Archive for November, 2017

Birth of Jesus Christ

The Biblical Astronomy of the Christmas Day Signs in 2 BC and 2017

This week we were all reminded of the importance of the Jupiter-Venus conjunction series and the critical role it has played regarding the birth of Christ, with their dazzling June 17th, 2 BC union, as Jupiter and Venus were closely aligned in Leo. As we have noted this continuing series related to the Celestial Sphinx relating to the modern Blood Moon Tetrads, our eyes have been opened to the key role embodied by this series, with its end-time applications. The Nov. 13thJupiter-Venus union saw the King Planet and the bright and Morning Star, less than 1/3 of a degree apart, 1 [Rev. 22:16]. During the Jupiter-Venus conjunction, Mars was mid-body in the constellation Virgo. Both Mars and Jupiter are moving east, Mars towards Virgo, and Jupiter moving towards Libra. Following the celestial signs around the 9/23/2017, Rev. 12 sign, Venus is involved in some noteworthy activity. While moving through Leo playing its part in forming the 12 stars in Virgo’s Crown and the 2017 triple union of Mercury-Regulus, Venus and Mars converge in Leo, remaining in close proximity in the first week of October. Rising in the dawn skies of October 5th, Venus passes 2 tenths of a degree from the arch-angel Mars-Michael, as seen in Plate 1 below. 2

Plate 1. Oct. 5th, 2017 Venus-Mars Conjunction in Leo

 

On Nov. 19th, after leaving its union with Venus, Jupiter unites with Zuben El Genubi in Libra, on its easterly ecliptic path into Sagittarius.
After the November 13th Jupiter-Venus union, the king planet continues on its ecliptic approach entering Libra, where it will remain forty-one weeks, in a subsequent 9-month retrograde into 2018. This is the first of a triple union between Jupiter and Zuben El Genubi in Libra, that will be completed in summer of 2018, resulting from Jupiter’s retrograde in Libra. The dates for this triple union are supplied below; 3

1. 12/21/2017 union of Jupiter-Zuben El Genubi in Libra.
2. 6/2/2018 union of Jupiter-Zuben El Genubi in Libra.
3. 8/15/2018 union of Jupiter-Zuben El Genubi in Libra.

In later Nov. 2017, we find Mars the archangel Michael moving into conjunction with Spica in the morning sky, see [Plate 3]. This union takes place on November 29th, with Mars 3 degrees north of Spica. Below we can see the Jupiter-Mars conjunction in Libra in early January 2018. This sets the stage for the triple conjunction of Jupiter-Zuben El Genubi in Libra based on the 2018 retrograde of Jupiter.

Plate 2. The Jan. 7th, 2018 Jupiter-Mars conjunction 4

 

In the morning sky on January 7, 2018, Mars finally overtakes Jupiter in Libra, in an eye-opening conjunction, with Mars only 3 tenths of a degree separated from Jupiter. The JupiterMars union of January 7th 2018 takes place after the first of 3 unions Jupiter will undergo in Libra, this time about 1/2 a degree apart from Libra’s brightest star– Zuben El-genubiDecember 21st 2017, finds Jupitein direct motion passing North of Libra’s alpha star, meaning “the purchase or price which is deficient.“5  Jupiter’s union with this bright star in Libra speaks to man’s inability to redeem himself, because he has been weighed in the balances and found wanting.

 

 


Plate 3. 12/21/2017
union of Jupiter-Zuben El Genubi in Libra, with Mars near Spica. 6

The significance of Libra not only refers to the perfect sacrifice of Jesus Christ, but also includes the judgement of God on mankind. The ONLY way man can be weighed in the balances and NOT found wanting, is by Believing in Jesus Christ as the only begotten Son of God who bought our redemption by spilling his innocent blood at the cross, [Rom. 10:9-10]. This truth is embodied in Libra’s star, Zuben Al Chemali-the Price that Covers! 7

Jesus is the only one ever who was not only qualified, but actually laid down his life for all man-kind, which makes him the only Way of Salvation, the Alpha and Omega-the first and last way God made available for the redemption of all humanity.

To brighten our holiday season this year, we will be treated to a Christmas Day conjunction of Saturn and Venus in Sagittarius! On Dec. 25th, 2017 Venus the bright and Morning Star unites with Saturn, displaying Christ’s victory over the evil one, as seen in Sagittarius where our quickly returning Lord Jesus Christ is portrayed in triumph, conquering to conquer! Here the star picture of the mounted Archer has his arrow aimed at the red heart of the ScorpionAntares, while the foot of Ophiuchus crushes the Scorpion’s heart underfoot. As we noted in our previous blog post, Saturn has just completed its triple union with Saiph, the star in Ophiuchus’ other foot which was stung by the Scorpion, bruising the heel of the 1st and 2nd Adams, [Gen. 3:15]. This shows Satan’s persistent evil to obstruct God’s purposes any way he can, even though he knows he is defeated. This planetary conjunction near the conqueror’s Bow, shows the deadly accuracy of our Lord’s aim [Plate 4] to destroy the works of the enemy, [I John 3:8b].

