Ark of the Covenant: Prophetic Ramifications

by COGwriter

Many people have wondered about the Ark of the Covenant.

Hollywood even made a famous movie called Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Could there be any prophetic ramifications of the Ark of the Covenant?

Could it be in Ethiopia?

What about Ireland?

What about Mount Zion?

What does the Bible teach?

The Bible (NKJV version) uses term 'the ark of the covenant' 43 times. It is called the 'ark of the testimony' 13 times, 'ark of God 37 times, and 'ark of the Lord' 37 times. So, 130 times in the NKJV version of the Bible.

Here is a link to a related sermon: Exodus 25: Ark of the Covenant and the Mercy Seat.

Exodus

Now in the 25th chapter of Exodus, God makes the first scriptural mention of what is known as the Ark of the Covenant:

10 "And they shall make an ark of acacia wood; two and a half cubits shall be its length, a cubit and a half its width, and a cubit and a half its height. 11 And you shall overlay it with pure gold, inside and out you shall overlay it, and shall make on it a molding of gold all around. 12 You shall cast four rings of gold for it, and put them in its four corners; two rings shall be on one side, and two rings on the other side. 13 And you shall make poles of acacia wood, and overlay them with gold. 14 You shall put the poles into the rings on the sides of the ark, that the ark may be carried by them. 15 The poles shall be in the rings of the ark; they shall not be taken from it. 16 And you shall put into the ark the Testimony which I will give you. (Exodus 25:10-15)

Now notice the following:

30 And Moses said to the children of Israel, "See, the Lord has called by name Bezalel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah; 31 and He has filled him with the Spirit of God, in wisdom and understanding, in knowledge and all manner of workmanship, 32 to design artistic works, to work in gold and silver and bronze, 33 in cutting jewels for setting, in carving wood, and to work in all manner of artistic workmanship.

34 "And He has put in his heart the ability to teach, in him and Aholiab the son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan. 35 He has filled them with skill to do all manner of work of the engraver and the designer and the tapestry maker, in blue, purple, and scarlet thread, and fine linen, and of the weaver — those who do every work and those who design artistic works. (Exodus 35:30-35)

God gave special ability to the craftsmen to make the Ark of the Covenant and related items.

Before going further, perhaps it should be pointed out that Dr. Doug Petrovich, author of, The World’s Oldest Alphabet: Hebrew As The Language Of The Proto-Consonantal Script, was interviewed, which I watched (http://www.biblearchaeology.org/post/2017/01/08/ABR-Associate-Dr-Doug-Petrovich-Reveals-Ancient-Moses-Inscription.aspx?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIiuHf2Iq-4AIVlYxpCh1SMwScEAAYASAAEgLtqPD_BwE#Article) claims, and shows various artifacts, the connections between Hebrew letters and Egyptian hieroglyphics indicates that the Hebrew alphabet was developed from Egyptian hieroglyphics. He also said that there was an ancient inscription, dating to near the time of the Exodus that mentioned the name Ahisamach, the father of one of the craftsmen who would build the Tabernacle (Exodus 35:34).

The Ark of the Covenant
Depiction of Levites Carrying the Ark of the Covenant

Here information in the New Testament about it:

1 Then indeed, even the first covenant had ordinances of divine service and the earthly sanctuary. 2 For a tabernacle was prepared: the first part, in which was the lampstand, the table, and the showbread, which is called the sanctuary; 3 and behind the second veil, the part of the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of All, 4 which had the golden censer and the ark of the covenant overlaid on all sides with gold, in which were the golden pot that had the manna, Aaron's rod that budded, and the tablets of the covenant; 5 and above it were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the mercy seat. Of these things we cannot now speak in detail. 6 Now when these things had been thus prepared, the priests always went into the first part of the tabernacle, performing the services. 7 But into the second part the high priest went alone once a year, not without blood, which he offered for himself and for the people's sins committed in ignorance; 8 the Holy Spirit indicating this, that the way into the Holiest of All was not yet made manifest while the first tabernacle was still standing. 9 It was symbolic for the present time in which both gifts and sacrifices are offered which cannot make him who performed the service perfect in regard to the conscience-- 10 concerned only with foods and drinks, various washings, and fleshly ordinances imposed until the time of reformation. 11 But Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation. 12 Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. 13 For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, 14 how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? (Hebrews 9:1-14)

So, Christians do not need the earthly Ark for cleansing of sins.

Ideas About the Ark of the Covenant

Many have speculated or made assertions about the Ark of the Covenant.

Here is a claim about the location of the biblical Ark of the Covenant:

Ark of Covenant resting beneath Temple Mount?
With Mideast in turmoil, new evidence Solomon made provisions to hide
WND – Sept 22, 2012

One of the persistent theories about the whereabouts of the Ark is that it lay buried in secret tunnels and passageways constructed by King Solomon for the specific purpose of keeping it from enemies who might one day capture and destroy the Temple.

Now there is compelling new evidence that’s just what happened – and that the Ark still rests beneath the chamber known as the Holy of Holies, moved there through an elaborate machine constructed under the direction of Solomon long before the invasion of the Babylonians and the sacking of the Temple.  http://www.wnd.com/2012/09/ark-of-covenant-resting-beneath-temple-mount/

Here is something related to the late Ron Wyatt:

The Ark of the Covenant Special Article

AT THIS TIME, WYATT ARCHAEOLOGICAL RESEARCH CAN PROVIDE NO CONCLUSIVE EVIDENCE REGARDING THE DISCOVERY OF THE ARK OF THE COVENANT.

There are many claims being made today as to the location of the Ark of the Covenant and the purpose of this site is to give you an opportunity to hear Ron Wyatt’s story as he has told it and his wife has written it...

One day in Jerusalem, after the swelling in Ron’s legs and feet went down a bit, he decided to go sightseeing in the immediate area around his hotel near the Damascus Gate. Walking along an ancient stone quarry, known to some as “the Calvary Escarpment,” he began conversing with a local authority about Roman antiquities. At one point, they stopped walking, and Ron’s left hand pointed to a site being used as a trash dump and he stated, “That’s Jeremiah’s Grotto and the Ark of the Covenant is in there.” Even though these words had come from his own mouth and his own hand had pointed, he had not consciously done or said these things. In fact, it was the first time he had ever thought about excavating for the Ark.

The man with him, quite out of character, also reacted strangely. He said, “That’s wonderful! We want you to excavate, and we’ll furnish your permits, put you up in a place to stay and even furnish your meals!”

But Ron didn’t know what to think – he knew it was a “supernatural” experience, but was it of God, or was it of “someone else”? ...

Jerusalem is situated on 2 hills, traditionally referred to as “Mt. Moriah” and Mt. Zion”. ...

The quarry which contains the site Ron was to excavate is part of the northern extension of Mt. Moriah. ...

The site Ron pointed to was along the quarried face (escarpment) of “Mt. Moriah”. This cliff-face is referred to by some as “the Calvary escarpment” because it contains the “skull-face” that many believe was “Golgotha” or “Calvary” where Christ was crucified.

It also contains the site traditionally called “Jeremiah’s Grotto”, the “Garden Tomb” (where many believe Christ was buried) and St. Etienne which contains a large complex of Jewish tombs dating to the 1st and 2nd temple periods cut into the side of the mountain. ...

It was January, 1979 when Ron and the boys returned to Jerusalem. ...They dug straight down along the cliff face, forming a steep wall with the earth they removed. Almost immediately, Ron noticed a “shelf-like” niche cut into the face of the cliff. Digging down further, he discovered there were 3 of these “niches” cut into the face of the cliff with a smaller one on the right side.

He was convinced that these were cut into the cliff-face to hold “signs” or notices. And because of the location – in the vicinity of the “skull-face”, and because there were 3 of these, he believed they were where the notices stating the crime of the crucifixion victim in 3 languages were placed. ...

By this time, Ron and the boys had ... had begun in January of 1979 ... Of course, they weren’t working constantly ... 2:00 pm, Wednesday, January 6, 1982. Shining his flashlight down through the massive pile of large rocks, his eye caught a glimpse of something shiny. ...

Crawling slowly and painfully over the rocks to the rear of the chamber, he saw a stone case extending through the rocks. ...

When he realized that the crack in the ceiling was the end of the crack he had found in the elevated cross-hole many feet above him, and the black substance was blood which had fallen through the crack and into the stone case, he KNEW the Ark was in the stone case. But the most overwhelming realization was that Christ’s Blood had actually fallen onto the Mercy Seat. ...

The objects he saw in that chamber that he feels confident in identifying are: the Ark of the Covenant in the Stone case;

  1. the Table of Shewbread;
  2. the Golden Altar of Incense that was in front of the veil;
  3. the Golden Censer;
  4. the 7-branched Candlestick holder, (which didn’t have candles but had tiny, bowlike golden oil lamps which are built into the tips of the candlestick);
  5. a very large sword;
  6. an Ephod;
  7. a Miter with an ivory pomegranate on the tip;
  8. a brass shekel weight; numerous oil lamps;

and a brass ring which appeared to be for hanging a curtain or something similar. There are more objects, but these are all Ron could positively identify. https://wyattmuseum.com/the-ark-of-the-covenant-special-article/2011-338 retrieved 04/04/19

One COG leader I discussed this with mentioned that he believed Ron Wyatt got his information from demons and that he really did not see the Ark. Also, be careful about believing that this was the site of Jesus' execution--specifically because "the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city" (John 19:20), whereas the site Ron Wyatt was in was in the ancient city (though some think that it could have been outside the original walls of Jerusalem).

