ABOUT THE BRITISH-ISRAEL MESSAGE: A PRIMER
“For thou art an holy people unto the Lord thy God; the Lord thy
chosen thee to be a special people unto himself.” –Deuteronomy
In introducing what to many may be a new religious concept,
perhaps we should say first of all that the British-Israel movement—although
actively and even staunchly Christian—is not a new Church or denomination.
On the contrary, most British-Israel believers are active in a variety of Christian denominations, differing from their fellow-members only in that they have come to see that the British or Celto-Saxon peoples are the continuation of God’s servant people and nation Israel, and that a recognition of this identity and its implications is a matter of vital and urgent importance.
God’s Two Nations: Israel and Judah
We are aware, of course, that many people equate Israel wholly with the
Jews. However, such a sweeping statement is misleading for Bible history
makes it very clear that the Jews trace their descent from the ancient
House of Judah consisting of only TWO of Israel’s twelve tribes: Judah
and Benjamin. This has long been recognized by Jewish scholars, and is
corroborated by the fact that Bible prophecies concerning the two-tribe
House of Judah do not in any way correspond to the Bible’s prophetic
preview of what the ten-tribe House of Israel was to do and become. The
historical background to these two ancient nations or “houses” of Israel
and Judah is the subject of this article.
Both in its history and its prophecies the Bible pictures the House of
Israel as a people and nation separate and distinct from Jewry, and once
this fact is recognized it takes only a little study of the prophetic
descriptions of ten-tribe Israel to see that they are exactly fulfilled
in the history and development of the Celto-Saxon peoples. As this could
not be the result of chance, it follows that the Celto-Saxon and related
peoples must be the modern House of Israel.
Yet the importance of this relationship does not lie in the identitfication
itself but rather in the great and urgent responsibility of which it
entails. God brought the Israel people into being to be His servant people
and, as such, to be the instrument of a Great Purpose which He is working
out in human history and affairs. Being Israel, therefore, it is the
Celto-Saxon peoples—Britain, the British dominions, the United States,
Norway, Denmark, the Netherlands and a few other nations—who today constitute
this servant people and who now face the responsibility of carrying out
this Great Purpose.
The ultimate objective of this Purpose is the restoration of man’s life
and world to the perfection of creation, but its more immediate objective
is the establishment of God’s Will as the Law governing all human conduct
and relations, and the bringing into being thereby of that righteous
social order and world government called in the Scriptures the Kingdom
The central figure in this Purpose is God’s own Son, Jesus the Christ,
for not only is He to rule over this world-wide Kingdom as “King of kings
and Lord of lords,” but by His death on the cross He paid the penalty
of human sin and rebellion, thus opening the door to everlasting life
in His Kingdom to all who will accept it of Him.
Nevertheless, by its very nature, such a Purpose requires human co-operation.
If God’s Will is to be obeyed throughtout the earth, someone will have
to teach men its requirements. If the righteousness of His Kingdom and
Laws is to be made known, someone will have to demonstrate it.
So, almost at the beginning of the Bible story, we find it recorded that
God brought into being a new and distinct twelve-tribe people called
Israel, to be His servant and the instrument of His Purpose.
After a period of growth and of slavery in Egypt, God led His people
out of that land in a great migration called the Exodus. This event was
followed by a forty-year period of organization and training in which
He formed tham into a kingdom-nation of which He was King, gave them
a code of laws for the government of their affairs, trained them in the
application of these laws to every phase of human life and conduct—religious,
political, social and economic—settled them in the land of Canaan (Palestine)
and laid on them the great and holy responsibility of demonstrating and
extending the righteousness of His Kingdom and Laws to all men.
Unfortunately, our fathers in Israel of old proved unfaithful to this
great trust. Instead of continuing to govern their life and actions in
accordance with God’s Will and Laws, they gradually turned from them
to follow the evil ways of the heathen nations about them, with the result
that the Kingdom of God ceased to function and the peace and righteousness
which it had provided was replaced by war, invasion, oppression, poverty,
disease and countless other evils.
Eventually the nation broke into two separate and distinct nations:
the TEN-tribe House and Kingdom of ISRAEL, and the TWO-tribe House and
Kingdom of JUDAH, as the Bible tells us in 1 Kings chapter 12.
Following this division conditions grew steadily worse until, as a corrective
punishment, God allowed both of these kingdoms to be conquered and destroyed
by enemies who drove all of the survivors away as captives to distant
lands; Israel was taken to Assyria and Media in four invasions between
732 and 676 B.C., and Judah was taken to Babylon and Persia about a century
later. Modern scholarship affirms that from these captivities very few
of God’s people ever returned.
