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Israel the beloved



Yahweh’s desire is to re-gather all of the Lost sheep of the House of Israel. This includes those of Judah (with the tribe of Benjamin and some Levites) who are still scattered among the nations, and the ten tribes (which the Bible calls Ephraim) who never actually returned after the exile although many did become mixed with Judah which explains why many Jews of today have no idea from which tribe they stem. The story of Judah and the story of re-gathered Israel are equally important and of necessity vitally connected. This study is primarily about the exiled northern kingdom, Israel. The story of the return of the southern kingdom who were mainly the ones left in Israel at the time of Messiah many of whom would themselves escape from the terrible slaughter in Israel in 70 a.d. into the nations from where they are largely returning today through what is known as "aliyah" will be the subject of a similarly thorough study. We need to understand that Israel (i.e. the ten tribes - "...and their companions") and Judah ("...and their companions") are separate peoples until they become one " the hand of the prophet..." See Ezekiel 37:15-19 If they were in fact all included in the Jewish nation today, which is what many people believe, then what could this scripture mean? There obviously has to have been a separation for this scripture to be true.

Text: Jer 3:8, Hosea 1:6-9, Hosea 7:8.

Israel (the ten tribes) lost their special covenantal relationship with YHWH because of continued sin and idolatry. YHWH allowed the Assyrians to invade and carry them away, and they became integrated, or 'mixed' with the nations into whose land they eventually arrived, and so they lost their identity as Israelites, becoming as the Gentiles. Judah on the other hand on the whole, never really lost their identity and often paid for this with their lives. The Israelites (ten tribes of the north) will, however recover their relationship with YHWH, and be restored to Judah when they return to Him "in the last days." Hosea 3:4-5, Hosea 1:11, 2:1, Hosea 2:19-23,Hosea 14:4-8, Jer. 3:11-18, Jer 31:18-20, Jer 33:7-8, 14, 23-26. Jer. 50:4-6, 17-20, Eze.36:25-31, Eze.37:23, Zech. 10:6,9,12. The prodigal son = a picture of Israel coming home to his older brother Judah, (who ‘stayed at home’ by looking after the land, Torah, and traditions etc.)How did they (the ten tribes) become scattered, thus losing their identity? Where are they today? When will they return? and be restored to their brother Judah?

1. The two houses were first divided.
(The divided kingdoms of Israel and Judah)

Read 1 Kings 11:13, 29-33, 1 Kings 12:21 "...and will give 10 Tribes to thee..." Because of sin, Israel became divided, with Jeroboam and the 10 Tribes in the north of Israel, and Rehoboam in Jerusalem with the Tribe of Judah and Benjamin in the south of Israel. The two groups became enemies.
(Hostility began earlier: Many Ephramites became conscripted labourers under the ruling house of Judah. Ephraim had no land inheritance, and there was no intermarriage etc. Jeroboam was appointed to oversee them. Rehoboam made life extremely difficult for the 10 Tribes: Read: 1 Sam. 8:11-19, 1 Kings 9:15,21, 11:35, 12:1-14, 1 Kings 17:34.
1 Kings 12: 19-20 "...Israel rebelled against the house of David unto this day..."( Supernatural forces caused enmity between them, and separated the two houses. Ephraim became jealous of Judah, (and still is!) and the two houses became separated. Ephraim, was never called Jew (Yehudi) or carried their identity.)

2.Then the Northern 10 Tribes were deported to Assyria

(Deporting of the Northern Tribes)

In 745-727 B.C. and 722-705 B.C. the Northern Kingdom (i.e. 10 Tribes) were invaded by Tiglath Pileser, Shalmaneser, Sargon and Senacherib, with their armies, who were Assyrian Kings. They were carried away en mass to Assyria in the north. 27,290 inhabitants of the town of Samaria alone were carried off as ‘booty’ Read 2 Kings 17:18 "None left but Judah!" v. 23 "Until Yahweh removed Israel out of His sight... carried away out of their own land to Assyria unto this day"
v. 24 "And the king of Assyria brought men from Babylon ....and placed them in the cities of Samaria instead of the children of Israel..."

