Saturday, January 28, 2012

Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star: Origins of the Star of David - Dissecting Dispensationalism Part 2

One of the things we humans seem to love doing is labelling each other into groups. Often times this happens for convenience, other times it happens so we can exclude or persecute others. Part of this labelling process seems to involve the creation of an image or logo to go along with the group. Sometimes, we adopt that logo ourselves.

We Christians use a cross or an ichthys (whether we know of their true origins or not) to let the world know we are Christians. I refrain from including either on my car because I'm a bad driver and I don't want to put people off of Jesus Christ on account of my driving. Also, the Bible doesn't command or suggest we do this.

Muslims of course sometimes use the crescent moon. It's not really of interest to me what the deeper meaning of this may or may not be, and I don't think it's helpful for us to tell Muslims what we think of Allah and any connection there may or may not be to the moon. That too is a whole 'nother topic, and one we've sort of covered before. We should be about bridge building to Jesus, and let the Holy Spirit do His work in people from there.

Jews (at least some), for one reason or another, have chosen to be identified by the Magen-David. The Shield (or Star) of David. The nation of Israel has also adopted this as their national emblem. Magen-David is also a brand of Kosher wine without sulfates that, I personally didn't like, but I'm sure goes great with the right cheese and challa bread.

Here's some really basic stuff.

When David wrote about God being his shield, he certainly didn't mean as a literal, physical shield and I would doubt that David would have made a visual representation of God at all, let alone in the shape of a star. That would be breaking one of the ten commandments. Rather, David referred to God (i presume) as a shield (magen) because He is always watching us, and can protect us from anything.

The name stuck, shield of David, and got attributed to the star.

Wait, why is a Christian blog writing about the Star of David?

Well, because there are probably Christians who think it's a good thing, AND there are Christians who think it's a symbol of Satan. In this second group, some people think that flying the star of David means that the nation of Israel isn't actually the Biblical or "real" Israel, and that Jews are actually Satan worshippers. You can imagine how easily this typically results in antisemitism and adoption of replacement theology.

What is to follow is hardly an extensive or exhaustive study on the origins of the star, and I doubt that I can find the whole truth this side of eternity. I will provide the best information I can find, from multiple viewpoints and you'll have to make your own decision from there. I do hope to dispel some rumors, and possibly eliminate or cast doubt on some perceived origins. Most importantly, whatever the origins of the star, I hope we can eliminate it as a cause for endorsing anti-semitism and/or "Jew bashing" among Christians.

After all, how likely is it that Jews (or any other group we can demonize) will want to hear the Gospel if we tell them they worship Satan? Recall Paul on Mars Hill. (Acts 17)

So, go forth, learn and pray for God to show you the truth.

Starting off, the one thing that can be said for sure, is that nobody seems to know for sure exactly when Jews started using the star, or exactly when it became associated with Judaism. Both About .com and Jewfaq say that both Christians and Muslims have also used it, and that Jews picked it up around the time of Kaballah (a topic for another day).

Wikipedia gives a 12th century date for Jewish use of the star. We'll revisit possible times of origin later. There are also indications that the star can be found in ancient buildings in India. In short, there's alot of stuff out there, and they can't all be true.

On to the various origins.

Possible pagan origins for the star of David:

One of the most popular opinions about the Magen-David is that it actually has pagan origins. This could be true without it being a real problem, and even some Jews may not see that as a problem.

A few years ago, Frank Lordi (formerly of Revelations Radio Network) did a show about the star of David and how that relates to the current nation of Israel.

Highlights are that he quotes an article by a rabbi and other Jewish sources indicating a non-Jewish origin. To be fair, in like manner, he also (perhaps rightly) criticises us Christians for wearing crosses. For both Jews and Christians, the Bible does not require or command us to adopt a symbol or a logo, and doing so may be displeasing to God, or at least something to pray about.

(Again, as a Christian, i don't know that I'm comfortable wearing a cross or using the Icthys. Especially the fish. I am ever thankful for what Christ did upon the cross, but nowhere did Jesus or the Bible tell us to wear one. We are to metaphorically take up the cross, die to ourselves, our desires and follow Him.)

Lordi also points out that Hitler, heavily into the occult, used the star to mark Jews as a burnt offering to his pagan god. An interesting claim. He also addresses some ties to Molech, Saturn and that the current Israel is actually secular, and therefore counterfeit.

We will be looking at the counterfeit Israel claims in another blog.

He makes a few more claims i find interesting, and could agree with, and a number that I'm not sure about. Give him a few minutes past the intro to get into the meat. It's interesting, but i don't agree 100% with him.

Frank's Podcast:

Counterfeit Israel Part I. The Star of David

Bro. Chris White, also of RRN, agrees with Frank on the pagan origins, yet differs on the counterfeit Israel. He believes (i think) that Israel is Israel. Unfortunately, Chris's show link is not there.

A quote from shownotes on an old Chris White podcast:

("This Episode is a response to Frank Lordi’s Recent podcasts called

“Counterfeit Israel Part I. The Star of David”

While Chris very much agrees with Frank that the “Star of David” is of Pagan origins, this episode looks at whether the fact that Israel is apparently under the control of The New World Order is a reason to say that the Israel is “Counterfeit.”

