The Ethiopian Orthodox Church and the Ark of the Covenant

>> Thursday, May 27, 2010

This is a Castle in the City of Gondor and the biggest market in Ethiopia.

There is one big mystery surrounding the Bible and that is, "what ever happened to the Ark of the Covenant?" This story fascinates people to the point that even Hollywood made a movie about it.

There are a couple of possible scenerios. One scenerio is that it ended up in Egypt which is what "Raiders of the Lost Ark" was about. A more plausible scenerio is that it ended up in Ethiopia.

There is a story in Ethiopia that goes something like this:

Solomon had a wife named the Queen of Sheba. According to the Ethiopian tradition, the Queen of Sheba was an Ethiopian Monarch. Sheba had two sons named Menelik and Azarius. The Queen of Sheba returned to Ethiopia to discover that she was carrying Solomon's child. When Menelik turned 20, he traveled from Ethiopia to Israel and arrived at his father's court. There he was instantly recognized and accorded great honor. After a year had passed, however, the elders of the land became jealous of him. The King sent Menelik back to Ethiopia and the first-born sons of all the elders had to accompany him. One of these sons name Azarius stole the Ark from its place in the Holy of Holies and brought it to Ethiopia. They assumed that God willed it since God let him have it. Therefore, the Ark was left in Ethiopia.

There are a couple of things I would like to point out that makes it seem like it is possible that Ethiopia has the Ark of the Covenant in the City of Axum.

One is the Falasha Jews. There were a group of Jews that lived in Ethiopia called the Falasha Jews. They were recognized to be Jewish and were allowed to return to Israel based on Israel's comming home policy. These Jews celerabrated traditions only up to the 1st Temple of Solomon. They didn't know anything about the 2nd Temple's traditions that are celebrated among todays Jews. It is possible that they are the Jews that came to Ethiopia with the Ark of the Covenant when Azarius stole it from the Holy of Holies. Azarius stole the Ark before the second Temple of Solomon was built.

Another interesting fact is that the entire Ethiopian Orthodox Church is centered around the Ark of the Covenant. Every Orthodox Church in Ethiopia has a replica of the Ark of the Covenant within them.

Every member of the Orthodox church will claim that they have the Ark of the Covenant.

So the question remains, who has the Ark of the Covenant? Does Ethiopia really have it and if they do, why won't they let anybody see it? And if Israel finds out that they have it, are they going to want it back?

Gondor was founded in the seventeenth century by Fasilidas, the same emperor who had rebuilt the church of Saint Mary of Zion at Axum. Outside the city of Gonder (until recently) dwelled the Black Jews of Ethiopian, also called the Flasha Jews. The Flasha Jews were converted to Judaism by the Jews who migrated to Ethiopia with Azarus and the Ark of the Covenant.


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