The small part of the House of Judah which did return continued to live
in Palestine until after the coming of Christ, and it is from this, plus
a number of foreign religious proselytes, that the Jews of today are
As the Bible record shows very clearly that the main body of the Israel
people never returned to Palestine, and as the descendants of those who
did return, the Jews, precludes the possibility of their being the House
of Israel through which God’s Purposes are to be accomplished, some have
supposed that His Plan of using Israel has failed and been discarded.
Unfortunately, many Christian leaders, apparently having little knowledge
of secular history and even less faith in Scripture, have accepted this
God-dishonoring supposition as truth. By teaching that Israel has ceased
to exist, and thus that God’s Plan of using her as the instrument of
His Purpose has failed, they imply that God HAS FAILED.
Yet any honest study of God’s Word will reveal that He foresaw Israel’s
failure, and that His Plan takes this into account and provides for her
redemption and restoration after a long period of exile and correction.
That this exile was to be temporary and corrective only—that Israel would
NOT thereby cease to exist—is definitely stated in Amos 9:9 where
we read: “For lo...I will sift the house of Israel among all nations,
like as corn is sifted in a sieve, yet shall not the least grain fall
upon the earth.”
Further, Scripture declares that God prepared a new home for the Israel
people into which they would be regathered and in which they would dwell
during this exile. Thus in 2 Samuel 7:10 we read: “Moreover,
I will appoint a place for my people Israel, and will plant them, that
they may dwell in a place of their own and move no more...” As this statement
was made while Israel was still in Palestine it follows that the promise
must refer to a future home in some other land.
The Eight Witnesses
Then in Jeremiah 31:35-37 we have this emphatic statement:
“Thus saith the Lord, which giveth the sun for a light by day, and the
ordinances of the moon and of the stars for a light by night, which divideth
the sea when the waves thereof roar; The Lord of hosts is his name: If
those ordinances depart from before me, saith the Lord, then the seed
of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before me for ever. Thus
saith the Lord; if heaven above can be measureed, and the foundations
of the earth searched out benearth, I will also cast off all the seed
of Israel for all that they have done, saith the Lord.”
The SUN, the MOON, and the STARS still shine. The HEAVENS, the EARTH
and the SEAS are still visible realities, and we are still having DAY
and NIGHT in their regular order. Therefore, as God has declared that
Israel is to continue as a people and nation as long as these EIGHT WITNESSES
remain, it follows that Israel must still be in existence as a peole
and nation today.
Further, we should not overlook God’s promise of the everlasting continuance
of the Royal House and Throne of David.
When first organized, the government of the Israel nation was headed
by men called Judges whom God chose for that office. Most of these were
administrators rather than warriors, and as time went on the people began
to clamor for a king who could lead them into battle against their enemies.
Though this was a rebellion against the Rule of God Who was and Is the
true King of Israel, nevertheless, He granted their demand and thus the
rule of Israel by Judges gave way to the rule of hereditary Governors
Saul, the man chosen by the people to be their King, proved a failure
and after his death God Himself made the choice, choosing David, a young
man of the tribe of Judah. While not without human weaknesses, David
proved to be a good King, so much so that God promised that his descendants
would continue to reign over Israel FOREVER. Note the promise as recorded
in 2 Samuel 7:16: “And thine house and thy kingdom shall
be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established
Thus, by God’s own promise the House and Throne of David must still be
in existence today and as this Royal House and Throne are an integral
part of the Israel of prophecy, it follows that Israel must also be in
Seven Identifications of Modern Israel
In thinking of this we should also consider the words of the Archangel
who came to announce the coming birth of the Saviour, as recorded in Luke
1:30-33: “And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary...thou
shalt conceive ...and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name Jesus.
He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the
Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall
reign over the house of Jacob (Israel) for ever.”
Here again we have proof of the existence of Israel and the Throne of David today, for how can Jesus reign from a Throne and over a people if they no longer exist? Having seen then that the Israel people must still be in existence as a people and nation today, separate and distinct from Jewry, let us now note a few of the many prophetic descriptions of what they were to do and become during their long period of exile. These state very plainly that Israel would:
- Be a NATION (Jer. 31:35-37)
- Be a GREAT nation (Gen. 12:2)
- Have the word GREAT as part of her name (Gen. 12:2)
- Be a people regathered in a NEW home (Amos 9:9; 2 Sam. 7:10)
- Become a NATION and COMPANY OF NATIONS (Gen. 35:11)
- Be a KINGDOM (2 Sam. 7:12-16)
- Have as emblems a LION and an UNICORN (Num. 24:8-9)
These and many similar descriptions point unmistakably to
Britain and the Celto-Saxon peoples. Others may answer to one or two
of these descriptions but only Britain and the Celto-Saxon peoples answer
to them all. A few nations can be called great and a few are kingdoms,
but only Britain has “Great” as part of her name. Only in the settlement
of Britain by many related tribes have we the regathering of a people
in a new home, and only they have become “a nation and a company of nations.”
