DOES QUEEN ELIZABETH II SIT ON A THRONE OF
By John D. Keyser
The British-Israelites, represented by The Covenant Publishing
Company in London and Destiny Publishers in Massachusetts, have long
claimed that Queen Elizabeth II. is descended from King David of Israel
and sits on his throne today. Herbert W. Armstrong -- founder of the
Worldwide Church of God -- picked up on this idea in the 1920s and made
it one of the principal doctrines in the Church's theology. Now dropped
by the Worldwide Church of God, the idea remains alive in the Church of
God International and the so-called Philadelphia Church of God.
BUT IS IT TRUE? The truth may be even more remarkable than we
realize!! Is Queen Elizabeth descended from David "the man after God's
own heart"? What are the REAL facts of Irish history?
The Davidic Covenant
First, let us notice a commonly held belief. In the much-circulated
booklet entitled "The United States and Britain in Prophecy," the late
Herbert W. Armstrong makes the following assertions:
David succeeded Saul. David sat on the ETERNAL'S THRONE. David's son
Solomon succeeded him, also sitting on the Eternal's throne. "Then
Solomon sat on THE THRONE OF THE ETERNAL as king instead of David his
father" (I Chron. 29:23; see also II Chron. 9:8).
I wish here to impress another special point. Before Saul, the
Eternal had been King over Israel. These human kings were sitting on the
Eternal's throne. The Eternal -- "Lord" -- is Jesus Christ who was with
the Father before the world was (John 17:5 and 1:1-2, 14). Jesus is both
the "root" AND the "offspring" of David (Rev. 22:16). Since he was the
"root," the throne was His before David was born. David merely sat upon
the Eternal's throne. Secondly, since Jesus was David's lawful fleshly
Son, this same throne shall once more become His right by inheritance,
continuing David's dynasty. And so, when Christ returns to earth,
David's throne will be doubly His right!
Now we come to a seemingly incredible fact -- fantastic -almost
unbelievable, but TRUE! While David was king, God made with him a
perpetual covenant, unconditionally, which God cannot and will not
break! This covenant is even more amazing, and less understood, than the
unconditional covenant with Abraham!
I want you now to plant firmly in mind the specific nature and
character of the covenant the Almighty made with David. For it is a
vital link in the purpose and mission of Christ -- an important KEY to
In II Samuel 23:1, 5, we find: "Now these be the last words of
David....God...hath made with me AN EVERLASTING COVENANT, ordered in all
things, and SURE." In other words, a covenant that shall endure forever
and CANNOT FAIL!
Turn back to the seventh chapter of II Samuel for more specific
details. God gave David this covenant promise at a time when David was
much concerned over the Ark of the Covenant dwelling in a tent. David
wanted to build a great temple at Jerusalem.
"And it came to pass that night, that the word of the Lord came unto
Nathan, saying, Go and tell my servant David, Thus saith the Lord, Shalt
thou build me an house for me to dwell in?...When thy days be fulfilled,
and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after
thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels [Solomon], and I will
establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, AND I WILL
ESTABLISH THE THRONE OF HIS KINGDOM FOR EVER. I will be his father, and
he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the
rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men: But my mercy
shall not depart away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away
before thee. AND THINE HOUSE AND THY KINGDOM SHALL BE ESTABLISHED FOR
EVER before thee: THY THRONE SHALL BE ESTABLISHED FOR EVER" (II Sam.
Armstrong goes on to say:
Notice carefully these points:
1) David's throne was set up and established with Solomon, David's
2) The throne -- David's throne (verse 16) -- was established FOREVER
in Solomon (verse 13). Observe that this nowhere says that when Christ
comes, God will establish it in HIM forever. It says it was to be
established forever IN SOLOMON.
3) What if Solomon, or the children of Israel, disobey? Would that
cancel this covenant? Verses 14-15 plainly say that if they commit
iniquity, God will chasten them WITH THE ROD OF MEN, but will NOT break
this covenant. The throne shall go on forever just the same!
4) Notice particularly, in case of disobedience, God will NOT take
the throne away as He took it from Saul. How did He take it from Saul?
Saul's dynasty ended! No son of Saul ever sat on the throne. But
Solomon's dynasty would not end. The punishment for disobedience would
be chastening at the hands of MEN.
5) Since God did firmly establish this throne with David and with
Solomon, if David's throne ceased from existence, even for the length of
one generation, could we say it had been established FOREVER as God here
Here is the fact as little realized as any in the Bible! Almighty God
made an absolutely binding -- just HOW binding we shall see! -- covenant
with David, UNCONDITIONALLY guaranteeing that there should never be a
single generation from that time forward when there would not be a
descendant of David, in UNBROKEN DYNASTY siting on David's throne,
ruling over children of Israel! It was the promise of a continuous,
unbroken dynasty-- all generations FOREVER -- that was guaranteed.
This is hard to believe! Yet God promised and UNALTERABLY GUARANTEED
just that! There were no conditions. Nothing that would happen could
prevent it. The sins of the people were not to change it. The promise
Determining the Facts!
While this passage from the pen of the late Herbert W. Armstrong is
convincing, it is based on only A FEW verses out of DOZENS that deal
with the covenant between God and David. And, furthermore, the meanings
of some of the words quoted by the author need to be examined in more
To arrive at the truth of God we have to do what Paul admonished the
Bereans to do: "These [the Bereans] were more noble than those in
Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and
SEARCHED THE SCRIPTURES DAILY to find out whether these things were so."
(Acts 17:11). Also, Isaiah tells us that "precept must be upon precept,
precept upon precept, line upon line, line upon line, here a little,
there a little." (Is. 28:10). If we follow these directives, we will
arrive at a completely DIFFERENT conclusion than Herbert W. Armstrong
In What Way Was the Covenant Everlasting?
Armstrong stated that "In II Samuel 23:1, 5, we find: 'Now these be
the LAST WORDS of David....God...hath made with me AN EVERLASTING
COVENANT, ordered in all things, and SURE.' In other words, a covenant
that shall endure FOREVER and CANNOT FAIL!"
What we must realize here is that the "OFFICE" of the kingship over
Israel was promised to David forever -- NOT that someone of David's line
would always fill that "office." Looking at it another way, the "OFFICE"
itself exists forever even if the "office" is vacant from time-to-time!
Christ is King "FOREVER" and DOES fulfill the covenant or "promise"
to David, however, there is no promise whatsoever that DAVID'S RULING
LINE would continue forever -- reigning uninterrupted over the people of
Psalm 89 shows that David's throne -- the office of the King would
endure forever: "And his throne as the sun before Me; it shall be
established forever like the moon, even like the faithful witness in the
sky." (Verses 36-37). Since David fulfilled his end of the agreement,
God honored the covenant and has kept the "office" open, but for the
office to be CONTINUALLY FILLED with someone of David's line a
CONDITIONAL aspect to the covenant was added.
While II Samuel 23:5 shows that God's covenant with David was
"ordered in all things and secure" at the time of David's death, I Kings
2 plainly shows that God's covenant with David's children was thereafter
The Covenant Was Conditional!
And keep the charge of the Lord your God: to walk in His ways, to
keep His statutes, His commandments, His judgments, and His testimonies,
as it is written in the Law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that
you do and wherever you turn; that the Lord may fulfill His word He
spoke CONCERNING ME, saying, 'IF your sons take heed to their way, to
walk before Me in truth with all their heart and with all their soul,'
He said, 'YOU SHALL NOT LACK A MAN ON THE THRONE OF ISRAEL. -- I Kings
In this charge to his son Solomon, David makes it VERY CLEAR that the
covenant is CONDITIONAL -- conditional on the ACTIONS of those who came
after David to sit on the throne of Israel! This CONDITIONAL ASPECT of
God's promise to David is reinforced by many other verses in the Bible:
The Lord has sworn in truth to David; He will not turn from it: "I
will set upon your throne THE FRUIT OF YOUR BODY. IF your sons will keep
My covenant and My testimony which I shall teach them, THEIR SONS ALSO
SHALL SIT UPON YOUR THRONE FOREVERMORE." -- Ps. 132:11-12.
In fact, God fulfilled his promise to David when SOLOMON ascended the
throne of Israel -- "The Lord has sworn in truth to David....'I will set
upon your throne the FRUIT OF YOUR BODY.' " Solomon was the fruit of
David's body! God then says: "IF YOUR SONS will keep My covenant and My
testimony which I shall teach them, THEIR SONS also shall sit upon your
throne forevermore." In other words, if Solomon should keep God's
charge, then HIS SONS would sit upon David's throne forever. As we all
know, Solomon, in his old age, turned from God and listened to the
advice of his many wives. Therefore the covenant was technically broken
-- but not by God!
Now look at I Kings 8:25:
Now Lord, God of Israel, keep for your servant David my father the
PROMISES you made to him when you said, 'You shall never fail to have a
man to sit before me on the throne of Israel, IF ONLY your sons are
careful in all they do to walk before me as you have done!'
Only with an understanding of the CONDITIONAL aspect of God's promise
to David can we make any sense out of Psalm 89 -- which otherwise seems
totally contradictory! In the first part of this Psalm God says: "I have
made a covenant with My chosen, I have sworn to My servant David: 'Your
seed I will establish FOREVER, and build up your throne TO ALL
GENERATIONS.'" (Verses 3-4).
