Where are the lost Tribes of Israel?
Most Christians feel there are no lost tribes because they have been absorbed into other nations and as such are un-identifiable, or the lost tribes are now mixed in with the Jews. However the prophecies show a different picture.
"Therefore say, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD: "Although I have cast them far off among the Gentiles, and although I have scattered them among the countries, yet I shall be a little sanctuary for them in the countries where they have gone."‘ "Therefore say, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD: "I will gather you from the peoples, assemble you from the countries where you have been scattered, and I will give you the land of Israel." (Ezekiel 11:16-17 NKJV)
I believe that the lost tribes are still scattered and are identifiable by national traits. The remainder of this article is taken from a tape transcript given by Yair Davidi. He is a Jew who lives in Jerusalem and has a ministry (Brit-Am) devoted and dedicated to doing research on and spreading awareness of the Lost Tribes and their reunification with the house of Judah in the end of days. While Yair does not believe that Yeshua (Jesus) is the Messiah (Christ), His research is excellent and thought provoking.
The LOST TEN TRIBES in Prophecy: Part One.
Identifying Characteristics in Prophecy
Shalom! Yair Davidi speaking on behalf of Brit-Am Israel in Jerusalem. This is the first part of a two-part talk concerning the Ten Lost Tribes in Prophecy. This is not intended to be a thorough discussion of the subject but rather an Introduction that will highlight some important points that we all should be aware of.
Originally there were 12 Tribes of Israel. They were once very numerous. At certain times they ruled over a good portion of the Middle East. Ten out of these Twelve Tribes were exiled by the Assyrians. They lost their identity and became known to history as the Lost Ten Tribes of Israel. We have traced these Lost Israelites to Western Europe. Their descendants became particularly important in the British Isles and in North America.
This can be proven from historical, linguistic, archaeological, mythological, and related evidence. The present talk is going to concentrate almost entirely on part of the proof available from Scripture. The Bible speaks frequently about the 10 tribes and attaches a great deal of importance to this subject.
Predictions in the Bible concerning the Lost Ten Tribes can be divided into two categories: 1. Descriptions in general such as their future places of location, what and where they will be and so on. This is what we are going to talk about at present: and
2. the Blessings they would receive.
Loss of Identity: It had been prophesied that the LOST TEN TRIBES would lose their identity; that they would spiritually be considered non-Israelites and that they would culturally assimilate to the ways of the nations around them.
"Ephraim is smitten" -says Hosea 9:16-17: ".....My God will cast them away, because they did not hearken unto him: and they shall be wanderers among the nations"
In Hosea 7:8 it says "Ephraim, he hath mixed himself among the people...." that is how the KJ translates it. The actual Hebrew is "Ephraim be-Amim Hue Yitbolel..." which literally means "Ephraim will be assimilated amongst the peoples....".
"…backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce…". (Jeremiah 3:8 KJV unless noted) Likewise the Prophet Hosea, referring to the Lost Tribes of the Kingdom of Israel, echoed,
"…for ye are not my people, and I will not be your God" (Hosea 1:9).
According to the Talmud (Yebamot 17a) the LOST TEN TRIBES were legally classified as "Gentiles to all extents and purposes" -Even though they are destined to return, at the present time they have the status of non-Jews and that is how it was prophesied their status would be.
on page two of Transcript 1
The LOST TEN TRIBES in general are frequently referred to in Prophecy as "Ephraim". Ephraim was the leading tribe. It was from Ephraim that Jeroboam the son of Nebat came. Jeroboam was the first leader of the Northern Tribes who split away from the Southern Kingdom of Judah. In chapter 28 of Isaiah the northern Tribes are condemned because of "the drunkards of Ephraim". It is prophesied that Ephraim shall be punished. It says, "with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people" (Isaiah 28:11) This indicates that they would forget their own language as indeed they did.
Historically, it can be proven that the LOST TEN TRIBES reached Western Europe and the British Isles. The Prophets spoke frequently of and to the northern Tribes. The prophets spoke to the Ten Tribes in their own time and in the future. They spoke unto the Ten Tribes in the Latter days. We are now living in the End Times or in the period immediately preceding it. From the words of Prophecy it can be discerned exactly where the LOST TEN TRIBES are today. The indications of Scripture (and of the Talmud and Midrashim) are that the LOST TEN TRIBES would be associated with each other and in the same general areas. The Prophetic indications should be taken as parts of a whole: For instance, one Prophecy says they are in the west, other prophecies say in the north, and another says they are in the north and west: So taking them all together we can assume a northwesterly direction from the Land of Israel. We may then see how this idea of the Tribes being in the Northwest ties up with other signs-of-direction.
