Pro and Con 1156
Total Lunar Eclipse of 10-28-04
Go to Astronomy Picture of the Day (10-29-04) for a great picture of the Blood Moon eclipse made by Fred Espenak of NASA.
A few msgs. back I explained how I understand and interpret the meaning of the pharase "under the feet". I don't think it means a woman (Virgo) standing on top of the Moon with the Moon in the area of Serpens, but rather under/beneath her feet while she is in the birth position, i.e. a reposed, laying down position.
The Moon on 9/11/3BC perfectly meets the conditions of Rev. 12 when she is pictured in the way a woman giving birth is generally assumed to be. I think the biblical descriptions of Mary fit this picture much more so than the typical Greek/Roman modern art picture of some regal "statue of liberty" type pose. Although some religions want to place Mary (Virgo) in a much higher worship icon, it is Christ and only Christ that is King and is to be praised and worshipped.
> > The Moon on 9/11/3BC perfectly meets the conditions of Rev. 12 when she is pictured in the way a woman giving birth is generally assumed to be.
On Sept. 11, BC 3, The Crescent Moon is not yet under her feet. It is near the border of Libra.
On the 12th, the Crescent Moon is definitely under her feet.
CAN THE HEAVENLY SIGN OF "THE MOON UNDER HER FEET" (REV. 12:1) SHOW US WHEN JESUS WAS BORN?
"God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for SIGNS, and for SEASONS (Mo'adim, APPOINTED TIMES), and for days, and YEARS" (Gen. 1:14).
The appointed time for the Feast of Trumpets and the beginning of the Hebrew Civil Year coincide on Tishri 1.
"HE APPOINTED THE MOON FOR SEASONS (Mo'adim, appointed times)" (Psa. 104:19). Therefore, I think we should look for the Moon to show us when Tishri 1, the Feast of Trumpets, begins. For it to actually show us anything, we need to see it. We can't see the dark New Moon.
The day Jesus was born was an appointed time, not only because it was the most important event to ever happen, but because it was Tishri 1, the Feast of Trumpets. It might be well worth our time to see what the movement of the Moon along the ecliptic can reveal.
The Day of the Lord is also an appointed time. Since it will be on Tishri 1, the Feast of Trumpets (Joel 1:15; 2:1-3), maybe the sign of "the moon under her feet" can show us when the Day of the Lord will arrive.
DOES REV. 12:1-5 APPLY TO JESUS' BIRTH?
Rev. 12:1-5 says, "there appeared a great wonder (simeion, SIGN) in heaven; A WOMAN (the constellation Virgo) CLOTHED WITH THE SUN (therefore, it is September, when the Sun is in Virgo), and THE MOON UNDER HER FEET (i.e., it's Tishri 1), and upon (epi, over) her head a crown of twelve stars (the constellation Coma Berenice is over her head, the 12 stars representing the 12 patriarchs of Israel, Gen. 37:9): And she being with child cried, TRAVAILING (i.e., during the Tribulation) in birth, and pained to be delivered (tikto, to bring forth a child). And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon (probably the constellation Hydra, meaning the abhorred; it runs below Virgo), having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads. And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born. And SHE BROUGHT FORTH A MAN CHILD, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and HER CHILD WAS CAUGHT UP UNTO GOD, AND TO HIS THRONE."
This passage seems to have a double reference, both to the birth of Jesus, which is the head of the Body of Christ, and to the Rapture of the Tribulation saints, which is the birth into a new world of the last foot of the Body of Christ. The overcomers of the church of Thyatira are said to "rule them with a rod of iron" along with Christ in Rev. 2:27, so we can see that the Bride of Christ previously caught up at the Pre-Trib Rapture is also included in this group.
