Is the coming full solar eclipse just a fun thing to watch, or is it a warning from God? That's the question some Bible scholars have been weighing as this unique eclipse is about to happen on August 21st. It is the first of its kind to be seen within America since 1257. During the eclipse, the sky will be darkened and temperatures will drop, as the sun will be completely hidden behind the moon.
Many are traveling to the states in which it can be seen (from Oregon to South Carolina), and others are throwing viewing parties. But Billy Graham's daughter, Anne Graham Lotz, just wrote a blog warning people that it may not be cause for casual celebration. In fact, she compared such partying to those in Babylon.
"The celebratory nature regarding the eclipse brings to my mind the Babylonian King Belshazzar who threw a drunken feast the night the Medes and Persians crept under the city gate. While Belshazzar and his friends partied, they were oblivious to the impending danger. Belshazzar wound up dead the next day, and the Babylonian empire was destroyed," Lotz writes.
Lotz believes that the eclipse is most likely a warning from God, though she is not sure what exactly He will communicate. "Jewish rabbis have historically viewed solar eclipses as warnings from God to Gentile nations. Therefore, my perspective on the upcoming phenomenon is not celebratory. While no one can know for sure if judgment is coming on America, it does seem that God is signaling us about something. Time will tell what that something is."
She points to this pastor's video. He believes strongly that this eclipse is a strong sign from God to wake up the American church. Lotz says, "Please view the following video posted by Australian pastor Steve Cioccolanti. Pastor Steve articulates the warning in a very clear, undeniable, yet undogmatic way based on his understanding of Biblical truth."
Lotz ends her warning with the balance of God's forgiving and merciful heart. "Please be assured that balancing God’s warning is His plea for us to return to Him and rend our hearts in sincere, heartfelt repentance," she writes. "I can almost hear the tears in Joel’s voice as he pleads for us to repent and return to God, because 'Who knows? He may return and have pity and leave behind a blessing.' (Joel 2:13-14)"
Lotz finishes her blog saying, "Regardless of whether or not the conjecture regarding America’s Eclipse is accurate, we know our nation and our world is in turmoil. Without doubt this is the time for God’s people to get right with God. To repent of our own sin. To share the Gospel with our neighbors. And to pray that in the midst of His coming wrath, God would remember mercy (Habakkuk 3:2)."
What do you think about Lotz's perspective on the coming eclipse? Here are two other biblical scholars who also think the solar event is a strong warning from God, based on these scriptures. Are you planning to watch the eclipse? And do you think it is God's way of speaking to America? Share your thoughts in the comments. Thank you!