In Part 1 of this series, I covered specific time periods of early Israel and how biblical events during that time may provide us with some indication for events that we might expect in today’s end times ‘northern kingdom.’
In Part 2, I continued with a discussion of Israel’s kings, and covered topics related to the northern kingdom’s ancient kings starting with king Jereboam through the time that the kingdom was taken into exile. I again drew comparisons to the last days ‘northern kingdom’ and its kings and rulers.
In Part 3, I addressed prophets in the ancient northern kingdom, and I then showed parallels to prophets in our last days ‘northern kingdom.’
In this current, final passage in this series, I will examine:
- Interrelations of the ancient northern kingdom with its neighbors
- Lessons from the Minor Prophets to the northern kingdom about end times interrelations between the last days ‘northern kingdom’ and its neighbors
I will again use the process of comparing interrelations of the ancient northern kingdom with its neighbors with those of the ‘northern kingdom’ and its neighbors in these end times.
Interrelations of the ancient northern kingdom with its neighbors
Lessons discussed in this section related to a deeply corrupted and wicked ancient northern kingdom include that this kingdom: became isolated; fought against its Judah brethren without reward; and had bad relations with its neighbor Syria. I will discuss each of these background themes in separate sections below.
An ancient, corrupt northern kingdom was left out and isolated
The first consequence of false-god worship in the ancient northern kingdom was that they were left out of alliances, including those with their brethren of Judah. They had few friends. The man of God from Judah in the example I gave in Part 3 who came to Bethel to declare the destruction of Jereboam’s relatively newly formed kingdom was instructed by God not to have relations or fellowship with any other in the land. The stranger he interacted with turned out to be lying and deceiving.
In Part 2, I discussed how king Jehoshaphat (of Judah) joined king Ahab of Israel in a battle versus Syria in which Syria won and Ahab was killed. Jehoshaphat was later scolded by Jehu about how he/Judah should not assist an “ungodly” northern kingdom. Jehoshaphat got the message. When Ahab’s son Ahaziah later approached him about partnering in going to Ophir to trade for gold, Jehoshaphat declined.
In another example, to show the level of severity in importance of ancient Judah abstaining from relations with its corrupt neighbor Israel, Elisha-apointed king Jehu, in the process of continuing to wipe out the wicked house of Ahab, also slew king Ahaziah of Judah and his men for coming to the northern kingdom merely to pay their respects for Ahab’s son, Jehoram, who had been injured in battle.
Next, Ahab’s other son king Joram wanted to go up to battle against Moab, which scripture tells us had “rebelled.” Edom and Judah joined him, but all of the kings sought Elisha’s blessing to go fight first. Although Elisha gave his blessing, we are told that he only regarded the king of Judah when the kings approached.
Later, when king Amaziah of Judah went to battle against Edom, he considered having Ephraim alongside. He was advised by a man of God, “The Lord is not with them,” and was instructed to not have them join in battle. Amaziah sent the Ephraimites home. You may recall from my earlier passages on this site that Ephraim already had a history of not taking part in battles in which it should have been involved in.
The pattern here is that a corrupt northern kingdom that was away from God found itself isolated on many occasions and lacking any true alliances.
The northern kingdom fought against its Judah brethren to their own detriment
The next lesson learned is the one that I stated in Part 1, which is based on God’s instructions to Judah at the time of the early kings that they should not fight against their brethren. Presumably, this instruction works both ways, especially given that the northern kingdom was always godless and corrupt; hence, the same reason for their isolation just discussed above. At one time in their history, one might have thought it inconceivable that there would be strife between entire segments of the house of Israel, but some dissention was always there, and once the kingdom split, conflicts continued.
When the northern kingdom did come against Judah to fight, the results were never especially beneficial for them. Their first king Jereboam tried, and then Judah came back after him and took two cities in the land of Bethel and Ephraim. King Basha after Jereboam began to encroach on Judah by building cities in Ramah (Benjamin) and was driven out when Syria assisted Judah. Syria also attacked cities in the northern kingdom at this time.
