The Birthright

Chapter 4--

America & Britain in Prophecy:
The Birthright Finally Realized!

ow did God at last fulfill the birthright promises of a GREAT NATION and a COMPANY OF NATIONS (Gen. 35:11; 48-49)? The answer is a story which should be quite familiar to most Americans and Britons-because it is simply the story of the modern history of our nations!
Why this matters ...
Arguing forward... Arguing backward...

(a) Does God keep His promises?
If no, stop here.

(b) Were any promises of physical blessings made to the Biblical patriarchs?
If no, stop here.

(c) Is anyone alive today (regardless of ethnicity, race, language, geographical location, ...) the recipient of promises of physical blessings made to the patriarchs?
If no, stop here.

(d) If someone is a recipient, are there special responsibilities that go along with those blessings?
If no, stop here.

(e) If there are special responsibilities, then do we need to discover if we are the ones with those special responsibilities?
If no, stop here.

(f) If we are the ones with those special responsibilities, should we perform them?
If no, stop here.

(g) Get to it! Perform those special responsibilities!

(a) As a nation (of all kinds of ethnicities, races, languages, ...), do we have more than our share of physical blessings?
If no, stop here.

(b) Does God gives us these blessings?
If no, stop here.

(c) Does God have a reason for giving us these blessings?
If no, stop here.

(d) Is any part of the reason the promises of physical blessings given to the Biblical patriarchs?
If no, stop here.

(e) Do God's blessings also come with special responsibilities for those blessed?
If no, stop here.

(f) Do we have special responsibilities?
If no, stop here.

(g) Let's get to it! Let's perform those special responsibilities!

In 1840, Wilson concluded that the British Empire was blessed as a result of the promises to the patriarchs, and so had a responsibility to set a Christian example, and evangelize, the whole world. He warned that if the British Empire did not do this, its future was bleak.
Was he right?

Of course, the vast majority of our people do not comprehend this most important aspect about our nations' history. Many of us fail to grasp the reason for the incredible rise of the English-speaking peoples to unparalleled greatness and prosperity. As Winston Churchill said before the U.S. Congress on December 26, 1941, "He must indeed have a blind soul who cannot see that some great purpose and design is being worked out here below."

Let's now examine the last few centuries of American and British history from the awesome perspective of God's Word.

The World's Greatest Colonizers

By the early 1500s, Spain had become the most powerful nation in Europe--enjoying almost total naval supremacy. England, on the other hand, was only an average power. But then came England's victory over the Spanish Armada in 1588. Amazingly, the Armada was defeated-not so much by English might as by stormy weather! Winston Churchill later wrote that "the defeat of the Armada came as a MIRACLE.... One of the medals struck to commemorate the victory bears the inscription 'Afflavit Deus et dissipantur'-'God blew and they were scattered'" (History of the English-Speaking Peoples, vol. 2).

From that day forward, English sailors confidently believed they could more than hold their own against their Spanish counterparts. It was England's naval confidence on the high seas which gave her the courage to make permanent settlements around the world.

Chief among the world's colonizing nations were the Anglo-Saxon-Celtic peoples from the British Isles. Only Bible prophecy explains why, beginning in the early 1600s, the colonizing instinct became so strong in these peoples. God, remember, had promised Jacob, "Your descendants shall be as the dust of the earth; you shall spread abroad to the west and the east, to the north and the south" (Gen. 28:14). So Jacob's descendants were destined to become the world's foremost colonizers!

"So God give thee of the dew of heaven, of the fatplaces of the earth, and plentyof corn [grain] and wine."

--Genesis 27:28 JPS

Remember, also, that Joseph's descendants would become the chief colonizers of Israel: "Joseph is a fruitful bough, a fruitful bough by a well; his branches run over the wall" (Gen. 49:22). But where would they "run over the wall" (colonize)? Verse 26: "Up to the utmost bound of the everlasting hills." Genesis 27:28 says they would be given the "fat places of the earth" (JPS). Fulfillment of some of these blessings can be seen in the words of the song, "America the Beautiful," by Katherine Lee Bates: "O beautiful for spacious skies, for amber waves of grain, for purple mountain majesties above the fruited plain!"

By itself, the cozy island of Britain is an incredibly beautiful and productive land. Yet remember that, according to prophecy, the people there would someday say, "The place is TOO SMALL for me; give me a place where I may dwell" (Is. 49:20). So, from this small homeland, Britons went forth and colonized nine-tenths of the North American continent, the whole continent of Australia, the beautiful, rich lands of New Zealand, parts of South Africa and numerous other islands and territories.

There is no other instance in the entire history of the world where such a small, seemingly insignificant people spread out around the globe, successfully colonizing such enormous, rich tracts of land--thereby becoming many nations!

How did Britain become "too small"--creating the need to colonize? Historians reveal that various factors (war, famine, disease) kept the population of Britain from increasing very rapidly until the Industrial Revolution (1750-1850). Then, suddenly, a population explosion occurred. British historian, Colin Cross, observes that "one of the unexplained mysteries of social history is the explosion in the size of the population of Great Britain between 1750 and 1850. For generations the British population had been static, or rising only slightly. Then in the space of a century it almost trebled-from 7.7 million in 1750 to 20.7 million in 1850. Why it happened is unknown.... It must just be recorded that human reproduction and vitality follows unpredictable patterns.... Britain was a dynamic country and one of the marks of its dynamism was the population explosion" (Fall of the British Empire, p. 155).

Very striking here is the time element! As we saw earlier, Israel had to wait 2,520 years from the time of her Assyrian oppression and captivity before receiving the actual fulfillment of the birthright promises. This coincides exactly with Britain's population explosion, which gave the British the impetus to spread abroad.

Lord Curzon, Viceroy of India, in 1907, expressed the belief that God had put in the Englishmen a divine impulse to establish colonies around the globe: "I would describe the [British] Empire... as the result, not of an accident or a series of accidents, but of an instinct-that ineradicable and divinely implanted impulse, which has sent the Englishman forth into the uttermost parts of the earth, and made him there the parent of new societies and the architect of unpremeditated creations" (The British Empire, BBC TV and Time-Life Books, p. 2,466).