Now notice another view of the Ark’s location:

9 January 2014

livescience.com – A newly translated Hebrew text claims to reveal where treasures from King Solomon’s temple were hidden and discusses the fate of the Ark of the Covenant itself.

But unlike the Indiana Jones movie “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” the text leaves the exact location of the Ark unclear and states that it, and the other treasures, “shall not be revealed until the day of the coming of the Messiah son of David …” putting it out of reach of any would-be treasure seeker…

The newly translated text, called “Treatise of the Vessels” (Massekhet Kelim in Hebrew), says the “treasures were concealed by a number of Levites and prophets,” writes James Davila, a professor at the University of St. Andrews, in an article in the book “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha More Noncanonical Scriptures Volume 1″ (William B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 2013).

“Some of these (treasures) were hidden in various locations in the Land of Israel and in Babylonia, while others were delivered into the hands of the angels Shamshiel, Michael, Gabriel and perhaps Sariel …” writes Davila in his article.

The treatise is similar in some ways to the metallic “Copper Scroll,” one of the Dead Sea Scrolls found near the site of Qumran in the West Bank. The Copper Scroll also discusses the location of hidden treasure, although not from Solomon’s Temple…The Copper Scroll, which dates back around 1,900 years, and is made of copper, shows several “striking parallels” with the newly translated treatise, Davila said.  http://topinfopost.com/2014/01/09/the-ark-of-covenant-revealed-in-hebrew-text

I have heard the Hebrew claim years before the above came out.

Notice something from late 2018:

Archaeologists shed new light on Biblical site linked to the Ark of the Covenant

Archaeologists believe they have shed new light on Biblical site linked to the Ark of the Covenant in the heart of Israel.

Excavations in Israel are shedding new light on the history of a Biblical site linked to the Ark of the Covenant.

Specifically, archaeologists are focusing their attention on the ancient site of Kiriath-Jearim, which is mentioned in the Bible as one of the places where the Ark of the Covenant stood.

According to Israeli news site Haaretz, experts are convinced that the site of Kiriath-Jearim is a hill on the outskirts of Abu Ghosh, a village near Jerusalem. Excavations in 2017 offered a fascinating glimpse into the history of the hill, where the church of Our Lady of the Ark of the Covenant now stands. …

The Ark of the Covenant continues to be a source of fascination. The Ark was eventually brought from Kiriath-Jearim to Jerusalem by King David but disappeared when the city was destroyed by the Babylonians in 587BC, prompting multiple theories about its fate. While some people believe that the Ark’s gold was melted down, there have also been claims that it was taken to cave on Mount Nebo, Jordan, or to Ethiopia. 12/20/18 https://www.news.com.au/technology/science/archaeology/archaeologists-shed-new-light-on-biblical-site-linked-to-the-ark-of-the-covenant/news-story/54d6e1199f6805869ef21ea9da968e32

There have been several places speculated as the final earthly resting place of the Ark of the Covenant.

As far Kiriath-Jearim/Kirjath-jearim goes it is several miles west-north-west of Jerusalem. The Ark was there for a time, and then it went to Jerusalem.

What happened was that it was in Jerusalem, but the children of Israel brought it to a battle and lost it (1 Samuel 4-6).

Notice something from The Bible Story, Volume IV from the old Worldwide Church of God related to what happened later:

David Brings the Ark to Jerusalem

With the Philistines again defeated through God’s help, David was for a time free to apply himself to matters other than war. For one thing, he wanted to bring the ark of the covenant to Jerusalem from the hill town of Kirjath-jearim. There it had been left many years before, after the Philistines had fearfully sent it back following their miserable experiences with it. (I Samuel 6.)

Traveling with many Israelite leaders and musicians, and with a magnificent procession of thousands of soldiers to put down any possible trouble from the Philistines, David went to the home of a man named Abinadab in Kirjath-jearim, about eight miles west of Jerusalem. (II Samuel 6:1-2.) The ark had been in that home for several decades, where it was watched over by a priest named Eleazar, one of Abinadab’s sons. (I Samuel 7:1-2).

The ark was loaded on a cart that had been built especially for the purpose of transporting it, although that was not the means by which God meant it to be carried. (Exodus 25:10-16; Exodus 37:1-5.) Uzzah and Ahio, two of Abinadab’s sons, drove the ox team that pulled the cart. (II Samuel 6:3.) To give an air of celebration to the bringing of the ark to Jerusalem, David’s musicians walked before the cart and played their harps, tambourines, cymbals, drums and psalteries. David marched behind the cart, and behind him came the thousands who had accompanied him to obtain the ark.

As the colorful procession neared Jerusalem, one of the oxen stumbled in a rut. The cart was jerked so severely that it appeared that the ark might tumble over. Without giving a thought to what the result would be, Uzzah reached out to steady the ark with one hand. That was the last act of his life. (II Samuel 6:4-7.) 

The ark was to be handled only by the poles that were extended through its rings, and touching it was strictly forbidden. (Numbers 4:15.) God made no exception with Uzzah, even though that man’s intentions may not have been consciously wrong. Uzzah should have known the consequences, for the Levites had copies of God’s Word. They were required to know what they were doing and to keep the Scriptures always before them. (Deuteronomy 17:18-20.)

When David saw that Uzzah was dead, he was very grieved. The happy temperament of the whole procession sank. Thinking that God may have been displeased because of the moving of the ark, David decided not to try to take it any farther. He directed that it should be left at the nearby home of an acquaintance named Obed-edom, who lived on the western outskirts of Jerusalem. (II Samuel 6:8-10.)

As the weeks went by, David became more concerned about the ark. He feared he might be responsible for bringing some kind of curse on Obed-edom by leaving the ark with him. Three months after Uzzah’s death, upon inquiring about Obed-edom, David was pleasantly relieved to learn that the man had recently come into a state of prosperity and that everything was going well for all his family. Some members of his family who had been ill were enjoying the best of health because they had been suddenly and miraculously healed. David could only conclude that God had blessed the people in Obed-edom’s home because of the presence of the ark there. (II Samuel 6:11.) This caused him to decide to go at once to bring it to Jerusalem.

The Right Way to Rejoice

Having planned and prepared more carefully this time, David and the high priest instructed Levites in how to handle the ark. (I Chronicles 15:2.) They carried it on foot as they should, holding the poles on their shoulders. Musicians and singers went ahead of the ark, and there was constant music and happy shouting. As before, a great throng followed. Occasionally the ark bearers would stop with their load and burnt offerings would be made nearby on temporary altars that had been built along the route into Jerusalem.

As the procession entered the city, David felt constrained to express his gay and thankful emotions by dancing. Tossing aside his royal tunic, he broke into a very strenuous series of surprisingly graceful leaps and gyrations to the accompaniment of the musicians. The crowd was pleased. (II Samuel 6:12-15.) Probably God was pleased, too, because the Bible says that we should praise the Creator by song, instrumental music and proper dancing. (Psalm 33:1-3).

Since the Ark of the Covenant was removed from Kirjath-jearim, it would seem that it would not have been taken back there for safe-keeping, but perhaps that was a possibility.

As far as a possible Ethiopian location goes, the main story that the Ethiopians have tended to believe contradicts scripture. Also, noting what happened to Uzzah, it would not seem that the Ark would have made it to Ethiopia.

Nevertheless, each year, there are parades in Ethiopia were a replica of the Ark is carried (and some of these ‘replicas’ are only a few inches thick and tend to be covered up. Notice a photo from Pixabay of such an event:


Photo via Pixabay

Here is something I read from an account about the Ark and Ethiopia in 1710 (and yes, the English is hard to read as the source is difficult and some words clearly are spelled incorrectly as far as we in the 21st century are concerned as it has an “f” often where we would have an “s”):

Then the aforesaid Book proceeds to give an Account how the first begotten, at the Initi’gation of Azariah the Son of Sadoc the fable about Prieft, took an Oath to one another to carry away with them the Ark. Ark of the Covenant, which they call’d the Heavenly Sion and that going by Night to the Temple, Providence fo ordering it, they found the Gates open, and put the Ark upon a Cart, and being attended by abundance of People, with much Wealth, and great Acclamations, they travell’d to fwiftly, that Solomon, who went to recover the Ark, could not overtake them, and with the fame Expedition they crofs’d the ‘Red Sea as joyfully as the Children of Ifrael had done, with only this Difference, that the Ifraelites pafs’d it on Foot without being wet, and they flying in their Chariots ; fo that the Sea obey’d the “former, and the Air was fubfervient to the latter.

This Book farther tells us, that when Queen Maqueda underfood that her Son already made King was coming, and brought along with him all the firft begotten, as alfo the Ark of the Heavemly God of Sion, (he went out with great Solemnity to meet them, and plac’d the Ark in the Temp!e of the Laud of Maqueda, all the People of Ethiopia receiving the Knowledge of the true God (Balthazar Telles, John Stevens. The Travels of the Jesuits in Ethiopia. J Knapton, 1710, University of Lausanne, p. 69).

