… and obliterates the entire Egyptian army using HAARP technology and Directed Energy Weaponry
The Israelites’ first stop on the great trek toward Arabia, General Atiku, was a place known as Succouth, about 120 km south of today’s Port of Suez. This was exactly 3 days after their departure from Goshen.
The Succouth stop, General, was not meant for an overnight rest. Within the Succouth region and near Serabit El Khadim were two Egyptian controlled copper and turquoise mines where Israelite slaves toiled without pay. Thus Moses ordered a stop there to collect the Israelite miners, a gesture which was in keeping with the terms of the exodus he had negotiated with Pharaoh Ramesses.
From Succouth, General, Moses led the Nation of Israel to Migdol, the Egyptians’ three-way look-out point, which was about 500 km from Egypt. At Migdol, the Egyptians, who were keeping tabs on the huge Israelite procession, kept meticulously trained homing pigeons – organic couriers of messages between Egypt and the Sinai Peninsula. The Egyptians had used courier pigeons since 2400 BC. The moment the Egyptian sentries observed the approach of Israelite hordes, they immediately dispatched one or two homing pigeons to the Pharaoh’s palace to alert him accordingly. Homing pigeons flew at a speed of 100 km per hour and so in only 5 hours’ time, Ramesses would have received the message.
From Migdol, General, the Israelites proceeded to Etham, where they reached “a dead end”. Etham was surrounded by mountains 300 metres high. This made the Israelites a sitting target in case the Egyptians pursued after them. With such a rude awakening, Ishkur-Adad, the executive Anunnaki Enlilite god, had a rethink and had his people retrace their way back to the plain at the foot of Migdol, where they were to camp. It seems, General, that these back-and-forth manouevres were also a strategy on the part of Adad to confuse the Egyptians.
Next, the Israelites moved to Pi-Hahiroth, around the southern tip of the Sinai Peninsula. Pi-Hahiroth was located on the shores of the Gulf of Aqaba, that is, between Migdol and the eastern arm of the Red Sea.
To date, General, the Israelites had been moving through the “Wilderness of Egypt”. The Wilderness of Egypt was the V-shaped area of land between the Gulf of Suez and the Gulf of Aqaba. Today, it is known as the Sinai Peninsula.
EGYPTIAN FORCES HEM IN ON ISRAELITE CONTINGENT
The Israelites camped for 8 days at Pi-Hahiroth. This is curious, General: if the Israelites were pressed for time to get to Arabia, why did Adad let them procrastinate for so long?
The Bible itself provides the answer in EXODUS 4:14, General, which reads thus: “Thus I will make the heart of Pharaoh steadfast, so he will pursue after them. Then I shall indeed be glorified in Pharaoh and in all his army; and the Egyptians will know that I am Yahweh. Hence they did so.”
Once again, General, we see Adad’s mind manipulation artifice at work here. Adad’s intention was to perform a great “miracle” that would astonish both the Egyptians and the Israelites – the parting of the Red Sea, that is, the Gulf of Aqaba. He wanted the Egyptians to be firsthand witnesses to this extraordinary feat so it could be the talk of the day. So what does he do, General? He uses his long-honed mind-control tricks to work on the psyche of Ramesses so that he (Ramesses) makes a rash decision to give fervid chase after the Israelites.
So the moment Ramesses received the message delivered by the homing pigeons – that the Israelites were now camped at the foot of Migdol (before they set off for Pi-Hahiroth) – he sent a 600-man strong chariotry after them. His excuse was that the Israelites had tactfully (that is, by way of deceptive borrowing) purloined a priceless amount of gold and silver from his people and he wanted this returned before they crossed the Gulf of Aqaba.
Since the Egyptian army were horse-mounted, they arrived at Pi-Hahiroth much faster than the Israelites did. But they did not attack the Israelites there and then, General, as they were intimidated by Adad’s formidable-looking flying saucer which kept vigil over the Israelites day in and day out.
Seeing that the Egyptian forces were now on the scene, Adad decided to get his people to cross the sea using the Straits of Tiran, which linked Arabia to the Sinai Peninsula. To effectually do that humanly speaking, they would have required thousands of ferries, which would have taken months to construct. The quickest passage was by way of none other than a miracle. How was this miracle to be effected, General?
MOSES OPTS FOR STRAITS OF TIRAN
According to the Bible, the Israelites were presently camped at Pi-Hahiroth (meaning “Mouth of Water” as it was located on the rims of a bay that was shaped, roughly, like a cross-section of an open mouth). Pi-Hahiroth was located around the southern edge of the Sinai Peninsula and overlooked the island of Baal-Zaphon (EXODUS 14:1-4), a rather visible marker across the Gulf of Aqaba, the eastern arm of the three-prong Red Sea.
Baal Zaphon (also called Mt. Tiran) is a half-kilometre-high mountain on Tiran Island in present-day Saudi Arabia. Baal Zaphon means “Lord of the North”. The Lord of the North as we well know, General, was Utu-Shamash, Enlil-Jehovah’s most prominent grandson. He was so-called because it was he who oversaw Baalbek (also known as the Crest of Zaphon), the Anunnaki aeronautical landing place which is located in present-day Lebanon, which indeed is north of Israel.
