By Adam Rutherford F.R.G.S., A.M. Inst. T.
ICELAND is one of the most remarkable countries in the World, and the following pages contain the evidence that this little nation has yet a wonderful and honoured part to perform in the great scheme of things, in the near future. It is the author's conviction that this great destiny of Iceland will prove to be a blessing not only to the Icelanders themselves but also to the kindred Scandinavian, Anglo-Saxon and Celtic peoples.
May this little volume be of some service in helping to prepare the Icelandic people to enter into their great inheritance.
ICELAND is unique amongst the nations of the World. As this little country is isolated, being separated from all others by hundreds of miles of ocean, one might have expected the Icelanders to be a backward race, lacking in civilisation and far behind the times, but instead, we find the reverse of this to be true, for Iceland is the most highly cultured nation in the World to-day, as the following facts regarding this remarkable people clearly show:—
1. There is no expenditure on armaments in Iceland, the money being spent on culture instead. Consequently, there is neither army nor navy and there are no fortifications.
2. In proportion to the population, there are more books and .periodicals published in Iceland than in any other country.
3. The poor people speak the language of the country in the same manner as the university professors, hence there are no dialects or slang, and there is less difference between the commonly spoken speech and the written language than exists in other lands.
4. " The Icelandic Language was already moulded into a powerful and flexible instrument of written thought when nobody (in Europe) outside Iceland attempted to write a book except in Latin," and " the love of literature and poetry has been kept alive and unbroken all these centuries." “In the twelfth and thirteenth centuries Iceland produced more vernacular literature than any other nation in Europe and from that time, love of information has been a distinguishing feature of the Icelanders." (Chambers' Encyclopaedia.) The number of poets is proportionately greater than in any other country. “Icelandic literature is in some respects unique in World literature. It is almost as old as the nation that created it and covers a longer period than any other literature in any modern European language. It is recorded in a tongue which has changed so little from that spoken by the settlers a millennium ago, that any child can understand the oldest Icelandic writings almost as easily as if they had been written yesterday. It has always been the property of the common people, who have made no small contribution to it." (Iceland, p. 133, by Thorsteinn Thorsteinsson.)
5. Illiteracy is unknown in Iceland.
6. Not only do the Icelanders accept Christianity, but the Established Church of Iceland is of the very best type, viz., evangelical and tolerant. Iceland is the one country wherein the whole nation voluntarily support the Church and dwell together in Christian unity.
What a record! This surely looks as if Divine Providence has isolated and prepared the Icelandic nation for a special purpose. True, Iceland is a tiny nation, but the Scriptures inform us that the Almighty at times chooses to use " the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty."
The similarity of the position of Iceland to-day in relation to the other nations of Christendom to that of the Tribe of Benjamin amongst the other tribes of Israel in Biblical times is very striking, as will be seen from the following table :—ICELAND
Iceland is the smallest civilised nation, not only in Europe, but in the whole World.
Iceland became inhabited last of the European countries, and is therefore the youngest of them all.
The Icelandic forefathers, as Vikings, also "ravined as a wolf" but in the end, Iceland likewise proved truer to the Faith than any other country. To-day, although there is full religious liberty, almost everybody in Iceland accepts Christianity. "From the first the Icelanders have been an almost homogeneous people as regards church and religion, and religious controversies may be said to be unknown in the country."3
The Icelanders are also very liberty-loving and tolerant in religion. The Established Church of Iceland is the Evangelical Lutheran Church. "The Icelandic Church has always been liberal in her views, even the so-called orthodox branch of it."4 As a result of the great tolerance exercised by this Church, sectarian bodies are extremely few and inconsiderable. The fact that the census of 193o showed that there were only 1,503 people in the whole of Iceland who do not associate themselves with the Established Church, speaks very creditably for the nation.
The oldest known translation of the Scriptures (O.T.) in any living language is that in Icelandic (12th century).
Iceland is pre-eminently the enlightened and cultured nation of Christendom.
1 The Tribe of Benjamin was by far the smallest of all the Twelve Tribes of Israel.
2. Benjamin, the ancestor and federal head of the Benjamites, was the youngest of all Jacob's twelve sons, from whom the respective tribes of Israel originated.1
3. At one time Benjamin " ravined as a wolf ", but in the end, proved to be the tribe truest to the Faith, and all Twelve Apostles of Christ were ultimately chosen from that one Tribe.2TheBenjamites (or Galilaeans, as they were later called) followed the Saviour by the thousand. (It was the Jews of Judaea who rejected Him and had Him crucified.)
4. The Benjamites were liberty- loving and tolerant in religion. It was the most famous Benjamite of all, the great Apostle Paul, who said: "Where the spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty” “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free." (2 Cor. 3,17, Gal. 5,1.)
5. The Benjamites (Galilaeans) were the first to translate and preach the Scriptures in other languages (Acts 2, 8-11).
6. Benjamin was the light-bearer of eke tribes of Israel.
From the foregoing it will be seen that we could appropriately speak of Iceland as the Benjamin of Christendom. As little Benjamin ultimately became the great light-bearer, can it be that little Iceland is destined to become a great light to the nations. The Biblical prophecies indicate that it will be so.
Both Christ and Daniel inform us that the present age is to culminate in a climax of unprecedented trouble upon the nations (Matt. 24, 21, Daniel 12,1). That terrible trouble which will smash to pieces all tyrannical and unjust institutions that oppress humanity (Zephaniah 3,8, James 5,1-4), is to be but the painful transition which will usher in a new and better age, the Golden Age of prophecy. This is repeatedly declared in the Bible. For example, that world-wide trouble and what follows is described in Zephaniah's prophecy just referred to: verse 8 depicts the trouble, but verse 9 following declares, " For then (after the trouble) will I turn to the people a pure language, that they may all call upon the name of the Lord, to serve Him with one consent." Again, Isaiah, chapter 34, gives a vivid picture of the world tribulation, whilst the whole of the next chapter, 35, tells of the glorious time to follow, and is one of the loveliest chapters in the whole Bible.
Isaiah, chapter 24, also portrays the great final cataclysm upon the nations, but shows that there will be one place that will shine forth as a beacon light in that dark night of worldwide trouble, and that the people there will be found worshipping and singing songs of praise to God, for in the middle of that chapter of woe there is interjected these words: "They shall lift up their voice, they shall sing for the majesty of the Lord, they shall cry aloud from the sea. Wherefore glorify ye the Lord in the fires, even the name of the Lord God of Israel in the isles of the sea. From the uttermost part of the earth have we heard songs, even glory to the righteous." (Isaiah, 24,14-16. English Bible.)
Three particulars are given concerning this place from which songs and thanksgiving are to be heard in the midst of a troubled world:—
1. The place is insular, for the songs of praise are stated to rise "from the sea", "from the isles of the sea". The Old Testament of course was written in Hebrew, but the Hebrew word for "sea" and for "west" is the same, namely "yom". As there are no islands of any consequence that are not in the sea, the proper translation evidently is, "isles of the west". The only important islands in the west are the British Isles and Iceland, but the following considerations show that one of these islands in particular is referred to in the first place, and that it will be the people of that island who will ultimately incite the inhabitants of the other isles to sing also.
