In an audio interview on Arutz 7 Rav Avraham ben Ya’acov reveals the Talmud statement about the ‘Lost or Captive Jewish Child.’ This child was created by the capture and exile of Jewish woman from the Land of Israel through the centuries by Assyria, Babylon, the Roman Empire and on and on. Many lost their total Jewish identity, rendering their children as ‘lost Jews’ without any Torah identity or Jewish culture. Add to this the thousands (perhaps millions) of Jews who during the Holocaust went ‘underground’ and assimilated with the nations, thereby losing their Jewish identity. The Jewish line though continued through their daughters to this day – lost Jews! – millions of them!
Many are led back today by HaShem through a yearning to ‘accept’ Judaism and Torah in their lives. They are mixed unrecognizable with millions of ‘Lost Ten Tribers’ who were exiled centuries before the 1st Temple destruction and also waking up to the Promised Divine Call today. The Hebrew Scriptures are brimful with Divine Promises by Oath that HaShem will in the ‘End Times’ call them back and return them to the fold – both Jews and 10-Tribers. They are all lumped by our Jewish spiritual leaders under one banner as ‘pagans’.
The question now arises re. the treatment by Judah of these Lost Jews who seem to be ‘re-awakening’ around the World today. This issue becomes more problematic due to the fact that history records the exile also of 10 of the 12 Tribes of Israel, defined in Bible as ‘The House of Israel’, i.e. the Northern kingdom after the split of King Solomon’s World Empire by God. All these exiles are destined by Prophetic Scripture and by the Oath of God, to be ‘returned’ to their heritage and to the Land in the ‘End Times.’ (Ref. Bible Confirmations of the Return of the Tribes of Israel).
When faced with the growing Phenomenon of ‘non-Jews’ from all corners of the Earth who are turning to Torah observation and becoming friendly to Jews and Israel, even pushing for conversion to Judaism and citizenship of the Land of Israel, the Jewish authorities (both religious and governmental), are presenting a totally obstructive an non- receptive consideration.
Two millennia of Jewish persecution by all the nations have driven Judah into self-protection mode, claiming the Torah (for which they have been persecuted and slaughtered) for “Jews-only” – contra to their Divine Mandate to be a Light of Torah unto all Nations. Those ‘strangers’ who make advances towards Judah for closer relations, are regarded as strangers, aliens and sojourners and offered a 2nd class association with Judaism and the Land of Israel as Noahides and/or Gerim. A mind-absorbing (mind-boggling) analysis of who may and who may not observe the Creator’s Shabbat has been devised with the main purpose of retaining Sabbath observance for Jews-only.
The question that has to be considered, is what the Halachic directive for Jews should be in regard to the treatment, acceptance and acknowledgement of a ‘lost Jew’ (who lost their identity due to the enslavement of Jewish mothers by Rome and other nations throughout history and their resultant assimilation with the nations). The Talmud refers to this as ‘the Lost Jewish Child’. To what extent, if any, is such a lost Jew (who does not even know that he/she has Jewish decendancy) regarded as a ‘Ger’ amongst Jews? And what is our Halachic obligation towards such a person? What if we misjudge such a person (who does not know his own identity as a ‘lost’ Jew) and regard him/her as a ‘Ger’, ‘Ger Toshav’, Noahide, etc?
If indeed, their rests an obligation on Judah to rescue such a ‘lost and captive’ Jewish soul, then we have to face the question: “What makes a ‘lost’ Ten Triber (who’s patriarchs stood with Judah at Mt Sinai and were citizens of King David and Solomon’s Israelite Empire) any different from such a ‘lost’ Jew? The risky factor which Jews should consider is: what if we wrongly classify a descendant of a Torah covenanted soul as a ‘Ger’ or Noahide, thus withholding them from proper Torah observance by segregating them rather than guiding them back to what is in fact their Covenantal obligation?
