I shall now turn to some of their main arguments for a detailed refutation of their claims.
III. THE ETHNOLOGICAL ARGUMENT
This particular so-called argument of the Anglo-Israelites is a thing of which their own speakers know very little and a thing of which their audiences as a rule know nothing. But I will point out their stereotyped, cut and dried chatter on "ethnology."
(1) The gist of the argument.
It runs on this wise:
(2) The asserted proof.
Their first line of assertions, which they always substitute for proof, is found in what is called racial resemblance. It is an argument on physiognomy. For instance: Abraham's wife, Sarah, was fair. Laban, her brother, means white. Leah, Jacob's wife, was "tender eyed"—meaning that she was a blonde. Rachel, Isaac's wife, was beautiful, also a blond -and "gentlemen prefer blondes," you know—therefore—we are it! A similar line of argument ( ?) based on similarity could as well follow this pattern: David means "ruddy"—therefore, the king of England is redheaded!
Their second line of assertions is found in what is known as racial nomenclature. That is, the names of places in various countries. This attachment of names appears to be to places, however, instead of persons. For instance, the ten tribes left their marks in names. The name of the tribe of Dan is found in the name of a country called Denmark—actually Dan-mark. Then again, Dan has put his mark on a city called London— actually, Lon-dan. Anothcr city marked by Dan is Edinburgh —actually E-dan-burgh.
Here a few more questions push up. According to that line of argument to prove that Israel is in England and adjacent territory, what about such names in England as Birmingham? Did Ham get his mark on the Englishman, too? He must be quite a mixed up person. Then, what about taking in some Africans and Egyptians ? For instance: Dan-ikil—Dan-ikil is a tribe in northeast Africa. So Dan marked the Africans as well as the Englishmen. Then Din-ka—actually Dan-ka—belongs to the Nile section; and Don-gola—Dan-gola?—is also in Egypt. Did Dan mark the blacks and the browns, as well as the fair, in his racial nomenclature perambulations? Besides all of that, why not take in some of Hitler's "yellow aryans" in the deal, for Japan could as well be a derivation of Japheth—Japan, you see? And Manchuria could very easily descend from Manasseh—Manchuria, you know? So after all, these British-Israel~sts might be wrong about Great Britain being Ephraim and the U. S. A. being Manasseh—may be Japan is little Manasseh, and he doesn't like it because Ephraim was so much "greater" than Manasseh, so he is trying to do something about it—? Plausible, isn't is ? About as plausible as Israelism is silly, based on racial resemblance and racial nomenclature.
Their argument on these points of "ethnology" will take in brown races of the Egyptians, the dark faces of Africans, and the yellow midgets of the "Rising Sun." Black Ephraim! Brown Manasseh! Yellow Israelites! That is the color line
Anglo-Israelism leaves on Israel after their argument on the ethnology of resemblance and nomenclature. Anglo-Israelism is pure guesswork, unsupported by either historical or ethnological proof—and certainly without Bible proof.
IV. THE PHILOLOGICAL ARGUMENT
Here again they enter into a field concerning which their own debaters and writers are without expert knowledge. They are not specialists in these fields at all—yet they would speak as one having authority, as skilled experts, in branches of research concerning which they are as unschooled and unskilled as a layman in the field of sciences. But we will notice their claims concerning philology.
(1) The affinity of language.
The claim is that racial relationships lie in affinities in language, or vocabularies. The Hebraic in sound and sense, it is claimed, is Saxon—so Saxons are Hebraic, therefore Israel. This argument becomes a tacit admission that Anglo-Israelism is a doctrine that no English reader could ever learn from the English Bible. The one hundred and forty-eight translators of the King James and the American Standard versions did not translate the British-Israel idea into our English texts.
Here is a sample of an Anglo-Israel argument. In the magazine DESTINY, the leading Anglo-Israel publication, we have the following: "The ancient British language is closely related to the Hebrew"—Destiny, page 367. Therefore, the conclusion goes, the British people, with us as near neighbors, are Israelites. But we could just as well say that the English language is closely related to Latin; therefore, we are Romans. And the French language is closely related to the Spanish; therefore Frenchmen are Spaniards. Or, if the French wish to turn the argument around, the Spaniards are Frenchmen. The fact is that only in isolated islands, where there has been no contact with the civilized world for generations, could a language be found that would not have words similar to other languages.
(2) The similarity of sound.
It is claimed that there are one hundred and forty words, in the Hebrew and English that are similar in sound. Countering this claim, however, it has been stated that only a small percent of the words claimed would actually check with lexical authority. But even if so, comparing the Hebrew with the German, Greek, Latin, Arabic and Syrian, there are even a greater number of similar words. The Hebrew descended directly from the Aramean, which is the oldest language on earth, and it is possible to find similarities of the same nature in every language on earth. The English language itself is mixed up with the Norman, Scandinavian and later, the French.
If the Hebrew and ancient British prove the British people to be Israelites, then the Hebrew and the Aramaic prove the Arabs to be Israelites. If not, why not?
(3) Attachment to the Hebrew scriptures.
It is argued by British-Israelists that the attachment of the people of England to the scriptures is due to the similarity of the English language to the Hebrew. If that be true, then what is the reason for German attachment to the scriptures? It is a known fact that all through the centuries, before and after the time of Martin Luther, Germany has furnished some of the most learned and pious scholars and commentators the religious world has ever known. Philip Schaff, renowned scholar, historian, Bible commentator, and chairman of the revision committee of the American Standard Revised Version was a German. Lange, Olshausen, Hengstenburg, Meyer—and names too numerous to mention—were all Germans. It will not be disputed that the Germany of past centuries was the cradle of the reformation and has been the battleground where many victories were won for the Bible and Christianity. It cannot be shown that England has contributed more in devotion' to the scriptures than even Germany of the past, no matter what the Huns, Teutons and warlords of the German military have made of the nation today. The argument will work both ways.