2. These insular people are described in the prophecy as living amidst fires. In our world the only fires of nature that we know of are volcanoes, and Iceland is the only one of these islands that has active volcanoes. Not only so, but in proportion to its size, Iceland contains more volcanoes than any other country in the world. In modern times, the tremendous outpourings of white- hot lava in Iceland are unexampled anywhere else in the World. As comparatively recently as 1783 the great Laki Craters threw out a lava stream about 45 miles in length and 15 miles in breadth. Stefan Stefánsson in his book on "Iceland" says that this is "by far the greatest on record and ' unparalleled on the Earth in historic times'." So far as is known, this is the biggest fire the World has ever seen since man was upon the Earth. The whole country of Iceland was formed by fire; it owes its existence entirely to volcanic action, and the many geysers and hot springs to be found all over the island are connected with the volcanic fires below. Iceland is known to Europeans as "The Land of Fire."5 Truly, the Icelandic nation has lived amidst fires!
The Hebrew word "urim" translated "fires" in the above quotation from the English Bible also means "lights". The only great natural lights in our world are the Polar Lights (The Northern Lights or Aurora Borealis and the Southern Lights or Aurora Australis) and the only island nation living sufficiently near either Pole to see these lights vividly from all parts of their country is Iceland.
3. The prophecy locates this insular country as being in "the uttermost part of the earth" or as the ancients said, the "ultima thule". The expression was at one time applied in a general way to the far north, but later became localised to Iceland. Sir Richard Burton has written a work of two large volumes entitled Ultima Thule: this work is a description of Iceland, which this author calls "The Canaan of the North". Iceland is certainly at "the uttermost part of the earth", for beyond it there is nothing but the ice-bound Polar Sea. The north coast of Iceland touches the Arctic Circle.
That God has been preparing the Icelandic nation to sing praises to Him at that special time now near at hand, is shewn by the following extract from Chambers' Encyclopaedia (caption "Iceland"; Vol. VI, pp. 61-65):" Iceland has always been and still is rich in song writers, especially of a lyrical and religious tendency." In the seventeenth century the great religious poet, Hallgrimur Pjetursson (1614-1674) was raised up, and ever since that time his beautiful hymns have been sung at family worship in nearly every Icelandic home, and have had a distinctly uplifting influence on the spiritual life of the nation.
When speaking of Iceland, of course we mean not only the island of Iceland but also the small neighbouring islands, such as the Westmann Islands and Grimsey, which are inhabited by Icelanders and form part of the country.
The black clouds of trouble are gathering fast over the nations of Continental Europe and Asia and it is but a short time till the terrible holocaust foretold will be precipitated, but Iceland will be "the bright spot" on Earth, for the Creator has arranged for Iceland to be free from militarism and from religious controversies in order that this little nation may be a Christian example to the great nations of the World. Through the deliverance of Iceland the Almighty will demonstrate to the World His great love and care over a defenceless nation who worship Him in sincerity and truth. Let the Icelandic people therefore cleanse themselves from everything which is known to be displeasing to God in order that they may give the great witness for Him that He desires. O Iceland! what an honour is yours! Let every soul from Kolbeinsey to Geirfuglasker put forth every effort to raise the spiritual life of the Icelandic nation to the highest possible standard.
What a contrast there will be between the happy worship of God in Iceland as voiced in Isaiah 24, 14-16 and the simultaneous shattering of those great materialistic nations of the Continent, as described by the prophet in the same chapter, declaring: "The earth shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall be removed like a cottage; and the transgression thereof shall be heavy upon it ; and it shall fall and not rise again." "The earth mourneth and fadeth away, the world languisheth and fadeth away, the haughty people of earth do languish." “The earth is utterly broken down, the earth is clean dissolved." When this utter collapse of the social earth, which has been based upon material standards, takes place, Iceland will lead the way, by higher, Christian standards, into a new and better age, to be inaugurated by Christ. Then the nations "shall beat their swords into ploughshares and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more " (Micah 4,1-5 Isaiah 2,1-4). But Iceland has already reached that stage, and this is a necessary preliminary if Iceland is to be the "light-bearer" to the nations and the "fore-runner” of the new age.
The more we examine this marvellous matter the more evident it becomes that Iceland is God's "Benjamin" to-day, "Beloved of the Lord!” In fact, on investigation we even find that a large proportion of the Icelanders at the present day are actual descendants of Benjamin of old time. Let us trace the wanderings of Benjamin through the Christian era.
As already mentioned, the Tribe of Benjamin in Christ's day were known as Galileans, because they inhabited Palestine's most northerly province known as Galilee. They were distinct from the Jews of Judaea in the southern part of the country, and were separated from them by the intervening territory of the Samaritans.6 The Benjamites or Galileans, as a people, took practically no part in the crucifixion of Christ. It was the Jews proper, that is, the Tribe of Judah dwelling in Judea who were responsible for that. When, a few days before His crucifixion, Christ said," Your house is left unto you desolate," He was addressing Judaea, not the Benjamites of Galilee: this is completely proved by the fact that several years afterwards the Apostle Paul declared, "Hath God cast away His people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite of the seed of Abraham, of the Tribe of Benjamin. God hath not cast away His people which He foreknew." (Romans 11,1-2.)
At the very time that Judah was cast off from Divine favour, the Benjamites on the other hand, became more highly privileged than any Israelite tribe had ever been before. As mentioned already, all of Christ's twelve disciples were Galileans (Benjamites). It was these and other Benjamite followers who preached the Gospel throughout Europe during the first century of the Christian era. The greatest of all the early authorities on ecclesiastical history, Eusebius, "The Father of Church History," informs us that Benjamites brought Christianity even into the remote British Isles; he says, "The Apostles passed beyond the ocean to the isles called the Britannic Isles." In other words, God bestowed upon Benjamin the high honour of being the Tribe who introduced Christianity to the world and commenced the Gospel Dispensation. How evident it is that the words of Divine disapproval uttered by Jesus referred to Judah only and not to Benjamin.
As the Benjamites lived at the northern extremity of the country, there was considerable emigration through the centuries, as is well known, over the northern frontier, through Syria, into the south-eastern provinces of Asia Minor which lay nearest to Palestine, namely, Cappadocea, Galatia and Cilicia. In fact, it was at Tarsus, the principal city of Cilicia, that the greatest of all Benjamites was born—the Apostle Paul. Finally, during the terrible Roman Wars of the first century emigration greatly increased.
September, A.D. 70 witnessed the complete separation of the Tribe of Benjamin from Judah. The Benjamites had received their "marching orders" beforehand from the Prophet Jeremiah, and again from Christ. When the foretold circumstances came to pass at the Siege of Jerusalem, the Benjamites accordingly obeyed their previously delivered instructions and fled the country.
It should be remembered that the Roman armies came against Jerusalem at the time of the Hebrew Feast of Tabernacles when all the people of the land, both of Judah and Benjamin, were assembled at Jerusalem, which at that time was in Judaea, although at first it was in Benjamin's territory. Centuries before the awful Siege of Jerusalem occurred, the Divine command was given to the Benjamites in the following words: "O ye children of Benjamin, gather yourselves to flee out of the midst of Jerusalem and blow ye the trumpet in Tekoa and set up a sign of fire in Bethhaccarem; for evil appeareth out of the north and great destruction." (Jeremiah 6,1).7 Christ gave the same orders to his followers, but nearly all His followers in the Holy Land were Benjamites (Luke 21,20-24). In fulfilment of this, the historian Josephus tells us that before the real horror of the Siege of Jerusalem began, large numbers were allowed to escape.8 That the Palestinian Christians, i.e., the Benjamites, escaped the Roman siege of Jerusalem is also corroborated by the celebrated Eusebius in his Historia Ecclesiae. On their way to join their fellow Benjamites in Asia Minor, many of those who escaped from the siege stayed for a time at Pella.
