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Brit-Am Now no. 1661.
Movement of the Ten Tribes of Israel.
7 March 2011, 1 Adar-Sheni 5772.

1. Alexander Zephyr: (a) Good Broadcast and (b) the Metaphor of Dry Bones.
2. Damon
Casale: Muslim Connection to Daniel 11.
3. Challenge to Land of Israel Interpretation of Ezekiel and Brit-Am Reply.
(a) Literal Meaning to be Always Preferred.
(b) Mountains and Hills.
(c) Waste Lands.
(d) Will All Israelites Return to the Land of Israel or Only a Portion of Them?


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1. Alexander Zephyr: (a) Good Broadcast and (b) the Metaphor of Dry Bones.
Hello, Yair.

(a) Broadcast.
Brit-Am Radio Interview with Rachel Cohen and Cynthia Grace.
 Good job!

(b) The Metaphor of Dry Bones.
             A couple of words in connection with the "dry bones."
That they are connected to a literal resurrection of the dead may easily be seen from symbolic metaphorical language Ezekiel uses all over the entire book. Just consider:

 "I will sprinkle clean water upon you, and you shall be clean. And a new heart will I put within you" (Ezekiel 36).

Nobody would understand these passages as if God will give a bath or shower to His people in order to wash them because they were dirty; or transplant by means of surgery "a new heart" because of  the physical failure of an existing human heart.

Ezekiel 11:
19 Then I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within them, and take the stony heart out of their flesh, and give them a heart of flesh,

What is the meaning of a people having "one heart"? Is it really possible for  nations to have one undivided human heart? Do we have to believe that the house of Israel have hearts made of stone?

"Behold, I, even I, will search My sheep and seek them out. And I bring them out from the peoples, and gather them from the countries. I will feed them in a good pasture" (Ezekiel 34:11-14).

Not one student of the Bible take these words literally as if God is speaking of  real sheep whom He is going to "feed in a good pasture".
Without any hesitation, anyone would understand that "sheep" here is a mere metaphor for the people of Israel.
And " feed in a good pasture" means spiritual restoration to the Laws of Moses, to the Torah, to Rebuild Temple and return to the God of Israel.
"I will open the graves. I will put My spirit in you. Then shall you know that I am the Lord" (Ezekiel 37).
 Here it is the same story. Why would we interpret the "open graves" as a real physical resurrection of the dead if the Prophet had not meant literal resurrection at all?

The similes of "water", "new heart", "new spirit", "sheep", "heart of stone", "dry bones", and "open graves" are perfectly in line with metaphorical symbolism the Prophet Ezekiel  used throughout his entire book, according to Maimonides!

Thanks, Alexander Zephyr.

2. Damon Casale: Muslim Connection to Daniel 11.
RE: Brit-Am Now no. 1660
#2. Answer to Question on Daniel 11 and Prototypical Prophecies.

Regarding possible fulfillments of Daniel 11, it's interesting to note that Daniel 11:45 mentions that a particular king of the north would "plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas on the glorious holy mountain [the Temple Mount]".  There is actually a historical fulfillment of this, by Abd Al Malik and his son, Al Walid.  Abd Al Malik built the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount, and *Al Walid built four palaces there as well*.

Whatever the future fulfillment of this prophecy might be, it's certainly intriguing to note the strong connection to the Muslims.

3. Challenge to Land of Israel Interpretation of Ezekiel and Brit-Am Reply.
From: DM
Reply to Gog and Magog articles

Alexander Zephyr WROTE:
# The Mountains of Israel throughout the Bible are everywhere identified with the Land of Israel (Ezekiel 36:1, 8-12; 37:22; 38:8; 39:4).  It is also recorded in Scripture and secular history that the Land of Israel and the Mountains of Israel are synonymous and connote no difference in their intention. After the exile of the Jewish People by the Romans in 135 CE, for 2000 years they indeed 'had been desolate and continual waste' (Ezekiel 38:8) .#

Let's take those claims for a test drive to see if they really stand up to scriptural scrutiny.  First off every passage starting with Ezekiel 36:1 all the way to 39:4 that Alexander Zephyr refers to are passages referring to these latter days Ezekiel is predicting!!  Zephyr doesn't list any passages that do not refer to the actual prophecy at hand. 
Furthermore, even if he had it would not confirm his assertions because there are examples in scripture where the Bible does in fact use similar names to identify different entities... His assertion, "It is also recorded in Scripture and secular history that the Land of Israel and the Mountains of Israel are synonymous and connote no difference in their intention." he does not back up.  And his claim that Israel 'had been desolate and continual waste'  the many Arabs and Jews that have resided there for hundreds of years would say otherwise.

