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Joseph's Birthright #10

Joseph-Israel Lost #1


JUDAH'S SCEPTRE AND JOSEPH'S BIRTHRIGHT #10

by Allen (1917)

CHAPTER X.


JOSEPH-ISRAEL LOST


     In spite of all the facts to the contrary, there is a class
of teachers who without one word of historic proof insist upon
teaching that the Egypto-Israelites returned with the Jews. Here
is the argument of a commentator who has written two commentaries
on "The Revelation." He is a good man and has a pure heart; but
in so far as this subject is concerned, he certainly has not
informed himself. He first asks the question: "Were not the ten
tribes lost after the deportation of Shalmanezar, as none but
Judah and Benjamin returned in the Exodus of Nehemiah?" And
answers it thus: "There is a general misapprehension and delusion
on that subject. As the ten tribes were carried into captivity a
hundred and thirty-four years before Judah and Benjamin; yet
doubtless many of the ten tribes returned with them to Palestine.
So the ten tribes were not lost, but they simply lost their
tribehood, as they did not return in their organized tribes, but
as individuals. Hence all of this hue and cry about the lost
tribes, ransacking all the world to find them, and writing vast
volumes, is a piece of twaddle and nonsense."
     Thus with one presumptive wave of the hand he attempts to
sweep from before our eyes the most important subject, so far as
the vindication of the Word of God is concerned, that has ever
made an appeal to a Bible-loving people for an honest hearing.
This same commentator speaks of "The Exodus of Nehemiah," and of
the number that returned "under Nehemiah," as though there were
but one Exodus from Babylon. Whereas there were two, the first
and largest being under Ezra, while that of Nehemiah was fourteen
years later, and was composed of those Jews "which were left" of
the Babylonish captivity, who did not go up with the first or
Ezra exodus.
     He further says: "The ten tribes had been in the Chaldean
Empire two hundred years at the time of the Exodus." But it is
written "that Israel was taken into Assyria, and placed in the
regions of the rivers Hilah and Habor," a region of country more
than five hun dred miles from Babylon. To us it seems an insult
to the integrity of God for any man to presume that the ten
tribes ever saw Babylon.
     This commentator still further says: "Of course they were
but a fraction of Judah and Benjamin" which returned. But God
says: "All the men of Judah and Benjamin gathered themselves
together unto Jerusa lem, and EVERY ONE unto his city." Is there
any question here as to which we shall believe? None whatever;
but, since our brother says that only a fraction of Judah and
Benjamin returned, we would ask: Where are the remaining
fractions from which that fraction was taken? And since he tells
us that doubtless many of the ten tribes returned with that
fraction, we would ask: Where is the whole number from which the
"many" came? And, without waiting for an answer, we will hasten
to say that when this man was driven to use the "doubtless"
argument, he had evidently lost something, and that the people in
question are lost, at least to him.
     When the Lord had determined to give Israel a bill of
divorce, he called Hosea to prophesy against her, and, in order
to have a perfect type of her adulterous condition, made him take
a wife of whoredoms and bear children of whoredoms because the
people of "the land had committed great whoredoms, departing from
the Lord."
     As the wife of the prophet bore children, the Lord took the
privilege of naming them, and in each name uttered a prophecy.
When the first daughter was born, "God said unto him, Call her
name Lo-ruhamah (which means, not having obtained mercy), for I
will no more have mercy upon the house of Israel; but I will
utterly take them away. But I will have mercy upon the house of
Judah." (Hosea 1:6,7.)
     "Now when she (the prophet's wife) had weaned Lo-ruhamah,
she conceived and bare a son. Then said God, Call his name
Lo-ammi (which means, not my people), for ye are not my people,
and I will not be your God. Yet the number of the children of
Israel shall be as the sands of the sea, which cannot be measured
nor numbered-and it shall come to pass that in the place where it
was said unto them Ye are not my people, there it shall be said
unto them, Ye are the sons of the Living God." (Hosea 1:8-10.)
Beloved, do you catch the wonderful meaning to all this? Look!
The name of the newborn son is Lo-ammi, for God refuses any
longer to be the God of that people among whom the child is born;
he casts them off and forsakes them.
     "Yet" - O do you see the immutability of the promise of the
covenant-making and covenant-keeping Jehovah, who after making an
unconditional promise must keep it, even if some conditions do
change? God has said it. He cannot lie; with him there is "no
variableness nor shadow of turning." He has promised Abraham,
Isaac and Jacob, that their seed shall become "many nations."    
"I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven." "I
will make thee fruitful and multiply thee."  "Thy seed shall be
as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the
