What really happened to the 10 "lost tribes" of Israel?

King Solomon, during his reign had fallen deeply into idolatry because of the influences of his many wives whom he had married from many surrounding nations in violation of God's commandments.

Scripture records;

1 KINGS 11:1-13

1 But king Solomon loved many strange women, together with the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Zidonians, [and] Hittites;

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 cleaved unto these in love.

3 And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart.

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.

5 For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites.

6 And Solomon did evil in the sight of the LORD, and went not fully after the LORD, as [did] David his father.

7 Then did Solomon build an high place for Chemosh, the abomination of Moab, in the hill that [is] before Jerusalem, and for Molech, the abomination of the children of Ammon.

8 And likewise did he for all his strange wives, which burnt incense and sacrificed unto their gods.

9 And the LORD was angry with Solomon, because his heart was turned from the LORD God of Israel, which had appeared unto him twice,

10 And had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods: but he kept not that which the LORD commanded.

11 Wherefore the LORD said unto Solomon, Forasmuch as this is done of thee, and thou hast not kept my covenant and my statutes, which I have commanded thee, I will surely rend the kingdom from thee, and will give it to thy servant.

12 Notwithstanding in thy days I will not do it for David thy father's sake: [but] I will rend it out of the hand of thy son.

13 Howbeit I will not rend away all the kingdom; [but] will give one tribe to thy son for David my servant's sake, and for Jerusalem's sake which I have chosen.

Solomon knew the law of Moses, for every king was required by God to write his own copy of the Law, and to read from it daily.

DEUTERONOMY 17:14-20

14 "When you come to the land which the LORD your God is giving you, and possess it and dwell in it, and say, 'I will set a king over me like all the nations that are around me,'

15 "you shall surely set a king over you whom the LORD your God chooses; one from among your brethren you shall set as king over you; you may not set a foreigner over you, who is not your brother.

16 "But he shall not multiply horses for himself, nor cause the people to return to Egypt to multiply horses, for the LORD has said to you, 'You shall not return that way again.'

17 "Neither shall he multiply wives for himself, lest his heart turn away; nor shall he greatly multiply silver and gold for himself.

18 "Also it shall be, when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, that he shall write for himself a copy of this law in a book, from the one before the priests, the Levites.

19 "And it shall be with him, and he shall read it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the LORD his God and be careful to observe all the words of this law and these statutes,

20 "that his heart may not be lifted above his brethren, that he may not turn aside from the commandment to the right hand or to the left, and that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he and his children in the midst of Israel.

As you can see from the laws given above, Solomon committed at least 4 major sins during his reign.

1. He multiplied wives, which turned his heart away from his God, as we have seen above;

2. He multiplied silver and gold to himself, becoming one of the richest men in history. As Scripture records;

I KINGS 10:14-23

14 The weight of gold that came to Solomon yearly was six hundred and sixty-six talents of gold,

15 besides that from the traveling merchants, from the income of traders, from all the kings of Arabia, and from the governors of the country.

16 And King Solomon made two hundred large shields of hammered gold; six hundred shekels of gold went into each shield.

17 He also made three hundred shields of hammered gold; three minas of gold went into each shield. The king put them in the House of the Forest of Lebanon.

18 Moreover the king made a great throne of ivory, and overlaid it with pure gold.

19 The throne had six steps, and the top of the throne was round at the back; there were armrests on either side of the place of the seat, and two lions stood beside the armrests.

20 Twelve lions stood there, one on each side of the six steps; nothing like this had been made for any other kingdom.

21 All King Solomon's drinking vessels were gold, and all the vessels of the House of the Forest of Lebanon were pure gold. Not one was silver, for this was accounted as nothing in the days of Solomon.

22 For the king had merchant ships at sea with the fleet of Hiram. Once every three years the merchant ships came bringing gold, silver, ivory, apes, and monkeys.

23 So King Solomon surpassed all the kings of the earth in riches and wisdom.

3. He multiplied horses to himself;

I KINGS 4:26

26 And Solomon had forty thousand stalls of horses for his chariots, and twelve thousand horsemen.

4. While he had more than likely made a copy of the Law for himself he failed to read it all the days of his life as commanded, or he would have been aware of his sins, and would not have fallen into idolatry.

