The Exile of the Ten Tribes
The Lost Ten Tribes are now to be found amongst Western Peoples. Originally they came from Israel. They had split apart from the Jews of Judah and formed their own Kingdom. This article describes how they were taken away from the Land of Israel by Assyrian forces.

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The Exile of the Ten Tribes.avi

Duration: 9.44 minutes

The Ten Tribes of Israel divided themselves off from the Jews (and Judah) and were exiled. Eventually they moved to the west. Yair Davidiy from the Brit-Am Ten Tribes Movement describes the Exile of the Ten Tribes.

To hear a 9 minute .mp3 Talk on the subject SCROLL DOWN/

In our last episode we saw how the 12 tribes of Israel split into two separate kingdoms. They are referred to in the Bible as the Kingdom of Israel and the Kingdom of Judah.    The northern kingdom is usually referred to in the Bible as "Israel", "Samaria", or "Ephraim". The southern entity is called "Judah", "Zion", or "Jerusalem". Sometimes other names are used. Each name has its own particular significance.
                All of the Tribes of Israel had been accustomed to ascend three times a year to Jerusalem and there to offer sacrifice in the Temple. After the secession King Jeroboam of northern Israel feared that continued religious attachment to Jerusalem would eventually lead to the people demanding political re unification with the south:
1-Kings 12: 26 And Jeroboam said in his heart, Now the kingdom may return to the house of David: 27 If these people go up to offer sacrifices in the house of the LORD at Jerusalem, then the heart of this people will turn back to their lord, Rehoboam king of Judah, and they will kill me and go back to Rehoboam king of Judah.
28 Therefore the king asked advice, made two calves of gold, and said to the people, It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem. Here are your gods, O Israel, which brought you up from the land of Egypt!  And he set up one in Bethel, and the other he put in Dan. (1-Kings 12:28-29).
                King Jeroboam had introduced new religious practices as a result of which it was prophesied in his time:
  "For The LORD shall smite Israel, as a reed is shaken in the water, and he shall root up Israel out of this good land, which he gave to their fathers, and shall scatter them beyond the river, because they have made their sacred poles, provoking The LORD.
                "And he shall give Israel up because of the sins of Jeroboam who did sin, and who made Israel to sin. (1-Kings 14;15-16).  

                As soon as the Tribes of Israel split in two there occurred an immediate decline in their position. The Tribe of Menasseh had two halves, one half in lands west of the Jordan River, and the other half in the area east of it. This second half was dominated by the clans of Machir and his son Gilead.
                Altogether, there were two and a half tribes east of the Jordan River. These were Reuben, Gad, and the half tribe of Menasseh. In addition segments of some of the other tribes were also to be found in this region. At that time there were forests in the land, and there was more greenery, more precipitation, the climate was colder and water was more plentiful. The country east of the Jordan was highly productive agriculturally and provided plentiful pasture and mineral deposits.
                The Hebrews' enjoyment of their patrimony was to be curtailed due to war with Assyria. The lands of Israel were to be conquered and all of the people exiled. The Tribes east of the Jordan were among the first to be taken away.                                    
                "And the God of Israel stirred up the spirit of Pul king of Assyria and the spirit of Tiglath pileser king of Assyria, and he carried them away, even the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the half tribe of Menasseh , and brought them unto Halah, and Habor, and Hara, and to the river Gozan, unto this day.
(1-Chronicles  5;25 26).