Queen Athaliah in Judah was an example of a different kind of attacker. She was a traitor, from the house of Ahab in Israel, but who married Judah’s king Joram. She proceeded to kill Judah’s royal seed except for one who was saved, Joash. She was killed by Judah priests shortly thereafter, and Joash was installed as king.
King Jehoash of the northern kingdom later directly attacked Judah. He broke down the wall of Jerusalem that led to the gate of Ephraim in an act that likely had symbolic and/or prophetic meaning. He plundered the house of the Lord as well as the king’s house, and took hostages back to Samaria. Then, a similar scenario happened several kings later when king Pekah of Israel aligned with Rezin of Syria and took “evil counsel” against Judah and its king Ahaz. Judah was not completely overcome, but Pekah captured Ahaz, and carried away thousands of Judah captive, along with spoil. Here, the prophet Oded came and scolded Israel for hypocritically taking brethren hostage and petitioned to let them go, warning that the “fierce wrath of God” was upon them.
One general rule observed in these latter examples is that those who are in bondage themselves, such as the northern kingdom was, tend to desire to take others into bondage in what becomes a continuing cycle of control, oppression and plundering. Entire underground kingdoms are built based on who can garner and enslave the largest army.
The house of Israel was always meant to remain free of alliances, bondage, covenants, etc.; that is, to remain separate for the purpose of being free to worship their God and rely solely upon him. This type of general rule will apply again in these end times.
The northern kingdom’s relations with other nations were never very good
Most of the northern kingdom’s interrelations with nations/kingdoms other than Judah were with Syria. The corrupt northern kingdom with its evil leaders and false prophets was virtually never in a position of strength to fight against enemies like Syria, yet fighting was frequent between the two. As I illustrated in Part 3, God still lent his supernatural assistance to the corrupt northern kingdom on occasion.
Altogether, the northern kingdom never had good relations with its neighbor, Syria. I mentioned above how, not too long after the Judah-Israel kingdom split-off, Syria helped Judah against Israel and in that process attacked the northern kingdom. Ahab later made a covenant with Syria to regain these territories as well as some parts in Damascus, but covenants with foreign people and lands have their own potential traps and ways of binding. Otherwise, later in the northern kingdom’s history on a rare occasion when Syria (loosely) joined the northern kingdom against Judah (king Ahaz), the king of Assyria helped Judah. Judah was not completely overcome, and while the northern kingdom took some spoil, they also soon suffered attacks by the king of Assyria who who took captives and captured much land from them.
Syria itself, perhaps often detecting weakness in the northern kingdom throughout, always encroached inside its borders, on occasion “filling the land,” setting up camp within, etc. Syria’s kings would go up against Israel for treasure and plunder as a weakened kingdom that had “little flocks” of people versus the multitudes of Syrians. Even so, God occasionally strengthened the northern kingdom and gave them victories, preordained by his prophets. On one occasion, they slew 100,000 Syrians in one day while the rest fled. On another occasion, in the time of Elisha, the Syrians were blinded as a result of prayer by Elisha until they were awakened in Samaria. They retreated once they realized that they were in range of attack. Not too long after, amidst a time of famine in the land, Syrians left their camp due to being spooked by an evil spirit, allowing the Israelites to come and capture their plunder.
But the ongoing war went back and forth over time. Once Elijah-appointed king Hazael of Syria emerged, the Lord decided to deliver Israel into his hands “all of his days.” This king of Syria oppressed and held them captive in their own land, making them “like dust.” After this, the cycle temporarily reversed and both kings Jehoash and Jereboam II of Israel, the latter declared a savior for the northern kingdom, defeated Syria, and took back cities and restored borders.
In the final stage of the kingdom, the king of Assyria approached and threatened the northern kingdom, took some land, extorted money, and then turned back. We are told the Assyrian king later put the northern kingdom under siege for three years. Once king Hoshea severed loyalties to Assyria and went to Egypt, then the Assyrians came and took Israel into captivity. Israel went into exile.
