Blood Moons & the Biblical Context of Time

Blood-MoonLong after the critics of Mark Biltz’s book, Blood Moons have been forgotten, like it or not, the premise of his book will be changing how people view the Bible’s reckoning of “time”. To be sure Biltz was not the first to show the religious calendar of the Bible must be understood within its Biblical context but it was his research that was the catalyst which raised awareness of the subject to the point where it can no longer be ignored.

In his book, Mark Biltz shows that our Creator, YHWH, authored “divine appointments” which he codified in the religious calendar given to Israel. Mr. Biltz demonstrated the early church’s belief that several of these divine appointments were fulfilled in Yeshua’s (Jesus’) death and resurrection. He went on to make a strong case for a future fulfillment of those Biblical holy days in events related to the 2nd coming of Yeshua. Now I have read Biltz’s book on the Blood Moons and contrary to the assertions of some, he has not claimed the blood moons are a specific sign of the 2nd coming of Christ in 2014/2015.

A Reminder of the Context of Biblical Time
What Mr. Biltz does claim is the blood moons are an important reminder to our generation that we should understand how our Creator reckons time.  For those willing to listen, the blood moons remind us that the Biblical calendar is based upon both the cycles of the sun and moon. It is this lunar/solar interaction which makes our Creator’s calendar so unique. Let me tell you why I believe Biltz’s premise concerning a Biblical calendar is controversial to so many. Simply put, it represents a fundamental shift in how we view Biblical “time”. I’ll try to explain.

A Cosmic Rolex
If you pulled back the cover on your expensive wrist watch you’ll find different sized gears which allow your watch to keep track of seconds, minutes, days, weeks, months, and years. Each gear is a specific size which allows it to precisely measure “time”. Our Creator’s watch works the same way only His gears are the Sun, Moon, Earth and Stars. This cosmic Rolex, if you will, measures time according to a standard He set in motion at creation. (Gen. 1:14)

Our Earth in its orbit around the sun is the gear which gives us our year of 365.24 days. The moon is the gear which gives us a month of 29.53 days. The rotation of the earth is the gear which gives us our day of 24 hours. Here is what makes the Biblical calendar extraordinary. 12 lunar cycles (months) of 29.53 days equals 354.36 days. This makes the Biblical lunar/solar “year” about 11 days shorter than each solar year of 365.24 days. If the Biblical calendar was not corrected every few years the months would “wander” causing them to move through the seasons. A good example of this type of wandering calendar is the lunar calendar of Islam. 

A Biblical View of Time Synchronizing the Bible’s Calendar
If Nisan (the 1st Biblical month beginning in March or April) was not fixed to the solar/agricultural cycle it would continue to move 11 days away from its starting point every year.  In only eighteen years time Nisan would be celebrated in the fall. YHWH in his infinite wisdom did not intend for this to happen so when Israel left Egypt He instructed Moses to begin each new year in the month of the “Abib”. Abib is a term for barley when it is forming its ears of grain.  Not to get lost in details but by linking the Biblical calendar to the solar/agricultural cycle of Abib, YHWH provided the Israelites a practical means to synchronize the lunar cycle of 29.53 days with the solar year of 365.24 days, thus preventing it from wandering in the solar cycle. In practical terms this synchronization was accomplished by adding a 13th month approximately every 3 years. In modern terms we call this an intercalation. (For a Biblical example see my article Ezekiel’s 13th Month)

Here is another way to look at it: The Biblical calendar can be divided into two parts. One part, as it relates to mankind’s day to day activity, is governed by the rising and setting of the sun. According to the Biblical example (first set by YHWH at creation) this day to day cycle is also grouped into 6 days of labor and 1 day of rest. The other part of the Biblical calendar, as Mark Biltz demonstrates in his book Blood Moons, is governed by the cycle of the moon.  Specific days in these lunar months are designated as “divine appointments”.