What that implies, General, is that although Baal-Zaphon was south of the Arabian mainland, it was controlled by Utu-Shamash, the Lord of the northern-located Crest of Zaphon. Thus the three major Enlilite gods of the day – Nannar-Sin, Ishkur-Adad, and Utu-Shamash – were all based in Arabia at the time of the Exodus, with Nannar-Sin as the seniormost of them all. It explains, General, why Nannar-Sin in due course became the Allah of Islam, a religion that was spawned in Arabia.
The Israelites did not linger long at Pi-Hahiroth. Remember, General, they were using a route previously unexplored. They decided to vacate Pi-Hahiroth because they were kind of boxed in by the high mountains surrounding them, which would make them a sitting target to the Egyptian army in case it pounced (EXODUS 14:3). Accordingly, they headed due northeast for a place known as the Straits of Tiran. Why, General, did Moses opt for the Straits of Tiran?
The Straits of Tiran is a natural land bridge that links the Sinai Peninsula to the Arabian mainland. About 18 km long and 0.8 km wide, it is the shallowest stretch of the Gulf of Aqaba. It actually comprises of two lanes. The one, called the Enterprise Passage, is 205 metres deep, and the other, called the Grafton Passage, is only 70 metres deep.
Thus the Straits of Tiran was Moses’ best bet if he and his people were to cross the Gulf of Aqaba. But exactly how, General, since 70 metres was by no means a walkable depth and the Israelites were no fishes but humans who breathed open-air oxygen through their nostrils?
ADAD PARTS THE GULF OF AQABA
The Bible says Moses had the Israelites cross the Red Sea when he miraculously parted one wall of water from another to allow for a dry-land walkway across. That, sadly, is an exaggeration, General. The person who parted the Red Sea was not Moses but the Anunnaki god Ishkur-Adad, the Jehovah of the Exodus.
He did this to impress both the Egyptians and the Israelites, having subliminally influenced Pharaoh Ramesses (by way of long-distance hypnotic, mind-control triggers) to come after them (EXODUS 14:8). But even Adad did not perform a miracle, General: he used HAARP technology and a Directed Energy Weapon (DEW).
When we acknowledge the parting of the Red Sea, we’re simply giving the Bible the benefit of the doubt. The incident is not recorded anywhere in the Egyptian annals, General. Yet our overriding impulse is that the Pentateuch writers would not simply have imagined it.
The other possibility we should allow for, General, is that the Straits of Tiran at the time was likely not as deep as it is today: its waters were probably only inches deep, so that it was easy for the Israelites to wade across it all the way to the Arabian shores.
The Bible also says when the Egyptian army surged forth to chase after the Israelite caravan, the waters resurged, hemmed them in, and had them perish. If Adad indeed did employ HAARP technology and DEW, such a scenario would have been possible: these precision technologies can trigger tsunamis instantaneously. But a counter to such a scenario, General, is that once again, the mass perishing of the Egyptian army in a watery disaster as they pursued after the Israelites is not documented in ancient Egyptian archives.
In any case, General, the Egyptians would not have been so foolhardy as to charge at the Israelites when Adad’s Flying Saucer, which menacingly hovered around, would have easily unleashed dazzlingly swift and deadly tomahawk-like missiles at them.
So if indeed the Egyptian army did perish en masse, it was the result of Adad’s “magical” missiles rather than Frankenstein waters swallowing them in one fell swoop. Ramesses and his courtiers would have deemed it too humiliatingly stigmatic to admit to such a wondrous and wholesale annihilation of his forces and so they would have opted not to log it into the Egyptian archives for fear of losing face both before the body politic and posterity.
SEVENTH DAY REST BORE NO RELIGIOUS CONNOTATIONS WHATSOEVER
Still whilst the Israelites were camped in the Wilderness of Sin, General, Adad decided to set aside the last day of their week’s sojourn there whereby they were to desist from all kind of work and simply relax and possibly introspect on their movements to date as well as ponder the journey ahead.
This incident has been grossly distorted by some sections of Christendom to mean Adad sanctified the 7th day, Saturday, as a holy day. Sadly, that is way out of context, General, as the official ordainment of the Sabbath took place much later.
If you objectively read the context of the story in the 16th chapter of Exodus, General, you won’t see any religious underpinnings whatsoever. At this stage, all Adad wanted was for the Israelites to simply rest on the 7th day of their arrival in the Wilderness of Sin.
He thought they desperately needed a leisurely day given that over the week they had been busy catching, salting, and drying quails (the quails were so plenteous they “covered the camp”(EXODUS 16:13). In any case, the quails had stopped arriving on the evening of the 6th day, so that when some of the wayward Israelites continued to look out for them on the 7th day regardless of Adad’s edict that they desist from all work of any kind, they saw none (EXODUS 16:27).
The fact that Adad intended the Israelites to do utterly nothing on the 7th day is suggested in EXODUS 16:23, where Moses exhorts them to cook and bake enough on the 6th day so that they won’t need to do that on the 7th day.
Thus the observance of the 7th day in the Wilderness of Sin, General, had nothing to do with spirituality: it was simply about total abstinence from work, an off-duty sort of scenario. Indeed, there is nowhere in EXODUS 16, General, where Moses enjoins the Israelites to set about worshipping Adad.
At this stage, the Israelites simply were not ready to devotionally dedicate themselves to Adad as they still were wracked with doubts. A recurring word in EXODUS 16 is “grumbling”. The Israelites were full of gripes and remonstrations against Adad, an obdurately stubborn tendency that greatly troubled Moses.
