“Since history has been recorded we have had records of how humans have divined alleged prophetic truths from events that occur in the heavens”—J.P. Holding
Publisher: Tekton Apologetics (March 23, 2014 AD)
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Having not come from a Christian background, not even close actually, I missed a lot of the tomfoolery which has occurred down the years within Christians circles. Then, after having been a Christian for about 5 minutes, I was already sick of newspaper theology. While we are to be aware of our times and Bible prophecy; the problem is attempting to force the headlines into the Bible and visa versa.
This goes for the professional prognosticator who have predicted the world’s end multitudinous times to the lady at the bus stop who asked if I believed that we are in the last days. Well, yes, of course, as the Apostle Paul refers to the last days already being upon us 2,000 years ago.
Of course, coming from a Jewish background, I knew that the last days, end times, eschaton is simply the time from the Messiah’s appearance to the time of the end of the world. And that time can, as it has been, a long, long time. Ah, but when you point out Paul’s statements and the meaning then people say, “But do you believe we are at the very last days of the end times” oi vey!
The most recent wage of prognostication we had was 2012 AD and we now have many authors who are revising, updating and republishing books…so as to scrub out all the signs of the clues and calculation they made pointing to 2012 AD as the year in which _______________ (fill in the blank with what have you; world’s end, Jesus’ return, anti-Christ’s rule, etc.).
Well, the current craze is the blood moons thus, J.P. Holding’s consideration of the subject in the book Blood Moons Lunacy. J. P. Holding heads Tekton - Education and Apologetics Ministries and produces research pertaining to apologetics, polemics and much else.
The chapter headings are:
Chapter 1 Prior Patterns: The Ghosts of Blood Moons Past
Chapter 2 The Exegetical Eclipse
Chapter 3 Failures of Hagee Past
Chapter 4 Mark Biltz
The book focuses upon John Hagee, though not exclusively. Since Hagee is very well known, promulgates the blood moon issues and has a history of prophetic statements behind him; he seems like a good representative of the issue.
The book focuses upon John Hagee (pastor of San Antonio’s Cornerstone Church), though not exclusively. Since Hagee is very well known, promulgates the blood moon issues and has a history of prophetic statements behind him; he seems like a good representative of the issue.
J.P. Holding refers to Hagee as being, “chief among those who say that God Himself has ordained an impending series of eclipses, in order to warn us of the impending end to all things.”
Others who are mentioned are Edgar Whisenant of 88 Reasons Why the Rapture Is In 1988 infamy. Robert Faid who “predicted that Mikhail Gorbachev would emerge as the Antichrist.” Harold Camping, need we say more? These are examples of “Prophecy writers [who] never seem to learn from their mistakes. Nor, it seems, do Christian readers learn much from them.” Sadly, some such folks are like the weatherman on your local news (or, am I supposed to say non-gender specific weather personage?). Sure, they are wrong 99.9% of the time but, after all, it is their job. When you build a reputation (good, bad or ugly) and career on being a prophetic prognosticator you have to never look back and just keep on going forwards. Actually, if you have any Christian integrity; you repent.
Of course, even an broken clock is right twice per day so, maybe they are on to something, this time.
So, what is the issue about blood moons, solar eclipses, etc.? The concept is that of a “combination of eclipses, timed with Jewish festivals” which have been previously “linked to significant events in the history of the people of Israel” and thus, which should lead us to “soon expect something else significant to happen specifically concerning Israel, in 2014-2015.” Moreover, “lunar eclipses are meant to be signs to the people of Israel; solar eclipses are a sign to the world at large.”
A key term associated with this issue is Tetrad, about which Holding notes:
“We should point out that technically, ‘Tetrad’ refers only to the four red moons, and excludes the single black sun in their midst. The prefix ‘tetra-’ refers to four of something, and Hagee’s thesis is based on the occurrence of five eclipse events, not four. To that extent, Tetrad can be a misleading term to use in this context. However, for convenience and ease of reference, we’ll continue to echo Hagee and use Tetrad as a shorthand reference to the collation of all four red moons and the single black sun within the same 18 month period.”
J.P. Holding notes that it is “unusual to have a Tetrad of lunar eclipses, and rarer still to have them on Jewish holidays, and rarer yet to have them all occur combined with a solar eclipse” so there must be something to it—right?
Chapter one focuses on a review of tetrads past:
Tetrad Past #1: 162-163 AD
Tetrad Past #2: 795-796 AD
Tetrad Past #3: 842-843 AD
Tetrad Past #4: 860-861 AD
Tetrad Past #5: 1492-1493 AD
Of interest is that:
“According to the Jewish historian Josephus, the destruction of the Jewish Temple in 70 AD was marked by certain heavenly signs.”
Moreover, as J.P. Holding puts it:
“God is the master of His creation, and so we do not question Hagee’s supposition that God could use eclipses as messages to mankind. We also do not question his claim that the Star of Bethlehem may have been one such sign.”
“In a video presentation of his theory, during a sermon at his church, he says that the eclipses will be ‘seen collectively by the world.’”
This results in an interesting consideration of from where the various heavenly signs were seen; geographically speaking.
Also of note is Mark Biltz whom “Hagee acknowledges as his inspiration” and who “uses graphics from the NASA eclipse website” to elucidate the issue.
Blood Moons Lunacy is very interesting on various levels such as history, astronomy, prophecy, etc. and well worth reading.
See our previous reviews of J.P. Holding’s books:
Here is a list of J.P. Holding’s books:
Was Hitler a Christian? Was Nazi Germany a "Christian nation"?
The ultimate resource for debunking the claim that Jesus didn't even exist! Takes on writers like Earl Doherty, G. A. Wells, Acharya S, and many more!
Was the information in the New Testament transmitted reliably? Looks at oral transmission, textual transmission, authorship issues, and the canon.
Our full-orbed historical defense. Looks at all the usual theories (swoon, stolen body, etc.) and makes a positive apologetic for the Resurrection.
A "food for thought" version of arguments in Defending the Resurrection.
Analysis of Mormon truth claims related to the Bible, and how Mormon apologists use it.
Is hell really literal, fiery torture? A fresh look at hell from a social-contextual perspective.
The moral teachings of the New Testament distilled and applied for today.
A fresh look at the doctrine of the atonement from a first century perspective.
A response to the "Know Your Enemy" e-book and video series by Mark Fairley.
An intelligent alternative to those "other" cartoon tracts.
Do you have questions about Christianity? Or do you know someone who does? And are you having a hard time finding answers that are easy to understand?
Christian Answers to This Generation's Questions gives easy to understand answers to more than 50 common questions asked about Christianity, whether by seekers or young people. With recommendations for further reading included, this collection of Q and A is a great place to get started on your spiritual journey.