A Nation and a Company of Nations

As Creator, Possessor and Ruler of this earth, it is within God's prerogative to give any nation or individual whatever portion of this earth He chooses (Gen. 14:19; Acts 17:23-26). The French assemblyman Alexis de Tocqueville made these incisive comments in his famous 1835 work, Democracy in America: "The Indians occupied but did not possess the land. It is by agriculture that man wins the soil, and the first inhabitants of North America lived by hunting.... Providence [God] when it placed them amid the riches of the New World, seems to have granted them a short lease only; they were there, in some sense, only waiting. Those coasts so well suited for trade and industry, those deep rivers, that inexhaustible valley of the Mississippi-in short, the whole continent-seemed the yet empty cradle of a GREAT NATION" (p. 24).

De Tocqueville further stated, "When the Creator handed the earth over to men, it was young and inexhaustible, but they were weak and ignorant; and by the time that they had learned to take advantage of the treasures it contained, they already covered its face, and soon they were having to fight for the right to an asylum where they could rest in freedom. It was then that North America was discovered, as if God had held it in reserve and it had only just arisen above the waters of the flood" (p. 258).

North America was indeed held "in reserve" by God for the descendants of Israel. As God had inspired Moses to write, "When the Most High divided their inheritance to the nations, when He separated the sons of Adam, He set the boundaries of the peoples [all other nations] according to the number of the children of Israel [whose population size He foresaw and planned for]" (Deut. 32:8)!

Great Britain established its first permanent colony in North America at Jamestown, Virginia, in 1607. In 1620, the Mayflower landed at Plymouth Rock with its Pilgrim settlers. The Puritans arrived soon afterward to establish the Massachusetts Bay Colony. By the early 1700s, a string of 13 thriving British colonies were firmly established along the eastern seaboard of North America. In the 1763 Treaty of Paris, France ceded to Britain her Canadian colonies, as well as all the Louisiana Territory east of the Mississippi River-excluding the city of New Orleans. Thus the die had been cast toward making the Anglo-Saxon-Celtic peoples the dominant ethnic group in North America.

Remember, Joseph's descendants were to become a "great nation" and a "company of nations." Only 12 years after the first Treaty of Paris in 1763, the 13 British colonies in North America rebelled against the Mother Country. During their War of Independence (1775-1783), the upstart Americans threw off the Old World's yoke.

Subsequently, the second Treaty of Paris was signed on September 3, 1783-this time by British and American diplomats. In this treaty, Britain officially recognized the United States as a sovereign nation and ceded all of her North American territories south of the Great Lakes to the victorious rebels. Spain's Florida Territory then formed the southern boundary of the new Republic, and the Mississippi River formed its western boundary. Now it could rightly be said that America was assured of becoming the GREAT NATION God had promised.

Ephraim and Manasseh--Which Is Which?
Remember from chapter one what God Almighty inspired the Patriarch Jacob to prophesy of the descendants of Joseph's two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh: "He [Manasseh] also shall be A NATION-and he also shall be GREAT [i.e. a GREAT NATION or GREAT PEOPLE]-but nevertheless his younger brother [Ephraim] shall be GREATER than he, and his race shall be a MULTITUDE OF NATIONS" (Gen. 48:19 Fenton). Millions have come to see the fulfillment of that divine promise in the emergence to nationhood of the United States (the GREAT NATION); and they have also come to believe that Britain and her British-descended Commonwealth nations constitute the MULTITUDE OF NATIONS-both of which Almighty God prophesied would rise to prominence "in the last days" (cf. Gen. 48-49; Deut. 33).

In recent years, however, some have concluded that the United States is modern Ephraim and that Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand are Manasseh. This view is based, primarily, on three arguments: 1) America is the "multitude of nations" because it is composed of 50 states; 2) the U.S., at its height, was "greater" in wealth and power than Britain at its height; and 3) the U.S. is "younger" than Britain-just as Ephraim was younger than Manasseh. Do these points prove the case? Let's look at them one at a time.

First, could the 50 states of the Union be considered 50 "nations"? Could the U.S. now be, or ever have been, looked upon as a "multitude of nations" in any sense? Emphatically, no! America is "ONE nation under God, indivisible" (as stated in the U.S. Pledge of Allegiance). The American Civil War was fought (1861-1865) to prevent the United States from being rent asunder into two nations-the Union and the Confederacy. Our nation's motto, E Pluribus Unum, means, "From many [people], ONE [nation]"! During the 1960s, when various state governors tried to prevent racial desegregation, U.S. presidents sent federal law enforcement officers into certain states (Arkansas, Alabama and Mississippi) to prove that those states were not sovereign, or independent, but had to answer to a higher power-the U.S. Federal Government! Not one of the 50 states which presently make up the United States is a sovereign nation! The U.S. is definitely, as De Toqueville called it, "A GREAT NATION"-i.e. Manasseh!

By the same token, it would be wrong to call Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand "A great nation." They, in fact, form a plurality of independent, sovereign nations-each possessing its own parliament with complete authority over its own citizens, foreign policy, defense and finances. Canada, Australia and New Zealand each has a Governor General as a representative of the British Crown. However, this is a very loose tie, as these three countries look upon the British monarch as only a figurehead. Of course some will argue that the British Empire, which preceded the British Commonwealth, was the great single nation. Yet that too is false. Britain was the "Mother Country" which, through colonization, gave birth to several other British nations. Clearly, Britain is Ephraim!

Second, was the American zenith of greatness really higher than Britain's? Absolutely not! The British directly ruled a quarter of the earth's land and nearly a third of its population. Even today, Canada alone is territorially larger than the entire United States, and Australia is almost as big as the territory of America's 48 contiguous states. Britain directly possessed the wealth of all these regions too. It only seems that America has possessed a greater percentage of wealth than Britain did. Why? Because advances in technology have enabled so much greater things to be accomplished with money than could ever have been done before. For example, a million dollars in today's money will buy only a tiny fraction of what a million dollars would have bought in the 1800s--yet today it could buy much better things that did not even exist then!

