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It is written:
1 Chronicles 5:25-26-And they were unfaithful to the God of their fathers, and played the harlot after the gods of the peoples of the land, whom God had destroyed before them. 26 So the God of Israel stirred up the spirit of Pul king of Assyria, that is, Tiglath-Pileser king of Assyria. He carried the Reubenites, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh into captivity. He took them to Halah, Habor, Hara, and the river of Gozan to this day.
In 722 B.C., the nation of Assyria captured the northern tribes of Israel and enslaved them. They were removed from their land and taken to another place which the Bible describes as “Halah, Habor, Hara, and the river of Gozan.”
Through the years, there has been much speculation about what happened to these ten tribes of Hebrews. Some archaeological evidence suggests that some were brought here to America long before the time of Christ.
Recently, a researcher named Joseph Eidelberg wrote a volume in which he suggested that the Japanese are the descendants of some of these lost Ten Tribes. At one point in his book, he provides some fascinating historical information regarding the lost ten tribes. He writes:
“But the glory of the Hebrew empire did not last long. After Solomons death, just when his son, Rehoboam, ascended the throne, the ten tribes of Israel seceded from the Hebrew commonwealth and formed their own kingdom. And on the fifteenth day of the eighth month, the new kingdom declared its independence. Thus, in 931 B.C.E. there were two Hebrew kingdoms: the kingdom of Judah, with its capital in Jerusalem, and the kingdom of Israel, with its capital in Shechem. The kingdom of Israel, whose capital later became the city of Samaria, existed for a little more than two hundred years. Then, in 721 B.C.E., “the king of Assyria took Samaria, and carried Israel away into Assyria, and placed them in Halah and in Habor by the river of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes.” The fate of the kingdom of Israel was sealed. Exiled from their homeland, and banished to faraway lands, the people of Samaria mysteriously vanished somewhere in the East, and in the course of time became known as the “Ten Lost Tribes of Israel.” Sargon 11 (721-705 B.C.E.), the Assyrian king who was responsible for the exile of the people of Samaria, relates the story as follows: I Sargon, the Great King, the Mighty King who crushed countries like earthen pots, who subdued cities from the Valley of Egypt; the Wide Westland, the land of the Hittites, and the land of the distant Medes where the sun is rising.. .at the beginning of my government I besieged and conquered the city of Samaria; the 27,290 inhabitants who were living in it I led into captivity, and people from all the countries whom my hands had made prisoners I caused to dwell there5. Sargon did not specify in his annals to which countries he had exiled the people of Samaria, and it is most unlikely that he told the people of Judah-who had not been deported-the destination of the exiles. How then did the compilers of the Bible know that the people of Samaria had been placed “in Halah and in Habor… and in the cities of the Medes,” as the Book of Kings tells us? And how was it established that the Ten Tribes of Israel-identical with the people of Samaria-had disappeared? The truth is that nothing has ever been established about the “loss” of the Ten Tribes. According to popular conjecture, after their banishment to the distant lands, “the people of the northern kingdom (Samaria) and their kings with them disappeared, were absorbed into the population of these foreign lands, and never emerged again in history.” 6 But this is just a conjecture, for no evidence as to either the absorption of the Ten Tribes into the populations of the foreign lands, or to the time that they became lost, has ever been presented. Moreover, a close examination of the Bible, and other ancient writings, reveals that the Ten Tribes of Israel continued to maintain their national unity for more than eight hundred years after the exile! How, if so, did they become “lost?” According to the Book of Chronicles, 7 “the God of Israel stirred up the spirit of Pul King of Assyria, and the spirit of Tilgath-Pilneser King of Assyria, and he carried them away, even the Reubenites, and the Gadites (two Hebrew tribes), and the half tribe of Manasseh, and brought them unto Halah, and Habor, and Hara, and the river Gozan, unto this day” And since the Book of Chronicles is believed to have been written in about 400 B.C.E., 8 the statement “unto this day” indicates that 320 years after the destruction of the kingdom of Samaria, some of the exiled Hebrew tribes who lived in the region of “Halah, and Habor, and Hara and the river of Gozan,” still maintained their tribal structure. But this was not the last time that ancient writers and historians brought information about the existence of the ten tribes of Israel. At the end of the first century of our era-more than eight hundred years after the exile of the people of Samaria-the Hebrew historian Josephus Flavius wrote in his book Antiquities of the Jews that “the ten tribes are beyond Euphrates until now, and are an immense multitude, and not to be estimated by numbers.” 