The Lost Ten Tribes went to the West according to Scripture and secular sources.
Which Nations however are of Israelite origin? How can we tell? Who really is a descendants of Israel? Can a person make an independent decision concerning oneself as an individual in this matter?
See Also our List of more than 120 proofs identifying the Lost Ten Tribes.

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 Ephraimite Criteria  

For a talk using the text below as its subject matter see:
Ephraimite Criteria: How do we know which peoples descend from Israel?
(ca. 32 minutes)
For a YouTube clip in which Yair Davidiy discusses the subject matter of this article see Below:
Ephraimite Criteria.
(ca. 28 minutes).

  How Do You Know  
 You Descend from Israel?  


(a) How Do You Know? How can one tell that the nation one belongs to is primarily of Israelite origin?
How can one determine that as an individual the chances are that a person has Israelite ancestry?

You do not know for sure but one can be fairly certain according to national and personal criteria that are often pertinent:
We concentrate in our studies on countries in which the Israelites were and are dominant according to criteria that have proven themselves.
This is justified by the Bible.

The standards we apply include:
(1) National Level
(2) Individual Criteria


  1. Blessings: Economic and Physical Blessings as promised to Israel in Scripture.

    Economic and Physical Blessings:
    A Few (out of many) Selected Sources:
    The Israelites (especially the Ten Tribes, see The Purpose of Exile and Loss of Identity) were to:
    Rule Over OTHER Peoples:
    Genesis 27:29 48:19 "A MULTITUDE OF NATIONS" (Hebrew: "Malo HaGoyim" i.e. Complete the Peoples, Onkelos: = Rule over the nations), Psalms 47:3
    be Seafarers Isaiah 42:10
    be Be the Dominant World Power Numbers 24:7-9 Micah 5:7-9
    be the World Military Might: Deuteronomy 33:27 33:29 Jer. 51:20-21
    be the enforcer of the peace and policeman of the globe The Battle-Axe of the Almighty or "Police-Man of the Globe"
    Jeremiah 51:20, Zechariah 10:7
    they would Defeat Edom (Germany and Europe) Ez. 25:14 Obad. 1:18

    Physical-Materialistic Characteristics:
    A Few (out of many) Selected Sources:
    The Ten Tribes were to be:
    Number hundreds of Millions; Extemely Numerous: Genesis 15:5, 22:17,  24:60, 32:12, Numbers 23:10, Isaiah 10:22, 24:16, 26:15 Hos.1:10
    Possess Agricultural Plenty: Gen 27:28 49:25 Deut 33:13-16  Hoshea 2:8
    Control vast Mineral Resources Genesis 49:25  Deuteronomy 33:13, 15
    rule over GATE(s) OF YOUR ENEMIES (International Strategic Points) Genesis 22:17  24:60

  2. Indications of Scripture: Biblical Evidence predicting whereto the Lost Ten Tribes would go, what type of religion and government they would have, etc.

    Physical-Materialistic Geographical Characteristics:
    A Few (out of many) Selected Sources:
    The Ten Tribes were to be:
    Ends of the Earth: Isaiah 24:16, 26:15, 41:8-9 43:6 49:6
    Isles Isaiah 24:15  49:6 60:9 Jeremiah 31: 9-10
    Thighs, Peninsulas, and Coasts: Jeremiah 31:8
    Tarshish (Atlantic Ocean Area) Isaiah 60:9
    Western Location:  Isaiah 24:14, Hosea 1:10
    Located to the Northwest of the Land of Israel: Isaiah 49:12
    In the "North" Land:  Jeremiah 3:18  31: 6-10
    Australia ("Land of  Sinim") and New Zealand Isaiah 49:12
    See also Brit-Am Computer Codes on Australia and New Zealand
    Zarephath, meaning France and Britain, Obadiah 1:20
    Many Waters (Several Oceans) Numbers 24:7

    Manasseh meaning the USA has a name connoting Responsible Representation whereas Ephraim (UK) symbolizes the principle of aristocracy. The name America comes from the Hebrew "Ha-Maciri" meaning belong to the Macir the first born son of Manasseh. Macir means "Right to Sell and Buy" i.e. the Concept of capitalism and Free Enterprise.
    Why the USA is Manasseh.

  3. Groundwork: Historical, Archaeological, and Related Proofs showing paths of migration. See Jeremiah 31:21. Dolmens showing Pathway of Migration  Jeremiah 31:21

  4. Judah: Affinity with the Jews. : This entails proven feelings of kinship and sympathy with the Jews and a Relative Lack of Anti-Semitism when compared with others. This holds true even though Prophecy (Isaiah 11:13) also indicates that a certain degree of tension would always exist almost to the end betweeen "Ephraim" and Judah.

  5. Originality: Innovation and Intellect: A minimal degree of national Intellectual Wisdom and Honesty, cf. Deuteronomy 4:6.

  6. Bravery: Proven Military Prowess in the past at least and at present in potential, see Deuteronomy 33:29.

  7. Empathy: The Doing of Social Justice.
    Abraham was blessed to become a great and mighty nation that his descendants might do "justice and judgement" see Genesis 18:19.