west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south." And
then he told Joseph that all these promises should be fulfilled
in his sons, at that same time malting Ephraim his first-born.
Then in due time he separated the Sceptre and the Birthright,
causing all the tribes to gather under the one or the other,
making two kingdoms of the entire Abrahamic posterity, saying,
"This thing is of me."
     But now "Ephraim-Israel is joined to his idols." "They are
not my people," "I will not be their God," "I cast them out"; and
"yet," in spite of this, and although driven from home by their
enemies, "yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as
the sands of the sea, which cannot be numbered." This language
proves that, although cast off, they must still increase and
fulfill their God-appointed destiny by growing into a multitude
of people in the midst of the earth, and in due time become a
great nation or a company of nations. Also, the words which
immediately follow these show that, while in that cast-out
condition, and while developing into their destiny as regards
multiplicity, they will become lost, so lost that they themselves
will not know who they are. For it shall come to pass that, in
the place where they go, they will be told that they are not the
people of God, that they are not Jacob's seed, that they are not
Israel, as at the time of the casting off they knew themselves to
be. And when they are told that they are not the people of God
they shall have so forgotten their origin, that they will believe
it.  This being the case, they certainly will be LOST, at least
to themselves, and will need some one to prove to them that they
are the descendants of God's chosen people. So, when the time
comes, the Lord has said that those persons shall be there, and
shall say unto them: "Ye are the sons of the Living God."
     While Israel was true to the Lord, she was likened to a
delicate and comely woman, and the Lord called her his wife; but
when she became an idolatrous nation, she was called a harlot,
and the Lord treated her as a woman who had broken wedlock, by
giving her a bill of divorce. After the Lord has "cast her out of
his sight," and allowed her to be carried away into the Assyrian
captivity, she is spoken of in prophecy as "forsaken," a woman in
"widowhood," "a wife of youth," "refused," "barren" and
"desolate."
     But the Lord made a promise of redemption to that same
desolate one, saying: "Thou shalt forget the shame of thy youth
and shalt not remember the reproach of thy widowhood any more.
For thy Maker is thy husband (once more), the Lord of Hosts is
his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; the God of the
whole earth shall be called. For the Lord hath called thee as a
woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, and a wife of youth, when
thou wast refused, saith thy God. For a small moment have I
forsaken thee, but with great mercies will I gather thee." (Isa.
54:4-7-)
     You will also find by consulting this same chapter that,
while barren, forsaken, and desolate, this same woman was to
become the mother of more children than while married, on in
other words, Israel was to increase while cast out more than
before. This is exactly what the prophet Hosea has declared in
the prophecy which we have been considering.
     The Lord further uses Hosea to teach that Israel would
become lost after being cast out in the following: "For she said:
I will go after my lovers ('Israel is swallowed up: now shall
they be among the Gentiles as a vessel wherein is no pleasure,
for they are gone up to Assyria, a wild ass alone by himself:
Ephraim hath hired lovers'), that give me my bread and my water,
my wool and my flax, mine oil and my drink. Therefore, behold, I
will hedge up thy way with thorns, and make a wall, that SHE
SHALL NOT FIND HER PATHS." (Hosea 8:8,9; 2:5,6.)
     To show that the Scriptures, which we have just quoted,
refer to Israel, aside from the Jews, we call your attention to
the opening words of the chapter in which the non-parenthetical,
or enclosing text appears, which is as follows; "Say ye unto your
brethren Ammi, and to your sisters, Ruhamah. Plead with your
mother, plead! for she is not my wife, neither am I her husband."
When God gave to Israel the name of Lo-ammi, or not my people, it
was because he had cast them off, and they were no longer his
people. For when the Lord gives a name to a person, or a nation,
he names them in harmony with their character or condition. But
while it is true that Israel was not at that time the people of
God, it is true that Judah was then ruling with him, and was
counted among the faithful; hence, they were Ammi, or the people
of God.
     Also when God gave to Israel the name of Lo-rubamah, the
meaning of which is, not having obtained mercy, he did so because
that name was characteristic of his attitude toward them, at that
time, for he declared that he would no longer have mercy upon
them, but would cast them out. But at that same time he said, "I
will have mercy upon the house of Judah." So, if Israel was
Lo-ruhamah, the one not having obtained mercy, then Judah was
Ruhamah, the one which obtained mercy. For that word "Lo" is the
Hebrew negative, and, in the Scriptures under consideration, the
