The Archers Have Sorely Grieved Joseph          Study No. 196



he first thing I thought of when Muslim terrorists struck the Twin Towers of New York and the Pentagon, was Genesis 49:22-26, “Joseph is a fruitful bough, even a fruitful bough by a well; whose branches run over the wall:  The archers have sorely grieved him, and shot at him, and hated him: But his bow abode in strength, and the arms of his hands were made strong by the hands of the mighty God of Jacob; (from thence is the shepherd, the stone of Israel:) Even by the God of thy father, who shall help thee; and by the Almighty, who shall bless thee with blessings of heaven above, blessings of the deep that lieth under, blessings of the breasts, and of the womb . . . on the head of Joseph, and on the crown of the head of him that was separate from his brethren.”  Note that Jacob’s blessing of his twelve sons in Genesis 49 is specifically a prophecy of “that which shall befall you in the last days,” verse 1.


This end-time prophecy for Joseph (which I believe is the modern day Anglo-Saxon peoples of Great Britain, United States and Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Anglo South Africa) seems to be strikingly fulfilled in the terrorist acts of September 11, 2001, and following. (Even if you do not believe in the identity of modern Israel in the Anglo-Saxon peoples, you will have to admit that New York City has more Jews than almost any other place in the world!)

America continues to grieve the most devastating tragedy in its history.  The terrorist attack was the most grievous episode in American history.  But who are the archers, and why do they hate Joseph?

Ishmael, son of Abraham and Sarah’s handmaid Hagar, grew up with envious hatred for Isaac, father of Jacob (Israel), the father of Joseph, Genesis 21:9-11.  After Sarah’s jealousy resulted in the expulsion of Hagar and Ishmael, “God was with the lad [Ishmael]; and he grew, and dwelt in the wilderness, and became an archer,” verse 20.  Most students of the Bible know that Ishmael was the father of the Arabs.  What kind of people would Ishmaelites be?  The angel of the Lord announced, “And he [Ishmael, which means ‘God shall hear’] will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren,” Genesis 16:12.  In modern parlance, Ishmael’s descendents would be terrorists, wreaking havoc in the midst of his brethren (the legitimate sons of Abraham).  Why?  Because they have never forgiven Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph for receiving the promised birthright from God.  That hatred continues today, in men like Yassir Arafat, who claims he is an Ishmaelite who eternally hates the Jews (Judah) and the Americans and British (Joseph) who support them.

There is another archer — Esau, the nephew of Ishmael.  Isaac and Rebekah had twin boys, Esau and Jacob (later renamed Israel).  “And the boys grew: and Esau was a cunning hunter, a man of the field; and Jacob was a plain man, dwelling in tents,” Genesis 25:27.  Esau, the firstborn, should have received the birthright blessing.  But he despised his blessing, verses 28-34.  Later, Jacob tricked his aged father Isaac into blessing him instead of Esau.  Notice that Esau was an archer (Genesis 27:1-4).  Thousands of years of hatred began with this historical incident, “And Esau hated Jacob because of the blessing wherewith his father blessed him: and Esau said in his heart, The days of mourning for my father are at hand; then will I slay my brother Jacob,” Genesis 27:41.  One of Esau’s wives was Mahalath (or Bashemath), sister of Nebajoth, the son of Ishmael.  Thus, Esau through marriage was related to Ishmael as well as being his nephew.  Both Ishmael and Esau were archers.  Both hated Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph.  Isaac prophesied of Esau, “And by thy sword shalt thou live, and shalt serve thy brother [Jacob]; and it shall come to pass when thou shalt have the dominion, that thou shall break his yoke from off thy neck,” verse 40.  See also II Kings 8:20, which is a type of the end times.  Esau rejoiced at the destruction of Jerusalem, Psalm 137:7.

In the centuries that followed, the Ishmael/Esau confederation were archers who lived by the sword, which with the crescent moon became the symbols of Islam.  Actually, the word for “archers” in Genesis 49:23 is Strong’s #1167, ba’al, alluding to Nimrod, the mighty hunter with the bow (cf. the constellation of Ori­on).  The archers who attack and grieve Jo­seph in the last days are at heart Baal wor­shippers.  It is interest­ing to note that in 1998, Palestinian Authority leader Yassir Arafat had a postage stamp printed with Baal on it!

Psalm 83 tells of a confedera­tion of ter­ror­ists against God’s people.  “For, lo, thine enemies make a tu­mult: and they that hate thee have lifted up the head.  They have taken crafty counsel against thy people, and consulted against thy hidden ones.  They have said, Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance. For they have consulted together with one consent: they are confederate [worldwide terrorist network] against thee: The taber­nacles of Edom [Esau], and the Ishmaelites; of Moab . . . Ammon, and Amalek; the Philistines . . .  children of Lot,” verses 2-8.

