C Á P S U L A S 122
Por: J. N. Robles Olarte
RESTAURATION OF THE ETERNAL´S TEMPLE
by Charles J. Voss
As the troubles in the Middle East mount there has been much speculation in all walks of religious activity concerning the reconstruction of the Jewish Temple on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The Hebrew Scriptures speak plainly of the restoration of all thirteen tribes of Israel in the Davidic monarchy and the construction of the Third Temple in Jerusalem.
This series of prophecies concerning end-time Israel and the restored Temple are in the book of Ezekiel. The theme of the book of Ezekiel is “Judgment and Glory for All of Israel.” The date of the writing is approximately the sixth century BCE, after the ten tribes of Israel had gone into captivity and during the time of Judah’s captivity. Keep in mind whenever you read the prophecies in Ezekiel they are about Israel but Israel has never heard these prophecies. Why? Because by Ezekiel’s time Israel was already in captivity and had already been moved out of the area. Babylon had begun to push against Assyria and Assyria pushed the ten tribes towards Europe, so they were no longer there to hear Ezekiel’s word. This is shown in Scofield’s Notes:
Ezekiel, a priest whose name means CREATOR will strengthen, was among the Jewish exiles carried away to Babylon between the first and final deportation of Judah (2 Kings 24:l1-16).
His book shows him as a man of stern integrity and strong purpose, completely devoted to the practices of his priestly duties. … Unlike the pre-exilic prophets, whose ministry was primarily either to Judah or to the ten-tribe kingdom, or to both, Ezekiel was the voice of ETERNAL to “the whole house of Israel.” 1
The purpose of Ezekiel’s ministry was to:
Warn ALL Israel of an end-time future captivity and exile. In addition, he warned of the national sins that had brought Israel so low and how the exact same sins of B-al worship will do it again in the end-time.
To sustain the faith of the Jewish exiles by prediction of national restoration and of the execution of justice upon the oppressors.
To proclaim the end-time glory of the Davidic monarchy; consisting of all 13 Israelite tribes:
Observe that the Glory of ETERNAL departed from the city of Jerusalem just before its destruction. The Glory will return to Jerusalem in the millennia period. No temple in Jerusalem has known the presence of the Glory of the ETERNAL in this manner since 586 BC” 2 (the date of the destruction of Solomon’s Temple).
The trail of our CREATOR’s Shekinah 3 Glory is the key to understanding the Third Temple. We will follow the trail.
|Step 1||Ezekiel 9:3 “Now the glory of the CREATOR of Israel had gone up from the cherub, where it had been, to the threshold of the temple.
“It is noteworthy that to Ezekiel, the priest, was given the vision of the glory of ETERNAL departing:
|Step 2||Ezekiel 10:18 “Then the glory of ETERNAL departed from the threshold of the temple and stood over the cherubim.”|
|Step 3||Ezekiel 11:23 “And the glory of ETERNAL went up from the midst of the city and stood on the mountain, which is on the east side of the city.”
“The departure of the divine glory (the visible symbol of CREATOR’s presence) from the Temple marks the end of the Theocratic Kingdom in OT history. …The visible glory will return when the Kingdom is restored to Israel (Ezekiel 43:1 – 7).” 5
|Step 4||Ezekiel 43:2-5 “And behold, the glory of the CREATOR of Israel came from the way of the east. His voice was like the sound of many waters; and the earth shone with His glory. It was like the appearance of the vision, which I saw like the vision, which I saw when I 6 came to destroy the city. The visions were like the vision, which I saw by the River Chebar; and I fell on my face. And the Glory of ETERNAL came into the temple by way of the gate, which faces toward the east. The Spirit lifted me up and brought me into the inner court; and behold, the Glory of ETERNAL filled the temple.”|
Much is being said about the restoration of the Temple, who will build it, and when will it be built. The first Temple was Solomon’s; the second Temple was Hezekiah’s which was extensively remodeled by Herod. The Mashiach, King David will build the Third Temple in Jerusalem and it WILL NOT be built before that time:
Zechariah 6:12-13 “Then speak to him [Joshua], saying, ‘Thus says ETERNAL of hosts, saying: Behold, the man [King David] whose name is the BRANCH! From his place [in the grave], he shall branch out, and he shall build the Temple of ETERNAL. Yes, he shall build the Temple of ETERNAL. He shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule on his throne. So he [Elijah] shall be a priest on His throne, and the counsel of peace shall be between them both [King David and Elijah].”‘
The Third Temple will be a physical Temple, and then after it is built ETERNAL states He will dwell there:
Ezekiel 43:7 “And He said to me, `Son of man, this is the place of My throne and the place of the soles of My feet, where I will dwell in the midst of the Children of Israel forever. No more shall the House of Israel defile My righteous Name, they nor their kings, by their harlotry or with the carcasses of their kings on their high places.'”
