The Unity Factor in Prophecy
Nov 04, 2011
The Unity Factor works fine as long as the newbies have faith in the King, His laws or decrees, and His system of government. If, however, their motives are to come in and change the system to conform with their own ideas, then there is no true Unity.
In America, where our government itself has lost faith in its King (Jesus), it is little wonder that their laws allow non-Christian immigration. Some church denominations, too, do not require true faith in Christ for membership, but only demand some loyalty to the church itself.
In ancient times, Judah conquered Edom (or Idumea) and forced them to convert to Judaism. In other words, they demanded loyalty to Yahweh on pain of death or exile. Hence, virtually all of the Edomites converted to Judaism under compulsion. This conversion did nothing to change their hearts, nor did they have a genuine faith in Yahweh, yet they became Jews and then laid claim to the title of "chosen people."
"Judas Maccabeus conquered their territory for a time in around 163 BC. They were again subdued by John Hyrcanus (c. 125 BC), who forcibly converted them to Judaism and incorporated them into the Jewish nation, despite the opposition of the pharisees.... Immediately before the siege of Jerusalem by Titus [70 AD], 20,000 Idumaeans, under the leadership of John, Simeon, Phinehas, and Jacob, appeared before Jerusalem to fight on behalf of the Zealots who were besieged in the Temple.... After the Jewish Wars the Idumean people are no longer mentioned in history, though the geographical region of 'Idumea' is still referred to at the time of St. Jerome."
In the late first century, Josephus tells us that Hyrcanus "subdued all the Idumeans" and forcibly converted them, adding, "they were hereafter no other than Jews" (Antiquities of the Jews, XIII, ix, 1).
Prior to the Jewish dispersion, the Idumeans were still distinct as a nationality, even though they had been converted to Judaism. After the dispersion, however, those distinctions were totally lost, as they were fully incorporated into Jewry. One may then argue that their faith in Yahweh came to be genuine over time, and hence, their conversion ultimately led to full Unity. That would indeed be the position taken by Judaism.
The problem is that Judaism itself rejected Jesus as Messiah and usurped His throne. To be in Unity with Judaism is to be unified with a group that is NOT in unity with the rightful Heir to the throne. Metaphorically speaking, Judaism is a tree or vine that has no life in it, being separated from its Root, Jesus Christ. Edom was part of that dead tree.
So did the Edomites become God's chosen people by virtue of their conversion to Judaism? Most Christians today are unaware of this history, so the question has never come up in most churches. A related issue came up some centuries later when the Khazars (or Chazars) converted to Judaism.
This was a voluntary conversion to Judaism that took place between 620 and 740 A.D. The Jewish Encyclopedia (1903 ed.) says:
Chazars: A people of Turkish origin whose life and history are interwoven with the very beginnings of the history of the Jews of Russia....
It was probably about that time that the chaghan of the Chazars and his grandees, together with a large number of his heathen people, embraced the Jewish religion. According to A. Harkavy ("Meassef Niddahim," i.), the conversion took place in 620; according to others, in 740. King Joseph, in his letter to Hasdai ibn Shaprut (about 960), gives the following account of the conversion....
King Joseph's letter, now in the Spanish museum, also traces the ancestry of the Chazars. Quoting from Arthur Koestler's book, The Thirteenth Tribe, p. 72,
Joseph then proceeds to provide a genealogy of his people. Though a fierce Jewish nationalist, proud of wielding the 'Sceptre of Judah,' he cannot, and does not claim for them Semitic descent; he traces their ancestry, not to Shem, but to Noah's third son, Japheth; or more precisely to Japheth's grandson, Togarma, the ancestor of all Turkish tribes.
Genesis 10:2, 3 says,
(2) The sons of Japheth were Gomer and Magog and Madai and Javan and Tubal and Meshech and Tiras. (3) And the sons of Gomer were Ashkenaz and Riphath and Togarmah.
It is no coincidence, then, that Eastern European Jewry is called Ashkenazim. Ashkenaz was the brother of Togarmah. Along with their Uncle Magog, Uncle Tubal, and Uncle Meshech, they lived in what is now Ukraine. These are the people that Ezekiel 38:3-6 lists as the invaders of the land of Israel. Verse 6 mentions Togarmah and his father, Gomer.
Keep in mind that this is the Gomer of Genesis 10, not the Gomer of Hosea 1:3 who represented the lost house of Israel.
When the Chazars converted to Judaism, they came into unity with Judaism voluntarily, unlike the Edomites who had been forcibly converted. Our question is this: Can conversion to Judaism transform anyone into one of the "chosen" people? What if those converts were people who were listed as future invaders of the land of Israel?
These are questions that neither Darby nor Scofield ever contemplated, because they were ignorant of this part of Jewish history. They did not know that up to 90% of world Jewry today comes from the Chazars of Eastern Europe, known today as the Ashkenazi branch of Jewry.
It really comes down to the Unity Factor. When the people of Togarma converted to Judaism, did this save them? Did this give them "eternal life"? Did they become "chosen" through conversion apart from faith in Jesus Christ?
No, all it did was to graft these people into a rootless tree that was dead in the sight of God.
Yet there were significant consequences to Judaism itself. Both Edom and Togarma infused into Jewry their own significant destinies, as prophesied in Scripture. Edom was descended from Esau, Jacob's rival for the birthright, so their conversion reinforced the Jewish desire to inherit the old land (Ezekiel 35:10; Mal. 1:1-4). Togarma infused into Jewry the desire "to capture spoil and seize plunder" (Ez. 38:12) in the old land of Israel.
Together, these infusions became the real basis and motive of political and religious Zionism in today's world. Yet because so few have understood the Law of Unity, as well as Jewish history, hardly anyone understands Zionism from God's viewpoint. The "invasion" prophecies of Ezekiel 38 and 39 were fulfilled by the Ashkenazi immigration to "Israel." Likewise, the Zionistic prophecies of Edom were fulfilled by the Sephardic Jews--the other main branch of Judaism which had absorbed the Edomites in 126 B.C.
Both of these groups had united with the cursed fig tree of Judah, which had dried up from the roots when they cut themselves off from the Messiah. That tree will never bring forth fruit, Jesus said in Matt. 21:19. But Jesus also prophesied that it would return to life toward the end of the age. Matt. 24:32 says,
"Now learn the parable from the fig tree; when its branch has already become tender, andputs forth its leaves, you know that summer is near."
This tree came to life in 1948 with the help of Edom and Togarmah, who conquered by immigration. That tree now has fig leaves, but still no fruit. Nor will it ever bear fruit, if Jesus' words are true.
Dr. Stephen Jones