Imagens das páginas

descendants of Sarah; on which account they were also called Saracens.


Mullah Joab made the following beautiful observation: "We Jews have reason to rejoice that we are scattered abroad among all nations, and that we are a proverb and a byword among all nations; for we perceive by it the exact fulfilment of prophecy, saying, 'And the Lord shall scatter thee among all people, from the one end of the earth even unto the other;' which encourages us firmly to believe, that the rest of the prophecies, respecting the future privileges of Israel, will not disappoint us; for it is said, 'And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time, to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from JShinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea. _ And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed ofJudah from the four corners of the earth.'" I then observed, "And thus you can see, my brethren, that likewise those prophecies must have been fulfilled, that 'The Son of Man must have been cut off, but not for himself,' and that he was to be 'despised and rejected of men,' and that only your looking to him will be the way to your redemption, when the Lord shall take from you the heart of stone, and give you a heart of flesh; for only by having such a heart turned to God, you will be able to enjoy the privilege of being again citizens of Jerusalem."

Mullah Joab expounded the words in Isaiah xi. 12, "And shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth," in the following manner: outcast, in Hebrew nm) means cast to one place; and therefore they must be found in one country of the earth gathered together. fTflj dispersed, implies a being scattered in divers countries.


There are at Bokhara about 300 families of Jews turned to Mohammedanism; the Osbek do not intermarry with them, and they therefore take the daughters of the above described Gholoom, or slaves of Persians. They are employed as spies by Government.


It is the general opinion of the Jews of Bokhara, that Morecroft was poisoned by order of the late King of Bokhara, Shah Hydar; but the Jews and Mussulmans of Balkh, and Goosh-Bekee deny it. The King observed to Goosh-Bekee, "We must give to Joseph Wolff permission to travel through our country, in order that we may get rid of the bad name which is cast upon us by the death of Morecroft."


The four synagogues at Bokhara are in a deplorable state: small, ruined, and only one of them fit for a place of worship.

March 12.—I said to Mullah Joab, and other Jews of Bokhara, "I myself believe that the Jews will be restored to their own land; how do you understand the prediction of the death of the. Messiah in Daniel ix. as compared with the predictions of his future glory?" Joab desired me to tell him; and thus I preached to Joab, and to the rest, Jesus Christ and Him crucified, and his second coming in the clouds of heaven.


Some of the Jews say, that the Ten Tribes are beyond China, and one must cross the Sambatyon, in order to reach them; but the river is very stormy through the whole week, except on a Sabbath day: on the Sabbath, Gentiles are allowed to cross it, but not the Jews; for the Ten Tribes would say, "Why do you transgress the Law, by crossing the river on a Sabbath day?" and would stone him according to the Mosaical Law. Though this is mixed with fiction, there is no doubt that some of the tribes are in China; as I hope to prove, when I come to the narrative of my journey to Cashmeer. The tradition already mentioned of the emigration of the Children of Israel from Bokhara to Tsheen-Patsheen, i. e. China, shews, that some of the Ten Tribes must have been there; though I believe likewise the Benee-Israel around and at Bombay to be of the Ten Tribes. Rabbi Joseph Ben Zachariah Ben Masliah, from Sanaa in Yemen, now at Bokhara, a very learned man, who speaks as do all the Jews of Yemen, beautifully the Hebrew tongue, and also the Arabic language, tells me, that the Benee-Israel at Bankoot, near Bombay, are believed by the Jews of Yemen to be of the Ten Tribes; and that according to the opinion of the Jews of Yemen, the Affghauns are descendants of the strange wives, mentioned in Ezra x. 17, 18.