The above would not seem biblically possible, but the Ethiopians have long believed that the Ark is in their country and that a son of Solomon, who is not mentioned in the Bible, brought it there.

However, the Bible shows that well after Solomon’s sons would have died, that the Ark was still in Jerusalem:

2 Now Solomon assembled the elders of Israel and all the heads of the tribes, the chief fathers of the children of Israel, in Jerusalem, that they might bring the ark of the covenant of the Lord up from the City of David, which is Zion. 3 Therefore all the men of Israel assembled with the king at the feast, which was in the seventh month. 4 So all the elders of Israel came, and the Levites took up the ark. 5 Then they brought up the ark, the tabernacle of meeting, and all the holy furnishings that were in the tabernacle. The priests and the Levites brought them up. 6 Also King Solomon, and all the congregation of Israel who were assembled with him before the ark, were sacrificing sheep and oxen that could not be counted or numbered for multitude. 7 Then the priests brought in the ark of the covenant of the Lord to its place, into the inner sanctuary of the temple, to the Most Holy Place, under the wings of the cherubim. 8 For the cherubim spread their wings over the place of the ark, and the cherubim overshadowed the ark and its poles. 9 The poles extended so that the ends of the poles of the ark could be seen from the holy place, in front of the inner sanctuary; but they could not be seen from outside. And they are there to this day. 10 Nothing was in the ark except the two tablets which Moses put there at Horeb, when the Lord made a covenant with the children of Israel, when they had come out of Egypt. (2 Chronicles 5:2-10)

The "there to this day" comment may have been inserted by Hezekiah or someone past him. Notice further absolute biblical proof that one of Solomon'direct s sons did not take the Ark:

35:1 Now Josiah kept a Passover to the LORD in Jerusalem, and they slaughtered the Passover lambs on the fourteenth day of the first month. 2 And he set the priests in their duties and encouraged them for the service of the house of the LORD. 3 Then he said to the Levites who taught all Israel, who were holy to the LORD: “Put the holy ark in the house which Solomon the son of David, king of Israel, built. It shall no longer be a burden on your shoulders. Now serve the LORD your God and His people Israel (2 Chronicles 35:1-3).


Via Wikipedia

Thus, if the Ark of the Covenant possibly made it to Ethiopia it was not until well AFTER the Ethiopians normally claim it first came there.

But there in another Ethiopian story:

Is the Ark of the Covenant in Africa or Is It an Anti-Semitic Hoax?

December 4, 2018

A theory claiming the Ark of the Covenant is in Ethiopia has resurfaced. The theory is unproven and seems to be based more in its author’s personal agenda, deep within Replacement Theology rather than archaeology and fact.

Bob Cornuke, a former police investigator, and author of Cornuke theorized in his book In Search of the Ark of the Covenant that around 701 BCE, during the reign of King Manasseh, the Ark was taken from Solomon’s Temple and carried away to Elephantine Island in Egypt. Cornuke points to ruins of a temple that according to his claims, matches the dimensions of Solomon’s temple in Jerusalem. Cornuke believes this was an emergency temple built to house the Ark. The Egyptian temple was destroyed in 410 BCE, at which point Cornuke believes the Ark was moved to Ethiopia. …

Cornuke spoke with a 105-year-old priest who once was the Administrator at St. Mary’s of Zion who claimed he was allowed to see the Ark during a transition period after the death of a previous Guardian and described it as “a gold box with two winged angels on top.”

Cornuke admitted that there was no proof the Ark was in Axum.

“At this juncture, we cannot say with certainty that it is, but neither can we say for certain that it isn’t,” Cornuke wrote. “What we have concluded is that St. Mary’s of Zion church in Axum, Ethiopia, is the resting place either of an incredible replica of the biblical Ark of the Covenant, or, of the actual Ark of the Covenant itself.” …

Harry Moskoff, a writer/journalist and investigative archaeologist, disagrees with Cornuke’s theory. In his book, The Ark Report: The Ark of the Covenant and the Tunnels of Israel, Moskoff discusses his theory of the ark’s location based research as well as ancient Jewish sources.

“The Ark is where it has always been for the past 2,700 years; in a sealed room under the Temple Mount, told Breaking Israel News. “The Talmud states this explicitly in several places. There are about 50 tunnels under the Temple Mount that were mapped out about 150 years ago by Sir Charles Warren but never fully explored. Maimonides describes the Ark as being about 45 feet underground at the end of several mazes.”

“Jewish sources state that King Hosea hid the Ark 37 years before the destruction of the First Temple, Moskoff said. “Jerusalem was not even being threatened but he did so out of divine guidance. Based on my sources, I believe it is directly below where the Holy of Holies was. They needed the Ark in order to do the Temple service but they also needed to hide it. Since it was in the same place just buried.”

Moskoff emphasized that the history of the Temple is well-documented in Jewish sources and there are no claims that the Ark, the central feature of the Temple, ever left Jerusalem.

“Persian King Cyrus listed everything taken from the First Temple and the Ark was not on the list,” Moskoff said. “Even when Ezra and Nehemiah built the Second Temple they couldn’t find the Ark. The Talmud states that there were five things from the First Temple that were missing from the Second Temple, and the Ark was one of those things. The Holy of Holies was completely empty.” …

Moskoff suggested that the church in Ethiopia may contain an artifact though not the Ark of the Covenant containing the stone tablets given to Moses on Mount Sinai.

“The Talmud says that duplicates of many of the Temple utensils were made in case they became ritually impure,” Moskoff said. “Though it is not mentioned explicitly and it is highly unlikely, it could be that a duplicate Ark was made and that is what is in Ethiopia. We also know that the Egyptians made things resembling the Ark of the Covenant. There might be something in Ethiopia but it is certainly not the Ark of the Covenant.” …

Moskoff believes the motives behind Cornuke’s theory is based in Replacement Theology much more than a historical curiosity.

“This is Replacement Theology with a pretty cover story that really makes no sense,” Moskoff said. “The Arabs and anyone who does not want the Temple to be rebuilt try very hard to put as much distance between the Jews and the Temple Mount as possible, even going as far as to contradicting archaeological evidence and historical accounts. It is based in theology but has real-world anti-Israel political implications.”

Moskoff’s theory and search for the ark are based in facts and research but his motives are religious.

“The Ark is what brings the Shechina to the Temple Mount,” Moskoff said. “Without the Ark, the Temple Mount is not holy; not to the Jews and not to anyone.” https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/118082/ark-covenant-africa-anti-semitic-hoax/

Perhaps I should mention that I watched a documentary on this other way the Ark supposedly got to Ethiopia featuring someone other than Dr. Cornuke, plus have read Robert Cornuke's book about a lot of this. It is claimed that certain temple implements went to Elephantine Island in Egypt, and remain there, so some consider this as evidence that some Levitical priests did get to Elephantine Island in Egypt and on its way to Ethiopia.

So, if the Ark went to Ethiopia (which is highly doubtful), maybe it first was in Egypt and moved by Levites, like Robert Cornuke seems to believe. That may be at least biblically plausible. But, I and others are not convinced.

More likely one or more temple implements (or copies of implements) and/or replica of the Ark somehow ended up in Ethiopia. And then the legend sprang from that. It is also not much of stretch to think that some temple implement arrived and someone made a replica.

Currently, there is a monk from Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church (now distantly affiliated with the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria) that oversees the chapel that the claimed Ark of the Covenant is at. The guardian monk is appointed for life by his predecessor before the predecessor dies. If the incumbent guardian dies without naming a successor, then the monks of the monastery hold an election to select the new guardian. Supposedly, this monk, and he alone, can look at the Ark.


Chapel of the Tablet, Axum, Ethiopia
(Photo by JensiS65 via Wikipedia)

I do not currently believe that the Ark is there, but a replica may well be.

If the Ark exists on the earth, a location in the land of Israel makes more sense.

The following from Jeremiah seems to suggest that it may be found:

14 "Return, O backsliding children," says the Lord; "for I am married to you. I will take you, one from a city and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion. 15 And I will give you shepherds according to My heart, who will feed you with knowledge and understanding. 16 Then it shall come to pass, when you are multiplied and increased in the land in those days," says the Lord, "that they will say no more, 'The ark of the covenant of the Lord.' It shall not come to mind, nor shall they remember it, nor shall they visit it, nor shall it be made anymore. 17 At that time Jerusalem shall be called The Throne of the Lord, and all the nations shall be gathered to it, to the name of the Lord, to Jerusalem. No more shall they follow the dictates of their evil hearts. 18 In those days the house of Judah shall walk with the house of Israel, and they shall come together out of the land of the north to the land that I have given as an inheritance to your fathers. (Jeremiah 3:14-18)

Since the Ark of the Covenant has not clearly been visited since the destruction of the first temple (the temple was destroyed in 587/586 B.C.. and the high priest used to only visit it once per year on the Day of Atonement), the above may be suggesting that before the millennial kingdom that the Ark may get a lot of visitors for a time.

Now, one concern that I have had is that if the Ark of the Covenant is found, this could possibly get more of the Jews to support the ecumenical end-time religion that will call itself Catholic. This would be consistent with biblical (Revelation 13:4,8; 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12) and Catholic prophecies (see further below).