Then the child probably represents the entire Body of Christ, including Jesus, the Head, who was caught up to God, the Pre-Trib-Rapture saints, who will be caught up to God, and the Pre-Wrath-Rapture saints, who will also be caught up to God. The sign of "the moon under her feet" was seen at the birth of Jesus, and he was "caught up (harpazo, as in I Thess. 4:16,17) to Heaven. The sign of "the moon under her feet" will also be seen as those of the Pre-Wrath Rapture are caught up to God. The birth of Jesus and the Pre-Wrath Rapture, the beginning and ending, seem to be when "the moon under her feet" sign is seen.
II Thess. 4:17 is talking about the Pre-Trib Rapture. It says, "Then we which are alive and remain shall be CAUGHT UP (harpazo) together with them (the dead in Christ) in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord."
Rev. 12:5 uses the same word, harpazo. It says, "her child was CAUGHT UP (harpazo) unto God, and to his throne." I think the Body of Christ is born into the new world in three steps:
(1) Jesus was caught up to Heaven 40 days after his resurrection.
(2) The wise virgins will be caught up to Heaven in the Pre-Trib Rapture.
(3) The Tribulation saints will be caught up to Heaven in the Pre-Wrath Rapture.
Isaiah 66:7,8,14,15 ties in. It says, "Before she travailed (i.e., not during the Tribulation), she brought forth; before her pain came, she was delivered of a man child (singular, i.e., Jesus, Head of the Body of Christ). Who hath heard such a thing? who hath seen such things? Shall the earth be made to BRING FORTH (i.e., at the Pre-Wrath Rapture) in one day (i.e., Tishri 1, the Day of the Lord)? or shall a nation (Israel) be born at once? for AS SOON AS ZION TRAVAILED, SHE (i.e., Israel, the woman of Rev. 12) BROUGHT FORTH HER CHILDREN" (plural)....and the hand of the LORD (i.e., Jesus Christ) shall be known toward his servants (at the Pre-Wrath Rapture), and his indignation toward his enemies (it's also the Day of God's Wrath). For, behold, the LORD will come with fire, and with his CHARIOTS LIKE A WHIRLWIND, to render his anger with fury, and his rebuke with flames of FIRE."
The "chariots like a whirlwind" remind me of the chariot of fire that carried Elijah up by a whirlwind. I also remember that Daniel's friends were taken up out of the fiery pit unhurt. They were saved out of the fire.
II Kings 2:11 says, "there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and ELIJAH WENT UP BY A WHIRLWIND INTO HEAVEN." Elijah represented the saints that will be caught up to Heaven in the Pre-Wrath Rapture before noon on the Day of the Lord. The Wrath of God will hit Earth at noon.
Zeph. 2:1-5 says, "Gather yourselves together, yea, gather together, O nation not desired (Israel); Before the decree bring forth, before the day pass as the chaff, before the fierce anger of the LORD come upon you, BEFORE THE DAY OF THE LORD'S ANGER COME UPON YOU. Seek ye the LORD, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be HID (i.e., by being raptured) in the day of the LORD's ANGER. For Gaza shall be forsaken, and Ashkelon a desolation: they shall drive out Ashdod at the NOON DAY, and Ekron shall be rooted up. Woe unto the inhabitants of the sea coast"
The asteroid of Rev. 8:8 will hit the Mediterranean Sea at noon on the Day of the Lord. The asteroid of Rev. 8:10 will destroy the city of Babylon (Rev. 18:21). This day will be Tishri 1, the Feast of Trumpets.
Isaiah 7:14 ties in too. It says, "the Lord himself shall give you a SIGN; Behold, a VIRGIN shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall CALL HIS NAME IMMANUEL" ("which being interpreted is, God with us," Mt. 1:23). He was the first of the Body of Christ to be caught up to Heaven.
THE DAY OF THE LORD
Tishri 1, 5771 (starting at 6 PM on Sept. 8, and ending at 6 PM on Sept. 9, 2010), will be the astronomer's New Moon, the conjunction, when the Moon is dark. The Crescent Moon under Virgo's feet will happen on Sept. 12, as the Yoursky chart below shows. Sept. 12, 2010, could be the date of the coming of the great and terrible Day of the Lord, instead of Sept. 9, as the Hebrew calculated calendar in use today tells us.