There is no argument to be based on similarity of sound, affinity of speech, or of one nation's attachment to scriptures, that can favor Anglo-Israelism. It is nothing short of an admission of weakness and a lack of something conclusive for such flimsy evidences to be offered in support of a system making such bold and pretentious claims. We repeat that only in the isolated islands of the earth, where for many generations the inhabitants have had no intercourse or contact with civilization, could any language be found that was not in some respects related to and similar to other languages.
The historical, ethnological and philological arguments of the Anglo-Israelists will not stand the test of investigation. In these fields they have made a complete flop. And we shall now see that they can do no better when it comes to the Biblical argument.
V. THE BIBLICAL ARGUMENT
The Anglo-Israel plan, like all other systems of prophetic vagaries, is to indiscriminately quote Old Testament prophecies and assert their application to the particular theory being promoted. We shall now point out their misquotations and misapplication of certain Old Testament passages.
(1) The seed of Isaac—Gen. 21:912.
In the twenty-first chapter of Genesis is related the story of Ishmael and Isaac. When Ishmael, the son of Abraham by Hagar, was seen mocking Isaac, Sarah the wife of Abraham, and mother of Isaac, ordered Abraham to "cast out this bondwoman and her son: for the son of this bondwoman shall not be heir with my son, even with Isaac." The thing grieved Abraham because Ishmael was his son. But God said unto Abraham "in all that Sarah hath said unto thee, hearken unto her voice; for in Isaac shall thy seed be called." So Anglo-Israelists assert
I that this passage means that a nation would be named Isaac
—"in Isaac shall thy seed be called"—and Saxon means "Isaac-sons," or Saxsons, hence the Saxons are Israel.
But the text does not say, or even hint, that a nation would be called Isaac, even if Saxon meant Isaac, which it does not. The text says that his seed should be called in Isaac. Fortunately, we do not need an Anglo-Israelist to tell us what it means —the New Testament tells us. In Rom. 9:68 Paul writes as follows: "For they are not all Israel which are of Israel: neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children; but, in Isaac shall thy seed be called. That is, they which are children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed."
That passage is fatal. After quoting Gen. 21:12, "In Isaac shall thy seed be called," Paul added, "That is"—that is, what? "That is, they which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God." And then, "but the children of the promise are counted for the seed." It simply means that Isaac, the son of promise, was to be the head of the spiritual race, or nation. That is—they that are of the flesh, these are not the children of God. According to Paul Anglo-Israelists are not the children of God, by their own argument, for they insist that they are of the flesh. And since Paul plainly says that Ishmael stands for the flesh, and the Anglo-Israelists insist on being a fleshly nation, according to Paul the Anglo-Israelists are Ishmaelites! So they are not Isaac-sons at all.
In Heb. 11:1819 the apostle again quoted "in Isaac shall thy seed be called" and said, "accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure." Here the apostle makes Isaac the type of Christ, the head of the spiritual nation, "the true Israel of God." It is certainly a vague and farfetched argument which attempts to make Isaac's seed mean Anglo-Saxon Israel.
(2) The appointed place—2 Sam. 7:10-14.
It is argued by the Anglo-Israelists that God's promise to David to "appoint a place for my people Israel" meant a place for the Anglo-Saxon people. Let us read the passage.
"Moreover I will appoint a place for my people Israel, and I will plant them, that they may dwell in a place of their own, and move no more; neither shall the children of wickedness afflict them any more, as before time, and as since the time that I commanded judges to be over my people Israel, and have caused thee to rest from all shine enemies. Also the Lord telleth thee that he will make thee an house. And when thy days be fulfilled, 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 for ever. I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men."
Several comments are in order on this passage:
Since they dote so heavily on the "Hebrew" language, we may pertinently ask the Anglo-Israelist what tense is "will appoint" in the original—the Hebrew? Let him read the passage in the Hebrew. It reads: "I have appointed thee a place." I call attention to this fact merely for Anglo-Israel consumption. The English rendering is good enough for me. The rendering "will appoint" only indicates that the place would be appointed from the time of the judges, continuously, hence the future tense was applicable to the idea set forth—a continuous appointment from the time of the judges, and the place appointed was where the temple of Solomon, the house of God, was to be built.
Where, then, was the appointed place ? Let us compare some passages.
First, Joshua called it "the land which he sware to give unto their fathers . . . and they possessed it . . . and the Lord gave them rest round about."—Josh. 21:4345. It was the land of Canaan, not the British Isles, that God "sware to give unto their fathers"—referring to the promise made to Abraham.
Second, Nehemiah said it was the "place" to which Israel returned after their captivity, when God "gathered them from thence" to "bring them unto the place that I have chosen"—Neh. 1:8-10. And Nehemiah further said that it had been done when the children of Israel, the Jews, returned from Babylon to the land of Judea. Furthermore, he referred to them, the Jews, as thy servants and thy people" whom God "had redeemed" from captivity and brought them to the place he had "chosen" and "appointed." So the "appointed place" was the land of Palestine, and "his people Israel" were those who had returned from captivity from Babylon and everywhere they had been scattered.
Third, Hezekiah the king wrote letters to "all Israel and Judah,' and "also to Ephraim and Manasseh," reminding them of God s promise that they should "come again into this land" —2 Chron. 30:1, 9, 11, 18.
That the ten tribes were represented in this call of Hezekiah is clearly shown by reference to "Ephraim and Manasseh" in verse 1, and to "divers (many) of Assher and Manasseh and Zebulun" in verse 11, and "a multitude of people, even many of Ephraim, and Manasseh, and Issachar, and Zebulun" in verse 18. All of these tribes answered the call of Hezekiah to come to the house of the Lord in the "place" that God had appointed, referred to as "this land."