Later the Tribes in the Northern Galilee were also exiled:
                In the days of Pekah king of Israel, Tiglath-Pileser came and took Ijon, Abel Beth Maachah, Janoah, Kedesh, Hazor, Gilead, and Galilee all the land of Nephtali; and he carried them captive to Assyria. (2-Kings 15;29). How many Israelites were exiled has been debated but the fact is that they all went, the northern Israelite Kingdom along with its inhabitant  disappeared from the Israelite area.
                The exile of all Israel from the northern Galilee is recorded in an inscription of Tiglathpileser who boasts of exiling all of "Bit Khumria" except for a small remnant which he left around the city of Samaria6 which city was then the capital and had been built by King Omri. "Bit Khumria" was the name which the Assyrians gave to northern Israel presumably in remembrance of King Omri ("Khumri" in Assyrian) whose son Achab had once fought and defeated the Assyrian forces. The Assyrian ruler Tiglathpileser (745-727) was followed by Shalmaneser (727-722) and he by Sargon (722-705) and then came Senacherib ( 705-681). All of these kings participated in the exile and resettlement of Israelites. After the eastern Tribes and the northern ones had all been exiled, there remained only a rump state centred around the city of Samaria in the south and these too were to be exiled.
"Then the  king of Assyria came up throughout all the land, and went up to Samaria, and besieged it three years.
                 "In the ninth year of Hoshea, the king of Assyria took Samaria, and carried Israel away into Assyria, and placed them in Halah, and in Habor, by the city of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes" (2-Kings 17;7-8).                     
                An Assyrian inscription recalls the taking of Samaria and the exile of its inhabitants. This inscription says that the king of Assyria took to himself more than 27,000 people and the rest he removed to Assyria. The inscription may be understood to mean NOT (as is commonly claimed) that Sargon took only 27,000 plus people from Samaria into captivity BUT rather that Sargon took ca. 27,000 people for his own (military) purposes and the remainder of the people he settled in Assyria.
                                The people of Samaria were besieged and exiled after all the rest of their brethren had already been taken away en masse.
                Following the exile of Samaria, the Bible says that, "there was none left but the tribe of Judah only" (2-Kings 17;18). The Talmud12 and Midrashim13 also speak of the Lost Ten Tribes having all been exiled. One late Midrash suggests that one in eight remained but the exact meaning of this source is uncertain. Here and there, there do exist hints that a small percentage of the northern tribes remained and became assimilated amongst the Jews of Judah. Archaeologists have discovered a neighbourhood in Jerusalem which apparently was settled by refugees from northern Israel. These newcomers show the strong influence of Egyptian and foreign culture and for a while appear to have practiced cremation  which is forbidden by Jewish Law. Also Levites and other religious refugees had began to drift southward long before the Assyrian invasion. Nevertheless, SINCE NOTHING REALLY SIGNIFICANT REMAINED OF THEM THE OVERWHELMING MAJORITY MUST HAVE GONE INTO EXILE AS THE BIBLE SAYS THEY DID!!
                Archaeological excavations also prove the completeness of deportation. For the period after the Assyrian conquest of Israel there is a gap in archaeological finds everywhere with accompanying traces of burning and destruction. For some time afterwards there is no real new settlement and when organised habitation does begin it is small and impoverished, at least at first and nowhere can it be ascribed to the previous Israelite dwellers*17.
                In addition to the exile of the northern Israelites, Sennacherib boasted of having conquered cities in Judah and deported more than 200,000 people. This event is spoken of in Midrashim18 and other sources of Jewish tradition even though it is merely hinted at in the Bible:
                  "Now in the fourteenth year of king Hezekiah did Sennacherib king of Assyria come up against all the fenced cities of Judah and took them" (2-Kings 18;13).                                  
                The Prophet Isaiah had predicted that after all the Assyrian Exilations of northern Israel and Judah were completed only one in ten of the original population would remain and these apparently would be those in Judah who would later endure an additional exile of their own:
                "If there yet remain a tenth in it, it also shall be consumed" (Isaiah 6;13).
                The Jews who remained in Judah were destined to be exiled to Babylon and from there to return under the leadership of Ezra and Nehemiah. The Jews of Judah who had been exiled to Babylon did however retain consciousness of their national identity whereas the others ultimately did not. Those Jews who had been taken into exile previously by Sennacherib remained unheard of. They assumedly joined their brothers from the Ten Tribes and became assimilated with them[1].
                The Bible says that the Israelites were exiled because they worshipped foreign gods*19. The Children of Israel in the northern kingdom had not accepted the Mosaic Law but had become like the heathen around them. In their places of exile, pressures were to be exerted by environment and surroundings. It is obvious that the Lost Ten Tribes wherever they eventually were should not be expected to have become religiously observant in the Scriptural sense. Biblical passages and historical reality show that even their very Israelite origin they were to forget. Even so, in one place or another vague recollections of their past origins would be apparent, the original namesakes would sometimes remain and some portions of the people were to maintain in some ways behavioural patterns derived from The Hebraic Law. Even the pagan practices that some of them continued in the places to which they migrated show evidence of their former origins:
                  "And they left all the commandments of The LORD their God, and made them molten images, two calves, and made a sacred pole, and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served Baal.                                
                 "And they caused their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire and used divination and enchantments, and sold themselves to do evil in the sight of The LORD, to provoke him to anger" (2-Kings 17:16-17).
                The above practices were continued after the exile: The early Celtic Cimbrians were reported to carry a metallic bull before them in their migrations. The practice of passing people and animals once a year through the fire was carried out until very recently in Sweden, northern England, and Scotland. People would build bonfires on hills and pass their children and domestic beasts through or over the flames. It was believed that this protected them. In earlier times sacrifices would be consumed by the fires. This festivity was known as "Beltane" which in Celtic means "Fire of Bel". Bel was another form of the name Baal. A related custom was that of dancing around the Maypole, cf. "And made a sacred pole" in the Biblical passage quoted above.. The pagan Saxons in Europe worshipped at a gigantic pole called the Erminsul which Charlemagne later cut down.
                 "Therefore The LORD was very angry with Israel, and removed them (2 Kings 17;18).....
                 "Until The LORD removed Israel out of his sight, as he had said by all his servants the prophets. So was Israel carried away out of their own land to Assyria unto this day.
 (2-Kings 17:23).....   