That said, the number 7 was a significant one to the Enlilites, General, in that it was the number of their leader overall, Jehovah-Enlil, as well as the number of the planet Earth when counted from the direction of the planet Pluto. In the creation story in the opening passages of Genesis, the Elohim (the ruling pantheon of the Anunnaki) are said to have rested from the creation process on the 7th day.
Of course General we now know, courtesy of the Sumerian records, which predated Genesis by about 3000 years and on whose contents the Genesis writers substantially drew upon, that it was Enki, the great Anunnaki scientist who genetically engineered Adam into existence, who rested on the 7th day of his arrival on Earth 432,000 years ago. Enki’s rest was not from creating the world: it was from the toils of setting up his residential estate at Eridu (from which the word Earth derives) in modern-day Iraq.
WHY ADAD ACTED AT THE TIME HE DID
When Ishkur-Adad retrieved the Nation of Israel from Egypt circa 1335 BC, General, he aimed at attaining three objectives primarily.
The first was to fulfill the promise the Enlilites, the Anunnaki clan of Jehovah-Enlil, had made to Abraham in 2041 BC. If you recall, General, that year Amar-Sin, the King of Ur (in today’s Iraq) formed a coalition of four Kings of the East (Mesopotamia, today’s Iraq) under the auspices of the wayward and debauched Anunnaki goddess Inanna-Ishtar and deployed them into war against the Five Kings of the West (Canaan).
Inanna’s principal goal was to capture the Anunnaki spaceport in the Sinai Peninsula and thereafter declare herself the Queen of Earth at the expense of Marduk (an Enkite and her mortal enemy), whose ascendancy to the lordship of Earth (due in 2220 BC, the mathematical onset of the astrological Age of Aries but still a bone of contention visually as the Taurus constellation still was prominent in the night sky) was long overdue but towards which he was striving day in and day out anyway.
Having picked up intelligence from as early as 2048 BC as to what Inanna was up to, Nannar-Sin, Inanna’s father, commissioned Abraham, a crack military general, to set course for Canaan with an elite corps of cavalrymen and cordon off the spaceport. General Abe performed suitably in this regard when he duly intercepted and repelled the Eastern armies miles well before they could reach the spaceport.
An exhilarated Sin undertook to Abraham that as a reward for the feat he had performed, his descendants were to take possession of Canaan (which was presently inhabited mainly by the descendants of Noah’s son Ham) in the fullness of time (GENESIS 15:18-21). Canaan was henceforth referred to as the Promised Land by the Jews.
Sin reiterated the promise to Abraham’s son Isaac (GENESIS 26:3) and his grandson Jacob (GENESIS 28:13). It was now 700 years since Canaan was pledged to Abraham and Adad, Sin’s younger brother, decided it was time the Enlilites made good on their promise.
The second reason Adad decided to remove the Jews from Egypt to Canaan, General, was to right the wrongs of the past at the expense of the descendants of Shem. You will recall, General, that after the Deluge, Noah produced three children in the same year from three different mothers.
These were Shem, Japheth and Ham. When the known world was partitioned between the Enkites and Enlilites, it was on the basis of the offspring of these three. Japheth’s people were allotted Europe; Shem’s people the Middle East; and Ham’s people Africa and the Arabian land mass. Shem and Japheth were under the tutelage of Enlilites, whereas Ham was under the tutelage of Enkites.
The land that later came to be known as Canaan was accordingly and legally inhabited by Semites, Shem’s people, with Ham’s people (Hamites) concentrated in north Africa. For some reason, the most influential Hamites were the descendants of Canaan, Ham’s fourth-born son.
When Set waged war against Horus over the control of Egypt, he rallied to himself Canaan’s people. And when he invaded the land that came to be known as Canaan circa 8970 BC, his army largely comprised of Canaan’s people. Canaan’s people drove away Shem’s people from the appropriated land and settled in it. That’s how it came to be known as Canaan.
Set’s seizure of the land of Canaan, General, was illegal as it was a flagrant breach of the terms of the partition of the known world. Thus it was that in 1335 BC, Adad decided it was time Canaan was repossessed and populated by a people to whom it rightly belonged – the Semites.
Although the term Semites included both Arabs (descendants of Esau and Ishmael) and Jews (descendants of Jacob), in this context it applied only to the descendants of Jacob (who was also known as Israel) because it was to Isaac and Jacob Canaan was pledged and not to Ishmael or Esau.
Finally, General, Adad was in a hurry to remove the Jews from Egypt to Canaan because King Anu of Nibiru, “Our Father Who Art In Heaven”, was expected to touch down on Earth in about 700 years’ time. Anu was to land on Earth via the new spaceport in the Americas and was to be feted in what was already designated as the future capital of the world – Jerusalem.
By that time, Canaan as Anu’s host country had to be in the hands of the Jews, the Enlilites’ chosen people. The Enlilites had to be in charge of the affairs not only of Canaan but of the whole world. Anu would be received not by Marduk, the legal Chief Executive of Earth, but by a member of the Enlilite top brass.
Ideally, this was Nannar-Sin, who was the legal (not the lineal) heir of Jehovah-Enlil. But as we have long demonstrated, General, as Anu’s arrival neared, the Enlilites began to contend for the right to host Anu. The main contenders were Sin, Adad, and Utu-Shamash.