What about military dominance? It is true that, since America was the only nation in possession of the atomic bomb after World War II, the ratio of power between the U.S. and the rest of the world was greater at that time than any other nation has ever enjoyed. (In fact, none have even come close.) However, this only lasted about four short years-during which time the U.S. was in an extremely tight alliance with Great Britain. The tremendous military supremacy Britain enjoyed during its heyday lasted far longer than America's. And Britain has possessed far more of the vital "sea gates" than America. Here, again, it is obvious that Britain is Ephraim and the U.S.A. is Manasseh.

Third, just because the United States of America is a younger state than the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, does that mean that the U.S. must be Ephraim, Joseph's younger son, and that the U.K. must be Manasseh? Definitely not! These two brother peoples lived together in Britain for centuries. Thus, both peoples are basically the same age! However, from a national perspective, consider that, with the separation of the two brothers through the War of Independence (1775-1783), the Americans were forming into a "great nation" well before the British expanded into a "multitude of nations." And the United States is much older than the British Commonwealth, which was not formally established until the Statute of Westminster in 1931.

But think about this, too. Joseph gave up his tribal status among the Twelve Tribes of Israel to his sons Ephraim and Manasseh. These then became two separate tribes--meaning there were now THIRTEEN Tribes of Israel in all (though the count normally stayed at 12 since the Levites didn't have a territorial allotment in the Promised Land). Benjamin, Jacob's 12th son, then moved into the 11th position vacated by Joseph. And the 12th and 13th positions, if we reckon their births chronologically, would be filled by Israel's adopted sons, Manasseh and Ephraim respectively. However, because Scripture makes it very clear that God, through Jacob, "set Ephraim before Manasseh" (Gen. 48:20), their two positions should be reversed-Ephraim being made 12th and Manasseh becoming 13th. (Note the recurrence of 13 in American heritage-13 colonies, 13 flag stripes, 13 everything on the Great Seal-see box: "Clues from Our National Heraldry.") Thus Ephraim would inherit the birthright first and Manasseh would follow. And that is exactly what happened--the 1800s were the "British Century" and the 1900s have been the "American Century."

It should now be crystal clear. Modern Ephraim is definitely the U.K., Canada, Australia and New Zealand, while Manasseh, without question, is the U.S.A.

Again, the time period for all of this is extremely significant, as we saw in chapter two. If we begin counting the seven prophetic times (2,520 years) of Leviticus 26 from the initial Assyrian incursions into Israel around the mid-740s to early 730s B.C., we would end our count around A.D. 1776 (the signing of the Declaration of Independence) or 1783 (the Treaty of Paris recognizing American independence). If we begin counting from Israel's first Assyrian deportation (c. 734-732 B.C.), we arrive at 1787-1789. The U.S. Constitution was signed in 1787, ratified in 1788 and put into force in 1789. Thus was established the long-prophesied great single nation of Manasseh (Gen. 48)!

What about counting from the three-year siege of Israel's capital city of Samaria (c. 724-721 B.C.)-the final end of the Kingdom of Israel at the time of its second deportation? That takes us to 1797-1800. As we will shortly see, it was in this time frame that, by defeating the French, unquestioned naval supremacy fell to the British-enabling modern Ephraim to become the prophesied "company of nations"!

It is also an astounding fact that exactly 2,520 years after the ancient capital of Samaria fell in 721 B.C., U.S. federal offices were moved in 1800 from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to a NEW capital city-Washington, D.C.! Truly, only the great, omnipotent God could have orchestrated such events to happen on such a precise time scale! Finally, after the passing of the seven times, there would be no more delay! The incredible birthright promises of "a nation and a company of nations" would be fulfilled. This required separating the two brothers, Ephraim and Manasseh. So, in the late 1700s, God did just that.

He certainly guided the outcome of the Revolution, or the Americans would have been crushed by the far-more-powerful British. Benjamin Franklin reminded the Constitutional Convention in 1787, "In the beginning of the contest with Great Britain, when we were sensible of danger, we had daily prayer in this room for the divine protection.

"Our prayers, sir, were answered. All of us who were engaged in the struggle must have observed frequent instances of a superintending Providence in our favor. To that kind Providence we owe this happy opportunity of consulting in peace on the means of establishing our future national felicity."

"To Joseph were born two sons... whom Asenath, the daughter ofPoti-Pherah priest of On,bore to him."
--Genesis 41:50

This, however, does NOT mean that God favored the Americans (Manassites) over the British (Ephraimites). He was simply working out His purpose. God gave the Americans victory when they fought in their own land-but NOT when they advanced into British Canadian territory: "From the beginning, America's first campaign of territorial conquest [into Canada] seemed dogged with misfortune. Everything went wrong.... The annexation of Canada was clearly not in God's plan for the United States.... It was as if God had a different plan for Canada... a plan separate and distinct from His plan for America" (Peter Marshall and David Manuel, The Light and the Glory, pp. 292, 295-296). And so He did. God, we now know, had reserved that area for Ephraim! Thus, God divided the descendants of Ephraim and Manasseh politically and began to bless them in their separate courses-yet not so separate, for these sons of Joseph are close brothers. The Declaration of Independence even mentions "the ties of our common kindred"!

America's "Manifest Destiny"

Following right on the heels of the end of the 2,520-year delay in bestowing the promised birthright blessings, Napoleon Bonaparte's war-weary French Empire made an incredible deal with U.S. President Thomas Jefferson in 1803. France sold the Louisiana Territory to America for about $15 million, a paltry five cents per acre! By the "Louisiana Purchase," the U.S. acquired more than 500 million acres of the richest, most fertile farmland on earth-the "Breadbasket of the World." And, by this awesome purchase, the size of the U.S.A. grew by about 140 percent!

Napoleon is said to have remarked, "This accession of territory affirms forever the power of the United States." Robert Livingstone (U.S. ambassador to France) is said to have commented, "From this day the United States take their place among the powers of the first rank." Never before in the history of mankind had any nation struck such a wonderful deal!