God reinforces this a few verses later by stating: "My mercy I will
keep for him FOREVER, and My covenant shall STAND FIRM with him. His
seed also I will make to ENDURE FOREVER, and his throne as the days of
heaven. If his sons forsake My law and do not walk in My judgments, if
they break My statutes and do not keep My commandments, then I will
visit their transgressions with the rod, and their iniquity with
stripes. Nevertheless in My loving kindness I will not UTTERLY take from
him, nor allow My faithfulness to fail. My covenant I WILL NOT BREAK,
NOR ALTER the word that has gone out of My lips. Once I have sworn by My
holiness; I WILL NOT LIE TO DAVID: his seed shall ENDURE FOR EVER, and
his throne as the sun before Me; it shall be established forever like
the moon, even like the faithful witness in the sky."
You might have noticed in the above that God promised David his "SEED
[DESCEND- ANTS] I will establish FOREVER," "His [David's] SEED also I
will make to endure FOREVER." This, in itself, is very significant! Most
kings at that time in world history had their children, etc., killed by
rival claimants to the throne, and their line exterminated!
Greg Doudna, former Ambassador College student and now with the
Department of Near Eastern Studies at Cornell University, notes:
It might seem such a promise could be made to nearly anyone, and if
that was all it was, it would hardly be significant. It would seem the
promise to David was in having descendants who would BE king, not simply
having descendants WILLING to be king.
However, it was common for rival monarchies to slaughter whole
families and every known living heir, in order to destroy future
claimants. Herod is recorded as executing children at Bethlehem hoping
to remove any descendant of David (Matt 2:16). After overthrowing king
Ahab, Jehu killed Ahab's entire clan (II Kings 10:6-11). For good
measure he then killed most of the extended family of a previous king of
Judah (II Kings 10:12-14).
Doudna presents another example:
Another example of this kind of normal, everyday palace behavior is
found in II Kings 11:1-2, in which the mother of the king whose family
had almost all been wiped out usurped rule herself and slaughtered the
children of her own deceased son. Earlier, in the time of the judges,
Abimelech was briefly made king of a city after slaughtering 69 out of
70 half-brother rival claimants (Judges 9:1-6). (One got away by
Even David himself, who received the promise of an EVERLASTING LINE
OF HEIRS [NOT that his heirs would always SIT on his throne], turned
over every remaining able-bodied male heir of Saul to be slaughtered (II
Sam 21:7-9). The sole exception to whom David showed mercy was a son of
Jonathan who was "crippled in his feet" (II Sam 9:13). Lameness ruled
out coming before the Lord in offering of sacrifices (Lev 21:16-24), and
in the Israelite view, would likewise have ruled out eligibility to be
king (compare II Sam 5:8). -- "Afterword on British-Israelism," pp.
In light of this, it was not a trivial matter for David especially in
the aftermath of his killing all of Saul's line to be promised by God
that HE would always have a descendant ABLE to be king.
Now, in the next part of the Psalm we see the writer, Ethan the
Ezrahite, WISTFULLY looking back into the past and CRYING:
But you have cast off and rejected, You have been furious WITH YOUR
ANOINTED. YOU HAVE RENOUNCED THE COVENANT OF YOUR SERVANT [DAVID]; YOU
HAVE DEFILED HIS CROWN BY CASTING IT TO THE GROUND. You have broken down
all his hedges; You have brought his strongholds to ruin.... YOU HAVE
MADE HIS GLORY CEASE, AND CAST HIS THRONE DOWN TO THE GROUND.
Dr. James Tabor, in his article "The Lord (YHVH) God and His
Messiah," comments on Psalm 89: "The hope and promise of the coming
Davidic Messiah, the great and exalted King of Israel of the LAST DAYS,
develops out of the Babylonian Exile. BY ALL APPEARANCES, as Psalm 89 so
plaintively expresses it, Yehovah had BROKEN HIS COVENANT WITH KING
DAVID. THE LAST KINGS OF JUDAH HAD BEEN TAKEN CAPTIVE AND SLAUGHTERED.
(2 Kings 25). And yet, one by one, the Hebrew prophets begin to speak of
a RESTORATION OF THE DAVIDIC THRONE and the coming of an ideal king, one
they call a Branch or Shoot FROM THE 'STUMP' OF THE ROYAL LINE."
(Published by Genesis 2000, Charlotte, N.C. 1992. P.5).
Continuing Psalm 89, Ethan then asks:
How long, Lord? Will You hide yourself forever? Will your wrath burn
like fire?...LORD, WHERE ARE YOUR FORMER LOVING KINDNESSES, WHICH YOU
SWORE TO DAVID IN YOUR TRUTH?
David met the "conditions" of the covenant, but his CHILDREN did not
-- otherwise Psalm 89 would be contradictory! Ethan reveals that David's
throne was "cast...down to the ground" because the evil actions of
David's descendants caused God to be furious with them. God "renounced
the covenant of [His] servant [David]", interrupting the line of David
filling the "office" that was itself everlasting because David upheld
his end of the agreement.
Now we see that God makes the same covenant or agreement with Solomon
in I Kings 6:11-12: "Then the word of the Lord came to Solomon, saying:
'Concerning this house which you are building, ,IF you walk in My
statutes, execute My judgments, keep all My commandments, and walk in
them, THEN I WILL PERFORM MY WORD WITH YOU, WHICH I SPOKE TO YOUR FATHER
Solomon, in his prayer of dedication for the new Temple, asked God to
keep his promise to David: "You have kept what You promised Your servant
David my father [regarding the Temple]; You have both spoken with Your
mouth and fulfilled it with your hand, as it is this day. Therefore,
Lord God of Israel, now keep what You promised Your servant David my
father, saying, 'YOU SHALL NOT FAIL TO HAVE A MAN SIT BEFORE ME ON THE
THRONE OF ISRAEL, ONLY IF YOUR SONS TAKE HEED TO THEIR WAY, that they
walk before Me as you have walked before Me.' And now I pray, O God of
Israel, LET YOUR WORD COME TRUE, which you have spoken to Your servant
David my father." (I Kings 8: 24-26).
If this isn't PLAIN enough, God repeats it again when He appeared to
Solomon AFTER the dedication of the Temple:
...the Lord appeared to Solomon the second time, as He had appeared
to him at Gibeon. And the Lord said to him: "I have heard your prayer
and your supplication that you have made before Me; I have sanctified
this house which you have built to put My name there FOREVER, and My
eyes and My heart will be there perpetually. Now, IF YOU WALK BEFORE ME
as your father David walked, in integrity of heart and in uprightness,
to do according to all that I have commanded you, AND IF YOU KEEP MY
STATUTES AND MY JUDGMENTS, THEN I WILL ESTABLISH THE THRONE OF YOUR
KINGDOM OVER ISRAEL FOREVER, as I promised David your father, saying,
'You shall not fail to have a man on the throne of Israel.' BUT if you
or your sons at all turn from following Me, and do NOT keep My
commandments and My statutes which I have set before you, but go and
serve other gods and worship them, THEN I WILL CUT OFF [DESTROY] ISRAEL
FROM THE LAND which I have given them; and this house [Temple] which I
have sanctified for My name I will cast out of My sight. Israel will be
a proverb and a byword among all peoples. -- I Kings 9:2-7.
Obviously, if the nation of Israel was cut off and the Temple
destroyed from the land -- so also would the throne be cut off and cast
down. THE PROMISE TO SOLOMON WAS ALSO CONDITIONAL! What further proof do
What About the Levites?
If we turn to Jeremiah 33 we will discover a real ENIGMA! Notice!
For thus says the Lord: 'David shall NEVER LACK a man to sit on the
throne of the house of Israel; NOR SHALL THE PRIESTS, THE LEVITES, LACK
A MAN TO OFFER BURNT OFFERINGS BEFORE ME, to kindle grain offerings AND
TO SACRIFICE CONTINUALLY.' -- Verses 17-18. .
Every student of the Bible knows that for the period of time between
the first and the second temple, and from A.D. 70 to the present, NO
OFFERINGS OR SACRIFICES HAVE BEEN MADE BECAUSE DURING THESE TIMES THE
TEMPLE DID NOT EXIST! How, then, do we interpret these verses in
Greg Doudna was puzzled by these same verses:
I remember the passage in Jeremiah 33:17-26, LINKING TOGETHER the
EVERLASTING THRONE of David with the Levites offering sacrifices, as
having been a question to me in my Big Sandy days. If the promise of the
everlasting rule by the line of David necessitated the throne being
transplanted to Ireland in order to continue, WHY WAS IT NOT THE SAME
WITH THE LEVITES, whose PROMISED ETERNAL SERVICE as priests was likewise
INTERRUPTED? Both promises are said in the SAME BREATH, LINKED TOGETHER
in this passage. It was speculated in classes at Big Sandy that Christ
AT HIS RETURN would indeed restore the Levitical, physical priesthood,
for use by physical people during the millennium who did not yet have
the Holy Spirit, and that as these people turned to Christ spiritually,
the physical sacrifices would decline throughout the millennium. BUT
WHERE WAS THE LEVITICAL, PRIESTLY SERVICE NOW, IN THIS AGE?
