The four blood moons theory posits that a very important event, such as the Rapture, could take place in 2014 or 2015 when there will be a tetrad (four consecutive, total lunar eclipses without an intervening partial lunar eclipse).1 Proponents claim that these total lunar eclipses will coincide with major feasts on the Jewish calendar in 2014 and in 2015: Passover and the Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot). Here are the major dates below:
The Next Set of Total Lunar Eclipses
|Eclipse Date||Potential Feast Day|
|April 15, 2014||Passover|
|October 8, 2014||Sukkot|
|April 4, 2015||Passover|
|September 28, 2015||Sukkot|
The significance of this according to proponents is that a tetrad does not coincide with four Jewish feast periods that often (the next time may be over a hundred years from now) and that important events impacting the nation of Israel tend to happen when it does. Proponents tend to link the three most recent tetrads that have coincided with four Jewish feast periods with the expulsion of the Jews from Spain, the creation of the state of Israel, and Israel’s capture of East Jerusalem.
The reason the Rapture is often brought up as the event that could transpire during the time of the next tetrad is that there are verses like Joel 2:30-31 and Acts 2:19-20 that describe the moon turning to blood before the coming of the Lord.
“And I will shew wonders 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, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come.” (Joel 2:30-31)
“And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke: The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come:” (Acts 2:19-20)
In this article I provide my definitive critique of the four blood moons theory.
Rapture Viewpoints & Viability
An individual’s viewpoint on the Rapture’s timing is likely to affect how viable he or she sees the four blood moons theory. One of the biggest assumptions underpinning the theory is that the Rapture can come at any moment. Those who believe in a Mid-Trib, Pre-Wrath, or Post-Trib Rapture are unlikely going to find the four blood moons theory viable because it is simply too late for the Rapture to take place by 2014 or 2015 under these Rapture timing scenarios.
Estimated Rapture Timeframe if the End Times Began on February 11, 2014
|Rapture Viewpoint||Possible Timeframe|
|Pre-Wrath||After July 2017 to 2020|
I don’t think I need to convince supporters of either the Mid-Trib, Pre-Wrath, or Post-Trib Rapture positions that the four blood moons theory is not viable. However, I anticipate that many of those who read this article believe the Rapture can come at any moment-the supporters of the Pre-Trib Rapture position. I write this article mainly for the believers of the Pre-Trib Rapture position with the hope that they do not get caught up in the hype surrounding these total lunar eclipses and understand that those who promote the four blood moons theory are probably not the best people for them to follow.
Non-Scriptural Issues with the Four Blood Moons Theory
One major issue with the four blood moons theory is that the total lunar eclipses will have limited visibility when they occur. For instance, three of the four upcoming total lunar eclipses won’t even be visible to the Middle East (April 15, 2014, October 8, 2014, and April 4, 2015), which you would think is the most important location for the blood moons to be visible. Another issue is that there have been total lunar eclipses on Jewish feast periods several times in the past without anything substantial happening.
A third issue with the theory is that one of the most important tetrads that proponents discuss, the tetrad linked to the creation of the state of Israel, did not actually begin until after the event had transpired. The creation of the state of Israel occurred in May 1948 while the first total lunar eclipse of the tetrad did not begin until April 1949. This fact undermines the idea that tetrads are meant to be a divine warning sign since a warning sign is supposed to occur before an event transpires-not after an event transpires. The heavenly signs described in Joel and in Acts are warning signs before something transpires.
The biggest issue of contention I have with this theory from a non-scriptural perspective is that not every total lunar eclipse of this upcoming tetrad will occur during a Jewish feast at the locations where it likely matters the most.
- The Jewish feast of Sukkot will begin at sunset on October 8, 2014. Coincidentally, there will be a total lunar eclipse on October 8, 2014. However, the total lunar eclipse on October 8, 2014 will begin and conclude hours before sunset in most parts of the world, including in the Mideast. According to NASA, the total lunar eclipse will begin around 10:25 AM UTC on October 8 or 12:25 PM local time in Israel and last for nearly a hour (let’s not forget that those in Middle East won’t even be able to see the total lunar eclipse when it does take place). Thus, the total lunar eclipse that theorists link to Sukkot in 2014 will be completed before Sukkot begins in Israel. In addition, the total lunar eclipse will be completed before Sukkot in the time zones west of Israel, including the time zones that encompass Europe and the United States.
