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Bible Dictionaries

Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary

Captivities of Israel

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In the year of the world 3264, Tiglath- pileser took several cities, and carried away captives, principally from the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and the half tribe of Manasseh, 2 Kings 15:29 . In the year of the world 3283, Shalmaneser took and destroyed Samaria, after a siege of three years, and transplanted the tribes that had been spared by Tiglath-pileser, to provinces beyond the Euphrates, 2 Kings 18:10-11 . It is generally believed, there was no return of the ten tribes from this second captivity. But when we examine carefully the writings of the Prophets, we find a return of at least a great part of Israel from the captivity clearly pointed out. Hosea says, "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," Hosea 11:11 . Amos says, "And I will bring again my people Israel from their captivity: they shall build their ruined cities and inhabit them," &c, Amos 9:14 . Obadiah observes. "The captivity of this host of the children of Israel shall possess that of the Canaanites," &c, Obadiah 1:18-19 . To the same purpose speak the other Prophets. "The Lord shall assemble the outcast of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah," Isaiah 11:12-13 . Ezekiel received an order from God to take two pieces of wood, and write on one, "For Judah and for the children of Israel;" and on the other, "For Joseph and for all the house of Israel;" and to join these two pieces of wood, that they might become one, and designate the reunion of Judah and Israel, Ezekiel 37:16 . Jeremiah is equally express: "The house of Judah shall walk with the house of Israel; and they shall come together out of the north, to the land which I have given for an inheritance to their fathers," Jeremiah 3:18 . See also Jeremiah 31:7-9; Jeremiah 31:16-17; Jeremiah 31:20; Jeremiah 16:15; Jeremiah 49:2 , &c; Zechariah 9:13; Zechariah 10:6; Zechariah 10:10; Micah 2:12 . In the historical books of Scripture, we find that Israelites of the ten tribes, as well as of Judah and Benjamin, returned from the captivity. Among those that returned with Zerubbabel are reckoned some of Ephraim and Manasseh, who settled at Jerusalem with the tribe of Judah. When Ezra numbered those who returned from the captivity, he only inquired whether they were of the race of Israel; and at the first passover which was then celebrated in the temple, was a sacrifice of twelve he-goats for the whole house of Israel, according to the number of the tribes, Ezra 6:16-17; Ezra 8:35 . Under the Maccabees, and in our Saviour's time, we see Palestine peopled by Israelites of all the tribes indifferently. The Samaritan Chronicle asserts that in the thirty-fifth year of the pontificate of Abdelus, three thousand Israelites, by permission of King Sauredius, returned from captivity, under the conduct of Adus, son of Simon.

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Bibliography Information
Watson, Richard. Entry for 'Captivities of Israel'. Richard Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary. 1831-2.

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