Joel 2:30-32 says, "I will shew WONDERS (mopheth, miracles) in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood (when small fiery stones begin to fall from the sky at the sixth seal), before (i.e., on the Eve of Trumpets) the great and terrible DAY OF THE LORD come (at the seventh seal, on the Feast of Trumpets). And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered (malat, ESCAPE, i.e., in the Pre-Wrath Rapture): for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call."
Dan. 12:1,2 also ties in with Rev. 12:1-5. Daniel said, "And (continuing the thought in Dan. 11:45) at that time (the Day of God's Wrath when the False Prophet shall come to his end, Dan. 11:45) shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of TROUBLE, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time (the Day of the Lord, Tishri 1, Feast of Trumpets) thy people (Hebrews, like Daniel's friends saved from the fiery furnace) shall be delivered (malat, ESCAPE, i.e., in the Pre-Wrath Rapture), every one that shall be found written in the book. And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake".
THE HEBREW CALENDAR
The Hebrew Calendar of today is calculated by figuring the time since the so-called first new Moon (FNM expression: 0 days, 23 hours, 11 minutes, 06 parts) of 3761 BC, mathematically rather than by sighting the Crescent Moon. It can be several days off. However, the calculated Tishri 1 can fall on the same day the Crescent Moon is seen under her feet. It happened on 9-11, 2000. Compare both pictures below. They are made with different astronomy programs.
The Biblical Basis Of The Sacred Calendar
"TISHRI... MAY FALL LOCALLY ON THE DAY OF THE MOLAD (mean Lunar conjunction, 29 days, 12 hours, and 793 parts) OR ONE OR TWO DAYS AFTER IT".
From BC 7 to BC 1, the astronomical dark New Moon was 2 or 3 days before the Crescent New Moon of Tishri 1.
"Calendar", The Encyclopaedia Judaica Jerusalem, pp. 43-54:
"In the region of Jerusalem...the minimum interval from the true conjunction to the phasis (first crescent) is approx. 18 hours, while the maximum is close to 72 hours".
The ancient Hebrew Calendar was not regulated by the Astronomical New Moon. This was when the Moon was dark and could not be seen. Since the Moon might not be seen over a period of several days, the conjunction was not a reliable benchmark to set New Year Day. Therefore, the calendar was regulated by the first visible sliver of the waxing Crescent New Moon sighted from Jerusalem at twilight. At that time, the Moon would follow the Sun down soon after sunset. There was just a short time that the visual sighting of the Crescent Moon was possible.
The present Hebrew calendar was set by the Sanhedrin president Hillel II about AD 359. He figured the yearly calendar by mathematical calculation from the so-called First New Moon" of 3761, set the leap years in the 3rd, 6th, 8th, 11th, 14th, 17th and 19th years of the 19-year cycle, and added a few postponement rules. I don't knock it. This calendar is amazingly accurate in the long run, but it is not directly transposable to Biblical days.
An Example - Calculating Hebrew Year 5758H
"The time of the Molad of Tishrei 5758H is 2,102,728d 4h 129p (days, hours and parts).
"Dividing the days by 7 leaves a remainder of 5, which means that the Molad of Tishrei 5758H occurs on Thursday.
"None of the dehiyyot (postponements) apply to the Molad of Tishrei 5758H, and so, Rosh Hashannah 5758H begins on Thursday."
The astronomers have done their best to pinpoint the time of ancient Solar/Lunar conjuctions. They have compared and corrected their mathematical calculations from all the available ancient records of visual sightings, even from China. Even so, most of their work is figured according to a mean average, but without it, we would have a hard time figuring out the correct Gregorian date for Tishri 1 in BC years. I thank God for their painstaking work.