Came to Bokhara from Sanaa, to take possession of 4000 tomauns, which he heard his father, who died here, had left; but on his arrival at Bokhara, he obtained only thirty tomauns. He himself, as well as his father, had been rivals of the great Joseph Mooghrebee; and Rabbi Jos. Ben Zachariah even asserts, that his father had been poisoned by Rabbi Joseph Mooghrebee. We then turned the conversation to other subjects; I shewed him Isaiah liii. He said, that the sufferings of the Messiah, son of Joseph, not of David, were described.* I requested him to produce a text of Scripture, by which he could substantiate the Messiah, son of Joseph; he pointed out to me Ezechiel xxxvii. 9. "Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I will take away the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel

* The Jews believe the existence of two Messiahs: the Messiah, son of Joseph, whom they believe to be already in existence, but living in obscurity; he is destined to be slain: but after him, Messiah, the Son of David, will achieve the government of the world.

his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in my hand." I proved to him by the following verses of the same chapter, that the Prophet spoke distinctly of the future reunion of all the tribes of Israel. He confirmed the account, which I had heard, and mentioned in my former journals, that the Jews of Yemen had rejected the invitation of Ezra to return to Jerusalem, knowing that they should be brought into captivity again.

The Jews of Yemen, and those of Bokhara assert, that the black Jews of Cochin were the descendants of the slaves of Solomon; but I shall have an opportunity of refuting this assertion, when I come to the narrative of my personal researches among the Jews of Cochin. I shall also shew the reason for renouncing my former belief, that they were the descendants of those Arabs, converted to Judaism by several Rabbis, who, according to Moroodje Dahab, came to Mecca, when the Arabs worshipped Lat and Uthal. Moroodje Dahab says, "When those learned Rabbis entered the temple of Abraham, i. e. the Caaba, with the Law of Moses in their hands, the idols of Lat and Uthal fell down, and broke in pieces in the temple of God: and suddenly many of the tribes of Tub and Koreysh were converted to Judaism."

Rabbi Joseph Ben Zachariah believes firmly, that the temple of Mecca had been the temple of Abraham; and Harwee, an Affghaun writer, says, that the Jews went to Yemen after the captivity of Babylon by Nebuchadnezar, "For, as the temple of Solomon is destroyed," they said, "we must go to the temple of Mecca, which was built by Abraham." As there are Affghauns in great number at Bokhara, I there already began my enquiries, whether they were of the Ten Tribes of Israel.

Goosh-Bekee shewed me a Persian manuscript, called Mootalla Anwar, in which it is written, that the Affghauns are the descendants of the Copts in Egypt, who went with Moses and the Children of Israel out of Egypt, and turned Jews; and in the time of Mohammed they turned Mussulmans. If this be the fact, the Affghauns are the mixed multitude, (an, av) mentioned in Exodus xii. 38. The Affghaun language, or the Posh too, as it is termed, ought therefore to be compared with the Coptic language.


Told me, that according to the opinion of his late father-in-law, Rabbi Joseph Mooghrebee, three events were to happen before the arrival of the Messiah: First, Russia shall force her Jewish subjects to become soldiers. Secondly, The Ottoman Power shall subdue Russia; and the Ottoman Power shall again be subdued by Russia. Thirdly, Elijah shall come. The same told me also, that he had a great desire to go to England and become a freemason.

The Jews of Bokhara believe, that Cabool in Affghanistaun is the Cabul mentioned in Joshua xix. 27. If the Affghauns are descendants of the Jews, it may be that the Jews in Palestine gave the same name to the city which they built in Affghanistaun; just as the Jews, who settled in Spain in the time of Solomon, gave to the colonies in Spain the names of those cities which they inhabited in Palestine; for instance, Cadiz was formerly called Kadesh by the Jews of Kadesh; Maqueda was thus nominated by Jews of Maqueda in Palestine; Andalusia from Lus; Toledo from the Hebrew word nnSin (Toledoth) Generation.

Rabbi Pinehas Ben Simha told me, that 146 days before the arrival of the Messiah the son of David, the Messiah the son of Joseph must appear. I desired him to solve the difficulty in Psalm ex. 1. "The Lord said unto my Lord, sit thou at my right hand." 'Who was,' I asked him, 'The Lord of David?' Rabbi Pinchas replied, "The prophet said to David, 'the Lord saith to my (the prophet's) Lord, i. e. David, remain for a while with the Yeminite, i. e. Saul, until I have made thine enemies thy footstool.'" Thus translating Vd* 'My right hand' as a proper noun. In the first instance I shewed him, that David did not remain with Saul until his enemies were subdued, for he had to subdue them after Saul's death: beside this I shewed him the grammatical incorrectness of it.