Princess Mary falls pregnant only one month after her betrothal to Prince Joseph
To put the lineage of Mary the mother of Jesus in context, General Atiku, it is in order that we begin with her grandfather Yehoshua (Jesus in Greek) III.
Mary was offspring of two royal lines, the Davidic line and the Hasmonean line. Yehoshua III was the Herod–appointed High Priest of Israel between 36 and 23 BC. He had no sons, only three daughters namely Joanna, Elizabeth, and Anna, all of whom he organised dynastic suitors.
Elizabeth would be married off into the House of Aaron, the legitimate priestly line, and Joanna and Anna would be married off into the House of David, the legitimate kingly line. That’s how Elizabeth became the wife of Zechariah of the tribe of Levi and in due course the mother of John the Baptist.
Mainstream Israel up to the level of the Sanhedrin had recognised Anna as the eligible mother of the future King of Israel and not the sitting impostor Herod (it is not clear what happened to first-born Joanna but she probably passed away before she got married). Anna was accordingly married off to Alexander III, a Davidic and Hasmonean prince who was best known as Heli as indeed the genealogy of Luke clearly attests.
Heli and Anna too had no sons. They only had daughters, the firstborn of whom was Dorcas, whose was born in 26 BC and whose titular name was Mary. Mary was orphaned early in her childhood when her father Heli was killed in 17 BC at the orders of the increasingly paranoid Herod and when her mother Anna died a year or so later.
Since she was a dynastic heiress, it was likely that Herod would come after her. The Essenes thus secreted her somewhere in remote Galilee. It was actually in Galilee that most members of the Davidic royal line were concentrated not only to keep as far away from Herod as possible but to also enjoy the protective custody of the Zealots, who were the secret military wing of the Essenes and a thorn in the side of both Herod and the Romans. Joseph was also officially based in Galilee although both he and Mary were in truth based at Qumran in the Judean wilds.
JOSEPH CALLED TO “DUTY”
Dynastic marriages are often more politically strategic than spontaneous, General. For example, the union of Prince Charles and Princess Diana was motivated by the need to fuse the Windsor genes with those of the Stuarts as the Windsors, being predominantly Reptilians, were finding it increasingly difficult to maintain their human form.
The Stuarts, the clan of Diana, had by far more human genes than Reptilian and they too were an aristocratic family. That’s why once Charles had produced a “heir and a spare”, he completely sidelined Diana, who he had never loved, and devoted himself to his real love – Camilla Parker-Bowles.
The marriage of Joseph to Mary, General, was equally strategic. Although both were from the tribe of Judah and of the royal Davidic line, they were from different branches. Joseph was a descendant of Solomon, whereas Mary was a descendant of Nathan, Solomon’s elder brother. The line of Solomon, as we once underlined, had been tainted by the Jeconiah curse.
The line of Nathan was clean. Since the son of Joseph and Mary would be the future King of Israel, it was important that he not be compromised by the baggage, rightly or wrongly, of the Jeconiah curse. Hence the desirability of the union of Prince Joseph and Princess Mary.
Now, both Joseph and Mary’s clans were Essenes. As such, their marriage process, formalities, and protocols had to strictly adhere to Essene dynastic rules. The Essenes were in ranks. Amongst the higher echelons were the two great dynasties, the Davids and the Zadoks, who had been the high priests and kings of Israel respectively before the destruction of the Temple by Nebuchadnezzar in 586 BC.
The Davids and Zadoks lived a strictly holy life, typically in a monastery at Qumran, the reclusive headquarters of the Essenes. They were sequestered there so that they did not fall prey to the machinations of the bloodthirsty King Herod though officially their address was Galilee. In fact, the major reason the Essene movement had come into existence was to preserve and safeguard the Davidic and Zadokite lines, the religio-politico haunt of Herod and the Hasmoneans initially.
According to the Essene code, General, the Zadoks and the Davids were not to engage in sex for recreational purposes because it was regarded as defiling: it diluted holiness. The only times they were supposed to do so was when need arose to produce heirs. In 8 BC, it was now opportune for Joseph, the David, to produce a heir and so he was excused from a life of chastity.
At this point in time in fact, the Essenes were focused on two dynastic figures. These were Joseph and Zechariah. The two were expected to produce the Messiah of David and the Messiah of Aaron, that is, the future King of Israel and the future High Priest of Israel.
According to Essene rules, the David had to marry at age 36, so that by the time he was 40, he had already sired a heir. The new heir had to be born when the David was 37. If the child was a daughter, she could not inherit, and so the David had to set about the procreation of a second-born, who hopefully would be a boy (copulation to that end was allowed only when the daughter was 3 years old).
The Davidic heir had to be born not in any other month but in September, the holiest in the Jewish calendar. In order to conform to these parameters, a betrothal ceremony was held at the beginning of June. During the betrothal period – the three months from beginning of June to end of August – sexual relations were not permitted.
Then at the beginning of September, a First Marriage was held. This was the beginning of the marriage proper as now the couple were allowed to become intimate. However, the intimacy began only in December, with a view to delivering a heir in September the following year. At the end of March, the Second Marriage was held for it was hoped that by that time the spouse was three months pregnant if there hadn’t been a miscarriage. With the Second Marriage, the wedlock was permanent: divorce was never allowed whatsoever.