Therefore Solomon had no excuse for his actions, and while many acclaim him as one of Israel's greatest kings he could very well be classed with the evil kings for his idolatry, disobedience and rebellion against the Lord.

As a result, God ordained that because of his sins 10 tribes of Israel would rebel and break away from the kingdom during the time of his son. But in remembrance to His promise to David, He kept two tribes, Judah and Benjamin for David's descendants to reign over.

The Lord also kept Judah as the tribe which David's descendants should rule over for He had promised David a dynasty of kings that would come from his lineage. As He told David;

II SAMUEL 7:8-16

8 Now therefore so shalt thou say unto my servant David, Thus saith the LORD of hosts, I took thee from the sheepcote, from following the sheep, to be ruler over my people, over Israel:

9 And I was with thee whithersoever thou wentest, and have cut off all thine enemies out of thy sight, and have made thee a great name, like unto the name of the great [men] that [are] in the earth.

10 Moreover I will appoint a place for my people Israel, and will plant them, that they may dwell in a place of their own, and move no more; neither shall the children of wickedness afflict them any more, as beforetime,

11 And as since the time that I commanded judges [to be] over my people Israel, and have caused thee to rest from all thine enemies. Also the LORD telleth thee that he will make thee an house.

12 And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom.

13 He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever.

14 I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men:

15 But my mercy shall not depart away from him, as I took [it] from Saul, whom I put away before thee.

16 And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever.

Christians will immediately see that the son that God was referring to was His Son, Jesus Christ who would be the descendant of David, and would inherit David's throne as the eternal King of Israel, establishing it forever with His resurrection from the dead. Solomon was never chastised with the stripes of men, but the New Testament records that Jesus was savagely beaten before He went to the cross.

God also kept Judah under the Davidic dynasty so as to fulfill Jacob's ancient prophecy of ;

GENESIS 49:8-10

8 Judah, thou [art he] whom thy brethren shall praise: thy hand [shall be] in the neck of thine enemies; thy father's children shall bow down before thee.

9 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?

10 The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him [shall] the gathering of the people [be].

Ok, back to the main subject.

1 KINGS 11:26-43

26 And Jeroboam the son of Nebat, an Ephrathite of Zereda, Solomon's servant, whose mother's name [was] Zeruah, a widow woman, even he lifted up [his] hand against the king.

27 And this [was] the cause that he lifted up [his] hand against the king: Solomon built Millo, [and] repaired the breaches of the city of David his father.

28 And the man Jeroboam [was] a mighty man of valour: and Solomon seeing the young man that he was industrious, he made him ruler over all the charge of the house of Joseph.

29 And it came to pass at that time when Jeroboam went out of Jerusalem, that the prophet Ahijah the Shilonite found him in the way; and he had clad himself with a new garment; and they two [were] alone in the field:

30 And Ahijah caught the new garment that [was] on him, and rent it [in] twelve pieces:

31 And he said to Jeroboam, Take thee ten pieces: for thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel, Behold, I will rend the kingdom out of the hand of Solomon, and will give ten tribes to thee:

32 (But he shall have one tribe for my servant David's sake, and for Jerusalem's sake, the city which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel:)

33 Because that they have forsaken me, and have worshipped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Milcom the god of the children of Ammon, and have not walked in my ways, to do [that which is] right in mine eyes, and [to keep] my statutes and my judgments, as [did] David his father.

34 Howbeit I will not take the whole kingdom out of his hand: but I will make him prince all the days of his life for David my servant's sake, whom I chose, because he kept my commandments and my statutes:

35 But I will take the kingdom out of his son's hand, and will give it unto thee, [even] ten tribes.

36 And unto his son will I give one tribe, that David my servant may have a light alway before me in Jerusalem, the city which I have chosen me to put my name there.