The English word “dwell” in verse seven is from the Hebrew word 7 “shakan” and means to reside or permanently stay. Note the resemblance to the word “Shekinah.”
Thus, ETERNAL will put His Shekinah Glory into this Third Temple and He will dwell there among His people forever. Another scripture that states the same is: Haggai 2:1-5 “In the seventh month, on the twenty-first of the month, the word of ETERNAL came by Haggai the prophet, saying: ‘Speak now to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and to the remnant of the people, saying: Who is left among you who saw this temple in its former glory? And how do you see it now? In comparison with it, is this not in your eyes as nothing? Yet now be strong, Zerubbabel,’ says ETERNAL; ‘and be strong, Joshua, son of Jehozadak, the high priest; and be strong, all you people of the land,’ says ETERNAL, ‘and work; for I am with you,’ says ETERNAL of hosts. ‘According to the word that I covenanted with you when you came out of Egypt, so My Spirit remains among you; do not fear!'”
That verse is saying that although the Shekinah Glory of the ETERNAL left the first physical Temple and it will not be back until the Third-the final Temple is built. He states My Spirit remains among you fear not! Therefore, we do have access to ETERNAL and His Righteous Spirit now, today. Then again, our CREATOR promises peace:
Haggai 2:6-9 “For thus says ETERNAL of hosts: ‘Once more (it is a little while) I will shake heaven and earth, the sea and dry land. And I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this Temple with Glory,’ says ETERNAL of Hosts. The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,’ says ETERNAL of Hosts. ‘The Glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former,’ says ETERNAL of Hosts. ‘And in this place I will give peace,’ says ETERNAL of Hosts.”
There will come a day when both Houses of Israel will be at peace, when the ETERNAL will again dwell among His people. However, that is yet a ways off because before the destruction and regathering of Israel, a work is being done in the end-time: A work that is dedicated to working for the reuniting of Israel. A work that will tell Israel who they are and what their sins are; in hope they will repent. For ETERNAL in speaking to Solomon about the first Temple has stated:
2 Chronicles 7:12-14 (TLB) “One night ETERNAL appeared to Solomon and told him, ‘I have heard your prayer and have chosen this Temple as the place where I want you to sacrifice to me. If I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or if I command the locust swarms to eat up all of your crops, or if I send an epidemic among you. 14 Then if My people will humble themselves and pray, and search for Me, and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear them from heaven and forgive their sins and heal their land. I will listen, wide awake, to every prayer made in this place. For I have chosen this Temple and sanctified it to be My home forever; My eyes and My heart shall always be here.”
The world should be on notice if the State of Israel falls; that would accelerate the “Time of Jacob’s Trouble.” What would soon happen afterwards would be catastrophic for the Commonwealth of Greater Israel with 2/3 dying in war and pestilence and 1/3 being taken into captivity.
Then ETERNAL would come down to earth and stand on the Mount of Olives. He would raise the Mashiach (Messiah), King David, and the Prophet Elijah from their graves. While King David gathered the remnant of Israel out of concentration camps, the Prophet would turn the hearts of the children [the captives] to the fathers [Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob] and the fathers to the children.
Regardless who you may think the Jews and Jewish people are does not affect how this is played out. The reason is, regardless of what your thoughts may be on who the thirteen tribes of Greater Israel are today, captivity and deliverance will still happen! Why? Even if you discount the people, The Mighty One of Israel is concerned over Jerusalem and its falling will trigger the end-time scenario with all of its prophesied death and destruction.
However, if you are serving our loving SOVEREIGN with all of your heart and might, you will be there for the restoration of all things and the Kingdom of ETERNAL on earth. It will begin with all of those living the Hebrew Faith of Abraham and those Questing for the Ancient of Days standing from their graves. Both groups will then have spirit bodies. 8 Oh, what a glorious time that will be.