The WCG answered this basically in [this way]:...there would always
be Levites AVAILABLE to do Temple service. There are Levites now in
Orthodox Judaism, but there is no temple. IN OTHER WORDS, THE PROMISES
ARE INTERPRETED AS MEANING LEVITES WOULD HAVE DESCENDANTS AND WOULD BE
ABLE TO SERVE AS PRIESTS. -- "Afterword on British-Israelism," note 39,
If the WWCG interpreted this part of the passage in Jeremiah 33 in
this fashion, WHY in the world did they not interpret verse 17 in the
SAME WAY to be consistent and logical? Because it didn't fit in with
Herbert Armstrong's ideas regarding the throne of David!
Returning to Doudna:
David was promised his throne would last forever (II Sam. 7:12-16).
Since it is unthinkable that the biblical promise would fail, logic
impelled the British-Israelites and Herbert Armstrong to the conclusion
that David's descendants are TODAY ruling on the throne of England.
MOST analysts have sought for a solution more in keeping with
historical probability. It is explained that Jer. 33:17-26 shows the
real meaning to be God's covenant would be BROKEN if David "shall not
have a son [ABLE TO] reign on his throne." The same thing is said of the
Levites in the same passage -- there would always be Levites serving as
priests, which is explained to mean ABLE TO serve as priests. In other
words, THE PROMISE TO DAVID WAS THAT HE WOULD HAVE DESCENDANTS ABLE TO
RULE -- as well as have his line result in Jesus Christ, who is destined
to rule forever. -- Ibid, p.131.
A Lamp Before the Eternal
As Solomon grew old he departed from the ways of God and started
catering to the whims of his foreign wives. "Then Solomon built a high
place for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, on the hill that is east of
Jerusalem [Mt. of Olives], and for Molech the abomination of the people
of Ammon. And he did likewise for all his foreign wives, who burned
incense and sacrificed to their gods" (I Kings 11:7-8).
Because of Solomon's apostasy God tore the ten tribes from him and
gave it to Jeroboam his servant. Jeroboam was not even of the line of
Judah, but an Ephraimite! Notice what God told Solomon:
So the Lord became angry with Solomon, because his heart had turned
from the Lord God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice, and had
commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other
gods; but he did not keep what the Lord had commanded. Therefore the
Lord said to Solomon, "BECAUSE YOU HAVE DONE THIS, AND HAVE NOT KEPT MY
COVENANT AND MY STATUTES, WHICH I HAVE COMMANDED YOU, I WILL SURELY TEAR
THE KINGDOM AWAY FROM YOU AND GIVE IT TO YOUR SERVANT. Nevertheless I
will not do it in your days, FOR THE SAKE OF YOUR FATHER DAVID; but I
will tear it out of the hand of your son. However I WILL NOT TEAR AWAY
THE WHOLE KINGDOM, but I will give one tribe to your son FOR THE SAKE OF
MY SERVANT DAVID, and FOR THE SAKE OF JERUSALEM WHICH I HAVE CHOSEN. --
I Kings 11:9-13.
In these verses we can PLAINLY see, once again, how CONDITIONAL God's
promises to Solomon were! In fact, if it wasn't for the covenant God
made with David, God would have stripped the ENTIRE kingdom away from
Also, note that God reserved ONE TRIBE for Solomon's son so "that My
servant David may always have a LAMP before Me in Jerusalem, the city
which I have chosen for Myself, to put My name there." (I Kings 11:36).
The "LAMP" before the eternal in Jerusalem referred to the
descendants of David:
Jehovah God established King David on the throne of Israel, and David
proved to be a wise guide and leader of the nation, UNDER GOD'S
DIRECTION. He was therefore called "the lamp of Israel." (2 Sa 21:17) In
his kingdom covenant with David, Jehovah promised: "Your very throne
will become one firmly established to time indefinite." (2 Sa 7:11-16)
Accordingly, the dynasty, or FAMILY LINE, of rulers from David through
his son Solomon was a "LAMP" to Israel -- 1 Kings 11:36; 15:4; 2 Kings
8:19; 2 Ch 21:7.
When King Zedekiah was dethroned and taken captive to Babylon to die
there, it appeared that "THE LAMP" was extinguished. But Jehovah had not
abandoned his covenant. He merely held ruler-ship on the throne IN
ABEYANCE "until he comes who has the legal right [Christ]." (Eze. 21:27)
Jesus Christ, the Messiah, the "son of David," was heir to that throne
forever. Thus "THE LAMP" of David will never go out. Jesus is therefore
an EVERLASTING LAMP as the one who possesses the Kingdom forever. -- Mt.
1:1; Lu 1:32. -- "Insight On the Scriptures," vol.II. Watchtower Bible
and Tract Society of New York, Inc. Brooklyn, N.Y. P.195.
It should be realized that when Jerusalem was taken by the
Babylonians, God no longer had a "lamp" before Him and David's dynasty
then ceased to exist.
The Three Overturns!
In the "United States and Britain in Prophecy," Armstrong makes the
Now consider a much misunderstood passage of prophecy. If you will
begin reading at the 18th verse of the 21st chapter of Ezekiel, you will
see plainly that the Eternal is here speaking of the captivity of Judah
by the king of Babylon. And, beginning in the 25th verse, He says: "And
thou profane wicked prince of Israel [Zedekiah], whose day is come, when
iniquity shall have an end, thus saith the Lord God; REMOVE THE DIADEM,
AND TAKE OFF THE CROWN [as did happen, through the first half of
Jeremiah's commission]: this [the crown] shall not be the same: EXALT
him that is low, and ABASE him that is high. I will OVERTURN, OVERTURN,
OVERTURN, it: and it shall be no more, until he comes whose right it is;
and I will give it to him."
Let us understand this clearly. "Remove the diadem, and take off the
crown." King Zedekiah, of David's dynasty, had the crown. This says it
is to be removed. IT WAS REMOVED. He died in Babylon; his sons and all
the nobles of Judah were killed.
"This shall not be the same." The diadem is not to cease, but a
change is to take place -- the throne is to be overturned another is to
wear the crown. God's promise to David is not to go by default!
Armstrong continues with his explanation:
"Exalt him that is low, and abase him that is high." Who is "high"?
King Zedekiah of Judah. Now he is to be abased. He is to lose that
crown. Judah has been "high," while Israel has been "low" -- these many
years without a king (Hosea 3:4). The Pharez line has been "high"; the
Zarah line "low".
"I will overturn, overturn, overturn, it: and it shall be no more,
until he comes whose right it is." What was to be overturned? The
diadem, and the throne. Not once -- it is to be overturned THREE TIMES.
Overturning by abasing Zedekiah, the house of Judah, the Pharez line,
and exalting, now, the house of Israel, and one of the Zarah line! The
first of the three overturns was performed as the first half of
"And it shall be no more." Does this mean the throne -- the crown --
is to cease to exist? Not at all! How could it be overturned TWO MORE
TIMES -- that is, TRANSFERRED from one to another, if it ceased to
exist? How, after these three transfers of the crown, could it be given
to Him -- Christ -- whose right it is, at His second coming, if it
ceased altogether to exist? How could he who was "low" now be exalted by
the crown, if that crown was to be no more? No, the meaning is: "It
shall be no more OVERTURNED until the second coming of Christ"! And then
it shall be given to Him!
This is an interesting thesis which, incidentally, Armstrong lifted
-- almost intact -- from the book "Judah's Scepter and Joseph's
Birthright," by J. H. Allen! BUT, HOWEVER, THIS THESIS HAS BEEN
DEVELOPED FROM AN INCORRECT UNDERSTANDING OF EZEKIEL 21! Let Greg Doudna
British-Israel theory bases much of its thinking regarding the throne
of England on Ezek.21: 25-27, in which the Lord says of the crown held
by Zedekiah, the final BABYLONIAN APPOINTED king of Judah, "I overturn,
overturn, overturn, it: and it shall be no more, until he come whose
right it is; and I will give it him" (King James Version). Since
Jeremiah was told he would be "over the nations and over the kingdoms,
to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to
build, and to plant," it was concluded that Jeremiah "built" and
"planted" the throne of David in Ireland, accomplishing the first of the
three overturns (USBP, pp.86-88, 102). The second overturn was from
Ireland to Scotland (c. A.D. 800, K. Kenneth). The third overturn was
from Scotland to England (c. A.D. 1000, James I.). After this, the
theory goes, it will be overturned "no more" until Christ's return, when
he will receive the rule forever in Jerusalem.
However, the word translated "overturn" means, in the Hebrew, "RUIN,"
not "transplant," and this is how it is translated in the Revised
Standard Version and other translations. This prophecy in fact predicts
the same INTERRUPTION IN THE REIGN OF THE THRONE OF DAVID reflected in
Amos 9: 11-12 and Acts 15: 16-18. "Take off the crown...A RUIN, RUIN,
RUIN I WILL MAKE IT; THERE SHALL NOT BE A TRACE OF IT until he comes
whose right it is; and to him will I give it" (Ezekiel 21: 27). --
"Afterword on British-Israelism," footnote 38, p.142.
Other translations render these critical verses in the following
manner: "Now to you, O profane wicked prince of Israel [Zedekiah], whose
day has come, whose iniquity shall end, thus says the Lord God: 'Remove
the turban, and TAKE OFF THE CROWN; nothing shall remain the same. Exalt
the lowly, and abase the exalted. OVERTHROWN, OVERTHROWN, I will make it
[David's throne] OVERTHROWN! IT SHALL BE NO LONGER, until He [Christ]
comes whose right it is, and I will give it to Him." ("New King James
"The New Berkeley Version" translates these same verses in this
fashion: "Thus says the Lord God: Remove the turban, and take off the
crown; change is in process. Let the low be exalted and the lofty
abased. RUIN, RUIN I will make it [David's throne]; only RUIN will
remain; THERE SHALL NOT BE A TRACE LEFT OF IT UNTIL HE [CHRIST] COMES,
whose right it is; to Him will I give it."