Massive territorial expansion continued, and many Americans came to believe in "Manifest Destiny--that God had foreordained the American people to possess the vast land between Mexico and Canada, "from sea to shining sea." During the 1840s, the idea of America's "Manifest Destiny" swept the nation like a religious revival.

In The United States Magazine and Democratic Review, John L. O'Sullivan wrote of "the fulfillment of our manifest destiny to overspread the continent allotted by Providence [God] for the free development of our yearly multiplying millions." He argued that America's claim to the Oregon Territory was "the right of our manifest destiny to overspread and possess the whole continent which Providence has given us for the development of liberty and federative self-government."

In exactly 70 years, 1783-1853, the United States acquired all the territory of the original contiguous 48 states (see map on this page). Never before in the entire history of the world had any nation acquired so much land so cheaply! But that was not the end of U.S. territorial acquisitions!

America's hunger for new land was still not fully satisfied. So, in 1867, the U.S. purchased "Russian America" (Alaska) from Russia for the unbelievably low price of $7,200,000-only about two cents per acre! Despite the extremely low cost, the fantastic purchase of Alaska was ridiculed by some Americans as "Seward's Icebox" and "Seward's Folly" (William Seward was America's Secretary of State who negotiated the purchase). But those foolish Americans soon came to see their own folly when GOLD was discovered in the Klondike region in 1896.

Furthermore, the "Alaskan Pipeline" is now a major source of American OIL! And the sale of Alaskan fish, lumber, minerals, petroleum and other commercial products nets the U.S. tens of billions of dollars annually!

With the purchase of Alaska in 1867, America had acquired her final territorial acquisition in continental North America. Thus, during a period of a mere 84 years (1783-1867), the United States received legitimate titles to all of the contiguous 48 states, plus the mineral-rich land of Alaska! Later, America would receive titles to Hawaii, Puerto Rico and other beautiful and strategically important islands.

Prophesied Anglo-American Military Might

During Israel's 40-year sojourn in the desert, its enemies hired Balaam, a false prophet, to employ enchantments against the people of Israel-hoping to curse them. But, God forced Balaam, against his will, to prophesy good things regarding Israel (Num. 22-24).

Balaam asked, "How shall I curse [Israel] whom God has not cursed? And how shall I denounce whom the LORD has not denounced?... How lovely are your tents, O Jacob! Your dwellings, O Israel!... He has strength like a wild ox ["unicorn" KJV-symbolic here of a very powerful nation]; he shall consume the nations, his enemies; he shall break their bones and pierce them with his arrows. He bows down, he lies down as a lion; and as a lion, who will rouse him? Blessed is he who blesses you [Israel], and cursed is he who curses you" (23:8; 24:5, 8-9).

The Prophet Micah also revealed that the modern descendants of Israel would be like the king of beasts among the nations of this earth. "And the remnant of Jacob shall be among the Gentiles, in the midst of many peoples, like a lion among the beasts of the forest, like a young lion among flocks of sheep, who, if he passes through, both treads down and tears in pieces, and none can deliver. Your hand shall be lifted against your adversaries, and all your enemies shall be cut off" (Mic. 5:8-9)!

Remember from chapter one that, of Israel's descendants, Joseph's offspring were prophesied to become the most powerful in military prowess. In fact, they would become the most powerful nations on earth! Of Joseph "in the last days," Jacob said, "The archers [his enemies] have bitterly grieved him, shot at him and hated him. But his bow remained in strength, and the arms of his hands were made strong by the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob... who will help you" (Gen. 49:1, 23-25). Clearly, Joseph's descendants would become MIGHTY in military power "in the last days.--

We also saw a similar picture of modern Joseph given to Moses: "His glory is like a firstborn bull, and his horns [weapons] are like the horns of a wild ox ["unicorns" KJV]; together with them he shall push the peoples [Gentile nations] to the ends of the earth; they are the ten thousands of Ephraim, and they are the thousands of Manasseh" (Deut. 33:17). How did God fulfill His many promises regarding the people of Israel becoming as powerful as a lion or a wild bull among the nations of this world?

Clues from Our National Heraldry
In Numbers 2:2-34, God commanded the tribes of ancient Israel on their way to the Promised Land to divide into four brigades of three tribes each when they set up camp--with each brigade arranged on one side of the square camp. Each brigade would assemble behind the "standard" of its leading tribe on its side. The four leading tribes were Judah, Reuben, Ephraim and Dan. The Jewish Encyclopaedia ("Flag") and many other sources attest that the ancient heraldic symbol on the standard of Ephraim was a bull or ox. Dan's, as we saw in chapter two, was an eagle. Reuben's was a man. And the symbol of Judah was a lion.

The origin of these symbols can be traced to the prophecies God gave regarding particular tribes (Gen. 49; Deut. 33). Remember what God had said of Ephraim and Manasseh: "His glory is like a firstborn BULL, and his horns [weapons] are like the horns of a wild OX ["UNICORNS" KJV]" (Deut. 33:17). Notice that the New King James replaced the King James word "unicorns" with "a wild ox." This is certainly correct since the medieval unicorn idea is thought to have originated from the bovine oryx of the Sinai Peninsula and not from any horse-related animals!

In Genesis 49:9, God said, "Judah is a lion's whelp." The lion became the national symbol of Judah--and was later tied to the House of David. Jesus Christ, the Messiah who sprang from that line, is called "the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David" (Rev. 5:5). But we have also seen the lion used as a symbol of Joseph's military power (Mic. 5:8-9) along with the bull and wild ox (or unicorn).

Recall that, in later years, Jeroboam, the first king of northern Israel, would erect two golden BULLS--one each in the cities of Dan and Bethel--for the Israelites to worship (1 Kings 12:28-33). As Jeroboam was "an Ephraimite" (11:26) of the "house of Joseph" (v. 28), he may have used the fact that the bull was his own tribal symbol to introduce it into Israel's new pagan worship. The Angles (Angli) who immigrated to Britain in the 400s A.D. were people who once worshipped a bull or heifer. Is it any wonder that a well-known nickname for the English is "John Bull"?

