In the late Roman period there were upward of a million Samaritans throughout the Roman Empire. These days there is only a small community, of a few hundred in Israel that self-identify as Samaritans, but other than that there are very few Samaritans left.
WHAT HAPPENED TO THE SAMARITANS?
Rev 2:9 I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan.
I began writing about the Babylonian World System, part 1 last December, 2015, and finished part 2 in January 2016. I believe the Holy Spirit led me to write more about the Holy Spirit vs. demonic spirits afterwards in order to paint a fuller picture of the current Babylonian World System. You may want to go back and review those two previous articles and refresh your memory before you continue reading this article.
Basically, I contend that a group of “Babylonian” families are attempting to pass themselves off as Christians and Jews, but in fact, many of them are demon possessed Satan worshippers.
I left off at part 2 asking, “What happened to the Samaritans?” I hope to show what exactly happened to the Samaritans (Babylonians) in Part 3.
There is an interesting book about the Samaritans called: The Samaritans, The Earliest Jewish Sect, by James Alan Montgomery, published in 1907.
Mr. Montgomery did quite a lot of research about the Samaritans and actually most of his book is positive. I am not negative towards the Samaritans as a group, a great many of them were converted to Christianity in the Book of Acts. I believe many of the Christian “Arabs” currently living in Israel are probably direct descendants of the Samaritans. However, Mr. Montgomery gives us some important clues about the Samaritans he found living in the Holy Land.
The principal employment of the Samaritans is petty
trading, a few of them being engaged in manufacture, es-
pecially of woolens ; none of them are agriculturists. Their
past history shows that their forte has lain, like that of
their Jewish relatives, in finance, and they appear to have
maintained an honorable reputation in the handling of
moneys, for down into the past century individuals of their
number have regularly acted as the fiscal agents of the local government. The Samaritans, The Earliest Jewish Sect, James Alan Montgomery, 1907.
Mr. Montgomery tells us the Samaritans that he met and interviewed were not agriculturalist, they were mainly involved in trading, manufacture, and FINANCE!
We know from the Bible that Abraham was a descendant of Shem along with all the other people in the Middle East. We also know from our own experience that the Semitic people have black hair, dark eyes, and dark complexions. The Samaritans that Mr. Montgomery met had quite a different appearance.
I had seen individuals, among Arabs and Jews, of as noble aspect as any one of them; but as a community, there is nothing in Palestine to com-
pare with them. A straight and high forehead, full brow,
large and rather almond-shaped eye, aquiline nose, some-
what large mouth, and well-formed chin, are their chief
physiological characteristics ; and, with few exceptions, they
are tall and of lofty bearing. They seem to be all of one
type, and bear an unmistakable family likeness. In this
they differ from the Jews, who have assimilated in physical
as well as in moral qualities to the nations among whom
they have long dwelt. The general type of physiognomy of the Samaritans
is distinctly Jewish, the nose markedly so. Von Luschan
derives the Jews from ' the Hittites, the Aryan Amorites,
and the Semitic nomads.' The Samaritans may be traced
to the same origin. The ' Amorites were men of great
stature ' and to them Von Luschan traces the blonds of
the modern Jews. With still greater certainty the tall stat-
ure and the presence of a BLOND type among the Samari-
tans may be referred to the same source.” The Samaritans, The Earliest Jewish Sect, James Alan Montgomery, 1907.
Mr. Montgomery noticed that although the Samaritans possessed distinctly Jewish features, most importantly the Semitic nose, they had a remarkable feature that set them apart from their neighbors…many of them were tall and BLOND. Blond hair and a fair complexion are very curious features for people located in the Middle East, who are living next to the Mediterranean Sea.
This brings us back to my original question. What happened to all the Samaritans? When the Romans conducted their wars against the Jews, apparently they did not distinguish any difference between the Jews and the Samaritans. Also, rival empires were continually clashing and waging war in the middle of the Samaritan’s homeland and they were continually being plundered by outside armies.
We can only picture in imagination the calamities which
racked the falling empire, and which in particular brought
havoc and desolation to Palestine ; rival emperors, insurgent
governors, the wars with Parthians and Sassanians, all
heaped their evils upon the devoted land, while within its
borders the general civic disorder gave scope, under the
cover of repressive laws, to the exactions of wilful and cove-
tous officials, who treated the Samaritan sect, so outlandish
to Pagan eyes, with even more despite than they did the
rest of their unfortunate subjects. The community was
more than decimated, its riches looted, its culture almost
exterminated, as indeed the Samaritans record. The Samaritans, The Earliest Jewish Sect, James Alan Montgomery, 1907.
