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The Regathering: The Lost Tribes of Israel: Jewish or Hebrew? Module 4  

 

Throughout this course we will discover the beautiful Semitic people groups throughout the world. However, not all Semitic people identify as Jewish.  In this module we will take a closer look at the origins of the descendants of  (Ashkenaz), the son of Gomer, of the family line of Japheth, and a grandson of Noah. We will discover that the term Jewish does not imply to the exclusive descendants of Shem.”

Isaiah 12:11-12:

“And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of His people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea. And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth.”

As we have discovered in the previous modules of this study, the (Assyrian Exile) and the (Babylonian Exile) brought dispersed people throughout the world.  The exiled Hebrews that fled to the Mediterranean Region, became known as Sepharadim, based on the word Sepharad (which means “Spain” in Hebrew). Sephard is mentioned by name in the Bible.”

Obadiah 1:20:

“And that exiled force of Israelites [shall possess] what belongs to the Phoenicians as far as Zarephath (France), while the Jerusalemite exile community of Sepharad (Spain) shall possess the towns of the Negeb.”

There are also Hebrews that identify as Mizrahi, Teimani, and Yemenite.  These terms derive from the locations that had flourishing Hebrew communities.  Although most American Jewry identifies as Ashkenazi or Sephardic; in this study we will discover the lesser known Semitic groups scattered throughout the world.  Now, let’s take a closer look at the origins the (Ashkenazim).”

ASHKENAZI: The Caucasian Sons of Jepthah Dwelling In the Tents of Shem: How The Ashkenazi Became Jewish:

Ashkenaz is mentioned in the Bible in (Genesis 10:2-3; and 1 Chronicles 1:5-6). Noah’s son Japheth begat Gomer, who begat Ashkenaz.”

Genesis 10:2-3:

The sons of Japheth were Gomer, Magog, Madai, Javan, Tubal, Meshech, and Tiras. The sons of Gomer were Ashkenaz, Riphath, and Togarmah.

1 Chronicles 1:6:

“The sons of Japheth: Gomer, Magog, Madai, Javan, Tubal, Meshek and Tiras.   The sons of Gomer: Ashkenaz, Riphath and Togarmah.”

The scriptures suggest that the descendants of Ashkenaz originate from the  line of  Noah’s son Japheth – not Shem.   History traces the descendants of Ashkenaz  as those who dwelled in the Caucus Mountain Region (Ukraine/Turkey), i e. the Russian Steps and into Europe.”

There is much speculation about the origins of the Ashkenazim.  Some scholars claim that the Ashkenazim are the descendants from the Judeans who fled into Europe.  The Europeans shortened the word Judean and the dispersed Judeans became known as “Jews” and the religious practices of the Judeans became known as Judaism.”

However, some scholars claim that the forensically researched origins of people self-identifying as Ashkenazi converted to Judaism centuries ago, intermarried throughout Europe, codified the law of Moses, kept the Torah, and established a lifestyle based on the oral and written tradition of the Law of Moses.

Through the ages, the Ashkenazim experienced much persecution, yet they kept the Laws of Moses and established a lifestyle based on the Toray. If the Ashkenazi are truly converts of non-Semitic origin, their conversion is inherently noble and honorable.  In fact, the most revered and influential rabbinical scholars were also converts including Rabbis Akiva, and the Maimonides.  According to (Isaiah 56) God promises to bless all those who join His global family.

The Khazar Kingdom:

The descendants of Ashkenaz became a great Kingdom Known as the (Khazar’s) who migrated from the Caucus Mountain region into Northern and Eastern Europe.  Thus, the term Caucasian refers to those who are from the region of the caucus mountains and should not be confused with the term Anglo-Saxon which refers to those of European descent.

Ashkenaz was first associated with the Scythian region, then later with the Slavic territories near the Russian steps in the Caucus Mountain region.  Ancient Assyria texts also mention Ashkenaz as the people who expelled the (Cimmerians) from the Armenian highland of the Upper Euphrates region.

According to the Encyclopaedia Biblica, “Ashkenaz were one of the migratory peoples, which in the time of Esar-haddon, burst upon the northern provinces of Asia Minor, and upon Armenia and from the 11th century onwards, towards Germany and northern Europe.

The territory of the Khazars occupied a strategic key position. Sheltered by the Caucus Mountains at the vital gateway between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea.  The protective barrier of the Caucus mountains, enabled the Khazar armies to effectively block Arab aggression in its most devastating early stages, and thus prevented the Muslim conquest of Eastern Europe.  Had it not been for the Khazars Kingdom’s stand against Muslim invasion into Europe, history would have taken a very different turn.  Later, in rabbinic literature from the 11th century, Ashkenaz was considered the ruler of a kingdom in the North and of the Northern and Germanic people.  The region of Ashkenaz was then centered on the Rhineland and the Palatinate in what is now the westernmost part of Germany.

 

How The Ashkenazi Became Jewish:

 

After diverting Arab invasion, the Khazars became more powerful than they had previously been. A few years later, probably AD 740, (King Bulan), his court, and the military ruling class embraced the Jewish faith, and Judaism became the state religion of the Khazars.”

It was an emerging practical trend for kingdoms to adopt in mass one of the four major Abrahamic religions – Judaism, Islam, or one of the two Christian branches of Roman Catholic or Greek Orthodox. However, at that time the Christian/Muslim religions each had powerful leaders whose strength was used to dominate and extract money from surrounding kingdoms. So, either the King Bulan was inspired or choose Judaism so that the Khazar kingdom would be independent from the restraints of the adjacent states.