Of course, we see these symbols elsewhere in Scripture too. For instance, Israel became associated with THE LION AND THE UNICORN (or wild ox) in Numbers 24:8-9 (KJV)--representing the scepter and birthright tribes of Judah and Joseph respectively. Incredibly, both these symbols appear on the British Coat of Arms, their Great Seal. Between the Lion and the Unicorn are the Old French words, Honi soit qui mal y pense, meaning "Evil to him who thinks evil"--of Britain, that is. This is very similar to the birthright promise: "Cursed be everyone who curses you" (Gen. 27:29; cf. Num. 24:9). At the bottom are words, Dieu et mon droit, meaning "God and my [birth] right." How remarkable! Ephraim was the leading tribe of the family of Joseph who long ago used the BULL as its tribal symbol. The Ephraimites have been the chief possessor of God's birthright blessings (1 Chron. 5:2; Gen. 48:19). As God declares, "Ephraim is My firstborn" (Jer. 31:9). Isn't it naturally fitting that those BIRTHRIGHT people should today have as one of their mottoes, "God and my [birth] right"?

What about the United States? The fact that America began with 13 colonies, and that America's Great Seal has numerous sets of 13 on it, has convinced some that there was a reason for this number 13 being used in connection with Manasseh--the 13th tribe of Israel. The reverse face of the Great Seal (seen on the back of a dollar bill) displays a pyramid with 13 steps; and atop the pyramid is an "all-seeing eye," representing the "eye of God." The obverse face shows an eagle holding in its right claws an olive branch (representing peace), having 13 leaves and 13 olive berries. In its left talons, the eagle is holding 13 arrows (representing its power to fight). Furthermore, on the eagle's breast is a shield, having 13 bars and 13 stripes, representing the 13 original British colonies. Above the eagle's head are 13 stars within a cloud of glory, and in his mouth is a scroll bearing 13 letters--E PLURIBUS UNUM! Thus the number 13 is stamped all over America's Great Seal. Did Almighty God have a hand in seeing to it that the United States of America began with 13 colonies, as a fit reminder that the core peoples of this new nation were, in fact, descendants of Manasseh, the 13th tribe of the ancient Kingdom of Israel?

Let's notice some of the particulars from the Great Seal in light of a few verses. Eagle: "You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles' wings and brought you to Myself" (Ex. 19:4). Remember, as mentioned previously, that Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin both wanted an Exodus theme on the seal. Olive branch: Israel's "branches shall spread; his beauty shall be as the olive tree" (Hos. 14:6); "Joseph is a fruitful bough... whose branches run over the wall" (Gen. 49:22). The olive branch "is particularly the heraldic device of the tribe of Manasseh" (E. Raymond Capt, Our Great Seal: The Symbols of Our Heritage and Our Destiny, 1979, p. 49). Arrows: "The archers have bitterly grieved [Joseph].... But his bow remained in strength... by the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob" (Gen. 49:23-24). The golden radiance breaking from within a cloud represents the shekinah (Heb. "indwelling") glory of God--His presence--such as in the pillar of cloud and fire by which God led the ancient Israelites through the wilderness. Notice that the 13 stars in the glory are arranged in a "Star of David" formation!

When we remember that the mother of Ephraim and Manasseh was an Egyptian (Gen. 41:45), it is amazing to find the main symbol of ancient Egypt--the Great Pyramid--on the reverse side of America's seal. This becomes even more compelling when we learn that on the reverse side of the British seal is the other great symbol of ancient Egypt--the Sphynx!

As mentioned earlier in this chapter, a global power shift occurred in the last few years of the 1700s. Napoleon Bonaparte attempted to seize Egypt, fully intending to gain control of the Mideast and, eventually, to wrest India from the British as a prized imperial possession. But he was thwarted by the British navy. In 1798, Britain's Admiral Horatio Nelson tracked Napoleon's French fleet to Aboukir Bay, Egypt, and then almost destroyed it at the famous Battle of the Nile.

"Overnight, the Mediterranean became an English sea. Napoleon's army, although intact, was stranded in Egypt. Bonaparte could not march to India which was his plan-without a fleet behind to supply him. He tried to move up through the Levant [Eastern Mediterranean] but a British naval squadron stopped him at Acre. 'If it had not been for you English, I'd have been Emperor of the East,' he said later. 'But wherever there is water to float a ship we are sure to find you [English] in the way'" (British Empire, vol. 1, p. 274).

One of history's most significant naval engagements occurred in 1805, when British Admiral Lord Nelson virtually annihilated a combined French and Spanish fleet off Cape Trafalgar and captured 20 enemy ships. Although Lord Nelson died in battle, France, Spain and other nations were forced to acknowledge British supremacy over the high seas. British historian James Morris, in his Pax Britannica, writes, "The presence of the sea, at once insulating the Mother Country and linking it with the Empire, gave the British an imperial confidence" (p. 46).

Britain's pride in her supremacy over the seven seas was aptly illustrated by the words of British Admiral St. Vincent: "I do not say the French cannot come. I only say they cannot come by sea."

In the fateful years 1853-1854, American naval power, under Commodore Matthew C. Perry, persuaded the Japanese leaders to crawl out of their isolationist cocoon, thereby opening Japan to the outside world [and Perry's threat was that, if the Japanese did not negotiate with him, they would have to deal with the far more ferocious British, who had recently defeated the Chinese in the "Opium Wars"]. And American sea power later enabled the U.S. to achieve a quick victory over Spain in the Spanish-American War of 1898.

Anglo-American dominance of the high seas was crucial in their victory over the Central Powers in World War I and the Axis Powers in World War II. Even though Germany and Japan seriously challenged the U.S. and Britain on the high seas during World War II, Anglo-American naval strength-aided by Almighty God-finally won out!

A major reason for British-American supremacy on the high seas is something else that was prophesied thousands of years ago. Recall that God told Abraham, "Your descendants shall possess the GATE of their enemies" (Gen. 22:17)! This blessing was reiterated to Israel's mother: "May your offspring gain possession of the gates of their foes" (Gen. 24:60 NRSV). The Anglo-Americans have possessed, over a period of four centuries, most of the major "sea gates"--vital maritime choke points--of the world (see map on this page).

The Greatest Empire in All History!

