British Empire WW1 Poster 1914-1918. via Wikimedia Commons
The Young Lions of Tarshish
The Young Lions of Tarshish Video
First World War Recruiting Poster.Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
One of the main ideas in Prophecy Workshop is that, prophetically speaking, Great Britain is Tarshish and her ex- colonies are the cubs of Tarshish. For more on this you can look up the web page “Great Britain is Tarshish”
However this is not my own idea. I first heard about it the 1990s through the bible teaching of a man called Roger Price. Since then I have found a book on the subject written by an Australian pastor in the 1940s. Now I have found that the idea goes back at least to the 17th Century. In other words, ever since English speaking people have had access to a bible they can read, the idea of England, or Great Britain, being Tarshish has been prevalent.
I want to look at some of individual Tarshish nations but first I would like to examine the history of the idea to show that it is not some new theory but is actually something that has been around for a long time.
Prior to the publication of the Authorised Version (King James Version) in 1611 there were very few bibles available to read in English. It was only in the 17th Century that the bible became widely read by ordinary people. When people did start reading it they became aware of such things as the millennial reign of Christ and the prophecies relating to the Last Days. People started to realise that the bible is not just a history book. It’s a story about God’s plan for the world and about our future.
The return of the Jews to their own land is clearly prophesied in the bible and this became something that was picked up on in 17th Century England. There was an explosion in religious discussion at the time as people finally had access to the scriptures. In 1621 Sir Henry Finch published a book entitled The World’s Great Restauration, or the Calling of the Jews. He clearly stated that the promises of God to Israel were not figurative or allegorical but literal and the Jews would have a literal return to their own land.
List of English bibles available up until the publication of the KJV.
John Owen. Attributed to John Greenhill, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Many other books on prophetic matters were published. In fact the Dutch theologian Hugo Grotius (1583-1645) stated that eighty books concerned with the millennium had been published in England by the middle of the 17th Century.
Many puritans believed that the political and religious upheavals England was experiencing in the 17th Century would open up the way for the kingdom of Christ. The Puritan preacher John Owen had a great influence on Oliver Cromwell and parliament both before and after the execution of Charles I in 1649. He saw the massive changes brought about by Cromwell as part of God’s work. He exhorted parliament, the army, and all of England to persevere in their political and military program until.
'we who were not a people at all may be a people to the praise of the God of all; that you who rule over men may be just ... that we who are under rule may sit under our vines and fig trees . . . labouring to carry on the kingdom of the Prince of Peace.
George Stanley Faber
Owen was of Welsh descent although born in England. He pleaded with parliament for the religious needs of Wales and Ireland as well as England and also accompanied Cromwell on his Scottish campaign. This helps to illustrate how the spread of the bible had ignited religious debate throughout the British Isles.
The idea of England, and later Britain having a purpose in God’s prophetic plan was firmly planted in the nation. Throughout the 18th Century the continual state of war with France and Spain led many protestants to see Britain as the bulwark against the papist Antichrist. Eventually in the nineteenth century the rise of Napoleon seemed to confirm Britain’s position as the last bastion of freedom. George Stanley Faber (1773 - 1854) was an Anglican theologian who wrote many theological works, many concerned with bible prophecy. He pictured Napoleon as the Antichrist at the the head of a revived Roman Empire. He also identified Britain's great maritime power as the Ships of Tarshish (Isaiah 60:9).
John Cumming, lampooned in Vanity Fair magazine for his views on the end times. (1872)
In 1855 a Scottish preacher named John Cumming published two books on bible prophecy. Cumming was a well known figure in his day and was particularly known for his interest in eschatology, or the end times. In one of the books, entitled The End, he identifies the nations of the great Gog alliance in Ezekiel 38 and names Russia and Germany as being chief among them. He also identifies the leader of the resistance to this confederacy, the Merchants of Tarshish, as England.
The idea of England, or Great Britain, as Tarshish was now established and from this came the idea of the young lions of Ezekiel 38 being the colonies that sprang from Britain and this idea continued on into the 20th Century as the nations of the British empire developed. In 1920 Reginald T. Naish published a book called The Midnight Hour and After in which he specifically identified the colonies of Great Britain as the young lions of Ezekiel. The idea seems to have become embedded somehow in national consciousness as many cartoons and posters depicted British colonies as young lions.
In the 20th Century the ties between Great Britain and the USA became strengthened following the alliances of the First and Second World Wars. An article by Louis S Bauman was published in The Sunday School Times in 1942 where he depicted Great Britain's former colonies of Australia, Canada, New Zealand and America as being the young cubs of Ezekiel.