37 And I will take thee, and thou shalt reign according to all that thy soul desireth, and shalt be king over Israel.

38 And it shall be, if thou wilt hearken unto all that I command thee, and wilt walk in my ways, and do [that is] right in my sight, to keep my statutes and my commandments, as David my servant did; that I will be with thee, and build thee a sure house, as I built for David, and will give Israel unto thee.

39 And I will for this afflict the seed of David, but not for ever.

40 Solomon sought therefore to kill Jeroboam. And Jeroboam arose, and fled into Egypt, unto Shishak king of Egypt, and was in Egypt until the death of Solomon.

41 And the rest of the acts of Solomon, and all that he did, and his wisdom, [are] they not written in the book of the acts of Solomon?

42 And the time that Solomon reigned in Jerusalem over all Israel [was] forty years.

43 And Solomon slept with his fathers, and was buried in the city of David his father: and Rehoboam his son reigned in his stead.

Note that even though God had told Solomon what was going to happen, Solomon in his wickedness and rebellion still tried to thwart God's prophecy and judgment by trying to kill Jeroboam.

God also promised Jeroboam that if he was obedient and followed God all the days of his life, God would make his line a dynasty just as He had promised David, and that his descendants would rule over Israel for many generations. Quite a promise to a young man!

I KINGS 12:1-5

1 And Rehoboam went to Shechem: for all Israel were come to Shechem to make him king.

2 And it came to pass, when Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who was yet in Egypt, heard [of it], (for he was fled from the presence of king Solomon, and Jeroboam dwelt in Egypt;)

3 That they sent and called him. And Jeroboam and all the congregation of Israel came, and spake unto Rehoboam, saying,

4 Thy father made our yoke grievous: now therefore make thou the grievous service of thy father, and his heavy yoke which he put upon us, lighter, and we will serve thee.

5 And he said unto them, Depart yet [for] three days, then come again to me. And the people departed.

The people of Israel must have thought much of Jeroboam to have brought him from Egypt to be their designated leader to speak to Rehoboam. And note that the first thing they did was to ask him for relief from the crushing burden of taxation that Solomon had put them under to finance his wealthy lifestyle.

I KINGS 12:6-14

6 And king Rehoboam consulted with the old men, that stood before Solomon his father while he yet lived, and said, How do ye advise that I may answer this people?

7 And they spake unto him, saying, If thou wilt be a servant unto this people this day, and wilt serve them, and answer them, and speak good words to them, then they will be thy servants for ever.

8 But he forsook the counsel of the old men, which they had given him, and consulted with the young men that were grown up with him, [and] which stood before him:

9 And he said unto them, What counsel give ye that we may answer this people, who have spoken to me, saying, Make the yoke which thy father did put upon us lighter?

10 And the young men that were grown up with him spake unto him, saying, Thus shalt thou speak unto this people that spake unto thee, saying, Thy father made our yoke heavy, but make thou [it] lighter unto us; thus shalt thou say unto them, My little [finger] shall be thicker than my father's loins.

11 And now whereas my father did lade you with a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke: my father hath chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.

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.

13 And the king answered the people roughly, and forsook the old men's counsel that they gave him;

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.

Rehoboam was young and weak, and his companions saw an opportunity to sway the king and rule through him. Rehoboam was also probably heady with the power of being king over such a mighty nation, and thought himself to be all powerful. Power corrupts......

I KINGS 12:15-19

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.

16 So when all Israel saw that the king hearkened not unto them, the people answered the king, saying, What portion have we in David? neither [have we] inheritance in the son of Jesse: to your tents, O Israel: now see to thine own house, David. So Israel departed unto their tents.

17 But [as for] the children of Israel which dwelt in the cities of Judah, Rehoboam reigned over them.

18 Then king Rehoboam sent Adoram, who [was] over the tribute; and all Israel stoned him with stones, that he died. Therefore king Rehoboam made speed to get him up to his chariot, to flee to Jerusalem.

19 So Israel rebelled against the house of David unto this day.

Rehoboam undoubtedly knew of the prophecy of Ahijah the Shilonite concerning the splitting of the kingdom, but the rebellion of the father was passed to the son, and Rehoboam sent the head of the taxation to Israel to force tribute upon them, essentially trying to subjugate them.