When we recall how the Benjamite Galileans believed and followed Jesus in great multitudes, as recorded in the Gospels, it is not surprising to find that W. H. M. Milner, in his work Israel's Wanderings, states:" The Asiatic Christians (of Asia Minor) of the first two centuries were mainly of the Tribe of Benjamin."
Until the third century the Benjamites remained in these provinces in comparative safety. But in A.D. 267, as stated by Professor Max Muller, the Goths from Europe raided Asia Minor, particularly Galatia and Cappadocea, and carried off the Christians as captives to the Danube. This branch of the Goths living in the Danube Valley were known as Dacians. Living in Dacia and intermarrying considerably with the Goths, these Benjamites after a few generations soon became known as Dacians also; so that latterly, the Dacians were a Benjamite-Gothic people. Unfortunately, in course of time in their new environment, in Dacia, they gradually lapsed from the true faith, as they had often done before when they were in their own land of Canaan.
That these Dacians or Benjamite-Goths subsequently moved northward into Scandinavia, and became the progenitors of the Norman and Icelandic Vikings is abundantly proved in historical records. In the tenth century Dudo, who wrote the earliest history of the Normans, plainly says they were Dacians. Also "Duchesne, who collected the Norman Chronicles in the 17th century, states that the Normans were Dacians." Several writers state that William the Conqueror, when leading the Normans into England in A.D. 1066 arrived with a wolf on his banner. The wolf was the ensign of the Tribe of Benjamin from the earliest times; this had its origin in Jacob's words " Benjamin shall ravine as a wolf," addressed to their founder and ancestor, Benjamin. The fact that the Normans came to Britain under the standard of a wolf indicates, first of all that we have traced the track of Benjamites, and secondly, that the Benjamin element was the predominating one in the Norman people.
But when Rolf (Rollo) led his body of Vikings from Norway to the Outer Hebrides of Scotland and thence later to northern France, where they became known as Normans, his brother Jarl-Hrollang at that same time led another party of these same Vikings to Iceland and he with fellow Vikings became the founders of the Icelandic nation, and as the Benjamin element predominated in the Normans, the same is true of those who went to Iceland, for they were the very same race of people.
In Jewett's work on The Normans, the author, after describing the expedition of Rolf to the Scottish Hebrides and thence to France, and the emigration of his brother Turf-Emar and his Vikings to the Orkney Islands, says (pp. 32, 92):" Rolf's brother, who went to Iceland while Rolf came to Normandy . . . established in that storm-bound little country a nation of scholars and record-makers." "This company came in time to be renowned as the beginners of one of the most remarkable republics the World has ever known, with a unique government by its aristocracy, and a natural development of literature unsurpassed in any day. There, where there were no foreign customs to influence or prevent, the Norse nature and genius had their perfect flowering."
When those Vikings who had previously left Norway and settled in the Hebrides of Scotland heard of some of their brother Vikings settling in Iceland, many of them left the Scottish Isles and went to Iceland also. As it was also from these isles that Rolf and his Vikings sailed for that land which was afterwards called Normandy, the Hebrides of Scotland were therefore to a large extent a cradle of both the Norman and Icelandic peoples, hence a cradle of modern Benjamin.
As is well known, the bulk of the Normans crossed over to England at the time of William the Conqueror in the eleventh century. But on arrival in Britain the Normans did not settle down as a body or tribe in one particular district; they gradually scattered themselves over the British Isles, and became English, Scotch, Irish and Welsh. There is now no body of people known as Normans or even representing the Normans under any name whatever, for they have become entirely absorbed into the great British nation.
But in Iceland the matter is altogether different. The Vikings who settled there have not mixed with any other people, or been absorbed into any other race; and no other races have ever settled and remained in Iceland.9 The origin of the Icelandic people is indisputable, for as the well-known Icelander, Dr. Jon Steansson says:" We possess the records and genealogies of many hundreds of the most prominent of these settlers, in the Book of Land-takes (Land-námabók). No other nation possesses so full and detailed records of its beginnings." Iceland is the most isolated country in Europe, and Icelandic intermarriages with other nationalities have been very rare. The present population of Iceland is almost exclusively Icelandic, the number of foreigners being exceedingly few. Consequently, the proportion of Benjamin blood in Icelanders to-day is as high as it was in the veins of the first settlers who came to the island more than a thousand years ago. Even those Vikings of Dacian descent who remained on the Norwegian coasts have now so intermarried with other people of Gothic origin that the Benjamin element can hardly be said to predominate. Iceland is therefore the only nation to-day who can be said to represent Benjamin.
After Iceland, the Benjamin element is next strongest in the population of the four small groups of islands between Iceland and Great Britain, viz., the Faroe Islands, and the Scottish Isles of Shetland, Orkney and Outer Hebrides, and these are doubtless included in the prophecy of Isaiah 24,14'16. These islands are like giant "stepping stones" between Iceland and Scotland and are as a connecting link between the Icelanders and the British. It is worthy of note, too, that until comparatively recently (end of the 18th century) the language spoken in the outlying Scottish island of Foula was neither Gaelic nor English, but Norse, i.e., practically the same as the language of Iceland, which has remained almost unchanged for a thousand years. "Even to-day, where the Scots speech differs from ordinary English in the pronunciation of a word, it is identical with that of Icelandic" (Chambers' Encyclopaedia). While Benjamite blood is thus by no means exclusively confined to Iceland, nevertheless, it is definitely strongest and purest there. Benjamin is therefore centred in Iceland.
Hence it is not surprising to find Biblical prophecy indicating that Iceland has to fulfil the same high and honourable function in the World that Benjamin had in olden time, for the same suitable characteristics persist in the race. Benjamin was the light-bearer and from Isaiah 24, 14-16 (explained above) it is evident that Iceland has a similar mission at the Divinely appointed time. In order that Iceland may rise to her great calling and perform her Divinely bestowed function in the manner most pleasing to God, let us look into the history of Benjamin and take note of God's dealings with the ancient forefathers of Iceland.
The Patriarch Benjamin was the youngest son of Jacob (Israel) and his progeny, the Tribe of Benjamin, was, as we have said, the smallest of all the "Twelve Tribes of Israel." When the Children of Israel came out of Egypt “Judah was His sanctuary, and Israel His dominion" (Psalm 114, 2). Then in the days of the kings, prior to the disruption into two kingdoms, the whole nation was spoken of as "all Israel and Judah," or "the kingdom" and "Judah." Thus right from the beginning, the nation was made up of two component parts (1) the Tribe of Judah, and (2) the Kingdom or Dominion, Israel, which comprised all the other eleven tribes. But when the division came at the end of Solomon's reign, one of the eleven tribes of the "dominion" or "kingdom" was taken from Israel and attached to the Tribe of Judah; thus the split was not into eleven tribes and one tribe as we would naturally have expected, but into ten tribes and two tribes. In 1 Kings 11,31, 36, God states that in allocating ten tribes to Jeroboam, He is not giving him all the Kingdom but is withholding one tribe, and that the reason for this is "that David My servant may have a light alway before Me in Jerusalem, the city which I have chosen Me to put My name there." This one tribe which was detached from Israel and attached to Judah was the Tribe of Benjamin, in whose territory was the city of Jerusalem. So we see that Benjamin was really a Tribe of Israel, but was lent to Judah that the House of David might have a “light" before God in Jerusalem, and this arrangement continued until the time of the Messiah. But Christ" cast off" Judaea, and in consequence the Romans came and scattered the Children of Judah throughout the known world. On the other hand, the Galileans or Children of Benjamin, who had largely become Christian, moved over their borders into Asia Minor, as we have already mentioned, and became separate from Judah once again.