The idea of Britain as Tarshish and her colonies as the young lions of Tarshish is therefore not a new one. Each individual young lion nation has its own destiny and will continue into the millennial period. This is something that I want to examine in the next series of videos if God gives me the time to make them.
Britannia with the British Lion and Uncle Sam with the American Bald Eagle on a World War I poster
Landing of the Pilgrims, by Charles Lucy, Painting. Scan by NYPL, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
The first British colony was in North America. There were some false starts in establishing colonies but eventually The first permanent English settlement of Jamestown, in the colony of Virginia, was established. It was established by the Virginian company of London and almost failed in 1610 but just managed to survive following the arrival of a resupply ship in the James River.
Jamestown had a connection with slavery and in 1619 the first recorded slaves imported from Africa to the British colonies arrived. The slave trade was a dark cloud over the British colonies until the slave trade in the British empire was abolished in 1807.
The real birth of America came in 1620 with the arrival of the Mayflower. If you have seen my videos on the Ships of Tarshish you will know that I regard many of the famous ships that came from Britain as being prophetically significant.
The Mayflower Compact was made at a point when the Mayflower had anchored at Cape Cod and supplies were running low. A decision had to be made by the crew and the pilgrims on whether to stay and set up a colony or leave. To resolve this problem a compact was made among the pilgrims and crew and was signed by 41 male members of the group affirming their decision to stay and settle.
The Compact was an example of a form of democracy where important decisions were discussed and agreed upon by the community. The Mayflower represented a hope for a better future based on faith. It represented the union of the spiritual standing of freeborn people with their political standing as people with a democratic right.
From this point on the future of America was marked by an emphasis on individual rights, democracy and the rule of law.
William Bradford's transcription of the Mayflower Compact. William Bradford (1590-1657), Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
All these things are under attack today but they are a product of the Reformation and the understanding that people should be free to pursue their own destinies.
The American colonies developed extremely quickly and in just 100 years from the arrival of the Mayflower Americans had their own culture and identity which was distinct from that of Great Britain. In terms of the young lion analogy the lion was no longer a cub and was starting to assert itself.
All through American history there have been times when Americans have gone away from God and times when they have come back. The Great Awakening of the 18th Century occurred mainly in the 1730s. The colonies had forgotten their puritan zeal and this had almost been replaced by zeal for material wealth. The idea that each person needed a personal conversion to Jesus Christ was gradually being whittled away in the churches.
Benjamin Franklin’s The Way to Wealth published in 1758 was a bestseller in contrast to the puritan religious tracts that had been bestsellers in the 17th Century
Amazingly it was the preaching of a handful of inspired preachers that turned things around. Their names are still well know, Jonathan Edwards and George Whitfield were probably the most famous. Their message was one of the need for personal repentance and acceptance of Jesus Christ in order to be saved from hell and receive eternal life.
The colonies turned back to their founding belief in personal salvation despite resistance from the established institutions of the day. However this pattern of renewed zeal followed by a gradual cooling off in faith has repeated itself through American history and there have been at least four Awakenings so far.
In 1776 the Declaration of Independence marked the break of the thirteen colonies with Great Britain. This was the first of the young lions to achieve independence from its parent and in some ways it was different from the other colonies that broke away from Britain.
Jonathan Edwards by Henry Augustus Loop. Princeton University, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Declaration of Independence by John Trumbull, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons John Trumbull
Unlike in the cases of the other colonies, the breakaway required an actual war in order to happen.
This was a clash on two levels. On one level it was a political clash about who ruled America. On another level it was a spiritual clash pitting freedom of religious belief against institutional religion. America had to go its own way. It could not fulfil its destiny as a colony. In the same way that the time comes for a child to grow up and leave home the time came for America to be independent
After the War of Independence was over it was recognised in Britain that the relationship with all its colonies was changed forever. Lord Mahon, the 3rd Earl Stanhope, was a politician who was active at the time of the Battle of Saratoga, the decisive battle of the American Revolution. His comment on it was: -
It not merely changed the relation of England and the feelings of Europe toward these insurgent colonies, but it has modified for all time to come, the connection between every colony and every parent state. - LORD MAHON
Surrender of General Burgoyne at Saratoga. John Trumbull, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
In other words American independence meant that for every colony there was now the prospect of a free future.
As time passed there grew a general recognition of the American character that we call sturdy independence. In 1851 Sir Edward Creasy published a book called The Fifteen Decisive Battles of the World. He included the battle of Saratoga as one of the history changing battles. Commentating on the American character he said:-
And when we examine the character of this population, no one can look on the fearless energy, the sturdy determination, the aptitude for local self-government, the versatile alacrity, and the unresting spirit of enterprise which characterises the Anglo-Americans, without feeling that he here beholds the true moral elements of progressive might.