March 14.—A Jew from Bashgala called on me; by whom I got an exact statement of the Jews in Curdistan belonging to Persia, which I have already inserted in the first part of my late journal about Tabreez.

Rabbi Matathia called on me. I shewed to him Isaiah vii. 14, and desired him to translate rroSy; he translated it Virgin:*

I. Who was the son of that Virgin?

Matathia. The Messiah.

/. Why is the birth of a son of a virgin such a stupendous miracle, as described in Isaiah vii. 11?

M. She must have had a son without a husband.

/. When did such an event take place?

M. I do not know.

/. It took place at the birth of Jesus son of the virgin Mary.

A long conversation then followed, about Jesus Christ and Him crucified, which lasted a whole night; for it is not the case, as some assert, that since I believe the personal reign of Christ, I have ceased to preach Jesus Christ crucified: I preached the personal reign of Christ at Jerusalem, because it is a consolation to Jew and Gentile, and a holding out of a beautiful prospect to the Jews; Christ crucified is the medicine, the remedy, and the only consolelation to the afflicted sinner. The cross of Christ is the banner to be lifted up against the enemy, when he surrounds us.

March 16.—I proclaimed the cross of Christ to Rabbi Gaday and to many other Jews.

My Turkomaun Awaz, who had brought me from Sarakhs to Bokhara, called on me; he advised me to go back with him to Sarakhs, saying, that he had heard that three Englishmen had

* Agreatproof. that the Christians have translated correctly those passages is, that Jews, who do not know of the controversy, which is going on between Christians and Jews, give to those words the same interpretation as Christians do.

been killed some years ago on their way to Bokhara. Awaz added, that if ever Hakham Eliahu from Bagdad, who wanted to make me suspected in the eyes of Goosh-Bekee, should come to Sarakhs, the Turkomauns would put him to death. I told him not to do such things.

March 17 Goosh-Bekee sent for me; a good many Mussulman

Mullahs had joined him and he introduced me to them. They asked me about the divinity of Jesus Christ. I replied again, "The fulness of the Godhead was in him bodily." They then asked me a great deal about Shoojah Almoolk, and Shah Zemaun, both of them Ex-Kings of Affghanistaun, now residing at Loodianah, and pensioned by the British Government. I was not able to give any account about them. After this, Goosh-Bekee took me alone, and said to me, "If ever you see the Governor General in India, or the King of England at London, tell them, that the King, the Mullahs, and myself wish, that the English Government should send an Ambassador to this place, and that he may bring his wife with him, and as soon as he is charged, he may take her back with him; (for there is a law existing at Bokhara, that females once entering Bokhara cannot leave it again;) and we wish farther some English officers to teach our troops the European discipline; and if the Ambassador would bring some presents of watches for the King, they would be acceptable: the Governor of Orenburg has lately sent us 700 Persian manuscripts; beside this, a physician would be welcome at Bokhara."

March 19.—This day was a joyful day to me: Rabbi Pinehas Ben Simha professed his belief in the Lord Jesus Christ; he was fully convinced by the prophecies I pointed out to him. He told me that Rabbi Pinehas the elder had been convinced of the same truth; he advised me however not to speak with every Jew at Bokhara about religion, as many Jews are ignorant and obstinate. I have addressed the following


"The Lord gives his covenant of peace, unto Rabbi Pinehas.

Know ye, that I, Joseph Wolff, believe, that Jesus of Nazareth is the Messiah, who was cut off, but not for himself; and that Jesus of Nazareth is the Messiah, who has given himself up unto death, and iaterceded for his enemies; and that Jesus of Nazareth is that Messiah, who shall come like the son of man in the clouds of heaven, and shall redeem Israel, saith Joseph Wolff the Englishman."

The following tribes of Osbek are within the city of Bokhara: Mankid, of which tribe the present King is. Kaseagle. Ajamyle. Mostan. Mengetshik. Karaboing. Sanses. Moghul. Antijane. Monas.

The Nogays, a Tartar tribe coming from Cassan, Astrachan, and other parts of Russia, are employed as interpreters with the Russians, and as clerks; for they read and write the Russian tongue.

« AnteriorContinuar »