The northern kingdom could only return to God through Judah
While the kingdom of Judah certainly had its own problems along the way, it was only through Judah that a fully corrupt Israel had an opportunity to return to the Lord. Early on, it was king Asa who did some clean-up of false god worship in Judah, and at this time also did some of this work in Ephraim and Manasseh. His son Jehoshaphat carried forward this work in Judah, and then also took away some “high places” and altars in Ephraim.
Much later, once the northern kingdom was fairly well captive and/or scattered, king Hezekiah encouraged the people of the northern kingdom to “find compassion among those who lead you captive” by returning to and worshiping the God of Israel. Hezekiah invited them to Passover and Israel broke down its images and groves to idols around that time. While some mocked, others came and joined. Not too long after, king Josiah of Judah also purged altars in the northern kingdom and some children of Ephraim and Manasseh even gave him money to help restore the temple.
Lessons from the Minor Prophets about interrelations of the last days ‘northern kingdom’
In this section, we find that the modern day ‘Ephraim,’ the ‘northern kingdom,’ will follow a somewhat similar pattern to the ancient northern kingdom. The following prophetic developments will take place for last days ‘Ephraim’ in that it will: Become desolate among the ‘nations’ and peoples of the Chaldean system; fight against its Judah brethren; and attempt an escape to the new world order that includes its own enemy ‘Assyria.’
The last days ‘northern kingdom’ will become desolate among the ‘nations’ and peoples of the anti-Christ Chaldean system
The enemy of the end times ‘northern kingdom’ is no longer external, but instead it is within in ‘Babylon’-U.S and ‘Babylon’ worldwide. This is the same scenario that I have described in previous passages on this site for the last days country of Israel. As a result of enemy infiltration, and its own cooperation and willing participation, the people of ‘Ephraim’ are again highly corrupt and deceived by false, foreign gods and anti-Christ Chaldean practices in these last days.
As a part of this anti-Christ Chaldean system, they have intermingled and intermarried with the people of ‘Babylon’-U.S. This will be revealed in these last days to have been an intentional strategy of the many ‘nations’ and people groups that comprise the Chaldeans against God’s house of Israel. This was always an intentional strategy to weaken them as a people, as well as to lead them into transgressions and away from their God.
As of now, peoples of ‘Ephraim,’ whose original seed according to his grandfather ‘Jacob’s blessing would become a “multitude of nations,” along with much of the rest of the house of Israel, are a significant part of the great melting pot of the last days ‘northern kingdom,’ ‘Babylon’-U.S. All of these generations later, they have become a part of what God calls his “speckled heritage” (Jer 12:9). Their intermingling is what the prophet Hosea referred to as follows:
- “Ephraim, he hath mixed himself among the people; Ephraim is a cake not turned. Strangers have devoured his strength, and he knoweth it not: yea, gray hairs are here and there upon him, yet he knoweth not.” (Hos 7:8-9)
As a result of the infestation of anti-Christ Chaldean gods and the deception thereby, ‘Ephraim’ will find itself surrounded, trapped and in bondage once it awakens to the imprisoning matrix system which was specifically designed against the house of Israel and true Christ believers. Ironically, it will be trapped by its own enemies of many ‘nations’ and people groups that exist within the last days ‘northern kingdom’ and to whom it has taken oaths to serve. There will not be an immediate way out. This same nature of spiritual bondage and imprisonment led to the undoing of the ancient northern kingdom culminating in their exile. Meanwhile, the following is what we learn about ‘Ephraim’s bondage at the hands of others in the end times:
- “Ephraim is oppressed and broken in judgment, because he willingly walked after the commandment.” (Hos 5:11)
- “God says, Ephraim is joined to idols: let him alone.” (Hos 4:17)
‘Ephraim’ and the people of the house of Israel will finally wake up to the fact that the anti-Christ Chaldeans are not their friends. They will find themselves left out, isolated and persecuted. Recall that the anti-Christ Chaldeans are God’s own tool of punishment on his corrupt people. The last days Chaldeans, not even loyal to their own oath-takers in many cases, follow a strict occult-based narrative and storyline that is directly aligned against God’s coming kingdom and (errantly) envision the creation of their own kingdom.