Now look at the "Septuagint": "And thou profane wicked prince of
Israel, whose day, even an end, is come in a season of iniquity, thus
saith the Lord; Thou hast taken off the mitre and put on the crown, IT
SHALL NOT HAVE SUCH ANOTHER AFTER IT: thou hast abased that which was
high, and exalted that which was low. INJUSTICE, INJUSTICE, INJUSTICE,
will I make it: woe to it: such shall it be until he comes to whom it
belongs; and I will deliver it to him."
According to "Adam Clarke's Commentary," "the [word] avah, which we
translate overturn, is thrice repeated here [Ezek. 21:27]; to point out,
SAY THE RABBINS [rabbis] the THREE CONQUESTS OF JERUSALEM, in which
Jehoiakim, Jeconiah, and Zedekiah were overthrown." (Vol. III. Note to
verse 27, p. 482).
The biblical picture here is that there is a break or interregnum in
David's Judaic line from the time of Zedekiah's downfall to the return
of Christ. Amos prophesies what will happen when the Messiah returns:
"On that day [at the return of Christ] I will raise up the tabernacle
of David, which has fallen down, and repair its damages; I will raise up
its ruins, and rebuild it as in the days of old; that they may possess
the remnant of Edom, and all the Gentiles who are called by My name,"
says the Lord who does this thing. -- 9: 11-12, "New King James
In the margin of my Bible the word "tabernacle" in verse 11 is
explained as meaning "a figure of a DEPOSED DYNASTY"!
In Acts 15: 16-18 we find this repeated: "After this I will return
and will REBUILD THE TABERNACLE [HOUSE, DYNASTY] OF DAVID which has
fallen down. I will REBUILD ITS RUINS, and I will SET IT UP, so that the
rest of mankind may seek the Lord, even all the Gentiles who are called
by My name, says the Lord who does all these things."
The throne of David has fallen, but will be restored again at the end
of this age -- at the return of Christ. The throne of David in Jerusalem
is temporarily interrupted, NOT transferred to the house of Israel in
exile. The throne of David in Palestine (Jerusalem) is now temporarily
"trampled" and fallen.
Greg Doudna concludes by saying:
The throne of David, then, biblically, is TEMPORARILY FALLEN, for a
reason, but at the end of the time of Gentile dominion, at the day of
the Lord, the time when "all Israel will be saved," the throne of David
will be RESTORED forevermore. This is the view of the prophets, and of
the apostles, and of Paul. -- "Afterword on British-Israelism," p. 131.
We must remember, however, that God's promise in Genesis 49:10 has
NOT been abrogated -- the scepter has not departed from Judah, only from
the line of David. GATHELUS, son of Calcol of the royal house of Judah,
took the Coronation Stone to Spain in the days of Moses; and from there
Heremon took it to Ireland and started a line of kings that has
continued down to this day. Queen Elizabeth II. holds the scepter of
The Tender Twig
Herbert Armstrong, in "The United States and Britain in Prophecy,"
uses the 17th chapter of Ezekiel to try and prove his hypothesis:
The strange truth of the PLANTING and the REBUILDING of David's
throne is revealed in "a riddle and a parable" couched in symbolic
language never understood until this latter day. Yet it stands today so
clearly explained a little child could understand!
It fills the 17th chapter of Ezekiel's prophecy. The whole chapter
should be carefully read. Notice, first, this prophetic message is
addressed NOT to Judah, the Jews, but to the house of Israel. It is a
message to give light to the lost ten-tribed house of Israel in these
First, Ezekiel is told to speak a riddle, and then a parable. The
riddle is found in verses 3 to 10. Then, beginning in verse 11, the
Eternal explains its meaning. "Say now to the rebellious house [God
says, the "rebellious house," being ten-tribed Israel (Ezek.12:9), to
whom Ezekiel is set a prophet (Ezek.2:3; 3:1, etc.)], Know ye not what
these things mean? tell them..." and then the riddle is clearly
Armstrong discusses the great eagle next:
A great eagle came to Lebanon and took the highest branch of the
cedar. This is explained to represent King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon who
came to Jerusalem and took captive the king of Judah. The cropping off
of the cedar's young twigs and carrying them to a land of traffic is
explained to picture the captivity of the king's sons. "He took also of
the seed of the land" means Nebuchadnezzar took also of the people and
the mighty of the land of Judah. He "set it as a willow tree. And it
grew, and became a spreading vine of low statue" means the Jews were
given a covenant whereby, although they were ruled over by the
Chaldeans, they might live in peace and grow. The other "great eagle" is
explained to represent Pharaoh of Egypt.
Thus the riddle covers the first half of Jeremiah's commission. Now
notice what is revealed concerning the second part -- the PLANTING of
David's throne! It comes in the parable, verses 22-24: "Thus saith the
Lord God; I will also take of the highest branch of the high cedar."
From God's own explanation we have learned that the cedar tree
represents the nation of Judah; its highest branch is Judah's king. The
riddle told us Nebuchadnezzar took the highest branch -- the king. The
parable now tells us God -- not Nebuchadnezzar, but God -- will take of
the highest branch. Not the branch, but OF the branch -- of Zedekiah's
children. But Nebuchadnezzar took, and killed, all his SONS.
Armstrong now gives his interpretation of the "tender twig":
God, through his prophet Jeremiah, is now going to take OF this
highest branch and "SET IT" (verse 22). "I will crop off from the top of
his young twigs a TENDER ONE, and will plant it upon an high mountain
and eminent," continues the Almighty! Ah! "A tender young twig"! The
twigs of this highest branch represent the children of King Zedekiah!
Certainly a tender young twig, then, represents a DAUGHTER! "...and will
PLANT it." Could symbolic language say plainer this young Jewish
princess is to become the royal seed for PLANTING again of David's
throne? Where? "...upon an high mountain and eminent," says the Eternal!
A "mountain" in symbol always represents a NATION.
"In the mountain of the highest of Israel will I plant it," answers
the Eternal! David's throne now is to be planted in Israel, after being
thrown down from JUDAH! Could language be plainer? "...and it [the
tender young twig -- the king's daughter] shall bring forth boughs, and
bear fruit, and be a goodly cedar."
Did David's throne cease with Zedekiah? Did God forget His covenant?
No! Compare this language with the passage in Isaiah 37:31-32: "The
remnant that is escaped of the house of Judah shall again take root
downward [be planted], and BEAR FRUIT UPWARD." It was PLANTED in Israel,
who removed from Judah! After this Hebrew princess is "planted" on the
throne, now in Israel, lost from view -- that throne is to BEAR FRUIT.
She is to marry, have children, and her sons are to continue David's
dynasty!--1980 Worldwide Church of God. Pasadena, CA. Pp. 88-89.
While the first part of Armstrong's explanation for Ezekiel 17 is
fairly accurate, the last part (covering verses 22-24) is sheer
invention! Let's go through the chapter and comment on some of the
Verse 3: "And say, Thus saith the Lord God; A great eagle with great
wings, long-winged, full of feathers, which had divers colours came unto
Lebanon, and took the highest branch of the cedar."
Adam Clarke, in his commentary, breaks this verse down as follows: A
great eagle: Nebuchadnezzar. See Jer. xlviii. 40; xlix. 22; Dan. vii. 4.
And see here, ver. 12, where it is so applied. Great wings: Extensive
empire. Long-winged: Rapid in his conquests. Full of feathers: Having
multitudes of subjects. Divers colours: People of various nations. Came
unto Lebanon: Came against Judea. The highest branch: King Jehoiachin he
took captive to Babylon. The cedar: The Jewish state and king.
Verse 4: "He cropped off the top of his young twigs, and carried it
into a land of traffic: he set it in a city of merchants."
Adam Clarke: A land of traffic: Chaldea. A city of merchants:
Babylon; for which this city was the most celebrated of all the cities
of the east. Its situation procured it innumerable advantages; its two
rivers, the Tigris and Euphrates, and the Persian Gulf, gave it
communication with the richest and the most distant nations.
Verse 5: "He took also of the seed of the land, and planted it in a
fruitful field; he placed it by great waters, and set it as a willow
Adam Clarke: The seed of the land: Zedekiah, brother of Jehoiachin.
Planted it in a fruitful field: Made him king of Judea in place of his
brother. Placed it by great waters: Put him under the protection of
Babylon, situated on the confluence of the Tigris and Euphrates. And set
it as a willow tree: Made him dependent on this city of great waters, as
the willow is on humidity.
Verse 6: "And it grew, and became a spreading vine of low stature,
whose branches turned toward him, and the roots thereof were under him:
so it became a vine, and brought forth branches, and shot forth sprigs."
Adam Clarke: A spreading vine of low stature: The Jewish state having
then no height of dominion, it must abide under the wings or branches of
the Chaldean king. Whose branches turned toward him, and the roots --
under him: Zedekiah was wholly dependent on Nebuchadnezzar, both for his
elevation to the throne, and his support on it.
Verse 7: "There was also another great eagle with great wings and
many feathers: and, behold, this vine did bend her roots toward him, and
shot forth her branches toward him, that he might water it by the
furrows of her plantation."
