Now placing this ancient River on the Map, makes for an interesting although very necessary rewriting of history. Now in ancient times this was the river that helped define the lands of Monomapata on African maps or Mesopotamia on historical maps and scene - the lands in between the Rivers Euphrates and Tigris. Which according to Scripture was and is Abrahams birthplace, at Ur. In this area we do find our suggestion of Tigre (also called Nzere) River, which was said to flow east of Assyria (Ashur), again not far from Babylonia. Lets dive !
This River is the third one, springing out from Paradise (Genesis 2,10-14):
10 A river flows out of Eden to water the garden, and from there it divides and becomes four branches. 11 The name of the first is Pishon; it is the one that flows around the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold; 12 and the gold of that land is good; bdellium and onyx stone are there. 13 The name of the second river is Gihon; it is the one that flows around the whole land of Cush. 14 The name of the third river is Tigris, which flows east of Assyria (Ashur). And the fourth river is the Euphrates.
Now as for proof of this River in our Scriptures, we have to include the ONLY verse that we could find, other than Genesis. And its a mention in Daniel 10,6:
2 At that time I, Daniel, had been mourning for three weeks. 3 I had eaten no rich food, no meat or wine had entered my mouth, and I had not anointed myself at all, for the full three weeks. 4 On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I was standing on the bank of the great river (that is, the Tigris), 5 I looked up and saw a man clothed in linen, with a belt of gold from Uphaz around his waist. 6 His body was like beryl, his face like lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and the sound of his words like the roar of a multitude.
Now most other references in the Bible are for Euphrates (Zambezi), HOWEVER there are many mentions of The Great River or The River. We supposed these two rivers, being so close and defining a big portion of the land in between the rivers (Monomapata) Mesopotamia are used somewhat interchangeable in our Scriptures. We do find another mention of Euphrates being noted as a place where four angels are bound in Revelation 9,13-14:
13 Then the sixth angel blew his trumpet, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar before SoNiNi, 14 saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, “Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates.”
And furthermore in Revelation 16,12:
12 The sixth angel poured his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up in order to prepare the way for the kings from the east.
The last one is really interesting. Because has the water of the Euphrates, been dried up towards the East (of Jerusalem), being the place where the Zambezi might have used to pour in or out of The Great African lakes? We will talk more about this in the next post on Zambezi being the Euphrates.
Back on track there is one serious clue as to where Tigris was located, and that is the mention of the River being East of Assyria. Now lets say Assyria was not far from Midian (modern day Namibia or parts of it). We end up with something like Assyria being in parts of todays Zaire and Angola, and guess which river flows through Zaire, you guessed it, The Congo River or Zaire River (Also called Nzere River). This river is the second largest River in Africa, shorter only than the Nile. It is the deepest flowing River with a massive basin in the Congo. The ancient Greeks called it Tigres (Τίγρης) adapted from ancient Sumerian Idigna - running water or swift river. Play with the words, Zaire (Nzere) and Syre (Assyria)? Remember this River was the one who flowed East of Assyria. Now Zambezi is also a good candidate, perhaps even better, but more on that later.
Now please read the screenshot fra a site online, and this is the consensus today, that this River (one of the 4 Great Rivers) is now extinct. One of the Rivers mentioned in our beloved Scriptures as a foundation block on the earth has dried up, because we say so. Who are the we in this case, well it is they or the people on the other side. And always remember they also are us, if you understand what we are talking about. Therefore, do not judge the modern day historians but certainly, if given the opportunity, proof them wrong. Make `em think.
Now, and moving on in the mappings, we see that in Sumerian myths and folklore (that being in large part Ugandan and Congolese) we see that Tigris was created by Enki. Interestingly in Hittite (Hottentot) mythology and Hurrian (Herrero) myths we find the name Aranzah for the River Tigris who was a deity in their eyes (Kumarbi cycle).
Now the name Congo comes from the Kingdom of Congo (Esikongo), that was once located on the southern side of the River. The Bakongo could be related to the markings on Ortelius Map from 1564, where we see Manicongo a city on the mouth of the Kongo River. Now the name Zaire, comes from the Kikongo word Nzere (River) and its common tongue name - Nzadi o Nzere - The River that swallows Rivers. The name Congo slowly took over from Zaire and was cemented in 1960 when The Republic of Congo itself finally became independent from the Belgian Congo, and the atrocities of that regime.
Now The Congo River (Nzere) and its tributaries flows through a incredible rainforest (second largest in the world) and does pretty much everything the Amazon River does, but in second place. The source or sources of the Congo River, some from the highlands and great mountains of the East African Rift, but also from the Great African Lakes (Tanganyika and Mweru), these feed the tributary Lualaba River (becomes Congo below Boyoma Falls). It is believed that the Chambeshi (in Zambia) as being the source of the Congo, this may be. But was it always like that?