Since the one SOVEREIGN has only one set of Scripture, the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament, Tanakh), He has only one Way for us to live. We must trust His promised protection and live His Way. Compare your daily activities against what the Commandments, Statutes, and Judgments state. Are they the same? If not, then “right now” is the time to change.
If you do compare and change and obey ETERNAL’s words, then He will bring you and the rest of the Righteous Remnant safely through the time of Jacob’s Trouble. Then you will experience The Wonderful World of Tomorrow that follows the upcoming holocaust during the time of Jacob’s Trouble.
In addition, we must tell our friends, family, and those we know that we are part of the Lost Ten Tribes of Israel. We must also warn them of the coming danger of the Time of Jacob’s Trouble and give them the good news of The Wonderful World Of Tomorrow. Oh Israel, we must turn from worshiping the B-als on Sunday morning and search for the heart of our loving CREATOR we will find it.
How can you know what we have said in our literature and tapes is true? To prove it one way or the other, you must study to find the answers in the Hebrew Scriptures. Wake Up America! Wake Up Britain! Wake Up Judah! The Tribes of Israel, both Houses of MUST Wake Up! It is much later than you think! Even now the ancient land of Judea is flirting with total disaster.
Begin now to obey our SOVEREIGN and His written word — not the word of some man no matter how much you esteem him. This is for both you and your family. In addition, no man dead or alive can save us. However, repentance to the Great Mighty One, the ETERNAL SOVEREIGN, is the only action that will save us (Isaiah 43:25-26; Psalm 51:4). We must study to know our SOVEREIGN and His Way; we must “Quest for the Ancient of Days.” Let us help you with your Quest. Write us or stop by our website at and see for yourself. We will leave the light on for you. Write for our magazine “The Hope of Israel.”
You have been exposed to this work. The question of what you will do about it has already been asked. The answer is already in your heart known only to you and the Mighty One of Israel. He alone is your judge.
- Notes from New Scofield Reference Edition, introduction notes for Ezekiel
- “A word not in the Scriptures but use by later Jews and ‘Christians’ to express the visible Divine Presence, especially when resting between the Cherubim over the mercy seat. Aramaic and Late Hebrew “Shekiniah” or residence of ‘God’. Unger’s Dictionary, p 1008.
- Scofield’s note for verse (9:3)
- Scofield’s note for verse (11:23)
- Scofield’s note for verse 3:
“Obviously it was not Ezekiel who came to destroy the city of Jerusalem for her sins, but ETERNAL Himself. On the basis of the requirements of the context, the reading in some six manuscripts, the version of Theodotion and that of the Vulgate, the best reading is “when I came to destroy the city.” A possible rendering, and perhaps preferable, would be to read the final letter of the disputed word as a well-known abbreviation for “LORD,” thus giving us the reading “when ETERNAL came to destroy the city.”
This is an example of Midnight Monk activity, see our article, “Why Satan Not Win?”
- Strong’s H7931 “shakan” (shaw-kan’) a prim. root through the idea of lodging; to reside or permanently stay.
- See our article “When a Man Dies, Will He Live Again?”
The Abrahamic (Hebrew) Faith (Part I)
by Charles J. Voss
First of all, The Old testament is The Consecrated Hebrew Scriptures
T he Designer of the universe must have an overall plan for ALL of the inhabitants of the earth. This is a search for that plan. The stars in the sky are proof of an overall power in the universe that somehow put them all in place and controls all that there is. Our goal is to search out and find what the CREATOR’s will is for all of His creation.
Our Quest will focus on the ancient writings of the Hebrew people. These writings were inspired by our CREATOR. They were chosen because there are no mediating documents that our CREATOR has authorized. His Scriptures stand alone as the only authority of His will. There are NO religious factions that are based strictly on His Scripture alone. All religions factions1 are based on other writings. We will discover that the Abrahamic Faith is based upon the Hebrew Scriptures alone. In our study, we will look at and compare the Hebrew Faith with religions which are governed by their own mediating writings. We will be specifically looking at the religion of Judaism, the religion of Christianity, and the religion of Islam.
It is true that the religion of Judaism claims to be based on these ancient writings, but they have other books that are just as, or even more, consecrated to them. In our Quest we must seek out only the inspired writings by the CREATOR Himself that stand alone and has a plan for ALL of mankind. The Hebrew Scriptures are the only writings that fit this requirement.