It also appears that the Samaritan’s prosperity may have been a curse because no matter which outside power was controlling their lands, every ruling government did not hesitate to take advantage of the situation, and the Samaritan’s were continually being robbed of their wealth and resources. These negative circumstances and their trading activities probably helped encourage the Samaritans to spread throughout the ancient world similar to the Jewish diaspora. Although the Samaritan banking-houses undoubtedly had wealth and resources, they apparently did not use their wealth or influence with the various foreign governments to substantially benefit the Samaritan community located in the lands of Samaria.
It possessed no friends in the outside world apart from the mem-
bers of scattered synagogues and banking-houses, but these
never seem to have been able to give much support to the
home-church ; Judaism could survive even if not a Jew was
left in the Holy Land, for the vast and well-organized
Diaspora in Mesopotamia gave that church a powerful back-
ing in trouble and a sure place of refuge. But the Samari-
tans possessed no like material and political advantages.
Only the obstinacy of their religion saved them through
these and the succeeding centuries of chaos, and in view
of this persistence we dare not deny them credit for a true
religious faith. The Samaritans, The Earliest Jewish Sect, James Alan Montgomery, 1907.
If circumstances had been slightly different the Samaritans, like the Jews, may have eventually spread throughout the world and lived in their own separate communities. However, an uprising by the Samaritan community in the year 529 A.D., made Justinian, the Christian ruler of the Eastern Roman Empire, decide to completely eliminate the Samaritans from existence. They were required to either convert to Christianity or have all of their family’s wealth confiscated and be completely impoverished.
New legislation provoked by the desperation of the
Samaritans is amply revealed in fresh laws of Justinian.
The 17th Chapter of the Title De Hccreticis et Manichccis
et Samaritis, " Concerning the Samaritans," belongs to
the year of the Samaritan uprising, 529. In it the impe-
rial legislation took prompt steps toward the outlawry of the
obnoxious sect. This Chapter provides, for the first time,
that their synagogues are to be destroyed, while their
rebuilding is penalized; the Samaritans may have no heirs
but Orthodox persons ; nor may they donate property, which
in such a case is to be confiscated, the bishops as well as the
governors being charged with the execution of this pro-
vision. The Samaritans, The Earliest Jewish Sect, James Alan
Needless to say, vast numbers of Samaritans converted to Christianity rather than have all their wealth confiscated, which would have condemned their posterity to crushing poverty. Also, it goes without saying that when the Samaritans converted to Christianity, it was probably not genuine and they were probably forced to practice their true religion in secret.
The next edict repeats the former provisions
concerning synagogues, testaments, and civic honors, and
further inquires into the pretensions made by Samaritans
of conversion to Christianity, the genuineness of which is
to be ascertained by examining whether they educate their
wives and children in the Christian faith. The children of
mixed marriages must be brought up in Orthodoxy. This
edict includes with the Samaritans the Manichseans, Bor-
borites, Montanists, Taskogrudi, Ophites, and Pagans in
general, but the Jews are not mentioned. The Samaritans, The Earliest Jewish Sect, James Alan Montgomery, 1907.
Mr. Montgomery provides us with another clue. A subsequent law required any mixed marriages, where one person was a Christian, to raise their children up in the Orthodox Christian faith. However, Jews were not mentioned in the edict, possibly because there were Jews with a powerful influence in the Justinian government. As I have mentioned before, it is very difficult to tell the difference between a Jewish synagogue and a Samaritan synagogue; therefore, I believe many Samaritans simply began to tell people they were Jewish and most gentiles probably would not have been able to tell the difference. Therefore, the Samaritans would be able to practice their religion, more or less openly, without interference from the Christian dominated Justinian government.
OCCULT', a. [L. occultus, occulo; ob and celo, to conceal.]
Hidden from the eye or understanding; invisible; secret; unknown; undiscovered; undetected; as the occult qualities of matter.
The occult sciences are magic, necromancy, &c.
Occult lines, in geometry, are such as are drawn with the compasses or a pencil, and are scarcely visible.
The Samaritan synagogues must have been forced to be very careful during the reign of the Emperor Justinian and afterwards. If strangers showed up in their local congregations, the Samaritans would have needed to determine whether they were Jewish, or Christian, or Samaritan and treat them accordingly. It would probably have been a long and difficult vetting process. I believe this process eventually morphed into the secret societies we have today…more about that next week.