Meanwhile, General, if the spouse hadn’t conceived in December, sexual relations were suspended till December the following year. The husband would then leave her spouse and return either to the monastery at Qumran or embark on a tour of duty elsewhere in furtherance of the Essene cause.
A BINDING ENGAGEMENT
According to the Dead Sea Scrolls, General, the Essenes were not only a spiritual, revolutionary, and philosophical movement. They were also ardent believers in astrology. They meticulously studied the stars and the movements of planets to read what they portended about the future.
Thus the reason a Davidic heir had to be born in September was not only because this was the holiest month of the year: it was also in recognition of the fact that September was ruled by the constellation Virgo. In other words, September was astrologically the month of the virgin. That was what Mary was.
Mary was both a virgin physically and a virgin titularly. A bride of the future king was required to be a virgin. As an Essene, Mary belonged to the Order (not the tribe) of Dan. This was the Order of Nuns, or virgins, both legal and physical virgins. Thus in the Order of Dan, a woman was not a virgin only before she slept with a man: she was a virgin until she was six months pregnant. In the case of a dynastic spouse like Mary, this was up to end of June. From then henceforth, she was promoted within the Order to the first stage of a Mother.
Joseph’s betrothal to Mary took place at Qumran in June 8 BC. Now, in our day, betrothal simply means engagement to be married. In ancient Israel up to New Testament times, betrothal was part and parcel of the marriage contract. It was definite and binding upon both groom and bride, who were considered as man and wife in all legal and religious aspects, except that sexual relations were not permitted.
For example, in 2 SAMUEL 3:14, King David refers to his betrothed woman as “my wife”. Also in DEUTERONOMY 22:24, a betrothed woman is referred to as “his neighbour’s wife”. In the betrothal formalities, dowry and bride price were included. If a bride and groom for one reason or the other wanted to opt out of the betrothal after the betrothal ceremony, they had to seek a formal divorce.
Since the betrothal took place in June, General, Joseph and Mary were not supposed to make love till December, that is, six months after the betrothal ceremony and three months after the First Marriage ceremony in September. Just one month after the betrothal ceremony (that is, at the beginning of July 8 BC), however, Mary became pregnant. Was it Joseph, General? Was it rape by a Roman soldier called Panthera as some contemporary records suggest? Or was it simply the supernatural act of the “Holy Spirit” as Christendom holds?
THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS
Those who hold that the circumstances of Mary’s pregnancy were supernatural, General, can be excused. This is because the language employed therein smacks of ethereality – Holy Spirit, Angel Gabriel, Son of the Most High, etc. To those who have read and rigorously studied the Dead Sea Scrolls, however, such terminology is well within the temporal context.
That is to say, it does not carry spiritual connotations as such. True, the idea of an angel speaking to Joseph and Mary in their sleep may seem supernatural but the dreams are theological interpolations, inserted into the gospels in onward editing to fit a contrived agenda – what Karl Marx called the opium of the masses.
The Dead Sea Scrolls are so named because they were discovered in caves around the Qumran plateau of the West Bank (about 40 km east of Jerusalem), at the northwest corner of the Dead Sea, in March 1947. The discoverer was a Bedouin shepherd kid who was looking for a lost goat. The scrolls were found hidden in jars.
The 1947 find was the initial discovery: more discoveries were made after further excavations on the same site spanning 11 years in a series of 11 caves. Altogether, 972 texts were turned up. They are written in four languages, namely Hebrew (the majority), Aramaic, Greek, and Nabatean, mostly on parchment. Other texts were inscribed on papyrus and bronze.
Most of the Dead Sea Scrolls are fragments. Fragments of all the Old Testament books have been found save for the book of Esther. The only complete book is Isaiah. There are also apocryphal books (those arbitrarily excluded from the Old Testament canon by the Constantine-convened Nicene Council of AD 325) such as the Book of Enoch and the Book of Jubilees, and sect-specific writings that embody rules and beliefs of the people who compiled them.
The latter include commentaries on the Old Testament, paraphrases that expand on the Law of Moses, rule books of the community, war conduct, thanksgiving psalms, hymnic compositions, benedictions, liturgical texts, and sapiential (wisdom) writing. These texts have been given appropriate titles such as the War Scroll; Manual of Discipline; the Community Rule; the Temple Scroll; the Copper Scroll; etc.
The Dead Sea Scrolls were written/preserved by the Essenes between 168 BC and 68 AD. We know this because Pliny, the first century Roman historian, wrote that, “On the west coast of Lake Asphaltitis (the Dead Sea) are settled the Essenes, at some distance from the noisome odours that are experienced on the shore itself.
They are a lonely people, the most extraordinary in the world, who live without women, without love, without money, with the palm trees for their only companions.” The Essenes stashed away the scrolls sometime in 70 AD, when Roman General Flavius Titus overran Jerusalem and laid waste to the Temple following a catastrophic Jewish uprising – led by the Zealots, the military wing of the Essenes – that began in 66 BC.
This they did in heed of JEREMIAH 32:14, which says, “Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel; Take these evidences … and put them in an earthen vessel, that they may continue many days.” The Dead Sea Scrolls have given us invaluable insight into the beliefs, customs, rituals, politics, philosophies, and traditions of first century Palestine.
The rivalry between luxury German automotive marques Mercedes-Benz and BMW is legendary. Both brands offer high-end, high-priced desirable models, always at the forefront of cutting-edge driving technology and excellence. And in the annals of the advertising world, a campaign between the two rivals is equally legendary and it happened on our own doorstep.
