“Listen, O Isles, unto me: and hearken ye people, from afar……..The children which thou shalt have, after thou hast lost the other, shall say again in thine ears, The place is too strait for me; give place to me that I may dwell.” (Isaiah 49: 1,20)
In this series of Monarchs of Destiny, we have looked at the lives and significance of four monarchs. With Edward I, we witnessed the third overturn of the Throne of David as prophesied by the prophet Ezekiel (Ezekiel 21: 26,27). We also saw the introduction of parliament and how Edward ceded it more power than he would have liked because of his great need of money to fight his war with Scotland. With Henry VIII, we saw how parliamentary power weakened with the Tudors and how Henry was extremely autocratic. Yet, Henry’s reign was indeed a significant time in God’s Great Plan, as the Reformation came to pass and Britain became a European power for the first time. With Elizabeth I, we watched as this great English monarch led British Ephraim into the final period of punishment and out of the shadow of the other great European powers. And we witnessed the firm entrenchment of the Reformation after a short setback under Bloody Mary’s reign. Yet, as powerful and autocratic as Elizabeth I was, she did try to work in concert with parliament on many issues. On the other hand, her successor, King James I, although he was also autocratic, struggled with a stronger parliament, particularly for his money needs. Still, it was his reign that saw the partial fulfillment of the two sticks as Scotland and England became one nation (Ezekiel 37: 19-22). Of course, his reign also saw the introduction of the Authorized King James Version of the Bible. Our next monarch of destiny, King George III, didn’t have the same freedom from parliamentary sanctions. He tried to pursue an autocratic style, but couldn’t and was burdened with a parliament that made some dramatic errors of judgment, errors that cast a dark shadow on his long reign. He reigned from 1760 to 1820.
It almost seems a travesty of justice that King George III is primarily remembered for two unfavourable events in his life, that is, losing the American colonies and going mad. For, in reality, his reign was placed at a highly significant time in God’s Great Plan for Israel. To view its importance, we have to go back to Genesis 35: 10-12 when God spoke to Jacob at Bethel and said to him, “……Israel shall be thy name……..a nation and a company of nations shall be of thee, and kings shall come out of thy loins; and the land which I gave Abraham and Isaac, to thee I will give it, and to thy seed after thee will I give the land.” Many scholars mistake the land as being just the lands of Canaan promised Abraham in Genesis 13: 14,15 but overlook the vision God granted to Isaac (Genesis 26: 3-5) wherein Isaac was shown all the countries in which his seed would occupy. It was these countries to which the prophet Nathan referred when he carried God’s Word to King David, “Moreover I will appoint a place for my people Israel….” (2 Samuel 7: 10). Genesis 35: 11 set the stage for the nation and company (commonwealth) of nations. The leaders of those nations were identified when Jacob Israel adopted, so to speak, the two sons of his beloved son Joseph and set the stage for their destiny. Speaking of Manasseh, the eldest, God said, “…he shall also become a people, and he also shall be great….” Of the younger Ephraim, He said, “but truly his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his seed shall become a multitude of nations……….and he set Ephraim before Manasseh….” (Genesis 48: 19,20). Then, in his blessing of all the tribes, it is clear that the tribe of Joseph was to be the leading tribe of all Israel, with great possessions and wealth and special protection from the Lord God Almighty (Genesis 22-26).
We know the tribes later went into Egyptian captivity, were led to Sinai by Moses, brought into a (marriage) relationship with God as the Kingdom of God was formally established (Exodus 19) and the Constitution (Laws) were codified. The national punishment for disobedience was clearly identified when God told His New Bride, “And if ye will not yet for all this hearken unto me, then I will punish you seven times more for your sins” (Leviticus 26: 18). Those who read “Monarchs of Destiny-Elizabeth I” in the September, 2001 Thy Kingdom Come know that the conversion process brings the seven times to 2,520 years. Then too, most readers are knowledgeable about the subsequent conquest of Canaan, the division of the lands, the beginning of the Throne of God with David as its first occupant, the split in the Kingdom after Solomon, the wickedness of the people and the beginning of the seven periods of punishment as God permitted the Assyrians to conquer the House of Israel and most of the House of Judah (the separated nations) and banish them from Canaan. Ultimately, we know that they made their way across Europe. The tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh, the inheritors of the Covenant God made with Abraham (1 Chronicles 5: 1) and importantly, the inheritors of the very name “Israel” (Genesis 48: 16), arrived in the “isles of the sea” over the ensuing centuries, along with great numbers of the other tribes.
History has shown us that the tribe of Manasseh was first attacked and brought under submission by the Assyrians in 745 BC and the tribe of Ephraim was conquered in 721 BC. In the ensuing years, the Israelites in these nations were sent to Northern Assyria and the punishment promised them in Leviticus 26: 18 began. By the time of George III, those periods of punishment for the sons of Joseph were set to expire.