LOST TEN TRIBES in The West:
It was prophesied that the LOST TEN TRIBES would be in the west.
"I will not execute the fierceness of mine anger, I will not return to destroy Ephraim: for I am God, and not man; the Holy One in the midst of thee: and I will not enter into the city. They shall walk after the LORD: he shall roar like a lion: when he shall roar, then the children shall tremble from the west." (Hosea 11:9-10)
-From this we see that the LOST TEN TRIBES would be in the west.
LOST TEN TRIBES in the north:
It was also prophesied that they would be in the north:
Jeremiah the Prophet spoke of the LOST TEN TRIBES in the "north country":
"In those days the House of Judah shall walk with (in Hebrew: "walk unto") the House of Israel, and they shall come together out of THE LAND OF THE NORTH to the land that I have given for an inheritance unto your fathers" (Jeremiah 3:18 emphasis added).
"THEREFORE, behold, the days come says the LORD, that it shall no more be said, The LORD lives, that brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt; But the LORD lives, that brought up the children of Israel from THE LAND OF THE NORTH, and from all the lands whither he had driven them: and I will bring them again unto their land that I gave unto their fathers" (Jeremiah 16:14-15 emphasis added)
From the above expression "The land of the north, AND FROM ALL THE LANDS whither he had driven them" it may be inferred that "The land of the north" is the main land or area spoken of but other lands are also involved.
Again in Jeremiah 31:8-10 it says:
"Behold, I will bring them from the north country, and gather them from the coasts of the earth, and with them the blind and the lame, the woman with child and her that travaileth with child together: a great company shall return thither. They shall come with weeping, and with supplications will I lead them: I will cause them to walk by the rivers of waters in a straight way, wherein they shall not stumble: for I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my firstborn. Hear the word of the LORD, O ye nations, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say, He that scattered Israel will gather him, and keep him, as a shepherd doth his flock." (Jeremiah 31:8-10)
"For the LORD hath redeemed Jacob, and ransomed him from the hand of him that was stronger than he." (Jeremiah 31:11)
The above verses of Jeremiah speak of northern Israel headed by EPHRAIM. "A great company" meaning very many people is mentioned. The passage speaks of the North Country and includes "isles afar off" and "coastlands". It connects "Ephraim" with all of them. It says: "He that scattered Israel will gather him". This shows that the situation referred to is just before the Ingathering in the Last days. It also says "and gather them from the COASTS OF THE EARTH". Most Lost Ten Tribe nations are adjacent to coastlands. -Their borders are on the shores of the Sea.
LOST TEN TRIBES in Isles of the Sea:
Other verses also show that the LOST TEN TRIBES are in Isles of the Sea:
Jeremiah in the Bible describes Ephraim as the "Firstborn" and also connects him with "the ISLES": In the verses we just read above from"They shall come with weeping, and with supplications will I lead them: I will cause them to walk by the rivers of waters in a straight way, wherein they shall not stumble: for I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my firstborn. Hear the word of the LORD, O ye nations, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say, He that scattered Israel will gather him, and keep him, as a shepherd doth his flock." (Jeremiah 31:9-10)
So far we have the west, the north, and we have "isles": all connected with the Lost Tribes of Israel.
Other Biblical references also appear to indicate that the Lost Tribes (or at least part of them) are in the "Isles":
"Wherefore glorify ye the LORD in the fires, even the name of the LORD God of Israel in the isles of the sea." (Isaiah 24:15)
" … and the isles shall wait for his law." (Isaiah 42:4)
"Hearken unto me, MY PEOPLE; and give ear unto me, O my nation: for a law shall proceed from me, and I will make my judgment to rest for a light of the people. My righteousness is near; my salvation is gone forth, and mine arms shall judge the people; the isles shall wait upon me, and on mine arm shall they trust." (Isaiah 51:4-5 emphasis added)
LOST TEN TRIBES, Isles of the Sea and Tarshish:
The LOST TEN TRIBES as well as being in the Isles of the sea were also connected with a place called Tarshish:
"Surely the isles shall wait for me, and the ships of Tarshish first, to bring thy sons from far, their silver and their gold with them, unto the name of the LORD thy God, and to the Holy One of Israel, because he hath glorified thee." (Isaiah 60:9)
The above verse speaks of the "sons" (of Israel) returning from "far", from the isles. They are returning by plane, -flying, as it says "fly as a cloud and as the doves to their windows". They are also being brought back in "the ships of Tarshish" meaning ships plying the Atlantic Ocean.