Another thing to consider is that visually, there isn't an actual "day" of the dark Moon. In the middle east, the Moon stays concealed anywhere from 1.5 to 3.5 days. Tishri 1 should start that evening when the Crescent Moon is first sighted.
Chronology for the Passovers Associated with the Ministries of Jesus and John the Baptizer, by Murrell G. Selden
"According to Kim Long, who wrote the book called The Moon Book (1988), THE FIRST, VISIBLE CRESCENT MOON (WITH THE CRESCENT OF THE RIGHT) IS GENERALLY SPOTTED TWO OR THREE DAYS AFTER THE ASTRONOMER'S NEW MOON. It is seen by observers as the young crescent moon just after sunset, with the moon following the sun down over the western horizon."
"Calendar", The Encyclopaedia Judaica, Jerusalem, pp. 43-54
"In the region of Jerusalem...the true conjunction will precede the first crescent by 18 to 72 hours."
"New Moon...we have to wait until Sunday and Monday when the Moon has moved a little bit away from the Sun....the Moon will appear as a VERY THIN CRESCENT hanging low on the western horizon. "we call this A 2-DAY OLD MOON," says Lebo, "because it is TWO DAYS PAST NEW." It should be a spectacular sight....the Moon's CRESCENT...AMAZINGLY THIN ".
The Biblical Basis Of The Sacred Calendar
"WHEN THE CRESCENT APPEARS, IT IS ALREADY AT LEAST ONE CALENDAR DAY OLD,1 OR EVEN TWO OR THREE DAYS OLD, 2 as measured from either the true or mean conjunction. A calendar which begins its months with the new crescent will set the "default position" of the first day of the month one day later than a calendar which begins its months with the mean conjunction." Most of our secular calendars list the astronomical New Moon.
"Tishri... may fall locally on the day of the molad (mean Lunar conjunction, 29 days, 12 hours, and 793 parts) OR ONE OR TWO DAYS AFTER IT....THE NEW CRESCENT OF TISHRI CANNOT BE SEEN FROM JERUSALEM LESS THAN 20 HOURS AFTER THE TRUE ASTRONOMICAL CONJUNCTION (or less than six hours after the mean astronomical conjunction, the same in principle as the calculated molad), and then only at sunset. (THE NEW CRESCENT MAY APPEAR AT SUNSET NEARLY 72 HOURS AFTER THE TRUE CONJUNCTION!) Remember, too, the true conjunction can precede Molad Tishri by a maximum of 14 hours or follow it by a maximum of six to seven hours."
CAN WE TRUST "YOURSKY" CHARTS?
To test this, I first looked up Fred Espanek's New Moons at NASA.
I consider his New Moon charts reliable. The entries are the astronomer's New Moon, which is the DARK MOON at the Solar/Lunar conjunction.
To see how they correlated, I fed those dates into the YourSky program at http://fourmilab.ch/cgi-bin/uncgi/Yoursky
IN EVERY CASE during this block from BC 7 to BC 1, the conjunction of the Sun and Moon (the dark Moon) in Yoursky AGREED WITH the astronomer's New Moon in Espanek's charts. This correlation shows me that YOURSKY CAN BE TRUSTED, just as Espanek's New Moon dates for the Solar/Lunar conjuctions can be trusted.
Within 2 or 3 days after the astronomer's New Moon, which is the Solar/Lunar conjunction, the Crescent Moon was UNDER VIRGO'S FEET. I think that day would have been Tishri 1, a day to consider for Jesus' birth.
In the following list, from BC 7 to BC 1, the chart from Yoursky follows the information for that year.
BC 7 (equals -6, since both programs insert a 0 year)
Sept 23, the conjunction, the dark Moon
Sept. 25, THE CRESCENT MOON IS UNDER VIRGO'S FEET (see Yoursky chart below)
Tishri 1 starts at 6 PM on Sept. 25 and ends at 6 PM on Sept. 26.