The Bible is clear that the Ark of the Covenant is or will be in heaven:

19 Then the temple of God was opened in heaven, and the ark of His covenant was seen in His temple. And there were lightnings, noises, thunderings, an earthquake, and great hail. (Revelation 11:19)

Now, since the Ark is NOT mentioned in Revelation 4 or 5 in the visions related to God's throne and heaven, it either was there and not mentioned or it came up between the events of Revelation 5 and 11:19.

It has also been suggested that the physical ark of the covenant that the children of Israel had was patterned on one in heaven, thus it could still be on earth. If it will be found, there is a small chance that the Continuing Church of God may have some involvement with it as we are considering involvement in an archeological project in Jerusalem in the area known as Mt. Zion.

Notice also the following Islamic view of the Ark:

The Book of Revelation says the Ark is in the temple of God in heaven (Rev. 11:19). Muslim scholars say it will be found near the end of times by the Mahdi – a messianic figure in Islam. http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=102119

It is interesting, however, that many of the Muslims believe that their Mahdi will rise up after the finding of the Ark (the Mahdi of Islamic prophecy seems to be the same one that the Bible indicates will be the final King of the South). Events seem to be happening in the Arab nations that align with the rising up of such a leader. Perhaps, if the Ark is publicly shown, he could point to it as proof that his timing for rising up was prophesied. We will see.

Interestingly, many Roman Catholics believe that Enoch and Elijah will not appear until after the discovery of the ark of the covenant.

This is supposedly related to 2 Machabees (sometimes spelled Maccabees). 2 Machabees is another of the "deuterocanoconical" books of the Old Testament Apocrypha.

The specific passage in 2 Machabees is:

4 And it was in the same writing, how the prophet commanded by the Divine
answer made to him, that the tabernacle, & the ark should follow in
company with him, till he came forth into the mount in which Moyses
ascended, and saw the inheritance of God.

5 And Jeremie coming thither found a place of a caue: & he brought the
tabernacle, and the ark, and the altar of incense in thither, and stopped the
door.

6 And there came certain withal, that followed, to Mark the place for
themselves: and they could not find it.

7 And as Jeremie understood it, blaming them he said: that the place shall be
unknown, till God gather together the congregation of the people, and become
propitious:

8 and then our Lord will show these things, and the Majesty of our Lord shall
appear, & there shall be a cloud as it was also made manifest to Moyses, and
as when Salomon prayed that the place might be sanctified to the great God, he
did manifest these things (2 Machabees 2:4-8. The Original And True Douay Old
Testament Of Anno Domini 1610 Volume 2 Prepared and Edited by Dr. William
von Peters, Ph.D. Copyright © 2005, Dr. William G. von Peters. Ph.D. 2005
copyright assigned to VSC Corp.).

There is a rabbinic interpretation of the above passage that claims that this ark has to do with the coming of the Messiah. But it needs to be understood that this passage of Machabees does not mention Enoch nor Elijah. Furthermore, here is a Jewish interpretation, "The Ark is mentioned in only one passage in the Apocrypha (II Macc. ii. 4-10), which contains a legend to the effect that the prophet Jeremiah, "being warned of God," took the Ark, and the tabernacle, and the altar of incense, and buried them in a cave on Mount Sinai, informing those of his followers who wished to find the place that it should remain unknown "until the time that God should gather His people again together, and receive them unto mercy." " (Ark of the Covenant, Jewish Encyclopedia of 1906). But 2 Maccabees does not state Mount Sinai.

Yet, notice the following Catholic view, which is claimed to be based upon an interpretation of that passage in 2 Machabees which is that the two witnesses (which they often consider will be Enoch and Elijah) will rise up after the Ark is found:

Bl. Dionysus of Luetzenberg…prophecies:

After the discovery of the Ark of the Covenant, Enoch and Elias will restore the Holy Sacrament of the Altar; Because of the fact that the Ark of the Covenant will be in the possession of the two holy prophets and not in Antichrist’s hands, the Jews will recognize that Jesus is the true Messias…”

( Luetzenberg, Antichristus Chapter 29 as cited in Birch D.A. Trial, Tribulation & Triumph. Queenship Publishing, Goleta (CA), 1996, p. 509)

Since neither the Bible nor the passage is 2 Machabees states that Enoch and Elijah will come "After the discovery of the Ark of the Covenant," those who believe that Ark must first be found simply will not be able to discern the true witnesses from God. Presuming the Ark is not recognized as found, this would be a reason that Catholics could point to in efforts discrediting God's two witnesses (see also Who Are The Two Witnesses?).

Now the Bible is clear that the Ark of His Covenant will be in heaven:

Then the temple of God was opened in heaven, and the ark of His covenant was seen in His temple. And there were lightnings, noises, thunderings, an earthquake, and great hail. (Revelation 11:19)

And it probably is there now.

Others say that Zion was really on the eastern side side of Jerusalem, and thus, if there is a physical Ark remaining on earth, that may be where the Ark could be or end up.

Now, since both Islamic and Catholic prophecies suggest that it will be found, it is possible that some of them will point to the Ark in Ethiopia (some believe Ethiopia has the original Ark, while others believe that it has an early copy) or one in Jerusalem (or elsewhere) as proof that their prophecies are to be fulfilled. Or perhaps to a different location in the future. Or Catholics may claim that if the Ark of the Covenant has not been found, that some will claim that this is additional proof that the real two witnesses are not God’s two witnesses. Notice that the Catholics want to place their practices on it (by Holy Sacrament, they seem to mean their Eucharistic practices; here is an article about their origins: Marcus, the Marcosians, & Mithraism: Developers of the Eucharist?), these are the same Catholics that also keep trying to gain control of the Church of God on Jerusalem’s Western Hill.

Adolf Hitler?

Before going further, it may be of interest to note that former Worldwide Church of God members, Stanley Rader and Robert Kuhn, claimed to have written some version of the Hollywood movie called Raiders of the Lost Ark and sued the movie producers for infringement.

Anyway, in the Hollywood film, Adolf Hitler's NAZIs were looking of the Ark of the Covenant.

In real life, a subset of Hitler's supporters were tasked to look for all kinds of possible religious artifacts of interest, including the Ark of the Covenant:

Hitler’s Hunt for the Holy Grail and the Ghent Altarpiece

Why did Hitler crave the missing panel in the famous Ghent Altarpiece? Maybe because the Nazi’s paranormal research group thought the masterpiece contained a map to the Holy Grail.

12.21.13

The idea that the Nazis had teams of researchers hunting for supernatural treasures, religious relics, and entrances to a magical land of telepathic faeries and giants might sound like a bad History Channel documentary, or out-takes from an Indiana Jones movie. But despite the considerable popular interest in all things Nazi-related, and all things supernatural, relatively few people are aware of a very real organization that was the inspiration for the Indiana Jones plots: the Nazi Ahnenerbe, or the Ancestral Heritage Research and Teaching Organization.

The Ahnenerbe (which literally means “Inheritance of the Forefathers”) was a paranormal research group, established by order of SS head Heinrich Himmler on 1 July 1935. It was expanded during the Second World War on direct orders from the Fuhrer. Hitler and other top Nazi leaders’ (Himmler foremost among them) interest in the occult is well and widely documented. The Nazi Party actually began as an occult fraternity, before it morphed into a political party.

The Ahnenerbe sent expeditions all over the world. To Tibet, to search for traces of the original, uncorrupted Aryan race, and for a creature called the Yeti, what we would call the Abominable Snowman. To Ethiopia, in search of the Ark of the Covenant. To the Languedoc, to find the Holy Grail. To steal the Spear of Destiny, which Longinus used to pierce Christ’s side as Christ hung on the cross, and which disappeared from a locked vault in Nurnberg. To Iceland, to find the entrance to a magical land of telepathic giants and faeries called Thule, which Hitler and most of the Nazi brass believed was the place of origin of the Aryans, and was very real. If they could find this entrance, believed to be accessible via a secret code hidden in a Medieval Icelandic saga called The Eddas, then the Nazis might accelerate their Aryan breeding program, and recover the supernatural powers of flight, telepathy and telekinesis that they believed their ancestors in Thule possessed, and which was lost due to inter-breeding with “lesser” races. https://www.thedailybeast.com/hitlers-hunt-for-the-holy-grail-and-the-ghent-altarpiece

So, some have claimed that Adolf Hitler's SS went to Ethiopia looking for the Ark of the Covenant--and if they did (and we are not aware of firm evidence) apparently they did not take it. Presumably they would have been able to overcome the guardian monk. So, if this visit did happen, this also would tend to eliminate Ethiopia as the guardian of the chapel would have been no match of Hitler's forces.

Jewish Encyclopedia

The Jewish Encyclopedia of 1906 has the following:

ARK OF THE COVENANT(Hebrew, ,...) ...

The only mention of the Ark in the Prophets is the reference to it by Jeremiah, who, speaking in the days of Josiah (Jer. iii. 16), prophesies a time when the Ark will no longer be needed because of the righteousness of the people.