But as he quickly found out, the people were in open rebellion against him and he had to flee for his life.

I KINGS 12:20

20 And it came to pass, when all Israel heard that Jeroboam was come again, that they sent and called him unto the congregation, and made him king over all Israel: there was none that followed the house of David, but the tribe of Judah only.

Thus it came to pass that in 931 B.C. the kingdom of Israel became a house divided against itself, a division that would never be healed, and that would pit the two houses of Israel against each other for 208 years when God would command Assyria to destroy the entire northern kingdom of Israel and deport the remnant as captives to Assyria in 723 B.C.

I KINGS 12:21-24

21 And when Rehoboam was come to Jerusalem, he assembled all the house of Judah, with the tribe of Benjamin, an hundred and fourscore thousand chosen men, which were warriors, to fight against the house of Israel, to bring the kingdom again to Rehoboam the son of Solomon.

22 But the word of God came unto Shemaiah the man of God, saying,

23 Speak unto Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and unto all the house of Judah and Benjamin, and to the remnant of the people, saying,

24 Thus saith the LORD, Ye shall not go up, nor fight against your brethren the children of Israel: return every man to his house; for this thing is from me. They hearkened therefore to the word of the LORD, and returned to depart, according to the word of the LORD.

Some people just don't learn, do they? I suspect that the men of Judah listened to the prophet Shemiah more than Rehoboam did, and returned to their homes. Thus God forced Rehoboam to accept the fulfillment of His words to Solomon.

I KINGS 12:25-27

25 Then Jeroboam built Shechem in mount Ephraim, and dwelt therein; and went out from thence, and built Penuel.

26 And Jeroboam said in his heart, Now shall the kingdom return to the house of David:

27 If this people go up to do sacrifice in the house of the LORD at Jerusalem, then shall the heart of this people turn again unto their lord, [even] unto Rehoboam king of Judah, and they shall kill me, and go again to Rehoboam king of Judah.

Despite the fulfillment of the prophecy of the division of the kingdom and his being made king of Israel, Jeroboam still didn't believe the promise of the Lord, apparently thinking that blood ties were stronger than the power of almighty God.

I KINGS 12:28-33

28 Whereupon the king took counsel, and made two calves [of] gold, and said unto them, It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem: behold thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.

29 And he set the one in Bethel, and the other put he in Dan.

30 And this thing became a sin: for the people went [to worship] before the one, [even] unto Dan.

31 And he made an house of high places, and made priests of the lowest of the people, which were not of the sons of Levi.

32 And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like unto the feast that [is] in Judah, and he offered upon the altar. So did he in Bethel, sacrificing unto the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places which he had made.

33 So he offered upon the altar which he had made in Bethel the fifteenth day of the eighth month, [even] in the month which he had devised of his own heart; and ordained a feast unto the children of Israel: and he offered upon the altar, and burnt incense.

How quickly the spiritual rot sets in when one turns from away from God! Jeroboam immediately returned to the idolatry of Israel in the wilderness, by making two golden calves and worshiping them, as well as ordaining priests for the calves from among the worst of the people and causing Israel to follow his wickedness.

However the spiritual wickedness of Israel must have been well-advanced for them to turn so quickly from worshiping the Lord to worshiping the golden calves, knowing very well what had happened in the wilderness when their ancestors had done the very same thing.

Those who know the book of Judges will remember that an Israelite named Micah of the tribe of Ephraim had set up an ephod, a teraphim, a graven image and a molten image in his house in the far north of Israel, and had ordained a Levite to attend to it. They were subsequently forcibly taken from him by the tribe of Dan for worship, so Dan had already fallen into idolatry some time before. Therefore it should come as no surprise that Jeroboam set up a golden calf in the city of Dan and the city of Bethel. (For more information concerning the previous calf in Dan, see Judges chapters 17 and 18)

The books of I Kings and I and II Chronicles record the many wars between Israel and Judah, and the corruption as well as the righteous acts of the kings of both kingdoms, as well as the afflictions to the kingdom of Judah as the Lord had promised.



