Christian Astronomer Debunks Blood Moon Nonsense

John Hagee is working hard to promote his book and movie about all this “blood moons” bullshit, hosting a special TV program about them. But it seems he made the mistake of inviting Hugh Ross, an old-earth creationist and an actual astronomer, on the show. Ross pretty much destroyed the whole mess:

Ross’ participation in the event was something of a mystery since, from his opening remarks, he made it very clear that he did not subscribe to Hagee’s premise in the slightest, saying that there is no statistical significance to these blood moons because they are very common and that Hagee is merely retroactively attaching spiritual significance to these routine events.

Hagee, of course, did not particularly appreciate the fact that Ross was completely undermining the entire premise of the show, as well as his book and movie based upon this premise, and so he challenged him to explain how it was possible for blood moons to occur on significant Jewish holiday in two consecutive years.

Ross responded that lunar eclipses are so common that it is “mathematically inevitable” that one would be able to link them up to significant events in the Bible or in the history of Israel if that is what one set out to do. The Bible, Ross said, does say that there will be signs from God, but they will be rare things like an asteroid hitting a body of water and turning the water to poison, not common things like a lunar eclipse.

“My problem with the blood moons is that it’s not rare,” Ross said. “It’s hindsight. You’re looking at different events in Israel’s history and looking at different events in America’s history and you’re finding fits.”

“These blood moons are visible here but not in Israel,” Ross stated at one point, much to Hagee’s surprise. Explaining that “a total lunar eclipse basically is visible to about one-third to one-half the earth,” Ross asked why, if these blood moons are so significant to Israel, they are visible in America but not in Israel.

Hagee clearly was not aware of this fact, as all he could come up with as a response was that “I don’t have an answer for why Israel can’t see it.”

Right, because that would require thinking and this was an exercise in marketing, not rationality. You invited the wrong person to the party, John.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • StevoR

    If the moon turned to blood what blood type would it be?

    And would we not have boiling and freezing plasma .. plus platetets, red and white blood cells.

    Imagine that’d be kinda obviously miraculous. If it happened.

  • John Pieret

    Not that Ross has all his screws tightened down, but it was amusing to see Hagee and Barton looking like deer in the headlights.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    Blood Moon Nonsense

    Also dibs on Prog Rock band name!

     

    Ross asked why, if these blood moons are so significant to Israel, they are visible in America but not in Israel.

    Because the USA is the new Isreal. It’s right there in the Constitution, people!

  • dingojack

    What’s that old lawyer’s dictum?

    ‘Never ask a question [of a witness in the box] to which you don’t already know the answer’.

    Minus several million for organisation and preparation there Hagee.

    Dingo

  • colnago80

    My guess would be that Hagee, who is an absolute moron, was informed that Ross was a creationist and, apparently, thought he was a YEC (all creationists being YECS don’t you know). Ross is an old earth creationist.

  • http://www.pandasthumb.org Area Man

    The Bible, Ross said, does say that there will be signs from God, but they will be rare things like an asteroid hitting a body of water and turning the water to poison, not common things like a lunar eclipse.

    I miss the days when a sign from God would consist of a giant old man wearing bed sheets speaking to you in your native language.

  • whheydt

    So… Easter Sunday is supposed to be right after Passover. It’s also supposed to fall on the first Sunday after the first Full Moon after the Vernal Equinox. Therefore, there is always going to be a Full Moon within a month before Easter and–very likely–shortly before Passover (the exception would be if the Full Moon fell after sundown on Saturday, I suppose). Given that the major condition for an eclipse is a Full Moon, the odds are pretty good that there will be a Lunar Eclipse within 4 weeks of Passover/Easter.

    Plus, of course, given modern astronomical data, they’re very predictable.

  • Artor

    “I don’t have an answer for why Israel can’t see it.”

    Because there was a big fucking planet in the way? But those smartphone apps that let you look through the planet to see stars on the other side are pretty cool.

  • busterggi

    It was clouded over up my way so I guess my part of the planet is safe as the moon wasn’t visible.

  • eric

    IIRC they’ve made this mistake before. 1981, McLean vs. Arkansas, the creationist defense called Chandra Wickramasinghe as a witness assuming he would support them (he’s a mainstream astronomer but critical of Darwinian evolution because he’s a fairly radical panspermia advocate). Going by memory, things started off well for the creationists: as long as he was talking about panspermia as an alternative to the standard evolutionary view, the defense was okay. The moment the plaintiff’s lawyer asked his opinion on actual creationism, he drilled the creationists a new cornhole instead of supporting them.

