There’s a video currently on the web, promoted by a well known prophecy website, that a whole bunch of you have either sent links to or asked about it or both. Here’s my response.
This video shows the result of tracking solar and lunar eclipses and comparing them with Levitical Feasts, and notes that the only time in this century when 4 consecutive full lunar eclipses, known as a tetrad, will coincide with either Passover or the Feast of Tabernacles is in the years 2014-2015. Lunar eclipses are also known as “blood moons” because the moon often takes on a red cast during an eclipse.
There will also be 2 solar eclipses during that time. In the spring of 2015 Israel’s religious year will begin with a total solar eclipse, followed two weeks later a total lunar eclipse on Passover. And then six months later the sequence will repeat itself with a second solar eclipse on Rosh Hashanna followed two weeks after that by another total lunar eclipse on the Feast of Tabernacles, all in 2015.
The last time anything like this happened was in 1967, when Jerusalem became an undivided Jewish city again, and before that there were several occurrences during the years of 1948-50, as Israel was becoming a nation. There were none at all in the 1800’s, 1700’s, or 1600’s, and none in the 1500’s that coincided with Feast Days.
What Does That Mean?
The conclusion being drawn from this by the video’s producer is that 2015 is the most likely year for the Lord’s 2nd coming in the entire 21st Century, and the fall is the best time in that year.
Prophecy buffs from across the spectrum are falling all over themselves to get on board this. But in the rush of emotion that rightfully accompanies thoughts of the Lord’s impending return most are ignoring a tool for evaluating where we are in the end times that I first introduced in my series entitled “Seven Things You Have To Know To Understand End Times Prophecy”. It’s a business management tool called back scheduling. (You can access the series from our home page.)
Sensational claims like the one made in this video can result in real confusion if you don’t know the sequence in which major End Times events will occur. Actually their order is very logical, and once you learn it, you’ll wonder why you didn’t see it before. The best way to figure it out is to perform what the business world sometimes calls a back scheduling exercise. It involves going to the very end of a process and identifying its final outcome. Then you list in reverse order all the things that have to happen to produce that outcome, backing into the present. It’s simpler than it sounds, and much simpler in prophecy than in business because there are many fewer events to organize. Here’s how it goes.
We all think of Eternity as the final outcome, and so starting at the end and working backwards means we begin there. But the last major event described in any detail in the Bible is the Kingdom Age or Millennium, the Lord’s 1000 year reign on Earth, which is distinguished from and precedes Eternity. Simply put, Eternity can’t begin until the Millennium ends.
The Millennium obviously can’t happen till the Second Coming, because that’s when the Lord returns to establish it. And the Second Coming can’t happen till the end of the Great Tribulation. And that can’t happen till the anti-Christ stands in the Temple in Israel declaring himself to be God. (2 Thes. 2:4) That’s the event Jesus warned Israel to look for as the Great Tribulation’s opening salvo. He called it “The Abomination of Desolation” in Matt. 24:15-21.
But that can’t happen till there’s a Temple. There hasn’t been a Temple in Israel since 70AD and there won’t be one until the Jews decide they need one. That won’t happen until God reinstates their Old Covenant relationship, signaling the start of Daniel’s 70th week. And that can’t happen till the Battle of Ezekiel 38-39 is won, because it’s Ezekiel’s battle that officially draws the Jews back to God. (Ezek. 39:22) And that can’t happen till the Church is gone, because the Church and Israel are mutually exclusive to Him. (Romans 11:25 & Acts 15:13-18) And that brings us to the present, because there is no preceding event for the Rapture of the Church. It could happen at any time.
Using this scheduling tool we can see how end times events are scheduled to take place, and the only one whose timing is at all speculative is the Rapture. Some argue that there’s doubt about the timing of the Battle of Ezekiel 38 but I think the Bible is pretty clear in saying that the battle of Ezekiel 38 is Israel’s wake up call to begin Daniel’s 70th week. It’s the event that brings Israel back into covenant with God, requiring that a Temple be built. Daniel’s 70th week by definition is seven years long. The last half is the Great Tribulation, after which the Lord will return.
What’s The Point?
That brings me to my point, and to make it, I’ll use the back scheduling tool again. In order for the Lord to return in the fall of 2015, Daniel’s 70th week will have to begin the fall of 2008, a few months from now. That means that over the summer, the Battle of Ezekiel 38 will have to take place, and God will have to re-introduce Himself to Israel, bringing them back into an Old Covenant relationship that results in Biblical Judaism becoming the official and national religion of Israel. And the anti-Christ will have to appear and gain enough power to help Israel negotiate a seven year treaty that includes provisions for a Temple. (Daniel 9:27) Then there’s the matter of the Rapture of the Church. While this schedule is of course possible for God, having them all take place this summer would be a major departure from His normal approach to things.
In truth, there are several interesting facts you should know about this summer that make it an attractive possibility if you disregard everything we’ve just covered. Israel will celebrate its 60th birthday and at the same time the world’s population is projected to reach 6,666,666,666. The 1976th birthday of the church will also occur. (Because of calendar differences much of the Western church will celebrate on May 11, but the correct date is June 8-9.)
Also some military experts say that June will effectively be the last time this year that Israel will have an opportunity to take out Iran’s nuclear capabilities, an act that will obviously cause major repercussions in the Middle East. Iran’s rainy season begins in July making visibility an uncertain thing, and by September the US Presidential election will be ramped up for its all out run to our November election. Many observers believe that the current administration won’t agree to let such a distraction interfere with America’s focus on the election this fall. Adding these things into the mix has tempted a number of prophecy buffs to throw off all constraints and proclaim that the Day of the Lord is at hand.
Hold On Just A Minute!
But before we join them, let’s take a closer look. Have the conditions for Ezekiel 38 been met? Most of the players are lined up, the exception still being Turkey. But Syria, not mentioned in Ezekiel 38, is right in the thick of things, teamed up with Iran and North Korea in a new axis of evil focused against Israel. Can Isaiah 17 also happen this summer?
And then there’s the requirement that Israel be living in such a state of supposed peace as to be taken by surprise in a battle to the death. (Ezek. 38:11) If Israel goes after Iran’s nukes next month, they’ll be the ones pulling off the sneak attack. Could Iran’s certain retaliation in any way be called an unexpected surprise that catches Israel off guard? I don’t think so.
No, I think it’s much more likely that any war this summer between Israel and the Moslems would result in Syria’s demise and end in a false peace that puts into place the conditions necessary for Ezekiel 38 to happen some time later. And despite my earlier speculation about the 2012 magnetic polar reversal fulfilling the 6th seal of Rev. 6, I have to admit that the most likely coming event that fits the sequence and is worthy of announcement by signs in the heavens in 2015 would be the beginning of Daniel’s 70th week.
If these earlier Blood Moons did in fact announce the re-birth of the nation and the reunification of Jerusalem as it appears, then the next major step in Israels’ journey toward the Kingdom is their national reunion with their Creator. This is the way Ezekiel saw it happening, and in my view is important enough to God to merit such a celestial announcement. After all He’s been waiting to take them back for 2000 years.
“Come, let us return to the LORD. He has torn us to pieces but he will heal us; he has injured us but he will bind up our wounds. After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will restore us, that we may live in his presence.” (Hosea 6:1-2)
Thankfully, it won’t be long until we know for sure who’s right and who’s wrong. And it won’t take any rocket science to tell. Because if the 70th week is set to begin in September then the next few months will astonish the world in a breath taking series of prophetic fulfillments unparalleled since the Lord’s crucifixion and resurrection.