3. Then the two southern tribes were deported to Babylon

(the Southern 2 Tribes were deported to Babylon)

200 years later, in 605 - 586 B.C. the southern kingdom was also removed, but to a far different place. (Read 2 Kings 24:1, 15) Nebuchadnezzar invaded the southern kingdom of Israel, where the Tribes of Judah and Benjamin were, and carried them off to Babylon. Thus, not only were the two kingdoms enemies, but their deportations were also 200 years apart, i.e. several generations, and their new countries were 300 miles, or 500 kilometers apart, as Babylon and Assyria are 300 miles away from each other. Judah - near the river Chebar, Read Eze. 1:1.

4. The 2 Southern Tribes then returned to Israel the land.

(the Southern 2 Tribes then returned from Babylon )

Jeremiah prophesied (Read Jer 25:11) that the exile in Babylon would last for 70 years, and just prior to the end of these 70 years Daniel, who was one of these captives, began to pray. Cyrus king of Persia, who had taken over the Babylonian Medean Empire, issued an edict to rebuild Jerusalem in 539 B.C. and Zerubbabel returned and began work to rebuild the Temple. Then Ezra and Nehemial returned from among the exiles in Babylon to help.
Note: Despite the time lapse, a study by Professor Karl Skorecki the senior nephrologist in Rambam hospital Haifa with colleagues in London, Haifa and Arizona (Jerusalem Post 1997) proves that the Jews in the world today share the same variety of y chromosome, making them of the same Tribe.

5. There is no mention of the 10 Tribes returning home.

(There is no mention of the 10 Tribes returning home.)

Read Ezra 1:5, 2:1, 10:9, 7:6, No mention of any of the Northern Kingdoms returning from Assyria, very much inf. re. Judah and Benjamin. The renowned Jewish sage Nachmanides (1194-1270) adamant that only the two tribes returned. Read Hosea 1:6 "...I will no more have mercy upon the House of Israel: but I will utterly take them away..." Hosea 8:8 "swallowed up" = Heb. bala, be at end.Only a remnant, a tithe was left to look after the land. Read Amos 5:3 "...went forth by an hundred shall leave 10..."
Josephus, the famous Jewish Historian, on p.1004, 1972 edition, said: "The 10 Tribes are beyond the Euphrates till now, and are an immense multitude not to be estimated by numbers." Read: 1 Kings, 14:15. "...scatter them beyond the river, because..." The Encyclopaedia Judaica 1036, 1972 edition, states that Ephraim was "...absorbed into foreign peoples..." Ephraim desired to be like the nations, and Yahweh granted them their request! There is no historical or biblical evidence which suggests that the 10 Tribes ever returned to Israel, although some had become integrated with Judah, especially the Levites before deportation because of the idolatry going on all around them in the northern kingdom under Jeroboam.

(Read I Kings 12:17, "...the children of Israel who dwelt in the cities of Judah..." 2 Chron. 11:14, "For the Levites left...and came to Judah ..." 2 Kings 17:28, "One of the priests ...carried away from Samaria came and dwelt in Bethel, and taught them how they should fear Yahweh."
Incidentally, Judah also sinned! (Eze 23:1-49) But there is no evidence of them being divorced as is the case for the northern 10 Tribes, Ephraim.

6. Are the ten tribes lost forever?

Read Hosea 1:10 "...will be found..." Read all of Hosea to get the full picture.
Yahweh divorced Israel, the 10 Tribes, because of idolatry. However, He loves them still, and there is much evidence of this love in Hosea and many other scriptures. Because of His love for them, He will re-gather them. Yahshua Himself stated: "...I came... for the lost sheep of the House of Israel..." Jn 10:16 Matt. 15:24.Read also Isaiah 49:13-16 "...for Yahweh will have mercy upon his afflicted...can a woman forget her sucking child...I have graven thee upon the palms of My hands"Is Israel important to Yahweh? Look in your concordance. In Strongs, there are 7 whole pages of references to Israel. Israel is mentioned 2,570 times in Scripture!

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