This episode is also a vehicle for Chris to explain how he believes the future wars will play out and to explain the “physiological operations” that are being forced on the world regarding Israel and the Jewish people.
Franks Podcast

Counterfeit Israel Part I. The Star of David

show notes

barry chamish website
the article chris reads from


Another interesting possible pagan origin for the star of David could come from Nimrod.

Dr. Future, on Page 96-97 of "Pandemonium's Engine," indicates that a 6 pointed star was both an indication of Nimrod, Isis and Inanna. Dr. Future also points out that some in the government of Israel have sought to reestablish Canaanite roots and he mentions a statue of Nimrod. If you haven't read it, go to and buy it. It's a great book.

Anyways, when I did a search for such a star, all i turned up was an 8 pointed star rather than the Magen-David. In short, an interesting idea, but we can't say for sure without more evidence.

Again, if you want more on pagan origins, check out the Frank Lordi link.

Some Jews justify the star, even if it does have pagan origins. I don't agree with the logic, as i recall in the old testament God commanded the pagan groves to be destroyed, and idols were typically ground into powder, but hang with me here...

"There also exists a principle that even something whose origins were pagan is acceptable if the pagans no longer attribute it pagan significance, e.g. if a tree which was once part of a pagan grove and the pagans who worshipped it no longer exist or have changed their religion the tree is no longer considered as attached to idol worship and does not have to be cut down."

-Yair Davidiy

The star probably does get used by pagans, occultists and in magic/alchemy (covered in the next section briefly) so does this change anything? I don't know.

To be fair though, any Christian using the pagan origins of the star of David as an issue against Jews or Israel, should also look at Jeremiah 10, which parallels our Christmas tree. Add to that the actual Christmas tree probably also has pagan origins as does the yule log and December 25. I would wager much of "Christmas" has pagan origins as well.

Since learning of these things (Saturnalia, etc.) i grow sort of uncomfortable around Christmas time.

Observing Jesus' birth on December 25, using Christmas trees of pagan origins doesn't make anyone less Christian, so why wouldn't we apply this logic to Jews and the star? How does adopting the star of David (if really pagan) make someone less Jewish? If we Christians make that argument against the Star-of-David dust in the eyes of Jews, then we need to deal with the yule log and Christmas tree in our own eye. Same goes for easter eggs, bunnies etc.

Don't get me wrong, Christ's birth and resurrection are not to be condemned, or made light of, but the way they are celebrated in our culture is pagan. Maybe on Christmas and Easter, we should dedicate those days as a time of prayer, Bible study and sharing of the actual stories rather than paying tribute to Santa and easter bunny.

Either way, we can't deride Jews as false Jews when Christians do the same thing.

Associations with Magic:

Of course those in Kaballah hold the star in high regard, as do those who practice magic. They believe there is magical power with the star, but this has little to do with the star's origins. An interesting sidenote for the most part, no need to dwell on this. People performing magic(k) can and do use many symbols, whether or not they actually originate in magic(k) or not. The star is one of them.

And of course, the main link to magic, especially in terms of an origin is as the seal of Solomon. This claim is that Solomon used the seal to control demons and make the temple. This of course is not Biblical, and besides, why would God allow His temple to be built by demons?

So, if you want more on that you're on your own. We're interested in the origins.

Star of David and star of Molech:

One of the most popular arguments i see used, and sadly this is often by Christians, is that the star of David is actually the star of molech/moloch. This typical argument usually insinuates that this connection to moloch means:

1) that Israel is not actually Israel, and that the Church has replaced Israel.

2) that Jews and the nation of Israel actually worship satan.

3) this then also ends up getting into anti-semitism/Jew bashing.

See here for a typical example:

Some say that golden calf Aaron made was Moloch, and that he put the star on it. There is no proof of this in the Bible. There is also no solid connection with a bull of any sort, though some have attempted to make that connection.

Wiki indicates that Moloch could have a connection to Cronus (who we'll talk about soon), or a sacrifice to a king. The most interesting thought (and good explanation for lack of evidence of a god named moloch) is that moloch was not a god, but a method of sacrifice. A "mulk" or "mlk". This "mlk" would be the sacrifice (possibly of a child) to a god.

Despite this, you will also often see these scriptures used to support the idea that the star of david is the star of a god name Moloch. I'm not 100% clear, but it also seems that people are saying the star of David, not only Moloch's but also Remphan's. So I'm not sure if they're saying they're the same, but probably saying the star is.

Amos 5:26
But ye have borne the tabernacle of your Moloch and Chiun your images, the star of your god, which ye made to yourselves. ...

Acts 7:43
Yea, ye took up the tabernacle of Moloch, and the star of your god Remphan, figures which ye made to worship them: and I will carry you away beyond Babylon.

Of course, there are no pictures in the Bible...

The "god" Remphan seems related to the planet Saturn, and of course there is a large hexagon at the north pole of the planet making an interesting possible link to a hexagram. (This shape appears in beehives also, so it's not wholly unknown in nature.) On Saturn though, we don't know if that effect existed in antiquity, what significance if any this has, or how anyone then could have known that. I'm not sure whether or not Satan would have known this, but wouldn't rule out the possibility. In that vein, maybe we should also include the possibility that it's fake/altered photos from NASA as well.