There is a conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn in Pisces in this chart too.
BC 6 (-5), Sept 13, conjunction, dark Moon
Sept, 15, THE CRESCENT MOON IS UNDER VIRGO'S FEET (see chart below)
Then Tishri 1 started at 6 PM on Sept. 15 and ended at 6 PM on Sept. 16
BC 5 (-4), Sept 1, conjunction, dark Moon, partial SOLAR ECLIPSE, 20:03
Sept. 2, Moon has not reached Spica
Sept. 3, Moon has just passed Spica
Sept 4, THE CRESCENT MOON IS UNDER VIRGO'S FEET at twilight (see chart below)
Then Tishri 1 started at 6 PM on Sept. 4 and ended at 6 PM on Sept. 5.
Saturn (Heaven) is in Aries, which stands for the Lamb of God, perfect for the birth of Jesus.
John 1:36 says, "looking upon Jesus as he walked, he (John the Baptist) saith, Behold the Lamb of God!"
Rev. 5:8,9 says, "...saints. And they (the raptured saints in Heaven after the Pre-Trib Rapture) sung a new song, saying, Thou (the Lamb) art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation".
Jupiter is in Gemini, which stands for the Bridegroom and the Bride of Christ.
Venus is near Regulus, meaning the treading underfoot, in Leo, which stands for the Lion of the tribe of Judah.
The signs are right, so his is a good time for the birth of the Lamb of God who will later on fulfill his role as the Bridegroom and the King of kings.
BC 4 (-3), Sept 20, conjunction, dark Moon
Sept 22, THE CRESCENT MOON IS UNDER VIRGO'S FEET
Then Tishri 1 started at 6 PM on Sept. 22 and ended at 6 PM on Sept. 23.
BC 3 (-2), Sept 9, conjunction, dark Moon
Sept. 10, dark Moon at Spica
Sept. 11, a very slim crescent Moon is not quite to Virgo's feet
Sept .12, THE CRESCENT MOON IS UNDER HER FEET
Tishri 1 may have started at 6 PM on Sept. 11 and ended at 6 PM on Sept. 12, or it could have started at 6 PM on Sept. 12.
Saturn was in Taurus, which speaks of the mighty judgment of God. A star is named Palilicum, belonging to the judge. It's symbol, a boat riding on a circle, reminds us of Noah's Ark upon the globe.
Jupiter was in conjunction with Regulus, meaning the treading underfoot, in Leo, which pictures Jesus as the King of Kings. Another star is Denebola, the Judge or Lord who comes quickly.
Venus was in Virgo, which pictures Jesus as the seed of the woman (Gen. 3:15).
BC 2 (-1), Sept 28, conjunction, dark Moon
Sept. 30, THE CRESCENT MOON IS UNDER VIRGO'S FEET
Then Tishri 1 started at 6 PM on Sept. 30 and ended at 6 PM on Oct 1.
BC 1 (0), Sept 16, conjunction, dark Moon
Sept. 18, THE CRESCENT MOON IS UNDER VIRGO'S FEET
Then Tishri 1 started at 6 PM on Sept. 18 and ended at 6 PM on Sept. 19.
Jupiter is near the Sun; Venus and Mars are near the Moon.
JESUS COMES AS THE FORMER AND LATTER RAIN
The two comings of Christ are as the former and latter rain. Hos. 6:3 says, "the LORD: his going forth is prepared as the morning (i.e., when the Sun of Righteousness arises, Mal. 4:4); and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth."
1. As the former rain: Jesus was born when the Moon was in Virgo with the Sun, He came as the Son, i.e. the Seed of the woman (Gen. 3:15), on Tishri 1.
2. As the Latter rain: Jesus will return when the Moon is in Virgo without the Sun, i.e., on Nisan 1. At that time, he will be the "Sun of righteousness" that shall "arise with healing in his wings" (Mal. 4:2).