Incidentally, the passage says that these tribes were "humble, which might prove that the Anglo-Israelists are not they! For if there has ever been a party built on pride, and a tribe composed of egotists, Anglo-Israelists are both
So "all Israel," with the ten tribes mentioned along with Judah, came into the place that God had appointed, which Hezekah said was "this land," where the house of God, the temple, was built, the land in which he was king, the land that was promised to the fathers, and which they had then possessed— the land of Palestine, of course—not the British Isles.
Fourth, Jeremiah said concerning this "appointed place" that God would "cause" Israel to "dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers" after they should return from their captivity Jer. 7:7.
The prophet told Israel of their impending exile, described its duration and their return, and said "then"—note it—"then will I cause you to dwell in this place." To what place did Israel return? In what place did they dwell after they returned? The appointed place" was the place to which they returned from captivity and the land in which they dwelt "then"—and it was not the British Isles "by a long shot."
Fifth, Ezekiel said that God would open the grave of Israel's captivity, cause them to come out, and place them in their own land again—Ezek. 37:11-14.
In their captivity in Babylon Israel was represented as being in their graves. But God said to them, "I will open your graves . . . cause you to come out . . . bring you into the land of Israel . . . ye shall live . . . and I will place you in your own land." Anybody who can see through a barrel with both ends knocked out can see that this "place" was the land of Palestine, and that "Israel" was simply the Jews.
Sixth, Ezra referred to the proclamation of Cyrus for the release of the Jews from Babylon, which was addressed to "all his people," and named the place where the house of God was built as "the land of Judah"—Ezra 1:13. So the "appointed place" was the land of Judah. And if the ten tribes were included in the expression "of all his people" among "all the kingdoms of the earth," they were included in this emancipation proclamation.
Thus Joshua, Nehemiah, Hezekiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel and Ezra, all bear testimony as to what the "appointed place" was, and where it was, and to the fact that the ten tribes were in it. Anglo-Israelism to the contrary, notwithstanding.
The appointed place was the land promised to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. The promise was made to Abraham in Gen. 12 and was repeated to Isaac in Gen. 26:24. The promise was next repeated to Jacob in Gen. 35:1012, and finally this same promise was repeated by Jacob to Joseph, as having been handed down to him from Abraham, when he blessed the sons of Joseph, in Gen. 48:34. These facts prove conclusively that the only land or place God ever promised to the seed of Abraham, Jacob, Isaac, or Isaac's sons, was the land of Canaan, and according to the combined testimony of the Old Testament writers—their seed possessed it and dwelt in it.
(3) The gate of his enemies—Gen. 22:1514
Anglo-Israelists assert that "the gate" of this passage refers to Gilbraltar, Suez, and Singapore, as "gates of enemies," and that Great Britain is the "seed" that "possesses" these "gates" of the enemy. They base their theory on these verses in Genesis 22, which we will now read and examine. "And the angel of the Lord called unto Abraham out of heaven 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, shine 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 seashore; 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."
What did God mean when he said that Abraham's "seed" should possess the "gate" of his enemies? Well, the very next verse reads: "And in thy seed shall all nations of the earth be blessed"—a repetition of Gen. 12:3, which we are plainly told in Gal. 3:8 refers to Jesus Christ. Let us take a look at that angle of the matter.
Passages on the "Seed" Compared:
If seed in Gen. 12:3 and Gen. 21:12 meant Christ, why cannot Gen. 22:17 mean Christ?
Passages on "Enemies" Compared:
Let me state the basis for the comparison to quicken interest. The word enemies is used in the sense of adversary. The word gate refers to power over, dominion. The word seed, as shown, had a future reference to Jesus Christ. The promise "thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies" meant that Jesus Christ should conquer and possess dominion over all his foes.
Let us see if a comparison of passages does not bear out this view of the matter.
David here declared that Christ would thus rule in the midst of his enemies while he is priest after the order of Melchizedek, verse 4, which according to Hebrews 4, 5 and 7 is now. This psalm is also quoted in Acts 2, by the apostle Peter, as having been fulfilled in Pentecost. The 110th psalm is also quoted in Heb. 1 :13; Heb. 5:5; and Heb. 10:13; showing that Christ is the seed, that he has made his enemies his footstool, and therefore t he seed does "possess the gate of his enemies."
This comparison of passages is the positive proof that Gen. 22:17 does not refer to the Anglo-Saxons as the "seed" nor to the outposts of Great Britain as the gates of his enemies. The assertions of Anglo-Israelists to the contrary, notwithstanding.
(4) The isles of the sea—Isa. 11:11.
The Anglo-Israelists assert that "the isles of the sea" in Isa. 11:11, Isa. 24:15 and Isa. 49:20 designate England as the land in which Israel should dwell. That you may see how "plausible" the assertion sounds, let us read these verses in their order mentioned.
"And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the, remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea"— Isa. 11:11.
"Wherefore glorify ye the Lord in the fires, even the name of the Lord God of Israel in the isles of the sea"—Isa. 24:15.
"The children which thou shalt have, after thou hast lost the other, shall say again in shine ears, The place is too strait for me: give place to me that I may dwell"—Isa. 49:20.
According to the marginal note in the text the expression "isles" in these passages is defined to mean "coast lands." The United States has more coast land than England, as numerous other countries also have. The "isles of the sea" evidently denote the farthermost and uttermost parts of the earth.
A short study of the passages will reveal the fallacy of the British-Israel interpretations.