During the time that the people of Benjamin were attached to Judah they were often classified as Jews too, but they were not really Jews, because the term "Jews" is simply a contraction of "Judahites", i.e., descendants of Judah, whereas the Benjamites were not descended from Judah at all, but from Benjamin. The Tribe of Benjamin were never called Jews before they were joined to the Tribe of Judah, and they were never so called again after their separation from Judah. And the other ten tribes of Israel were never called Jews at any period of their history, but they were often called Israelites. So, although every Jew was also an Israelite, every Israelite was not a Jew, just as every Scotsman is a Briton, but every Briton is not a Scotsman.
For nearly four centuries after Benjamin was united to Judah these two tribes constituted an independent kingdom, but at the end of that time they fell into the hands of the Babylonian Empire and remained under the yoke of successive empires right down the centuries into the Christian era. The Lord forewarned His Chosen People if they continued to be lacking in faithfulness He would inflict a punishment upon them, of very long but nevertheless definite duration, termed "Seven Times". This punishment took the form mainly of conquests by and subjection to other nations. It was stated to the entire Israel nation—the whole twelve tribes (Lev. 26,18,21,24, 28). It came into operation upon the Northern Kingdom of Israel (the Ten Tribes) when they came under the Assyrian yoke and were taken captive to Assyria, and it began on the Southern Kingdom of the Two Tribes, Judah and Benjamin, when they were subjugated by the Babylonians.
Now, the point is (and this is an "acid" test), if that Divinely decreed period of time has expired (and we shall presently show that it has), was Iceland liberated from the yoke of other nations at the exact time that Benjamin was due to be liberated according to prophecy? If so, then we are supplied with another independent proof that Iceland is Benjamin. And, incidental to our subject, seeing that the "Seven Times" period on the Tribe of Judah synchronises exactly with that on the Tribe of Benjamin, was Judaea, the country of the Jews, liberated for the Jewish people at the self-same time that Iceland gained its freedom? If so, then we have before us clear evidence that the Jews of to-day are Judah. Let us see.
That great term of punishment, as stated, is "Seven Times"—a cryptic expression which the Bible itself reveals the meaning of. In Revelation 12,14 a certain prophetic period is spoken of as lasting "a time and times and half a time". In verse 6 of the same chapter that same period is stated to be "a thousand two hundred and three score days" (1,260 "days"). In the third verse of the previous chapter (Revelation 11,3) "a thousand two hundred and three score days" is also mentioned, but in the verse that precedes (2) it is referred to as "forty and two months" (42 months) as also in Revelation 13,5. It is obvious, therefore, that 42 months, 1,260 days and "a time, times, and half a time" are synonymous terms, and that "a time, times and half a time" is 3½ prophetic years (1 +2 + =31/2). A "Time" is therefore a prophetic year and has 12 months of 30 days each, i.e., 360 days. This is confirmed by the fact that 42 months equal 1,260 days, and hence i month equals 3o days.10 Since 31/2 Times are 1,26o days, then twice Three and a Half Times, that is, Seven Times must be twice 1,260 days, i.e., 2,520 days. Be it noted, though, that these are not literal days, but prophetic days. How long is a prophetic day? "God is His own interpreter," for in the time-prophecy of days given in the Book of Ezekiel, chapter 4, He informs us that the prophetic scale is a day for a year. He instructs us:" I have appointed thee each day for a year" (Ezek. 4,5,6). Therefore, Seven Times, or 2,520 days, prophetic time, equal 2,520 years, ordinary time.11
Now, Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon invaded the Holy Land in the end of 604 B.C. and returned to Babylon the following year, 603 B.C., annexing the territory of Benjamin and Judah to the Babylonian Empire. Seven Times or 2,520 years after 603 B.C. will bring us to the date when Benjamin and Judah are due to be freed from the yoke of other nations. Now, 2,520 years after 603 B.C. bring us to A.D. 1918,12 and this was the very year that Iceland gained its freedom and became an independent sovereign state—because Iceland is Benjamin. The Dano-Icelandic Act granting this liberty to Iceland was passed in 1918, and came into operation on December 1st of that year.
Similarly, in that same year 1918, the Land of Judaea was released from age-long oppression, the Turks were driven out, and the Jews were given the freedom to re-build their national home there—because the Jews are Judah. Consequently, it was in 1918 that the commission of influential Jews arrived in Palestine and inaugurated the nucleus of the Jewish National Home, and, amongst other things, laid the foundation stone of the great Hebrew University, which has now become the centre of Jewish culture throughout the World.
Although the first Babylonian expedition to Palestine by Nebuchadnezzar took place in 604-603 B.C. at the very beginning of his reign, there were repeated invasions until finally the last remnant of Benjamin and Judah were taken captive to Babylon in 580 B.C., the fifth year after the destruction of Solomon's Temple and Jerusalem, according to Jeremiah and also the historian Josephus. As Seven Times or 2,520 years reckoned from the commencement of this subjugation brought us to A.D. 1918, which witnessed Iceland's liberation, so we would naturally expect that 2,520 years from the completion of the conquest in 580 B.C. would bring us to another important date for Iceland. Applying the Divine measuring rod of Seven Times, we find that 2,520 years from 580 B.C. bring us to A.D. 1941—see diagram on page 24. From the political standpoint, it is interesting to note that the Dano-Icelandic Act of 1918 ("The Magna Carta" of Iceland) provides that after the end of 1940, i.e., on or after 1st January 1941, either country may demand that negotiations be opened up for the further revision of the relationships between Iceland and Denmark. The exact words of the Act (Section VI, paragraph 18) are:‑
"After the expiration of the year 1940 the Rigsdag as well as the Althing may at any time demand the commencement of negotiations respecting the revision of this Act."
As the year 1941 will mark the extreme time-limit of the Seven Times on Benjamin we would naturally expect that at that time Benjamin-Iceland will begin to enter into the fullness of her destiny as Light-Bearer, and that the fulfilment of Isaiah 24,14-16 will begin to come into operation in a more marked degree :
"They shall lift up their voice, they shall sing for the majesty of the Lord, they shall cry aloud from the sea.
Wherefore glorify ye the Lord in the fires (amid the volcanoes, Iceland being known as the Land of Fire), even the name of the Lord God of Israel in the isles of the west (for Iceland is the most westerly insular nation).
From the uttermost part of the earth (ultima thule, i.e. Iceland) have we heard songs, even glory to the righteous"
The great call to the Icelandic nation at the present time, therefore, is a call to repentance and righteousness, in preparation for the sublime destiny that is theirs. Never before in the history of the World has any nation been called upon to play quite such a glorious part as that which will be Iceland's honour in the very near future. The Church of Iceland is already a good example to the World, but let all Iceland unite in assisting their highly respected Bishop and ministers to raise the spirituality of the nation still higher. God has separated Iceland from the nations and preserved them in seclusion for a thousand years for a high and noble purpose, and the Lord will undoubtedly expect a high standard from His people in the Land of the Sagas. 0 Iceland, arise to your high and wonderful calling!
