The History of the Ten "Lost" Tribes/Part 1/Chapter 2
THE WAY ANGLO-ISRAEL WRITERS INTERPRET SCRIPTURE.
Some of their interpretations can only be characterised as bordering on blasphemy. Let me quote a few examples:—
I. The glorious Messianic prophecy of the stone cut without hands which smote the image of Nebuchadnezzar (Daniel ii.) is applied to the British people; and the British Empire, which is one of the Gentile world-kingdoms, is made to be identical with the Kingdom of God.
"We will see what is to be the future of the British Empire, or, in other words, the stone that smote the image. It is to become a great mountain and fill the whole earth. Our Colonial Empire, then, will continue to grow till it covers the whole world. We have tried to avoid extending our Empire many and many a time, and yet God has caused it to grow larger and larger, and I believe will still do so. We are already by far the greatest Empire there is, or ever has been, and we shall yet be far greater.
"The British Empire, again, can never be conquered. Daniel says, 'The God of Heaven shall set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed: it shall stand for ever.' Consequently, we shall never be conquered; we must continue till the end of time—so that we are to continue to exist as the last kingdom or empire this world is to see."
II. Messiah's Throne of Righteousness and Peace is made out to be identical with the throne of England, and the English people are "the saints of the Most High," to whom all the kingdoms of the world shall be given.
"If the Saxons be the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel . . . then the English throne is a continuation of David's throne, and the seed on it must be the seed of David, and the inference is clear—namely, that all the blessings attaching by holy promise to David's throne must belong to England. . . . To this end God is overturning, and will overturn, until the whole world shall be federated around one throne, and that David's throne (which, according to the writer, is identical with the throne of England)—the only throne God ever directly established, and the only one He has promised perpetuity to. . . . This kingdom is the fifth kingdom to be set up in the latter days of those kings, says Daniel. The kingdom was never to be left to other people. . . . To her (that is, to England) was promised the isles of the sea, the coasts of the earth, the waste and desolate places—the heathen and the uttermost parts of the earth as a possession. Already, out of the 51,000,000 square miles which compose the earth, England, including the United States (Manasseh), now owns about 14,000,000, say, one-fourth. She bears rule over one-third of the people of the earth; she adds a colony every four years, on an average. At the present rate it will not be long before the kingdoms of this world will be given to the saints of the Most High [that is, according to the writer, the English people]. It is no marvel in the light of and instruction of prophecy that this throne and people should be so stable and prosperous."
III. The smoke which ascends from the "blazing furnaces and steam engines" of London is identified with the Shechinah Glory, the visible symbol of God's presence with His people.
"During their wanderings in the desert His presence was manifested by the pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night; and during the captivity of the Two Tribes of Judah in Babylon He was with them, until, at the expiration of the seventy years, He stirred up Cyrus to release them. The same Lord still watches over the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel in England, and continues to bless them. The same miracles that were wrought in Egypt were intended to foreshadow the realisation of God's future dealings with the Israelites; and if a gigantic panoramic view of England could be taken from an elevation above the centre of the island at midnight, a temporal pillar of fire would be as remarkable from the blazing furnaces, the gas, the steam-engines, as the pillar of cloud and smoke arising from the same sources in the daytime, marking the chief position and prosperity of Israel."
IV. Edward Hine, author of the forty-seven "Identifications," is the promised Deliverer who should come out of Zion.
The following is taken from an article on Romans xi. 25–27, which appeared in "Life from the Dead," which was edited by Edward Hine himself:—
"Are the British people identical with the lost Ten Tribes of Israel? And is the nation, by the identity, being led to glory? If these things are so, then where is the Deliverer? He must have already come out of Zion. He must be doing His great work; He must be amongst us. It is our impression that, by the glory of the work of the identity, we have come to the time of Israel's national salvation by the Deliverer out of Zion, and that Edward Hine and that Deliverer are identical."
I have said above that Anglo-Israelism applies the promises given to converted Israel indiscriminately to the English nation. It does not stop even here, as the above extracts show, but goes on to rob Christ Himself of His glory by applying to the British people prophecies which belong, not even to Israel, but to Israel's Saviour.
Thus, the address of the Father to the Son in Psalm ii.:
"Ask of Me, and I will give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession," will be found again and again in Anglo-Israel literature applied to the British nation. It also substitutes the British Empire for the Church. A favourite Scripture on which almost every Anglo-Israel writer fastens is Matt. xxi. 43: "Therefore I say unto you, The Kingdom of God shall be taken from you and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof," taking it for granted that England is that "nation"—which, as a nation, is bringing forth the fruits of God's kingdom.
Now I need not explain to you that this is an utterly unspiritual and baseless assumption, for it is the Church—God's elect and converted people out of all nations—which is that "nation," which during the period of Israel's national unbelief bears fruit unto God; as is clear from 1 Peter ii. 9, where believers in Christ are addressed as "a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation (εθνος), that ye should show forth the praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into His marvellous light."
- "Nebuchadnezzar's Dream" in "The British Empire of Ephraim." A whole collection of similar perversions of Scripture may be found in an excellent pamphlet by the late Pastor Frank H. White, called "Anglo-Israelism Examined"—unfortunately now out of print.
- A beautiful specimen, this, of Anglo-Israel logic.
- "The Lost Ten Tribes," by Rev. Joseph Wild, D.D. A book containing twenty discourses which abounds in statements and "interpretations" as wild and unscriptural as this sample quoted from Discourse XVIII.
- From an article in The Banner of Israel.
- When preparing to re-write this little book I was told by a friend that I need not take much notice of the works of Edward Hine, as Anglo-Israelites themselves no longer attach importance to them. On inquiry, however, I found that this was not the case. His writings are still largely advertised and circulated, and many of the more modern Anglo-Israelite writers profess to draw instruction and inspiration from them. Beside which, even his most extravagant statements are more than paralleled in some of their most recent publications.