Now the Congo flows northwest from Kisangani (below Boyoma Falls), then turns southwest (passed Mbandaka and joining Ubangi River). The Congo can be divided into Lower and upper parts of this Great River, the lower parts being the part where the River Mouths in Kinshasa and Brazzaville. There are two very big tributaries in Kwilu and Inkisi.
Most of the River is navigable, between Kinshasa and Kisangani in particular and steamboats used to frequent the banks until they stopped not long ago. This River is now and was then more like a road for travel and trade. Going past three major rapids, we can find merchant ships carrying coveted loads of copper, palm kernel, sugar, coffee and cotton.
Now if we look closer at the wildlife in the middle of the Congo Rivers flows, we find a richness not found ANYWHERE else in the world. Could this be where the Angel is said to be standing and guarding the entrance to Paradise with a flaming sword (Genesis 3,24):
24 "He drove out the man; and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim, and a sword flaming and turning to guard the way to the tree of life."
Could this area in the Congo (which would be very much East of Jerusalem down in the South), which off course still is as green as ever and a lushness you wont find anywhere else (spiders the size of your hands, snakes like minivans with huge snails and scary frogs). With a biodiversity that botanist and speciologists struggle to charter even today. Could this area in Central Africa (at its source shared by many African countries) be the place where the Original Garden of Eden had its springs? 4 Rivers of Paradise? The Congo has more species of fish than any other (some say over 500 different species), like Carps, Elephant fishes, African tetras, catfishes and giant tigerfish.
Now Bantus populate the entire Congo Basin, and anthropologist have chartered movements of Bantus as coming from the Congo area. We have a different theory of these movements, and the are highly Scriptural and historical. more on those later. The Bantus here have several hundred different ethnic groups (Abatwa and Pygmies), and only later came the Kingdom of Congo (Mpemba Kasi and Mbata), before they would have been known as Assyrians, Babylonians and Egyptians.
Now when Europeans started coming, as early as in the 14hundreds and Portuguese explorers like Diogo Cão (1452-1486), they started building their images (Padrão) the familiar stone pillars with crosses on them. But the River was to remain relatively unchartered until the 17hundreds when Francisco de Lacerda (1753-1798) went up the Zambezi and reached the upper part of the Congo Basin. Now the Arab slave trade had contaminated the Congo River by the 19hundreds, with Nyangwe as the farthest trade outpost. Missionary and traveler David Livingstone (1813-1873) may have been the first man that got to see Nyangwe, as he wanted to prove that the Nile was connected and went further into West Africa perhaps even the Niger River (as we also have purported). However because of what Livingstone saw there at Nyangwe, over 400 Africans killed by Arabs, he cut his trip short, stopped his research on the Nile (among other things) and went back to Tanganyika.
Now in this same thread of thought, we have Henry Morton Stanley (1841-1904), who did the "rest" of the chartering of the upper Congo in an expedition in 1876-77. Now Stanley was looking to confirm Livingstone theory of the Lualabala was the feed River of the Nile and the Niger River.
Now Stanley also came to Nyangwe and hired a force of men from Tippu Tip, Hamad ibn Muhammad ibn Saʿīd al Murjabī (1835-1905), that protected his travel for about 90 days. They went through the thick forest of Matimba, but Tippu Tip turned back with his men leaving Stanley and his 143 people to the fate of the Congo. This must have been a trying time for Stanley, and if you read his books, he sure had encounters with some tribes that had the taste for human blood (cannibals). The dreaded man eaters of the Congo. Now some of Stanleys bad experiences may have been because of the local tribes association with white skinned men as being slave traders. That certainly did not help him along the way. After a while Stanley reached Boyoma Falls (and Ikuta YaCongo) and subsequently went away from Livingstones theory that it was all connected there, the Lualaba. In his books it says that around these parts, the cannibal tribes were less, but on account of Portuguese colonists, most of the tribes now had plenty of firearms. Not far from Kinshasa and Brazzaville, there are MANY rapids and falls, which took Stanley 5 months and cost many lives as they descended down the falls. At the end of Stanleys expedition, he lost 132 people.
Kinshasa was at the start a trading post, founded by Stanley in 1881 and named after Leopold II of Belgium, Leopoldville. Leopold did claim the Congo (Zaire) as his Free State in 1885, and he began to decimate the local people with so many atrocities they are to many to mention here as a side note. Perhaps we will do a future disclosure of the many things that was done under Leopolds command, but alas that post is not for the faint of heart. The Belgian Congo was such a sad chapter, but in colonial history just one of many others.
