William F. Dankenbring
“And there will be SIGNS in the Heavens”
Astonishing as it seems, four lunar eclipses will occur on God’s
annual Holy Days during Passover and Sukkot in the
years 2014 and 2015, and two solar eclipses on Nisan 1 and
the Feast of Trumpets! These are exceedingly rare occurrences,
especially when they dovetail with God’s Holy Days! What
does it all mean? What is the prophetic significance? It’s
time to wake up and take heed of these ominous, fateful
warnings from heaven!
According to the Jewish calendar, the year 2008 is a Sabbatical year. A new Sabbatical cycle will begin September 29, 2008. 2015 will also be a Sabbatical year.
But most amazing of all, it has been discovered that in the years 2014 and 2015 there will be two solar eclipses and four lunar eclipses, all of them occurring on Jewish Holy Days!
The Lunar eclipses break down as follows:
Passover April 15, 2014
Feast of Tabernacles October 8, 2014
Passover April 4, 2015
Feast of Tabernacles September 28, 2015
The two Solar eclipses connected with God’s Holy Days in 2014-2015 occur:
Adar 29/Nisan 1(new year) March 20, 2015
Feast of Trumpets September 13, 2015
It was on Nisan 1 that the Hebrew new year’s day occurred, according to the Scriptures (Exo.12:1-2). On the anniversary of this date, one year later, Moses raised up the Tabernacle of God, inaugurated it, and the glory of God descended from heaven (Exodus 40:2, 17, 34).
The real shocker is that this phenomenon is extremely rare, for this pattern of eclipses to fall on both Passover and Sukkot in two years in a row, and for a solar eclipse to occur on important Holy Days in the same year (2015).
This intriguing, incredible discovery comes from Mark Biltz, pastor of El Shaddai Ministries, in Bonner Lake, Washington.
Biltz was intrigued with the statement in the Scriptures that connect the second coming of the Messiah with “signs in the heavens,” particularly the signs that “the sun will be turned into darkness and the moon into blood” before the return of Christ.
He went on the internet, to the U.S. Government NASA website to see if there were any significant eclipses of the sun and moon during the next few years. To his surprise, he discovered four lunar eclipses in the Sabbatical year 2014/2015, and was intrigued by the fact that they occurred on God’s annual Holy Days!
Writing about the amazing discovery in the May 2008 issue of Prophecy in the News, J. R. Church declares, “This is most unusual. It is a rare occurrence for four lunar cycles on successive Passover and the Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot) observances. It will not happen again for hundreds of years.”
Says J. R. Church, in a letter accompanying the magazine issue, “Four lunar eclipses occurring on the Feast of Tabernacles and Passover in two successive years are phenomenal. But add to them two solar eclipses on the two days that open the Jewish year – Adar 29/Nisan1, just two weeks before Passover, and Tishri 1 (Rosh Hashannah) – is uncanny. On each of these six Jewish Holy Days, the sun will be darkened and the moon will not give her light. Will this happen again in the 21st century? No. Did it happen in the 20th century? Yes, in 1949/1950, the year following Israel’s statehood, and 1967/1968, the year Jerusalem was liberated in the Six-Day War! Before that, you have to go back to 1493 for four successive lunar eclipses on Passover and the Feast of Tabernacles” (May 2008 letter).
Is God Almighty telling us something? Skeptics and scoffers will denounce the discovery as mere coincidence, but the prophet Daniel informs us, “Many shall be purified, made white, and refined. But the wicked shall do wickedly; and none of the wicked will understand, but the wise will understand” (Dan.12:10).
Peter warned, “Scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, and saying, ‘Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation” (II Pet.3:3-4).
Another shocking discovery is that coming up this summer there will be three SOLAR eclipses in a row, in 2008, 2009, and 2010, all on the date of the first of Av, the fifth Hebrew month of the year.
Av 1 August 1, 2008 partial solar eclipse
Av 1 July 22, 2009 partial solar eclipse
Av 1 July 11, 2010 partial solar eclipse
The first day of Av is in the middle of the time period when the Jewish people mourn the destruction of the Temple of God. Historically Moses descended from Mt. Sinai with the two tablets of the Ten Commandments, and found the people engaged in gross idolatry at the foot of the mountain. That was on Tammuz 17. Also, on Av 9, the Hebrew spies returned from spying out the land of Canaan and brought an evil report – and the people lost faith in God, and were condemned to wander 40 years in the wilderness (Numbers 14:34). Av 9 also commemorates the date of the destruction of the first Temple by Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon in 586 B.C., and the second Temple by the Roman general Titus on the same date in 70 A.D.