"It is likely that if a public opinion poll had asked a representative cross-section of Englishmen in the late 1890s whether they would accept the following two propositions--that the British people had a divinely ordained calling to hold and rule an overseas empire, and that they ruled their Empire better than any other European power-the overwhelming majority would have answered 'yes' to both" (British Empire, p. 2,466).

Lord Archibald, British prime minister (1894-1895), made some revealing comments while speaking to students at Glasgow University in November 1900. Referring to the British Empire, he called its construction "human, and not wholly human, for the most heedless and the most cynical must see the finger of the divine... reaching with a ripple of a restless tide over tracts, and islands and continents, until our little Britain woke up to find herself the foster-mother of nations and the source of united empires. Do we not hail in this, less the energy and fortune of a race than the supreme direction of the Almighty?" (p. 2,466).

Just what did God direct Ephraim's descendants to inherit? In its heyday, the enormity of the British Empire was staggering to contemplate. As it was spread out around the entire globe, a popular saying of the time was, "The sun never sets on the British Empire." Just how big was it? "It was the largest empire in the history of the world, comprising nearly a quarter of the land mass of the earth, and a quarter of the population....

"In fact... it continued to grow until 1933, when its area was 13.9 million square miles and its population 493 million.... The Roman Empire in its prime comprised perhaps 120 million people in an area of 2 1/2 million square miles" (Morris, pp. 21, 27, 42). Thus we see that the British Empire was more than five times the size of the Roman Empire, and included within its jurisdiction more than four times the number of subjects!

Was the Empire the result of an intelligent, carefully-thought-out British plan, or was it something which the British stumbled onto-almost in spite of themselves-because they, unknowingly, were being used by God to fulfill His Word, written nearly 4,000 years ago? "It was [British historian] Sir John Seeley who remarked that the Empire had been acquired 'in a fit of absence of mind'" (p. 37).

Morris answers, "Their Empire, hitherto seen as a fairly haphazard accretion of possessions, now appeared to be setting into some gigantic pattern.... They felt their power was self-engendering, that they were riding a wave of DESTINY, sweeping them on to fulfillment.... The acquisition of it all had been a jerky process. Absence of mind it never was, but it had happened so obscurely that to the ordinary Briton the rise of the Empire must have seemed more like some organic movement than the conscious result of national policies. There seemed no deliberation to it. One thing simply led to another" (pp. 22, 42).

He further explains, "Wherever there was [vacant land with a temperate climate]... the British had seized and occupied it, filling in the empty spaces of the world, and setting up their own kind of society wherever they went. Such was, so the romantic idealists thought, the Manifest Destiny of the Empire" (p. 41).

"During Queen Victoria's remarkable reign [the longest in British history, 1837-1901] the empire had grown by more than ten times, from a scatter of disregarded possessions to a quarter of the land mass of the earth, and a third of its population. It had changed the face of the continents with its cities, its railways, its churches, its myriad cantonments, and it had changed the manner of life of entire peoples, stamping its own values upon civilizations from the Cree to the Burmese, besides creating several fully-fledged new nations of its own.

"The powers of the world, envious of the British Empire's splendor, reluctantly acknowledged its supremacy. Even the German Kaiser [Wilhelm II] congratulated his aunt [Queen Victoria] upon her glorious Diamond Jubilee in 1897" (James Morris, Heaven's Command, p. 539). The British Empire was the "forge" or the "crucible" by which the British-controlled territories were transformed into actual separate, completely sovereign "nations" of the Commonwealth.

"Chosen for Service"

James Morris also noted, "It was not merely the right of the British to rule a quarter of the world, so the imperialists thought, it was actually their duty. They were called. They would so distribute across the earth their own methods, principles and liberal traditions that the future of mankind would be reshaped. Justice would be established, miseries relieved, ignorant savages enlightened, all by the agency of British power and money" (Pax Britannica, p. 26).

Many Britons believed that the task of ruling their Empire was a divine assignment, and they took it very seriously. They felt an immense sense of pride in their imperial achievements. "Never since the world began... did any nation assume anything like so much responsibility.... The British had no doubts about the superiority of their civilization and its faith.... 'In the Empire we have found,' George Curzon once magnificently announced, 'not merely the key to glory and wealth, but the call to duty, and the means of service to mankind.'

"Even Joseph Chamberlain [colonial secretary, 1895-1903], who saw the Empire primarily as a profitable estate, declared that British imperial rule could be justified only if it added to the happiness, prosperity, security and peace of the subject peoples-'in carrying out this work of civilization we are fulfilling what I believe to be our national mission.' 'Take up the White Man's Burden!' cried [author Rudyard] Kipling, when the Americans were debating whether or not to acquire the Philippines'" (pp. 45, 122).

A Note About "Anglo-Israelism"
The biblical and historical facts presented in this publication do not support much of what has been known, generally, as "Anglo-Israelism."

1) "Anglo-Israelism," generally speaking, equates the Ten Lost Tribes with the English peoples. However, this brochure has consistently mentioned that the Anglo-Saxon-Celtic peoples of Northwest Europe--not just the English (Anglos)--trace their ancestors' footsteps back to the lands of their captivity in Southwest Asia. Furthermore, this brochure has shown from history that, today, the "Anglos" (i.e. English peoples) only make up, in actual fact, a minority of those Northwest European peoples who now constitute the Ten Lost Tribes.

In North America the Celtic peoples (Scots, Irish, Welsh etc.) are more numerous than the English. Even in northwestern and southwestern England, many people are not descendants of either the Angles or the Saxons, but are of Celtic blood. It is also a fact that many of the British-descended peoples of Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa trace their lineage back to Britain's first permanent inhabitants, the Celts (who immigrated to the British Isles centuries before the time of Christ), rather than tracing their lineage to the Anglo-Saxons, who poured into eastern England in the fifth century A.D.

2) Some who embrace "Anglo-Israelism" look upon many (if not most!) of the Jews as being "Gentiles"--the descendants of Esau, the Canaanites or other non-Israelites such as the Khazars of Russia. But that simply is not true.