Further, Britain does have the lion and the unicorn as its national emblem.
These things in themselves prove the Israelitish identification of
the British peoples, but there are many other kinds of evidence available.
In history, archaeology, ethnology, philology, place names, folklore,
Bible time measures and heraldry, there is to be found a great mass of
evidence proving conclusively that after the Israel people were driven
out of Palestine, they broke up into a number of tribes and clans, and
at different times and under many names migrated across and around Europe
to the British Isles and the coast lands of northwest Europe.
Here in accordance with the prophecy of Isaiah 41:1 they
gradually renewed their numbers and strength. Then as foretold in Genesis
28:14, they began to emigrate to new lands, where they developed
into that Nation (the United States) and Company of Nations (the British
and Celto-Saxon peoples) promised to Jacob-Israel in Genesis
35:11. Nevertheless, as stated earlier, the importance of our
relationship to ancient Israel does not lie in the fact of the identity
itself, but in the purpose for which God brought Israel into being and
for which He has preserved us as a people and nation down to the present
That purpose requires us to live and conduct all of our affairs in accordance
with God’s Will, to give a national demonstration of the righteousness
of His Kingdom and Laws, and by teaching and example to make that righteousness
available to all men. This our fathers in Israel of old failed to do.
Instead of continuing to obey God they gradually became disobedient and
rebellious, with the result that the Kingdom of God ceased to function,
and eventually they were conquered and driven out of Palestine by their
Yet even as Israel was falling, God sent His prophets to promise
her everlasting continuance as a people and nation and to tell of a wonderful
time to come in the future when, under the Rule of His own Son, a repentant
and redeemed Israel would be restored to her former postion as His Kingdom-nation
and would then go forward to carry out the Purpose for which He had brought
her into being.
At the time and in the place and manner foretold, God the Son
came into the world to redeem Israel, to reaffirm the promise of the
restoration of His Kingdom and by His sacrificial death, to open the
way to everlasting life in His Kingdom for all who wiill accept it of
Him. Then He rose from the dead and ascended to the Father there to await
the promised time when He is to return to earth to Rule over Israel and
the world from the Throne of David.
This promise of the coming of our Lord and His Kingdom is a matter
of urgent importance to us today. For, although it is true that no one
can know the day or the hour of that great event, there are many reasons
for believing that it is drawing very near.
Among these reasons let us note that the seven times (Lev.
or 2,520-year period of exile to which Israel was sentenced, has now
come to an end, and that the unprecedented events and conditions which
have come upon the world in this generation are identical with those
which our Lord Himself said would come in the generation immediately
preceding His return.
The British-Israel evangel, therefore, is the Good News that the
British and Celto-Saxon peoples and nations are the continuation of God’s
servant people Israel; that our Throne is the Throne of David; and that
we are drawing very near to the time when we are to be restored to our
former position as God’s own Kingdom-nation, and when Jesus the Christ,
our Saviour, Redeemer and Lord is to return to earth to reign over us
from the Throne of David and to usher in that righteous social order
and world government called in the Scriptures the Kingdom of God.
Then is to come that wondrous time of peace and happiness which the prophets
foresaw when, with all things governed in accordance with God’s Commandments
and Laws, man will be forever free of war, oppression, poverty, disease
and all of the other evils which now afflict him.
Yet the very imminence of this great event is in itself an emphatic warning
of the need of preparation, for the consequence of being unready, either
individually or nationally, will be tragic indeed.
Individually, of course, we can be ready only by a recognition
of Jesus, the Christ, as the Son of God and by our acceptance of, and
our unswerving loyalty to Him as our personal Saviour and Lord. Nationally
we can be ready only by a recognition of our Israelitish identity and
a humble and repentant surrender of our whole national life to the Will
and Purpose of God.
The need of this preparation is both great and urgent. May we
respectfully suggest, therefore, that you give it your earnest and prayerful
consideration, for even as it was true when spoken by our Lord, so also
it is true again today: “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God
is at hand: repent ye, and believe...” (Mark 1:15)
[This article by W.H. Bennett is from the booklet, "An Introduction To The British-Israel Evangel", and is availiable in printed tract form for personal evangelism. Order from our bookshop at www.migrations.info]