These two dates are days of infamy in Israel. The three week period between Tammuz 17 and Av 9 are called “between the straits” and are days of mourning, repentance, and lamentations.
How interesting that a solar eclipse will fall on the date of Av 1, in the middle of mourning and lamentation, three years in a row!
Mark Blitz believes that these phenomenal solar eclipses on this date signify that God could begin judging the Gentile nations this summer, beginning Av 1. Solar eclipses, he says, are designed for Gentile nations, whereas lunar eclipses are designed for Israel. These eclipses, too, then could be a WARNING FROM GOD TO A WAYWARD WORLD!
The Second Coming
Writes Joe Kovacs for WorldNetDaily,“Will Jesus Christ return to Earth in the year 2015? And can studying NASA’s website ~ evidence for such a scenario?
“A minister who promotes the Old Testament roots of Christianity suggests a rare string of lunar and solar eclipses said to fall on God’s annual holy days seven years from
now could herald what’s come to be known as the ‘Second Coming’ of Jesus.
“ ‘God wants us to look at the biblical calendar,’ says Mark Biltz, pastor of El Shaddai Ministries in Bonney Lake, Wash. ‘The reason we need to be watching is [because] He will signal His appearance. But we have to know what to be watching as well. So we need to be watching the biblical holidays.’” (“Blood Moon Eclipses: 2nd Coming in 2015? Minister uses NASA forecasting to study signals of Jesus’ return,” WorldNetDaily, May 9, 2008).
In an interview with J. R. Church of “Prophecy in the News,” Biltz said he’s been “studying prophecies that focus on the sun and moon, even going back to the book of Genesis where it states the lights in the sky would be ‘be for signs, and for seasons.’
“ ‘It means a signal, kind of like ‘one if by land, two if by sea.’ It’s like
God wants to signal us,’ he said. ‘The Hebrew word implies . . . ‘not only is it a signal, but it’s a signal for coming or His appearing.’”
Biltz adds, “You have the religious year beginning with the total solar eclipse, two weeks later a total lunar eclipse on Passover, and then the civil year beginning with the solar eclipse followed two weeks later by another total blood red moon on the Feast of Succoth all in 2015.”
Biltz focused on the precise times of solar and lunar eclipses, sometimes called “blood moons,” by logging onto NASA’s website on eclipses. He noticed a rare phenomenon of four consecutive total lunar eclipses which are known as a “tetrad.” During this century, tetrads occur at least six times, but the only string of four consecutive “blood moons” coincide with God’s Holy days of Passover and the Feast of Tabernacles. This occurs between the years 2014 and 2015 on today’s Gregorian calendar.
In the 20th century, he noticed that such successive blood moons coinciding with Passover and Tabernacles occurred only on 1967-68, the year the Jews liberated Jerusalem from the control of the Arabs. He also noted that the only other such combination of eclipses in the 20th century took place in 1949-50, the year following the Jewish state’s hard-fought war of independence, when Israel became a nation.
Just how significant is this astounding information? Is this another tell-tale clue pinpointing the period of the second coming of the Messiah?
“Signs” in the Heavens
Why did God create the stars in the heavens in the first place? We read one significant answer in Genesis, the first chapter.
Moses wrote: “And God said, ‘Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as SIGNS to mark seasons and days and years” (Genesis 1:14, NIV).
The word for “sign” here, in the Hebrew, is owth, and means “a signal, as a flag, beacon, monument, omen, prodigy, evidence,” etc. The word for “seasons” is the Hebrew moadim and means “festivals, literally, appointed times.”
Gesenius’ Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon points out that this word means “a sign,” “a token” (Exo.12:13; Josh.2:12), “signs and times” (Gen.1:14), i.e., “signs of times.” It is used of a military ensign, a sign of something past, and a sign of something future, a portent, as well as a sign of anything which cannot be seen.