Historically, "Tarshish" referred to a major city-port named "Tarsis" or Tartessos. It was located on the southwest coast of Spain, near Gibraltar. Tartessos-Tarshish at one stage was part of a maritime domain which had establishments in Britain and Gaul as explained in my book "Lost Israelite Identity". At least one Assyrian reference to "Tarsis" appears to refer to Britain. In Ancient Middle Eastern Thought "Tarshish" represented the beginning of the Atlantic Ocean expanse.
In Psalms 72:10 "The Kings of Tarshish and of the ISLES shall bring offering". "The Kings of Tarshish and of the ISLES" are mentioned together. The Aramaic translation explains that the "Isles" mentioned are those in the "Oceanic Sea" ("Yam Okyanos"). According to Rabbinical commentators "Oceanic Sea" meant THE ATLANTIC OCEAN. The Biblical expression "Ships of Tarshish" means primarily those plying the Atlantic Ocean. It follows that the "ISLES" mentioned in association with Tarshish and Israelites are those of Britain, America, and the coastline of Northwest Europe.
The verse THEREFORE says that in the future the SONS of Israel FROM the Isles are going to return in ships of Tarshish meaning ships belonging to Britain or to the USA. At all events it means that ships from the Atlantic Ocean area will be instrumental in returning the Israelites to the Land of Israel.
LOST TEN TRIBES, Isles of the Sea, and Colonialism:
So far, we have traced the exiled northern Israelites, represented by Ephraim, to the Isles of the sea, to the north and to the west, and to the "Tarshish"-Atlantic Ocean area. Other verses connect the exile of northern Israel with colonial expansion.
Isaiah 49:1-12 is a very important passage since it brings together the various signs of identification that otherwise are scattered throughout Prophecy. This segment in Rabbinical Literature, in the Talmud, Midrashim, and in the Zohar, is connected with the Lost Ten Tribes. This helps justify our own identification of the Ten Tribes using this passage. Isaiah connects Israel with Isles:
"Listen 0 ISLES unto me… Thou art my servant, O Israel, in whom I will be glorified…to bring Jacob again unto him...to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel: I will also give you as a light to the nations, that you may be my salvation unto the ends of the earth.
" ....and I will preserve you and -(he goes on)- give you for a covenant of the people (in Hebrew: a "Brit-am") to establish the earth, to inherit the desolate heritages.
"Behold these shall come from far, and lo these from the north and from the west; and these from the land of Sinim" (Isaiah 49:1-12)
Taking all the above altogether, in addition to Isles, we now have the expression "Brit-am" =Covenant of the people. This is spoken of in connection with the saying: "establish the earth, to inherit the desolate heritages". DESOLATE HERITAGES denote colonialism and the settlement of regions that had been relatively unpopulated. Such places include North America, Australia and even South Africa since many of the Black peoples came to South Africa after the whites had come there and they were arriving at around the same time.
"I will also give you as a light to the nations, that you may be my salvation unto the ends of the earth.
"I will also give you as a light to the nations,": "a light to the nations" means some type of humanizing or civilizing influence that is also connected with "Ends of the earth".
"That you may be my salvation unto the ends of the earth.": -The term: "ends of the earth" or "end of the earth" is a term frequently connected with the LOST TEN TRIBES in Prophecy. "Ends of the earth" denotes Geographical extremities such as the ends of Continental Masses and islands, such as the British Isles, Australia, South Africa, Scandinavia, and North America etc.
In the Bible the Land of Israel is considered to be the center of the world.
"To take a spoil, and to take a prey; to turn thine hand upon the desolate places that are now inhabited, and upon the people that are gathered out of the nations, which have gotten cattle and goods, that dwell in the midst of the land." (Ezekiel 38:12)
"THE MIDST OF THE LAND" refers to the Land of Israel. In Hebrew it is "tabor ha-Aretz" or literally "the belly-button of the world". If you look at a Map you will see that nearly all those nations which we believe to contain substantial numbers of the LOST TEN TRIBES amongst them are at the "end" or at the Geographical Extremity of some Continental Land Mass when approached from the Land of Israel. Israel in the Bible is considered the center of the earth. Literally speaking nearly all of the LOST TEN TRIBES live at the "ends of the earth". Taking the land of Israel as the center with the Continental Masses radiating out from Israel you have Australia at the "end", at the Geographical extremity, in the southeast; South Africa in the south; North America, Britain, Holland, Belgium, France and North America are in the North and West; Scandinavia to the North; The pacific coast of North America is to the northeast. All the "ends of the earth" belong to Israel!!!