The "isles of the sea" simply referred to the "inhabitants of the coasts," and bringing Israel back "to their own border" took place when they returned from the North "to the land that I have given for an inheritance unto your fathers."—Jer. 3:18. That land, of course, was the land promised to Abraham, the land of Canaan—Palestine. We are plainly told that the Edict of Cyrus the Great, king of Persia, fulfilled all of these prophecies spoken by Jeremiah concerning Israel and her land—a blanket fulfillment—to which reference has several times been made in this series of addresses. Read 2 Chron. 36:2023 and Ezra 1:13.
(5) The ships of Tarshish—Isa. 23:1-10.
Anglo-Israelists claim that the "land of Tarshish" is the British Isles and "the ships of Tarshish" are the British Navy —the greatest marine power, we are told, and therefore "the appointed place." That line of talk may have seemed a little more plausible a few years ago than now, but it is about to become obsolete since the British Navy is not now the "greatest world marine" and hence may turn out not to be "the appointed place" at all.
Since the Isa. 23:110 passage is one of their most important texts, let us read the whole of it, with proper attention: "The burden of Tyre. Howl, ye ships of Tarshish; for it is laid waste, so that there is no house, no entering in: from the land of Chittim it is revealed to them. Be still, ye inhabitants of the Isle: thou whom the merchants of Zidon, that pass over the sea, have replenished. And by great waters the seed of Sihor, the harvest of the river, is her revenue; and she is a mart of nations. Be thou ashamed, O Zidon: for the sea hath spoken, even the strength of the sea, saying, I travail not, nor bring forth children, neither do I nourish up young men, nor bring up virgins. As at the report concerning Egypt, so shall they be sorely pained at the report of Tyre. Pass ye over to Tarshish; howl ye inhabitants of the isle. Is this your joyous city, whose antiquity is of ancient days? Her own feet shall carry her afar off to sojourn. Who hath taken this counsel against Tyre, the crowning city, whose merchants are princes? Whose traffickers are the honourable of the earth? The Lord of hosts hath purposed
it, to stain the pride of all glory, and to bring into contempt all the honourable of the earth. Pass through thy land as a river, O daughter of Tarshish; there is no more strength."
A good look at this asserted prooftext will be sufficient to
convince the candid that their deductions are wholly wrong.
1. The people of Tarshish were Gentiles, not Israelites—
And they shall bring all your brethren for an offering unto the Lord out of all nations . . . to my holy mountain Jerusalem, saith the Lord." That is a poor text for British Israelism. It has God bringing his people Israel to Jerusalem instead of to the British Isles, and the Gentiles among the nations to be punished as fleeing to Tarshish, Pul and Lud. Then in the next verses of the same chapter it describes the temple being rebuilt in Jerusalem and the Jews resuming the observance of the new moon and the sabbath ceremonies of the law of Moses. All of these passages have to do with Israel's captivity and return, and contain not even a remote hint at the contentions of Anglo-British Israelism. But a visionary speculator does not need a "hint" when he goes in for manufacturing theories—he just needs a theory!
(6) The house of Israel—Matt. 10:56.
In sending the twelve disciples forth under the limited commission, Jesus said to them: "GO not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel." On this point Anglo-Israelists make four of their major claims, which I wish to examine, one by one.
First: The claim that the "house of Israel" does not include the Jews.
In the Anglo-Israel official magazine DESTINY, October 1943, page 347, this statement is found: "In that house there are no Jews." Again, in the same issue of that publication, page 364, this statement is found: "The ten tribes were not in Babylon."
So what? According to them, there were no Jews in the house of Israel, for it is composed only of the ten tribes. But the ten tribes were not in Babylon, they assert. Then the house of Israel could hot have been in Babylon, if their claim is true. But the Jews were in Babylon. And the house of Israel was in Babylon. But Anglo-Israelists tell us that "no Jew" was in the house of Israel. Then who were in "that house" in Babylon? If the ten tribes were not in Babylon, and "no Jew" was ever in the house of Israel, but the house of Israel was in Babylon—of whom was the house of Israel in Babylon composed? Not the ten tribes, for they tell us they were not there. Not the Jews, for they tell us "in that house there are no Jews."
But the Bible says plainly that the house of Israel was in Babylon. Let us look at the evidence in Ezekiel. Bear in mind that Ezekiel was himself in Babylon with the Jews—but Anglo-Israelists insist that they were not in the house. Only the ten tribes are in the house of Israel, in their theory, and "the ten tribes were not in Babylon," says DESTINY. All right, now hear Ezekiel on the point, as God commands him, in Babylon:
Now, the Anglo-Israel authority says that "the ten tribes were not in Babylon." Therefore, those who were in Babylon were of necessity the Jews. But it was the house of Israel in Babylon, to whom Ezekiel was commanded to speak, and to them only, dwelling where he was by the River Chebar. So the house of Israel was in Babylon, and the Jews were in it—not merely in it, they were it.
But Ezekiel goes farther than that. He tells us plainly that he was "in the midst" of the house of Israel in Babylon. The people in whose "midst" he was dwelling in Babylon were the house of Israel, for he was in the midst of it. Let us see.
So it is plainly stated there that Ezekiel dwelt "in the midst" of a rebellious house; and "the rebellious house" was the "house of Israel"; therefore Ezekiel was dwelling in the midst of the house of Israel—in Babylon. But Anglo-Israelists say that the ten tribes were not in Babylon. But Ezekiel says the house of Israel was in Babylon. Anglo-Israelists say there were "no Jews" in that "house." But since the ten tribes were not in Babylon, it follows that those in Babylon were "Jews," so anybody that can see through a ladder with rungs two feet apart ought to see that the house of Israel in Babylon Were the Jews of the captivity. So the Jews were "in that house" and the Anglo-Israelists are wrong. Their vaunted publication DESTINY made an egregious mix statement, which is a very mild way to put it, and ought to print an apology in their columns for their ignorance.