There is the ‘valid’ reasoning of course, in the case of the Ten Triber lost for centuries, how on earth can their identity be kosher after most certain repeated inter-marriages? Also: These Torah restoring souls across the World today are generally from the Church – from which, however, they have exited because of mainly early in this reawakening process, discovering the ‘Jewish’ 7th Day Shabbat which calls for exiting the Church system. (Ref. a suggested treatment of this problem: https://www.kolhator.com/guidelines-to-nt-messianic-jews-and-ten-tribers-regarding-their-avowed-messiah/ ).
Which brings us to the final consideration: How do these ‘physical’ descendants of Sinai covenanted Hebrews rank as “the innumerable GOYIM” (‘like the dust of the earth’) which have Divinely been promised to be Avraham’s decendancy? Are they going to be a ‘Torahless’ 2nd-class citizenry of HaShem’s Kingdom? It would most certainly seem that His -12-Tribed Kingdom will be a TORAH Kingdom – which is what it is all about.
A Rabbimnic response to this question:
We have had the following response to this question: “As for the Halachic guideline for ‘Judah’ to follow in relating to those who believe they are Israelites and from the “Lost” Tribes or some other alienation, I believe it is to be found in Rambam (Maimonides) Mishneh Torah, Sefer Shoftim, Laws of Rebels chapter 3 paragraph 3 talking about the offspring and descendants of Karaites:
“The children of these errant people and their grandchildren whose parents led them away and they were born among these Karaities and raised according to their conception, they are considered as a children captured and raised by them. Such a child may not be eager to follow the path of mitzvot (Commandments), for it is as if he was compelled not to. Even if later, he hears that he is Jewish and saw Jews and their faith, he is still considered as one who was compelled against observance, for he was raised according to their mistaken path. This applies to those who we mentioned who follow the erroneous Karaite path of their ancestors. Therefore it is appropriate to motivate them to repent and draw them to the power of the Torah with words of peace.
“Unfortunately many “Jewish” people have appalling ignorance of TaNaKh and world and Israelite history and manifest a serious blind spot when it comes to talk about the “Ten Tribes”, which is particularly surprising with all the talk of “Mashiach” and “Geulah” Redemption etc. I don’t know who is going to put themselves in the firing line and try to educate the “observant” Jewish communities in these subjects and at the very least treat the very many who are knocking at the doors of the Torah world with basic human respect giving them the benefit of the doubt and giving thanks to the Almighty that after millennia of oppression from all around us, at last people that may look, talk and act like “Goyim” are actually coming to us and asking to be taught more about the Torah. It is understandable why many “Jews” would have terrible suspicions about “Ten Tribers” particularly since some are vociferous believers in Jesus, which is an immediate put-off to the majority of “orthodox” Jews.
“We all need more humility and patience and willingness to listen carefully to one another and see how we can build bridges.”
This kind and humble response created a pleasant awareness in our readers of how such receptive and considerate attitude reflected by this Rabbi already moves Reconciliation miles closer on the horizon!
Delving deeper into the problem
In response we pointed out to the Rabbi that the ‘re-connecting’ problem does not stem from Judah only – most of these non-Jewish ‘Torah Restorers’ around the world (from both the Jewish side and the Ten Tribers side) resist Reconciliation or, at best, demand it on their own terms, thus still in measure being anti, whether anti Rabbinic, anti Oral Torah or anti-Return to the Land. Through our activities and promotions of Reconciliation through KOL HATOR and COI outreach, we find this obstruction overwhelming from both sides. Those lost souls from the House of Judah have through the centuries often become Christians. Though today, leaving the Churches because of their renewed Torah awareness, these ‘Jewish descendants are also influenced by the error of the Church they thus join the re-identifying Ten Tribers in their ‘Christian’ obstruction of the One True Faith, Judaism, in its fullness.