Adam Clarke: Another great eagle: Pharaoh-hophra, or Apries, king of
Egypt. With great wings: Extensive dominion. And many feathers: Numerous
subjects. Did bend her roots: Looked to him for support in her intended
rebellion against Nebuchadnezzar.
Verse 8: "It was planted in a good soil by great waters, that it
might bring forth branches, and that it might bear fruit, that it might
be a goodly vine."
Adam Clarke: It was planted in a good soil: Though he depended on
Babylon, he lived and reigned as Nebuchadnezzar's vice-regent in the
land of Judea.
Verse 9: "Say thou, Thus saith the Lord God; Shall it prosper? shall
he not pull up the roots thereof, and cut off the fruit thereof, that it
wither? it shall wither in all the leaves of her spring, even without
great power, or many people to pluck it up by the roots thereof."
Adam Clarke: Shall it prosper: Shall Zedekiah succeed in casting off
the yoke of the king of Babylon, to whom he had sworn fealty? Shall he
not pull up the roots: Nebuchadnezzar will come and DETHRONE HIM. And
cut off the fruit: The children of Zedekiah. The leaves: All the nobles;
all shall perish with Zedekiah.
Verse 10: "Yea, behold, being planted, shall it prosper? shall it not
utterly wither, when the east wind toucheth it? it shall wither in the
furrows where it grew."
Adam Clarke: Shall -- utterly wither: The regal government shall be
no more restored. ZEDEKIAH SHALL BE THE LAST KING, AND THE MONARCHY
SHALL FINALLY TERMINATE WITH HIM.
Verse 12: "Say now to the rebellious house, Know ye not what these
things mean? tell them, Behold, the king of Babylon is come to
Jerusalem, and hath taken the king thereof, and the princes thereof, and
led them with him to Babylon:"
Adam Clarke: Know ye not what these things mean?: They are explained
in this and the following verses.
Verse 14: "That the kingdom might be base, that it might not lift
itself up, but that by keeping of his covenant it might stand."
Adam Clarke: That the kingdom might be base: Have no political
consequence; and at last sink into a miserable government under
Verse 15: "But he rebelled against him in sending his ambassadors
into Egypt, that they might give him horses and much people. Shall he
prosper? shall he escape that doeth such things? or shall he break the
covenant, and be delivered?"
Adam Clarke: Sending his ambassadors into Egypt: Zedekiah must have
sent his ambassadors into Egypt, between the sixth month of his sixth
year, and the fifth month of his seventh year. Compare chap. viii. 1,
with chap. xx. 1.
Verse 16: "As I live, saith the Lord God, surely in the place where
the king dwelleth that made him king, whose oath he despised, and whose
covenant he brake, even with him in the midst of Babylon he shall die."
Adam Clarke: In the midst of Babylon he shall die: His eyes were put
out; he was carried to Babylon, and never returned.
Verse 18: "Seeing he despised the oath by breaking the covenant,
when, lo, he had given his hand, and hath done all these things, he
shall not escape."
Adam Clarke: Seeing he despised the oath: This God particularly
resents. He had bound himself by oath, in the presence of Jehovah, to be
faithful to the covenant that he made with Nebuchadnezzar, and he took
the first opportunity to break it; therefore he shall not escape.
Verse 21: "And all his fugitives with all his bands shall fall by the
sword, and they that remain shall be scattered toward all winds: and ye
shall know that I the Lord have spoken it."
Adam Clarke: All his fugitives: All who attempted to escape with him,
and all that ran to Egypt, &c., shall fall by the sword.
Now we come to the point where Herbert Armstrong and the
British-Israelites depart radically from a correct understanding of
Verse 22: "Thus saith the Lord God; I will also take of the highest
branch of the high cedar, and will set it; I will crop off from the top
of his young twigs a tender one, and will plant it upon a high mountain
Adam Clarke: I will also take of the highest branch of the high
cedar: I will raise up ANOTHER MONARCHY, which shall come in the LINE OF
DAVID, namely, the MESSIAH; who shall appear as a TENDER PLANT, as to
his incarnation; but he shall be HIGH AND EMINENT; his Church, the royal
city, the highest and purest ever seen on the face of the earth.
That "the highest branch of the high cedar" refers to Christ is made
plain by Isaiah 11:1: "There shall come forth a Rod from the stem of
Jesse, and a BRANCH shall grow out of his roots. The spirit of the Lord
shall rest upon Him...with righteousness He shall judge the poor...."
Notice, now, Jeremiah 23:5-6:
"Behold, the days are coming," says the Lord, "that I will raise to
David a BRANCH of righteousness; a KING SHALL REIGN and prosper, and
execute judgment and righteousness in the earth. In His days Judah will
be saved, and Israel will dwell safely; now this is His name by which He
will be called: THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS."
To say that the "highest branch" represents the king of Judah is
nonsense and untenable biblically!
The "tender one" in verse 22 (that Armstrong claims represents a
"daughter" of Zedekiah) is, in reality, Jesus Christ! Notice: "For He
shall grow up before Him as A TENDER PLANT, and as a root out of dry
ground. he has no form or comeliness; and when we see Him, there is no
beauty that we should desire Him." (Is.53:2).
Armstrong claims that "A 'mountain' in symbol ALWAYS represents a
NATION." This is simply not true. While often a "mountain" in the Bible
does refer to a nation, the "high mountain and eminent" in verse 22 is
MT. ZION -- as all commentaries agree! "Yet I have set My King on MY
HOLY HILL OF ZION." (Ps. 2:6).
Verse 23: "In the mountain of the height of Israel will I plant it:
and it shall bring forth boughs, and bear fruit, and be a goodly cedar:
and under it shall dwell all fowl of every wing; in the shadow of the
branches thereof shall they dwell."
In the mountain of the height of Israel: Christ shall be "planted" in
the Kingdom of God. And bear fruit: Multitudes of people shall be
converted during the Millenium. And under it shall dwell all fowl of
every wing: All the nations of the earth shall receive his Gospel. In
the shadow of the branches thereof shall they dwell: Trust in him alone
for salvation, and be saved in their trusting.
"The mountain of the height of Israel" in this instance obviously
refers to the Kingdom of God that is soon coming -- NOT a nation of
Israel as Armstrong claims! In Ezekiel 20:40 we read: " 'For on MY HOLY
MOUNTAIN, ON THE MOUNTAIN HEIGHT OF ISRAEL,' says the Lord God, 'there
all the house of Israel, all of them in the land, shall serve Me; there
I will accept them, and there I will require your offerings and the
firstfruits of your sacrifices, together with all your holy things.' "
Isaiah 2 also makes this clear:
The word that Isaiah the son of Amos saw concerning Judah and
JERUSALEM. Now it shall come to pass in the latter days that the
mountain of the Lord's house shall be established on the top of the
mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall
flow to it. Many people shall come and say, "Come, and let us go up to
the MOUNTAIN OF THE LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; He will
teach us His ways, and we shall walk in His paths." For OUT OF ZION
shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord FROM JERUSALEM. --
Verse 24: "And all the trees of the field shall know that I the Lord
have brought down the high tree, have exalted the low tree, have dried
up the green tree, and have made the dry tree to flourish: I the Lord
have spoken and have done it."
Adam Clarke: All the trees of the field shall know: All the people of
Israel and of Chaldea. I the Lord have brought down the high tree: Have
DETHRONED JEHOIACHIN. Have exalted the low tree: Put ZEDEKIAH, brother
of Jehoiachin, IN HIS PLACE. Have dried up the green tree: ZEDEKIAH, who
had numerous children, but who were all slain before his eyes at Riblah.
And have made the dry tree to flourish: Have raised up a rod out of the
stem of Jesse, THE FAMILY OF DAVID BEING THEN APPARENTLY DRIED UP AND
EXTINCT. This was the PROMISED MESSIAH[!!] of the increase and
government of whose kingdom and peace there shall be no end; upon the
THRONE OF DAVID, and upon his kingdom, to order and establish it with
judgment and with justice, from henceforth, even for ever.
Some commentaries state that the last part of Ezekiel 17 refers to
the true Davidic king Jeconiah in Babylon being restored to honor, while
the appointed usurper Zedekiah in Judea would be destroyed. However, as
Greg Doudna correctly points out, "the one prophetic parable used to
predict the transfer from Judah to the exiled house of Israel [according
to the British-Israelites and Armstrong] -- the eagles and transfer of
the cedar twig of Ezekiel 17 -- is correctly interpreted by commentators
as referring to the true Davidic king...in Babylon being restored to
honor, while the appointed usurper in Judea would be destroyed -- IT HAS
NOTHING TO DO WITH GOING TO IRELAND."
Once again we see that Herbert Armstrong is at variance with all the
commentaries AND the Word of God when he says that "all the trees of the
field..." are "all the nations of the earth." (USBP, p.90). He goes on
to say that the high tree is Judah and the low tree Israel, and that the
green tree is Judah and the dry tree Israel. This simply is not true!
Brutus and the Trojan Line
Almost all the British-Israelites, at one time or another, have
claimed that the royal house of England is descended from King David of
Israel. An example of this is found in the booklet "Co-Incidences?
Pointers to Our Heritage," by Brigadier G. Wilson: "Our Throne is still
held by a descendant of David's Royal line-- and of his forebear Judah,
fulfilling the scripture 'The sceptre shall not depart from Judah...'