But notice again: The elders of Israel came to Ezekiel in Babylon. "Then came certain of the elders of Israel unto me, and sat before me."—Ezekiel 14:1. There in Babylon by the river Chebar, where Ezekiel sat, the elders of Israel came to him. Were these "elders of Israel" in "the house of Israel"? Read the verse 6: "Therefore speak unto them, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; every man of the house of Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart . . . and cometh to the prophet, I the Lord will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols." Then read verse 6: "Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord God; repent and turn yourselves from idols."
So "the elders of Israel" in Babylon, who were inquiring of Ezekiel, were in the "house of Israel," and Ezekiel was himself "in the midst" of the "house of Israel" in Babylon. But Anglo-Israel authority says that the ten tribes were not in Babylon. Therefore these "elders of Israel" in Babylon were admittedly Jews, and they were "in the house of Israel" in Babylon—therefore, there were Jews in that house. Anglo-Israelism to the contrary, notwithstanding.
In the light of all of this, read another statement from DESTINY, October 1943, page 364: "From the time of the separation of the ten tribes under Jereboam, the northern kingdom is almost invariably referred to as Israel, the house of Israel, never once referred to as Jews . . . house of Israel and house of Judah . . . distinct and separate."
The article in DESTINY then adds: "One has only to read the prophets to see this." And I will add: Yes—the prophet Ezekiel, for instance! It is difficult indeed to "see" how any man with enough intelligence to write an article to a magazine, much less to be the editor of one, could read the prophet Ezekiel and still contend that the house of Israel was not in Babylon and that the Jews were not in it. The adage that there are none so blind as those who will not see, must be a true one.
This disposes of the first of the major claims based on "the lost sheep of the house of Israel" of Matt. 10, so we advance to the next.
Second: The claim that the ten tribes did not return to Palestine under the edict of Cyrus.
Hear DESTINY again: "The ten tribes were not in Babylon . . . There is not a word about the ten tribes, nor any part of them returning."—Oct. 1943, Page 364.
Now let us put Jeremiah on the witness stand and hear him testify:
Now read 2 Chron. 36:2023:
"And them that had escaped from the sword carried he away to Babylon; where they were servants to him and his sons until the reign of the kingdom of Persia: To fulfil the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah, until the.` land had enjoyed her sabbaths: for as long as she lay desolate': she kept sabbath to fulfil threescore and ten years. Now in the first year of Cyrus, king of Persia, that the word of the Lord spoken by the mouth of Jeremiah might be accomplished, the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout his kingdom, and put it also in writing saying, Thus saith Cyrus king of Persia, All the kingdoms of the earth hath the Lord God of heaven given me: and he hath charged me to build him an house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Who is there among you of all his people? The Lord his God be with him, and let him go up."
It is here stated that Cyrus had been given "all the kingdoms of the earth" and this proclamation was made "throughout all his kingdom." The decree was therefore made in the north country as it was in Babylon, and included the ten tribes. But as the passage in 2 Chron. 36. and Ezra 1 plainly affirm that this decree of Cyrus "fulfilled" and "accomplished" what Jeremiah had spoken concerning this thing, and Jeremiah himself said that it fulfilled "all my words," it of necessity fulfilled what he said in Jer. 23 :78 concerning the return of Israel from "the north country" and "from all countries whither I had driven them."
"One has only to read the prophets," you see, "to have a clear grasp of this"—so said the British-Israel authority in a careless moment!
The statement of Anglo-Israel DESTINY that "there is not a word about the ten tribes, nor any part of them returning" is an inexcusable assertion, and is the type of religious falsehoods that keeps so many people in ignorance and error. Truly, "they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch."
While on this point of the return of the ten tribes, let us put the prophet Ezekiel back on the stand for further testimony:
Ezekiel 37 thus gives the vision of the "valley of dry bones." Verses 110 describe the valley full of dry bones; Ezekiel "prophesied upon them, and breath came into them, and they lived, and stood upon their feet, an exceeding great army." Then God said to Ezekiel, "These bones are the whole house of Israel— therefore prophesy and say unto them . . . behold O my people, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel."
There are three things of special significance in this chapter: (1) The bones were the whole house of Israel—verse 11. (2) Their captivity was represented as being in their graves, and the return to their land was their resurrection from their graves—verse 12. (3) Taking the two sticks, one of Joseph, for Ephraim, and one of Judah, and joining them into one stick, signified the uniting of the house of Israel and the house of Judah into one house the merging of the ten tribes into Judah, which became "the whole house of Israel"—so that after the Return there were no longer two houses or nations, but "one nation in the land" and "they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all."
That settles it. "One has only to read the prophets to have a clear grasp" of this, according to DESTINY, you know! Thus we have disposed of the second major claim of the Israelists on the expression "lost sheep of the house of Israel" in Matt. 10, and we proceed to the next.
Third: The claim that the ten tribes did not cease to exist, after the captivity, as a distinct and separate people.
Under the caption "Who and Where Are the Lost Ten Tribes?" an Anglo-Israel authority deposes as follows: "Where are they? They are somewhere on earth. They are a distinct and separate people." DESTINY, October 1943, page 362.
On this point let us bring the prophet Hosea to the witness stand. His testimony, added to that of Jeremiah and Ezekiel, settles the issue, and shows the Anglo-Israel claim to be absolutely false.