In type, Job experienced a grievous affliction similar to that prophesied for  Joseph in Genesis 49.  In Job 16:11-14, we read Job’s lament, “God hath delivered me to the ungodly, and turned me over into the hands of the wicked.  I was at ease, but he hath broken me asunder: he hath also taken me by my neck, and shaken me to pieces, and set me up for his mark [target].   His archers compass me round about [multiple terrorist attacks], he cleaveth my reins asunder, and doth not spare; he poureth out my gall upon the ground.  He breaketh me with breach upon breach [breach of security?], he runneth upon me like a giant [even though small in number, a few terrorists can wreak enormous damage].”

Ishmael had twelve sons, Nebajoth, Kedar, Adbeel, Mibsam, Mishma, Dumah, Massa, Hadar, Tema, Jetur, Naphish, and Kedemah, Genesis 25:13-15.  It may be a coincidence that Ishmael, prophetic rival of Israel, had the same number of sons that Jacob (Israel) did; also, both had one daughter.

A trait of Ishmael, even today, is to wear lots of gold (see Judges 8:24).  In Isaiah 21 prophesies of Dumah, verses 11-12, and Tema and Kedar in Arabia in verses 13-17.  “Watchman,” Isaiah asks, “what of the night? [How far is it spent? How long till morning?],” verse 11, Amplified Bible.  Within a year, the glory of Kedar shall fail, verse 16.  “And the residue of the number of archers, the mighty men of the children of Kedar, shall be diminished: for the Lord God of Israel hath spoken it,” verse 17.



Abraham and His Descendants

(note: women are in italics)

Hagar:  Ishmael

Sarah:  Isaac



Jokshan [Sheba, Dedan (Assshurim, Letushim, Leummim)],


Midian (Ephah, Epher, Hanoch, Abida, Eldaah),

Ishbak, and Shuah.

Nebajoth, Kedar, Adbeel, Mibsam, Mishma, Dumah, Massa, Hadar, Tema, Jetur, Naphish, and Kedemah. Bashemath

Esau (Edom)

Adah:  Eliphaz

Aholibamah:  Jeush, Jaalam, Korah

Bashemath: Reuel

Jacob (Israel)

Leah: Reuben, Sim­eon, Levi, Judah, then Issachar, Zebulon.


Bilhah: Dan,Naphtali.

Zilpah: Gad, Asher.

Rachel: Joseph, Ben­jamin.


The stressful times in which we live under the attack of the archers should spur us to cry out to the Almighty for help:  “In my distress I cried unto the Lord, and He heard me. . . . Woe is me, that I sojourn in Mesech [or Meshech, son of Japheth, possibly one of the two branches of the Russians, see Genesis 10:2], that I dwell in the [black goatskin, Song of Solomon 1:5] tents of Kedar!  My soul hath long dwelt with him that hateth peace [the ‘peace process’ never succeeds].  I am for peace: but when I speak, they are for war,” Psalm 120:1-7.

Islam is not a peace-loving religion.  It calls for war against infidels until the whole world is dominated by Muslims.  By enlisting the support of Muslims to fight “terrorism,” and encouraging Americans to pray in their “church, synagogue, or mosque,” our leaders have already lost the war on terrorism.

This E-mail from France illustrates prob­lems in a country with Muslim influence.

“My life is very difficult because, like other civil servants, I must obey an atheistic and free Masonic government.  Nobody knows what it is to labor and suffer under a government who takes away all [our] liberties, and in the same time pretends to guarantee the freedom of conscience. In the town where I live, Lyon, the Christians are hated but the Muslims are sustained by the town because the mayor is a free mason-socialist-communist member.

“It is awful to see the United States aiding and supporting such a state. I’m a believer in Christ, but it seems to me that our brothers of the most powerful country are despising and forsaking their brethren.  What are you to gain with our death?

“. . . I can say to you that the United States is fooled in believing that France is with them.  Here there are a lot of young Muslims totally devoted to Bin Laden.  And since they have the power to vote, the French politicians agree with them.  But you, Christians of the United States, are rich and powerful, you don’t pay attention to the death of your brothers.  Your hearts are stubborn.

 “Please help us!”  — from an E-mail message, Lyon, France.

After thousands of years of hatred, strife, and terrorism, Ishmael will finally come to the light of the Lord.  “Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee . . . . And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising . . . . All the flocks of Kedar shall be gathered together unto thee, the rams of Nebaioth shall minister unto thee: they shall come up with acceptance on mine altar, and I will glorify the house of My glory. . . .  For the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee shall perish . . . .  The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee; and all they that despised thee shall bow themselves down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee, The city of our Lord, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel,” Isaiah 60:1, 3, 7, 12, 14.

May Ishmael and Esau, these archers who have sorely grieved Joseph, turn to the Almighty!

              — written by Richard C. Nickels W



Daniel and Revelation


Bible prophecy is coming alive in the world events we see happening now.  Andrew N. Dugger, Church of God (Seventh Day) leader from the 1920s to 1975, wrote a very interesting commentary, “Daniel and Revelation.”  This 53-page reprint is available for a suggested donation of $5 postpaid from Giving & Sharing, PO Box 100, Neck City, MO 64849.