Finally, in 723 B.C. the Assyrians under Sargon II besieged and destroyed the northern kingdom of Israel, deported the survivors into Assyria and the 10 northern tribes vanished into history.

Or did they?

The Mormon Church teaches that the members of the exiled tribes eventually migrated to North America, and the Mormons believe that they are the descendants of these "lost tribes". However there has never been any historical or archaeological proof for their claims.

In August of 612 B.C.E., Nineveh, the capital of Assyria was destroyed by a coalition of Medes, Babylonians and Scythians under the command of a young crown prince named Nebuchadnezzar. After a 2 month siege, the coalition army diverted the river Khoser into the city, which dissolved the sun-dried brick buildings of the city, in a fascinating fulfillment of Nahum's prophecy against Nineveh when he said;

NAHUM 2:6

6 The gates of the rivers shall be opened, and the palace shall be dissolved.

It was the general policy of the time for conquerors to deport the nobles, craftsmen and artisans of a conquered country into their own country to enrich their culture. Therefore the Jews who were in Nineveh and the surrounding countryside of Assyria who survived the war would have been deported to Babylon as captives.

In 586 B.C.E., Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Jerusalem and Judah and deported it's inhabitants to Babylon for 70 years. Therefore the Jews who were taken captive to Babylon were met by the remnant of the Jews from the 10 "lost" tribes who were already there.

What does Scripture indicate concerning these lost tribes?

JEREMIAH 3:6-18

6 The LORD said also unto me in the days of Josiah the king, Hast thou seen [that] which backsliding Israel hath done? she is gone up upon every high mountain and under every green tree, and there hath played the harlot.

7 And I said after she had done all these [things], Turn thou unto me. But she returned not. And her treacherous sister Judah saw [it].

8 And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went and played the harlot also.

9 And it came to pass through the lightness of her whoredom, that she defiled the land, and committed adultery with stones and with stocks.

10 And yet for all this her treacherous sister Judah hath not turned unto me with her whole heart, but feignedly, saith the LORD.

11 And the LORD said unto me, The backsliding Israel hath justified herself more than treacherous Judah.

12 Go and proclaim these words toward the north, and say, Return, thou backsliding Israel, saith the LORD; [and] I will not cause mine anger to fall upon you: for I [am] merciful, saith the LORD, [and] I will not keep [anger] for ever.

13 Only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against the LORD thy God, and hast scattered thy ways to the strangers under every green tree, and ye have not obeyed my voice, saith the LORD.

14 Turn, O backsliding children, saith the LORD; for I am married unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:

15 And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.

16 And it shall come to pass, when ye be multiplied and increased in the land, in those days, saith the LORD, they shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of the LORD: neither shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit [it]; neither shall [that] be done any more.

17 At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the LORD; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the LORD, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart.

18 In those days the house of Judah shall walk with the house of Israel, and they shall come together out of the land of the north to the land that I have given for an inheritance unto your fathers.

Note several things here. First God calls for the return of deported Israel before Nebuchadnezzar deported the Jews to Babylon. King Josiah reigned between 639-608 B.C.E. which means Jeremiah spoke these words between 22-53 years before the destruction of Jerusalem in 586 B.C.E.

He also said that He would bring them "one of a city, and two of a family" which would make sense if those He spoke of were survivors of a major war such as Nebuchadnezzar waged against Nineveh.

God then speaks of the future, in which He says that the Jews will no longer remember the Ark of the Covenant, neither will they visit it any more.

This means that the Ark of the Covenant will never again be found, despite Man's best efforts to locate it.

Many believe that the Ark of the Covenant was given to the Queen of Sheba by Solomon, because of the Scripture which says;

I KINGS 10:13

13 And king Solomon gave unto the queen of Sheba all her desire, whatsoever she asked, beside [that] which Solomon gave her of his royal bounty. So she turned and went to her own country, she and her servants.