What does the word “Hebrew” mean? The answer to that question is straight out of the Hebrew Scriptures (known as the Old Testament):
Jonah 1:7-9 (KJV) And they [sailors] said to one another, “Come, let us cast lots, that we may know for whose cause this trouble has come upon us.” So they cast lots, and the lot fell on Jonah. Then they said to him, “Please tell us! For whose cause is this trouble upon us? What is your occupation? And where do you come from? What is your country? And of what people are you?” So, he [Jonah] said to them, “I am a Hebrew; and I fear ETERNAL, the CREATOR of heaven, who made the sea and the dry land.”
The Hebrew Scribes translated the Paleo Hebrew into modern Hebrew as “YHWH” which Dr. James Moffatt translates as ETERNAL in his English translation of the Scriptures. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible also gives ETERNAL as a meaning of “YHWH,” #H3060. Like Dr. Moffatt, I use the meaning ETERNAL for because this calls immediate attention to the actual name rather than a title or description for the CREATOR.
Jonah said, “I am a Hebrew; and I fear ETERNAL (ONE, ONE single Being) the CREATOR of the heavens who made the seas and the dry land.” Notice that Jonas did not say that he was an Israelite or a Jew. He describes himself as a Hebrew Since he is certainly not a Gentile, and since Hebrew’s are set apart, he placed himself on the other side of a moral divide with the Hebrews on one side and everyone else on the other side.
Jonah’s answer to the question is the subject for today. It is important that we understand what our CREATOR would have us do. Although we say that we believe in the ONE true CREATOR, we certainly need to know that He has only ONE set of Scriptures. Since we emphatically say that we only believe in The Hebrew Scriptures, we must make sure that we do not identify with any of the other books that could be used to override the Hebrew Scripture. Having made that point clear, there is still a lot that we need to do in order to live by the writings of The Hebrew Scriptures. First, we will look at what it means to be a Hebrew.
Genesis 14:12-13. They [the kings that had gone to war against Sodom] also took Lot, Abram’s brother’s son who dwelt in Sodom, and his goods, and departed. Then one who had escaped came and told Abram the Hebrew…
Genesis 14:13 is the first time the word “Hebrew” is used in the Scriptures. We are focusing on the faith that Abram lived by – the Faith of Abraham the Hebrew. What is that faith? Notice immediately that one of the first times Abram is mentioned in Scripture, he is called a Hebrew. The story flow is that CREATOR told Abram to leave the country and he did so without question.
Genesis 12:4-5. …Abram departed as ETERNAL had spoken to him, and Lot went with him. And Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran. Then Abram took Sarai his wife and Lot his brother’s son, and all their possessions that they had gathered, and the people whom they had acquired in Haran, and they departed to go to the land of Canaan. So they came to the land of Canaan.
Notice that when Abram was told to do something that he did it immediately. Abram obeyed the CREATOR. Why would Abram obey? What is it about the CREATOR that could cause Abram to have this kind of faith to obey ALL the things the CREATOR told him to do? Remember at this time that Abram did not know what he was getting into. He had no idea where he was going or what the future held. All he knew was that he was going to a place in which CREATOR would show him. Abram was tested to see if he was a man who would obey his Creator. Again, Abram was tested. Notice:
Genesis 22:1-5. Now it came to pass after these things that SOVEREIGN tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then He said, “Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.” So Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son; and he split the wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which SOVEREIGN had told him. Then on the third day Abraham lifted his eyes and saw the place afar off. And Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey; the lad and I will go yonder and worship, and we will come back to you.”
Notice Abram said “we” which is plural. WE will come back to you. To quote that verse from the King James Version:
Genesis 22:5. And Abram said to the young men, abide here with the ass and I and the lad will go yonder and worship and come again to you.
Abram was confident that he would come back with his son, Isaac. Thus, we see that Abram obeyed because he knew he could trust what ETERNAL told him. But, what had the ETERNAL told him that made him think he would be able to come back to the men with his son? Notice:
Genesis 12:1-3. Now ETERNAL had said to Abram: “Get you out of this country and from your family and from your father’s house to a land that I will show you. I will make you a great nation. I will bless you and make your name great and you shall be a blessing. I will bless those that bless you and curse those that curse you. And in you, all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”
What was the promise that ETERNAL made to Abram? ETERNAL promised Abram that from his descendents would be a great nation. According to ETERNAL, Isaac was the son from which this promised nation would come. Consequently, Abraham trusted ETERNAL to do just what He said He would do even if it meant that ETERNAL would have to bring Isaac back to life.