When we look up into the night sky after a hard days work the lunar cycle is there to remind us of our Creator’s plan of reconciliation for all mankind through Yeshua. In the first month on Passover, Yeshua became the “lamb of God which takes away the sins of the world.” Not many days later he rose from the grave and became, “the firstfruits” of them that slept.

If YHWH had not fixed the Biblical calendar to the solar/agricultural cycle Yeshua would not have fulfilled these Divine appointments. If you’ve read my book The 13th Enumeration: Key to the Bible’s Messianic Symbolism, then you know it is no accident that lunar/solar cycles of the Biblical calendar are reconciled by a 13th month. This 13th month is the bridge which connects the side of the Biblical calendar which governs mankind’s struggle to survive under the curse of sin, with the side of the calendar which offers hope through the promised Redeemer. For many today, Biltz’s book Blood Moons is an uncomfortable reminder that our way of looking at “time” has wandered from its Biblical foundations.

Bible Prophecy and Biblical Time
Think of the implications this has for how we understand many of the prophetic passages in the Scripture. Have you ever wondered why the prophecies in the book of Daniel and the book of Revelation do not use the term “years” to designate the shorter time frames? It makes perfect sense if you realize the Biblical calendar “year” varies between 12 & 13 months. Remember years in a Biblical sense are based upon a certain number of lunar cycles of 29.53 days.

Those lunar cycles are then recalibrated every few years to synchronize them with the solar/agricultural cycle. This explains why a 7 “year” or a 3.5 “year” tribulation period is never specifically mentioned in relation to the prophecies of the Bible. A “year” in the strictest Biblical sense is not 365.24 days but rather 12 or 13 lunar cycles (months). This is the reason the books of Daniel and Revelation so often use days and months instead of “years” to described specific end time events.

So next time you’re reading a prophetic passage in the Scripture consider it in terms of our Creator’s calendar, you might be surprised at the insights you find. No matter what you believe about the Blood Moons they are, at the very least, a spectacular reminder for us to look at Biblical “time” in terms of our Creator’s calendar, not a poor man-made imitation.

In the words of king David:  

 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.  2 Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge.  3 There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. 4 Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun, 5 Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoiceth as a strong man to run a race.  6 His going forth is from the end of the heaven, and his circuit unto the ends of it: and there is nothing hid from the heat thereof. Psalm 19:1-6

Digging Deeper
For those Berean’s interested in digging into this further the following chart shows the prophecies of Daniel & Revelation using a Biblical reckoning of time.

    (Click on image to enlarge)Bible Prophecy - Biblical Time

 

Blood Moons and Bible Chronology
So is there some actual chronological significance to the Blood Moons? Personally, I don’t believe the chronology of the Bible supports the idea that the “blood moons” of 2014/2015 will see the rapture of the church, the start of the “great tribulation”, or the 2nd Coming of Yeshua as a few people are speculating. I also do not agree with those who are saying these events have no importance at all. As I will explain shortly the “blood moons” of 2014/2015 come at a very significant point in Bible chronology. So while many are questioning the significance of these events lets take a step back and look at them in the context of a panoramic view of Biblical history.

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The Jubilee Code
Regular readers of my b41_Jubilees_Cycleslog know that I love to dig into the details of Biblical history and chronology. Over the years I have found the chronology of the Bible brings wonderful context as well as rich symbolism to many of the events recorded, especially those events related to the reconciliation of mankind to our Creator through the sacrifice of Yeshua.

41 Jubilee Cycles
In a recent article on the Jubilee Code I explained how the 41 generations from Abraham to Yeshua (Matt. 1) actually equaled 41 Jubilee cycles. Further, if you go back in time you’ll find the span of time from Abraham to Adam also equaled 41 Jubilee cycles. Based upon this and other evidence I became convinced that the lineage of Yeshua in Matthew 1 was written as a type of chronological keystone.

A Biblical Epic
Of particular interest to our present generation is that in the fall of 1979 the 123rd Jubilee cycle from Adam began (41+41+41). This means that we a currently living in the 41st Jubilee cycle from Yeshua.