Our Royal House trace their descent back to King David, and through
Pharez to Judah (and also through Zarah, Pharez' twin brother). DETAILS
OF THIS SUCCESSION through Scottish and Irish kings were kept at Windsor
Castle but are now held in the MANUSCRIPT DEPARTMENT OF THE BRITISH
LIBRARY. (MS 43968)." (Pages 3-4).
In an amazing about-face THIS SAME PUBLICATION makes the following
incredible statement in the Appendix:
In Section 2 [above statement on pages 3-4] it should be made clear
that DAVID IS NOT MENTIONED IN MS 43968 (now kept in the British
Library, manuscript section). This particular chart gives the descent
from ADAM THROUGH BRUTUS. Charts published by the Covenant Publishing
Co. Ltd. by Rev. W.M.H. Milner entitled 'The Royal House of Britain' and
by M. H. Gayer entitled 'The Heritage of the Anglo Saxon Race' both
trace the ancestry of the Royal House through several lines of descent
from the Patriarch Judah including BRUTUS who is shown as a descendant
of Judah's son Zarah. Tradition places descendants of Zarah in many
places including TROY, SPAIN and IRELAND. The Royal Line from David and
Solomon is detailed in the Bible as descended from Zarah's twin brother
Pharez (Gen. 38). THIS LINE APPEARED TO END WITH THE DEATH OF THE LAST
KING ZEDEKIAH AND HIS SONS AT THE HANDS OF THE BABYLONIAN KING
NEBUCHADNEZZAR (Jer. 52).
What sort of double-talk is this? If the reader of this booklet
failed to check the Appendix, he would be under the impression that the
British royal family is descended from David, and that Manuscript 43968
in the British Library proves it! Unfortunately, a large number of
British-Israelite publications use this dishonest subterfuge to fool the
History records that Edward I. of England used to boast of his
descent from the TROJANS who arrived in Britain under the leadership of
BRUTUS. Now is it just possible that this line, descended from DARDA the
brother of CALCOL (grandson of Judah), brought the DAVIDIC LINE to
Britain? Some have thought so. In order to do this, Brutus would have
had to migrate with his Trojans AFTER the time of David! When did Brutus
arrive in Britain?
According to author E. Raymond Capt:
The descendants of DARDA (Dardannes or Danaans) ruled ancient TROY
for several hundred years, until the city was destroyed in the famous
"Siege of Troy." AENEAS, the last of the ROYAL BLOOD, (Zarah-Judah)
collected the remnants of his nation and traveled with them to ITALY.
There he married the daughter of LATINUS, king of the Latins, and
subsequently founded the great Roman Empire. Aeneas' grandson, BRUTUS,
with a large party of the TROJANS migrated to "the GREAT WHITE ISLAND"
(an early name for BRITAIN due to its chalk cliffs). Tradition says that
on the way to the "white island" Brutus came across four other Trojan
colonies upon the coast of SPAIN and persuaded them to join him.
At TOTNES on the RIVER DART, twelve miles inland from TORBAY (the
oldest seaport in South Devon) is an historical stone that commemorates
the COMING OF BRUTUS TO BRITAIN. (CIR, 1103 B.C.) The stone is known as
the "Brutus stone," the tradition being that the TROJAN PRINCE set foot
upon it when he first landed. The Welsh records state that three tribes
of his countrymen received Brutus and his company as BRETHREN and
proclaimed Brutus king at a national convention of the whole island. His
THREE SONS, born after his arrival in Britain were named after the three
tribes -- Locrinus, Camber, and Alban. BRUTUS' NAME HEADS THE ROLL IN
ALL THE GENEALOGIES OF THE BRITISH KINGS, preserved as faithfully as
were those of the kings of Israel and Judah. --
"Missing Links Discovered in Assyrian Tablets. Artisan Sales," Thousand
Oaks, CA. 1985. Pp. 65-66.
In the booklet "How Israel Came to Britain," published by the
Canadian British Israel Association, we read the following: "Another
[group of Israelites], under the leadership of DARDANUS, a brother of
CALCOL, crossed to Asia Minor to found the Kingdom later known as TROY.
When Troy was destroyed by the Greeks, the Trojans fled to Italy and
LATER TO BRITAIN where they established themselves as the Kingdom of
Britain ABOUT THE YEAR 1100 B.C." (Page 2).
Herman L. Hoeh, of Ambassador College in Pasadena, California, pushes
the date of Brutus' arrival in Britain back even further:
In 1181 the Trojans were crushed in the First Trojan War with Greece.
AENEAS, of the ROYAL FAMILY, fled to Italy. A son, BRUTUS, expelled from
Italy returned to the Aegean area and organized the enslaved Trojans,
Lydians and Maeonians. The Greeks were defeated and TROY was recaptured.
With the recapture of Troy IN 1149 [B.C.] the list of Sea Powers of the
Aegean and eastern Mediterranean began. According to the terms of the
treaty with the Greeks BRUTUS MIGRATED, with all who wished to follow
him, via the Mediterranean INTO BRITAIN. With him [Brutus] the
line...continued to RULE ANCIENT BRITAIN, and on occasion vast areas of
the continent. The line of Brutus fell in a fratricidal war in 482. --
"Compendium of World History," vol. I. 1962. Pp. 453-454.
Hoeh then goes on to list the reign of Brutus as being from 1149 to
The Welsh historian Nennius (circa. 796 A.D.) further dates the
arrival of Brutus in the British Isles: "And when BRUTUS had finished
the building of the city [New Troy -- London], and had strengthened it
with walls and castles, he consecrated them and made inflexible laws for
the governance of such as should dwell there peacefully....AT THIS TIME,
BELI THE PRIEST RULED IN JUDEA, AND THE ARK OF THE COVENANT WAS IN
CAPTIVITY TO THE PHILISTINES." (Nennius: "British History and The Welsh
Annals," translated by John Morris).
Since the "Beli the Priest" mentioned by Nennius is obviously ELI the
priest in the first book of Samuel, then this dates Brutus' reign in
Britain as being BEFORE the reign of Saul in Israel. All the references
show that Brutus arrived in Britain BEFORE THE TIME OF DAVID, THEREFORE
BRUTUS COULD NOT BE OF THE DAVIDIC LINE!
What About the Ethiopian line?
If there was any royal line that had the right to claim it was
directly descended from David and Solomon, and also had one of the
longest uninterrupted periods of rulership, it was that of the royal
house of Ethiopia! The last monarch of this African nation -- Haile
Selassie I. -- called himself the "Lion of Judah" and claimed direct
descent from King Solomon of Israel. Was this true?
In II Chronicles 9, we read the famous story of the Queen of Sheba
visiting Solomon in Jerusalem:
Now when the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon, she came to
Jerusalem to test Solomon with hard questions, having a very great
retinue, camels that bore species, gold in abundance, and precious
stones; and when she came to Solomon, she spoke with him about all that
was in her heart. So Solomon answered all her questions; there was
nothing so difficult for Solomon that he could not explain it to her.
And when the queen of Sheba had seen the wisdom of Solomon, the house
that he had built, the food on his table, the seating of his servants,
the service of his waiters and their apparel, his cupbearers and their
apparel, and his entryway by which he went up to the house of the Lord,
there was no more spirit in her...
Now king Solomon gave to the queen of Sheba all she desired, whatever
she asked, much more than she had brought to the king. So she turned and
went to her own country, she and her servants.-- Verses 1-4, 12.
In a parallel account in the Antiquities of the Jews, by Flavius
Josephus, the author states that the queen was monarch of BOTH Ethiopia
AND Egypt! In Matthew 12:42 and Luke 11:31 Jesus called the Queen of
Sheba "the queen of the South." If you carefully read the eleventh
chapter of the book of Daniel, you will find that the king of the SOUTH
is the ruler of BOTH Egypt and Ethiopia. Jesus' comments about the Queen
of Sheba being the "queen of the South" therefore means that she was the
ruler of Ethiopia AND Egypt. Who was this queen whom Solomon so awed
with his wisdom and magnificence?
During the long history of the Egyptian nation there were only THREE
WOMAN PHARAOHS or queens recorded -- Nitocris of the 6th Dynasty,
Scemiophris (Sebeknofru) of the 12th, and Hashepsowe (Hatshepsut) of the
18th. Which one of these could have been the Queen of Sheba?
Immanuel Velikovsky, in his ground-breaking work entitled "Ages in
Chaos," discovered a clue:
There is a detail in the Ethiopian legend [about the Queen of Sheba]
which only by a RARE CHANCE could have been invented. The Ethiopians
call the Queen of the South MAKEDA. The royal name of QUEEN HATSHEPSUT,
mentioned throughout the Punt reliefs, is MAKERA. "Ra" is the divine
name of a god. (Likewise "DA" could be the divine name ADAD or ADA,
which is a part of several scriptural names). The main part of the name
of the Egyptian queen is IDENTICAL with the first two syllables in the
name of the Queen of the South [Sheba]. It was preserved in the
Ethiopian tradition; it did not come from the Scriptures. .Doubleday &
Company, Inc. Garden City, N.Y. 1952. P. 137.
Furthermore, Josephus preserves the NAME of the Queen of Sheba in his
"Antiquities of the Jews":
I suppose also that Herodotus of Halicarnassus, when he said
there were three hundred and thirty kings of Egypt after Menes, who
built Memphis, did therefore not tell us their names, because they were
in common called Pharaohs; for when after their death there was a queen
reigned, HE CALLS HER BY HER NAME NICAULE....I have discovered from my
own books, that after pharaoh, the father-in-law of Solomon, no other
king of Egypt did any longer use that name; and that it was after that
time when the FORE-NAMED QUEEN OF SHEBA [NICAULE] came to Solomon.--
Book VIII, chapter vi, part 2.