Genesis 12:4. So Abram departed as ETERNAL had spoken to him, and Lot went with him. And Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran.
ETERNAL had promised Abraham that many descendents would come from him, so Abraham was not worried. Now back to Genesis.
Genesis 22:6-8. So, Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac5 his son. And he took the fire in his hand and a knife and the two of them went together. But Isaac spoke to Abraham his father and said “My father.” And he said, “Here I am, my son.” Then he said, “Look the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?” And Abraham said, “My son, [the] CREATOR will provide for Himself the lamb for the burnt offering.” So the two of them went on together.
Again, Abraham is showing why he obeyed. He obeyed because he trusted his SOVEREIGN. You will see that has even a deeper meaning. Down to verse nine.
Genesis 22:9-12. Then they came to the place which ETERNAL had told him; and Abraham built there an altar and placed the wood in order and bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar upon the wood. And Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son. [In other words, he had drawn back and was coming down with the knife.] But the angel of ETERNAL called to him from heaven and said “Abraham! Abraham!” So, he [Abraham] said “Here I am.” And He [ETERNAL] said “Do not lay your hand on the lad or do anything to him, because now I know that you fear your CREATOR since you have not withheld your son, your only son from Him.”
The Abrahamic (Hebrew) Faith (Part II)
Abraham proved that he trusted our SOVEREIGN. ETERNAL then knew6 that Abraham was obedient and that He could trust Abraham. This is the faith of Abraham – the Abrahamic faith, or the Hebrew faith. It is my belief that there is just a single faith and that faith is based solely on The Hebrew Scriptures. When I say The Consecrated Scriptures or The Hebrew Scriptures, I am referring to what the world commonly refers to as the Old Testament. I claim that this one faith was indeed the faith of all the ancients from Seth to Noah to Shem to Abraham and then to Moses. It was and still is the ONE AND ONLY true faith of mankind. This faith is neither Christian nor Jewish nor Islamic in any modern sense of those terms. All religions are man made and are based partly on “the True Faith” but mostly from their own mediating documents. All religions are a deviation from the truth and all religions use their mediating documents as their main authority.
So, what is the religion of Abraham? Abraham DID NOT HAVE a religion. Was Abraham a Jew? Was Abraham a Christian? Was Abraham an Islamic? NO!!! Abraham lived by faith – the faith that the CREATOR Himself instructed Abraham to live by. How would you label Abram’s faith? In addition, what about Enoch, Noah, Shem, Moses, David, or any of the Hebrew Prophets? These men loved their SOVEREIGN and obeyed Him. They did not add to His Instructions (Commandments) nor did they take away from them. They simply obeyed.
The Muslims have their bible, the Koran, which “they say” supersedes and overrides The Hebrew Scriptures. The Christians have their bible, the New Testament, which “they say” supersedes and overrides The Hebrew Scriptures. The Jews have their books, the Mishna and Talmud, which “they say” supersede and override The Hebrew Scriptures. The Mormons have their bible, the Book of Mormon, which “they say” supersedes and overrides everything and everybody.
In Scripture, our forefathers are called Hebrews or Israelites. For many years now the Jewish people refer to the forefathers as Jews but that is not correct. According to our CREATOR’s words, they are Hebrews or Israelites. The terms Israelites or Hebrews also include the Jewish people; but the Jews only make up 1/13th of all of the Israelites. The Jews are only one tribe out of thirteen tribes.
Here are two very important questions that we can look at here. Please think about them. What religion or faith did our forefathers practice? Is that religion or faith around today? Those are excellent questions because there are not many who practice what The Hebrew Scriptures state. This matter of labeling a religion is confusing. Most of us have worn such labels at one time or another. Many of us have changed from one religion to another in the course of our Quest for truth. I believe a growing number of people would like to resist such tags, labels, and somehow get back to the core Scriptural faith. An increasing number of believers desire to be nondenominational — free from the fetters of religious organizations and creeds.