To revert to Benjamin's history—Following the fall of Babylon and the rise of the Medo–Persian Empire, Benjamin and Judah were allowed to return to their own land (which had been taken over by the new empire) and to re-build their Temple at Jerusalem. After the overthrow of the Medo-Persian Empire, Palestine came under the successive rulership of Greece and Rome. It was in the days of the latter that Jesus was born at Bethlehem. Although Jesus was of the House of David of the Tribe of Judah, the people of Judah rejected Him—"He came to His own, and His own received Him not"—they persecuted Him, and had Him crucified. But the Tribe of Benjamin, the Galileans’ as they were then called, received Him gladly, and He spent almost all His life amongst them. (During His boyhood and early manhood, Jesus lived at Nazareth in Galilee—Benjamin's country—and most of His ministry of 3 1/2 years was also spent amongst the Galiheans).
How the "Light" of Benjamin shone in the days of Christ, when all the Twelve Disciples were chosen from the Tribe of Benjamin, and Jesus said to them "Ye are the light of the world"! Truly, Benjamin was the Light-bearer of the Tribes of Israel.
When, at the end of His ministry, Christ disapproved and "cast off" Judah, it was no longer necessary for Benjamin to be "lent" to Judah, hence Divine Providence arranged for Benjamin's separation and migration. As a result, the great cleavage between Judah and Benjamin took place. Many of the Judeans or Jews proper were slain by the Romans, and the remainder were scattered throughout the nations where they have remained all down the age, but the Galileans, or Benjamites, on the other hand, moved across their borders into Asia Minor, whence, as we have already described, they gradually found their way right across Europe to the isles of the north-west, and have finally been kept secluded in the Isle of Iceland in particular, until the present day, but soon to shine forth again as in the days of Christ and Paul, when they sent the rays of light and truth over all Europe.
It will be recalled that Christ, after His resurrection, appeared to all His Apostles gathered together—all Benjamites—and commissioned them to preach the Gospel among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem, and added : " But tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem until ye be endued with power from on high ". And when, in Jerusalem on the Day of Pentecost the Apostles received that power from on high and were able to speak in the various languages, the multitudes of Jews said to one another, "Behold, are not all these which speak Galileans?" (Acts, 2,7).
Although Jerusalem had fallen into the territory of Judaea in Christ's day, it was Benjamin's city and was in the territory of the Tribe of Benjamin when the land was divided and allotted to each Tribe. In Joshua 18,28 Jerusalem is mentioned in Benjamin's inheritance.
Thus the Christian Dispensation or Gospel Age was inaugurated by Benjamites, beginning from Benjamin's capital city. And, very soon, Benjamin, under their modern name of Iceland, will once again send forth light and truth and songs of praise from their present capital city, Reykjavik. Not only is Reykjavik the capital of the country, but it also marks the spot where Ingolf, the first settler, made his home in A.D. 874. Reykjavik is therefore both the birthplace of the Icelandic nation and the heart of her national life. Hence the city of Reykjavik is doubly dear to the hearts of the Icelandic people. Ingolf believed that his gods guided him to the spot where he set up his new home, but a Higher Hand than Ingolf's gods was directing him, for on investigating another aspect of the subject, we find that God in the remote past not only selected the Island of Iceland as the then future home of His Beloved Benjamin, but long ages before man ever set foot on the island, the Almighty prearranged the site where the capital city Reykjavik should be built.
For proof of this we must turn our attention to Egypt for a little while. Benjamin of old, in common with his brothers and his father Jacob had to go to Egypt for a purpose. His great forefather Abraham sojourned in Egypt, Moses also was there, and centuries later the Son of God Himself, Jesus Christ, had to go to Egypt too, so it is not surprising that God has something important there also for His modern Benjamin, Iceland "the Beloved of the Lord."
Most of the ancient pyramids of Egypt are simply huge mausoleums or tombs of the pharaohs, whose mummies have in many cases been found deposited therein. Nearly all the pyramids are but very inferior imitations of the Great Pyramid, which was erected for a very different purpose. The hieroglyphics in the spaces over the King's Chamber, in the Great Pyramid, state that the interior was sealed in the sixteenth year of the reign of Khufu. Now Khufu reigned twenty-three years, therefore the Pyramid was sealed up over seven years before Khufu died, hence his remains were not deposited in it.
Furthermore, the huge Granite Plug, approximately fifteen feet long, which the builders inserted in the Ascending Passage, is tightly wedged therein and it would be an impossibility to slide it either upward or downward, as any engineer will attest.
The Entrance to the Pyramid was blocked by a close-fitting casing stone and the way into the building was unknown for many centuries until, in A.D. 820, Caliph Al Mamoun of Baghdad, son of Harum Al Raschid of Arabian Nights' fame, in the hope of finding treasure, forced a tunnel about 50 yards long through the solid masonry till the junction of the Descending and Ascending Passages happened to be struck. On ransacking the Pyramid's passages and chambers not only did Al Mamoun and his men not discover any treasure of gold, silver or precious stones, but they found no mummy or anything whatever pertaining to the dead.
Furthermore, there are ventilators in the Great Pyramid, but the dead do not require air. No other pyramid in Egypt has ventilators.
The ancient Arabic Akbar Ezzeman MS., which informs us of the Pyramid's age, also tells us something of its purpose. It states that the Pyramid contains "The wisdom and acquirements in the different arts and sciences . . . the sciences of arithmetic and geometry, that they might remain as records for the benefit of those who could afterward comprehend them . . . the positions of the stars and their cycles; together with the history and chronicle of time past (and) of that which is to come."
The Bible speaks of a monument in Egypt that will be a witness to God and identifies it as the Great Pyramid by defining its unique geometric and geographical location. The passage of Scripture in question is Isaiah 19 19-20.
"In that day shall there be an altar to the LORD in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar (Hebrew "matstsebah" = monument) at the border thereof to the LORD. And IT shall be for a sign, and for a witness unto the LORD of Hosts in the land of Egypt."
The word "Altar" primarily referred to a place of sacrifice and hence came to mean a place before which homage is paid or worship offered and when once we realise that the Great Pyramid is the Divine Revelation in stone, that monument indeed becomes to us "an altar unto the LORD."13
According to the Scripture this altar-monument is to be found "in the midst of the land of Egypt" and yet "at the border thereof." Now there is only one spot on the face of the earth that complies with both of those conditions and that spot is the exact place where the Great Pyramid stands. This remarkable position of the Pyramid was first noticed in 1868 by Henry Mitchell, Chief Hydrographer of the United States Coast Survey. The regularity of the general curvature of the coast of the Nile Delta impressed him, and on closer investigation he found it to form an exact quarter-circle, and this naturally led him to ascertain what point marked the centre of that quadrant. To his astonishment he found that centre to be marked by the Great Pyramid, whereupon he exclaimed, "That monument stands in a more important physical situation than any other building erected by man "see accompanying diagram.
The Great Pyramid's two diagonals when produced to the north-west and north-east enclose the Delta "thus embracing the fan-shaped country of Lower Egypt." Built upon the northernmost edge of the Gizeh cliff and looking out over this sector of open-fan-shaped land of Egypt (i.e. the lower of the two kingdoms of Egypt, the one wherein the Israelites sojourned) from its pivotal point, it may be truly said to be at the very border thereof, as well as at its governing centre.14 On this, Prof. C. Piazzi Smyth, Astronomer Royal for Scotland, comments, " Now Lower Egypt being as already described, of a sector, still more exactly than of a Delta shape, it must have its centre, not like a circle in the middle of its surface, but at one extreme corner thereof. Whereupon Mr. Mitchell has acutely remarked that the building which stands at, or just raised above, such a sectorial centre must be at one and the same time both at the border thereof, and yet at its quasi, or practically governing middle. That is to say, just as was to be that grandly honoured prophetic monument, pure and undefiled in its religious bearing, though in the idolatrous Egyptian land, alluded to by Isaiah (chapter 19) for was it not fore-ordained by the Divine Word to be both an altar to the LORD in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar at the border thereof '—an apparent mechanical impossibility, yet realised in the sectorial centre condition of the Great Pyramid."