You can read about additional non-scriptural shortcomings of the theory at the following link.
A Major Scriptural Issue with the Four Blood Moons Theory
The main flaw for the four blood moons theory is scriptural in nature. There are multiple ways to refute the theory using scripture, but for sake of brevity I will focus on perhaps the easiest way for someone to follow regardless of which Rapture position they ascribe to. Matthew 24:29 and Joel 2:30-31 are among two of the most cited verses by the teachers of the four blood moons theory. These verses describe the signs in the heavens, including a darkening sun and moon.
|Common Verses Cited By Four Blood Moons Theorists|
|The Sun Darkens||The Moon Changes Color|
|Matthew: 24:29: “Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:”|
|Joel 2:30-31: “And I will shew wonders 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, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come.”|
Matthew 24:29 states that the changes in the moon will occur “immediately after the tribulation”. The reference to the “tribulation” here is the great tribulation as Christ had just described what the persecution of people will be like during the great tribulation in Matthew 24:21-28.
“(21) For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. (22) And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened. (23) Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. (24) For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. (25) Behold, I have told you before. (26) Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not. (27) For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. (28) For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together. (29) Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:” (Matthew 24:21-29)
Thus, the great tribulation will need to conclude no later than 2014 or 2015 for any one of the four upcoming blood moons to be associated with Matthew 24:29 and Joel 2:30-31. In addition, the abomination of desolation will need to be established no later than 2014 or 2015 since the establishment of the abomination of desolation will lead into the great tribulation.
(15) When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) (16) Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains: (17) Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house: (18) Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes. (19) And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! (20) But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day: (21) For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.” (Matthew 24:15-21)
The problem with expecting both of these developments, particularly the great tribulation, by 2014 or 2015 is that the seventieth week of Daniel (the seven year period that many people call the “tribulation”) would need to have begun a few years ago since the abomination of desolation is prophesied to be established in the midst of the seventieth week of Daniel or three and half years after it begins (Daniel 9:27).
|The Abomination of Desolation Is Established at the Midway Point of the 70th Week of Daniel|
|Daniel 9:27: “And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.”|
|Matthew 24:15: “When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)”|
The seventieth week of Daniel has not begun yet as no “covenant with many” has been confirmed, so how can we possibly see the abomination of desolation, the great tribulation, or the blood moon associated with Matthew 24:29 and Joel 2:30-31 in either 2014 or 2015?
The teachers of the four blood moons theory demonstrate a lack of Bible prophecy understanding. They have taken verses completely out of context to push a theory which has a lot of flaws even without taking scripture into account. The citation of Matthew 24:29 to support the theory is the most egregious example of taking a verse out of context as Christ specified that several events will occur before the appearance of the changed moon.
- I actually watched a video sermon series featuring a very prominent Bible prophecy commentator teaching this theory and it was awful. I’m not nearly as articulate or as charismatic as this Bible prophecy commentator is but he made so many contradictory statements and presented ideas that had no scriptural support that I wished I could have been in the audience to challenge him to a debate.
It’s unfortunate that so many people have bought into this theory and have given their money to those who endorse it (at the time of this writing one particular book endorsing the four blood moons theory is one of the most popular selling books across any genre). The fact that so many people have bought into this theory is evidence that not a lot of people currently have a solid understanding of Bible prophecy. I don’t claim to be the most knowledgeable Bible prophecy commentator around today, but it does not take much scriptural research to see how scripturally flawed the four blood moons theory is. If you see a Bible prophecy commentator promote this theory you probably should not look to them for your Bible prophecy information.
- It is worth noting that John Hagee and Mark Blitz, two prominent proponents of this theory, never explicitly predict that the Rapture will take place within the 2014-2015 time period. However, I believe it is fair to say that they strongly suggest that the Rapture could take place during that time (why else make such a big deal about this?).