  8. Israelite Self-Identification

  9. Israelite Identification, means that in some way a significant (more often in quality rather than in numbers) portion of the peoples concerned at some stage or other to a degree are known to have identified themselves as Hebraic.
    This holds in many cases but not in all of them.
    1. The USA had its own Israelite-identifying groups such as the early Puritans, some of the Founding Fathers, the Mormons, and numerous others, in fact within the whole structure of American religion especially of the Fundamentalist variety there have been such tendencies.
      Israelite Identification is a recurring feature in American History.
      Israelite Identifying groups from Europe even from such places as Germany and Russia and like-minded individuals from all over the world ALL tended to gravitate to the USA. USA support for the State of Israel also says something about an underlying realization of communality.
    2. Family Connection: The identified group will have a known and proven "ethnic" link to some degree to other of the peoples identified as "Israelite" so that the proofs for one may applied to the other and the effect becomes cumulative.
    3. British. Anglo-Saxon legend and tradition presumed Hebrew ancestry. Puritans. Restoration Movement. Personal Identification of Leading figures. Welsh Hebrew origins known of from early times. Scottish Food taboos and traditions.
    4. Ireland. Irish legend and tradition presupposes a significant degree of Hebrew ancestry.
    5. The Finnish of Finland believed themselves descended from the Lost Tribes of Israel.
    6. Denmark Sweden and Norway had periods of identification with Israel.
      Early Swedish histories (quoted in "The Tribes") spoke of Hebrew ancestry.
      The Danes also had an Israelite tradition and identified strongly with Jews at time of need.
      Descendants of Scandinavians in USA were prominent in Israelite Identification groupings and pro-Israel activities.
    7. Netherlands (Holland) acceptance of Jews and identification with them.
      Tradition of Israelite origin amongst the Frisians and Puritan type Hebraic movements and sympathies.
    8. Belgium: Similar to Netherlands but moderated by Roman Catholic religion.
    9. France: Protestant French (Huguenots) identified with Israel. Periods of identification with Jews. Feeling amongst intellectuals of Gaul having had a Semitic (Hebrew) origin. Much of French History may even be seen as a struggle between the Hebraic and the non-Hebraic elements and sentiment.
    10. Switzerland: Hebraic Calvinists. Some very moderated Hebraic feeling throughout.

  10. Family Connection: The identified group should have proven "ethnic" links to at least one of the other identified groups so that the proofs of one may be applied to the other.

  11. Tribal Affiliation: The Exiled Israelites were destined to settle in groups retaining much of their original Tribal cohesion or later through some kind of "homing" instinct members of the same Tribe tended to converge together. See Isaiah 11:12 and the Midrash. We should therefore be able to at least tentatively identify specific national groups with specific Israelite Tribes and show how the Tribal Characteristics came through.

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  1. INNER IDENTIFICATION: Do you feel Israelite or Jewish or would you like to be so considered?
  2. ANCESTRY: Do you have Jewish ancestors or those who were probably Israelites according to Brit-Am and related research findings?
    If you do not have such ancestry or are not sure would you be prepared to totally and irrevocably identify as an Israelite?
  3. SCRIPTURE: Do you believe in the Bible? Would you be prepared to keep Biblical Laws IF you were convinced at any stage that the Bible requires you to do so?
  4. SOCIAL SURROUNDINGS: Do you now live amongst people of Brit-Am Israelite or Jewish origin and do you identify with them and on the whole are accepted by them? At the least do you wish to live amongst such people?
  5. PHILO-JUDAIC: Are you pro-Jewish? At the least do you reject anti-Semitism and even feel offended by it? Would you like to see a union between "Israel" and Judah?
  6. GOOD QUALITIES: These are based on
    We have counted these under one heading since they are inter-related and someone who has one of the three qualities in effect must have the two others.
    The Sages said that there are three signs that distinguish descendants of Israel: They are merciful, kind, and modest.
    To fulfill these criteria one does not necessarily have to be a "saint" just to judge one's reactions all other things being equal:

    1. MERCY: Do you feel sympathy for others? Do you believe in social justice? Do you try to take account of the sensitivities of others?

    2. ALTRUISM: KINDNESS: Are you kind to others? At the least do you feel that needless suffering should not be inflicted on others but rather where possible good be done unto them?

    3. MODESTY: Are you prepared to do good and act worthily even though you may receive no reward or recognition and perhaps even suffer because of it?

  7. FAMILY: If you fulfill the above requirements do some members of your family now or in the past also share the said sentiments and qualities?

Please Note: It is obvious that if someone is of Israelite descent (point 2 above) they are Israelite whether or not they fulfill any of the other listed points. The criteria however may be useful for those who are not certain or cannot provide evidence that is satisfactory from the viewpoint of others.

(b) Can I marry a Jew if I am non-Jewish but Israelite?

No. The Lost Ten tribes had their identity suspended (see Hosea 1:9, Jeremiah 3:8) temporarily in the religious sense in order to release them from the consequences of not keeping the Law and the obligation of keeping it. In the Messianic Era however they will return and things will be as they previously were.

More Questions and Answers are to be found in the entry,
"Replies to Queries: Criteria"

Ephraimite Criteria.avi

Duration: 28 minutes


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