I suppose, depending on one’s viewpoint, that George was regarded in quite opposite ways. To the Americans, he was and probably still is, looked upon as a greedy and overbearing monarch and is still hated by many to this very day. Yet, to his subjects of the day, he was popular and conscientious. He became heir to the throne on the death of his father, was the third monarch of the House of Hanover and the first to have been born in Britain and to use English as his first language. George devoted the required time to read all government papers and he took a strong interest in policy. His political influence proved most decisive on many occasions and he could be most determined when he felt the cause was just. For example, it was primarily his opposition to ending the war with the colonies that kept it going until 1783. Another example took place in 1801, when Prime Minister William Pitt (the younger), wanted to grant Catholics full civil rights. George III felt his coronation oath to uphold the rights of the Church of England was such that he forced Pitt’s resignation. Still, on the other hand, this was a monarch who fostered a progressive and cultured environment in England. Literature enjoyed a heyday as the writings of men like Scott, Burns, Shelley, Byron and Wordsworth flourished; great artists like Gainsborough and Reynolds created their masterpieces and the British Museum was established (65,000 of his books were later given to the Museum). George personally founded the Royal Academy of Arts. In science and invention, the progress was remarkable during George’s reign, as things like the steam engine; the first machinery, canal construction and spinning frames became realities. Yet, George was a staunch family man as well, devoted to his wife and fifteen children. Disappointed in his sons’ (and some of his brothers’) selection of wives, he pushed the Marriages Act of 1772 through parliament, which calls for the consent of the reigning sovereign for the marriage on any lineal descendant, with few exceptions.
So many other momentous events took place in the reign of George III. But perhaps this is an appropriate time to return to our opening Bible passage from Isaiah 49: 1, 20. God begins by saying, “Listen O Isles, the children which thou shalt have, after thou has lost the other….” God said, “after thou have lost the other.” Of course, this part of the passage refers to America Manasseh, the great nation of whom Jacob Israel spoke of in Genesis 48: 19, 20 thirty-five centuries earlier. So, significantly, it would not have mattered who sat on the Throne of David (England) at the time, Isaiah’s prophecy was going to happen, for God had measured the times. The Bible tells us in 1 Chronicles 5: 26, “And the God of Israel stirred up…..Tilgathpilneser king of Assyria and he carried them away, even the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the half tribe of Manasseh and brought them unto Halah, and Habor, and Hara, and to the river Gozan, unto this day.” History has shown this attack to have taken place in 745 BC, thus Manesseh’s seven times punishment began. So, let’s look at how the prophecy unfolded.
- In 745 BC, he King of Assyria begins to war against the tribes of Manasseh. Exactly seven times (7 x 360 years) later, in 1776 AD, the American Declaration of Independence was issued.
- In 732 BC, the Assyrians deported the conquered half tribe of Manasseh to Northern Assyria. Exactly 2,520 years later (seven times), in 1789 AD, George Washington becomes the first President of the United States of America under its new Constitution
So, as prophesied, the “other” was lost. King George III is often blamed, yet the break was simply a plank in God’s Plan. In truth, George III wasn’t even the instrument that God employed as the stimulus for the break. It was an unwise Parliament that developed the Stamp Act of 1765 and the Townshend duties of 1767 on tea, paper and other products, legislation that led to the War of Independence. It should be pointed out that George III became hated in America more so because he linked himself with that Parliament.
George III was monarch at the time when Britain Ephraim came out from under their 2,520 years of punishment as well. The Bible tells us, “And it came to pass in the fourth year of king Hezekiah……….that Shalmaneser, king of Assyria came up against Samaria (meaning the northern Kingdom or House of Israel) and beseiged it……….And the King of Assyria did carry away Israel unto Assyria and put them in Halah and in Habor by the river of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes” (2 Kings 18: 9-11). History tells us this invasion took place in 721 BC and the remaining tribes of the ten tribed Northern House of Israel, including the tribe of Ephraim, are deported to Northern Assyria. Exactly 2,520 years later (seven times), in 1800 AD, Great Britain and Ireland united to form the United Kingdom. The ruler was a descendant of King David of the tribe of Judah.
God is truly amazing. He established an intricate plan that has so many variables, yet it employs the frailties of His People to bring it about. Re-quoting Isaiah’s prophecy, “The children which thou shalt have, after thou hast lost the other, shall say again in thine ears, The place is too strait for me; give place to me that I may dwell.” So there were to be other children, in fact, there had to be, because Jacob had said of Ephraim (Genesis 48: 19,20), “his seed shall become a multitude of nations.” It was during King George III’s reign that the extension of English rule to Australia, Canada, New Zealand and many other parts of the world took place as the seeds of the Commonwealth of Nations were sown.
Amazingly, many other important events took place under the rule of George III. To name just a few, the passing of the East India bill, the great naval victories of Lord Nelson and the final defeat of Napoleon by the Duke of Wellington are of great significance. Probably no monarchial reign from the time of Solomon was more significant in the history of the Israelites. Indeed, during George III’s reign, Britain had come of age; the seven times punishment was over and a glorious century lay ahead. Of course, there is more to Isaiah’s prophecy beyond Verse 20 but it relates to the time beyond George III and shall be left for a future study.
Sadly, it is strongly suspected that King George III was inflicted with a little understood disease known as “porphria” and it created spells of madness, the last in 1810, which resulted in personal rule being handed over to his son, who later was to become George IV. George III died in 1820, deaf, blind and mad. It has often been said that those with the greatest gifts invariably have rough roads to tread. George was certainly a gifted man and it goes without saying that his journey was anything but smooth. Still, it was under George’s kingship that Great Britain emerged as the world’s greatest ever-colonial power. Indeed, there is little doubt that George III was one of the great “Monarchs of Destiny.”