This unique position is true in regard to political geography also. This Great Pyramid of Gizeh15 was near On (Heliopolis), the ancient capital of Lower Egypt, and equally near to Memphis, the ancient capital of Upper Egypt, while it was even closer still to the border between the Egypts. So the Pyramid was at the political hub and yet at the border of both the ancient Egypts separately, as well as taken as a whole. To-day, it is nearer still to Cairo, the present capital of Egypt and the largest city in the whole of Africa—in fact the Cairo tramcars run out to the Great Pyramid and a fine panoramic view of the city and its environs is obtainable from the top of the monument.
Thus the Great Pyramid is at the very heart of Egypt's political and social life, and yet it is at the very border of the country, for beyond the Pyramid there is nothing but the great Sahara Desert, which extends right across the African continent. To the immediate east of the Pyramid is highly cultivated and densely populated land on which stands the metropolis of Egypt, but to the immediate west of the building is the Great Desert—nothing but sand, sand, sand for many hundreds of miles. So we see that the Great Pyramid is "in the midst of the land of Egypt and yet at the border thereof," both geometrically and geographically.
After thus defining the Pyramid's location, the Scriptures state the purpose of this altar-monument. "And it shall be for a sign and for a witness unto the LORD of Hosts in the land of Egypt."
The Akbar Ezzeman MS., as quoted above, tells us that the Pyramid contains a chronicle of future events, and the Prophet Isaiah states that it would be a witness to God. As those prophecies thus portrayed come to pass at the time predicted, it will certainly prove the genuineness of the Pyramid and render it a witness to the power and foreknowledge of the Divine Architect—"a witness to the LORD."
It is not yet generally known that the Almighty arranged for His great and wonderful plan to be portrayed in symbols of stone long before the Bible was written. Modern discovery and research have revealed the fact that this, the World's most massive edifice, symbolically and by measurement, declares the great Divine Plan of the Ages from the beginning to the consummation. The glory and marvel of it all is that although the Great Pyramid was built more than a thousand years before the first book of the Bible was written, its teachings and prophecies are identical with Scripture. Hence the Great Pyramid has been well named "The Bible in Stone"; it is truth in structural form.
We are living in an age of science. Indeed, so much is this the case that the expression, "Is it scientific?" has become quite proverbial and is applied to all manner of matters, including religion. In the Scriptures, God has promised to give those who trust Him all that is necessary in every time of emergency, in every time of need. In harmony with this, the Almighty, in the remote past, foreseeing the circumstances of this our day and foreknowing that those who reverence Him would be confronted with the query, "Is it scientific?" has prearranged in His great "eternal purpose" to give us a scientific revelation—The Great Pyramid—which includes the scientific demonstration of Bible Truth, and thereby the God of Nature or Science and the God of the Bible are at once proved to be identical, and true science and true religion shown to be in perfect agreement. That mighty monument, the Great Pyramid, displays the Christian religion upon a scientific basis. Although erected at a time when humanity had most crude ideas of this universe and even of our own earth, the Pyramid built under Divine inspiration declares to us with perfect accuracy all the geodetic data which man was not able to ascertain until modern times, after the development of trigonometrical knowledge and the invention of modern appliances. It gives the exact size as well as the precise shape of the Earth and the duration of all the Earth's movements, in addition to the various astronomical statistics, with absolute accuracy in every particular.
Furthermore, not only does the Great Pyramid portray the course of events through the ages, but it even indicates at what particular place or in what countries the fulfilments of an epoch-making nature are due to occur.16 Although in existence more than 2,600 years before the Christian era, the Pyramid points to Bethlehem as the birthplace of the Messiah. In the interior of the Pyramid, the approach to the place where the whole life of Christ on Earth is symbolically and chronologically shown is in the form of an upward passage inclined at an angle of 26° 18' 9.6", known as the Messianic Angle, and a line drawn from the Pyramid at this precise angle to the parallel of latitude on its upward or northern side passes through the ancient city of Bethlehem, and not only so, but right over the place where Jesus was born. (See diagram facing page 30.)
On the walls of the Ascending Passage, above referred to, sockets are cut in the form of indicators, filled with inset stones, and tilted at the Messianic Angle, thus pointing to the Messiah "centre" at the upper end of the passage. There is also a huge indicator cut in the rock just within the southeast corner of the Pyramid's base (This was first discovered in the year 1925 and the author had the privilege of being one concerned in the discovery and excavation of it). This "indicator" trench lies along the S.E.–N.W. diagonal of the Pyramid, close to the south-east socket. When taken from socket to socket, this diagonal is the longest straight line in the whole structure and it rises towards the north-west. The indicator is thus pointing to some definite place in the north-west in the exact line of the Pyramid's great diagonal. When produced, this diagonal first of all skirts the western side of the Delta of the Nile. Producing it still further, it crosses the Mediterranean Sea and the Continent of Europe, but remarkable to say, it does not go across any great country, but only skirts the frontiers of the great nations, Italy, France, Germany and it does not touch any town of importance or any place of special significance. Producing still further, it traverses the narrow neck of the North Sea and then goes right through the very heart of Great Britain (the significance of this is explained in the author's larger work Israel-Britain). It enters Britain on the coast of East Anglia and emerges at the Hebrides (Cradle of modern Benjamin) but still does not pass through any place of outstanding significance. Continuing the line across the northern Atlantic Ocean, it strikes the Land of the Sagas and is then directed on Reykjavik, the "birthplace" and capital of Iceland—the hub and centre of Benjamin's national life.17 (See diagram facing page 30.)
Twice every year, viz., in the beginning of February and the beginning of November (before the exterior of the Pyramid was vandalised) the track of the Pyramid-Reykjavik Line was illuminated by a brilliant vertical beam of light, extending outward from the Pyramid north-west for a distance of several miles as a luminous indicator and visible over almost the whole of ancient Egypt. This illuminated by a brilliant vertical beam of light, extending outward from the Pyramid north-west for a distance of several miles as a luminous indicator and visible over almost the whole of ancient Egypt. This was caused by the noon reflection of the sun's rays from the then very smooth and highly polished surfaces of the Pyramid's sides, each of which was about 5½ acres in area—gigantic mirrors indeed! Hence in the ancient Egyptian language, the Great Pyramid was called Khuti, which means the Lights.18 This mighty illuminated indicator pointed to a spot in the far north-west. The geometric focus spot "of the Lights was in Iceland, where, thousands of years later, Ingolf settled and Reykjavik was built. Reykjavik is to be the dynamic centre from which the Divine light and influence will radiate during the fast approaching crisis of the world-wide "time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation". O happy Iceland, and thrice happy Reykjavik!
The Prophet Isaiah foretold that the Great Pyramid, God's monumental witness in Egypt, would "speak" in the day of great oppression. Both the Biblical prophecies and the Pyramid point to Iceland as "the bright spot" on Earth during that time of "distress of nations with perplexity". Let the Icelandic nation consecrate itself to God. Let all the inhabitants of Iceland prepare. O Iceland! Meditate upon the Scriptures, and imbibe the spirit of Christ, for great is your opportunity, your privilege and your honour. "Blessed is the nation that keepeth the truth". "Righteousness exalteth a nation ".