In the Psalms the Ark is twice referred to. In Ps. lxxviii. 61 its capture by the Philistines is spoken of, and the Ark is called "the strength and glory of God"; and in Ps. cxxxii. 8, it is spoken of as "the ark of the strength of the Lord." The Ark is mentioned in only one passage in the Apocrypha (II Macc. ii. 4-10), which contains a legend to the effect that the prophet Jeremiah, "being warned of God," took the Ark, and the tabernacle, and the altar of incense, and buried them in a cave on Mount Sinai, informing those of his followers who wished to find the place that it should remain unknown "until the time that God should gather His people again together, and receive them unto mercy." ...

—In Rabbinical Literature:

The Ark, by reason of its prominence in the Bible, forms an important subject of discussion by the Rabbis, a great many sayings relating to it being found throughout the Talmud and the Midrashim. They discuss the dimensions, position, material, contents, miraculous powers, final disposition, and various incidents directly or indirectly connected with the Ark. Such discussions at times embody popular legends, and are also of interest as reflecting the poetical spirit which animated many of the rabbis.

Thus it is related (B. B. 99a) that the available space in the Holy of Holies was not in the least diminished by the Ark and the cherubim—that is to say, that through the working of a miracle the Ark and the cherubim transcended the limitations of space. With regard to the position of the Ark in the Holy of Holies, there is the following picturesque saying in TanḦuma, Ḳedoshim, x.:

"Palestine is the center of the world, Jerusalem the center of Palestine, the Temple the center of Jerusalem, the Holy of Holies the center of the Temple, the Ark the center of the Holy of Holies; and in front of the Ark was a stone called , the foundation stone of the world."

In Yoma 72b, and Yer. Sheḳ. vi. 49d, it is recorded that Bezaleel made three arks which he put inside of one another. The outside and inside ones were made of gold, and measured respectively ten cubits and a fraction and eight cubits, while the middle one was of wood and measured nine cubits. Again, according to one opinion (Yer. Sheḳ. vi. 49c), there were two arks travelling with the Israelites in the wilderness. One contained the Law, in addition to the tablets of the Ten Commandments, and the other the tables of stone which Moses had broken. The one that contained the Law was placed in the "tent of meeting"; the other, containing the broken tables, accompanied the Israelites in their various excursions, and sometimes appeared on the battle-field. According to still another view, (l.c.), there was only one Ark, and it contained both the Law and the broken tables (Ber. 8b; B. B. 14b). R. Johanan in the name of Simon ben YoḦai, basing his opinion on the repetition of the word "name" () in II Sam. vi. 2, maintains that the Ark contained the Ineffable Name and all other epithets of God (B. B. l.c.; Num. R. iv. 20). Marching in the vanguard of the Israelites, the Ark leveled the hills before them (Ber. 54b; see Arnon). It carried the priests, who in turn were to carry it in the passage of the Jordan (Soṭah 35a). When King David had the Ark brought from the house of Abinadab and carried upon a new cart, the two sons of the latter, driving the cart, were tossed by an invisible agency into the air and flung to the ground again and again, until Ahitophel explained to David that this was owing to the transgression of the Law, which enjoined upon the sons of Kohath to carry the Ark upon their shoulders (Num. vii. 9; Yer. Sanh. x. 29a). When the Philistines despatched the Ark upon a cart drawn by two milch-kine without a driver, the kine not only took the Ark straightway to Beth-shemesh (I Sam. vi. 8-12), but they also sang a song (taking "wayishsharnah," v. 12, "and they took the straight way," as derived from shirah, "a song"). According to R. Meïr, their song was the verse, "I will sing unto the Lord, for he hath triumphed gloriously" (Ex. xv. 1); according to R. Johanan, "Give thanks unto the Lord, call upon his name" (Ps. cv. 1); others suggest Ps. xciii., xcvii., xcviii., xcix., or cvi.; but R. Isaac NappaḦa has a tradition, preserved in Tanna debe Eliyahu, xi. (compare 'Ab. Zarah 24b), that they sang the following processional hymn:

—Midr. Sam. xii.; 'Ab. Zarah l.c.; Gen. R. liv.

"Rise, O rise, thou acacia chest! Move along, move along in thy great beauty! Skilfully wrought with thy golden adornments! Highly revered in the sanctuary's recesses! O'ershadowed between the twin Cherubim!"

"When Solomon brought the Ark into the Temple, all the golden trees that were in the Temple were filled with moisture and produced abundant fruit, to the great profit and enjoyment of the priestly gild; until King Manasseh put an image of an idol in the Temple, which resulted in the departure of the Divine Presence and the drying up of the fruit" (Tan., Terumah, xi.; also with slight variations, Yoma 39b).

A Vanguard in the Desert.

The Ark was not merely a receptacle for the Law; it was a protection against the enemies of the Israelites, and cleared the roads in the wilderness for them. Two sparks, tradition relates, came out from between the two cherubim, which killed all serpents and scorpions, and burned the thorns, the smoke of which as it curled upward sent a sweet fragrance throughout the world, and the nations of the earth exclaimed in wonder and admiration (Cant. iii. 6), "What is this that cometh up from the wilderness like pillars of smoke?" (Tan., Wayaḳhel, vii.)

Its Ultimate Fate.

Opinions are divided as to what finally became of the Ark when the Temple was destroyed. Some, basing their views on II Chron. xxxvi. 10, and Isa. xxxix. 6, declare (Yoma 53b) that it was taken toBabylonia, while according to others (ib.) it was not taken into captivity, but was hidden away in the Temple, in the apartment where the wood for fuel was kept; and it is related that a certain priest, while doing his work in that apartment, noticed that some of the stones in the paved floor projected above the others. He no sooner began to tell the story to a fellow-priest than he expired. That was regarded as a sure sign that the Ark had been buried in that place (Yer. Sheḳ. vi. 49c). Another tradition records that it was King Josiah who hid the Ark and other sacred vessels, for fear that if they were taken to Babylonia they would never be brought back (ib.).

"Why was a distance of 2,000 cubits always maintained between the Ark and the people? In order that when the march was stopped upon each Sabbath day, all the people might travel as far as the Ark to offer their prayers" (Num. R. ii. 9). "One son of Obed-edom betokens by his name, 'Peulthai, for God blessed him' (I Chron. xxvi. 5), the blessing brought upon his father's house; he honored the Ark by placing a new candle before it every morning and evening" (Num. R. iv. 20.).

Ark is used figuratively for a teacher of the Law in a farewell address; "If Obed-edom was blessed greatly for keeping the Ark in his house, how much more should he be blessed who shows hospitality to students of the Law?" (Ber. 63b.)

Tabut, Sakinah, and Remnant. —In Mohammedan Literature:

In the Koran the Ark of the Covenant and Moses' ark of bulrushes are both indicated by the one word "tabut," which term certainly comes from the Hebrew "tebah," through the Jewish-Aramaic "tebuta." The reference in the Koran to the Ark of the Covenant occurs in the middle of the story of the choice of Saul to be king. There the people demand a sign that God has chosen him, and the narrative continues (ii. 249): "and their prophet said unto them, 'Lo, the sign of his kingship will be that the ark [tabut] will come unto you with a "Sakinah" in it from your Lord, and with a remnant of that which the family of Moses and the family of Aaron left—angels bearing it. Lo, in that is verily a sign for you if ye are believers!'" Baidawi (ad loc.) explains "tabut" as derived from the root tub (return), and as thus meaning a chest to which a thing taken from it was sure to return. It was the chest in which the Law (Taurat) was kept, and was about three cubits by two, and made of gilded box-wood. "Sakinah," he says, means "rest," "tranquillity"; and it came to the Israelites in the coming of the Ark to them, or it was the Taurat itself, brought in the Ark and calming them by its presence (see Shekinah). Moses was wont to make it go on before in battle, and it would steady the Israelites and prevent them fleeing.

Composition of "Remnant."

Others said that there was in the Ark a figure of chrysolite or ruby with the head and tail of a shecat and with two wings. It would utter a moaning sound, and the Ark would rush toward the enemy with the Israelites following it. When it stayed, they stood and were at ease, and victory came. By the "remnant" in it is meant the fragments of the broken tables, the staff and clothes of Moses, and the turban of Aaron. After Moses died, God took it up to Himself, and the angels now brought it down again. But others said that it remained with the prophets that succeeded Moses, and that they gained victories by means of it until they acted corruptly and the unbelievers took it from them. So it remained in the country of Goliath until God made Saul king. He then brought calamity upon the Philistines and destroyed five cities. Perceiving that this was through the Ark, they placed it on two bulls, and the angels led it to Saul.

History of the Ark.

Al-Tha'labi, in his "Ḳisas al-Anbiyya" (p. 150 of ed. of Cairo, A. H. 1314), gives details as to the earlier and later history of the Ark. He brings it into connection with the important Moslem doctrine of the Light of Mohammed, the first of all created things, for the sake of which God created the worlds. The Ark was sent down by God from paradise with Adam when he fell. In it, cut out of a ruby, were figures of all the prophets that were to come, especially of Mohammed and his first four califs and immediate followers. At the death of Adam it passed to Seth, and so down to Abraham. From Abraham, Ishmael received it as the eldest of his sons. It passed then to Ishmael's son, Kedar, but was claimed from him by Jacob. Kedar refused to relinquish it, but was divinely commanded to give it up, as it must remain in the line of the prophets of God, which was now that of Israel. On the other hand, the Light of Mohammed, which shone on the forehead of every lineal ancestor of his, remained in the Arab line of Kedar. So the Ark passed down to Moses. How and when it was lost, the Moslem historians do not state. According to Ibn 'Abbas, a cousin of Mohammed and the founder of Koranic exegesis, it, with the rod of Moses, is now lying in the Lake of Tiberias, and will be brought forth at the last day.