For “seasons”, Strong’s Concordance has “an appointment, i.e. a fixed time or season; spec. a festival.” Gesenius has it, “(1) a set time, . . . (2) an assembly . . . (3) a place in which an assembly is held . . . (4) an appointed time, a signal.”
Thus heavenly bodies, and the periodic return of comets, and celestial meteor showers, and eclipses, can be, in Biblical terms, a “heavenly sign”! Yeshua spoke of such signs occurring before His return to planet Earth. When such a sign occurs on a moad or moadim, or Festival of God, it is especially significant.
Jesus Christ Himself said, referring to the days before His second coming: “And there will be fearful sights and GREAT SIGNS from heaven” (Luke 21:11, KJV). Christ went on, “And there will be SIGNS in the sun, in the moon, and in the stars . . .” (Luke 21: 25).
Also speaking of His second coming, to rule this world, and to deliver mankind from its greatest crisis in all human history, Jesus foretold: “Immediately after the tribulation of those days, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars [meteors] will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken [an incredible cosmic quaking and shaking — see Hebrews 12:25-28; Hag.2:21-23]. Then the SIGN of the Son of Man will APPEAR in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will SEE the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and glory” (Matt.24:29-31).
Such signs are also mentioned as occurring before the day of the Lord in the Tanakh — the Old Testament Scriptures (Joel 2:30-31; Joel 2:10; Joel 3:14-16).
Does God often send mysterious “signs” in the heavens before He performs mighty works in the earth? What do the Scriptures say about this?
The prophet Joel tells us, “The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, BEFORE the coming of the great and awesome day of the LORD” (Joel 2:31).
These awesome occurrences in the skies and heavens will stagger mankind, causing terrible fright and anxiety. John in Revelation prophesied, that in the period just before the coming of the Messiah, and the “Day of the Lord,” that great signs would take place: “I look when He opened the sixth seal, and behold, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became like blood” (Rev.6:12).
“And the stars of heaven fell to the earth [meteor showers], as a fig tree droops its late figs when it is shaken by a mighty wind. Then the sky receded as a scroll when it is rolled up, and every mountain and island was moved out of its place” (Rev.6:13-14). After this, then, comes the final “Day of the Lord” — the time when God Himself begins to punish the nations, and bring His divine judgments of wrath and fury.
Jesus’ Step-by-Step Prophecy
Jesus’ disciples came to Him and asked Him privately, “When shall these things be? And what shall be the SIGN of thy coming, and of the END of the world [Greek aion, “age”]?” (Matt.24:3). Jesus warned them first of all to beware of false prophets and false religious teachers who proclaim heresy (Matt.24:4-5). He then prophesied wars and rumors of wars, but said these did not signal the end (verse 6). He even predicted wars, earthquakes, famines and plagues, but said these were but “the beginning of sorrows” (verses 7-8).
Jesus then warned that persecution of true Christians would greatly increase (verses 9-20), and many false prophets and deceivers would rise up (verse 11). This has begun to happen around the world — with Christians being persecuted vehemently in Turkey, Egypt, India, China, Moslem countries, and even in “secular” societies like the United States, and the western world!
Jesus then announced, “And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold” (verse 12). This has begun to happen! The world has seen a sharp increase in violence, lawlessness, and general immorality and iniquity. Riots, looting, arson, murder, pornography, violence in movies, profanity, and the breakdown of the home and family — all are contributing to a world gone berserk and gangs and rioters running amok! Civil disorder and ethnic strife and hatred are rapidly increasing.
In the midst of this, Jesus said, “This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in ALL THE WORLD for a WITNESS unto all nations; and THEN the END will come” (verse 14). That also has begun to happen! In the pages of Prophecy Flash, and via the internet and worldwide web around the world, this final message of the coming of God’s KINGDOM is being hurled around the globe!
Jesus said that the next thing to look for is “the abomination of desolation” standing in the Temple of God in Jerusalem (Matt.24:15) – and when we see that happening, those in Jerusalem should FLEE to the hills and mountains for safety (verses 16-20). That final invasion of Israel and Jerusalem in the Middle East will lead to a captivity and time of travail lasting 42 months (compare Matt.24:21-22 with Rev.13:4-6, 11:1-2, 12:6, 14).