The Rabbi’s above response, as a guideline to resolving this problematic matter, refers to Rambam’s advice regarding the children of deceived Karaites. He presents the surprising and exciting conclusion: “Therefore it is appropriate to motivate them to repent and draw them to the power of the Torah with words of peace.” Wow! If Judah could be moved to such an approach! Giving ‘evangelizing’ Ephraim back some of their own strategies! Judah has so much to offer – it is simply amazing that Jews are so threatened by Ephraim’s ‘evangelizing’ based on totally Torah-less principles. The Jews that Christianity do catch are lead back to Egyptian paganism and captivity with 10-Israel. They need to be led ‘OUT’ of Egypt. This may well call for:
Time for Jewish ‘evangelizing of the Torah and Judaism’ to a World who do not know the Creator God of Israel or His Will for mankind.
Judah has obviously forgotten, or do not know of the proselytizing spree by Jews in Roman times which at one stage resulted in some 10% of the Roman nation converting to Judaism! This caused the Emperors to declare the death penalty to Jews who proselytize – which chased Judah into seclusion and self-protection mode for 2000 years, now declaring promotion of Judaism amongst non-Jews as forbidden! Are we really expected to hide our Light under the table behind closed curtains for our own benefit only?
The Time has come for Judah to go out and “evangelize the Torah and Judaism.” Rabbi Shmuley Boteach raises this suggestion in his appeal to the Jewish nation. (www.jpost.com/Opinion/No-holds-barred-Its-time-for-the-Jews-to-proselytize-462967)
Be sure to also do a Google Search for “Jewish proselytizing in Roman times” and be stunned by the evidence. Of course, this caused the Roman Empire to declare the death penalty to Jews for proselytizing. This drew Jews into self-protection mode for the last 2000 years so that today, proselytizing and teaching non-Jews Torah is frowned upon.
Israel today, after just 70 years of ‘rebirth of the Modern State of Israel, is a Light unto the nations for agriculture, scientific, medical and industrial advance. How can Israel possibly neglect to also share its Light of Torah knowledge (the Secret Success Key behind all) with the nations?
When Israel truly wakes up to the great plight of the “Captive Jewish and 10-Israel Child” in the World who is today re-identifying and coming to Life as per Prophetic Forecast and Divine Urge, this ‘crazy’ suggestion for Judaism to start proselytizing and evangelizing the ‘True Gospel of Redemption’ should be adopted – and the Final Redemption will be at the Door!
Without that Return of the Exiles, there cannot possibly be a Final Redemption!
Who will promote this topic to Judah’s spiritual leadership?
The Rabbi refers to “the appalling ignorance of TaNaKh and … history and … a serious blind spot amongst Jews today when it comes to talk about the “Ten Tribes”. How does or dare one try to educate Judah from a non-Rabbinic platform? Unless the Rabbinut ‘wake up’ to what is going on in this grave yard of the Skeleton of Ezekiel 37 ‘Coming to Life’, there can hardly be a Geulah, for it is doubtful that Mashiach will force Reconciliation on the two tragically divided Houses of Israel. And why would He come while 12-Israel is still at loggerheads with each other, with no communal Torah embracing between them? Is that not the very reason why the Shechinah of HaShem departed and ‘went into exile with the exiles’? Peace can ONLY be restored between two striding parties (as in a human divorce also) when the two striding parties arrange Peace terms between them. Which should be why this Reconciliation is so vitally important and dependent on the TWO striding sides to make Peace and accept each other to become ONE!
The Rabbi questions: “I don’t know who is going to put themselves in the firing line and try to educate the “observant” Jewish communities in these subjects.”
We need Rabbis like yourself and others who are starting to recognize those who “are actually coming to us and asking to be taught more about the Torah.” Many Rabbis today have taken a stand to teach these approaching ‘strangers’ even though many Rabbis would Halachically frown on it and even forbid it.
Such a Rabbinic team and operation would need substantial financial funding. Some of our interested readers in this discussion may wish to support such a project which would benefit not only themselves and their loved ones, but also future generations of Abraham’s Promised Blessing to inherit the Promised Land and rebuild Jerusalem under control of Judah for the Blessing of ALL nations!