Depiction of Levites Carrying the Ark of the Covenant
In a surprise move, the patriarch of the Orthodox Church of Ethiopia announced that he will unveil what he claims is the actual Ark of the Covenant:
‘Ark of the Covenant’ about to be unveiled?
Ethiopian patriarch tells pope he will show artifact to world
Posted: June 24, 2009 9:35 pm Eastern © 2009 WorldNetDaily
The patriarch of the Orthodox Church of Ethiopia says he will announce to the world Friday the unveiling of the Ark of the Covenant, perhaps the world’s most prized archaeological and spiritual artifact, which he says has been hidden away in a church in his country for millennia, according to the Italian news agency Adnkronos.
Abuna Pauolos, in Italy for a meeting with Pope Benedict XVI this week, told the news agency, “Soon the world will be able to admire the Ark of the Covenant described in the Bible as the container of the tablets of the law that God delivered to Moses and the center of searches and studies for centuries.”
The announcement is expected to be made at 2 p.m. Italian time from the Hotel Aldrovandi in Rome. Pauolos will reportedly be accompanied by Prince Aklile Berhan Makonnen Haile Sellassie and Duke Amedeo D’Acosta.
“The Ark of the Covenant is in Ethiopia for many centuries,” said Pauolos. “As a patriarch I have seen it with my own eyes and only few highly qualified persons could do the same, until now.”
According to Pauolos, the actual Ark has been kept in one church, but to defend the treasure, a copy was placed in every single church in Ethiopia.
He said a museum is being built in Axum, Ethiopia, where the Ark will be displayed. A foundation of D’Acosta will fund the project.
The Ark of the Covenant is the sacred container of the Ten Commandments as well as Aaron’s rod and a sample of manna, the mysterious food that kept the Israelites alive while wandering in the wilderness during their journey to the promised land…
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
I have read various older reports that the Ethiopians have long claimed to have the original Ark of the Covenant and had wondered if they would ever make this a public matter. If WND is correct, this may happen tomorrow.
Here is something I read from an account 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 likely, 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:
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).
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.
It is interesting, however, that many of the Muslims believe that there 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).
I perhaps should add that certain Catholic prophecies indicate 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)
Now the Bible is clear that the Ark of the 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. But 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 as proof that their prophecies are to be fulfilled.
I presume that if the Ethiopians want most people to take this possible announcement seriously that they will allow archaeologists and others to more thoroughly examine it. However, if it is the actual Ark of the Covenant, this would seem to be quite dangerous from a biblical point of view:
1 Again David gathered all the choice men of Israel, thirty thousand. 2 And David arose and went with all the people who were with him from Baale Judah to bring up from there the ark of God, whose name is called by the Name, the LORD of Hosts, who dwells between the cherubim. 3 So they set the ark of God on a new cart, and brought it out of the house of Abinadab, which was on the hill; and Uzzah and Ahio, the sons of Abinadab, drove the new cart. 4 And they brought it out of the house of Abinadab, which was on the hill, accompanying the ark of God; and Ahio went before the ark. 5 Then David and all the house of Israel played music before the LORD on all kinds of instruments of fir wood, on harps, on stringed instruments, on tambourines, on sistrums, and on cymbals.
6 And when they came to Nachon’s threshing floor, Uzzah put out his hand to the ark of God and took hold of it, for the oxen stumbled. 7 Then the anger of the LORD was aroused against Uzzah, and God struck him there for his error; and he died there by the ark of God. (2 Samuel 6:1-7)
Only Levites were supposed to move the Ark, and that is what David finally realized. Non-Levites, like Uzzah were never supposed to touch it.
While it may be remotely possible that the Ark could be in Ethiopia (as I think the Bible more strongly indicates that it is in heaven and not on the earth), I remain highly skeptical that what is expected to be shown tomorrow will actually be it.
Some articles of possibly related interest may include:
Why is a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem Not Required? Although people like Timothy LaHaye teach a third Jewish temple is required, who is ‘the temple of God” in the New Testament? What does the Bible teach about the temple in the end-times?
Solomon’s TempleThis is a a 5 minute animated film that shows one artist’s understanding of the details about Solomon’s temple.
Africa: Its Biblical Past and Prophesied Future What does the Bible teach about Africa and its future? Did the early Church reach Africa? Were there Sabbath-keepers in Ethiopia? Will God call all the Africans?
Catholic Prophecies: Do They Mirror, Highlight, or Contradict Biblical Prophecies? People of all faiths may be surprised to see what various Roman and Orthodox Catholic prophets have been predicting as many of their predictions will be looked to in the 21st century.
Who Are The Two Witnesses? What is their job? What does the Bible reveal? What has the Church of God taught on this subject? Might even Roman Catholic prophecies give some clues here?