Anybody with an understanding of philology (historical and
comparative linguistics) would immediately recognize in the name NICAULE
(NIKAULE in Greek) a form of the Egyptian MAEKAURE -the PRENOMEN OF
This evidence (and other which I don't have room for here) proves
beyond a shadow of a doubt that Queen Hatshepsut of the 18th Dynasty was
the Queen of Sheba who visited Solomon in Jerusalem.
We learn from the Bible that Solomon was not adverse to having
children by foreign women and, according to Ethiopian history, the Queen
of Sheba (Hatshepsut) married King Solomon and produced a son. "The
Ethiopian Royal Chronicles record that Prince MENELIK I. of Ethiopia was
the son of Solomon and the Queen of Sheba. He lived in the palace in
Jerusalem and while being educated by the priests of the Temple he
became a strong believer in Jehovah."
("Armageddon: Appointment with Destiny," by Grant R. Jeffrey. Bantam
Books, 1990. P. 113).
In the September, 1935 issue of the "National Geographic"
magazine, an article appeared recounting this same story. Priests in
different parts of Ethiopia told the author, L. Roberts, that the Queen
of Sheba had visited Solomon in Jerusalem and bore him a child.
According to this article: "Solomon educated the lad in Jerusalem until
he was nineteen years old. The boy then returned to Ethiopia with a
large group of JEWS..." This son of Solomon and Hatshepsut, himself part
Jewish, founded the longest-living monarchy in history when he returned
The descendants of the Jews who accompanied him to Ethiopia formed
the ruling class during the greater part of the country's history, and
are known today as "Falasha" Jews. "The dynasty from Solomon and the
Queen of Sheba [through their son Menelik] ruled continuously until the
twelfth century. The Abyssinian Royal Chronicles record that the Jewish
Ethiopian kingdom was still being ruled by a Falasha Queen Judith about
A.D. 950 and continued for two centuries. For several hundred years
following a Muslim invasion in the twelfth century, the Muslims then
ruled most of Ethiopia. Finally the original Solomonic dynasty was
reestablished in A.D. 1558 by a Jewish king and continued until Emperor
Haile Selassie." ("Armageddon: Appointment with Destiny," pp. 115-116).
When Ethiopia was taken over by a Communist coup in 1974, the royal
line from Solomon and Hatshepsut came to an abrupt end and Emperor Haile
Selassie was imprisoned. He later died and was buried in an unknown
grave. Some of his descendants managed to escape from the country and
are now living in the West. THIS LINE OF DAVID, THE ONLY ONE TO CARRY ON
BEYOND THE DESTRUCTION OF JERUSALEM BY NEBUCHADNEZZAR, IS NOW DEFUNCT
AND "CAST DOWN...TO THE GROUND." This once again shows that God's
promise to David was CONDITIONAL and dependent upon the actions of his
Astonishing New Evidence -- David Visited Ireland!
On the Ordnance Survey maps of Ireland there is an area three miles
north of Tara Hill and one and a half miles from the old Tara castle
called "Dowd's Town" -- literally "DAVID'S TOWN." How did this area
receive its name?
In the 29th chapter of Isaiah are some enigmatic verses that will
take on a NEW MEANING in answer to this question! Notice:
Ah, ARIEL, ARIEL, THE CITY WHERE DAVID EN-CAMPED!
Add ye year to year,
Let the FEASTS come round!
Then I will distress ARIEL,
And there shall be mourning
and moaning...(Jewish trans-lation).
If we go to the Septuagint translation of the Old Testament, these
verses take on even more meaning:
Alas for the city ARIEL, which David BESIEGED. Gather ye fruits year
by year; eat ye, for ye shall eat with Moab. For I will GRIEVOUSLY
AFFLICT ARIEL: and her strength and her wealth shall be mine. And I will
COMPASS THEE ABOUT LIKE DAVID, and will RAISE A MOUND ABOUT THEE, and
SET UP TOWERS round thee. And thy words shall be brought down to the
earth, and thy words shall sink down to the earth, and thy voice shall
be as they that speak out of the earth, and thy voice shall be lowered
to the ground. (Verses 1-4).
Herman L. Hoeh notes that this prophecy refers to the House of
The climax of the prophecy is the time of divine intervention in all
human affairs. But why should the "city where David encamped" symbolize
the center of government of the House of Israel today? It is NOT a
fitting expression for Jerusalem and Mt. Zion, for David did more than
encamp there. He DWELT AND RULED THERE! Notice further the name ARIEL.
Here is a city with the name Ariel. It symbolizes the same people as
does Mt. Zion in prophecy, but it is NOT Mt. Zion. It is only a place
where David ENCAMPED.
Cities in early times often changed names, or were given different
names, due to famous men who restored or rebuilt the sites, or to men
who established the priority of their names in a genealogical line. Take
for example the change of the name of Aegialea to Sicyon in
Greece....Was there at TARA a famous king with the name of Ariel whose
blood line rules today in the British Royal Family? Indeed there was. Of
four sons of Gede the Herimon, only the LINE OF IRIAL (Irish for Ariel)
continued to rule from Tara. His name was as RARE in Irish history as
the name DAVID was in Jewish history!
These scant evidences of history are more than mere coincidence. NO
OTHER PLACE ON EARTH bears the names of Eber, of Dan, of David, of
Ariel. -- "Compendium of World History." Vol. I. Ambassador College,
Pasadena, CA. 1963. Pp. 426-427.
If we study the king lists in the "Annals of the Kingdom of Ireland,"
by the Four Masters, we find that the sixth Milesian king of Ireland was
named IRIAL Faidh. He ruled from 1414 B.C. to 1404 B.C., and was the
first of the Irish kings to FORTIFY AND BUILD EMBANKMENTS around the
city of Tara. He also cleared the plains and built forts throughout the
land. Because of his fame, Tara was named after him for a period of
Obviously then, this city of Ariel was the city of Tara -- the city
which King David besieged! It is no accident that the area three miles
from the hill of Tara in Ireland is known as "David's Town" or the
"Settlement of David."
Now, if we examine the annals of Ireland we find ruling, in Ireland,
AT THE SAME TIME AS KING DAVID OF ISRAEL, a famous king called OLLAMH
FODHLA. In an article entitled Was Ollamh Fodhla King David of Israel?,
I give convincing evidence that this Ollamh Fodhla was none other than
King David of Israel! According to most of the histories the name Ollamh
Fodhla means the "Ollamh" or chief POET of "Fodhla" or Ireland. However,
the word Ollamh -- pronounced "Ollav" -- bears a striking resemblance to
the Hebrew word "olam" which means "forever" or "everlasting." Could not
"Ollamh" Fodhla, then, mean "The Everlasting One of Ireland"? Could this
be a reference to David who was a TYPE of Christ -- the Everlasting One?
Is this just a coincidence?
This Ollamh Fodhla was the most famous king in Irish history; and he
established institutions in the land which brought peace and prosperity
to the people of Ireland. Thomas Moore, in his book "The History of
Ireland," reveals how OUTSTANDING this king was:
Among the numerous kings that, in this dim period of Irish history,
pass like shadows before our eyes, THE ROYAL SAGE, OLLAMH FODHLA, is
almost the ONLY ONE who, from the strong light of tradition thrown round
him, STANDS OUT as being of historical substance and truth. It would
serve to illustrate the nature and extent of the evidence with which the
world is sometimes satisfied, to collect together the various celebrated
names which are received as authentic on the strength of tradition
alone; and FEW, perhaps, could claim a more virtual title to this
privilege than the GREAT LEGISLATOR of the ancient Irish, OLLAMH
FODHLA....(Longman, Brown, Green & Longmans, London. 1846. P. 110.)
In "The Story of the Irish Race" we see how accomplished this king
really was: "The legends indicate that he was a TRUE FATHER to his
people, and an ABLE STATESMAN. He organized the nation for efficiency --
dividing it into cantred, appointing a chief over every cantred, a
brugaid (magistrate) over every territory, and a steward over every
townland. Some traditions say that he established a School of Learning.
And as a CROWNING GLORY he established the celebrated Feis [FEAST] of
Tara, the great triennial Parliament of the chiefs, the nobles, and the
scholars of the nation, which assembled on TARA HILL once every three
years to settle the nation's affairs. This great deliberative assembly,
almost UNIQUE AMONG THE NATIONS in those early ages, and down into
Christian times, reflected not little glory upon ancient Ireland."
(Seumas MacManus. The Devin-Adair Company, N.Y. 1949. P.15.)
This great feast of Tara fell in the FALL of the year and lasted for
SEVEN DAYS! Some of the Irish annals state that the Feast of Tara, as
established by Ollamh Fodhla, was held EVERY YEAR during his reign, and
after his death was reduced to every three years -- finally falling into
disuse. This yearly feast in the fall could only be the Feast of
Does the line of this Ollamh Fodhla (or David) reach down to Queen
Elizabeth today -- uninterrupted and undiluted? Could Queen Elizabeth,
after all, be descended from David by way of the line of Ollamh Fodhla?