"A LIGHT TO THE GENTILES"
Isaiah said that Israel would be "A LIGHT TO THE GENTILES". Isaiah 49:5-12: "..Though Israel be not gathered...to raise up the TRIBES OF JACOB, and to restore the preserved of Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the END OF THE EARTH".
The phrase associates "End of the Earth" with The Tribes of Jacob who need to be gathered, and uses the expression "a light to the Gentiles". Despite all the mistakes, corruption, and evil that the Anglo-Saxon nations may have done, on the WHOLE, they have been a civilizing influence amongst the Gentiles. Modern "Western" concepts of human rights and innate dignity and related values are due to these peoples more than to others. Humanitarian Trends of thought, altruistic motivation and actual reforming measures that are actually workable are often derived from these peoples. At least, they are due to them more than they are due to anybody else. To the extent that the Humanism, the concern for others, of modern civilization is attributable to non-Anglo-Saxon elements then these too are usually from nationalities identified by us as containing a significant proportion of Israelites. French, Scandinavians, Swiss, Dutch, and the Jews, together with the English-speaking peoples are responsible for most of what good exists in the world today. On a relative scale these nations have the best record for socially conscious policies in the world.
Isaiah 49:5 -12 continues to say : "..I will preserve thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people (i.e. a "BRIT-AM" in Hebrew), to establish the earth, to cause to inherit the desolate heritages; That you may say to the prisoners, Go forth; to them that are in darkness, Show yourselves. They shall feed in the ways, and their pastures shall be in high places.
"They shall not hunger nor thirst, neither shall the sun smite them: he that has mercy on them shall lead them even by the springs of water shall he guide them
"Behold these shall come from afar: and lo, these from the north and from the west; and these from the land of SINIM. For the LORD has comforted his people.."
The expression "Raise up the Tribes of Jacob" and "BRIT-AM" meaning Covenant of the People, is reminiscent of Britain, the Commonwealth, and the UNION-JACK. "Jack" is short for Jacob. "The Tribes of Jacob" it says. Union Jack in Hebrew would be considered synonymous with an expression meaning Covenant of Jacob and it would be written in the same way. The U.S.A. in Modern Hebrew is called "Artsot-HaBRIT" meaning literally "Lands of the Covenant". "Yank" is a nickname for Americans. Yank means Jacob. In Hebrew dialect and in Yiddish, "Yank" is a nick-name for Jacob.
The passage of Isaiah 49:8-12 mentioned a "Brit-Am" i.e. A COVENANT OF THE PEOPLE". A parallel passage in Isaiah 42:6 says "And give you for a COVENANT OF THE PEOPLE (a "Brit-Am"), for a light to the Gentiles, to open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, them that sit in darkness out of the prison house". Here a Covenant of the People is associated with the freeing of prisoners. Also in the previously-quoted passage concerning "Brit-Am" (i.e. "Covenant of the People" in Hebrew) the release of prisoners was mentioned "..Say to the prisoners, go forth, to they that sit in darkness, shew yourselves". A freeing of the prisoners was mentioned together with inheriting desolate heritages and a return from afar, from the north and the west and from the land of Sinim. In the early days of the settlement of Australia and North America the freeing of prisoners was important.
Freeing of the prisoners was linked with a Covenant people, a Brit-Am, and to Sinim. A "BRIT-AM" meaning "Covenant of the People" has a similar meaning to the idea underlying The Commonwealth of Britain, or Commonwealth of Nations of the British Empire and also to the concept of a People's Covenant in North American thought. The French have a similar concept. A "BRIT-AM" ("Covenant of the People") implies duties and rights with the governed having a moral and legal contract with each other and with their governors. The Hebrew Bible's words for "COVENANT OF THE PEOPLE" are "BRIT-AM". "Brit" means covenant and "am" means people. (Similarly we have "Brit-Ish"; "Brit" means covenant and "Ish" mean "man", or "belonging to the same", thus "Brit-ish" means "Man of the Covenant" or "Belonging to the Covenant").