Let us read with due deliberation here Hos. 1:211:
"The beginning of the word of the Lord by Hosea. And the Lord said to Hosea, Go, take unto thee a wife of whoredoms and children of whoredoms: for the land hath committed great whoredom, departing from the Lord. So he went and took Gomer the daughter of Diblaim; which conceived and bare him a son. And the Lord said unto him, Call his name Jezreel; for yet a little while, and I will avenge the blood of Jezreel upon the house of Jehu, and will cause to cease the kingdom of the house of Israel. And it shall come to pass at that day, that I will break the bow of Israel in the valley of Jezreel. And she conceived again, and bare a daughter. And God said unto him, Call her name Lornhamah: 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, and will save them by the Lord their God, and will not save them by bow, nor by sword, nor by battle, by horses, nor by horsemen. Now when she had weaned Lornhamah, she conceived and bare a son. Then said God, Call his name Loammi: 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 sand 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. Then shall the children of Judah and the children of Israel be gathered together, and appoint themselves one head, and they shall come up out of the land; for great shall be the day of Jezreel."
The following points, gathered from these verses, must be evident:
We challenge any man to show where Israel was ever promised a king on earth after the captivity. The earthly king was a rebellion, never a part of the promise, nor of the original setup, and an earthly king has nothing to do with the fulfillment of God's promises to Israel. From this point the prophecy passes to the spiritual, when they should seek the Lord, and David their king.—Hos. 3 :45. "The children of Israel shall abide many days without king, and without prince, and without sacrifice and without pillar, and without ephod or seraphim: Afterward shall the children of Israel return and seek the Lord their God and David their king, and shall come with fear unto the Lord and to his goodness in the latter days." Surely no one would deny that this refers to Christ. The most ardent literalist would hardly be bold enough to say that this passage means the "literal" David. It was Christ, the new David, the spiritual David, whom they would seek, after having been "many days" without a king, without sacrifice, without ephod, without teraphim. Furthermore, this would be "afterward" or "in the latter days," and it is clearly a Messianic prophecy, referring to the first coming of the kord. It has therefore been fulfilled.
Another passage in Jeremiah adds strength and beauty to these prophetic visions of the Messiah, the David Christ, soon to become their King. I read from Jer. 33:1518: "In those days, and at that time, will I cause the Branch of righteousness to grow up unto David; and he shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land. In those days shall Judah be saved, and Jerusalem shall dwell safely: and this is the name wherewith she shall be called, the Lord our righteousness. For thus saith the Lord, David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel; neither shall the priests the Levites want a man before me to offer burnt offerings, and to kindle meat offerings and to do sacrifice continually." The expressions "at that time" and "in the latter days" and "in those days" clearly show that the prophecy refers to Christ, that he would come into the world, be their king, and stay their king, and therefore "David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne of, the house of Israel." When? "In those days"—the days of that Righteous Branch, Jesus Christ. Why? Because Christ as king, is king eternally, just as he is "priest forever after the order of Melchizedek"—both king and priest, at the same time, with no change to take place in priesthood or kingship—hence, forever, continually. The prophecy has shifted to the spiritual. The fleshly kingdom and people are no more. And it has been fulfilled in Jesus Christ. He became king when he became priest, and he will be king and priest continually until time is no more.
Reverting again to the Hosea 1, those who were not his people, became his people—the Gentiles. Israel and Judah also became one people under one Head. The church is now the true Israel of God, the elect race, the royal priesthood, the holy nation, according to Peter—1 Peter 2:9-11. And Paul said the prophecy of Hosea was fulfilled when the Gentiles were given the opportunity to "seek the Lord" and "trust" in Christ—Rom. 9:24-27. If Christ is not the fulfillment of these prophecies, Gentiles do not now "trust" in him, and cannot now "seek the Lord."
Anglo-Israelism is a system of literalism which denies the New Testament application of these prophecies. With reference to them Paul says, "as he saith also in Hosea" and "as Isaiah said before"—and that settles it. Anglo-Israelism to the contrary, notwithstanding.
Having now disposed of three of these major claims of Anglo-Israelism, based on Matt. 10, I proceed to the last one.
Fourth: The claim that the lost sheep of the house of Israel in the New Testament were the ten tribes only.
Let us read again, in full, this passage which by the Anglo
Israelists is considered so important to their theory: "These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of "Israel."— Matt. 10:56.
Some final comments on the passage are in order:
1. The disciples were to "go" to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Now they had to know who and where they were in order to do it. If the disciples knew who they were and where they were, they could not have obeyed the command there in the British-Israel sense. If they did not know who and where
they were, they could not have obeyed the command there in Judea and Galilee. If the lost sheep of the house of Israel meant the ten tribes, and they were in the British Isles, the disciples had quite a journey to "go" when they preached to them. But the fact is that in obeying his commission the disciples did not leave the borders of Judea and Galilee. Read it in Matt. 10: 23: "For verily I say unto you, ye shall not have gone through the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come." The "cities of Israel" were not the cities of Great Britain, and the "men of Israel" were not Englishmen.
It is furthermore stated that Jesus himself was sent only to "the lost sheep of the house of Israel."—Matt. 15:24. Was Jesus sent only to the ten tribes? It is a known fact that he was never outside the land of Palestine. So the "lost sheep of the house of Israel" definitely refers to Jews in Judea and Galilee, and the house of Israel was simply the Jews, all the Jews. The word lost simply describes that condition.
So as the matter stands, the ones to whom Jesus and the disciples preached during his ministry on the earth were the "house of Israel" and the places where they did the preaching were referred to as "the cities of Israel." So the house of Israel, including the ten tribes, was in Palestine during the personal ministry of Jesus Christ on earth. The claims of Anglo-Israelism to the contrary, notwithstanding.
Having now disposed of the five major claims of Anglo-Israelism concerning the house of Israel, I shall now offer some final objections to this British theory.
