A Prophecy Fulfilled
by Christine Egbert
Four years ago, I was blessed to meet the husband-and-wife founders of Firekeepers International, Chief Joseph RiverWind—a descendant of the Arawak Taino Tribe—and his beautiful and brilliant wife, Dr. Laralyn—of the Cherokee and Muskogee Creek. During Israel’s Jerusalem Day celebration in 2018, they were appointed “Ambassadors of God” by the Israeli Knesset. The amazing content in this article comes from Chief Joseph RiverWind’s book, That’s What the Old Ones Say.
In ancient times, the Old Ones were given a prophecy that changed their world forever. It foretold of a time when three great war canoes would arrive on their shores bringing “talking leaves” that spoke of the Creator. But the prophecy also warned them that these men, who were covered like turtles (with armor), would bring destruction, to their people and their way of life.
War Canoes & Talking Leaves
This ancient prophecy given to the Taino people came to pass when three great ships, the La Nina, the La Pinta, and the La Santa Maria (war canoes), were sighted off the coast of Kiskeya (Hispaniola, in the Dominican Republic). Conquistadors introduced the Taino people to their Creator’s Word—the Bible—at the point of a Spanish sword.
Scripture’s talking leaves (pages made from trees) spoke of the Creator, and His Taino people listened. But the godless actions of the Conquistadors failed to emulate the Most High’s command for justice and mercy. Instead of walking humbly with God, these Conquistadors lusted for gold, bringing the destruction foretold in the Old One’s prophecy.
Returning To Yah
Knowledge of the horrific cruelty committed for over 500 years, by those claiming to be Christians, caused Chief Joseph to renounce Christianity—even the faith preached by his own Christian father, who was a pastor. When Joseph turned instead to the ancient teachings of his native people, he discovered an amazing truth. Many of the accounts recorded in the Christian Bible were stories told and retold by the Old Ones for generations.
Then One Night…
The night Chief Joseph fell on his face in heartbroken repentance, he finally understood God’s message of salvation. He had answered many altar calls before his renouncing Christianity, but on this night, he was changed. He realized that his decisions held consequences and that he could no longer blame the Creator.
From the Old Ones, he had learned that the Creator gives everyone a special song and that no one really knows who they really are and what they were created to do until they discover their (special) song.
That night, as God’s presence permeated the atmosphere, Chief Joseph heard the Creator tell him to make music that points people to Him. Then the Creator opened his ears to a heavenly symphony. As its crescendo filled the room with praise to God, Chief Joseph’s tears of brokenness turned into tears of exhilaration.
Forgiveness, The Greatest Challenge
In his book, Chief Joseph quotes Romans 1:20, which says, “The unseen things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things made—both His eternal power and Godhead—so they are without excuse.”
Chief Joseph writes, “Our people knew who the heavenly Father was. Yet Trickster (Satan) knew how to make us turn away from the Gospel message that was brought to our shores. The doctrine of conquest left the indigenous people of this land with a poisonous 500-year-old root of bitterness…”
The Chief’s greatest spiritual challenge, he said, was to forgive. He had to forgive the Spanish Conquistadors, the Christian missionaries, and even America for stealing tribal lands through their doctrine of “Manifest Destiny”. If he failed to forgive, he knew he would be a hypocrite. So, Chief Joseph forgave.
Music and Spiritual Battle
Chief Joseph was raised by talented musicians, who instilled in him a love for music. Music had filled his home and permeated their gatherings. This love prepared Joseph for the divine calling the Creator would entrust him with. The night Chief Joseph asked the Most High to instill in him a hunger for the Creator’s Word, he became ravenous, not only to read but to dig deeply into the Hebrew and Greek. Studying Scripture, he learned that Israel’s worriers entered into battle playing instruments. With songs of praise and blasts from ram’s horns, they won victories. Music was part of God’s battle plan. So, Army veteran Chief Joseph RiverWind traded his riffle for a drum, his sidearm for bagpipes, and his knife for a flute. These were Scripture’s instruments used for warfare.
Drum Or Tambourine
The Hebrew word transliterated as “toph”, though often translated in English as tambourine or timbrel, literally means “a hide stretched across a wooden frame and struck with the hand or a stick.” That, my friends, is a drum! Yet playing drums to worship their Creator had been forbidden by the well-meaning Christian missionaries sent to teach the Native People.