I have described previously and alluded to above, however, that Israel’s own people are unfortunately powerful leaders and rulers within the anti-Christ Chaldean system. The Minor Prophets frequently foretold of how these wicked rulers would oppress others, as I described in Part 2. Even these powerful rulers will awaken, will be caught, and if they do not go into hiding, they will flee after their own secret network turns on them and exposes their oppressive activities. Similarly, when the ‘northern kingdom’ people at-large awaken and realize their enemy, they will flee and wander. They will once again be isolated as a nation as follows:
- “Ephraim shall be desolate in the day of rebuke: among the tribes of Israel have I made known that which shall surely be.” (Hos 5:9)
The result here is similar to that in ancient Israel described above, only a modern version. Enemies of God’s people pursue them, capture them in their nets of captivity (e.g. extortion, bribery, blackmail, etc.), plunder them, and then make them desolate.
The ‘northern kingdom’ will fight again against its righteous brethren
The next lesson learned from ancient northern kingdom history, discussed in the first section of this passage, is that they are not supposed to fight against their brethren. This is an instruction from God. Not surprisingly, history dictates that this does not work out for them anyway.
In these last days, and as referred to above, ‘Ephraim’ and the house of Israel is mixed in as part of the worldwide anti-Christ Chaldean new world order (its own enemy) and is virtually indistinguishable from its many ‘nations’ and peoples who are a part. They will be living in a “polluted” land that we are told will become “divided by a survey line.” This represents the ‘iron’ fist of powerful corrupt rulers and captains of industry versus the ‘clay,’ which is the common people who are oppressed. This describes ‘Babylon,’ U.S. as well as the ‘Babylon’s end times worldwide kingdom. ‘Ephraim’ is largely on the wrong side of this dividing line.
Similar to an earlier example of an ancient Syria versus Israel war, both sides including rulers and common people will likely be blinded as to the truth in the last days. Everyone will fight against one another, starting at the household level and then increasing up to the institutional level even including entire countries. This is a natural result of the satanic dialectic methodology that is followed by the new world order, sponsored by the anti-Christ Chaldeans. The very system that has kept corrupt rulers in power will turn on them. This will be the time that God says, “Now shall be their perplexity” (Mic 7:4). This is the end times ‘Babylonian’ world kingdom, with the name ‘Babylon’ itself meaning “confusion.”
Virtually all including ‘Ephraim’ will have been deceived and distracted related to having a true awareness and understanding of the small, righteous holy ‘Jacob’-Judah small flock remnant that is among them; the ones who have had an awakening, are not deceived, and represent the true coming kingdom of God. Unfortunately, many peoples of the world including ‘Ephraim’ will have been groomed to be against this group of God’s future kingdom leaders under Jesus Christ by the numerous idols and propaganda deliberately infested and perpetuated over the course of generations by the anti-Christ Chaldeans.
As a result of its own confusion and misplaced loyalties, last days ‘Ephraim’ will be complicit in persecuting their brethren, ironically the only ones who can save them, and this includes their own Lord’s Spirit of truth who is the chief of the righteous ‘Jacob’-Judah remnant. This will occur in these end times, a time about which we are told, “The Lord hath a controversy with his people, and he will plead with Israel (Mic 6:2).” As I described in Part 3, his people in the ‘northern kingdom’ will refuse to return at first. Scripture in the Minor Prophets to the northern kingdom shows how they will be aligned against the Lord in the last days as follows:
- “Though I have bound and strengthened their arms, yet do they imagine mischief against me.” (Hos 7:15)
- “As they were increased, so they sinned against me: therefore will I change their glory into shame.” (Hos 4:7)
In addition to ‘Ephraim’ fighting against the Lord himself, his righteous ‘Jacob’-Judah remnant people will also be rejected. I have described in prior passages that those who are in the Lord’s righteous ‘Jacob’-Judah remnant reside in the last days ‘northern kingdom’-‘Babylon’-U.S., just as ‘Ephraim’ does.