Now Diglat (Tigris) is the earlier form of the name, the swift flowing Diklah, The Babylonian Talmud says it was known to be sharp and quick. If we read more extra Biblical sources (Pesachim 59a), we see mentions that the River of Tigris and its water is regarded as healthy for body and mind. WE find also more in Yevamot 121a, that the River is mention in the Creation story, and it reads that when seeing it you will receive a blessing.
Now the Tigris formed the Boundaries with Babylonia, as we can read from the Talmudic verses (Kiddushin 71b). And on that note and historical value of the remark, we will take the opportunity to go further into the Relationship of Tigris (and Euphrates) and Babylon. Remember Hanging Gardens? Well, must have been green right? And must have had lots of water. Could these hanging gardens be put elsewhere (say Ethiopia and Sudan), well off course and they were probably a part of the ancient landscape. Now the ancient City, called Babylon, had a history with its rivers and nearby waterways.
Now Mesopotamia was the civilisation back in the day, located between the areas of Euphrates and Tigris, the land between the rivers. Now the ancient and main city of Babylon was in the southern parts of Mesopotamia (Monomapata), where there was marsh and the rivers Tigris (Congo) and Euphrates (Zambezi) would meet. Now in this centre of Africa, we would have found the city of Babylon, not far from the Euphrates and what would be ancient Mesopotamia (lands in between the Rivers).
Now remember to put the map on its side, then you see tat these two rivers really are on each side of the area of Mesopotamia. Now ancient Babylon was one of the most important urban areas in ancient Africa, until the Greeks kinda took over (Neo Babylonia and all). We are talking about the old Babylon, where we find King Hammurabi (the Amorite King, that built the city of Babylon. Now in that time the southern parts of Mesopotamia became Babylonia, and the city of Nippur was usurped. After Hammurabi came his boy Samsu-iluna ad then Babylon came under Assyrian and Elamite rule. Now somewhere in those parts of Mesopotamia (Central Africa), would have been on of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, The Hanging Gardens of Babylon.
Now for a recap of Babylon as a city, it plays a BIG role in the Bible, as a place where they truly rejected the notion of a One True God. This was one of the cities founded by Nimrod (hunter of men) as we read in Genesis 10,8-10:
8 Cush became the father of Nimrod; he was the first on earth to become a mighty warrior. 9 He was a mighty hunter before SoNiNi; therefore it is said, “Like Nimrod a mighty hunter before SoNiNi.” 10 The beginning of his kingdom was Babel, Erech, and Accad, all of them in the land of Shinar.
11 From that land he went into Assyria, and built Nineveh, Rehoboth-ir, Calah, and 12 Resen between Nineveh and Calah; that is the great city. 13 Egypt became the father of Ludim, Anamim, Lehabim, Naphtuhim, 14 Pathrusim, Casluhim, and Caphtorim, from which the Philistines come.
So we see Nimrod even built Nineveh, which most have been within close proximity to the other cities mentioned here. Now Babel was located on the plains of Shinar (in Mesopotamia on the east bank of the Euphrates). Now it seems Babel as a city didn't really grown until King Hammurabi chose it as a capital, expanding the ever growing Babylonia. Now Babel must have had a series of channels (natural and man made) built around the Euphrates. We will talk more about that, at great length, in the coming post on the Euphrates.
So this River Tigris, was said to be East of Assyria, then it could be placed here right? Now Assyria was one of those ancient nations, and even a world power at some point, and their land extended from Babylonia in the North and down to the Euphrates in the South. They had their trouble with Yacobs people for sure, and SoNiNi used the Assyrians to go against His People was not listening or misbehaving. And here we do find one of the cities that Nimrod built, Ninenveh, being mentioned again and again in our Scriptures. We even see that the Assyrian was, at some point, even given the northern kingdom of The Promised Land. In our Scriptures we find that King Pul and Shalmaneser 5th invaded the Land, and captured Samaria and sent loads of People of Israel to Assyria. They settled in West African countries, our Scriptures say Hala, Gozan and the towns of the Medes (2. Kings 17,6).
The Prophet Hosea had this to say (Hosea 11,5-7):
"5 They shall return to the land of Egypt, and Assyria shall be their king, because they have refused to return to me. 6 The sword rages in their cities, it consumes their oracle-priests, and devours because of their schemes. 7 My people are bent on turning away from me. To the Most High they call, but he does not raise them up at all."