Earlier Form of Legend.

The story of the image with the cat's head and tail is traced back to Wahb ibn Munabbih, who was of Jewish birth. It has probably some Midrashic origin. What is apparently an earlier form of this latter legend is given in the "Hhamis" of Al-Diyarbakri (i. 24 et seq.; compare ed. of Cairo, 1302). In it the chest with images of the prophets is not connected with the Ark of the Covenant. The chest, called also tabut, which had been given to Adam as above stated, was in the possession of the emperor Heraclius, and was shown by him to ambassadors from Abu Bakr, the first calif. It had been brought from the extreme West (Maghreb) by Alexander, and so had passed to the Roman emperors. ...

In the historical books the Ark plays no part after the time of Solomon, when it was placed in the Temple. Couard believes that it was carried from Jerusalem in the days of Rehoboam by the Egyptian king Shishak (Stade's "Zeitschrift," xii. 84). That would adequately explain its disappearance from history.

And so, various ones have various ideas about it.

Some say Ireland

Some have claimed Ireland is the location of the Ark of the Covenant:

Cairn T, at Loughcrew, nr. Oldcastle, Royal Meath in Ireland is the Tomb of Jeremiah the Bible Prophet who was commissioned by God to tear down; uproot (from Jerusalem) and plant (in Ireland) the daughter (the Tender Twig - Teia Tephi), from the line of David (symbolised in Scripture as the High Cedar), of king Zedekiah, in c. 588 B.C.; the Throne of Israel - the Lia Fail / Bethel Stone and The Ark of The Covenant. Jeremiah 1:10 See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build, and to plant.

The proof of the fact, that this cairn is the tomb of Jeremiah, is "written in stone" in hieroglyphics, on the stones within the cairn itself. http://jahtruth.net/jere.htm retrieved 04/03/19

There are various traditions and legends concerning Jeremiah and the British Isles. Essentially they are based upon tying a few biblical passages in with some early claims. Notice one discussed by E.B.Benjamin in 19th century (scriptures within {} below inserted by me):

In Jeremiah i. 10 we read a commission given to him in these words: "I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build, and to plant." In tracing the prophet's history, his pulling down and destroying is clearly told, for his whole cry was the destruction of the nation of Judah and the conquest by the King of Babylon…

Then "Jeremiah went with Gedaliah and dwelt with him" {Jeremiah 40:6}; he was the "governor whom the King of Babylon had set over the people of the land." {vs. 7}

This "governor" was conquered by Ishmael, "of the seed royal," {41:1} who had joined the Ammonites, and Ishmael carried off his captives, "even the king's daughters," {41:10} to go to the Ammonites.

Ishmael, in his turn, was conquered by Johanan {41:16}, who took his captives, with Jeremiah and the king's daughters, to "Chimham, which is by Bethlehem, to go to enter into Egypt." {41:17} There they pretended to desire to know what the Lord wished them to do {42:1-3}. Through Jeremiah they were commanded not to go to Egypt {41:19}. Like many of later date, the thing they were told not to do was that they had determined upon {43:1-5}. So—we may judge sorely against his will—Jeremiah and the king's daughters were taken into Egypt {43:5-6}. As this was against the direct command of God, and as his mission "to build and to plant" {1:10} was yet unfulfilled, we may infer that the prophet escaped from Egypt at the earliest opportunity.

Doubtless ships of Dan {cf. Judges 5:17} were still engaged in the same trade as that of the Phoenicians, the trade in tin with Cornwall, and in one of Dan's ships, tradition tells us, Jeremiah and the king's daughters, and the stone, the Lia Fail, embarked. Holy Writ is silent on this subject, leaving us only sure that Jeremiah would fulfil his mission.

It is said the vessel was wrecked on the coast of Spain; tradition in that country confirms this. Finally, 580 B. C, the goal was reached, and the Tuatha de Danans welcomed to Tara's halls the great prophet and the Eastern princess, who brought with them the heirloom of Israel, Jacob's Pillow.

Jewish tradition tells that this stone had been preserved in the temple as a pillar of witness of the covenant between Jacob and his God. Irish tradition tells of the beauty of the princess (but one is spoken of, perhaps the others married in Spain) Tephi, the beautiful, and of her grave; of the college established by the prophet; of the city and nation that he built and planted; and the grandeur of Tara's halls is now both " said and sung." (Benjamin EB. Lia Fall. The Churchman, November 16, 1878. Original from the University of Michigan. Digitized, Oct 31, 2009, p. 595).

As far as the king's daughters, it should be mentioned that one king (Jehoiakim) and one prince (Coniah) of Judah were told that their descendants would not occupy the throne of David (Jeremiah 36:30; 22:24-30). And hence, this is may be part of why King Zedekiah's daughters are mentioned in scripture (Jeremiah 41:10; 43:6)--the throne was apparently to go through them.

According to an interpretation of an inscription in stone in the alleged 'Tomb of Jeremiah' only four people arrived--Jeremiah, his scribe Baruch, and two of the king's daughters--the fifth allegedly died in Gibraltar. Unless Baruch was also a Levite, it would not seem that he could have help move the Ark--hence since Jeremiah would not have been able to move it himself, this could eliminate the Irish possibility.

The Ark of the Covenant connection with Jeremiah seems to be related to the following from the non-canonical Book of 2 Maccabees which states:

2 One finds in the records that the prophet Jeremiah ordered those who were being deported to take some of the fire, as has been mentioned, 2 and that the prophet, after giving them the law, instructed those who were being deported not to forget the commandments of the Lord, or to be led astray in their thoughts on seeing the gold and silver statues and their adornment. 3 And with other similar words he exhorted them that the law should not depart from their hearts.

4 It was also in the same document that the prophet, having received an oracle, ordered that the tent and the ark should follow with him, and that he went out to the mountain where Moses had gone up and had seen the inheritance of God. 5 Jeremiah came and found a cave-dwelling, and he brought there the tent and the ark and the altar of incense; then he sealed up the entrance. 6 Some of those who followed him came up intending to mark the way, but could not find it. 7 When Jeremiah learned of it, he rebuked them and declared: “The place shall remain unknown until God gathers his people together again and shows his mercy. 8 Then the Lord will disclose these things, and the glory of the Lord and the cloud will appear, as they were shown in the case of Moses, and as Solomon asked that the place should be specially consecrated.” (2 Maccabees 2:2-8)

Notice also:

In the Pseudepigraphal book called “The Paralipomena of Jeremiah” (meaning “the remaining words of Jeremiah”) it is also written that Jeremiah, in obedience to God’s command, hid the sacred objects from the temple just before the destruction of Jerusalem. Now, neither of these books are to be trusted as completely accurate – however, they do show a strong tradition that has Jeremiah hiding, or having someone else hide, the Ark and other objects from the temple.

Is there any truth in these 2 books? Perhaps – since Jeremiah WAS the prophet in Jerusalem during the time of Josiah (when the Ark was brought back into the temple) and he continued through to the time of the destruction of Jerusalem, it is logical to believe it possible that God directed him to have the Ark and other sacred items hidden. https://wyattmuseum.com/the-ark-of-the-covenant-special-article/2011-338 retrieved 04/04/19

Jeremiah was the son of a priest (Jeremiah 1:1), hence a Levite. Levites were biblical entrusted to move the Ark of the Covenant (Deuteronomy 31:25).

So, it may be that Ireland (if enough Levites were with Jeremiah) or in the tunnels in Jerusalem could be a theoretical possibility.

However, since multiple Levites were involved in moving it, it is not clear that Jeremiah would have been able to take the Ark to Ireland.

While it is hard to argue from a negative, notice the following:

5 But Johanan the son of Kareah and all the captains of the forces took all the remnant of Judah who had returned to dwell in the land of Judah, from all nations where they had been driven — 6 men, women, children, the king's daughters, and every person whom Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard had left with Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, and Jeremiah the prophet and Baruch the son of Neriah. 7 So they went to the land of Egypt, for they did not obey the voice of the Lord. And they went as far as Tahpanhes. (Jeremiah 43:5-7)

The above clearly says that Jeremiah was with the king's daughters and presumably other things associated with royalty. But nothing about the Ark of the Covenant in mentioned.

Here is more related to Ireland from Lawrence O'Brien:

Could Ireland’s Cairn T Really Be the Tomb of the Prophet Jeremiah?

11 May 2017

Cairn T is at a junction of the Road of the Chariots in County Meath, in the Boyne Valley, Ireland. Unfortunately, it’s not on Google Maps yet, but nearby Loughcrew House is. Cairn T is nearer to the house and further inland than Tara, the seat of the High Kings of Ireland.

This cairn passage tomb is a little visited archaeological site about a one hour drive from Dublin. ...