Significantly the 123rd Jubilee also marks the end of another important epic in Biblical history. According to a reasonable (and defensible) rendering of Old Testament chronology, the birth of Isaac took place on the 43rd Jubilee from Adam. This set time or “mow’ed”, as it was called in the Scripture, began a Biblical epic which was typified by atonement sacrifice and YHWH’s dealings with Abraham’s seed.  During this 43rd Jubilee YHWH tested Abraham’s faith by asking him to sacrifice his son. Genesis 22 gives us a beautiful testimony of Abraham’s faith as well as prophetic picture of Yeshua’s future atonement:

Genesis 22:2-8 And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.  And Abraham rose up early in the morning,…Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off.  And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you,…. And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?  And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering:….

40_Jubilee_Cycles 39 & 40 Jubilee Cycles
39 (13×3) Jubilee cycles later YHWH did indeed provided “himself” a lamb when Yeshua died for our sins. Then in 69 AD, the following Jubilee cycle (40th), the last atonement sacrifice was offered in the temple at Jerusalem. The following year on the 9th of Av the temple was destroyed, thus beginning the exile of the Jewish people. Jesus, in Luke 21 predicted this destruction of the temple and the scattering of the Jewish people.  When asked by his disciples, when the destruction of the temple would take place he gave (in part) this answer:

Luke 21:24-28   24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.  25 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.  27 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.  28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.

It can be argued, reasonably so I might add, that 70 AD did indeed see the destruction of the temple and the dispersion of the Jewish people into “all nations” as prophesied by Yeshua. In fact it was only in the first part of the 20th century that a mandate was given which set in motion the return of the Jewish people to their ancient land.Then in 1948 the nation of Israel was reborn in fulfillment of numerous prophecies in the Bible.  Though Israel recaptured and untied Jerusalem in 1967, parts of this ancient city are still under “gentile” control.

Israel and the Jubilee Cycles
This brings me back to the present. Today we are living in the 40th jubilee cycle from the destruction of Jerusalem and that last fateful atonement sacrifice. I believe a reasonable argument can be made that the past 40 Jubilee cycles are what Yeshua described as the “times of the Gentiles”. This epic will soon be drawing to a close. To me it is fascinating to note that the 39th Jubilee cycle from Isaac saw the birth of Yeshua. The 40th Jubilee saw his death, resurrection, the destruction of Jerusalem, the end of the sacrificial system and the birth of the “church age”.

39 Jubilee cycles into the “church age” the nation of Israel has once again been reborn and we find YHWH again dealing with the Jewish people, bringing them back to the land He promised to Abraham. As the 40th Jubilee winds down it becomes apparent that we are in another period of transition. Great changes are afoot as YHWH prepares mankind for the return of Yeshua and His millennial reign from Jerusalem. Before I talk about the “blood moons” and the year 2014/2015 as it relates to the Jubilee and Sabbath cycles I would like to look at a couple of more symbolic themes which I believe add credibility to the Biblical epics I’ve been describing.

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40 and the Bread of Heaven
After Israel left Egypt they wandered in the wilderness for 40 years before “crossing over” into the Promised Land under the leadership of Yeshua (Joshua son of Nun).
For those who may not know the name Jesus/Joshua/Yeshua are all variations on the same name which means Salvation of YA.
During those 40 years of wandering, Israel was given manna to eat. In John 6, Yeshua compared the manna in the wilderness with himself as the “Bread of Life” or “Living” bread. Later the apostle Paul connects the symbolism of Yeshua and “bread” with the expectancy of His 2nd Coming.  

John 6:47-58  47 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.  48 I am that bread of life.  49 Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead.  50 This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die.  51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven: …..  58 This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.

1 Corinthians 11:23-26  That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:  24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me……  26 For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come.

For 40 years the Children of Israel ate manna in the wilderness before they crossed over into the Promised Land. For the past 40 Jubilees mankind has been given the opportunity to eat the “living” bread of heaven.

