Many see “crucifixion moon” this week

Yuck.  I can’t leave my most recent post as the most recent post anymore.  It seems too distasteful.  (Did I say that?)  So, on to astronomy news!

Many of you around the world (not here, sadly) got to see a “crucifixion moon” this week!  Some of the pictures have been stunning.

I call them crucifixion moons because our understanding of the timing of Christ’s crucifixion (April of 31AD) has such a blood red moon appearing the very night after His death.  This, in combination with the unnatural darkness that covered the land at midday (Matt. 27:45, Mark 15:33, Luke 23:44-45) and the powerful earthquake (Matt. 27:54, Mark 15:38, Luke 23:45), would have made Peter’s words to the crowds on the following Pentecost cause hairs to stand up on the backs of necks:

But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:

“And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God,
That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh;
Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
Your young men shall see visions,
Your old men shall dream dreams.
And on My menservants and on My maidservants
I will pour out My Spirit in those days;
And they shall prophesy.
I will show wonders in heaven above
And signs in the earth beneath:
Blood and fire and vapor of smoke.
The sun shall be turned into darkness,
And the moon into blood,
Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the LORD.
And it shall come to pass
That whoever calls on the name of the LORD
Shall be saved.”

(Acts 2:16-21)

For those of you who (like me) did not get to see it, here are a couple of articles with pictures:

These signs in 31AD were only the prefiguring of the great signs to come (Rev. 6:12-17).  (If you haven’t, get the booklet!)

12 thoughts on “Many see “crucifixion moon” this week

  1. Actually, uh, no. They didn’t see on June 15th a “blood-red moon” as they did on Wednesday, April 25, 31 AD high over Jerusalem. They saw a total lunar eclipse this week. The eclipse in 31 AD was partial – and only a very special degree of partiality will create a “blood-red moon”. Total eclipses pass in and out of that partial state, but totality is much darker.

    http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/OH/OH2011.html#LE2011Jun15T

    There is a book written by one of our members (now deceased) who looked up the astronomical literature on the subject. A “blood-red moon” can only occur naturally when the moon is partially eclipsed, and then only to a particular degree. Here for comparison is the lunar eclipse of April 25, 31 AD (look how little by comparison it enters the inner circle of full shadow, the penumbra):

    By comparison, total lunar eclipses are too dark to be “blood-red”, save at their beginning and ending. We shall see what that implies about prophetic fulfillment…

  2. OK, was it exactly the same sort of eclipse as in April 31AD? No. Was it a visible phenomenon with the same cause — that is, a red moon caused by light passing through the earth’s atmosphere illuminating the moon? Yes. So, since I’m coining the term “crucifixion moon,” I get to define it however I like. (The power of the dictionary!) “Blood red” is subjective as far as I’m concerned, so I hereby include a broad enough definition of it to make it a valid adjective in my definition of “crucifixion moon.” (Again, dictionary power! It’s going to my head, I tell you!)

    Besides, defining a “crucifixion moon” to mean something too narrow certainly removes the practical impact I seek in the use of the phrase by making too infrequently usable the conversation starter: “Ooooo, look – a crucifixion moon!” 🙂

    So, to deny me the use of it, you will have to appeal to those authorizing my personal dictionary. It might be a while before you get a response, since they only read the letters of appeal they receive every blue moon…

  3. Someone beat you to the dictionary, though, Mr. Smith. 🙂 Not me. If memory serves it was a French astronomer that did the basic research. In any case I have the bona fides and your Usage Panel (Thee, Thyself and Thou) can revise the dictionary entry, or not. 😀 (Mr. Ames gave me a copy of the book and I should be able to scan and then convert the pages to PDF for you. Not immediately though, I have other fish to fry…)

  4. Lisa Lord

    Hello Mr. Smith! Yes, I saw the “blood red moon” that you mentioned! (For those of us that live in North America, it was visible online via the SLOOH space camera website live online feed with a choice of South Africa, Cyprus, or Dubai.) It looked red to me on my computer during certain portions of the eclipse (I missed the first hour) but I later found out that the volcanic dust from the eruption in Chili was causing the moon to look red! So, again, yes, I saw the red moon and actually thought there was something wrong with my computer and went to check it again on my 10-year old daughter’s ipad (she won it as a prize). Thanks for the biblical insight! You have my support!

  5. Mr. Wheeler, I’m not sure I’ve been clear: If so, please photocopy the dictionary page that defines the exact term “crucifixion moon.” I’ll take any standard dictionary of credibility. (The point: I’m not disputing the type of eclipse that happened on that NTBMO, so astronomical texts, French or not, won’t help. 🙂 )

  6. Thank you , Lisa Lord! However, I think I read that the idea that the volcano ash caused the redness is a myth. I wish I had known ahead of time, I would have checked it out electronically like you did! 🙂

  7. I’ll see what I can do – but we may be miscommunicating on more than one level. 🙂 My response was partly humorous in the first place. I don’t even know whether there is a valid term, already extant, as “crucificixion moon” – only the claim that (barring alleged causes such as volcanic eruptions) only a certain kind of lunar eclipse can be a “blood-red moon” or “blood moon”. Now those terms have some currency and one or both of us should be able to track such down (e.g., in certain WorldNetDaily articles). But what I was saying is that, if only a certain kind of eclipse can truly be a “blood-red moon” by definition, then only such (the very kind we had in 31 AD) could rightly be called a “crucifixion moon”.

    Anyway, please bear with me and with whatever I dig up, and judge for yourself what to do with it. It was never my intention to “strive over words” here.

    Besides, doesn’t volcanic ash cause blue moons rather than red ones, as in this buttonized photograph (assuming my link works)?

    (“Blue moons” of the normal sort, of course, are another thing entirely…)

  8. Nope – the official (according to my dictionary) definition of a “crucifixion moon” is: “A red moon.” So I think I’ve got it covered! The etymology note at the end of the definition simply reads, “Wallace Smith coined the term because red moons are reminiscent of the prophecy-fulfilling red moon that occurred the evening after Jesus Christ’s crucifixion, even though not all red moons–of whatever shade–are made under the exact same circumstances.” So, appeal denied! 🙂

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