At this time, I am taking the liberty of setting out the broad outlines of the single Scriptural faith. I claim that this one faith was indeed the faith of all the ancients from Enoch to Abraham and later to Moses It always was and still is the one true faith of mankind. The faith is neither Christian nor Jewish nor any other religion and it is absolutely nondenominational. Only one organization that I am aware of, The United Hebrew Congregations, represents that faith. Thus, there is a lot that we must still learn and understand. As far as I know, we are the only organization that even claims to use only The Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament) and to serve only ONE SOVEREIGN. In saying that, I am not saying that we have fully arrived where the CREATOR wants us to be because many of us have just come into this knowledge and it takes time to change belief patterns and habit patterns and all humans sin against our CREATOR.
And as far as I know, we are the only group that proclaims that The Hebrew Scriptures and them alone are the sole written Words of ETERNAL our CREATOR and SOVEREIGN. We must live by these words. We have used the three main Western religions like examples, the ones that we have just mentioned, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam because all three claim to go back to this one man Abraham as their founding father: the Friend of ETERNAL!
What is the basis of Abraham’s faith? We need to know this because Abraham is uniquely called the friend of ETERNAL in Isaiah.
Isaiah 41:8. “But you, Israel, are My servant Jacob whom I have chosen, the descendants of Abraham My friend.”
ETERNAL our SOVEREIGN, calls Abraham His friend. The English word translated ‘friend’ comes from the Hebrew word ‘ohad‘ which comes from the verbal root ‘ahed’ number #H157 and means “to love or to have affection for.” It is a strong and tender word of affection and devotion and is even used for a passionate lover. The simple but deeply meaningful description ‘friend’ captures the essence of what I want us to come to understand. What would it mean to live by the faith of Abraham? It would mean to be the friend of the ETERNAL and for Him to say of us that we are His friends.
The ‘Abrahamic Faith’ or ‘Hebrew Faith’ is the core Scriptural faith and it is well represented by Abraham. It centers on three fundamental concepts. Simply put, the first one is to know the one true CREATOR or The Almighty. The second one is to follow the way of the CREATOR. Additionally, the third one is to participate in the universal plan of the CREATOR for mankind.
These concepts can be stated just that simply but each one involves profound areas of Scriptural revelation. Millions of Jews, Christians, and Muslims claim to represent the truth in these three vital areas. Yet, they are hopelessly divided as to an understanding of who the CREATOR is and how one might have an intimate relationship with Him much less understand His way for mankind and the ultimate purpose or plan of our SOVEREIGN in history.
I claim the Scriptural revelation can be understood plainly. It carries a unifying message in each of these areas: knowing our SOVEREIGN is ONE, the way of our SOVEREIGN, and the plan of our SOVEREIGN. This Abrahamic faith is just that clear. It involves a singular faith that was shared by all the ancients. In other words, this one true faith for all mankind has not changed over the ages, yet, it is surprisingly different from what most people assume the Scriptures say. You do not hear this message from the pulpits in this land. This understanding has become almost wholly lost or even rejected by most of those who claim to follow Scriptural revelations. It is seemingly understood and lived by only a few. Still, if we are to believe the Prophets, this Abrahamic faith is the definite wave of the future. The Prophets foretell of a time when this specific wave will fill the earth as the waters cover the sea.
Sumerians: Who Were They
The Sudden Civilization? (I)
by Walter Baucum
A question that has fascinated archaeologists and historians for centuries is just who were the Sumerians, the “sudden civilization” that appeared in full swing in Mesopotamia over 4,000 years ago?
The Almighty repeated to Isaac an unconditional promise He had made with Abraham:
Gen. 26: 3-5, 24 (TKN) Reside in this land, and I will be with you and bless you; I will assign all these lands to you and to your heirs, fulfilling the oath that I swore to your father Abraham. I will make your heirs as numerous as the stars of heaven, and assign to your heirs all these lands, so that all the nations of the earth shall bless themselves by your heirs—inasmuch as Abraham obeyed Me and kept My charge: My Commandments, My Laws, and My Teachings… That night YHWH appeared to him and said, ‘I am YHWH of your father Abraham. Fear not, for I am with you, and I will bless you and increase your offspring for the sake of My servant Abraham.’”
Isaac’s son Jacob [Israel] inherited this promise. It is our contention that the United States, the British Commonwealth countries, Western Europe, and Scandinavia are the Israelite Tribes and therefore the inheritors of this promise to our forefathers. But who were the Sumerians, and what do they have to do with us today?