Brit-Am Reply:
We do not want to get too involved in this debate. Alexander Zephyr is quite capable of defending himself on these issues very well.
What is more on several points our own opinion is different.
Nevertheless here are a few remarks concerning the present issue:

(a) Literal Meaning to be Always Preferred.
It is true that Scripture sometimes uses a specific geographic designation to refer to another.
The Mountains of Israel could mean the nations of Israel overseas but we doubt it.
There is a principle that Scripture should be interpreted as literally as possible except where the verses themselves lead as to do otherwise.
See our Answers to Queries on The Literal Meaning of Prophecy:
In this case Ezekiel speaks of the Mountains of Israel and according to the simple meaning is referring to those of the Land of Israel. This also fits in with the whole gist of the Prophecy:
The Tribes of Israel will have returned and divided the Land of Israel between them. They will be dwelling securely and prosperously. Gog and Magog then attack them.
What is the problem?
The simple meaning of the text says that this scenario takes place in the Land of Israel. Why should it not?

(b) Mountains and Hills.
Mountains? There are mountains in the Land of Israel. The word in Hebrew translated as Mountains is "Harim" or "Hari Yisrael" translated as "Mountains of Israel".  Har (singular) and Harim (plural) and Hari (adjectival-adjunctive) means not only Mountains but ALSO hills.
The present State of Israel may not appear very mountainous by international standards but it is definitely hilly. In fact the areas of Judah and Samaria which are the real heart of the Land are nearly all hills. I am not familiar with the USA but I would say from what I know that the area of Israel on the whole is MUCH MORE hilly and mountainous than MOST of the USA! In addition the land of Israel extends from the Nile to the Euphrates and includes some very mountainous areas (even by international standards) such as Lebanon, Syria, and parts of Turkey.
Land of Israel.
To say that the Mountains [or "Hills" as the Hebrew original text can be rendered] of Israel means Hills or Mountains in the Land of Israel is simple reading comprehension. It does not need to be backed up because this is what it says.
To say otherwise is what needs to be proven.

(c) Waste Lands.
As for waste lands.
The Land of Israel really was relatively waste before the Jewish settlers and Zionists with British help began to develop it.
The American writer Mark Twain described in 1867 the impressions of a visit he paid to the region:

"Of all the lands there are for dismal scenery, I think Palestine must be the prince. . . . Palestine sits in sackcloth and ashes. . . . Rags, wretchedness, poverty, and dirt, those signs and symbols that indicated the presence of Moslem rule more surely than the crescent-shaped flag itself, abound."

"..... A desolate country whose soil is rich enough, but is given over wholly to weeds... a silent mournful expanse.... a desolation.... we never saw a human being on the whole route.... hardly a tree or shrub anywhere. Even the olive tree and the cactus, those fast friends of a worthless soil, had almost deserted the country." (The Innocents Abroad, p. 361-362)

Even now much still remains to be done. In Judah and Sarmaria you can go for long distances through potentially fertile areas and see very few inhabitants. The same applies to the so-far unliberated Israelite regions of Sinai, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, etc. Not only that but the Israelites will repossess these areas after an armed struggle and who knows what state they will then be in?

(d) Will All Israelites Return to the Land of Israel or Only a Portion of Them?
I would say that this is really the whole point of the question. If we say that all the Israelites will return to the Land of Greater Israel then obviously the Gog and Magog episode must make place in the Holy Land. If however we say that only a portion return then other options may be considered.

Elsewhere we have discussed whether literally ALL Israelites will return to the Land of Israel or only representative sections while the others remain in the lands they have inherited elsewhere.

#4.  If all the Lost Ten Tribes Return to the Land of Israel will there be Enough Room for them?

At all events, there are prophecies that take place outside the Land of Israel as indicated by the Prophecies themselves.
There are Prophecies that take place within the Land of Israel.
To interpret a Prophecy that according to the literal meaning will happen in the Land of Israel as really happening outside the Land NEEDS more of an indication from the Prophecy itself  than Ezekiel has given.

The bottom line from a Brit-Am point of view is that these matters at present are largely theoretical.
We should concentrate on proof as to who the Ten Tribes today are and on spreading this information.

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