Many of you will be familiar with the coastal road out of Cape Town called Chapman’s Peak. It is a beautiful, sightseeing attraction, the road winding through spectacular coastal-mountain scenery, with cliffs sinking into the Atlantic ocean on one side, and steep mountains towering over the road on the other. However, the road is also notoriously dangerous, with its 114 sharp, meandering bends . It’s reputation is well-deserved . Several years ago, when a major coastal cleanup campaign was launched, a helicopter pulled a total of 22 wrecked cars out of the water adjacent to Chapman’s Peak and it was one such accident which prefaced the notorious marketing battle. The story is thus:
In 1988 an Irish businessman lost control of his Mercedes Benz when driving along this road, plunging 100 metres down the cliff. Miraculously, he not only survived the accident, but crawled out of the wreckage with hardly a scratch on his body.
When Mercedes heard the details, the marketing department decided to base a new advertisement on the story to promote the safety features and stability of the brand. In the video ad they intentionally drove an identical model off the road in the exact same location, having it plunge off the edge of the cliff, the driver stepping out similarly unscathed, proving the phenomenal survivability and strength of Mercedes Benz.
When the marketing suits at BMW saw this ad, they took a bold and ingenious decision to mimic it but with a twist. Only a week later, whilst the first ad was still fresh in the public’s minds, they shot their ad showing a BMW driving along the exact same stretch of road in the rain. However, when it reached the point at which the Mercedes plunged off the cliff, the BMW negotiated it safely, and continued driving along the road.
The catchphrase of the ad was “BMW beats the bends” . Or was it? It was cunningly recorded so that it could equally have been ‘beats the Benz’, implying that their cars had superior cornering and stability to their rival, Even more sneakily, they launched their campaign on a Saturday, mindful of the rules on competitive advertising in South Africa, safe in the knowledge that no objectionable actions could be taken till the new working week.
Mercedes-Benz wasted no time on Monday in issuing an injunction, the ad was swiftly pulled but the damage was done and the dog had had its day. The ad campaign ranks high in the history of advertising and can still be found online to this day. Meanwhile the rivalry between the two automotive greats goes on.
I reference this piece of marketing history in the light of this week’s horror crash by golfing great, Tiger Woods. Driving from a luxury holiday resort in California to a nearby country club Tiger Woods lost control of his vehicle on a downhill stretch of the road, smashed through a road sign, crossed over the central reservation and rolled his car several hundred feet. He had to be cut out and pulled to safety through the windscreen and the vehicle was so badly damaged, the attending police officers said he was ‘lucky to survive’.
The vehicle Woods was driving was a rented Genesis GV80 SUV. If you are unfamiliar with the brand that is not surprising since it is a relatively new spin-off from the South Korean Hyundai marque. The Genesis utility vehicle, not available locally yet, retails for around $50,000 or half a million pula, placing it in the higher end of town and country SUVs in the USA.
The model has certainly been widely publicised in the media coverage of the high-profile sportsman’s accident and I suspect that if asked to comment, Hyundai/Genesis would disagree with the police assessment, putting Woods’ survival down to build quality and in-built safety features such as crumple zones, anti-roll bars and airbags, which were deployed in the crash and would most certainly have played their part cushioning the effects of the rolling and ultimate impact. There is , of course, no suggestion that the manufacturers will capitalise on Woods’ survival but certainly it will have done the brand no harm that he did indeed emerge with recoverable injuries.
Comparing the two accidents, the driver of the Mercedes driving along Chapman’s Peak was, of course, an ordinary member of the public whilst Tiger Woods is a household name. That said, in humanitarian terms each tale of survival carries equal weight but the fact remains that the former was just another local story of yet one more victim of a notoriously tricky stretch of road whilst the latter went round the world in an instant because of the fame and name of the driver.
There is also no evidence that that stretch of Californian urban highway carried any inherent risk. His appears to have been just a loss of control and a freak accident. However, in the event that Hyundai/Genesis should consider making capital from that accident, a note of caution needs to be sounded.
In the advertising world, the use of celebrities to promote a product is a fall-back stance to sell anything from washing-up liquid to whisky but statistics have shown that it can be a double-edged sword in that yes, the ads are memorable and the public love them when the celeb is popular and personable. But…..what is often remembered is the name of the famous promoter, not the name of the product. In other words, they sell themselves far better than they sell the item.
In golfing terminology Hyundai/Genesis are not ‘out of the Woods’ yet and maybe they should go with a completely different Driver!
How Jesus’s grandfather sold his birthright to megalomaniac Herod
If you were to ask a Christian to name the main Jewish sects, General Atiku, he would no doubt begin with the Pharisees (because Jesus had innumerable slanging matches with them according to the gospels), followed by the Sadducees. Yet there was a third, equally momentous sect – the Essenes.
Although there’s not a single, one mention of the Essenes in the Bible, General, the New Testament is filled with Essene-type language as anybody who has read the Dead Sea Scrolls would readily recognise.
In point of fact, it was the Essenes who produced Jesus as well as the infamous Jewish band of freedom fighters known as the Zealots. Furthermore, almost all the New Testament writers were either Essenes or champions of the Essene cause as is apparent in their language and the drift of their overall philosophy. The Essenes have a palpable presence in the Bible, albeit a cloaked one.