Israel, Isaac, and Abraham can be traced back to Shem, one of the three sons of Noah. Shem’s lineage inherited the responsibility of keeping intact the knowledge and true worship of the CREATOR.
Shem was the great-grandfather of Eber (Gen. 10:21). The word Hebrew is a derivative of the word Eber (Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance numbers H5680, H5677, and H5674). Shem was born 98 years before the Flood of Noah’s time and lived 502 years after it. He likely began his kingdom before the Deluge, continuing it afterwards with his own name Shem, or Sem. The “r” in Sumer was not pronounced in the Hebrew, nor was the “h.” It was from his name that we know it today as the Sumerian civilization. See also Genesis 11:10-30.
It was an advanced civilization undoubtedly because of their close contact with our CREATOR and their being taught by Him through righteous Noah. This “instant civilization” replaced the earlier [some likely having started immediately after the Flood] primitive peoples called Hassuna, Samarra, Halafian, and ‘Ubaid in the Mesopotamian delta area. The Sumerian civilization was in full swing by 2900 BCE and depended heavily on trade with areas outside Mesopotamia. It flourished until approximately 2000 BCE, at which time it was eclipsed by Babylonian power.
“The Sumerians not only developed a civilization, but they also were the first people in human history to record their literature and beliefs in writing. They set down age-old legends of great floods and of warring gods that were to survive through the millennia to become part of the ‘Old Testament’ and part of the cultural heritage of Western Civilization.”
The Advanced Civilization
Some amazing firsts of the Sumerians as interpreted and written by Zecharia Sitchin are given in brief by Lloyd Pye. Some also were quoted from noted Sumerologist Samuel Kramer’s seminal work, From the Tablets of Sumer.
They include the first schools, bicameral congress, historians, pharmacopoeia, “farmer’s almanac,” cosmogony and cosmology, proverbs and sayings, literary debates, library catalogues, law codes and social reforms, medicine, agriculture, and search for world peace and harmony.
The schools taught language and writing, as well as the sciences of the day—botany, zoology, geography, mathematics, and theology. Literary works were studied and copied, and new ones were composed. The language itself was a marvel, with its “precise grammar and rich vocabulary.” Cuneiform, the world’s first writing, ultimately evolved into a very simple and efficient technique.
We sometimes do not give the ancients credit for their vast knowledge. 1 Kings 4:30-34 says that King Solomon knew these sciences well, probably passed down to him through Shem’s lineage.
Sumerian scribes covered a remarkable range of topics, including “cosmological tales, epic poems, histories of kings, temple records, commercial contracts, marriage and divorce records, astronomical tables, astrological forecasts, mathematical formulas, geographic lists, grammar and vocabulary school texts.”
These people also founded the first true cities, each having 10,000 to 50,000 inhabitants. When a city became too large to be easily manageable, part of the population left to create a new city that could grow without constraint. This indicated definite urban planning, which even our modern city planners fail to do sometimes. Cities were laid out in grids, with streets easing congestion between houses and buildings, and facilitating movement and commerce. Post-Sumerian cultures tended to sprawl haphazardly around a village-sized center. Sumerian city centers were dominated by magnificent high-rise palaces and temples [ziggurats], which were built to exact specifications outlined in detailed architectural plans. City perimeters were walled for defense. Water was supplied by brilliant canal and aqueduct systems, and they had equally clever drainage and sewage disposal.
They began reinforcing clay bricks with chopped reeds and straw, to which they added the kiln furnace to fire those bricks, making them strong enough and durable enough to construct their high-rises and temples (some over 100 feet tall), as well as to pave streets. These kilns also forged the first durable pottery, such as cups, bowls, plates, urns, storage vessels, etc. This led directly to the first age of metals, the Bronze Age, because it allowed intense but controllable temperatures to be contained in furnaces without contamination from dust or ashes. Metallurgy in turn led to the first money (coins) and banking.
Concerning metals, Dr. Wilhelm Konig, an Austrian archaeologist employed by the Iraq Museum, unearthed in 1936 a 2000-year-old vase, six inches high, which contained inside it a copper cylinder set in pitch, and inside that an iron rod secured with an asphalt plug. It resembled others in the Berlin Museum, some larger with a repetition of the cylinder settings. It occurred to some, including Dr. Konig, that these might be dry cell batteries, which, understandably, were no longer in working condition after several thousand years. However, when they were exactly reconstructed and provided with a new electrolyte, they worked. This ancient use of electricity might of course prove only that electric power was used for electroplating metals with gold and silver, as is still done in the bazaars of the Middle East. It is unclear if this was a Sumerian invention, but electroplating of metals was found to be an ancient Israelite skill also.
