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Sunday, March 25 2012
The Crease Of Israel
If someone wants to tear a piece of paper (or "rend" a cloth, as we shall read) in a particular way, putting, or following, a fold, or crease, in the paper will serve as a guide for the tear to happen in the desired, or at least predictable, way. History shows how political creases, natural or man-made, can also exist, so that if a tear ever happens, it's apparent beforehand where it is most-likely, or even inevitable, to happen.
Two hypothetical examples:
If you live in present-day Canada, what would you think of a political situation where the elected Prime Minister is always Canadian-born, but at the same time must be from just one specific province? For example, what would you think of a situation where the Prime Minister always had to be someone born in Alberta, with the national capital a city in Alberta?
The same principle as the two examples above, but which actually happened:
If you lived in Israel at the time of King David, what would you think of a political situation where the King is always Israelite-born, but at the same time must be from just one specific tribe? For example, what would you think of a situation where the King always had to be someone born in Judah, with the national capital a city in Judah?
The tribes of Israel, named after the sons of Jacob ("the LORD God" renamed Jacob as "Israel"; see Appearances Of The LORD God and Where Jacob Became Israel) were Reuben, Simeon, Levi (see Are Levites 'Jews'?), Judah (see Who Were The First Jews?), Dan, Naphtali, Gad, Asher, Issachar, Zebulun, Joseph and Benjamin. Joseph's sons Ephraim and Manasseh later also became tribes of Israel when Jacob/Israel adopted those two of his grandsons as sons (see Why Did Jacob Adopt Ephraim And Manasseh?).
King David, who was of the tribe of Judah, became king of all of the tribes of Israel after the Israelite civil war between David and Saul.
"3:1 Now there was long war between the house of Saul and the house of David [see The Civil War Kings]: but David waxed stronger and stronger, and the house of Saul waxed weaker and weaker." (2 Samuel 3:1 KJV)
In obedience to the command of the LORD, David then took Jerusalem and made it his capital city.
"5:6 And the king and his men went to Jerusalem unto the Jebusites [see A History Of Jerusalem: Jebus Of Canaan], the inhabitants of the land: which spake unto David, saying, Except thou take away the blind and the lame, thou shalt not come in hither: thinking, David cannot come in hither. 5:7 Nevertheless David took the strong hold of Zion: the same is the city of David [see A History Of Jerusalem: The City Of David].
"I will surely rend the kingdom from thee"
From that point on, the successive (son after father) king of the tribe of Judah would automatically be the king of all of the tribes of Israel, and the capital city of Judah, Jerusalem, would automatically also be the capital of all of Israel. The "crease" for a tear, should it come, thereby existed in the fabric (which means "a fabricated structure") of Israel.
During times of political difficulty, the stress was greatest at the crease - as in this example after one of David's sons, Absalom, staged a coup against his father, forcing David to flee out of the tribal territory of Judah, across the Jordan River, into the territory of other Israelite tribes (see also On The Brink Of Civil War to see how the Jordan River itself had been a political "crease" when the Israelites first came to their "promised land").
David's return to Judah was resented by both sides of the "crease" between Judah and the rest of the tribes i.e. "the men of Israel answered the men of Judah, and said, We have ten parts in the king, and we have also more right in David than ye: why then did ye despise us, that our advice should not be first had in bringing back our king? And the words of the men of Judah were fiercer than the words of the men of Israel."
"19:39 And all the people went over Jordan. And when the king was come over, the king kissed Barzillai, and blessed him; and he returned unto his own place.
David was succeeded by his son Solomon - who, although very wise in his youth, became grossly corrupt in his later years (see A History Of Jerusalem: The Glory Of Solomon). The result was that the LORD declared that He would tear the kingdom into two pieces ("I will surely rend the kingdom from thee"). Where? As we will read, right along the existing crease between Judah and the rest of the tribes of Israel who had been successively ruled by Judah.
"11:1 But king Solomon loved many strange women, together with the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Zidonians, and Hittites; 11:2 Of the nations concerning which the LORD said unto the children of Israel, Ye shall not go in to them, neither shall they come in unto you: for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods: Solomon clave unto these in love. 11:3 And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart. 11:4 For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the LORD his God, as was the heart of David his father. 11:5 For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites. 11:6 And Solomon did evil in the sight of the LORD, and went not fully after the LORD, as did David his father.
The tear occurred in the time of Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, exactly as the LORD said that it would happen ("I will rend it out of the hand of thy son").
"12:12 So Jeroboam and all the people came to Rehoboam the third day, as the king had appointed, saying, Come to me again the third day. 12:13 And the king answered the people roughly, and forsook the old men's counsel that they gave him; 12:14 And spake to them after the counsel of the young men, saying, My father made your yoke heavy, and I will add to your yoke: my father also chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions. 12:15 Wherefore the king hearkened not unto the people; for the cause was from the LORD, that he might perform his saying, which the LORD spake by Ahijah the Shilonite unto Jeroboam the son of Nebat.
Fact Finder: (a) Who ruled Israel and Judah after they divided? (b) How and when did the northern kingdom become "the lost ten tribes"? (c) When will Israel and Judah be reunited? (d) Which royal line is Jesus Christ the heir? Israel or Judah?
This Day In History, March 25
421: The traditional date of the founding of the city of Venice, Italy.
752: Pope Stephen II died only 2 days after his election.
1199: England's King Richard I ("Richard the Lionheart") was wounded by a crossbow bolt while fighting France. He died from complications of the wound (infection) on April 6. Richard had been active in the "Crusades" (see Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy).
1306: Robert de Bruce was crowned Robert I the Bruce of Scotland at Scone. He led the forces that freed Scotland from English rule in 1328.
1409: The Council of Pisa, formed to try to end the schism in the Catholic church between popes Gregory and Benedict, began meetings at Pisa (see The Struggle For The Papacy).
1584: Sir Walter Raleigh was granted a patent to establish an English colony in "Virginia."
1634: The Roman Catholic church gained a foothold in the continent of North America when the ships Dove and Ark arrived with 128 Catholic colonists in what would later become "Mary Land." They had been selected by Cecilus Calvert, second Lord Baltimore.
1655: Christian Huygens discovered Titan, Saturn's largest moon.
1669: 20,000 were killed by the eruption of Mount Etna in Sicily.
1799: During the French Revolutionary Wars, 40,000 French troops under Jourdan battled 60,000 Austrians under Archduke Charles at the Battle of Stokach.
1807: The British Parliament abolished the slave trade in areas under British control.
1895: Italian troops invaded Abyssinia (Ethiopia).
1911: 146 immigrant women, mostly Jewish and Italian, died when New York's worst industrial fire swept through a factory owned by the Triangle Shirtwaist Company.
1924: King George of Greece was deposed and a republic proclaimed.
1941: Yugoslavia joined the Tripartite Pact, a military alliance directed against the U.S. and Britain.
1955: East Germany was granted full sovereignty by its occupying power, the USSR.
1957: The Treaty of Rome was signed, providing for the establishment of the European Common Market (see Ein Volk! Ein Reich! Ein Euro!).
1958: The first flight of the CF-105, the Avro Arrow, at Malton, Ontario.
1961: The Soviet Sputnik 10 carried a dog into Earth orbit, later recovered.
1970: The Concorde made its first supersonic flight.
1975: King Faisal of Saudi Arabia was assassinated by his nephew Prince Faisal.
1994: Neo-Nazis firebombed a synagogue in Luebeck, believed to be the first such incident in Germany since the end of the Second World War.