So within a world of anti-Christ Chaldean confusion with much fighting, there will be an ‘Ephraim’-‘Samaria’ versus holy, royal Judah (remnant) fight all over again in the last days ‘northern kingdom.’ As for ‘Ephraim,’ we learn that there exists envy of Judah in the last days (ref: Is 11:13). We are told that last days ‘Ephraim’ and ‘Manasseh’ will turn against their righteous Judah brethren (ref. Is 9:21). Minor Prophets to the northern kingdom are clear that God will support his end times Judah remnant, saying during this time, “I will have mercy on Judah” (Hos 1:7). About his righteous ‘Jacob’-Judah small remnant, the Lord also says:
- “The Lord hath sworn by the excellency of Jacob, Surely I will never forget any of their works.” (Am 8:7)
- “And the pride of Israel testifieth to his face: and they do not return to the Lord their God, nor seek him for all this.” (Hos 7:10)
I have described in detail the war of many ‘nations’ against this “small flock” remnant in prior passages, including those peoples who are in ‘Babylon’-U.S. I have also previously explained that a corrupt house of Judah (including a house of David) remnant in the country of Israel will be aligned with the same corrupt ‘Ephraim’ in the U.S. that I refer to above. The following verse is actually referring to powerful rulers in Zion (country of Israel and possibly worldwide) who are complicit in the destruction of the Lord’s ‘Jacob’-Judah remnant. These are merely part of the same new world order, anti-Christ enemy:
- “That drink wine in bowls, and anoint themselves with the chief ointments: but they are not grieved for the affliction of Joseph.” (Am 6:6)
Both corrupt branches of last days Israel (Judah and ‘Ephraim’) are unfortunately merely part of the anti-Christ Chaldean new world order system. They are joined with the entire anti-Christ force of the world that comes against the Lord’s Spirit of truth and ‘Jacob’s “small flock” remnant in the last days. This represents “kingdom versus kingdom” in the last days, according to the words of Jesus. In his troubling vision of this kingdom war and the massive force of the anti-Christ Chaldeans against ‘Jacob’ and his “small flock” remnant in the last days, the prophet Amos prayed to the Lord more than once, and asked, “By whom shall Jacob arise? For he is small.”
Within this last days ‘Babylonian’-created ‘kingdom’ and the world war that it spawns, while the righteous ‘Jacob’-Judah remnant will be delivered out of it by the Lord himself, Syria and the Assyrian and his armies will turn against the last days ‘Ephraim’ and greater house of Israel. I discussed Syria’s rejection of ‘Ephraim’ in within ‘Babylon’-U.S. above. Below, I will discuss last days ‘Assyria’ and how the ‘Assyrian,’ will come against ‘Ephraim’ with foreign multitudes from without and will invade their end times ‘northern kingdom’ dwelling place.
A turn to ‘Egypt’ and ’Assyria’- i.e. the new world order
(Part of the following is adapted from my passage on this site entitled, Last days prophecy in the book of Hosea)
Scripture in the book of Hosea repeats multiple times that ‘Ephraim’ will again be like God’s people of old, and will turn, against God’s wishes, to ‘Egypt’ and ‘Assyria’ for help in the last days. As I have mentioned in prior passages, the terms ‘Egypt’ and ‘Assyria’ applying to the end times generally represent the anti-Christ Chaldeans and the new world order. The large anti-Christ Chaldean traitor presence that is already heavily engrained in the U.S. (as described in the section above) will make this initial escape of corrupt Chaldeans to a global government appear much easier at first than it may seem on the surface.