"Brit-Am": In Hebrew "Brit-am" in the northern dialects and in later spoken Hebrew would have become "Brit-aN" the final "m" being pronounced as "N". Not only that but on the British side the name for Britain itself in old documents was sometimes rendered by the English as "Britammia", in other words as a "Brit-Am". We see therefore that pronunciations of "Brit-Am" meaning "Covenant of the People" in dialectical Hebrew are similar to the word "Britain". On the other hand pronunciations of "Britain" in Old English sound almost the same as "BRIT-AM". All this could otherwise be considered as entirely co-incidental were it not for the fact that all of the other signs given also describe the British Isles and related areas. From Biblical proof alone it can be shown that the LOST TEN TRIBES really were to become a "BRIT-AM" (meaning "Covenant of the People") dwelling in Britain, in the British Isles of the Sea.
The "Brit-am" Covenant of the People, of Isaiah, related to the "inheritance of waste heritages" and to the establishment of a land together with the freeing of prisoners, and being a light to the nations, the doing of social justice. When Britain first began to colonize America she sent prisoners to serve their sentence there. At the end of their sentence the prisoners received lands and became settlers. After the American Revolution the same system was applied to Australia. The founding of colonies in Australia and North America by Britain had altruistic motivations. Anyone who studies the Literature of the relevant period sees that in those times there were very limited resources. Life was much harsher and tougher than it is today. Nevertheless, the motivating factors behind colonization to a large degree was for good: to re-habilitate prisoners, to give the poor and indigent a chance to support themselves and regain their self-respect, while at the same time hopefully contributing to the welfare of the mother country. The passage spoke of re-settling the "WASTE Heritages". Both North America and Australia were very much under populated and deserve to have been termed "WASTE Heritages" at that time. North America is north and west of the Land of Israel which was Isaiah's standard of reference.
LOST TEN TRIBES and Australia:
The verse said, "Behold these shall come from afar: and lo, these from the north and from the west; and these from the land of SINIM". "SINIM" is understood as meaning "Land of the South" according to the Jewish Commentators e.g. the Aramaic Translation and Rashi. "Australia" in Latin means "South land" or "Land of the South". The name of AUSTRALIA derives from a concept in Early European thought. "Australia" in Latin means "South land". The existence of Australia is supposed to have been unknown though it was suspected. It was thought that a great South Land existed but it was not certain that it really did until a few Portuguese and Dutch sailors followed by Captain Cook of England actually sailed there. The Latin Translation of the Bible was written by Jerome around 400 CE. Jerome consulted with Jewish sages. In the standard Latin (Vulgate) translation of the Bible "the land of Sinim" was translated as "AUSTRALIS" or as "Australia". "Australia" in the translation of Jerome apparently meant the great South Land whose existence was suspected and which was later identified with the Continent of Australia.
The LOST TEN TRIBES have up to now been therefore linked by the Bible with Isles, with the west, with the north country, with coastlands, with the north and west (in Isaiah 49) meaning the NORTHWEST, with a Brit-Am or Covenant of the People, with the Ends of the Earth, with being a light for the Gentiles, a colonizing power of desolate areas and of socially-positive motivation, and with the South Land meaning Australia, and there is more to come. When all of these varied elements are considered altogether it is apparent that the British and the descendants of the British in North America and Australia and other areas are the one group of peoples who DO fit all of the given signs. And they are the only ones who do.
The Scandinavians, Dutch, Belgians, north French, and British are all related to each other and their lands together with that of North America could all be encompassed by the phrase "Eretz Tsafon" meaning North Country wherein Jeremiah located the major section of "Ephraim" meaning the LOST TEN TRIBES as a whole. The major branch of these peoples is that of the English-speaking nations in Britain and North America. "Britain" is the "Isles of the sea". North America is identifiable both with the North Country and with Tarshish of the Atlantic Ocean. Offshoots of these nations are on the "coastlands" in Europe and at the geographical extremities or literal "ends" of the earth. They are also the main ethnic element in Australia and New Zealand, i.e. in the "Land of Sinim". Taken as a whole these interrelated peoples are one ethnic and even cultural family and as a whole they do fit every descriptive sign given in the Prophetical books of the Bible.
Other identifying signs in the Bible are predictions that the LOST TEN TRIBES especially Joseph would be wealthy, powerful, they would enjoy of good health, of agricultural plenty and mineral resources, and possessors of internationally important strategic thoroughfares. All of these points (and many more) are to be found in the described nations and these additional signs should be added to those above and considered together with them as parts of a whole. We will discuss these additional points in another talk. The West European and British-descended peoples are those whom the Bible indicates as being Israelite exiles from the former northern Ten-Tribed Kingdom of Israel. This Kingdom was destroyed by the Assyrians and all its inhabitants were exiled. Even though we are restricting ourselves at present to Biblical evidence it should be remembered that Historical, archaeological and related studies confirm our conclusions.
End Part One.
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