Notice – Jesus gave us a specific TIME TABLE of many sequential prophecies, each to be fulfilled in their proper order, BEFORE and LEADING UP TO HIS SECOND COMING! After this Great Tribulation, Jesus foretold great signs in the heavens, followed by the “Day of the Lord” – the time He will return in awesome glory and power (Matt.24:29-31). This will occur at the seventh or “last” trumpet (I Cor.15:50-51; I Thess.4:14-17; Rev.11:15).
Isn’t this plain?
These are NOT mere “speculations”! The apostle Peter wrote in these terms: “We have also a MORE SURE WORD OF PROPHECY; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a LIGHT that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:
“Knowing this first, that NO prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man, but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Spirit” (II Pet.1:19-21).
Prophecy is a vital and integral part of the Word of God! It is not something which should be treated lightly, cavalierly, with disrespect and dishonor. It is vital to our SALVATION! If it were not so important, then God would not have inspired 2/3rds of His Word to deal with prophecy, and 90% of that to apply to the LAST DAYS, the generation alive just before the return of the Messiah in awesome power and glory to deliver His people and to save the earth from utter annihilation, destruction, and cosmocide!
Paul wrote, even commanded, “Never disdain prophetic revelations” (I Thess.5:20, Moffatt), or, “Do not scoff at those who prophesy” (TLB). Have you become a scoffer in these last days?
What is the main lesson these vital End-Time SIGNS in the heavens show us?
OUR GENERATION — this present generation — will be the FINAL, LAST, END-TIME GENERATION that will see all these things come to pass, and that will WITNESS the awesome, spine-tingling return of JESUS CHRIST, THE MESSIAH in tremendous power and unimaginable GLORY!!!
Jesus Himself said: “Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till ALL these things be fulfilled” (Matt.24:34). You and I – those of us of THIS present generation of the Atomic Bomb, nuclear weapons, biological and chemical weapons of mass destruction – WE are the ones living in the Biblical “time of the end” — the FINAL generation! The time has come. The Messiah’s footsteps are approaching. His coming is near. His heavenly stallion is getting nervous, chomping at the bit, getting ready for that great ride through the sky (Rev.19:11-14). The heavenly army is growing tense with excitement and anticipation. The time is near – the moment we are all breathlessly waiting for.
The “signs” are increasing, for those who have eyes to see and hearts to understand! John declares:
“The angel whom I saw standing on the sea and on the
land raised up his hand to heaven and swore by Him
who lives forever and ever, who created heaven and the
things that are in it, the earth and the things that are in
it, that there should be delay no longer.
“But in the days of the sounding of the seventh angel,
when he is about to sound, the mystery of God would be
finished, as he declared to His servants the prophets”
(Revelation 10:5-7, NKJV).
Could the years 2014-2015 picture the final years of the countdown to the approaching footsteps of the Messiah?
Could the present “Sabbatical week” – 2008-2015 – be the beginning of the final week of “woes” — the final seven years of this age?
Could this be the beginning of Daniel’s 70th week, which heralds in the “end of the age,” “to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy, and to anoint the Most Holy”? (Dan.9:24-27).
Could this be the final “seven times” or “years” of Leviticus 26 – a time of plagues and punishments upon all Israel? God says, “I will punish you seven times [“years”] more for your sins. I will break the pride of your power; I will make your heavens like iron and your earth like bronze. And your strength shall be spent in vain” (Lev.26:18—20).
During this time, God says, “Your highways shall be desolate” (verse 22). “I will bring a sword against you that will execute the vengeance of the covenant . . . I will send pestilence among you . . . I will lay your cities waste and bring your sanctuaries into desolation . . . I will scatter you among the nations and draw out a sword after you; your land shall be desolate and your cities waste” (Lev.26:22-33).
But this horrendous time of punishment will terminate with the COMING OF THE MESSIAH!
These heavenly signs are a WITNESS from God to underscore that fact that the end is drawing to a close very SOON! These heavenly portents are very auspicious for true Christians and Messianic believers! As Yeshua says:
“Now when these things BEGIN to happen, LOOK UP
and LIFT UP your heads, because your REDEMPTION
draws near” (Luke 21:28).
Blessed is He that comes in the Name of the Lord! Baruch haba ha shem Adonai!
As God’s people, we urgently, breathlessly await that “Great Day of Jezreel” and the coming of our Lord!