Until the ninth century, the Khazars had no rivals to their supremacy in the regions north of the Black Sea and the adjoining steppe and forest regions of the Dnieper. The Khazars were the supreme masters of the southern half of Eastern Europe for a century and a half, and presented a mighty bulwark, blocking the Ural–Caspian gateway from Asia into Europe. During this whole period, they held back the onslaught of the nomadic tribes from the East.

 

The general picture that emerges from these fragmentary pieces of information is that the Khazar communities migrated into  Eastern Europe – mainly Russia and Poland. This has lead several historians to believe that the majority of Ashkenazi Jewry – are Khazar descendants from the lineage of Japhteth.

The far-reaching implications of this hypothesis explain the great caution exercised by historians.  Many scholars avoid this subject all together. 

A radical proponent of the Khazar hypothesis was A. N. Poliak, a professor of Mediaeval Jewish History at Tel Aviv University.  In his book Khazaria, he writes that the facts demanded a new approach.  Ashkenazi Jewry has become the nucleus of world Jewry on the world’s stage.   While  indigenous Semitic communities are rarely recognized.  The story of the Khazar Empire, as it slowly emerges from the past, begins to look like the most of what we have been taught about history excludes the recognition of  Semitic people all over the world.”

Semitic People Around The World.

When the children of Israel were dispersed across the globe, they assimilated to foreign regions and intermarried with the indigenous population taking on the racial identity of the location. The dispersed people that fled to Europe look European. The dispersed people that fled to China look Chinese. The dispersed people that fled to India look Indian. The dispersed people that fled to Africa look African.”

Numbers 15:15:

“As for the congregation, there shall be one statute both for you, and for the stranger that sojourneth with you, a statute for ever throughout your generations; as ye are, so shall the stranger be before the Lord.”

1 Samuel 16:7b:

For man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.”

Arab Speaking Hebrews:

During the 1700’s the European Jewish leaders began urging mass migration back to Israel to join the Israelites who had never left the land.  Letters were sent in search of the scattered camps of surviving ‘Lost Tribes’ of Israel

2 Kings 25:12:

“But some of the poorest in the land were left by the chief of the guards, to be vinedressers and field hands.”

 

In Hebrew with English Subtitles

An incredible yet strange phenomenon exists in Israel.  Among the residents of certain territories like the West Bank, there are hundreds of thousands of indigenous people who are identified as “Palestinians,” yet (about 25%) of the indigenous people of Israel who identify as Arab claim to actually have Hebrew origin; but converted to Islam centuries ago.   In Israel there is a famous village known to be exclusively inhabited by descendants of hidden Hebrews. Yatta is located in the “West Bank,” and has a reputation for being a cornerstone in the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. The family clans of Yatta self identify as being of the children of Israel. “

(2 Kings 25:12) states, not all of the people of Israel were sent into exile, the poorest remained in order to continue working and tilling the land. The description of the family clans from Yatta, details their family name meaning wine makers.”

The Hebrew Diaspora In China: The Kaifeng Hebrews:

Over history scattered Jewish communities (of the European diaspora) have popped up in far away regions, most notably in Kaifeng China, and on the West Coast of India. Having resettled in foreign regions, the Jewish people had married women of local origin.  However, as we will learn later on in this course, there were many Israelite exile communities in these regions well before European Jewry settled there. 

 

 

 

The Hebrew Presence In India: Bene Israel (The Sons of Israel):

The Bene Israel aka “The Sons of Israel,” or the “Shanivar Teli” caste are a community of Hebrews in India. It has been suggested that Bene Israel consists of descendants of one of the disputed Lost Tribes  who had settled there centuries ago. “

 

 

The history of the Semitic people in India reaches back to ancient times. Indian Hebrews are a religious minority of India, but, unlike many parts of the world, have historically lived in India without any instances of anti-Semitism from the local majority populace. The better-established ancient communities have assimilated a large number of local traditions through cultural diffusion. While some Indian Hebrews state their ancestors arrived in India during the time of the Kingdom of Judah, others identify themselves as descendants of Israel’s Ten Lost Tribes. It is estimated that India’s Hebrew population peaked at around 20,000 in the mid-1940s, and began to rapidly decline due to their emigration to Israel after its creation in 1948. Read this on Wikipedia

As the course continues, we will also learn about the dispersed people’s journeys into Africa and across the Silk Road. “

Course Modules:

MODULE 1: Biblical Prophecy & The Lost Tribes of Israel

MODULE 2: Biblical Prophecy & The Lost Tribes of Israel

MODULE 3: Biblical Prophecy & The Lost Tribes of Israel

MODULE 4: Biblical Prophecy & The Lost Tribes of Israel – (Jewish or Hebrew)

MODULE 5: Biblical Prophecy & The Lost Tribes of Israel

MODULE 6: Biblical Prophecy & The Lost Tribes of Israel – (Pashtun)

MODULE 7: Biblical Prophecy & The Lost Tribes of Israel – (Silk Road)

MODULE 8: Biblical Prophecy & The Lost Tribes of Israel – (Africa)

MODULE 9: Biblical Prophecy & The Lost Tribes of Israel – (Trans Atlantic Slave Trade)

MODULE 10: Biblical Prophecy & The Lost Tribes of Israel (Next Step)

I-TRIBE: Connecting Semitic Communities Around The World

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