VI. INDICTMENTS AGAINST ANGLO-ISRAELISM
It can be readily seen by all who have followed closely the arguments set forth, that Anglo-Israelism is a British doctrine. It originated in England and spread to Canada, Australia, New Zealand and other British dominions. Its first foothold in the United States was in the New England states among the immigrants from the British Isles or those not far removed from England's ancestry and British pride. Its strongest appeal therefore is to Anglo-Saxon glory. On this basis I list the following indictments against this foreign vanity:
(1) It is a System of national religion.
Here I quote again from Anglo-Israel's official organ: "Destiny identifies the Anglo-Saxon-Celtic and kindred peoples as the house of Israel under the leadership of the U. S. A. and Great Britain."—DESTINY, Oct., 1943, page 336. Again: "These two nations are the greatest power on earth and being of the stock of Israel are fulfilling the many prophecies of Israel's greatness in these latter times."—DESTINY, page 337. More: "Our responsibility in these matters is deepened by the fact that the Anglo-Saxons are the people with whom God made his unalterable covenant, and upon whom he laid his law."—DESTINY, page 336. Thus does DESTINY, the official publication of Anglo-Israelism, testify to the nationalism of the system, thus pleading guilty to the charges, and in its admissions of nationalism it renders itself incompatible with Christianity.
But there is yet more evidence. Doctor John Matthews of Los Angeles, is a recognized authority of Anglo-Israelism. He deposes as follows: "Beginning the kingdom at mount Sinai, it was later removed to and continued in Ireland . . . Later of the royal line in Scotland . . . and now we have king George VI ruling over the house of Israel on the British throne."—Radio address, August 21, 1943. This radio address was printed and distributed both at public meetings and through the mail. It is what Anglo-Israelists believe—namely, that king George VI occupies David's literal throne in England and "rules over the house of Israel on the British throne." Hear this: "Queen Victoria, queen of England, knew that she had inherited the throne of David."—Dr. John Matthews, August 21, 1943.
Now, friends, ponder that assertion—study the meaning of that claim. If the house of Hanover (lately Brunswick) is the house of Israel, and the throne of England is the throne of David, where are we? If that is true, when the thirteen colonies rebelled against England, they rebelled against a divine throne, the throne of David. If that is true, then this nation of ours
the United States of America—was formed in rebellion against the divine throne of God on earth, and is being perpetuated in rebellion against that divine throne. And if that is true, the only way the condition could be cured would be for this nation to dissolve the Union and go back under the British crown! That is Anglo-Israelism. I am speaking to an American audience— what do you think about it? Whether Anglo-Israelists avow this consequence, as doubtless some of them in their hearts do, or whether they do not—it is the inevitable consequence of the theory.
The Anglo-Israel authority Odlum, page 180, virtually concedes this consequence in this commitment: "There is no escape. All must serve Israel. All are serving Britain. Britain is Israel." But hear DESTINY again: "God organized a government at Sinai, declaring that this government and people would be His servant race." Page 337. By that statement it is meant that Great Britain is that government and that people. Here it is: "What shall be after the duration? I can answer in one word—the establishment of the kingdom of God with the Israel people as its center, its driving force, in this divine earthly government."—Dr. John Matthews, May 22, 1943.
Anglo-Israelism thus seeks to re-establish the same kind of a national Israel that was taken away. It is precisely that government that was organized at Sinai that Paul contrasted with Jerusalem in Gal. 4. Hagar and Ishmael were used in that allegory to represent that government and that nation. There is no guess about it, that is precisely what Paul said. The two women were the two covenants- Sinai and Jerusalem. The two sons were the two nations fleshly and spiritual. Paul said, cast out the Sinai covenant and her son. British-Israelism seeks to keep it, and to re-establish that which Paul cast off. There-fore—Anglo-Israelism is a system of cast-off nationalism in religion.
(2) It is a system of race superiority.
One of the oldest authorities of British-Israelism is a book entitled "Anglo-Israelism," by Howlett. On page 66 of this book, Howlett deposes as follows: "It is the manifest destiny of both our race and our language to dominate the world." Again he says: "All India is studying English. In Japan it is taught in the national schools at government expense."—page 67. Compare that statement with some similar utterances in "Mein Kampf" by a man named Adolf Hitler Schicklegruber! Incidentally, we have the explanation now as to why Japan was teaching some of her citizens the English language a few years ago at government expense. They meant to have this government changed by now, thought they would be running things over here, and would need plenty of Japanese who could speak English. And, incidentally again, Anglo-Israelism teaches that very ambition to "dominate" all the world by universal government and language through Great Britain whom they style "British Israel." Therefore—the only difference between Anglo-Israelism and German Nazi-ism can be reduced to one question: Who is the master race?
Continuing the evidence, I shall call your attention to an-other British-Israel publication, entitled "The Morning Cometh." On page 2 of that publication I have gathered the following: "When Russia has completed her part in the purpose for which 'the three heads of eagles' were raised . . . she herself, as one of the three heads and part of the image of Dan. 2 and the 'second beast' of Dan. 7:5, will be destroyed, as God states that he will 'incite you (Go") and induce you, and bring you up from the far north and lead you to the hills of Israel,' where at Armageddon he will destroy Gog (Russia) and his army for their love of cruelty and anti-God and anti-Israel activities." This paragraph from this British-Israel authority teaches that Russia was being "led" and "induced" to bring her armies near England, "the hills of Israel," where God would arrange for Great Britain (Israel) to double-cross Russia, her ally, and destroy her! What a doctrine! The authority mentioned cites "Fenton's Translation"—their pet version of the scriptures— to prove it.
Then on page 48 of the same publication this Anglo-Israelist authority endorses the Hitler purge. Here it is: "It would appear that Hitler and Mussolini and the anti-semitism through-out the many European countries are the fulfillment of Jeremiah 16:16-17 . . . This prophecy was made in 601 B.C. after the 'Good Figs' of Jeremiah 24:1-7 had been deported out of the land some years earlier, and was directed against the "evil figs," i.e., the Jews, the remnant of Judah."
