When MAGA pastor Shane Vaughn preached a guest sermon at University Parkway Church in Aiken, South Carolina, last month, he made an odd statement that “every signer of our Declaration of Independence—every one of them—were descendants of the tribes of Israel,” which he claimed meant that “America was a church before she was a nation.”
Right-wing pastor Shane Vaughn claims that “every signer of our Declaration of Independence—every one of them—were descendants of the tribes of Israel,” which is why “America was a church before she was a nation.” pic.twitter.com/QXJdsP9Put
— Right Wing Watch (@RightWingWatch) November 1, 2021
We had no idea what Vaughn meant by that at the time, but during a recent appearance on the “Club 36” Christian television program, Vaughn provided more details, none of which bolster the legitimacy of his claim in any way as his entire argument is riddled with biblical and historical mistakes.
Vaughn kicked things off by claiming that George Washington dedicated the United States to God at St. Paul’s Chapel in New York City following his first inauguration.
“That picture of him praying by the horse, that’s where it happened,” Vaughn declared, seemingly in reference to the famous painting portraying Washington kneeling in prayer beside a white horse. The only problem for Vaughn, aside from the fact that the scene depicted most likely never actually happened, is that it portrays Washington at Valley Forge in Pennsylvania during the Revolutionary War, not in New York City during his inauguration.
Things only went downhill from there.
Every signer of the Declaration of Independence were descendants of the tribes of Israel. We can trace it. We know it. And here’s the thing you got to understand about Israel. Most people think when you say the word Israel, they think of Jews. … The first mention of the word ‘Jew’ in the Bible is them fighting against Israel. When you come to understand that Israel is not Jews and Jews is not Israel, when you get that, here’s what happens: At one time, they were one nation. King Solomon died—King Jeroboam, King Rehoboam, there was a split. The Jews—the tribe of Judah—stayed in Jerusalem. They kept the Sabbath. That’s why they’re still identifiable. They get the Sabbath, that kept them identifiable for these thousands of years. However, there was 10 tribes that went to the north with King Rehoboam in rebellion. Those tribes crossed over the Caucasian mountains. They were captivated by the Germans. … Where they wound up at was the great British Isles because the prophecy was that they would go to the isles of the sea. And from there, we find those tribes making their way to the United States of America.
First of all, following the death of Solomon at the end of the 1 Kings, it was his son Rehoboam who was anointed as king. When a council of Israelites requested reforms to some of Solomon’s policies, Rehoboam rejected the request and vowed to impose even harsher policies. This development gave rise to a rebellion led by Jeroboam in which 10 tribes—Zebulun, Issachar, Asher, Naphtali, Dan, Manasseh, Ephraim, Reuben, Simeon, and Gad—broke off and formed the Kingdom of Israel while the tribes of Benjamin and Judah remained loyal to Rehoboam in the Kingdom of Judah.
The 10 tribes that formed the Kingdom of Israel under Jeroboam, not Rehoboam as Vaughn claimed, are now known as the Ten Lost Tribes, meaning that, as the name suggests, they have been lost to history and nobody knows what happened to them. As such, it seems like it would be a little difficult to trace the ancestry of all 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence back to tribes in Israel that disappeared thousands of years ago.