  • Sastra

    I thought it was funny that the moderator called Ross’ question regarding ‘why the blood moon can’t be seen in Israel’ a “very scientific question.” No it wasn’t. Ross was digging for an apologetic response to the scientific facts. It was a theological question.

    Apparently any attempt to link faith to reality falls under the mantle of “science” as far as this crowd is concerned.

  • grumpyoldfart

    You invited the wrong person to the party, John.

    He’ll be alright. His potential customers will decide that the grumpy old astronomer with his citified book learning is not a real Christian and that nice Mr Hagee was right all along.

  • justawriter

    The Jewish calendar is a lunar calendar, so the full moon is going to occur on the same day of every month on that calendar. Lunar eclipses only happen during the full moon. So if there are any Jewish holidays that are scheduled for approximately the middle of the Jewish month, of course eventually there will be eclipses on those days. Science FTW!

  • colnago80

    Re eric @ #10

    Wickramasinghe is a colleague of Ross.

  • felidae

    The thought of someone “who finds new reasons to believe” gives me a shudder–as the old ones are proved to be horseshit, he has to come up with new horseshit reasons

  • mithrandir

    I’m still at a loss why a fundamentalist like John Hagee is openly dabbling in astrology. I was certain that fundamentalist Christians typically consider astrology to be demonic.

  • Crudely Wrott, lurching towards recrudescence

    Cut to the quick.

    Is there actually any day at all on any calendar you choose that is not significant to someone in some way?

    If not, someones been slacking . . .

  • Lofty

    Twas a funny colored Blood Moon in any case, more like Navel Orange With A Chrome Highlight.

  • http://essaressellwye.tumblr.com Hershele Ostropoler

    justawriter @ 13

    The Jewish calendar is a lunar calendar, so the full moon is going to occur on the same day of every month on that calendar. Lunar eclipses only happen during the full moon. So if there are any Jewish holidays that are scheduled for approximately the middle of the Jewish month, of course eventually there will be eclipses on those days.

    To elaborate, Passover is the 15th of Nisan, so the first night of Passover will always be pretty close to a full moon (I’m better versed in the math of the Hebrew calendar than the astronomy). It won’t be an eclipse every year, of course, but eclipses aren’t all that rare.

  • anubisprime

    mithrandir @ 16

    Hits the proverbial nail on the head…why indeed is Hagee jerkin’ around with such banal and simplistic bullshite like ‘blood moons’ in the first place.

    Imbuing them with prophetic and cosmic sign balderdash is extremely Paganesesque and is well worthy of the ‘wisdom’ and utter fear that pervaded the middle ages and to some extent still sends chills down the cassocks of the RCC because they started to believe the Pagans they usurped….

    It became basically pre-enlightenment thrill stories manufactured to encourage the villagers to club together to erect a church to keep the ghouls and ghosties away from their hearth. and every church needed its ju ju man.

    That the tales of signs and portents were, more often then not, fabricated by same scam merchants, looking for a secure billet, selling their tacky delusional crap anywhere there was a profit and by what any means, and usually employed in a handy social position b’twixt ‘n’b’tween the aristocracy in the castle, who were also prone to bullshite stories, and the pig shit shovelers in the hovels…

    The aristo’s wanted a compliant workforce and the shit shovelers did not want to go to hell…so the maths, and to some extent the social control, was pretty easy.

    Everyone got what they wanted…and so it goes!…(as Heller would say)

    It would seem that at least for Hagee times have not moved on significantly, the same scam by and large and the same goal employing the same targets and the exact same techniques, but it is also seemingly a major investment, I suspect tax incentives and possibly grants of some description will pay for the movie and book, but it also is apparent that Hagee’s ego is on the line as well!

    It remains the cognitive dissonance in the fundy ranks that will still buy the bollix as verbatim, they tend to want the impending horror as some kind of validation, if not vindication, of their own insane codswollop, they main problem being, it just ain’t happening at any level, maybe in the ranks questions are being asked as to why the rapture is taking so long?

    Hagee is just cashing in on the disgruntled with a bit of spiritual fluffing, after all they all so desperately want Armageddon to be true and who is Hagee to disagree with an opportunity for cash.

  • dingojack

    “Everyone got what they wanted…and so it goes!…(as Heller would say)”

    Uh – that’d be Kurt Vonnegut Jr. actually.

    Carry on.

    Dingo

  • anubisprime

    dingojack @ 21

    One or the other…what ya will…as you were that man, or woman…actually!