In Genesis 17, 4 there is recorded the Divine promise that Abraham would be the father of many nations. Iceland has the honour of being one of the promised nations.19 But another of the nations so promised was foretold to be "a great nation" (Genesis 12, 2) with which would be associated "a company of nations" (Genesis 35,11,.) The author, in his comprehensive work entitled Israel-Britain, gives overwhelming evidence proving that Great Britain and the British Commonwealth of Nations is the great "nation and company of nations" predicted in the Bible.20 But none of these nations must be confused with the Jews, who are mainly the descendants of Judah. The Scriptures repeatedly foretold that Israel would be "as the sand of the sea for multitude", whereas the number of the Jews is very small in comparison to the many millions of British and Scandinavian stock in the world.
As is proved by the research contained in the work Israel- Britain above referred to, the British peoples are chiefly descended from the ten tribes who constituted the northern Kingdom of Israel, although the other two tribes are also to a certain extent represented therein. Hence the English- speaking nations of the British Empire and the United States of America, together with the kindred Scandinavian nations, constitute modern Israel in general—"many nations", as was foretold to Abraham. The nation of Iceland is Benjamin in particular, although, of course, there is also a considerable Benjamite element in Norway, Scotland and central Canada. The Jews, on the other hand, are Judah in particular At present, while great Israel in general is centred in London, the little Benjamite section thereof is centred in Reykjavik.21
Although Great Britain (Modern Israel) is the "great nation" that was promised to Abraham, the British people as a whole are, as yet, blind to their identity and inheritance, as the Prophet Isaiah foretold they would be, saying : "Who is blind but My servant" "Thou art My servant, O Israel" "Listen, O Isles, unto Me." (Note, the British nation live on isles). But God has appointed the little nation of Iceland (Benjamin) as the beautiful "light-bearer" to remove the blindness of their brethren, the great British Nation and the kindred Scandinavian nations. And, ultimately, all these nations will unitedly, as Israel under the guidance of Christ, lead the world into a better age. But it will be beloved little Benjamin, under the modern name of Iceland, who will lead the way, as fore-runner and light-bearer. Scotland and Norway will be the first to be enlightened as these have also a goodly proportion of Benjamin blood and are also nearest to Iceland.
Benjamin's present capital city, Reykjavik, will be the City of Light until great Israel—the English-speaking world—is awakened, and then Benjamin's original capital city, Jerusalem, will be restored to more than former glory, for ultimately all nations shall walk in the light of it (see Jeremiah 3, 17, Isaiah
Even when the time comes that all the Israel nations praise and thank God for deliverance, Benjamin will evidently be their leader in the praise, as indicated in Psalm 68, 25-27.
"The singers went before, the players on instruments followed after; among them were the damsels playing with timbrels. Bless ye God in the congregations, even the LORD from the fountain of Israel. There is little Benjamin their ruler (leader)."
The last sentence in the above Scriptural quotation is rendered very nicely in the French Bible, which reads:‑
"Voici Benjamin le plus jeune, qui conduit les autres." (Behold Benjamin the youngest, who leads the others.)
How high, therefore, is Iceland's calling and how great her inheritance! God is not going to use simply a few Icelanders, but the whole nation—men, women and children. This is a day of great movements, but Iceland, under Divine guidance, is soon to inaugurate the greatest spiritual movement of modern times, one which will lead all the British and Scandinavian peoples into a new epoch of their history. The time is now at hand for the removal of the blindness of the Israel nations to their identity and inheritance. Iceland will be the first of all the Israel nations to recognise that she is part of God's great Israel, through whom the Almighty has promised to bless and uplift the whole world, because Iceland is Benjamin the Divinely chosen light-bearer to the other Israel nations. This awakening, beginning in Iceland, will gradually spread over the British Isles, Scandinavia, United States of America, and the British Dominions and territories beyond the seas.
God is also going to demonstrate to the world, through Iceland, that spiritual standards are higher and ultimately more powerful than material ones. He will prove to mankind the truth of His Holy Word, which says: "Righteousness exalteth a nation” (Proverbs 14,34). Through Iceland the Almighty will show that a Christian nation which truly turns to righteousness, even though they do not possess a single gun to defend themselves, will not only be Divinely protected but will be exalted. This explains why the 24th chapter of Isaiah's prophecy predicts Iceland securely singing praises of thanksgiving to God in the midst of a world gone mad with war (see also chapter 34 of the same prophecy). The Divine protection ensuring the happy security of Benjamin-Iceland is beautifully expressed in the prophecy of Deuteronomy 33,12 uttered by Moses :
"And of Benjamin he said, The beloved of the LORD shall dwell in safety by him; and the LORD shall cover him all the day long, and he shall dwell between his shoulders."
So, what lies in the immediate future, is the rapid spiritual ascendancy of Iceland, whose influence, like a great beacon, will gradually enlighten the great British Empire, beginning with Scotland. May the prospect of such a glorious mission fill the heart of every Icelander with zeal for God and for the spiritual welfare of his native land, which God has chosen for such an exalted service. Let all Iceland give every possible help to their beloved Bishop in raising the spirituality of the country to the high standard necessary, before the nation can be used of God in this lofty capacity. The Almighty has passed by those great and mighty nations having material standards and has chosen Iceland—the little Benjamin of the nations—to set a high spiritual standard before the peoples of the Earth, and to shine before the world as witness to His truth in the dark days ahead. What an honour! Let Iceland's motto be: "RIGHTEOUSNESS EXALTETH A NATION."
(1) Benjamin was born near Bethlehem, and of Jacob's twelve sons he was the only one born in the Holy Land. The name "Benjamin" means "son of my right hand." Joseph and Benjamin were children of Rachel, who had no other sons. Although Reuben was Jacob's first-born he forfeited the birthright which was transferred to Joseph, the second youngest son. (1 Chronicles 5, 1, 2 ). The first-born was entitled to a double portion of the inheritance, hence Joseph's posterity formed not one tribe, but two, viz., Ephraim and Manasseh (these being the names of Joseph's two sons) and on the division of the land of Canaan these each received their own portion of territory in like manner to the other tribes. Hence, Ephraim, Manasseh and Benjamin were by blood more closely related to each other than to the other tribes of Israel.
(2) Dean Farrar states that all the Twelve Apostles of Christ, with only one exception, were of the Tribe of Benjamin, and that one exception was of the Tribe of Judah, viz., Judas Iscariot, the only one that proved unfaithful. The "Temple Dictionary of the Bible," under the caption "Galilee" states that eleven of Christ's chosen Apostles (i.e., all of them except Judas Iscariot) were Galileans—the terms Benjamites and Galilaeans being synonymous. But Judas Iscariot's place was eventually filled by a Benjamite, hence, in the end, all the twelve chosen Apostles of Christ were Galileans (Benjamites) as stated in Acts 2,7.
(3) Iceland, Handbook by Thorsteinn Thorsteinsson, pp. 120-122.
(4) Ibid., p. 122
(5) It is also referred to as “The Land of Fire and Frost." Iceland was originally called Snowland. Although the climate in the lower lands of the south-west is remarkably equable, the interior of Iceland contains huge snow-fields. Perpetual snow occupies over 5,400 square miles of the country, and the snow-line in the north of the island is only 2,000 feet above sea-level.