Eze. 29:17,21 says, "in the first month, in the first day of the month (i.e., Nisan 1, Eze. 45:18,21), the word of the LORD came unto me...In that day (Nisan 1, day of the Second Advent) will I cause the horn (king) of the house of Israel (Jesus) to bud forth, and I will give thee the opening of the mouth (the Logos, the Word) IN THE MIDST OF THEM, and they shall know that I am the LORD."
MOST LIKELY DATE OF BIRTH OF JESUS:
TISHRI 1, 3757 (OUR SEPT 4/5, BC 5).
In the Hebrew year 3757, Jesus' birth and Herod's death would have taken place about six months apart. When Jesus was born, the Crescent Moon was under Virgo's feet as Tishri 1, 3757 began at 6 PM on Sept. 4, BC 5. If Jesus was born before midnight, it would have been our September 4, BC 5. If after midnight, it would have been Sept. 5, BC 5.
DATE OF HEROD'S DEATH
Herod The Great, The Catholic Encyclopedia
"The death of Herod is important in its relation to the birth of Christ. The eclipse mentioned by Josephus (Ant., XVII, vi, 4), who also gives the length of Herod's reign -- thirty-seven years from the time he was appointed by the Romans, 40 B. C.; or thirty-four from the death of Antigonus, 37 B. C. (Ant., XVII, viii, 1)-- fixes the death of Herod in the spring of 750 A. U. C., or 4 B. C. Christ was born before Herod's death (Matt., ii, 1)"
Astounding New Evidence
"What year, then, did Herod die? Was he still alive in 3 B.C.? Let's notice the evidence. In Peloubet's Bible Dictionary, we read: "Herod died of a terrible disease, at Jericho, in April, 4 B.C., at the age of 69, after a long reign of 37 years" ("Herod," p.252).
"Schurer provides several proofs that it had to be 4 B.C. He writes: "... "Shortly before Herod's death an eclipse of the moon occurred (Ant., xvii, 6, 4). This only corresponds to the year B.C. 4, in which on the night of March 12-13 an eclipse of the moon took place; whereas in the years three and two B.C. in Palestine...generally there was no such phenomenon."
Josephus wrote, "Now it happened, that during the time of the high priesthood of this Matthais, there was another person (i.e., his kinsman Matthais) made high priest for a single day, that very day which the Jews observe as a FAST (i.e., Esther's feast, II Adar 13)....But Herod deprived this Matthais of the high priesthood, and burnt the other Matthias, who had raised the sedition, with his companions, alive. AND THAT VERY NIGHT THERE WAS AN ECLIPSE OF THE MOON" (Ant. XVII. VI. 4). This eclipse of March 13, BC 4, is the only one that could have happened in II Adar in the 385-day Hebrew Leap Year 3757.
The partial Lunar eclipse was at 2:41 AM on March 13, BC 4. Some time after that, Herod had Antipater killed. In Ant. XVII. VIII. 1, Josephus said, "When he (Herod) had done those things, he died, the fifth day after he had caused Antipater to be slain". Herod died between the eclipse of March 13 and the Passover of Nisan 14, April 11, BC 4.
The Fast of Esther fell on II Adar 13, the day before Purim (II Adar 14). The fast is a day observed in commemoration of the 3 days of fasting by Esther, Mordechai and the entire Jewish community before Esther approached king Ahasuerus. The fast begins at the break of dawn and ends after the book of Esther is read that night.
A BC-5 BIRTH AGREES WITH THE TIME OF THE CRUCIFIXION IN 30 AD
Luke 3:1,2 says, "IN THE FIFTEENTH YEAR OF THE REIGN OF TIBERIUS CAESAR, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judaea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of Ituraea and of the region of Trachonitis, and Lysanias the tetrarch of Abilene, Annas and Caiaphas being the high priests, the word of God came unto John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness. And he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins; As it is written in the book of the words of Esaias the prophet, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways shall be made smooth; And all flesh shall see the salvation of God."