Because no ores were there except naphtha, which was asphalts and bitumens that seeped to the surface, Sumerians had to locate and retrieve mineral ores from wherever they existed to supply their furnaces. This led them to develop the first extensive international trade routes by using naphtha as their principle medium of exchange. They used it also for road surfacing, waterproofing, caulking, cementing, painting, and molding. This extensive use of petroleum products led to the development of advanced chemistry needed to create a wide range of paints and pigments, pottery glazes, and the artificial production of semiprecious stones like lapis lazuli.
There is evidence that as these Sumerians spread out to different parts of the world, perhaps even to every continent on earth, they mapped it and used what today we call the zodiac as a direction finder. The first so-called zodiacs were direction maps that radiated out from Sumer and which used the star configurations as compass points.
Some Other Firsts of the Sumerians
What else did these Sumerians do? Pye continues:
“They produced poetry, songs, and dances, through which, the Greek scholar Philo claimed, they sought to gain ‘worldwide harmony and unison.’
“Sumerians also created an efficient system of mathematics based on the number 60 (called sexagesimal). It enabled them easily to divide into tiny fractions and to multiply with equal ease into the millions and to calculate roots and raise numbers by any power. The 60-second minute and 60-minute hour are two vestiges remaining from the original system. So are the 360-degree circle, the 12-inch foot, and the dozen.” [These measurements are still used by the U.S. and Great Britain countries, whose citizens are, we contend, some of the progeny of the Sumerians through Israel and Abraham (Flavius Josephus says that Abram taught the Egyptians mathematics and engineering).]
“Closely related to their mathematics was their geometry, which permitted their engineers to survey, level, and construct highly intricate and efficient irrigation systems for their widespread agriculture. That geometry also contributed to their astonishingly complete astronomy.
“The Sumerians developed a wide array of musical instruments—lutes, harps, flutes, pipes—and a playing system much like the heptatonic-diatonic scale used today.”
Some astronomical firsts of the Sumerians are amazing. Their very accurate calendars were fashioned around the mind-boggling timeframe of 25,920 years, the “Great Year” based on a sophisticated celestial phenomenon known as precession [the time Earth’s polar axis needs to circle the sky and point again at the same North Star]. They predicted sun risings and settings that were accurate enough to predict eclipses. Necessary to predict eclipses was knowledge of the shapes, movements, and relationships between the earth, moon, and sun. They accomplished this by using the same heliacal system we use today, by measuring the rising and setting of the stars and planets in our skies relative to the sun.
They kept accurate ephemerides, tables that predicted future positions of celestial bodies. “Those ephemerides were not based on observations, which were impossible with the naked eye, but on mathematical formulas governed by rules handed down from some as yet undetermined source.” They also understood the celestial phenomenon known as retrograde, the erratic motion of the other planets relative to Earth caused by Earth’s faster or slower orbital speed around the sun. It required an extremely long period—several centuries—to grasp the idea of retrograde and successfully track it.
They did their astronomical tracking using a complex method of spherical geometry, which postulated a round earth with an equator and poles. They knew Earth and the other planets moved around the sun in a flat plane of an ecliptic, which over the course of a year resulted in gradual north-south shifts of sunrises and sunsets along Earth’s horizon, producing equinoxes and solstices. These sophisticated concepts are utilized by modern astronomers in the same manner.
They also lend credence to Scripture that the knowledge of the CREATOR of the solar system, indeed, the entire universe, was passed down through Noah and Shem and their progeny. Berlitz mentions something of interest.
“A number of star features that could not be seen without the use of a telescope were given the same names in different languages in both the Old and New Worlds. Such was the Scorpion, a star cluster containing a comet, which reminded both the (Sumero-) Babylonians and the Maya of Central America of a scorpion and was called by that name by both races. Greek astronomers adopted the observation of the Babylonians that Uranus regularly covered its moons, an occurrence also unable to be seen by the naked eye, and converted it to a legend that the god Uranus had the habit of alternately eating and later disgorging his children.