This may appear antiquated to us today but actually the spirit of the Reformation is clear in this passage. There was a dawning recognition that man was no longer a subject of political or religious authorities. He was free to choose his path and determine his own future.
This was America's gift to the world, despite its terrible struggles with slavery. The other young lion nations always had the example of America in mind when seeking their own freedom as nations.
The Dominion ofCanada
Canadian Rockies. Andreas Roth, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Canada is an amazing country. It is the second largest by area in the world. It currently has the tenth largest GDP in the world. On almost every metric of democracy, quality of life, freedom, prosperity etc, it ranks high. All this for a nation that is extremely young. It achieved Dominion Status (self governing) in 1867. The last province to join it was Newfoundland in 1949. Canada is a nation of vast spaces and epic grandeur. This is part of its spiritual heritage. It is a northern country with an extreme climate. For much of its development there has been an emphasis on survival and mutual cooperation. It has more emphasis on social and communal cohesion than the USA and less on individualism
Unlike the United States, it achieved its independence peacefully and has generally resolved problems in a constitutional rather than violent manner. To understand this video you will need to understand what the Young Lions of Tarshish are. This is explained in the first video of this series entitled The Young Lions of Tarshish.
The death of General Wolfe after the decisive success of the British forces on the Plains of Abraham and the subsequent capture of Quebec in 1759. Benjamin West, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
"Conference at Québec in 1864, to settle the basics of a union of the British North American Provinces". Photographer: James Ashfield, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Canada was inhabited mostly by indigenous peoples until the 15th Century when European settlers arrived. French and British expeditions, explored, colonised and fought for territory. The colony of New France was claimed in 1534. French and British settlements grew over the next two hundred years but after the French defeat in the Seven Years War in 1763 all of Canada was essentially ceded to British rule.
Our main concern here is Canada’s status as a Young Lion nation. After the American War of Independence the 1783 Treaty of Paris recognized the independence of the newly formed United States and set the terms of peace, ceding British North American territories south of the Great Lakes and east of the Mississippi River to the United States. Many loyalists to the crown emigrated from the USA to Canada and increased its English speaking population. Canada was divided into mainly French speaking Lower Canada and mainly English speaking Upper Canada each with their own legislatures.
In 1840 the Act of Union abolished these legislatures and established The Province of Canada as a new political entity. Canada then expanded westwards and in 1867 the Constitution Act defined Canada as a federal dominion with its own constitutional structure.
Canada developed along constitutional lines and never completely severed its link with Great Britain. In both World Wars Canada immediately supported Britain in its fight.
Christianity of different denominations was brought to Canada by the Europeans. The French brought Catholicism but also many Protestant Huguenots emigrated to Canada with their own Protestant Christianity. Upper Canada, what we know as Ontario, was heavily evangelised by Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians and evangelical Anglicans. There were also many other non-conformist groups such as the Brethren. It is estimated that by the end of the 19th Century seventy percent of people in Ontario were evangelical Christians.
Canada in the early 20th Century was probably the most evangelized of all the Tarshish nations. It became known for stability, law and order and quality of life. All these things are under attack today.
As a Tarshish nation, Canada’s relations with Israel have generally been good. When Stephen Harper was Prime Minister (2006 - 2015) the relationship strengthened considerably. The current incumbent, Justin Trudeau, has not been such a strong supporter of Israel. Like all nations, Canada is in a spiritual battle. The Christian evangelical roots that made it a great country are being eroded. Some of the great Canadian qualities of mutual cooperation and communal spirit have somehow been morphed into government control and restrictions on personal freedom. This is a process which is happening everywhere.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper 2005.Herman Chung / © Office of the Prime Minister of Canada, Copyrighted free use, via Wikimedia Commons
In the conferences and negotiations that brought about the confederation of Canada, the Fathers of Confederation wanted to call the new country the “Kingdom of Canada.” However, the British government feared that this imperial-sounding name would offend the Americans. New Brunswick’s Sir Leonard Tilley suggested “Dominion of Canada.” Tilley was inspired by the passage in the Bible from Psalm 72:8, referring to God’s dominion: “He shall have dominion also from sea to sea, and from the river unto the ends of the earth.”
Canada is consequently officially called The Dominion of Canada to this day. A nation whose destiny is ordained by God and whose Lord is Jesus Christ.
