The British Israelites… Jehovah is still directing Human History
In the early Nineteenth Century, as part of the evangelical revival, a new interpretation of biblical history and prophecy conflated with British history appeared. Traditional myths about Joseph of Aramathea and Jesus visiting Glastonbury had been encouraged in the middle ages by the monks who also “discovered” the tomb of King Arthur in their grounds. In the millenarian fervour in that swept England at the Time of the Civil War biblical fundamentalists became convinced that God’s will was being expressed in earthly events and that they themselves were the chosen people, like the Americans since their rebellion. They searched the Old Testament and early British myths and came to believe that they were descendants of the lost tribes of Israel who had disappeared from history with the fall of the Neo-Assyrian Empire which had held them captive. The only original American religion, the Church of the Latter Day Saints, has a very similar ideo-dynamics.
This interpretation of history claims that the prophet Jeremiah, who was an historical figure known to have left Jerusalem after the fall of the city to the Babylonians, had travelled to Ireland taking with him not only a royal princess, the last heir to the throne of the house of David, but also the stone which was Jacob’s pillow when he had had his vision of the ladder to Heaven. Jeremiah arranged for the princess to marry the Irish king and their descendants can be traced down through the Irish, Scottish and English monarchs to Queen Elizabeth II who is thereby the legitimate heir to the throne of King David! The Stone of Destiny, also called Lia Fail, was the stone on which the Irish kings were crowned. It was subsequently taken from Ireland by the Gaels of Scotland who also used it as a coronation stone known as the Stone of Scone. Edward 1st tried to establish a United Kingdom of England and Scotland but following the untimely drowning of the heir to the Scottish throne, who was to marry Edward’s son, squabbles between rival Scottish claimants led to hundreds of years of animosity between the two nations. Edward took the Stone of Destiny to England and set it up in Westminster Abbey in a specially built throne. This is the Coronation Stone upon which English and now British monarchs must sit whilst being anointed with sacred oil in the manner described in the Old Testament.
The Nineteenth Century evangelical revival and spectacular growth of the British Empire led to revival of this radical reappraisal of the significance of the Monarchy and Anglican Church. Following the incarnation of Jesus, his followers claim they have a second covenant. The British Christians therefore hold both covenants. Consequently the Jews can only achieve the promise of gaining power over their enemies by converting to the Anglican faith and recognising the Queen as the legitimate heir of King David. This would fulfil many of the prophecies which had so far remained unrealised.
It is a brilliant solution to many problems of Biblical history and prophecy wrapped in a mystical magical mantle woven in the land of Geoffrey of Monmouth, John Milton and William Blake. Anyone who believes that the Old Testament is God’s revealed word and that he is still active in human history cannot really avoid this interpretation without deliberate hypocrisy. The miraculous failure of the Armada, the Restoration of the Monarchy after the fall of the Republic founded by the Puritan regicide Cromwell, the close-fought Battle of Britain where the military forces of the head of the Anglican Church and Defender of the Faith saved the world from the alliance of God-hating National Socialists of Germany and Russia. It is not surprising that many older people believe deep in the hearts that England is the Promised Land, the New Jerusalem?
Islam has much less invested in the fate of Jerusalem. Their most holy cities are Mecca and Medina. As people of The Book they too accept the historical accuracy of the Old Testament and are influenced by the examples of the Jewish kings and prophets, including Jesus as a prophet. It is strange that having recovered Jerusalem, after having lost it to Islamic armies twice before, the Christians should abandon the city leaving it to the Jews and Muslims to fight it out. Surely Jerusalem is the most important of place on Earth to the Christians, only the Jews have as much emotional investment. The Palestinian Arabs, who are almost identical racially to the Jews, lost their own homeland. The United Nations resolution granting the Zionists sovereign possession of Arab territory literally drove the Palestinian Arabs mad! American military and financial support for the State of Israel and indifference to the Zionists increasing seizure of Arab land combined with fratricidal war between Sunni and Shia rivals over descent from the Prophet is driving the Middle East into a bloodbath.
A possible solution
The only solution I can see is for the Britain, with the help of its largely Christian Commonwealth, to lead the way by exercising international pressure to declare Jerusalem a religious “free city” and to administer it on behalf of Jews, Christians and Moslems. Palestine could then be divided into independent Jewish and Palestinian states along the lines that were nearly agreed to firstly in the 1920s and later when President Clinton was almost successful in brokering a deal in 2001. Jerusalem itself would have to be outside the jurisdiction of both Palestinian states.
I personally think that there will be no end to conflict between Jew, Muslim and Christian and between Sunni and Shia unless Turkey, the fast growing new power in the region, returns to its previous territories, fairly recently seized by the allies, in order to put an end to the escalating chaos. It is time for non-Islamic Western powers to stop interfering. They have directly caused all the bloodshed and are still playing at ignorant and unworkable “nation building”. Now the best thing they can do is to help the Turkish Government restore the rule of law. After all the Turks are Sunni Muslims but not Arabs and have lived under democratic government and the rule of law for almost a century following the reforms of their great leader Ataturk. The Turks were our best non-Christian ally during the Cold War. Remember too that, although eager to join the European Union, their application has been treated with disdain by many members. Unless we give our whole hearted support to them in this very practical solution Turkey may lose its tolerant Islamic culture and slide into violent Islamic fundamentalism.