words Ammi, Lo-ammi, Ruhamah, and Lo-ruhamah are Hebrew words
which are transferred, but not translated.
     These things being true, it is clear that the brethren Ammi,
and their sisters Ruhamah, who are exhorted to plead, are the
Jews and Jewesses of the kingdom of Judah. It is they who are
exhorted to plead with their mother, i. e., to plead with that
out from which they came, namely: THE KINGDOM OF ISRAEL.
     Destroy them?  No, but "consume thy, filthiness out o f
thee." (Ezek.22:15.) After this, the Lord declares this
dispersion to have been accomplished, saying: "I scattered them
among the heathen and they were dispersed through the countries:
* * * and when they entered into the heathen, whither they went,
they profaned my holy name, when they said to them, These are the
people of the Lord, and are gone forth out of his land. But I had
pity for mine holy name, which the house of Israel had profaned
among the heathen, whither they went. Therefore say unto the
house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord God, I do not this for your
sakes, O house of Israel, but for mine holy name's sake, which ye
have profaned among the heathen, whither ye went. And I will
sanctify my great name, * * * and the heathen shall know that I
am the Lord God, when I shall be sanctified in you before their
eyes. For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you
out o f all countries, and bring you into your own land."   
(Ezek. 36: 19-24.)
     The Jews were taken into Babylon and returned from thence;
but the house of Israel, as herein stated, was scattered
throughout all countries. But for the vindication of his holy
name, he declared that he should yet be sanctified in the eyes of
all nations, by saving Israel and bringing them back to their own
land. When this takes place, Israel shall come out from all
countries.
     In two of these quotations they are called, "The dispersed."
This will enable us to understand Zeph.3:10 - "From beyond the
rivers of Ethiopia, my suppliants, even the daughter o f my
dispersed, shall bring mine offering."
     Since we understand that "the dispersed" are the ten tribes,
which composed the Birthright kingdom, we comprehend the grave
import of the question asked by the chief man of Judah in the
following: "When the Pharisees heard that the people murmured
such things concerning him; and the Pharisees and the chief
priests sent officers to take him. Then Jesus said unto them, Yet
a little while am I with you, and then I go unto him that sent
me.  Ye shall seek me and shall not find me: and where I am,
thither ye cannot come. Then said the Jews among themselves,
Whither will he go that we cannot find him? "Will he go unto the
dispersed among the Gentiles?" (John 7:32-35.)
     This very question reveals the fact that the Jews knew that
the ten tribes were dispersed among the nations, and that they
did not know where they were; hence, that they could not go to
them. They also comprehended the fact that, if this man called
Christ should prove to be the long-expected Messiah, he did know
where the lost people were, and could go to them. It is also an
admission, from the chief men of Judah, that a portion of the
race were lost.
     Isaac Leeser, an eminent Jewish scholar, who translated the
Hebrew Scriptures for the English speaking Jews, says in his
great work, "The Jewish Religion," Vol. I, page 256: "Let us
observe that by this return of the captives (from Babylon) the
Israelitish nation was not restored; since the ten tribes, who
had formerly composed the kingdom of Israel, were yet left in
banishment; and to this day the researches of travelers and wise
men have not been able to trace their fate." Micah, also, falls
into exact line with the rest of the prophets, for through him
the Lord declares: "I will surely assemble, O Jacob, all of 
thee; I will surely gather the remnant of Israel; I will put them
together as the sheep of Bozrah, as the flock in the midst of
their fold, they shall make great noise by reason of the
multitude of men. The breaker is come up before them: they have
broken up, and passed through the gate, and are gone out by it;
and their king shall pass before them, and the Lord on the head
of them." (Micah 2:12,13.)
     The reason the Lord says that he will assemble and put them
together is, that, prior to the time when Shalmaneser took the
main body of the kingdom of Israel into Assyria, it seems that a
former king (Tiglath-Pileser) had taken the Reubenites, the
Gadites, a portion of Naphtali, and one of the half tribes of
Manasseh, "And brought them unto Halah, and Habor and Hara, and
to the river Gozan." Later, the rest of the ten tribes were
brought to this same region.
     As we have already noted, the last that Josephus knew
concerning the ten tribes, is that they were beyond the river
Euphrates. This river rises at the foot of Mount Ararat, up in
the Caucasian Pass, between the Black and Caspian seas. Israel,
making a great noise because of the multitude, went out through
this pass, or gate, or entrance.
     What is meant by the king passing on before them is
explained later.
....................

To be continued


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