Tiberius, the adopted son of Augustus, won his military victory in Illyricum (Germany) in 9 AD. He was made ruler over the military at that time. In 10 AD, he was made CO-HEIR so that when Augustus died, Tiberius wouldn't be rejected as ruler not being of the blood of Augustus. Tiberius started to rule over Judaea as Co-Rex in 12 AD and became Sole-Rex when Augustus died in 14 AD. The fifteenth year of Tiberius' rule over Judaea was 26 AD, the year Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist.
The first Passover of Jesus' ministry was in 27 AD. That was when the temple Herod began in BC 20/19 had been under construction 46 years (John 2:13,20).
The First Passover Of Jesus' Ministry
Excerpt from: Kenneh F. Doig, New Testament Chronology, Chapter 13
"...Josephus...wrote, "now Herod, IN THE EIGHTEENTH YEAR OF HIS REIGN, and after the acts already mentioned, undertook a very great work, that is, to build of himself the temple of God." (Ant. XV 11:1) Josephus also gave the fifteenth year, (Wars I 21:1) which probably refers to the year in which Herod began the rebuilding of the Temple mount, not the Holy of Holies. According to Josephus the eighteenth year from Herod beginning his rule in Jerusalem would have begun Nisan 1, 20 BCE....
The building was commenced in 20-19 BC.
WHY DID HEROD KILL THE BOYS IN BETHLEHEM THAT WERE TWO AND UNDER?
The Star of Bethlehem Was A Comet, By Stephen Lampe
..."Among the books that were candidates for incorporation in the Bible but which were not selected for inclusion is the “Book of James”, also called the “Proto-Evangelium of James” thought to have been written around 150 AD.... It quotes the Magi as saying: “WE SAW HOW AN INDESCRIBABLY GREATER STAR SHONE AMONG THESE STARS, AND DIMMED THEM, SO THAT THEY NO LONGER SHONE; AND SO WE KNEW THAT A KING WAS BORN FOR ISRAEL.” Another ancient mention of the Star of Bethlehem is by Chalcidius, cited by Herbert Vollmann in his book entitled A Gate Opens. Chalcidius was a philosopher who lived in the first half of the fourth century. In his commentary on Plato’s Timaeus, Chalcidius recounted a story according to which “a star was seen, not to threaten man with sickness and death, but to proclaim the descent from Heaven of a sacred deity for the salvation and joy of mankind.” When the Chaldeans, who were learned men and well versed in astronomy, observed this star, they are said to have sought out the new-born “god” immediately, and on finding the kingly child to have paid him the homage befitting only a deity.
"Among the many scholarly studies of the questions connected with the Star of Bethlehem is that of Professor Colin J. Humphreys of Cambridge University....in Volume 32 of the Quarterly Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society under the title “The Star of Bethlehem, A Comet in 5 BC, and the Date of Christ’s Birth”. He points out that the Magi are well known in classical literature as a religious group who were skilled in the observation and interpretation of the stars. In other words, they were astronomers as well as astrologers.
"...there are published Chinese records of astronomical phenomena dating back hundreds of years before the birth of Christ. It is found that there were conjunctions of Saturn and Jupiter three times in 7 BC (in May, October and December)...."
What Year Was Jesus (Yahshua) Born? By Jackson Snyder
"A super nova (exploding star)...was reported in 5 BC (by the Chinese of the Han Dynasty)."
Records also show that shortly after the triple conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter, Mars joined Jupiter and Saturn in the sky so that in February 6 BC the three planets came very close (they were separated by only about eight degrees). ...In the spring of 5 BC a comet blazed forth in the astronomical region Capricornus. Capricornus means horned goat. In ancient times horns symbolized power and often symbolized kings. Professor Humphreys suggests that the remarkable sequence of the triple conjunction in 7 BC, the massing of three planets in 6 BC, and the comet in Capricornus in 5 BC provided a very clear message to the Magi that a very great king was about to be born in Israel.