Also, I am not sure where Saturn is in signifigance to mythology, though i understand Cronus to be Saturn and he has sort of a Satan/Lucifer role. Take that for what it's worth. I'm not sure if Cronus worship involved sacrifice or not.

However, dubbing a hexagram/six pointed star/star of David as the star of Molech seems absurd, if only for the lack of evidence. Add to that the fact that Moloch may not be a god, but a method. The Bible does not say or give us pictures of what Molech or his star looked like. Neither do other ancient sources. In short, people making the star of David/Moloch claim, offer no real archaelogical proof that a 6 pointed star is related to moloch.

Note, there is no star in the ancient Baylonian depiction of Molech.

Stephen Yulish (A Jew who came to Christ) also addresses Moloch briefly in his article.

The star of David blog, who I've quoted several times above, has probably hundreds of articles on the star (which is why that blog is referenced so much today), as well as where it has popped up and has not shyed away from non-Jewish uses of the star. His take on the Moloch scenario is that there is no proof for it.

I agree, there seems to be no actual evidence that Moloch/Remphan was represented by a hexagram/star of David. In fact, at least in Roman/Greek worship of Saturn, they worshipped a figure carrying a scythe.

"The temple's main cult object to Saturn stood in its interior and was constructed from wood. The statue was veiled and carried a scythe, and according to some sources, was filled with oil. Its legs were bound throughout the year with linen bents, which were released only for the duration of the Saturnalia festival. While dedicated to the god Saturn, the temple's primary use was as the seat of the Royal Treasury of the Roman Empire, storing the Empire's reserves of gold and silver; in this function it was also called the 'Aerarium'."

It seems unlikely that the star of David is a Moloch-related symbol, and even if it is, that does not make Jews Moloch worshippers by default. Recall that the worship of Moloch (if he's a god at all) required child sacrifice, and i don't see droves of Jews lining up to kill babies. Rather, i would accuse those endorsing and getting an abortion of Moloch worship, since they are the ones actually killing babies.

A Jewish origin:

Since we're investigating the origin of Magen-David, we need to consider ALL available evidence, or at least multiple viewpoints. Moloch theorists should at least consider the fact that there may be a Jewish origin to the star. Hard to believe that Jews would actually use a Jewish symbol. (That's sarcasm).

Although many reference a more recent date, we have a possible star of David with an origin of about 1200 BC. That predates the middle ages and Kaballah by a gigantic margin. It's unclear from this article what the origins are, though the suggestion is Jewish, it's just that it's way older than most think.

An interesting quote (that i believe one of that blog's readers posted) from the forthcoming link as well. They sort of explain that the Magen David, might just be a way to write David.

"Our support for the Magen David as a symbol is based more on other factors, i.e. it could be seen as a valid short-hand Ancient Hebrew ("Canaanite-Phoenician") letter of writing the name David."

And some interesting related articles.

And an article by Uri Ofir that gives a possible Jewish origin. The summary of it is that the origin goes back to the original menorah described in Exodus 25. I once considered the menorah itself (being 6 pointed) as the source when i read through Exodus last year or so, but actually Ofir points to a decoration on the menorah as the source for Magen-David--the lily. Each candle would sit within a 6 petalled lily, and theoretically cast a shadow of the star of David upon the floor. Interesting indeed.

Summary of the views:

So there you have it. There are some possible links to paganism, in the Star of David's origin, but there is also a very real Jewish answer that i think should be considered. In any event, i don't believe the Moloch theory holds any water, and until I see an ancient Moloch with the star, i think it's safe to throw that one to the side.

If the origins are some other sort of pagan thing, then some of us Christians should think about the pagan things in our own lives and get rid of those before taking up opposition to the star. I'm not endorsing the star necessarily, but trying to make us less hypocritical. In any event, Jews do not worship the star in the same way we Christians do not worship the cross, Christmas tree, easter egg or Icthys.

No matter the origins though, Christians like Texe Marrs and many others shouldn't be so sold that their answer is correct. There is a good Jewish explanation, and also non-Molochian pagan origins. In other words, there are many explanations.

Too many are using the Moloch theory as a means to justify anti-Jewish sentiment, and not only does that make a slant against Jews, it is counter productive for the spread of the Gospel and makes us Christians look like hypocrites to the Jews. Much in the same way telling Muslims they worship a moon-god is not helpful either.

Again, it's a "why should i hear about your faith when you haven't respected me and accused that i worship Satan?"

Rather than focusing on this one point and using it to exclude the "other" (Jew, Muslim, etc) we should be focusing on Jesus and what He's done for us. This can be a Mars Hill moment.

Paul didn't berate the pagan Romans for following demons, rather, he applauded religiousness and that they even had a spot for an unknown god, and used that as a common thread, which wasn't much, to tell them about Jesus.

How much more could be done with the people whose faith and scriptures brought us our Messiah? Paul had but a thread, (and the Holy Spirit) but we have a complete foundation to work with.Texe