(6) When the Ten Tribes were taken captive to Assyria, the Assyrians placed in their vacated territory a mixture of foreign races, who became known as the Samaritans. But when the Two Tribes of Judah and Benjamin were carried away to Babylon, no people occupied their land in the south of Palestine; it lay desolate. The Ten Tribes never returned from Assyria, but the Two Tribes returned soon after the fall of Babylon and re-inhabited their unoccupied land. The territory of Benjamin lay to the north of Judah's portion and adjacent to it. In course of time, as the population greatly increased, the Benjamites spread still further north into Galilee a much larger tract of land beyond the Samaritans, whilst Judah expanded into Benjamin's original small piece of territory in addition to retaining their own portion. This explains why the city of Jerusalem which was originally in Benjamin's territory (Joshua 18,28) was to be found in Judaea (Judah's land) in the time of Christ. In the Book of Ezra (4,1 and 10,9) the Tribes who had returned from the Captivity are stated, viz., "Judah and Benjamin". Ezra and Nehemiah are the Biblical books which give the account of the return from the Captivity, and in these, none of the Ten Tribes of the Kingdom of Israel are ever mentioned. The Ten Tribes, of course, were never taken to Babylon at all, but to Assyria, hundreds of miles from Babylon and their captivity preceded that of Judah and Benjamin by about a century. Secular history is as clear as Bible history on the matter. Josephus, the well known Jewish historian, about A.D. 70 wrote:" The Ten Tribes did not return to Palestine; only two tribes served the Romans after Palestine became a Roman Province." The same historian also said, "There are but two tribes in Asia and Europe subject to the Romans, while the ten tribes are beyond the Euphrates till now, and are an immense multitude." True there were in Judea and Galilee a few individuals belonging to the Ten Tribes as well as a few foreigners, but the Ten Tribes, as such, never returned. Of course, in almost every nation or tribe there is a sprinkling of outsiders. So, in Christ's day, we find Palestine divided into three provinces—(1) Judea in the south, wherein dwelt the Tribe of Judah, the real Jews. (2) Samaria in the middle, which was occupied by the Samaritans. (3) Galilee in the north, inhabited by the Tribe of Benjamin, who were then generally called Galileans
(7) In this connection the following extract from Milner's work Israel's Wanderings, p. 121, should be noted:‑
"This (prophecy) did not apply to the coming captivity. Nebuchadnezzar's hosts came out of the East, not the North. Neither did Benjamin obey the warning then, for they were taken captive with Judah, and shared Judah's lot, partly returning to Palestine, partly settling in the towns of Asia Minor."
(8) The non-Christian remnant of the Benjamites who did not obey and flee from Jerusalem, of course, shared the fate of the Jews, consequently we find there is an element of the blood of Benjamin amongst the Jews of to-day.
(9) A small number of the Celts accompanied the Norse settlers from the Scottish Isles, but these were so inconsiderable as not to have left scarcely a trace upon the language of the country.
(10) In Old Testament times a month was 30 days. There were twelve months in the year, which therefore had 360 days (12 x 30.---360), the odd 5 1/4 days making up the solar year being accumulated over a period of years and intercalated periodically.
(11) A punishment of Seven Times is mentioned seven times as such in the Bible (Leviticus 26,18,21,24,28, Daniel 4,16.23, 25) and remarkably enough the Three and a Half Times is also referred to seven times (Daniel 7,25. 12,7, Revelation 11,2,3, 12,6,14. 13,5).
(12) When calculating the number of years from a B.C. date to an A.D. date add the dates together and substract one. For example, from 2 B.C. to A.D. 2 is 3 years (2 +2 —1 =3). Similarly, from 603 B.C. to A.D. 1918 is 2,520 years (603-1-1918-1 = 2520).
(13) Also an altar of witness, c.f. Joshua 22, 28.
(14) There were two kingdoms of Egypt, one comprising the region of the Nile Delta and the other higher up the Nile Valley, hence the ancient name of Egypt was sometimes written in the singular (Mazor) and sometimes in the plural (Mizraim), although the plural form was also used at times in reference to the lower kingdom only, wherein was the land of Goshen where the Israelites were in bondage to the Egyptians for a time.
(15) "Gizeh" means skirt, and was so named because it was the ledge of rock forming the "skirt" or border of the desert, though so near to Egypt's ancient capitals, Memphis and Heliopolis
(16) Readers desiring to make a general study of the Great Pyramid are referred to the comprehensive Pyramid section of the book Israel-Britain.
(17) Those desiring to test the accuracy of this Pyramid-Reykjavik Indicator must, of course, use a map on Mercator's Projection, as this is the only projection in common use on which direction is true. Even then care must be exercised as it is difficult to obtain a map which is absolutely true over such a great distance. From the Great Pyramid to Reykjavik is over 3,273 British statute miles even as measured along the arc of the great circle connecting the two points—which, of course, is the shortest distance between them as taken on the surface of the Globe. Again, this arc must not be confused with the Pyramid-Reykjavik Indicator, which is a rhumb-line.
The geometrical location of Iceland relative both to the Earth itself and to the Great Pyramid is remarkable. The meridian of the major equatorial axis of the Earth coincides with the east coast of Iceland, which in turn is 45° west of the meridian of the Great Pyramid. The distance between the meridian of the Pyramid (31 9' E.) and the said meridian (13° 51' W.) is 1/8 of the circuit of the Earth at any given latitude, and if taken at the Equator is just 1/8 of the equatorial circumference of the Globe. Further, if an angle of 45° be taken from the Great Pyramid the arc described intercepts the east coast of Iceland ; hence the distance from the Great Pyramid to the "Point of Intersection" on the east coast of Iceland is also 1/8 of the World's circumference, in that plane. Then, as is well known, Rifstangi, the most northerly point of the island of Iceland, exactly touches the Arctic Circle.
(18) The Hebrew word equivalent to the Egyptian "khuti" is "urim" and it occurs in Isaiah 24,15, which refers to Iceland, as explained on page 12. 36.
(19) The non-Benjamite element in the blood of the Icelanders is, of course, almost entirely Gothic. But in Israel-Britain, chapter II, it is clearly shewn that the Goths were also of Abrahamic descent. Hence the entire population of Iceland—Benjamite and non-Benjamite alike—is of Abrahamic stock.
(20) At the Imperial Conference held in London in the year 1926 the self-governing British Dominions were declared to be "autonomous communities within the British Empire equal in status and in no way subordinate one to another in any aspect of their domestic or external affairs . . . and freely associated as members of the British Commonwealth of Nations." This "Company of Nations" so declared the Constitution of the Commonwealth that ANY NATION CAN JOIN THE BRITISH COMMONWEALTH OF NATIONS AND YET REMAIN A FREE AND INDEPENDENT NATION, as all the present members are, under the Crown.
(21) The Tribe of Benjamin's position was with Ephraim and Manasseh when the Israelites were on the march. Again when the Tribes were arranged round the Tabernacle in the Wilderness, Ephraim Benjamin and Manasseh formed a separate group, on the west side. Then in Psalm 80,2 these three tribes are again grouped, "Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh"—with Benjamin in the middle. Ephraim and Manasseh were the two most important and influential tribes of Israel (as distinct from Judah). Britain and the U.S.A. are now the two greatest and most influential Israel nations, and Iceland (Benjamin) lies geographically within meridians between these two great nations. "Benjamin" therefore is still between "Ephraim" and "Manasseh"—between the two mighty "shoulders" of modern Israel.