Scripture and Scholars say...


1 Ki. 14:15, God “shall scatter” Israel “beyond the river,” not all in one place.

2 Ki. 10:32, “In those days the Lord began to cut off parts of Israel...” –before their final complete exile.

2 Ki. 17:6, The Assyrian king “captured Samaria and exiled Israel”

Deut. 29:28, “cast them into another land, as it is this day”

Isa. 5:26 “the end of the earth”

Isa. 11:11-12, “the four corners of the earth”

Isa. 27:13 (Vulgate), “those lost from the land of Assyria”

Isa. 49:9, “say to the prisoners, Go forth; to them that are in darkness, Show yourselves.” An address to the lost ten tribes according to Jewish midrash “Pesikta Rabbati 31:10”

Isa. 49:21, (Ten Tribes:) “where had they been?”

Jer. 15:4, “I will cause them to be removed into all kingdoms of the earth”

Hos. 2:14, “I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness,” not a return to Canaan.

Hos. 8:8, “Israel is swallowed up now among the nations”

Hos. 9:17, “wanderers among the nations”

Ezra 1:15, ONLY “Judah and Benjamin” returned; remaining ten tribes did not return

“Israel and Judah... developed more or less independent of the other, Israel in the north and Judah in the south; and only gradually did circumstances bring them together, and then came the inevitable clash of interests, religious as well as political.” –"Hebrew Origins," Theophile James Meek, 1936, p.76

“Israel as a kingdom was never restored from Assyria, as Judah was from Babylon after 70 years.” –Jamieson, Faucett, Brown Commentary, p.650

“There never was a real return from the exile, although some individuals doubtless returned...the captivity of Israel did not actually terminate at 538 [B.C.], nor, in fact, ever.” –Geo. Ricker Berry, Colgate-Rochester Divinity School, “Was Ezekiel in the Exile?” pp.89, 92 (Journal of Biblical Literature 49 (1930)

“Many of the towns in southern Judah and Simeon were not reoccupied after the exile. This process was quite as disastrous as it is portrayed in the Old Testament...” –Thos. Davis, “Shifting Sands,” Oxford Univ. Press, 2004

“That the Redeemer comes ‘from Zion’ [Isa. 59:20] for Israel implies that Israel is in exile...” –G.K. Beale and D.A. Carson, “Commentary on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament,” Baker Academic, 2007, p.674

“The exile, into all lands, among all nations, was as irrevocably decreed as was the destruction of the city.” –Charles C. Torrey, Yale University, Journal of Biblical Literature 56 (1937), p.206

“...the returnees came only from the tribes of Judah and Benjamin —the exiles in Babylon. The ten tribes did not return...the loss of the [ten] tribes marked the greatest demographic defeat inscribed in Jewish memory since Biblical times.” –Zvi Ben-Dor Benite, “The Ten Lost Tribes: A World History,” Oxford Univ. Press, 2009, pp.17, 117

“Evidently it was a token return...” –Frank Moore Cross, Harvard University, “A Reconstruction Of The Judean Restoration,” Journal of Biblical Literature 94 (1975), p.15

“The tree of Israel, grown from one root with various branches, was cut into pieces.” –John Calvin, cited in Boer, “John Calvin,” pp. 190-191

“The ten [tribes] which had previously been carried away being scattered among the Parthians, Medes, Indians, and Ethiopians never returned to their native country, and are to this day held under the sway of barbarous nations.” –Sulpitius Severus (circa. 360-420 A.D.), Severus, Sacred History, bk ii, ch. Ii, in Schaff, et al., transl. Sulpitius Severus

“Jewish people often thought that ten of the twelve tribes were lost and would be restored only in the end time.” –Craig Keener, “A Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew,” Eerdmans, 1999, p.315

The ten tribes’ not returning opened “a huge wound that does not heal.” –Talmudic Haga, Sefer Ha-Berit Ha-Hadash

"The prophecy of a restored and reunited Israel and Judah...was never actually to be fulfilled... Intransigence on the part of both...produced separate and irreconcilable societies that were never able to reunite." -Bruce Vawter, "Amos, Hosea, Micah, With An Introduction To Classical Prophecy," p.81

 

 

 

 

 

Christian Commentary:
Steven M. Collins


 

The Tribe of Judah in the Latter Days

 

 

 

Steven M. Collins

 

We are pleased to present articles by leading authors on the subject of the Biblical promises and covenants to Israel.

Author Steven M. Collins has written a wonderful four-book series on the Two-Houses of Israel. Ordering information is below.
Happy Reading!

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THE TRIBE OF JUDAH IN “THE LATTER DAYS”

By Steven M. Collins

Readers of this article will likely already be aware that modern Jews are, indeed, the Israelite tribe of Judah. They are a brother tribe (and natural ally) to the modern nations of the house of Israel found in Anglo-Saxon, Scandinavian and European nations. However, this article will demonstrate that one can also confirm that we are living in the biblical “latter days” by examining two prophecies which will be fulfilled in the tribe of Judah in the latter days.