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40 Weeks, 40 Jubilees, and the Birth Pangs
The last theme I want to look at is one that is often mentioned when discussing eschatology. In Matthew 24, Yeshua, when describing the events which transpire between the destruction of the temple and His return, explains them in terms of a woman’s birth pangs. I believe a good case can be made that this symbolism may have a near and far fulfillment. In terms of human biology a full term pregnancy last 40 weeks. Yeshua’s death and resurrection took place in 30 AD and Jerusalem fell 40 years later. A reasonable case can be made that the events of 70 AD were a partial fulfillment of Yeshua’s words in Matthew 24. Clearly Yeshua did not literally return at that time so He must have been speaking of another time as well. A period of 40 Jubilees may well fit the pattern. If this is the case then a little speculative math may give us some insights into this final period time.

If 40 weeks = 40 Jubilees
1 week = 49 years.
Each day of “labor” = 7 years.

 1 Thessalonians 5:1-4  1 But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.  2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.  3 For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.  4 But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.

Mark 13:4-8  4 Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign when all these things shall be fulfilled?  5 And Jesus answering them began to say, Take heed lest any man deceive you:  6 For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.  7 And when ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars, be ye not troubled: for such things must needs be; but the end shall not be yet.  8 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be earthquakes in divers places, and there shall be famines and troubles: these are the beginnings of sorrows (birth pangs).

Matthew 24:4-8  4 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.  5 For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.  6 And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.  7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.  8 All these are the beginning of sorrows (birth pangs).

Blood Moons of 2014/2015
So what does this have to do with the “blood moons” in 2014/2015? Based upon the Jubilee cycles as described above the autumn of 2013 – 2014 ends the 5th Sabbath cycle of the 40th Jubilee from the destruction of Jerusalem. (Each Jubilee has 7 cycles of 7 years.) The fall of 2014 begins the final two Sabbath cycles of this 40th Jubilee as well as the 123rd Jubilee from Adam. If there is any validity to the symbolism of birth pangs and 40 Jubilees cycles, then the next two Sabbath cycles (14 years) should see some incredible events as they related to Bible prophecy. It’s also worth noting that Joseph’s 7 years of plenty and 7 years of famine fell in the final two years of the 47th Jubilee cycle. (see chronology chart below for more details.)

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In summary then I do not believe the “blood moons” indicate any specific immediate event but based upon a larger chronological context they may well represent the beginning of the end for several very important Biblical epics.

For those who would like to look at the underlying chronological information that was described above please see the excerpted chart below or download the full free (PDF) chart here: Chronology of the Old Testament. The excerpted chart is best understood in the context of the full PDF. Please do your own due diligence as Bereans.

The image below can be enlarged by clicking on it.

1979-2015 Sabbath_Jubilee Authors Note: The information developed in this article is based upon over twenty years of research. The chronology involved took two years to complete in charted form. For those who would like to see the Biblical basis for the chronology as described above you will find a PDF chart of chronology here: Chronology of the Old Testament.  Please note this chronology is based upon the Old Testament MT text of the Scriptures. Though this chart itself is solely my own effort I often turned to some of the great chronologists of the past and present to try and work out the chronology of the Kings of Israel and Judah. I’ve appreciatively walked in the footsteps of the following giants of Biblical chronology: Ussher, Rawlinson, Newton, Rutherford, Davidson, and Jones. Please do your own due diligence as a Berean. Please note that the dates in this article should be understood within the context of the Jubilee & Sabbath cycles given. The dates are not a prediction of the “Rapture” or the 2nd coming of Yeshua.

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13 & 14 and the Blood Moons
On a related note, for those who read my new book The 13th Enumeration: Key to the Bible’s Messianic Symbolism, it is fascinating to see that the “blood moons” fall on the 6013/14 year from Adam.  As decribed in my book the numbers 13 & 14 are woven into the very fabric of the Bible’s Messianic symbolism. If you would like to learn more about 13 & 14 and the Bible’s Messianic symbolism I encourage you download a free copy of my book. Subscribers to my blog will receive a free digital copy. If you prefer to purchase a copy please see my Amazon author page here: William Struse

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