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The ‘Just Men’ of England Live On
Rev. Dr. Peter D. Matthews
Andre Schwarz-Bart wrote a book called ‘The Last of The Just’ speaking of the Just Men of God. Specifically, he was writing about the Levy family. They were one of the many families of the Lamed-Vovnik, or “36 righteous ones” in each generation that greet Shekhinah, and re-establish the connection of the Temple within. Essentially it means, “Happy are they that wait lo [for Him]” (Isaiah 30:18), speaking of YHVH and Shekhinah as they “rise together”, and the thirty-six commune with Her daily. The numeric value for “lo” is 36. Andre paints the picture that these people often don’t know they are the Lamed Vovnik, for they are humble workers who underpin Creation during their day-to-day actions. Some who operate from the left, often women, are known to uphold Creation during their dream time. Whilst they can be rabbis and even Christian preachers, more often than not they work in a trade or manual labour like Mordecai Levy who chose to pick potatoes. They might love music or dance, but one thing for sure – they are born of one of the royal Hebrew lineages, in this case the Levy family. They are not always well spoken, and often have disabilities. They are not the one’s you would think God would choose, like the shepherd boy David, who became a King.
Andre’s story begins with Rabbi Yom Tom Levy in York, who were involved in the massacre that occurred on Shabbat Hagadol, 16 March 1190AD, not 11 March 1185AD in his book. Andre painted the picture how the family were originally from Zemyock, Poland. If you look that town up you won’t find it. If you know the Hebrew language like I do, Zemyock in Hebrew is זינוק (zemyuk), meaning “leaping or jumping” and translated into Polish it is the word “Skoki” also meaning “jumping”. Skoki is a real town in Poland, 41km from Poznan, Poland, where they had a synagogue “from time immemorial”, where many Jews perished during the Holocaust, just as Andre described in the book.
Part of the story Andre didn’t know is that in truth Rabbi Levy was not English at all. He was born in Joigny, in the south of France and was invited to come and settle a matter of Hebrew law. Why? Rabbi Levy was a great Tosafist and was a “famous doctor of the law who is said to have come from parts beyond the sea to teach the English Jews. This man was held in honour among them all, and was obeyed by all, as if he had been one of the prophets.” His piyyut is still recited at Yom Kippur to this very day around the world, and more will be revealed in my upcoming book.
According to historical documents, Rabbi Yom Tov Levy was a great Tosafist (scholar of the Talmud) who held a Doctorate Degree of Law, and studied Kabbalah (Oral Tradition) under his father Isaac and the great Rabbi Jacob Tam (1100-1171AD) of Paris. Rabbi Yom Tom Levy was also a student of Rabbi Isaac ben Abraham, also known as “RIZBA” of Dampierre, France who also spent time in Troyes and Paris. Like many of the Lamed-Vovnik throughout history, the evil one tried to lure them all together in one place to answer a question of law. How could they all refuse? It was a tradition of the Hebrews to debate the law. All but a few of the Lamed-Vovnik assembled in one place, just as the evil of Egypt assembled against them around 2,500 years earlier. A few foresaw what was coming and did not attend. One man in particular of Troyes did not take up the call. There is always one of the thirty-six who sees all that is going on around them, often a scholar or prophet, or both. If this one had come, then maybe the Siege of Jerusalem would never have been successful.
Yom Tom Levy had at least two sons. We know that Solomon Levy survived him in England and his son Judah Yom Tov Levy who survived him in Paris also became a famous rabbi following in his father’s footsteps. Rabbi Yom Tom Levy also had connections to the family lineage of Rashi, who did not attend the meeting in York mentioned above, although his family connection to Rabbi Yom Tov Levi is unknown at this time. A number of Rashi’s grandchildren were named after Rabbi Yom Tom Levy’s son, Rabbi Judah Yom Tov Levy of Paris.
In my opinion, Andre’s major error was that Ernie Levy was ‘The Last of the Just Men’. If Andre was correct, based upon the Zohar of Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai, the world would have come to an end on 16 March 1190AD. At I see it, his error began from the beginning, because he assumed (or Ernie assumed) that when one Lamed-Vovnik was born, the father died. This is flawed theology. The correct teaching is: there are “36 righteous ones” in each generation that greet Shekhinah daily, and re-establish the connection of the Temple within. This means the sons and daughters (plural) exist in each generation of the Hebrew lineages (Levy, Solomon, ha Cohen, ha Levi, Woolf, Isaacs, Abraham, etc) and the mantle is passed down once the Lamed-Vovnik passes away, and not before. There are literally thousands of Lamed-Vovnik in waiting around the world right now. The son or daughter is prepared from the day he or she is born, and is greeted by Shekhinah (Holy Spirit) when they come of age. When the time comes to take the mantle, they know! They come face-to-face (expression, meaning “back” like Moses) with Shekhinah and live, and are blessed beyond belief, but they are also plagued by the sorrows of world and live in pain, so much pain that they would prefer to die – but they must keep going to save the world one day at a time!