If we read Isaiah 10,6 and Kings 18,12, we see that SoNiNi did all this because they failed to obey Him and worship only him. Later on the Assyrians went on and settled in Samaria (hence the terms Samaritans) after the Northern Kingdom fell. Furthermore in Ezra 4,2 we see that these men who lived in Samaria claimed to worship SoNiNi, but had dual worships going. Like most churches today, hence why things are like they are in the Christian sphere today.
Now the descendants of the Assyrians, who intermingled, frustrated the People of Yacob (Ezra 4,1-5) and when they were construction the Temple. From these later on came the Samaritans, a people in its own. Now after the siege of Samaria, the southern Kingdom of Juda was threaten, when King Hezekia was reigning, King Sennacherib made his attack on mostly the Eastern Cape. 46 cities of Judas fortified cities was captured (Isaiah 36,1). Not long after, they took Jerusalem. Now here King Sennacherib started boasting and said not even SoNiNi could stop him from taking Jerusalem (2 Kings 18,13 ; 19,22 ; 35,2 & 2 Chronicles 32,14-16). In a desperate attempt Hezekia tried to buy of Assyria, sending them gold and silver as a "peace offering" hoping to quell the Assyrian King (2 Kings 18,13-16). It was through Isaiah that SoNiNi sent word to King Hezekia that the Assyrians would not set even one foot inside the city (Isaiah 37,33) and it said that SoNiNi HIMSELF would fight against them. As we can read in the whole section of wonderful Scripture (Isaiah 37,23):
21 Then Isaiah son of Amoz sent to Hezekiah, saying: “Thus says SoNiNi naNiNi, the God of Israel: Because you have prayed to me concerning King Sennacherib of Assyria, 22 this is the word that SoNiNi has spoken concerning him:
She despises you, she scorns you— virgin daughter Zion; she tosses her head—behind your back, daughter Jerusalem.
23 “Whom have you mocked and reviled? Against whom have you raised your voice and haughtily lifted your eyes? Against the Holy One of Israel! 24 By your servants you have mocked SoNiNi, and you have said, ‘With my many chariots I have gone up the heights of the mountains, to the far recesses of Lebanon; I felled its tallest cedars, its choicest cypresses; I came to its remotest height, its densest forest. 25 I dug wells and drank waters, I dried up with the sole of my foot all the streams of Egypt.’
26 “Have you not heard that I determined it long ago? I planned from days of old what now I bring to pass, that you should make fortified cities crash into heaps of ruins, 27 while their inhabitants, shorn of strength, are dismayed and confounded; they have become like plants of the field and like tender grass, like grass on the housetops, blighted before it is grown.
28 “I know your rising up and your sitting down, your going out and coming in, and your raging against me. 29 Because you have raged against me and your arrogance has come to my ears, I will put my hook in your nose and my bit in your mouth; I will turn you back on the way by which you came.
30 “And this shall be the sign for you: This year eat what grows of itself, and in the second year what springs from that; then in the third year sow, reap, plant vineyards, and eat their fruit. 31 The surviving remnant of the house of Juda shall again take root downward, and bear fruit upward; 32 for from Jerusalem a remnant shall go out, and from Mount Zion a band of survivors. The zeal of SoNini naNiNi will do this.
33 “Therefore thus says SoNiNi concerning the king of Assyria: He shall not come into this city, shoot an arrow there, come before it with a shield, or cast up a siege ramp against it. 34 By the way that he came, by the same he shall return; he shall not come into this city, says SoNiNi. 35 For I will defend this city to save it, for my own sake and for the sake of my servant David.”
Serious words. As an immovable mountain SoNiNi steps up for His people. It goes on to read that SoNiNi killed 185,000 Assyrian soldiers while they were in their sleep. This made the arrogant King Sennacherib leave his conquest of Juda and the Assyrians were not able to capture Jerusalem (2 Chronicles 32,22). We also see a mention that SoNiNi is the one (Who else?) that dries up areas when they misbehave. And se find the Streams of Egypt in this quote as having been dried up with the sole of His foot.
Moving on we find Jona the prophet, who made a trip to Ninenveh in Assyria, and in this trip (from The Promised Land in southern Africa), up the West Central African coast, we see a good example of how SoNiNis mercy works. We see that SoNiNi TOLD Jona to travel to Nineveh to warn the Assyrians of the judgement that was coming their way. Now Jona knew the Assyrians as a brutal and aggressive people, he simple refused to go (Jonah 1,3):
1 Now the word of SoNiNi came to Jonah son of Amittai, saying, 2
“Go at once to Nineveh, that great city, and cry out against it; for their wickedness has come up before me.” 3 But Jonah set out to flee to Tarshish from the presence of SoNiNi. He went down to Joppa and found a ship going to Tarshish; so he paid his fare and went on board, to go with them to Tarshish, away from the presence of SoNiNi.