"Three main characteristics of the Star of Bethlehem are recorded in Matthew: it was a star that had newly appeared; it traveled slowly through the sky; and it “stood over” Bethlehem. Professor Humphreys believes that one, and only one, astronomical object satisfies this description: a comet. He says that the description “stand over” is uniquely applied in ancient literature to refer to a comet....
"Ancient Chinese astronomical records show three comets during the period 20 BC to 10 AD; they are those of 12 BC, 5 BC and 4 BC. These are the possible candidates for the Star of Bethlehem. The comet of 12 BC is the well-known Halley’s Comet, which comes round every 76 years. Biblical evidence and reliable historical facts about Rome and Palestine suggest that Jesus could not have been born as early as 12 BC. Chinese astronomical records give no details of the 4 BC comet (e.g. its duration); therefore, it was probably short-lived and insignificant. It follows that THE COMET OF 5 BC MAY UNIQUELY BE IDENTIFIED AS THE STAR OF BETHLEHEM. The Chinese description of this comet...is consistent with the description in the Gospel according to Matthew.
"The Chinese official record of the 5BC comet includes the following comment: Suin (tailed comets) are the means of eliminating the old and inaugurating the new. Ch'ien niu is the place whence the five planets arise, the origin of calendrical reckoning, the starting point of the three standards (of computation). The appearance of the sui (comet) was a sign of change; the long period of its appearance was due to the importance of the incident (to come)....Ch'ien niu is the area of the sky that includes the constellation Capricornus, sometimes symbolizing power and kings.
"Professor Humphreys theorizes that the Magi recounted to Herod not only the appearance of the comet but also described the significance of the planetary massing in 6 BC and the triple conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn in May, October and December of 7 BC. HEROD, LEAVING NOTHING TO CHANCE, DECIDED TO KILL ALL BOYS BORN SINCE THE FIRST STAGE OF THE TRIPLE CONJUNCTION IN MAY 7 BC, i.e., TWO YEARS PREVIOUSLY."
HOW OLD WAS JESUS WHEN THE MAGI VISITED HIM?
Since Herod died about half a year after Jesus was born, Jesus could not have been two years old when the Wise Men visited him. Sept. 4, BC 5, to March 18, BC 4 was within the same Hebrew year--3757. The extra bright star may have been a super nova, but all the conjunctions plus a comet and nova would have gotten the attention of the Magi. If they saw the nova in March, BC 5, there would have been plenty of time for them to have traveled from Babylon to Jerusalem by Sept. 4, BC 5.
In BC 5, the conjunction would have been on Sept. 1. The visible crescent might have been seen at twilight on Sept. 3, but it was so slim, I missed it on Yoursky's chart at first. If the skies were clear, it would have been seen on Sept. 4.
I THINK JESUS WAS BORN THE NIGHT OF SEPT. 4/5, BC 5. At 6 PM on evening of the Gregorian Sept. 4, BC 5, the actual Tishri 1, 3757, determined by actually sighting the New Crescent Moon, would have begun. Jesus was probably born before midnight, the beginning of the Gregorian Sept. 5. The Gregorian Sept. 4, BC 5, would have been the Julian Sept. 6, BC5. The Julian Day would have been 1719843.5.
Job 38:32 says, "Canst thou bring forth Mazzaroth (the Zodiac) in HIS SEASON? (i.e., when the Sun is in Virgo in Tishri) or canst thou guide Arcturus (Bootes, a Decan of Virgo, representing Jesus as the good shepherd) with his sons?" (the saved in the Greater and Lesser Sheepfolds). Bootes is guarding the Corona with his shepherd's crook to keep the crown from being taken by Serpens (i.e., Satan). The crown is to be given to Christ on the still future Coronation Day, Tishri 1, the Day of God's Wrath, the Day of the LORD that begins the Millennium. Agape
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