I don't see where they believe this to be the case, as it merely says he granted her wishes in all that she desired. And Solomon had not grown so wicked yet as to give her the Ark of the Covenant. If he had tried, the priests would sure have opposed him, and Scripture would have recorded such an event.

Besides, Solomon died in about 931 B.C.E, and yet Josiah who reigned nearly 300 years later speaks of the Ark. And God would never accept a duplicate of His Ark, so it must have been the real thing.

As Scripture records;

II CHRONICLES 35:1-6

1 Moreover Josiah kept a passover unto the LORD in Jerusalem: and they killed the passover on the fourteenth [day] of the first month.

2 And he set the priests in their charges, and encouraged them to the service of the house of the LORD,

3 And said unto the Levites that taught all Israel, which were holy unto the LORD, Put the holy ark in the house which Solomon the son of David king of Israel did build; [it shall] not [be] a burden upon [your] shoulders: serve now the LORD your God, and his people Israel,

4 And prepare [yourselves] by the houses of your fathers, after your courses, according to the writing of David king of Israel, and according to the writing of Solomon his son.

5 And stand in the holy [place] according to the divisions of the families of the fathers of your brethren the people, and [after] the division of the families of the Levites.

6 So kill the passover, and sanctify yourselves, and prepare your brethren, that [they] may do according to the word of the LORD by the hand of Moses.

So, the Ark remained in Judah until the destruction of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar in 586 B.C.E. There is no mention of the Ark being carried away to Babylon, and the list of items taken by the Babylonians is meticulously described in Scripture. The implements of the Temple service are described as being taken, but the Ark is conspicuously absent.

Jeremiah describes the things taken by the Babylonians as:

JEREMIAH 52:17-26

17 Also the pillars of brass that [were] in the house of the LORD, and the bases, and the brasen sea that [was] in the house of the LORD, the Chaldeans brake, and carried all the brass of them to Babylon.

18 The caldrons also, and the shovels, and the snuffers, and the bowls, and the spoons, and all the vessels of brass wherewith they ministered, took they away.

19 And the basons, and the firepans, and the bowls, and the caldrons, and the candlesticks, and the spoons, and the cups; [that] which [was] of gold [in] gold, and [that] which [was] of silver [in] silver, took the captain of the guard away.

20 The two pillars, one sea, and twelve brasen bulls that [were] under the bases, which king Solomon had made in the house of the LORD: the brass of all these vessels was without weight.

21 And [concerning] the pillars, the height of one pillar [was] eighteen cubits; and a fillet of twelve cubits did compass it; and the thickness thereof [was] four fingers: [it was] hollow.

22 And a chapiter of brass [was] upon it; and the height of one chapiter [was] five cubits, with network and pomegranates upon the chapiters round about, all [of] brass. The second pillar also and the pomegranates [were] like unto these.

23 And there were ninety and six pomegranates on a side; [and] all the pomegranates upon the network [were] an hundred round about.

24 And the captain of the guard took Seraiah the chief priest, and Zephaniah the second priest, and the three keepers of the door:

25 He took also out of the city an eunuch, which had the charge of the men of war; and seven men of them that were near the king's person, which were found in the city; and the principal scribe of the host, who mustered the people of the land; and threescore men of the people of the land, that were found in the midst of the city.

26 So Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard took them, and brought them to the king of Babylon to Riblah.

Jeremiah would have certainly have described the Ark being taken, had it been captured and carried away as booty! Therefore we can only assume that it was hidden by the priests during the siege and that those who knew it's location were killed during the destruction of the city, so that no one knows it's whereabouts to this day, just as God promised.

Ok, back to the main subject.

JEREMIAH 30:1-4

1 The word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying,

2 Thus speaketh the LORD God of Israel, saying, Write thee all the words that I have spoken unto thee in a book.

3 For, lo, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will bring again the captivity of my people Israel and Judah, saith the LORD: and I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it.

4 And these [are] the words that the LORD spake concerning Israel and concerning Judah.

God tells Jeremiah to write His words in a book, that both Israel and Judah would return to the Land after the captivity had ended. Note carefully that He says that both houses would return. Remember, the Northern Kingdom had been destroyed 150 years previously!