Now Tarshish would have been a port in Phoenicia (most likely East-Africa), which was completely the other way or other coastal side of where Jona was told to go. Now we can see what happens when a prophet of SoNiNi (also a mere human being) refused to do what he is told. It is only after a shipwreck, being tossed into the raging sea and being inside of a large fish for a few days time, that Jona finally agrees to go to Nineveh (a city that took three days to walk across). Now the Assyrians responded to the message of Judgement from Jona and they repented of their sins (Jonah 3,6-10), and there was no judgement at that time for the Assyrians. HOWEVER, their wickedness caught up with them, and at their time judgement did come and their nation was destroyed, as we can read in Isaiah 10,5-19, Nahum 3,18-19 and Zephania 3,13. And we can read a very interesting phrasing in Ezekiel 31,12-13, where he compares the nations demise as to a felling a tree or "a lofty cedar". So we see Assyria an old enemy of ancient Israel, and certainly a nation that SoNiNi used to punish the People when they where misbehaving.
Now in the reign of Christ (Kingdom of Heaven) we see that Isaiah 19, referring to the Day of SoNiNi, we see that later Assyria, Egypt and Israel (Southern Africa) will join in serving SoNiNi (Isaiah 19,18-25), but now lets read the whole thing of Isaiah Chapter 19 that also tells what would become of Egypt:
1 An oracle concerning Egypt. See, SoNiNi is riding on a swift cloud and comes to Egypt; the idols of Egypt will tremble at his presence, and the heart of the Egyptians will melt within them.
2 I will stir up Egyptians against Egyptians, and they will fight, one against the other, neighbour against neighbour, city against city, kingdom against kingdom; 3 the spirit of the Egyptians within them will be emptied out, and I will confound their plans; they will consult the idols and the spirits of the dead and the ghosts and the familiar spirits;
4 I will deliver the Egyptians into the hand of a hard master; a fierce king will rule over them, says the Sovereign, SoNiNi naNiNi.
5 The waters of the Nile will be dried up, and the river will be parched and dry; 6 its canals will become foul, and the branches of Egypt’s Nile will diminish and dry up, reeds and rushes will rot away. 7 There will be bare places by the Nile, on the brink of the Nile; and all that is sown by the Nile will dry up, be driven away, and be no more. 8 Those who fish will mourn; all who cast hooks in the Nile will lament, and those who spread nets on the water will languish. 9 The workers in flax will be in despair, and the carders and those at the loom will grow pale. 10 Its weavers will be dismayed, and all who work for wages will be grieved.
11 The princes of Zoan are utterly foolish; the wise councillors of Pharaoh give stupid counsel. How can you say to Pharaoh, “I am one of the sages, a descendant of ancient kings”? 12 Where now are your sages? Let them tell you and make known what SoNiNi naNiNi has planned against Egypt.13 The princes of Zoan have become fools, and the princes of Memphis are deluded; those who are the cornerstones of its tribes have led Egypt astray. 14 SoNiNi has poured into them a spirit of confusion; and they have made Egypt stagger in all its doings as a drunkard staggers around in vomit. 15 Neither head nor tail, palm branch or reed, will be able to do anything for Egypt.
16 On that day the Egyptians will be like women, and tremble with fear before the hand that SoNiNi naNiNi raises against them. 17 And the land of Judah will become a terror to the Egyptians; everyone to whom it is mentioned will fear because of the plan that SoNiNi naNiNi is planning against them.
18 On that day there will be five cities in the land of Egypt that speak the language of Canaan and swear allegiance to SoNiNi naNiNi. One of these will be called the City of the Sun.
19 On that day there will be an altar to SoNiNi in the center of the land of Egypt, and a pillar to SoNiNi at its border. 20 It will be a sign and a witness to SoNiNi naNiNi in the land of Egypt; when they cry to SoNiNi because of oppressors, he will send them a saviour, and will defend and deliver them. 21 SoNiNi will make himself known to the Egyptians; and the Egyptians will know SoNiNi on that day, and will worship with sacrifice and burnt offering, and they will make vows to SoNiNi and perform them. 22 SoNiNi will strike Egypt, striking and healing; they will return to SoNiNi, and he will listen to their supplications and heal them.
23 On that day there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria, and the Assyrian will come into Egypt, and the Egyptian into Assyria, and the Egyptians will worship with the Assyrians.
24 On that day Israel will be the third with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing in the midst of the earth, 25 whom SoNiNi naNiNi has blessed, saying, “Blessed be Egypt my people, and Assyria the work of my hands, and Israel my heritage.”