The Essenes, General, were the most popular, the most esteemed, and the most influential of the Jewish sects. The Jewish historian Philo (20 BC-50 AD) devotes 90 percent of his description of the Jewish sects to the Essenes. He wrote that the Essenes “dwell in many cities of Judea and in many villages and in great societies of many numbers”.
Hyppolytus of Rome (170-236 AD) devoted nine-and-half chapters to the Essenes and only one to the Sadducees. The Essenes are the authors of the famous Dead Sea Scrolls, which were discovered in 1947 in Israel at a place called Qumran and which have given us even greater insight into the happenings in the first century than the Bible itself.
How did the Essene movement come about, General? The Essenes, meaning “puritans of the faith”, were the Jewish sect that was the most loyal to the Davidic dynasty. They set themselves apart from the mainstream Jewish community circa 175 BC and established their headquarters at Qumran, about 40 km from Jerusalem.
Since the Jewish nation revered the Davidic royal line, the only legitimate and rightful rulers of Judah in their view, they rallied to the Essenes en masse. And because the Essenes were disparaging of the Hasmonean rule (140 BC to 63 BC), the mainstream Jews also took a dismissive view of Hasmonean rule too.
The Essenes were so highly regarded because of their virtue and spirituality. The legendary Jewish historian Flavius Josephus (37-100 AD) writes thus of them: “They are more mutually affectionate than the others (Pharisees and Sadducees). Whereas these men shun the pleasures as vice, they consider self-control and not succumbing to the passions virtue … Since [they are] despisers of wealth – their communal stock is astonishing – one cannot find a person among them who has more in terms of possessions.
For by a law, those coming into the school (that is, the Essene fold) must yield up their funds to the order, with the result that in all [their ranks] neither the humiliation of poverty nor the superiority of wealth is detectable, but the assets of each one have been mixed in together, as if they were brothers, to create one fund for all.”
In time, the Essenes, General, became quite influential even with occupying powers. For instance, when the Greek General Pompey installed Hyrcanus II as ruler of Palestine in 63 BC, he sought the opinion of the Essenes. The Essenes recommended that Hyrcanus go by the titles High Priest and Prince, not King, to which Pompey paid heed. In 142 BC, when Simon was installed by the Seleucids as ruler of Palestine, the Essenes had insisted on the same titular style. To the Essenes, everybody who occupied Israel’s seat of authority was simply holding fort for the real deal – the Davidic King.
In 37 BC, when Herod became King of Palestine, the potential Davidic King was Jacob-Eliakim – the father of the Joseph of the gospels – who was an Essene himself. It was in order to win the blessings of the historically popular Jewish royal family that Herod sought to curry favour with the Essenes.
JACOB’S PACT WITH HEROD
About the time Herod came to power, General, there were three citizens of considerable stature in Palestine – Hillel, Menahem, and Jacob-Eliakim, the grandfather of Jesus. Hillel is by all accounts ancient Israel’s greatest teacher and scholar.
He was the foremost spiritual sage in the development of the Talmud and the Mishnah, the most authoritative religious references of the Jews which are second only to the Old Testament in esteem. The renowned “Golden Rule”, which is invariably attributed to Jesus, was actually coined by Hillel. It is not certain whether Hillel was an Essene but his teachings did have a profound influence both on Essene philosophy and that of Jesus, who was an Essene too.
It was Menahem, however, who was an incontrovertible Essene. The Essenes were of two main branches, General. First, there were the puritans, the Palestinian Essenes. Then there were the liberals, the Diaspora Essenes, who sneered at the Palestinian Essenes’ dogmatism and rather strict views on morality. Menahem was the leader of the Diaspora Essenes.
He was also privilleged to be advisor to King Herod. Herod did hold Menahem in very high regard. Josephus relates that when Herod was a school-going lad, Menahem had patted him on his back and said to him, “one day you will be King young man.” Since the prophecy came to pass, Herod had a certain, atypical respect both for Menahem and the order of Essenes.
Jacob-Eliakim’s significance was by virtue of his pedigree. He was of the royal line of David and was therefore the uncrowned King of the Jews. Now, as we have already indicated, Herod had his own grand designs about rulership of the world notwithstanding the fact that he was in reality a vassal of Rome.
When he made overtures to the trio, they didn’t mince words: they told him that in the new Israel, the Israel that would rule Earth once the Romans had been toppled from the pedestal of world power, it was a Davidic King who would reign. Herod took very strong exception to such a prospect. Herod was neither a full-blooded Jew nor of Davidic stock but he was royalty in his own right.
His father, Antipater, had been the governor of Idumea and in due course Judea in the Hasmonean government and was in fact the real ruler of the entire Palestine, with John Hyrcanus being a mere figurehead king. When he (Herod) was only 25 years old, his father had appointed him governor of Galilee. Herod thus had strutted the corridors of power from the day he was born and he wasn’t going to give that up easily either for his own sake or that of his descendants.
As such, General, Herod maintained to the trio that in the new, overarching Kingdom of Israel, he was going to be the emperor and would be based in Jerusalem. Just like the Greek empire of Alexander had been a triarchy (a kingdom divided into three governments), the global Kingdom of Israel (“Thy Kingdom Come” in the Lord’s Prayer) was going to be likewise.