The Prophet Jeremiah, you will remember, was the Jewish prophet who some say escaped the ruins of Jerusalem with the Ark of the Covenant in 587 BC. He was the guy who had warned the Jewish king about the destruction that was to come and was imprisoned for his efforts.

He was only released when the Babylonians under Nebuchadnezzar took the city and destroyed the First Temple. After leaving Jerusalem, one new account proposes that he sailed to Ireland, after stopping at the Jewish enclave at Alexandria in Egypt, the most likely destination for anyone fleeing the Babylonians. ...

I experienced a powerful feeling of peace and inner contentment when I visited Cairn T. Whether the Ark of the Covenant is buried there or at Tara is hard to know. Neither site has been excavated. When a group of Zionists tried to dig up Tara in 1902 in a search for the Ark, they were stopped by mass protests. ...

Many people believe Cairn T is the site of the Prophet Jeremiah’s tomb. ... The pictogram of the boat on the stone at the entrance is said to show Jeremiah’s arrival in Ireland.

This site has never been excavated. It also has an almost permanent guard; if you’re thinking of coming and looking for the Ark of the Covenant. https://www.ancient-origins.net/ancient-places-europe/could-ireland-s-cairn-t-really-be-tomb-prophet-jeremiah-008052 retrieved 04/03/19

The December 2013 edition of The Philadelphia Trumpet had the following from PCG’s Gerald Flurry:

The ark of the covenant has inspired a lot of curiosity over the years. The ark was a holy chest that God instructed the Israelites to build. It represented the throne of God. In the past, it has been the subject of documentaries and movies like Raiders of the Lost Ark. Few people are talking about that artifact today. Yet a fascinating verse in the Bible says that in this modern era, many people will be talking about it. The implication is that very soon, the ark of the covenant is going to be found!

That verse is found in Jeremiah, a book of prophecy that was written for this end time (Jeremiah 30:1-9). So this prophecy about the ark is for us today.

If the ark were found, it would electrify many people around the world!

People don’t know where the ark is, but I believe that the Bible—and a certain nation’s history—tell us in which country it is located today.

An End-Time Setting

This prophecy about the ark of the covenant is found in Jeremiah 3. To understand it, we need to look at the context.

Verses 12-14 of this chapter give some important details: “Go and proclaim these words toward the north, and say, Return, thou backsliding Israel, saith the Lord; and I will not cause mine anger to fall upon you: for I am merciful, saith the Lord, and I will not keep anger for ever. Only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against the Lord thy God, and hast scattered thy ways to the strangers under every green tree, and ye have not obeyed my voice, saith the Lord. Turn, O backsliding children, saith the Lord; for I am married unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion.”…

Jeremiah 3:16-17 move forward in time: “And it shall come to pass, when ye be multiplied and increased in the land, in those days, saith the Lord, they shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of the Lord: neither shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall that be done any more. At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the Lord; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the Lord, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart.” These verses refer to the time of the World Tomorrow, after Jesus Christ has returned and is ruling the world…

Just before the Tribulation, many people will be visiting the ark like a tourist attraction, according to this prophecy…Jeremiah brought the ark of the covenant on his journey to Ireland!…

If the ark were discovered, wouldn’t that be a powerful witness to the world? I believe it would be. Proof that the biblical chronicle is accurate could help lead some to repentance. The ark’s discovery would even point people to where God’s message was being proclaimed, and help them to realize that even though they heard it and didn’t act on it, that message was right and was from God.

Here is something he posted on March 26, 2019:

The Ark of the Covenant has inspired a lot of curiosity over the years. The Ark was a holy chest that God instructed the Israelites to build. It represented the throne of God. In the past, it has been the subject of documentaries and movies like Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Few people are talking about that artifact today. Yet a fascinating verse in the Bible says that in this modern era, many people will be talking about it. The implication is that very soon, the Ark of the Covenant is going to be found!

That verse is found in Jeremiah, a book of prophecy that was written for this end time (Jeremiah 30:1-9). So this prophecy about the Ark is for us today. ...

An End-Time Setting

This prophecy about the Ark of the Covenant is found in Jeremiah 3:16. To understand it, we need to look at the context. The verses leading up to this scripture describe this end-time period of great rebellion, culminating in the Great Tribulation. Jeremiah 3:16-17 move forward in time:

And it shall come to pass, when ye be multiplied and increased in the land, in those days, saith the Lord, they shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of the Lord: neither shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall that be done any more. At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the Lord; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the Lord, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart.

These verses refer to the world to come, after the Messiah has arrived and is ruling the Earth. Notice: Once that occurs, people will no longer focus on that physical Ark. This implies that they were focusing on it before that time.

In ancient Israel, the Ark symbolized God’s presence. Located in the holy of holies inside the tabernacle, it was a symbol of God’s throne and rule. He even spoke from that Ark (e.g. Exodus 25:22). So it makes sense that once God’s reign is actually established on Earth, that physical Ark will no longer “come to mind.” The world will no longer need a symbol for God because He Himself will be here. ...

Strong’s Concordance defines visit: “to visit, to inspect, to review.” A secondary definition is “an overseer, to be set over.” That certainly indicates to me that the Ark is going to be found. ...

Where Is the Ark?

Irish annals show that when Jeremiah migrated to Ireland, he brought with him more than just the princess of Judah who carried on David’s throne....

Jeremiah brought the Ark of the Covenant on his journey to Ireland!

This knowledge, too, was not uncommon until relatively recently. F. R. A. Glover, who ascertained that the British monarchy was aware of its linkage to King David, wrote extensively about these objects having made their way to Ireland with Jeremiah. His book England, the Remnant of Judah and the Israel of Ephraim records this history.

Glover stated that the grave of Queen Tea-Tephi lies in the Hill of Tara, the origin of Irish history. In his research, he found that she had been buried with the two stone tablets of the Ten Commandments, along with the Ark of the Covenant.

In Volume i of The Journal of the British Archeological Association, published in 1895, an essay called “The Hill of Tara” by R. H. McDonald referred to the work of the Irish archaeologist Dr. Denis Hanan: “‘Tara,’ says Dr. Hanan, is almost pure Hebrew for Torah, which means ‘law,’ and the original tables of the law were in the Ark which, curiously enough, Irish history says is buried with Tea.”

Note that! Tara comes from torah—God’s law! There is a well-known connection between the famous Tara Hill and the law of God!

This is amazing history. The tablets of the Ten Commandments were written by the very finger of God! (Exodus 31:18; 34:1, 28). God personally gave them to Moses, and they were placed within the Ark of the Covenant (Deuteronomy 10:5; 1 Kings 8:9).

According to these archaeologists and historians, these tablets were buried with Tea-Tephi in Tara Hill! Why don’t we hear more about this history? It is clearly recorded in Ireland’s history books. This simply cannot be chalked up as a “legend” or “myth” of Irish history! https://watchjerusalem.co.il/528-finding-the-ark-of-the-covenant

Now, the scriptures that Gerald Flurry referred to as ‘proof’ in that article do not, in my view, conclusively prove that--but they are supportive. It is possible that the Ark of the Covenant may be found.

There Was a Confirmed Dream

It possibly could be related to a dream by a lady named Fesilafai Fiso Leaana of New Zealand, She had a dream after going to bed on December 8, 2012 that included a comment about the Ark, see Temple Institute claims about the ‘Foundation Stone’ not truly scriptural and differ from Continuing Church of God beliefs and Dreams, the Bible, and the Continuing Church of God.

Unbeknownst to me until late September 2013, a lady named Fesilafai Fiso Leaana of New Zealand had a dream after going to bed on December 8, 2012.  Here is a report that Fesilafai Fiso Leaana wrote about her dream:

A few months before my dream, my husband and I noticed a contradiction in practice, regarding the sabbath commandment in LCG, from there we started to pray continuously for God to lead us to where the truth is.  It seems God has answered our prayers through the dream.

The dream began with myself and approximately 70 New Zealand Living Church of God brethren, then suddenly LCG vanished (I was wondering where is LCG?) and I was left standing with approximately 10 people excluding myself, on a very high building. We were standing on the very top of the building, where I couldn’t see the bottom, there were no other buildings, just this building. I could not see the bottom of the building but just clouds below the building and clouds surrounding the building which led to a beautiful white mountain – a mountain that had no ends on either side. The building was pretty close to the mountain, I could see the top of the mountain. The mountain was all white and so beautiful. I remember that I began to be filled with joy and peace. But also wondering how we got up on this building and confused why there were no other buildings but the clouds seemed like it was hiding the building and I felt protected or it felt like a safe place. I looked around there were still only about ten people there, the only person I could clearly recognize was Shirley constantly working, the approximate ten others were just sitting and standing around. So I walked around the building looking for the large crowd from LCG, but all I kept returning to was that Shirley was working and doing different types of work alone while the others were still sitting and standing around the building with me. I wondered why she was working a lot.  I could not find LCG.

Then suddenly a message came to my mind: “There is a secret in the mountain”. And I was so happy to know that, I was still feeling elated and could still see the beautiful white mountain and wondered about the secret. Then I asked: “What is the secret?” Then the message said, nobody knows the secret in the mountain but only you have received this message that there is a secret in the mountain. Then I asked ‘what is the secret in the mountain?’ I received a message to my mind that told me that “the secret in the mountain is the Ark of the Covenant”. Then the dream abruptly ended because I woke up. And immediately, I woke up my husband and recounted the dream to him, and I told my husband that it reminded me of when God gave Moses the Ten Commandments on the mountain and that the mountain was also covered with clouds.