In addition, some who believe in Anglo-Israelism wrongly teach that many of the people of southern Ireland are descendants of the ancient Canaanites, who descended from Noah's son Ham. But there is nothing, either in the Bible or in secular history, to indicate this!

3) Many adherents of "Anglo-Israelism" have also believed that the British Empire, in its heyday, constituted the fifth world-ruling kingdom mentioned in the book of Daniel--which is obviously the KINGDOM OF GOD (Dan. 2:31-45; 7:3-28)! However, the Word of God reveals that the British Empire was not God's Kingdom.

The Bible clearly teaches that the Kingdom of God will be made up of spirit-composed, immortal saints (glorified children of God, either by a "resurrection from the dead" or by instantaneous "change"--1 Thess. 4:13-17). The Bible plainly says that "flesh and blood [i.e. mortal humans] cannot inherit the KINGDOM OF GOD; nor does corruption inherit incorruption" (1 Cor. 15:50)!

4) And some who hold "Anglo-Israel" views teach that our Anglo-American peoples can never be conquered. Bible prophecy says otherwise!

Let it, therefore, be made quite clear that the ideas expressed in this brochure do not reflect such "Anglo-Israelite" views as those mentioned above!

Like our ancient father Joseph, the British and American peoples have served as able administrators over other nations (Gen. 27:29). But we Britons and Americans must never forget that God has blessed us, not because of our own innate intelligence, goodness or imagined superiority, but for His own high purpose! We have been chosen by God to fulfill a special purpose in His Great Master Plan (Ex. 19:4-6; Amos 3:2). Dr. Curzon said, "If we dare to use the [expression] 'a chosen people,' all boasting will be excluded if we remember that in the language of true religion 'chosen' means chosen for service, perhaps for suffering, never for favouritism" (Brian Williams, Judgment on Britain, 1966, p. 11)!

Even the military supremacy of Ephraim and Manasseh has been used for service (see box: "Divine Intervention During World War II"). The United States of America emerged from the Second World War as the greatest superpower nation the world has ever seen. Winston Churchill later reflected on the brotherhood his nation shared with its chief ally. Speaking before the House of Commons on October 28, 1947, he said, "I must turn to the United States, with whom our fortunes and interests are intertwined.... The Americans... have become today the greatest state and power in the world, speaking our own language, cherishing our common law, and pursuing... the same ideals."

Paul Kennedy, in The Rise and Fall of Great Powers, pointed out that, at the end of World War II, the U.S. was more powerful in relation to other nations than it has ever been: "America alone, he noted, held the secret to the atomic bomb. It also held two-thirds of the world's gold reserves, half its manufacturing production and half its ships and supplied one-third of the globe's exports" (Los Angeles Times, Aug. 27, 1989).

What incredible power in the hands of a single nation! But how did America use that enormous wealth and influence? To browbeat other nations into submission? No! America set out to rebuild the nations of Europe through the Marshall Plan-including Germany! The U.S. governed Japan for a few years, reconstructed the war-torn country and gave it a new constitution. Germany and Japan are global economic powers today, thanks, in part, to the great generosity of the American people-for which all credit really belongs to God!

"Divine Intervention During World War II"
Remember how God sent Joseph to Egypt before the rest of his family "to preserve life.... and to save [their] lives by a great deliverance" (Gen. 45:5, 7)? The descendants of Joseph were used in a similar way in the 20th century. When the other Israelite nations of Northwest Europe were oppressed by the Nazi jackboot, it was primarily America and Britain--the sons of modern "Joseph"--who freed them. Of course, no one was as sorely afflicted during World War II as the Jews, the children of Judah, who were enduring Hitler's "Final Solution"--the awful, genocidal Holocaust. After a hard, bitter struggle, Joseph's descendants at long last broke through the German lines and came to the rescue of their brother Judah and the other Northwest European nations of Israel. And, even amid the horror of what had happened, there was great weeping and rejoicing at this wonderful deliverance in 1945. At no time has it been more true that "the arms of [Joseph's] hands were made strong by the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob" (Gen. 49:24) than during the Second World War. Were it not for the many instances of divine intervention in that conflict, the Axis Powers could have emerged victorious, plunging the entire world into a new "Dark Age."

In the "Miracle of Dunkirk" (May 26-June 4, 1940) the trapped Allies could easily have been destroyed by Hitler's army as they attempted to evacuate across the English Channel. But, inexplicably, unusual weather closed in. An extremely thick fog blanketed the area and the usually rough water of the Channel became so calm that even the smallest boats could sail on it without risk of capsizing. The fog grounded the Nazi airplanes which couldn't effectively see their targets to bomb them--and Hitler gave a strange order for his tanks to halt their advance. So a motley flotilla of about 1,000 boats of every size and description evacuated over 338,000 Allied troops from the beaches at Dunkirk. Hitler's strange order and the God-sent weather saved the day. Many among the Allies considered their escape from Dunkirk an instance of divine intervention! As Churchill later said, "Wars are not won by evacuations, but there was a victory inside this DELIVERANCE."

The Battle of Britain (June 20-Oct. 31), which soon followed, was decisive in saving Britain from Nazi invasion! Though severely pounded by German bombing, Britain rallied behind Churchill, and the British Royal Air Force eventually won the day against the German Luftwaffe. Britain's Chief Air Marshal, Sir Hugh Dowding, Commander-in-Chief of Fighter Command, gave God the credit: "I say with absolute conviction that I can trace the INTERVENTION OF GOD, not only in the battle itself, but in the events which led up to it, and that if it had not been for this intervention, the battle would have been joined in conditions which, humanly speaking, would have rendered victory impossible!"

In the first battle of El Alamein in July 1942, more than 1,000 Germans surrendered to the Allies due to extreme thirst caused by drinking salt water out of a British-laid pipeline--which, remarkably, would have been empty the day before--or full of fresh water two days later. According to British Major Peter Rainier, "For 1,100 of them [the Germans] to surrender when escape lay open--that was nothing short of a MIRACLE!" ("A Drink That Made History," Reader's Digest). On October 31, 1942, during the final battle of El Alamein, a somber Churchill gave God full credit: "I have a feeling sometimes that some GUIDING HAND has interfered. I have a feeling that we [Britons] have a GUARDIAN."