Manasseh Levy lived in London in the late 13th century. His sons (plural) were Israel, Solomon and Isaac. Isaac Levy, like his brothers, were cobblers (shoemakers and repairers), a trade that followed the Levy family in London right through to the 18th century. They intermarried the Levy, Solomon, ha Cohen, ha Levi, Woolf, Isaacs and Abraham families. Many of them are buried in the Great Synagogue of London (Ashkenazim), and some intermarried with Sephardic families in the Hambro Synagogue (both Sephardim and Ashkenazim), and the first synagogue of London – the Bevis Marks Synagogue (Sephardim). Their descendants have spread around the world into many generations. The ‘Just Men and Women’ live on to serve Shekhinah and mankind. They uphold the world until the great and fearful day of the Messiah returns. They were created to bring light into the world in times of darkness.
Don’t ask if any of them are a Lamed-Vovnik, because if they are asked, they will deny it. Those that claim to be the Lamed-Vovnik are not. The true Lamed-Vovnik are often quiet hermits who merely strive to share the light of God – the deep secrets of Creation and the world to come. These people are “lofty trees” – deep-rooted sturdy trees by the waters (Psalms 104:16) – experts in their fields like Rabbi Yom Tom Levy, who know how to use the commands of God correctly, because in the wrong hands these commands could kill thousands of people across the earth.
Andre’s other major error in my opinion was his work on the “dog”. According to the Judaistic doctines of reincarnation, after death a person can be shown down one of 320 million pathways, some straight, some narrow, some windy, and some called the “snares of death” (Psalms 18:5), the infamous “highway to hell” (Proverbs 7:27) and the hellhounds or “way of the dog” that eats you (1 Kings, 14:11, 16:4, 21:24, 2 Kings 9:10, Psalms 22:16). However, true Israelites do not enter those pathways, for it is written:
But among the Israelites it will be so peaceful that not even a dog will bark. Then you will know that the LORD makes a distinction between the Egyptians and the Israelites (Exodus 11:7).
Israelites will enter the path of life, for it is written: “The path of life leads upward for the wise; they leave the grave behind” (Proverbs 15:24). Thus, the Levy family were true Israelites, and after death they were sent down the straight path of blessing, and not a single dog barked. How can one enter the way of the dog before death? Yes, one could compare the Nazi’s to Satan, but this cannot be applied to life after death. It is Scripturally flawed. Ernie Levy knew what was coming and walked the path of life, leaving the grave behind, as all true Lamed-Vovnik’s should do. One cannot be a Lamed-Vovnik without Israelite blood in your veins.
Finally, for those of you who think you might be a Lamed-Vovnik, when the mantle comes upon you, you will know it, and it will change your life forever. Shekhinah can come upon you powerfully and make you prophesy, and change you into a different person entirely:
“When you arrive at Gibeah of God, where the garrison of the Philistines is located, you will meet a band of prophets coming down from the place of worship. They will be playing a harp, a tambourine, a flute, and a lyre, and they will be prophesying. At that time the Spirit of the LORD will come powerfully upon you, and you will prophesy with them. You will be changed into a different person. After these signs take place, do what must be done, for God is with you.” (1 Samuel 10:5-7)
This is what is to come Israel. You shall prophesy again. When that day comes very soon, you must do what must be done! If you don’t, there are consequences. Actions and reactions, causes and effects. Become a solution, not a cause. Don’t ridicule. Don’t react. Walk in faith.
© 2018-2020 inclusive Dr Peter D Matthews. All rights reserved. This academic paper may be freely used for academic purposes, subject to citing Dr Peter D Matthews as the author.
 Tikkinei ha Zohar 1558-60, First Tikkun, 50b.
 Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedron 97b.
 Jewish Families of Skoki formerly Schokken Prussia: Jehuda Loeb Halevi (1791–1819). https://www.geni.com/projects/Jewish-Families-of-Skoki-formerly-Schokken-Prussia/33919
 Dobson, R.B., The Jews of Medieval York and the Massacre of March 1190, p. 14-15. The Palgrave Dictionary of Medieval Anglo-Jewish History, p196. www.colinshindler.com/articles/sermons/on-the-800th-anniversary-of-the-york-massacre/
 Brachman, Rabbi Eli: Yom Tov of York: England’s only Yom Kippur liturgical poet and martyr, Oxford Chabad Society. https://www.oxfordchabad.org/templates/articlecco_cdo/aid/3803257/jewish/Yom-Tov-of-York-Englands-only-Yom-Kippur-liturgical-poet-and-martyr.htm
 Matthews, Dr Peter D (2013), Shakespeare Exhumed: The Bassano Chronicles, Bassano Publishing House, ISBN 9780987365255, pp. 118-23.
 1 Samuel 10:5-7 NLT.