On the same day after my dream, at church service Mr Penman warned us to be careful what we read from Bob Thiel’s Obama book, because they do not support everything he wrote in it. At the time I kept your name in my mind as I did not know who you were then.

Then 3 weeks later Shirley contacted me regarding your Chronology – the exit from LCG. Shirley had all of the Chronology and gave us all a print out of it and went over it with my husband and I. Shirley kept stressing the integrity of the LCG leadership and administration was compromised as proven by your Chronology account. Then my husband and I had to make a decision whether we would continue with LCG or go with Bob Thiel (you) since Shirley, John and Kayla had already decided to be with you.

We decided to go with Bob Thiel and then left the meeting but a letter from Mr. Penman and a visit from the new New Zealand minister Paul attempted to obstruct our departure and tried to dissuade us from leaving LCG and coming with you. This forced us to carefully rethink our decision.

My husband and I were alone, that’s when my husband said to me, “remember your dream? This is what your dream means, that we need to leave this church and go with Shirley”. That’s when we knew what to do. And this dream is the reason most of us in the kiwi CCOG knew that we are in the right Church, God told us to come to this Church. We reaffirmed with Shirley and others that we were going to go with Bob Thiel and my husband told them the dream for the first time and that the dream is the reason my husband and I decided to come.

Not having all the details of the dream, Shirley then prayed about the dream. She asked God for more understanding on the dream. Then the next day she was reading the book of Psalm and Psalm 25:14 JUMPED out at her: “The secret of the Lord is with those who fear Him, And He will show them His covenant.” (email 9/29/13)

Within several weeks of the dream, ten people in New Zealand, including Shirley Gestro (the Shirley above) began to attend the newly formed Continuing Church of God. So that part of the dream was clearly confirmed.

Biblically, mountains can symbolize government (Psalm 30:7; Isaiah 11:9; Daniel 2:35; Zechariah 4:7; see also The Bible, Peter, Paul, John, Polycarp, Herbert W. Armstrong, Roderick C. Meredith, and Bob Thiel on Church Government) and white purity or cleanness (Isaiah 1:18; Revelation 7:14, 19:14). Clouds around a mountain (or at least the top of it) could show a separation—maybe a separation that keeps many from seeing all of the truth (cf. Job 22:14; Lamentations 3:44) or recognizing top leadership?

The dream seemed to be a signal to confirm that the Philadelphia mantle was not with the Living Church of God, but instead was associated with someone that that had something to do with the ark of the covenant. Prior to the dream Fesilafai Fiso Leaana indicated that she had problems with how the leadership in LCG viewed the Sabbath, and that was one of the issues that I dealt within weeks of the formation of the Continuing Church of God.

Now, I (Bob Thiel) never heard of, nor learned of, this dream until after the start of the Feast of Tabernacles in September 2013 in New Zealand (which is where my wife Joyce and I began the Feast of Tabernacles in 2013).

Why is that potentially significant?

Back in 2006, when I was first asked to give a sermon at the Feast of Tabernacles, it occurred to me that never in WCG, GCG, nor LCG did I recall anyone actually fulfilling the requirement in Deuteronomy 31:10-13 about reading the “words of the law” in Deuteronomy every seven years at the Feast of Tabernacles. So, when the opportunity to give a sermon came up (in Guatemala in 2006), I attempted to go through that book of the law. In 2012, it occurred to me that since this was to be done every seven years, that somehow I would need to do this in 2013 (seven years later), but I was not sure how this would be done. However, once the Continuing Church of God formed, I realized that how this would be done at the Feast of Tabernacles in 2013.

My plan was to be faithful to the covenant and teach it, consistent with Shirley Gestro's interpretation--the interpretion of which she had before meeting me or telling me anything about this.

An interesting coincidence?

If the dream related to the Ark was spiritual, then it has been being fulfilled by the CCOG.

As it turns out, It was after I began to cite Deuteronomy 31:10-13 and started reading the book of the law at the Feast of Tabernacles in New Zealand in 2013, that Fesilafai Fiso Leaana came up to me and told me about her dream. We discussed some points about it and the ark of the covenant, etc. As it turns out, one of the items that was kept besides the ark of the covenant was the very same “Book of the Law” (Deuteronomy 31:26)  that I was reading in its entirety publicly during that Feast of Tabernacles. This is a connection that, humanly speaking Fesilafai Leaana could not have known. There are also other potential ramifications related to the ark of the covenant.

Subsequent events, events that Fesilafai Leaana could not have known on December 8/9, 2012, confirmed her dream. She had no idea that the Continuing Church of God was going to form, and I had not made the decision to actually form it until after getting a letter on December 28, 2012. Fesilafai Leaana’s dream is another witness as to the proper start, etc. of the Continuing Church of God.

On October 24, 2013, I was able to visit the visible remains of the Church of God on Jerusalem's Western Hill as well as go inside what the crusaders and Muslims eventually built upon it. I was not actually planning on going there until about a week before I went (someone was supposed to get me some information the month before there, but was unable to do it--so as a last minute move, I decided to go). I did not go because of Fesilafai Leaana's dream.

Anyway, while attempting to take some photos and to video some of the remains of the Church of God on Jerusalem’s Western Hill, I was approached by a Jewish rabbi named Avraham Goldstein of the Diaspora Yeshiva. He asked why I was there, so I explained my interest in what is believed to have been the first Christian church building in Jerusalem (see Church of God on Jerusalem's Western Hill)--a picture of which was on the front cover of our songbook, The Bible Hymnal, then and now.

Avraham Goldstein then asked me if the Continuing Church of God would like to be involved in an archaeological project related to that general area. He mentioned doing excavations related to what some believe is David's tomb, located below. Many consider that only a legend and not the real location--though the actual location of David's tomb has not been verified in many centuries. However a Jewish rabbi who claimed to visit it in 1163 A.D. stated it was below this particular Mt. Zion.

Avraham Goldstein also told me that he believes that the ark of the covenant may be directly below or near it via tunnels. He, not I, brought up the Ark of the Covenant.

I do not know if this ties to Fesilafai Leaana's dream or if CCOG would be involved in finding the Ark in Israel or the British Isles or ? But if so, that would be a powerful witness.

Anyway, I have reported years ago to the brethren of the Continuing Church of God that we were considering having some possible involvement with Avraham Goldstein's proposal, because of various aspects of this project (see Letter: October 25, 2013). I have spoken to Avraham Goldstein a few times on the telephone since my visit there in 2013.

It is my intent to try to look more into this project, presuming I am able to go back to Jerusalem in the next few years.

If the ark of the covenant is now below the Church of God on Jerusalem’s Western Hill, known as Mt. Zion, that would have ramifications for the world as well as the Continuing Church of God (see Church of God on Jerusalem’s Western Hill).

Before going further, let me state that Christians are the 'temple of God' according to scriptures like 1 Corinthians 3:16-17 (see also Why is a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem Not Required?), and in that sense, the ark is within us as we are led by the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:14).

Where Will the Ark of the Covenant End Up?

Now, as far as where something called the Ark is to end up, furthermore, notice:

8 Arise, O Lord, to Your resting place, You and the ark of Your strength. 9 Let Your priests be clothed with righteousness,And let Your saints shout for joy. 10 For Your servant David’s sake, Do not turn away the face of Your Anointed. 11 The Lord has sworn in truth to David; He will not turn from it: “I will set upon your throne the fruit of your body. 12 If your sons will keep My covenant And My testimony which I shall teach them, Their sons also shall sit upon your throne forevermore.” 13 For the Lord has chosen Zion; He has desired it for His dwelling place: 14 “This is My resting place forever; Here I will dwell, for I have desired it. 15 I will abundantly bless her provision; I will satisfy her poor with bread. 16 I will also clothe her priests with salvation, And her saints shall shout aloud for joy. 17 There I will make the horn of David grow;I will prepare a lamp for My Anointed. 18 His enemies I will clothe with shame, But upon Himself His crown shall flourish.” (Psalm 132:8-18)

While Solomon wanted it to be in the temple he built to house the ark forever, God had David write Zion was the chosen location.

It remains my view that there is a chance that we will see the Ark or a strong claim that someone has located the Ark (or perhaps part of it) within the next decade or so.

What are the options?

  1. No ark will be found or claimed to be found, other than what will be in heaven.
  2. An Islamic leader will claim to have found it and gain a greater following.
  3. The Ark of the Covenant or a piece of it may be found, with or without CCOG assistance.
  4. Catholics will not accept the two witnesses and may claim the lack of an Ark discovery (even if there is one or even a later false one) as part of the reason.

Whether or not it is presently in Ireland or inside Mount Zion, it will be in heaven for a time and end up in Mount Zion.

Developments related to the Ark of the Covenant may well have prophetic ramifications.

Here is a link to a related sermon: Exodus 25: Ark of the Covenant and the Mercy Seat.

Thiel B. Ark of the Covenant: Prophetic Ramifications. COGwriter (c) http://www.cogwriter.com/ark-of-the-covenant-prophecy.htm 2019 0408

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