Origin Of The Sun (Son) Dance
The Lakota lived in the east, long before they were pushed west to hunt buffalo on the planes. The story of the Son Dance, as told and retold by the Old Ones, occurred during the time when the Lakota still lived in the east. A time of great sickness fell on the people. Many were dying. Their medicine men and women had tried everything to no avail. So, the old Chief, as was his custom, went up to the sacred mountain to fast and pray.
With his arms stretched toward heaven, he cried, “Creator, Maker of all things, Giver of breath, I come humbly before You on this vision quest. Your people need help. They are dying. I do not know what to do.” He explained that they had tried everything. Nothing had worked. Then he asked if there was a plant, a tea, a salve they could make to heal the people. He got no answer.
On the second day, after singing, praying, and dancing all day, the old Chief again raised his arms toward heaven. “Wakan Taka, oh Great One, You alone know all things. You spread the stars across the sky. Your people are dying. I do not know what to do.” This time the old Chief asked if there was a song the Creator could give him to sing over the people and make them live. But again, there was no answer.
On the third day, as hunger gnawed at his empty stomach and a fiery thirst burned in his mouth, the old Chief once again raised his hands toward heaven. “Tunkasila, Grandfather, You who are without beginning or end, who formed man from the earth of the planes, Your children need help. They are dying!” This time the Chief asked if there was a dance the Creator could teach him so that he could pray and war in the spirit realm. But again, no answer came.
Then on the fourth day, as the sun headed west toward its setting, the Chief again raised his hands toward heaven. His hunger and thirst had abated, fed through prayer and song. “Great Mystery, You who made the moon and the stars and placed them in the sky, you gave us life and sustained us throughout our generations. Please, Creator, Your children are dying. I don’t know what to do, other than pray and seek an answer. How can my people be saved, oh Great One in the sky?”
This time, the Great One sent a Spirit Being. The old Chief dropped to his knees, as the Spirit Being moved his arm and drew a large opening in the sky with his finger.
“Look through this window,” the Spirit Being instructed the old Chief, “and you will see the answer to your prayers.”
So, the Chief looked into the window drawn in the heavens and beheld a man. He was pierced and hanging on a tree.
“He is dying so your people may live,” the Spirit Being told him.
As the last rays of the sun sunk into the western horizon, the window in the sky began to close.
“Wait!” the old Chief cried. “What is His name, that we may remember Him and His sacrifice? For there is no greater honor among our people than to give one’s life for another.”
“His name is Bright Morning Star,” the Spirit replied. “Remember His Name!” Then the Spirit was gone. Assured that his people would live, the old Chief fell to his knees weeping.
This was the origin of the Sun (Son) Dance.
Israel’s Lost Tribe’s & The Cherokee
Hebrew writing, dating back 2000 years in some cases, has been discovered carved on cave walls and etched into stone throughout the Americas. But we have even more credible evidence that the Cherokee are descended from Israel’s scattered tribes.
James Adair, a Hebrew scholar who lived among the Cherokee people for 40 years in the early 18th century, recorded many of the amazing similarities found in Cherokee culture and the Hebrews of Scripture.
The Cherokee name for the Creator is YoHeWaH.
YoHeWaH is one triune being called El-o-HeyM.
The Cherokee account of creation took 7 days, in which God formed a man from red clay, then formed a woman from the man’s rib.
The Cherokee teach that the Creator YoHeWaH caused a great flood, after which He promised never to flood the earth again. The flood wiped out all the giants, and only one family survived, the family of a man named Noo-uh, whom the Creator instructed to build a large Canoe. Onto it, the Creator led two of each animal.
The Cherokee, according to their most ancient laws, were forbidden to keep idols.
The Cherokee were commanded to work 6 days and to rest on the 7th.
The Cherokee consider pork unclean.
Ceremonial Cherokee songs often start with, “Hallel, Hallelu-yah!”
The Cherokee forbid divination. Witchcraft and bad medicine were punishable by death.
When the Cherokee went to war, they carried a sacred arc into battle.
Both the Cherokee and the Hebrews sacrificed fat offerings—for trespass, sin, and peace offerings.
Both Cherokee and Hebrew priests wore white robes, with 72 bells, a sleeveless jacket, and a breastplate set with 12 stones.