The original Twelve Tribes of Israel had split into two kingdoms. Two tribes comprising "Judah" were in the south, and the ten tribes of  "Israel" were in the north. The Ten Northern Tribes were entirely taken away by the Assyrians to places in northern Mesopotamia, to the Caucasus area and to Eastern Iran.
                The Bible says that: "The King of Assyria took Samaria, and carried Israel away into Assyria, and placed them in Hala, and in Habor, and in the cities of the Medes" (2-Kings 17;6).
The Bible also mentions "Hara" (1-Chronicles 5; 26) in Eastern Iran as a place of exile. The Talmud and archaeological findings enable the identification of these places of re-settlement. Shortly after the exile and re-settlement every one of the said places became a center for a group of peoples who then appeared for the first time. They are known to history as the Cimmerians, Scythians, and Guti or Goths. It will be shown that these entities were (at least in part) the Lost Ten Tribes of Israel! Not only were exiles taken over land to the Cities of the medes etc but also a portion were transported by sea to the west. This is mentioned in the Books of Isaiah, Amos, and Ezekiel as we shall explain later. Some of these settled in Spain  and from there moved to the British Isles.
Apart from the northern Ten Tribes in the south there remained the Kingdom of Judah dominated by the Tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi alongside small minorities of refugees from the other tribes.
Later the Jews of Judah were also to be taken away to Babylon. From Babylon lead by Ezra, Shaltiel, and Nehemiah a portion of the Jews returned. The names and numbers of the families returning are given. Only families from the Tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi are mentioned. There is a discrepancy of about 20% between the numbers of those returning and the names mentioned. The Midrash says that this 20% represented remnants of the Ten Tribes who had attached themselves to Judah.
Nevertheless the overwhelming majority of the Ten Tribes had been exiled.
Nachmanides in the Book of Redemption explain the case well. Based on the Bible and Midrashim he points out  with the return from Babylon no-one from the Ten tribes is mentioned even though a small minority was present) because their destiny on a Tribal basis was to be realized in Exile. The small minority from them that returned with Judah would henceforth be counted as part of Judah. The Ten Tribes were, according to Prophecy, to have their own separate destiny.
They were also to lose their identity. They would forget who they were. They would not be conscious of their Israelite origins. In the End Times they will return and Judah will have difficulty in recognizing them.
This is described by Isaiah.
Isaiah 49:19-21.

     [Isaiah 49:19] For your waste and desolate places,
      And the land of your destruction,
      Will even now be too small for the inhabitants;
      And those who swallowed you up will be far away.

     [Isaiah 49:20] The children you will have,
      After you have lost the others,
      Will say again in your ears,
       The place is too small for me;
      Give me a place where I may dwell.

     [Isaiah 49:21] Then you will say in your heart,
      Who has begotten these for me,
      Since I have lost my children and am desolate,
      A captive, and wandering to and fro?
      And who has brought these up?
      There I was, left alone;
      But these, where were they?

See also:
Completeness of the Exile.

The Divine Purpose for the Exile and Division

Nachmanides. The Ten Tribes are still in Exile but will Return

To Hear a Talk based on the Text below:
The Exile of the Ten Tribes.
ca. 9 minutes


Biblical and Historical Outline


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