Like all the Tarshish nations Canada is a sheep nation and shall be saved. See the link for a prophecy regarding this: -
Colour lithograph of the First Fleet entering Port Jackson on January 26 1788, drawn in 1888. Creator: E. Le Bihan. State Library of New South Wales, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Like all the Young Lion nations Australia is a country where people want to live. It is one of the most desired countries to emigrate to and like Canada scores high on all metrics for quality of life, freedom, prosperity and so on. It is unique in the world in that it is the only country in the world that covers an entire continent.
In fact everything about Australia is different. It is the oldest, driest and flattest continent.The flora and fauna are unique and it has incredibly diverse terrain from tropical jungles to snowy mountaintops.
It’s story as a Young Lion nation started with the arrival of James Cooke in the Endeavour in 1770. He charted the East coast of Australia and claimed it for Britain, calling the new territory New South Wales. Britain lost its colonies in North America in 1783 and in response to this the British government decide to send a fleet of ships to New South Wales to establish a penal colony. This fleet is known as The First Fleet.
On 13 May 1787 the fleet under the command of Captain Arthur Phillip, with over 1400 people (convicts, marines, sailors, civil officers and free settlers), left from Portsmouth, England and took a journey of over 15,000 miles and over 250 days to eventually arrive in Botany Bay, New South Wales, where a penal colony would become the first British settlement in Australia.
Aboard this first fleet was the Reverend Richard Johnson. He had been recommended as chaplain for the prison colony of New South Wales by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, an Anglican missionary organisation that still exists today. Johnson was known for his enthusiasm for preaching the gospel. John Newton, an Anglican cleric and writer of Amazing Grace, and William Wilberforce, the famous abolitionist and evangelical Anglican, both persuaded the Prime Minister, William Pitt, to accept Richard Johnson’s nomination.
Johnson was an evangelical and brought with him over 4,000 pieces of literature including bibles, prayer books and hymn books.
Richard Johnson (c1756-1827). Garnet Terry, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
A sandstone Gothic Revival monument in Sydney erected in commemoration of the first Christian service held in Australia (3 February 1788)
On Sunday 3rd February 1788 Johnson conducted the first Christian service on Australian soil. The text he preached on was Psalm 116:12-13
[Psa 116:12-13 KJV] 12 What shall I render unto the LORD [for] all his benefits toward me? 13 I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the LORD.
Part of Johnson’s responsibility as chaplain was education and he set up a school that provided universal education to all the children in the colony. The Australian church school movement was supported financially by various Christian societies in Britain and also by missionaries who came out to teach. Consequently the Australian education system was rooted in the Christian church rather than in government legislation.
From this promising start the colony of Australia grew, and grew fast. In 100 years it had grown into a fully developed nation in its own right. Settlers came to it mainly from Europe and brought their various faiths with them. Different denominations became established all over the colony
On January 1, 1901, the six colonies that made up Australia were joined together to create the Commonwealth of Australia, a self-governing Dominion in the British Empire. Baptist, Methodists, Anglicans, the Salvation Army and other Christian organisations established themselves in Australia. Today they are in decline but the Pentecostal church is still growing.
As a Young Lion nation it has maintained its links with Great Britain and has followed a similar constitutional path to that of Canada. In both World Wars Australia immediately entered the conflict on the side of Britain and its troops were known for their tenacity and courage.
Also Australia has had an interesting relationship with Israel. Australia and Israel share a close relationship with significant people-to-people links and broad commercial engagement. Australia established diplomatic relations with Israel in 1949. The Australian Embassy in Tel Aviv, and the Israeli Embassy in Canberra, were both opened in that year.
A recruiting poster for the Australian Imperial Force in the Second World War
Australian troops played a pivotal role in expelling the Ottoman Empire from Palestine in 1917. The charge of the Australian Light Horse at Beersheba in 1917 overran the Turkish trenches and secured victory for the British Empire’s Egyptian Expeditionary Force. The Battle of Beersheba was a coming of age event for the nation of Australia and marked its entry onto the world stage. It also marked the genesis of Australia’s special relationship with Israel. Many evangelicals at the time saw the Australian light horsemen as fulfilling biblical prophecy.
Without Beersheba, the British and her allies could not have liberated the Holy Land, Israel could not be reborn, Jerusalem could not be liberated and prophecy could not be fulfilled.
Australia is a nation founded and established by God and built upon the rock of Jesus Christ. It has problems, just as any other nation, but its future is assured.