After the death of Ollamh Fodhla, four of his sons ruled in
succession over the land; then the throne went to Bearnghal, grandson of
Ollamh Fodhla through his son Gedhe Ollghothach. Gedhe was a warlike
monarch; and there was continual fighting during his rule which led to a
great scarcity of food throughout Ireland. After ruling for twelve years
Bearnghal was slain by his cousin Oilioll (son of Slanoll, the second
reigning son of Ollamh Fodhla) in a CIVIL WAR that was supported by
SIRNA OF THE HOUSE OF HEREMON, who was paving the way for his own
takeover of the throne.
Did the end come to Ollamh Fodhla's line when Oilioll was killed by
this Sirna (son of Dian) in the sixteenth year of his (Oilioll's) reign?
The "Annals of the Kingdom of Ireland" reveal that "It was this Sirna,
son of Dian, that WRESTED the government of Teamhair [Tara] from the
ULTA [line of Ollamh Fodhla]." Of this same event, the Annals of
Clonmacnoise say that "Oilell was king 15 years, and then was slain by
Siorna [Sirna] Mac Deyn (of the SEPT OF HEREMON), who was he that
VIOLENTLY TOOK THE GOVERNMENT OF THE SCEPTRE OF THIS LAND FROM THE SEPT
Some claim that a daughter of Ollamh Fodhla (David) -- or one of his
sons or grandsons -- married into the line of Heremon, thus healing the
breach and making it possible for Queen Elizabeth to be descended from
David. There is NO EVIDENCE of this ever happening, however. In our
article, "Joseph of Arimathea and David's Throne in Britain" we show
WHERE the breach was healed -- write for this exciting information about
the LINE OF JOSEPH in Britain!
Answering the Points
Now that we have examined the FACTS about the throne of David, we can
answer the points laid down by Herbert Armstrong in the beginning of
1) "David's throne was set up and established with Solomon, David's
Comment: True -- no problem here.
2) "The throne -- David's throne -- was established FOREVER in
Solomon. Observe that this nowhere says that when Christ comes, God will
establish it in HIM forever. It says it was to be established forever --
Comment: The word "forever" can mean "long duration," "long time" --
not necessarily forever without end or interruption! Also, the throne or
David's ruling line was cast down to the ground, but not the "office" or
the "job opening," if you will. "....You have made his glory cease, and
cast his throne down to the ground." God's promise to David was that
there would always be someone [a descendant] ABLE to sit on the throne
(fill the office) if God purposed to "rebuild its ruins" and "set it up"
again. However, Amos makes it clear that this would not happen until the
return of Christ. This is an important distinction! The Bible DOES SAY
that when Christ comes, God will RE-establish it in HIM [CHRIST]
forever. In the meantime, there is an INTERREGNUM..
3) "What if Solomon, or the children of Israel, disobey? Would that
cancel this covenant? Verses 14-15 [of II Sam. 7] plainly say that if
they commit iniquity, God will chasten them WITH THE ROD OF MEN, but
will NOT break this covenant. The throne shall go on forever just the
Comment: In Psalm 89 God says, "If his [David's] sons forsake My laws
and do not walk in My judgments, if they break My statutes and do not
keep My commandments, then I will visit their iniquity with stripes.
Nevertheless in My loving kindness I will not UTTERLY take from him, nor
allow My faithfulness to fail." The fact that God said He would not
UTTERLY take away from David indicates that He was going to take
SOMETHING away from David. What was this "something" God was going to
take from him? I Kings 11 explains: "Therefore the Lord said to Solomon,
'Because you have done this, and have not kept My covenant and My
statutes, which I have commanded you. I will surely TEAR THE KINGDOM
AWAY FROM YOU and give it to your servant....However I WILL NOT TEAR
AWAY THE WHOLE KINGDOM, but I will give one tribe to your son FOR THE
SAKE OF MY SERVANT DAVID, and FOR THE SAKE OF JERUSALEM WHICH I HAVE
CHOSEN." (Verses 9-13)
Later, in verse 36, God says, "And to his son I will give one tribe,
that My servant David may always have a LAMP BEFORE ME IN JERUSALEM, the
city which I have chosen for Myself, to put My name there." When King
Zedekiah was dethroned and taken captive to Babylon to die there, THE
LAMP WAS EXTINGUISHED. God, however, did not abandon His covenant with
David -- He merely held rulership on the throne IN ABEYANCE "until he
comes who has the legal right [Christ]." "Jesus Christ, the Messiah, THE
'SON OF DAVID,' was heir to that throne FOREVER. Thus 'THE LAMP' of
David will never go out. Jesus is therefore an EVERLASTING LAMP as the
one who possesses the Kingdom FOREVER."
God certainly DID NOT break the covenant with David because David
kept his end of the agreement until death! This was not true in the case
of Solomon. Solomon fell into apostacy and, as a result, his line was
cast down to the ground. The "office" or the "job" was still open,
remember, but there was no one qualified to fill it in Jerusalem.
Because of God's loving kindness and because of Jerusalem, God did not
carry out the penalty for breaking the covenant until the fall of
Jerusalem to the Babylonians. The throne DID NOT go on forever -- it's
held in ABEYANCE until the return of Christ and therefore still exists
4) "Notice particularly, in case of disobedience, God will NOT take
the throne away as he took it from Saul. How did He take it from Saul?
Saul's dynasty ended! No son of Saul ever sat on the throne. But
Solomon's dynasty would not end. The punishment for disobedience would
be chastening at the hands of MEN."
Comment: We have already covered most of this. God certainly DID take
the throne away from Zedekiah -- a descendant of Solomon through
Rehoboam -- thus ending this line of Solomon. Another line of Solomon,
through his son Menelik (born of his liaison with the Queen of Sheba)
lasted much longer, but still ended with Emperor Haile Selassie in 1974.
One of his sons still lives, however, in Canada.
5) "Since God did firmly establish this throne with David and with
Solomon, if David's throne ceased from existence, EVEN FOR THE LENGTH OF
ONE GENERATION, could we say it had been established FOREVER as God here
Comment: A lack of understanding here! The REALITY of this point is
that the "throne" never "ceased" in one sense -- it was merely
"unoccupied" waiting for Christ to restore it, or "occupy" it.
Interregnums in the reigning line of David did not mean the "office" was
abolished! Read Luke 1:32: "He will be great, and will be called the Son
of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the THRONE OF HIS FATHER
Notice what Greg Doudna reveals:
The scriptural basis for having heirs of David in the BRITISH ISLES
was to remove the perceived difficulty in conventional history of a
descendant of David not ruling on earth, as was believed to be the
everlasting biblical promise. But there are "INTERREGNUMS," as the
Compendium [of World History, by Herman L. Hoeh] calls them, or
instances in which, even by British-Israel theory, an heir of David WAS
NOT REIGNING. For example, a non-Milesian Irishman named Cairbre
Cinnchait, in A.D. 90, led the "Firbolgs" people in a successful revolt
against the Milesian kings' rule and took power. Milesian rule WAS NOT
REESTABLISHED until A.D. 130....
There was a GAP IN TIME between the removal of Zedekiah as last king
of Judah and the time his daughter (or as the Compendium has it, her
Irish son) began to reign in Ireland -- a 26 YEAR GAP according to the
Compendium. Furthermore, there are many instances in which a line of
Milesian kings ruled Ireland DIFFERENT THAN THE LINE OF
"TEA-TEPHI"/HEREMON. From the Compendium, which follows the Ogygia, I
counted a total of 38 NON-HEREMON, AND THEREFORE NON-DAVIDIC, KINGS
ruling Ireland in the period 561 B.C. to A.D. 379, for a cumulative
total of 315 YEARS OF NON-DAVIDIC RULE during the time David's throne
was supposed to be reigning over Israelites.
If these many "gaps" in the years of Davidic rule in Ireland can be
found acceptable, WHY NOT simply allow, for the sake of argument, a
single gap or "interregnum" of some 2500+ years between the fall of
Judah and the coming of Christ to reign as everlasting Davidic king? How
long can an "interregnum" be before it is ruled unacceptable? --
"Afterword on British Israelism," pp.127-128.
How long indeed!! Also, why can't there be interregnums in ANY line
David may have established in different parts of the world?
If we look at the line of Ethiopian kings from Solomon and Sheba, we
run into the same problem -- there were large "gaps" or interregnums.
Grant R. Jeffrey, in his book Armageddon: Appointment with Destiny,
points out that "for SEVERAL HUNDRED YEARS following a Muslim invasion
in the twelfth century, the Muslims then ruled most of Ethiopia. Finally
the original Solomonic dynasty was reestablished in A.D. 1558 by a
Jewish king and continued until Emperor Haile Selassie." (P.116). We
have already noted that there has NOT been a king on the Ethiopian
throne since 1974; so this line, too, FAILS Herbert Armstrong's criteria
that the line of David be in existence FOREVER!
However, if a "healing of the breach" occurred at some time during
the long histories of the British royal houses -- then the line of David
may still exist in the person of the present Queen of England!
The bottom line is, though, that the reign of the Davidic line in
Jerusalem is TEMPORARILY INTERRUPTED. Another line of David, however,
was established in the house of Israel in exile. Nevertheless, the royal
line of Judah (through Zarah) DID go to Ireland (during the time of
Moses) in the person of Heremon, who was the son of Gathelus and the
great-great-grandson of Judahthus fulfilling the prophecy in Genesis
49:10: "The scepter shall NOT depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from
between his feet, until Shiloh comes...."