9 Josephus Flavius does not tell us the exact location of the place which he calls “beyond Euphrates;” another book, however, known as Esdras n, which was also written at the end of the first century of our era, gives us a closer indication as to the whereabouts of the Ten Tribes. Although Esdras n is known mainly as a book of visions and revelations, it contains, nevertheless, important historical information. Thus, for example, when God explains to Ezra one of His visions, He says: Then you saw (a man) collecting a different company, a peaceful one. They are the ten tribes which were taken off into exile in the time of King Hoshea, whom Shalmaneser king of Assyria took prisoner. He deported them beyond the River and they were taken away into a strange country. But then they resolved to leave the country populated by Gentiles and go to a distant land never yet inhabited by man, and there at last to be obedient to their laws, which in their own country they had failed to keep. As they passed through the narrow passages of the Euphrates, the most High performed miracles for them, stopping up the channels of the river until they had crossed over. Their journey through that region, which is called Arzareth, was long, and took a year and a half. They have lived there ever since, until this final age. Now they are on their way back, and once more the Most High will stop the channels of the river to let them cross (n Esdras, 13: 39-47). 10 This passage gives us a more or less clear indication of both the direction in which the Ten Tribes traveled, and the distance they had to traverse on their journey from Assyria to the land “never yet inhabited by man.” First, about the direction. According to the author of Esdras n, the Ten Tribes journeyed through a region called Arzareth, which many scholars believe to be a corruption of the two Hebrew words “arets-aheret,” simply meaning “another land.” However, this conjecture does not indicate anything, for it is known that exiled Hebrews were exiled to “another land.” On the other hand, it is quite possible that Arzareth is a corruption of the name Hazarajat, a mountainous area in central Afghanistan, not far from Habor and the river of Gozan, which, according to the Bible, were inhabited by the Ten Tribes of Israel. The river of Gozan might well be the Ghazni, which flows through the town of Ghazni, situated about 120 kilometers southwest of Kabul; and Habor (pronounced Khabor) is the Khyber area, about two hundred kilometers east of Kabul. That Afghanistan was inhabited by Hebrew tribes in the remote past can be corroborated, perhaps, by the fact that even today there are several Afghan tribes who claim to be the descendants of the Hebrews who were exiled by the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar in 586 B.C.E. H.W. Bellew, in his book Journal of a Political Mission to Afghanistan in 1857, says that the Afghans, as well as the Pathan tribes, style themselves Bani-Israil, meaning “Children of Israel,” and trace their descent in a direct line from Saul the Benjamite, king of Israel. 11 And although they can adduce no authentic evidence in support of their claim, their own books, describing their origin and early history, lay such stress on their wars with the biblical Philistines and Amalekites, and present such minute details of the Ark of the Covenant, that only descendants of Hebrews, well acquainted with the Bible, could set forth. 12 It may be interesting to point out here that most of the Afghan tribes are Moslems today. And it is quite possible that they began styling themselves “Afghans” after adopting Islam: for “afkhan,” in Aramaic means “one who has changed (religion).” Having found some descendants of Hebrew tribes in Afghanistan, it should be relatively easy for us to identify the “distant land never yet inhabited by man,” to which, according to Esdras 11, the Ten Tribes had to journey one and a half years. Using the biblical scale, which says that it took a group of Hebrews four months to travel from Babylon to Jerusalem, 13 a journey of one and a half years east, at about the same pace, should have brought the Ten Tribes to the Issyk-kul basin of ancient Halah (pronounced Khalakh). And indeed, Halah together with Habor and Gozan, is mentioned in the Bible as being the abode of the exiled Hebrew tribes. 14 Judging by the information we do have, the Ten Tribes must have lived in the area of Halah for about eight hundred years. 15 There, through many centuries of intermarriage with such Mongoloid tribes as Khalkhas, 16 Uighurs, Uzbeks and Turkmen, who lived in their vicinity, they gradually acquired Mongolian features. Yet in spite of their becoming externally “Mongolian” looking, they seem to have continued to preserve their national identity and to send from time to time greetings to their ancient homeland. Communication by descendants of the exiled Ten Tribes with their ancient kingdom, though not very frequent, must have been maintained as long as they dwelt in the regions of Halah and Habor. There, being actually in control of the caravan route from China to the Mediterranean, known as the Silk Road, they could easily exchange information with their brethren in Judah.” (Joseph Eidelberg, The Biblical Hebrew Origin of the Japanese People (LOST TRIBES Book 2), 35-39 (Kindle Edition); Lynbrook, NY; Gefen Books)
Eidelberg makes an interesting case for Hebrew origins to the people of Japan. At the very least, his work demonstrates yet again the historical accuracy of the Bible.
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit, be with you all. Amen.