June 22, 2008
A recent blog addressed the National Geographic Magazine’s discussion of the Bactrians without any mention of their Scythian connections. However, the July, 2008 issue of Discover Magazine has an interesting article entitled “The Mummy Diaries” about the discovery of a trove of Scythian mummies found in southern Siberia. The article notes that previous Scythian mummies have been found in the Altai Mountian region (near the border of Siberia and Mongolia) as well as near the Black Sea and in Western China. The Scythian mummies found in western China were the subject of a cable-TV documentary a few years ago. I think it was called “Riddle of the Desert Mummies.”
Secular accounts of the Scythians are always vague about their origins and later destinations. This is not surprising because their Israelite origins would be easily seen if their full history was examined. The Discover article states: “Beginning around 800 BC, the Scythians thundered across the Central Asian steppes. The Scythians’ exploits struck fear into the hearts of the ancient Greeks and Persians.” It adds “their art and culture had spread far beyond the steppes of central Asia” [and that] “they faded away around A.D. 100.” Let’s consider these statements in a biblical context.
The ten tribes of Israel were exiled from the ancient Promised Land in the 8th century B.C. When their capital city, Samaria, fell circa 721 BC, the king of Assyria found that the kingdom of Israel had “reverted to the wild” and there is no mention of any Israelites being present in the land other than at Samaria during the time of the final Assyrian invasion (II Kings 17:5-6, 24-26). Hosea 1:10 prophesied that although God was angry at the Israelites for their sins and that he would exile them from the Promised Land, God also promised that he would vastly multiply the populations of their tribes after their exile!. Daniel 9:7 confirms the ten tribes were scattered into many regions both near and far from the region of Persia. Many of the Scythian tribes were called “Saka” or “Sacae.” In other words, they were named after “Isaac,” their patriarch, just as Genesis 21:12 foretold would happen. Scythian self-portrayals on their ornate gold artwork confirms that they were bearded Semites/Caucasians.
The Scythians were indeed feared by other nations because of their numbers and power. The mighty Persian empire tried twice to invade Scythian regions (in the Eastern Europe/Black Sea region and in the region east of the Caspian Sea), and both wars ended in disasters for the Persians. The Scythians periodically aided their brother tribes who later formed the Parthian Empire in their many wars repelling aggressions from the Roman Empire. The Discover article noted that the Scythians must have had relatively-advanced techniques as one of the Scythian mummies “bore some evidence of battlefield surgery.”
The Discover article states that “the Scythians were a network of culturally-similar tribes that ranged from Siberia to Egypt…and faded away around 100 A.D.” (emphasis added). Clearly, these Scythian tribes all had to have a common origin to be “culturally similar.” Their common origin was the ancient kingdom of Israel in the Promised Land. The Jews originated from the Kingdom of Judah in the Promised Land, but the ten-tribes of the kingdom of Israel were a different (but related) people. The kingdom of Israel was also considerably larger than the Jews of Judah even in biblical times. The Discover article opines that the Scythians “did not have a written language,” but that depends on “which Scythians” one is discussing. The famous Greek writer, Herodotus, noted that many different tribes lived in Scythian regions (The History, 4.16-25). Some were stable agriculturalists who exported food and grains (Zenaide Ragozin’s book, Media, records the city of Athens imported 600,000 bushels of Scythian corn annually) while other tribes were backward with very odd customs. Herodotus notes that some of the bizarre peoples living in the Scythian regions were “not Scythian at all.” Herodotus also gives unintentional support to the conclusion that the Sacae Scythians were the relocated ten tribes of Israel. He notes that the Scythians would not allow pigs in their country at all (4.63). Who but relocated Israelites would have such a “kosher” custom? Herodotus also records that one Scythian king was named “Saulius.” Who but relocated Israelites would have a king named after Saul, the very first king of the Israelites?
The easternmost Scythians were sunworshippers who had descended from Israelites who had originally been taken captive by the Assyrians. Captive peoples would best be kept suppressed if they remained illiterate so one would expect this to be more common among the eastern-most Scythians. The westernmost Scythians (in the Black Sea regions) were descended from the Israelites who voluntarily migrated from the old promised Land and, thereby, escaped an Assyrian captivity. These were the Scythians who had extensive commercial contracts with the Greeks, and they were surely literate. Indeed, many Scythians could have been literate and we would not know it from their remaining artifacts If they wrote on parchment, animal skins, etc., these writings would long ago have decayed into the soil. A British writer in 1875, Col. J.C. Gawler cited the written observation of the classical Greek writer, Epiphanius, that “the laws, customs and manners of the Scythians were received by other nations as the standards of policy, civility and polite learning.” This statement is found on p. 5 of Gawler’s work “Our Scythian Ancestors Identified with Israel.” I doubt that a nation so lauded by a Greek writer would be illiterate.
Hosea 1:10 prophesied the ten tribes of Israel would become too numerous to count in their Asian exile. Josephus, the Jewish historian who lived in the 1st century AD, wrote the ten tribes were, indeed, too numerous to count during his lifetime (Antiquities, XI, V, 2). Anyone who has the idea that the ten tribes of Israel were abandoned by God or that they “died out” is seriously mistaken! God sent a message to the ten tribes via Jeremiah a century after they went into exile and their location was given as to the “north” of Jerusalem (Jeremiah 3:11-12). Straight north of Jerusalem lies the Black Sea region, which was then the home of a large mass of Sacae Scythians! In Jeremiah 51:5, God plainly states that he would NOT forsake the ten tribes in their exile. Josephus wrote the ten tribes were too numerous to count in his lifetime, which included 100 A.D–the very time in which the Discover magazine article says the Scythians “faded away.” Obviously, if Josephus records the ten tribes’ population was beyond count at the very time that the Discover magazine article says they somehow “faded away,” something isn’t adding up.
The Scythians didn’t “fade away” at all! They simply became known by other names as they migrated elsewhere. The Greeks had called them “Scythians,” but in Roman times they eventually came to be called “Goths” or “Dacians” in the Black Sea and Balkans region. The Discover magazine article acknowledges that blond hair can be found on Scythian mummies, and blond hair was also a trait of the Goths. When the vast empire of Parthia collapsed circa 227 AD, its millions of people fled mostly toward Europe via the Caucasus Mountains (becoming known as “Caucasians” as a result). The Scythians, who were fellow tribesmen to the Parthians, joined that migration into Europe. They became known as Goths, Germans, Saxons, Jats, etc. in their new homelands in Europe (their former Scythian/Parthian names in Asia were the Gauthei, Sacae/Saka, Kermans/Germanii, Jats, etc.). Secular historians (steeped in evolutionary fables) do not want to find the ten tribes of Israel because doing so would validate the Bible’s narratives, accounts and prophecies. Doing so would prove the Bible’s God is real and that the Bible is his Divine Word. Secular mankind is not willing to acknowledge this fact (as Paul wrote in Romans 1:28–“they did not like to retain God in their knowledge”), so secular accounts say Israelite tribes “fade away” to discourage anyone from locating them.
However, the truth can be suppressed only so long. It will be abundantly revealed in the years ahead that the modern western democracies are mostly the descendants of the biblical ten tribes of Israel. God has not gone away into hiding. He is actively fulfilling many Bible prophecies today and he is guiding world geopolitics even now to fulfill the “end game” prophecies of our age. For evidence of many fulfilled prophecies in recent and current events, you can read “Are We Living in the Biblical Latter Days?” available for free at this website. The abundant (and fascinating) evidence re: the Israelite origins of the Scythians can be found in my book, Israel’s Lost Empires, available at the book links of this website.