On D-Day (June 6, 1944), the Allies landed on the beaches of Normandy. Years later, the Supreme Commander of Allied Forces, American General Dwight D. Eisenhower, revealed what an agonizing decision he had been called upon to make when giving the green light to the invasion. He also said, "If there were nothing else in my life to prove the existence of an Almighty and Merciful God, the events of the next twenty-four hours did it!" D-Day was a great success!

Later that same year, American forces in the Pacific fought the powerful Japanese fleet in what became the world's greatest sea battle--the Battle of Leyte Gulf--on October 23-25. "Sprague [the U.S. force's operational commander] was dumbfounded.... He had held his own against a fleet many times his superior.... His success was due, he wrote later, not simply to the tactics he had adopted but also to 'the definite partiality of ALMIGHTY GOD'" (The World at War, p. 375). But it would take far more than this victory to defeat the Japanese--who were resolved to hold out to the last man if need be.

The Anglo-Americans--with the help of Jewish scientists fleeing Nazi persecution in Europe--won the frenzied race to build the atomic bomb. And, to avert the possible deaths of millions in a conventional invasion of Japan, President Truman ordered the new super weapon to be used. Churchill said, "We [Anglo-Americans] seemed suddenly to have become possessed of a merciful abridgment of the slaughter in the East and of a far happier prospect in Europe. I have no doubt that these thoughts were present in the minds of my American friends. At any rate, there never was a moment's discussion as to whether the atomic bomb should be used or not! To avert a vast, indefinite butchery, to bring the war to an end, to give peace to the world, to lay healing hands upon its tortured peoples by a manifestation of overwhelming power at the cost of a few explosions, seemed, after all our toils and perils, A MIRACLE OF DELIVERANCE" (p. 553)!

In recent years, the Soviet Union has disintegrated as a superpower. American President George Bush explained in his January 28, 1992, "State of the Union" address, "A world once divided into two armed camps now recognizes one sole and preeminent power, the United States of America. And they regard this with no dread. For the world trusts us with power, and the world is right. They trust us to be fair, and restrained. They trust us to be on the side of decency. They trust us to do what's right." These words followed the Persian Gulf War in which the American-led coalition liberated Kuwait from Iraq.

Israel-a Blessing to Other Nations!

Here, then, is the fulfillment of the physical aspect of God's promise to Abraham that "in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed" (Gen. 12:3). Not only would spiritual salvation come through Abraham's descendant, Jesus Christ, but also Abraham's modern descendants would be a great blessing to other nations.

The United States and Britain have spent multiple billions of dollars in providing foreign aid to other countries. Historically, our nations are the ones that have always raced to the rescue of those in need. Untold millions of tons of food and humanitarian supplies have been unloaded on foreign docks bearing such labels as, "From the people of the United States."

Notice the incredible parallel drawn by Royal Society member Sir Oliver Joseph Lodge (1851-1940), a British physics professor and university principal: "We [British], too, are a chosen people. It were blasphemy to deny our BIRTHRIGHT and responsibility. Our destiny in the world is no small one. We are peopling great tracts of the earth and carrying thither our language and our customs. The migration of that primitive tribe from Ur of the Chaldees under the leadership of that splendid old chief, Abram, into the Land of Promise, was an event fraught with stupendous results for the human race." If Lodge only knew how true his words were!

But there is a spiritual side even to this. A British minister, C.H. Spurgeon (1834-1892), once said, "I judge that God has blessed the two great nations of the Anglo-Saxon race--England and the United States--and given them preeminence [so that]... they may spread abroad the knowledge of the glory of God" (Treasury of the Old Testament, vol. 2, p. 145).

How true! The Anglo-American peoples have sent hundreds of millions of Bibles, in virtually every known tongue, into all nations! And it has been primarily through those same peoples that the true Gospel of the Kingdom of God has been preached WORLDWIDE-and must yet be preached and published GLOBALLY (Matt. 24:14; 28:19; Mark 16:15)! Americans and Britons have been chosen NOT for favoritism--but for SERVICE toward the other nations of the world!

Again, God fulfilled His promises in amazing detail. Ishmael's descendants, the Arabs, may have become an empire larger than Rome's, but that pales into insignificance when compared to what became of Isaac's descendants. Ephraim ALONE became the greatest empire in human experience-FIVE TIMES as big as that of the Romans-on which the sun never set! From it emerged a "multitude of nations"! Manasseh became the greatest single nation that has ever existed. Since World War II, it has been the undisputed leader of the free world.

The descendants of these two sons of Joseph came into possession of the most bountiful lands on earth. God gave them the vital sea gates of the world. They rose to military dominance and national prominence as no other nations ever have. They became industrial supergiants. And how did they use their new-found power? As a blessing to other peoples of the globe! And it all happened right on schedule--exactly as prophesied. Can you think of a more amazing proof of a living, intervening God?

Here, then, is Israel-not the tiny Jewish state in the Middle East, (which, incidentally, owes its very existence to the continued support of its Josephite brother, the U.S.A.), but superpower nations sitting astride the geopolitical landscape, controlling world affairs! Here, then, is Israel-not scratching in the dust to grow meager amounts of food to barely survive on, but helping to feed the entire planet from the superabundance of the richest soil imaginable! Here, then, is Israel-not looking elsewhere for new tools, but always leading the world in advancing the cutting edge of technology. And here, then, is Israel-not constantly defending her flag from stronger enemies, but planting her flag on the surface of the moon!

Can there be any doubt that the mighty hand of God has directed all of this? How thankful are we for what God has done? In the next chapter, we will see how well our American and British peoples have fared in living up to their divine calling and purpose-and what is prophesied to happen to them.


and Britain
in Prophecy


The Identity Question


The Rise and Fall of Ancient Israel

A Great Mystery of History

Anglo-American Ethnic Roots

Israel's Post-Captivity Names
The Birthright Finally Realized!

What Is Now Prophesied?



Originally written by Raymond F. McNair and republished in 1996 by the now-defunct Global Church of God.

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