There was going to be a ruler in the east, a ruler in the west, and a ruler in the centre, that is Jerusalem, under the oversight of Herod himself. Hillel would rule in Jerusalem; Menahem in the east; and Jacob-Eliakim in the west. If these three happened to have disappeared from the Earthly scene by the time the Kingdom of Israel came into being, their descendants would observe the same setup.
The pecking order would thus be like this: Herod as the emperor; Hillel as the senior king; Menahem as the second-ranked king; and Jacob-Eliakim as the junior king. Put differently, Herod had by the stroke of a pen reduced the Davidic dynasty from foremost to least important as it posed the most serious threat to his office. Meanwhile, the three kings-in-waiting would go by the names of the Old Testament patriarchs.
Hillel would henceforth be called the Abraham, or the Father (or Papa, which later morphed into Pope), since Abraham was the Father of the Jewish nation; Menahem would be called the Isaac (Abraham’s son); and Eliakim the Jacob (Isaac’s son). Half a loaf was better than nothing at all and so Jacob-Eliakim meekly accepted this arrangement.
When Jesus later said, “Many will come from east and west and sit at table with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the new Kingdom of Heaven (MATTHEW 8:11),” he did not mean an afterlife kingdom: he referred to the Earthly setup proposed by King Herod.
FALLOUT WITH ESSENES
Those days, General, the Davidic heir used the title “Jacob” rather than “David” as the latter title was very risky, particularly under the Hasmonean government. Given that Joseph was the most beloved son of the Old Testament Jacob, the next in line, that is, the firstborn son of the Jacob, used the title “Joseph”.
In September 44 BC, a son was born to Jacob-Eliakim. As the crown prince to the Jacob, he was given the titular name Joseph, the name by which he became best-known. Like his father Jacob-Eliakim, Joseph was a missionary. But he also had a trade. He was a carpenter, a boat builder primarily, and a master of his craft. The word translated “carpenter” in the Bible is the ancient Greek word “ho hekton” which means a master artisan or craftsman.
In 31 BC, Qumran, the Essenes’ Judean wilderness bastion, was struck by an earthquake. The hermitic Essenes had no choice but to trek back to Jerusalem, from where they operated indefinitely at a place they called the Essene Gate. Then in 23 BC, Herod struck again. He had Jacob-Eliakim killed on trumped-up charges of sedition, his motive simply being a continuation of a systematic purge of the Davidic “pretenders” to his throne.
The Essenes were wroth. They now set about promulgating to the Diaspora Essenes that Herod would have no part to play in the coming Kingdom. Instead, the overall King would be Joseph, the son of Jacob-Eliakim. This, General, was the beginning of a permanent rift between Herod and the Essene sect.
THE SAGA OF JOSEPH
The prospective global world, General, was subdivided into ten provinces to facilitate governance and tax collection. Palestine would have two provinces, Judea and Samaria, the latter of which would include Galilee. Asia Minor (largely present-day Turkey), where the bulk of Diaspora Jews were concentrated, would have five provinces.
The last three provinces would be Babylon, Rome, and Alexandria in Egypt. The future capital of the West was not Rome: it was Ephesus in Asia Minor. Having been allocated the West, it was in Ephesus and Alexandria that Jacob-Eliakim spent most of his time evangelizing to fellow Jews about the future Kingdom of Israel. This was the beginning of the New Covenant, whereby Jews who converted to the ideal of a new Kingdom of Israel were baptised by immersion in water.
To mainstream Palestinian Jews, General, Jacob-Eliakim was a sellout. Herod had demoted his pedigree but to somewhat placate him, he gave him the honorary title of Patriarch or Prince of Jerusalem. By subordinating the Davidic throne-in-waiting to Herod, Jacob-Eliakim had gone against what the nation of Israel’s God, Enlil, the Bible’s main Jehovah, decreed – that every King of Judah had to be a descendant of David. So when the unpredictable Herod had him killed in 23 BC for “sedition”, as part of a pogrom against the line of David, there was very little sympathy for him.
In 44 BC, Joseph had been born to Jacob-Eliakim. Joseph was a title: it was not his real name. At the death of his father, Joseph became the Jacob. However, he preferred the title “David”, the more apt one historically. Joseph would become the father of Jesus. When Joseph attained 30 years of age in 14 BC, his uncles and the Essene sages sent him to Rome and Alexandria to do his part in missionary work, which was simply about promulgating to the Diaspora Jews the future Kingdom of Israel in which a Son of David, that is a descendant of King David, would rule. Egypt was also a special place because Joseph’s maternal relations were Egyptians.
Jacob-Eliakim, General, had two wives. The one was called Euchariah, a Jewish princess, of whom very little is known, and the other, the dynastic wife, was an Egyptian princess, a daughter of Queen Cleopatra VII of Egypt and Julius Caesar. Jacob-Eliakim and this princess had three sons: they were Joseph, the father of Jesus, and the twins Cleopas (after whom James, Jesus’ immediate younger brother, whose given name was Cleopas, was named) and Ptolas. Joseph was thus the Davidian Prince of Israel as well as contender to Crown Prince of Egypt. Despite pretences to the contrary on the part of the Jews, Egypt and Israel have always had ties of monarchical kinship.
In 8 BC, General, Joseph was required by Essene custom to return home and fulfill his obligations for a dynastic marriage. A wife-to-be had already been chosen for him by his uncles and other patriarchal Essenes. This was Dorcas, better known today by her title name Mary.