Australia is often referred to as the Lucky Country because of its immense natural resources and lifestyle. However I prefer to think of that first sermon preached by the Reverend Richard Johnson on God’s benefits as being prophetic. Australia has been blessed with God’s benefits, spiritual and natural. It’s a country founded by common people, by outcasts and ordinary people seeking a better life. Out of that mix a unique culture has been created which is friendly, easy going and hard working.
The Young Lion nations are sheep nations rather than goat nations (Matthew 25:31-46) and therefore have an eternal future. Australia is literally known for its sheep. It is the world’s largest sheep exporter. Prophetically there is something about Australian culture that appeals to people all over the world. It is a nation that has a prophetic mandate to reach out to people everywhere with the gospel.
New Zealand Video
New Zealand can truly be referred to as the ends of the earth. The Wikipedia article on New Zealand says the following: -
The islands of New Zealand were the last large habitable land to be settled by humans. Between about 1280 and 1350, Polynesians began to settle in the islands and then developed a distinctive Māori culture. In 1642, the Dutch explorer Abel Tasman became the first European to sight and record New Zealand.
Our interest in NZ as a Young Lion nation begins in 1769, when British explorer James Cook mapped almost the entire coastline. New Zealand became known to the world and gradually missionary activity started. In the early 19th century a Maori chief named Chief Ruatara met an Anglican priest, named the Reverend Samuel Marsden, in Sydney Australia. Ruatara was impressed with the way Marsden was preaching from the bible and so he invited him to come to his tribe in Oihi Bay, Rangihoua, New Zealand.
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The Rev Thomas Kendall and the Maori chiefs Hongi and Waikato, oil on canvas. James Barry, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
On Christmas Day 1814 Marsden preached the first Christian sermon on New Zealand soil. He preached on Luke 2:10.
[Luk 2:10 KJV] 10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
The Maoris didn’t understand the sermon but they asked Ruatara for the meaning. He replied that in its time its fruit would come. Marsden stayed for a few months and then returned to Sydney. Ruatara died a few days after he left. However the seed of the gospel had been planted. It took a while to grow in Maori culture because of the language barrier. For the gospel to spread the Maoris needed the bible in their own language. An Anglican missionary called Thomas Kendall began working on the Maori language. Kendall learned te reo Māori, the Māori language, while in New Zealand, and wrote the primer A korao no New Zealand; or, the New Zealander's first book (1815).This was the first book written in Māori.
Lord Plunket declaring New Zealand a Dominion, 1907. The Press, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
In the 1820s Henry and William Williams arrived in New Zealand. Henry Williams, as leader of the Anglican Church Missionary Society, coordinated the various missionary translation efforts that were taking place and published the first scriptures in Maori in 1827.This was a collection of portions of scripture and it proved very popular. A printing press was imported from London and eventually the New Testament was printed in the Maori language. Once the Maori had the scriptures they began to spread the gospel among themselves.
In the space of 30 years from Marsden’s first sermon the gospel had spread throughout the whole of New Zealand.
European settlers arrived and the country developed fast throughout the nineteenth century. In 1907, at the request of the New Zealand Parliament, King Edward VII proclaimed New Zealand a Dominion within the British Empire,reflecting its self-governing status.
New Zealand members of the Long Range Desert Group pause for tea in the Western Desert, 27 March 1941.
As a Young Lion nation New Zealand followed a similar path to Australia and kept its links with Britain. It immediately joined with Britain in both World Wars. In World War 2 New Zealand had the highest per capita casualty rate of any country in the Commonwealth. New Zealand troops were used as an elite fighting unit and earned a great reputation. German commander Erwin Rommel, talking about his North African campaign was even quoted as saying:
"If I had to take hell, I would use the Australians to take it and the New Zealanders to hold it.
"If I'd had one division of Māori, I would have taken the canal in a week. If I'd had three, I'd have taken Baghdad."
New Zealand is a small country that has achieved great things. It often tops the charts in such things as “best place to live” and “best country in the world”. Like all the Young Lion nations it is a place where people want to live. It is known for its great natural beauty and everything about New Zealand is attractive to people around the world.
Milford Sound. Julius Silver, via Wikimedia Commons
Its destiny is to bring tidings of great joy to people around the world which was the theme of Marsden’s first sermon. If the USA represents God’s power, Canada His dominion, Australia His benefits then New Zealand represents the joy and beauty of the Lord.
All the Young Lion nations will support Israel and like Australia, Israel maintains strong ties with Israel. This is the destiny of all the Commonwealth nations. They will support Israel up until the time of the Rapture. If the Lord allows it I will make a video about the sheep and goat judgement of the nations in Matthew chapter 25. This is a judgement of nations and one aspect of it will be how the nations have treated Christ’s brethren, the Jews.