The factor that drives corrupt ‘Ephraim’s run to the new world order is that God’s punishment against him (the U.S.) for his sin and unrepentant heart will have begun. Americans and their leaders will refuse to seek the Lord, even in their troubles and confusion. So, when ‘Ephraim’ discovers his “sickness” and proactively turns to the ‘Assyrian’ for help, what ‘Ephraim’ does not realize is the very source of his sickness is the same place where he turns for help; that is, the anti-Christ Chaldeans who ‘Ephraim’ will eventually realize is its own enemy. Recall that the design of Chaldean dialectic system is to deliberately cause problems and then to also be there, playing the other side, with an appearance of providing the solution; thereby, increasing their hold on power and control as well as the peoples’ perceived dependence on them versus God. This is why God berates and mocks ‘Ephraim’s move to join its own enemies as follows:
- “Ephraim is like a dove, easily deceived and senseless- now calling to Egypt, now turning to Assyria.” (Hos 7:11)
- “Ephraim feeds on the wind; he pursues the east wind all day and multiplies lies and violence. He makes a treaty with Assyria and sends olive oil to Egypt.” (Hos 12:1)
Once ‘Ephraim’ (the U.S.) turns to the new world order, and is “among the nations,” he will become powerless- a willing prisoner, surrendered to the new world order that is aligned against them. Scripture in the book of Hosea says at this point that he will become like a “worthless thing.” ‘Ephraim’ will be desolate.
Just as that which happened at the end of the ancient northern kingdom, a corrupt, lawless, wicked end times ‘northern kingdom’ of ‘Babylon’-U.S. will be under siege all over again. This happens at the hands of the end times ‘Assyrian’; we are told that God’s people will be under the “oppression of a mighty king” (Hos 8:10). This will likely be the one-world anti-Christ Chaldean leader. This is described in a last days context by the Minor Prophets to the northern kingdom whose words are considered for this passage. The following were spoken by a couple of these prophets:
- “Therefore thus saith the Lord God; An adversary there shall be even round about the land; and he shall bring down thy strength from thee, and thy palaces shall be spoiled.” (Am 3:11)
- “Israel is swallowed up: now shall they be among the Gentiles as a vessel wherein is no pleasure.For they are gone up to Assyria, a wild ass alone by himself: Ephraim hath hired lovers (among the nations).” (Hos 8:8-9)
- “Therefore will I cause you to go into captivity beyond Damascus, saith the Lord, whose name is The God of hosts.” (Am 5:27)
The latter scripture is referring to captivity at the hands of the ‘Assyrian’ that I have discussed. While the country of Israel itself will also be surrounded and come under siege from the north (see my prior passages entitled, God’s coming punishment on the country of Israel), the prophetic meaning of end times Syria and Damascus is broader than merely the current day land of Syria. Its peoples are part of the mingled ‘nations’ of the United States, again, along with ‘Ephraim.’
‘Ephraim’ and the ‘northern kingdom’ will remain away from God. ‘Ephraim’ will live many days without a king and instead among many enemies during the day of the Lord. They will ultimately come to the end of themselves when they realize that the ‘Assyrian’ cannot help them. They will finally seek the God of Israel, their Messiah Jesus Christ. ‘Ephraim’ and God say the following, respectively, in prophetic scripture:
- “Asshur (Assyria) shall not save us; we will not ride upon horses: neither will we say any more to the work of our hands, Ye are our gods: for in thee the fatherless findeth mercy.” (Hos 14:3)
- “Ephraim shall say, What have I to do any more with idols? I have heard him, and observed him: I am like a green fir tree. From me is thy fruit found.” (Hos 14:8)
Altogether, the only hope of return and salvation for ‘Ephraim’ and the last days ‘northern kingdom’ will be to seek Jesus Christ the Messiah and his Spirit of truth, the latter who will be among the righteous, holy and royal ‘Jacob’-Judah remnant. I described in Part 3 how ‘Ephraim’ will only come to “birth” later in the end times after enduring many trials during the day of the Lord. When ‘Ephraim’ returns as somewhat of a prodigal son, this will represent the time when the end times Son of man takes the stick of ‘Ephraim’ and re-joins it with the stick of ‘Judah’ (described in Ez Ch. 37 where the stick of ‘Ephraim’ represents “all the house of Israel and his companions”). Then God’s kingdom under the reign of Jesus Christ will begin.
So there will be good news in the end for a righteous, repentant and redeemed ‘Ephraim’ and ‘northern kingdom’ who calls upon their Messiah, Jesus Christ. We are told that, at the time the Lord “roars”:
- They shall tremble as a bird out of Egypt, and as a dove out of the land of Assyria: and I will place them in their houses, saith the Lord.” (Hos 11:11)
Grace & Peace,
Lion’s Lair (LL)