Linguistic Structure In Hebrew & Cherokee
The Cherokee word for wife is “havah” or “avah”. “Chavvah” a similar-sounding Hebrew word that means “giver of life” has been translated into English as Eve, the very first wife ever mentioned in the Bible.
The Cherokee word for earth is “yahkane”. It means Yah’s footstool.
In both the Hebrew and Cherokee cultures, every new day begins at sunset, and each new month begins with the first sighting of the new moon. A new year begins and is celebrated with a gathering at the first sighting of a new moon during the Spring equinox.
Biblical Feast Days & The Cherokee
The Cherokees celebrate a yearly Feast Day similar to the Hebrew Passover. Songs sung during this celebration include the phrase “YoHeWaHsho Mashi-yo,” which means “the anointed ruler.” Likewise, the Cherokees celebrate Feasts that correspond, both in timing and other aspects, with Torah’s mandated Feast Days of First Fruits, Shavuot, Yom Kippur, and Sukkot.
These are only some of the similarities enumerated in the writings of James Adair that strongly indicate a connection between the Cherokee people and ancient Israel. Explorers and botanists, men like William Bartram, James Mooney, John Payne, and Daniel Butrick (who lived among the Cherokee for decades) have also attested to these amazing similarities.
At some time in the ancient past, Cherokee people were either greatly influenced by Hebrews or were actual descendants of Israel’s scattered tribes.
There are other Tribes living in the Southeast (the Chickasaw, Choctaw, Haleiwa-Saponi, and the Muskogee Creek) whose traditions and culture, though not as well documented, suggest a Hebraic influence.
Their Old Ones had prophesied that a message to return to the old ways would be brought to them. And it was! Unfortunately, the Christian missionaries who fulfilled this prophecy, mixed Scripture’s truths with many manmade Church traditions. They commanded the Cherokee and other First Nations tribes to give up their worship of the Creator through their ancient (Hebraic) Feast Days and new moons, as well as through praising their Creator with dance and the beating of drums. These things, although they were commanded throughout Scripture, were demonic according to the missionaries. But in Psalms 150:4, King David declared, “Praise God with the drum and dance.” (CEB)
Those who worship the God of Scripture need to stop putting the Creator in a theological lockbox! He does not fit. Many Orthodox Jews have discovered their Messiah, Jesus (Yeshua), not from reading the New Testament or being witnessed to by Christians. Many have found Him in the Hebrew Torah itself… and others from Hebrew gematria. The late Rabbi Simcha Pearlmutter came to faith in Israel’s Messiah by reading prayers that were published in Israel’s Orthodox Prayer Book. Alone in his office, he cried out to Jesus (Yeshua). “Lord, I can’t fight you anymore. Either I must throw out the entire Orthodox Jewish faith that I was born into, or I must accept You as given to me by our ancient rabbis and confirmed by our Holy Scriptures.” That is an amazing utterance when you think of how many Christians have been taught that Jesus (Yeshua) came to start a new religion called Christianity.
Orthodox Rabbi Simcha Pearlmutter and Chief Joseph RiverWind both learned the truth, but not in an expected way.
Many Christians, including Chief Joseph’s own father, had witnessed to him. But because of the horrific cruelty that had been committed for over 500 years by those claiming to be Christians, their witness lacked validity. The same can be said for Orthodox Rabbi Pearlmutter, who found Jesus (Yeshua) in his ancient Jewish prayer book.
Neither of them came to the faith in Jesus (Yeshua) by reading the gospel of John or repeating the sinner’s prayer. That is because God cannot, and will not, be put into a theological (or denominational) lockbox. He is too big! He will not fit! Jesus (Yeshua) told Rabbi Pearlmutter, “I have made you clean before My Father in heaven. Now please make Me clean before My people. Cleanse My name before My people.” He instructed Chief Joseph RiverWind to, “Make music and point people to Me!”
The atrocities perpetrated on Chief RiverWind’s people caused him to reject his father’s brand of Christianity, and to turn back to the ancient ways of his native people in stories retold for generations by the Old Ones.
These incredible stories revealed the Creator’s name, YoHeWah. They told of a Spirit Being who responded to an old chief’s prayer and fasting for his people, who were dying. On a mountain, this Spirit Being created a window in time through which the old chief beheld a man, pierced and hanging on a tree. “He died,” the Spirit told him, “so that your people might live.” When the old chief asked who this man was, the Spirit told him, “He is YoHeWah’s Son, Bright Morning Star.”