The hatred of the Jew is as deeply imbedded in the being of an Anglo-Israelist as it was in the bosom of Adolf Hitler. So they have Hitler carrying out God's will in getting rid of the "evil figs"—the Jews—while the "good figs" are the real Israelites, and he should not exterminate them. Who is it saying all of this? Not just some stray author without authority or endorsement. It is quoted from a book that bears the seal of "The British-Israel Association, Vancouver, B. C.," and is printed officially by that association for free distribution. The farther we go the worse the doctrine becomes, but we proceed to an-other indictment.
(3) It is a system of political propaganda.
All must be greatly impressed with the great modesty of these British-Israeliters, in their claims of British superiority over the U. S. A. on the ground that Ephraim should be greater than Manasseh! It is not because I particularly relish the reading of their phraseology that I am dishing out so much of it, but purely for its evidential value, that you may see the true character of this boasted, vaunted theory.
In "Morning Cometh," page 3, is found this statement: "Ephraim is placed before Manasseh, Great Britain and the United States respectively." So he respectfully, as well as respectively, assigned the United States to a rank of subordination to Great Britain. So we are just "little Israelites." On pages 48-49 this British-Israel authority advocates the complete over-throw of the United States monetary system. So if this "religion" should come to "dominate" what they call "Manasseh" —meaning us you can see what they would do to our government—they would liquidate it, for Odlum says "all must serve Israel . . . and Britain is Israel." Matthews declaims that "the British Empire is greater than the old Roman empire—three times greater."—August 21, 1943. And he is the one who has king George VI on David's throne over there holding it down until the Lord Jesus Christ gets here. Then, they think, George the Sixth will step off and Jesus Christ will step on! So the Lord Jesus Christ in that theory will simply become a British king on earth, occupying the throne of the Hanovers and Brunswicks transferred from London, England, to Jerusalem of Palestine.
But hear the Doctor John Matthews again: "Israel means ruling with God. When we English speaking peoples return to God and his laws, we shall then rule with God, rule the entire world. Dominion will be ours. Headship is conferred on us. We are an elect nation. There you are. What do you think these scriptures mean? As Israelites we can never know defeat. If we are Gentiles, we are already whipped to a standstill."— August 21, 1943. Now this: "We believe this war will be fought and won on the basis of Israel against Gentile dictators." —Matthews, May 22, 1943. There is an endless amount of such blatant blathering, revealing a sinister system of political religion, but we must pass.
(4) It is a system of speculative vagaries.
In some phases it is similar in character to recent advent cults whose names are legion, who fancy they can see in the signs of the times the date of the Lord's return.
In the British-Israel publication "Morning Cometh" the date for the millennium to begin was set for 1945. Before that publication was finished, before the latter part of it was printed, they changed the date to 1948. Yes, that is found in "Morning Cometh," page 25, then page 56. In the same publication, page 12, they placed the duration of the present war to 1!)53, and their date referred to the European war. It ended ahead of schedule, apparently. And to cap the climax, on page 57, they call their own doctrine "the British-Israel theory." Well, nothing in the Bible is a theory, I would most certainly say That is like Doctor John Matthews' "scriptural intimations'; and "strong historical proof" for his theory. The truth would require a revision of that statement to read "not one scriptural intimation" and "no historical hint."
(5) It is a system of rank materialism.
The Mormons claimed to be the ten tribes and built a fantastic, romantic story around the early Americans. Are the Anglo-Israelists trying to crash their party and steal their show ?
The Russellites claimed that Christ came in 1873 and that his kingdom became apparent in 1914 another fantasy of materialism. The Roman Catholic church claims to be the material kingdom of God on earth. That is confusing. The pope Pius is in Rome and king George is in London—and it is Pius XII versus George VI, both claiming the divine throne. So the Anglo-Israelists are just offering us another material kingdom with an earthly throne, and George VI is merely holding the seat for Jesus Christ. Therefore, Anglo-Israelism is no better than any other form of millennialism and premillennialism. All such theories are related, one no better than another, though some may be more or less ambitious in what they propose. It should serve to teach some misguided people in the church that premillennialism is a divers heresy and should be rejected, renounced and denounced in all of its forms.
(6) It is a system of British-Israel doubt.
In the publication, "Morning Cometh," published by the British-Israel Association of Greater Vancouver, the following expressions, and many others like them, occur seventy times in fifty-nine pages: "It appears," "it seems," "we infer," "may guess," "reasonably suppose," "venture to think," "not hard to believe," and it winds up by saying, "we may be wrong, but"!
They have more "ifs" and "buts" in their theory than the "origin of species," or the hypothesis of evolution, and like them, it was born in doubt, exists in doubt and is destined to die in its own doubt. In one hundred years of its existence it has not advanced beyond a mere speculation. Instead of calling it British-Israel truth as they are wont to do, it should be labeled the British-Israel delusion.
(7) Finally—the whole theory is a wasted effort.
After all the effort, if it could be proved that the Anglo-Saxons in general, Great Britain in particular, and little lend-lease U. S. A. Manasseh thrown in for Ephraim's good measure, are in reality the descendants of the ten tribes, it still would not follow that they are God's modern covenant people. God has no modern covenant people in any fleshly sense. An admission of the fleshly connection would only put the Anglo-Saxon people exactly where the Jews are—just has beens so far as the flesh IS concerned. Far from doing so, and as impossible as it IS to do so, if nevertheless we did concede the ten tribes contention we could still deny and disprove the main Anglo-Israel doctrine, i.e., that God has a fleshly people now, or that he ever will have another such people, and that David's throne is on earth now or ever will be on earth again.
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