The Advantage of Genealogy, Part 1
May 16, 2008
Christian Zionism incorrectly assumes that the Jews are Israel and then elevates the advantages of "being a Jew" to almost mythical proportions. In my early life, I was surrounded by family and friends who practically worshiped Jews. It was said that Jews would rule the world in the Age to come, and therefore we Christians had to treat them as kings today--even if they still rejected Jesus as the Messiah.
If any Jew became a church member, he was immediately appointed as its Treasurer. If any rancher came across a purely red heifer, he immediately donated it and shipped it to the Israelis to see if it would qualify for sacrifice. Donations were taken up to rebuild the temple in Jerusalem, and children saved their dimes to pay for it. The temple has been financed a hundred times over, but Christians are still encouraged to donate.
These things I have seen personally. I do not need to quote anyone else's research on this. As a child, I was grounded firmly in the idea that Jews were chosen and had special privileges with God that were unavailable to me, a "gentile."
The first thing that began to make me question this was when I discovered that the current Babylonian system, which today rules the world, is largely controlled by wealthy Jewish financiers. In fact, the minister of the Baptist Church in Minneapolis, where I had been attending, preached on this, telling us that God was even then preparing the Jews to rule the world. I thought this was rather odd, because I then had to decide if I ought to work to promote Babylon.
This led me on a quest to learn more. In that search, I discovered the difference between Israel and Judah--that is, the difference between Israelites and Judahites. ("Jew" is short for Judah.) I learned that Israel had been split by civil war after the death of Solomon, and from then on, the prophets prophesied about each nation separately. Israel had certain prophecies consistent with the Birthright of Joseph, while Judah was given prophecies consistent with the Scepter and the genealogy of the kings leading to the Messiah-King. (See 1 Chron. 5:1, 2.)
I showed this distinction to my dad one afternoon, and this nearly put him in shock. He had been through Bible College and had been a pastor and missionary for many years. He had known the difference between the two kingdoms of Israel and Judah--at least, he knew it in his head. But somehow, when reading the prophets, he had always lumped them together, confusing the two. So when Isaiah spoke of "the house of Israel and the house of Judah," my dad had presumed that the prophet was simply repeating himself or stuttering.
That day changed his life and his entire outlook on Scripture, history, and Bible prophecy. He went home to look up every reference to the two houses and to compare the prophecies. Later, he called me excitedly to share about Jeremiah 18 and 19. Jeremiah 18:1-10 was about the house of Israel; the rest of chapter 18 and all of chapter 19 was about Judah and Jerusalem. And the destinies of the two nations were very different.
Israel was said to be a jar ("vessel") being built by a potter, but because it was "marred in the hand of the potter," it was beaten down and rebuilt into another vessel. But on the other hand, Judah was said to be an old earthen jar (Jer. 19:1), as opposed to wet clay. The prophet gave a lengthy indictment for the sins of Judah and Jerusalem, and then God told him to smash the jar in the city dump, saying, "Even so will I break this people and this city" (Jer. 19:11).
My dad was obviously astounded by this. He had read it for years but never really understood it, because he had always confused Israel with Judah and never understood the contrasting prophecies of each. Once he possessed the key to understanding this distinction, the Scriptures began to open up to him like never before.
At that point, I began to study the migrations of "the lost sheep of the house of Israel" without assuming that these Israelites were Jews. Ezekiel 34 spoke of them as being "lost sheep" and "scattered on every high mountain." Lost sheep are sheep who cannot find their way home. In Ezekiel's day, the house of Israel had been deported to Assyria a century earlier, and they had never returned. All the prophets were very concerned about them, because they held the Birthright. When those sheep were lost, it was the Birthright that was lost.
I soon discovered that those lost sheep did not disappear from history altogether. They merely lost their name. Because they came to be known by other names, they were lost by many historians and preachers. But once we learned from historical records what names the Assyrians called those Israelites, it was easy to trace their movements.
Anyone can read about the Black Obelisk of Shalmanezer, for instance, which shows Israel's King Jehu, "son of Omri," paying tribute to the king of Assyria. The archeologists are agreed that the official Assyrian name for Israel was "House of Omri," which came out in their language as Beth-Ghomri, or Beth-Khumri. This name also appears on the Moabite Stone and other monuments of the past.
The Assyrian capital of Nineveh was discovered and unearthed in the year 1900, and it took 30 years to sort out the 1400 clay tablets that were found. Many of them were frontier reports concerning the activities of the Gamira, or Gamirri, the people of the Beth-Ghomri (Khumri). The Assyrians were conquered by the Babylonians, and the Babylonians by the Persians.
When King Darius the Great of Persia died, he was buried in a tomb on the side of a mountain at Behistun. The Behistun Rock listed all the people that Darius had ruled as king. They were listed in three languages. In that listing, Gamirri in one language was Saka in another language and Sakka in the third language. Historians of Rome wrote about them and called them by the Latin term, Saxons.
In other words, the Saxons were the Sakka and the Gamirri, who were in turn the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Likewise, the Khumri came to be known as the Kelts or Celts as they began migrating into Europe. The Welsh people still call themselves Khumri today. This is a matter of public record for all to see.
In fact, once we see this, we can then understand the book of Hosea. Hosea was a prophet to the house of Israel. He married a harlot named Gomer, or Gomri, who represented the nation of Israel. The prophet's wife and children were prophetic of the future of the house of Israel. His wife would leave him and end up in slavery, but Hosea was told to redeem her. But the most astounding thing is that her name, Gomer, was the official Assyrian name of the house of Israel.
Furthermore, Hosea's name is virtually the same as the name of the last king of Israel, Hoshea (2 Kings 18:1). Even as the king was said to be "married" to the nation, so also was Hoshea "married" to Gomri. So the prophet Hosea was told to marry Gomer, or Gomri. (The "i" ending indicates "of" or "the people of," even as the term Israeli or Yehudi meant "Israelite" or "Judahite" in Hebrew.)
The point of this is to show that the "lost sheep of the house of Israel" were not Jews and are not Jews even today. They make up the bulk of the population of Europe and other nations around the world with European heritage. After the fall of Assyria in 612 B.C., many of these Israelites began to migrate north and west into Europe. Many came through the Caucasus Mountains between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea, and hence they are often called "Caucasian."
Alright, so what? Of what benefit, if any, is one's genealogy as an Israelite? To be continued.
This is the first part of a series titled "The Advantage of Genealogy." To view all parts, click the link below.
Dr. Stephen Jones