The first prophecy is in Genesis 49. This prophecy is for a prophetic period called "the latter days." While that is a subject worthy of a lengthy discussion, suffice it to say that I believe we are currently living in this prophetic period of time just prior to the Messianic Age.  Jacob called together all his sons prior to his death and God gave him prophetic inspiration regarding the fates and circumstances of each tribe in the latter days. Concerning the descendants of Judah in the latter days, Jacob's prophecy in verses 8-9 included the following words:

"Judah...thy hand shall be in the neck of his enemies...Judah is a lion's whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up?"

Readers surely realize that the Jews lived for many centuries (indeed, millennia) without a completely sovereign nation of their own.  They were scattered among many nations in a very long Diaspora. However, after the Holocaust of World War II, the nation of Israel was born in 1948 after a partition of Palestine, which the British had governed as a UN Mandate Territory. The infant Israeli nation miraculously defeated several Arab armies, winning their independence and insuring their nationhood.

Jacob's prophecy foretells Judah will be a "lion's whelp" in the latter days. A whelp is another name for a young lion cub.  Jacob prophesied that Judah would be a very young nation in the latter-day period of time.  This perfectly describes the modern Israeli nation, which was "born" in the post World War II period and is still a "young nation" in the world.  No nation which has existed for centuries could be the modern tribe of Judah!  The divine prophecy requires that the tribe of Judah be found in a young nation in the latter-days.

The prophecy also mentions words like "prey,"  "couching as a lion," and "in the neck of thine enemies." A lion is, of course, a predatory animal which must kill prey animals to live.  The Israelis have been required to fight several major wars against neighboring Arab nations to defend and preserve their independence. The modern Jewish state has had to "act like a lion" to survive in the modern world. This also fulfills the prophecy of Jacob.

Genesis 49:9 foretold Judah would be "as an old lion" even though it was only a "whelp" (a young nation) in the latter-days. Is this a conflict? Not at all.  It does not say Judah will be an old lion, but rather that it will be "as an old lion."  I see this as meaning that even though Judah will be merely a "cub" nation (a young one) in the latter days, its fighting skills will be as well-developed as an old (fully mature) lion! The modern geopolitical circumstances of the Mideast have "roused up" in the Israelis the martial skills of the ancient kingdom of Judah which are discussed in the Bible.  The Israeli nation fulfills this prophecy.

A second prophecy is in Zephaniah 2:1-7. Verse 1 states this prophecy is for "the day of the Lord," another common prophetic phrase indicating the end of this age just prior to the Messianic Age. Verse 7 prophesies:

"And the coast shall be for the remnant of Judah; they shall feed thereupon: in the houses of Ashkelon shall they lie down in the evening: for the Lord their God shall visit them, and turn away [end] their captivity."

This prophecy states "the remnant of Judah" will dwell in "the coast" and in "Ashkelon" at the end of this age.  Other ancient Philistine cities "of the seacoast" are mentioned in verse 5 so there is no question the "seacoast" where Judah will dwell is the Eastern Mediterranean seacoast of the area called Palestine. When you look at a map of where the modern Israeli nation began, its heart was in the coastal strip of land along the Mediterranean Sea when the British Mandate came to an end in 1948.  The modern Israeli nation perfectly fulfills this prophecy about "Judah," and this prophecy unmistakably reveals that it is "the will of God" that the tribe of Judah possess the land on which their nation now dwells!

Zephaniah 2:7 also foretells that the "remnant of Judah" will dwell again in their ancient homeland when the God of Israel "turns away [ends] their captivity."  This can be applied two ways and either one fulfills the prophecy.  One can take the long historical view and see that the founding of the Jewish state in 1948 "ended the captivity" [the Diaspora] which began in ancient times. Also, it has a very appropriate fulfillment in the modern era.  The Jews of Europe were in a terrible "captivity" in Europe during the Nazi era of World War II. The people of Judah again established a nation in "the seacoast" in their old homeland after the horrible Nazi captivity was ended. Many captive and oppressed Jews came from death-camps and forced labor-camps in Europe to help found the Israeli nation.

So, in conclusion, biblical prophecy reveals beyond any shadow of doubt that in the latter days, the tribe of Judah will be a young nation exhibiting military prowess, and that it will be located along the Eastern Mediterranean seacoast and the city of Ashkelon will be within its borders. The modern city of Ashkelon is within Israeli territory. The prophecies are clear: the modern Israelis (and also, modern Jews in other nations who provided the settlers for the Israeli nation) are the tribe of Judah!  They are the brother tribe of the nations of the modern house of Israel.

As a historical footnote, if the modern Jewish state had adopted the name "Judah" instead of "Israel" in 1948, there would be less confusion on this subject. The Jewish state took the name "Israel" after "Eretz Israel" [the land of Israel], but its population base was actually the tribe of Judah.

There is much more evidence on this subject supporting the above conclusions, but this should be enough to provide convincing proof on this subject. Those who teach that the Israelis/Jews are not the tribe of Judah either do not understand the prophetic scriptures or they are blind to the obvious messages they contain.  Inspired scriptural prophecies unquestionably confirm the Israelis/Jews are modern Judah.

Geetings and Shalom to all!

Steven Collins