After the prophesied 70 years of captivity in Babylon were finished, God stirred up Cyrus the Great, who with a coalition of Medes and Persians conquered Babylon. Scripture then records;

II CHRONICLES 36:22-23

22 Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD [spoken] by the mouth of Jeremiah might be accomplished, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and [put it] also in writing, saying,

23 Thus saith Cyrus king of Persia, All the kingdoms of the earth hath the LORD God of heaven given me; and he hath charged me to build him an house in Jerusalem, which [is] in Judah. Who [is there] among you of all his people? The LORD his God [be] with him, and let him go up.

Ezra 1:1-11

1 Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and [put it] also in writing, saying,

2 Thus saith Cyrus king of Persia, The LORD God of heaven hath given me all the kingdoms of the earth; and he hath charged me to build him an house at Jerusalem, which [is] in Judah.

3 Who [is there] among you of all his people? his God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem, which [is] in Judah, and build the house of the LORD God of Israel, (he [is] the God,) which [is] in Jerusalem.

4 And whosoever remaineth in any place where he sojourneth, let the men of his place help him with silver, and with gold, and with goods, and with beasts, beside the freewill offering for the house of God that [is] in Jerusalem.

5 Then rose up the chief of the fathers of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests, and the Levites, with all [them] whose spirit God had raised, to go up to build the house of the LORD which [is] in Jerusalem.

6 And all they that [were] about them strengthened their hands with vessels of silver, with gold, with goods, and with beasts, and with precious things, beside all [that] was willingly offered.

7 Also Cyrus the king brought forth the vessels of the house of the LORD, which Nebuchadnezzar had brought forth out of Jerusalem, and had put them in the house of his gods;

8 Even those did Cyrus king of Persia bring forth by the hand of Mithredath the treasurer, and numbered them unto Sheshbazzar, the prince of Judah.

9 And this [is] the number of them: thirty chargers of gold, a thousand chargers of silver, nine and twenty knives,

10 Thirty basons of gold, silver basons of a second [sort] four hundred and ten, [and] other vessels a thousand.

11 All the vessels of gold and of silver [were] five thousand and four hundred. All [these] did Sheshbazzar bring up with [them of] the captivity that were brought up from Babylon unto Jerusalem.

Note again, that Scripture is mysteriously silent concerning the Ark of the Covenant. If the Ark had been in Babylon, Cyrus would surely have given it back, and Scripture would have recorded the rejoicing of the people at receiving it back again.

Now comes a very important part of Scripture.

Ezra the scribe, a priest well-versed in the Law of Moses, had been among those who returned from Babylon after Cyrus' decree. Note carefully what he did as recorded by Scripture below.

EZRA 8:35

35 [Also] the children of those that had been carried away, which were come out of the captivity, offered burnt offerings unto the God of Israel, twelve bullocks for all Israel, ninety and six rams, seventy and seven lambs, twelve he goats [for] a sin offering: all [this was] a burnt offering unto the LORD.

Note that Ezra sacrificed for all 12 tribes! This was to purify the people from their sins, and bring them to repentance before the Lord, which means that representatives from all 12 tribes were in Jerusalem, the remnant of Israel returning with the remnant of Judah and Benjamin, as the Lord had promised.

The Lord keeps His promises, and if people would only search the Scriptures, they could discover the truth, and wild theories such as the Mormons ascribe to would be seen for what they are, unfounded theories.

Scripture has proven that the 12 tribes still exist, that the 10 "lost" tribes were never truly lost, and that the remnants of the 10 tribes of the Northern Kingdom of Israel returned to the Land as God had promised. As He prophesied, Israel walks as one with Judah today, as none of the Jews today know what tribe they are from, the genealogical records having been destroyed in the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans in 70 C.E.

This also points to errors in the Mormon religious beliefs for I have proven through Scripture that their doctrine of their being descendants of the "lost" tribes of Israel is false. May the God of the true Israel open their eyes to the truth!

Questions? Comments? E-mail: watchmen_777@yahoo.com

Return to Topics Menu

Return to Main Menu