Plate 4. The Arrow of Sagittarius aimed in the Galactic Center to the Heart of the Scorpion.

Image result for Sagittarius-Scorpio constellation images

Of course, this week’s Jupiter-Venus union on Nov. 13th, 2017 reminds us of the Jupiter-Venus conjunctions marking the birth of Christ, on Sept. 11th, 3 BC. With the arrival of the new born king on the scene his sufferings to fulfill the OT Law as the Passover Lamb were ahead of him, where now he is looking forward to his Glory in eternal victory, and the redemption of his purchased possessionthe Church of his spiritual body. The Christmas Day conjunction of Saturn and Venus in Sagittarius, recalls the exploits of the Magi in 3-2 BC, with notable celestial activity. 

Matthew 2:9 

When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.

According to astronomical calculations, Jupiter was not visible crossing the Meridian, the “high point” over Bethlehem from September through November of 2 BC …However by December 4 of 2 BC, Jupiter became visible at the Meridian shortly before dawn…the eclipse
shortly preceding Herod’s death occurred on January 9, 1 BCThus it was sometime during this five week period from December 4th to January 9th that the Magi journeyed from Jerusalem to Bethlehem and saw the star of Matt. 2:9.
8 

In reference to “came and stood over” in verse 9:

Astronomically, stars and planets are similar to the sun in that they rise in the east and set in the west. Furthermore, a star or planet is like the sun in that it will reach a high point in the sky in relation to the observer. At this point it is on the Meridian (longitude) of the observer. During the day, the sun reaches this point at noon. Consider the stars and planets in their nightly courses. They rise in the east. At some time during the night each will reach its highest point in relation to the observer, the Meridian. If this occurs in the southern sky as one is travelling south, as with the Magi travelling from Jerusalem to Bethlehem, the star would appear to come and stand over one’s destination.9

We should recall at this juncture Jupiter’s annual activities including its retrograde motionbegan on December 25th, 2 BC. Martin states: “Jupiter arrived at its ordinary time for retrogression and it became stationary among the stars. But this time something unusual happened. In 2 BC as viewed from Jerusalem, Jupiter came to its normal stationary position directly over Bethlehem on December 25th…not only that, the planet assumed its stationary position while in the middle of the Constellation of Virgo, the Virgin. 10

Thus, according to Martin, the same astronomical phenomena that initiated Jupiter’s three Conjunctions with Regulus, its annual retrograde motion would have caused Jupiter to stand still in the heavens for about six days near the intersection of the ecliptic and the Meridian mid-body in Virgo. This occurred in week of the celebration of the Feast of Dedication in December of 2 BC. Also recall the relationship between the cycles of the Sun and Jupiter, and that the Sun, mid-bodied in Virgo for the twenty-day period, from August 27th to September 15th, marked the birth of the promised seed.

Martin goes on to say that: “on December 25th, 2 BC at the ordinary time for the Magi’s pre-dawn observations, Jupiter would have been seen in Meridian position (directly over Bethlehem) at an elevation of 68 degrees above the southern horizon. This precise position would show the planet shining directly down on Bethlehem while it was stationary among the stars.” 11

 Martin’s assertion that Jupiter began its retrograde motion on December 25th, 2 BC, aligns with the start of the Feast of Dedication, that year which was from December 22 to 29. As the Magi left Jerusalem, they saw Jupiter on its nightly course. Looking south they saw it high in the sky, nearing its apex on the Meridian of Jerusalem and Bethlehem. Thus, the king planet-Jupiter was clothing Virgo, as the Sun did during the birth of the promised seed, mirroring the movement of the light of the world, while clearly marking the birthplace of the King of the Jews for the Magi.

Plate 5. The Journey of the Magi (1894) by James Jaques Joseph Tissot “12

Image result for Magi Caravan images

These were important celestial indicators for the Magi, who would have seen the spiritual significance of “his star”—Jupiter, in” Virgo during the month of December in 2 BC, directly over Bethlehem, indicating the birthplace of the King of Kings, who would inherit David’s throne. In this light, we can understand Balaam’s great prophecy in Numbers 24, as a reference to this.

Num. 24:17-I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh, there shall come a star out of Jacob, and a sceptre shall rise out of Israel, and he shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth.

“Star out of Jacob and a sceptre shall rise out of Israel“- Star = H3556 (kowkab) figuratively an illustrious Prince who is the star to rise out of Jacob, holding the scepter as ruler over Israel. 13 We should note the figure of speech polysyndetyn utilized in this verse regarding the “many ands” which emphasize each aspect of the verse appearing between the “ands.” This “star” was associated with the sceptre rising out of Israel, is a celestial reference to the sign of Leo the Lion with specific implications for it’s brightest luminary, Regulus the king star, the brightest star on the ecliptic also known as the “heart of the Lion.” The King’s sceptre is the symbol of his power over the heathens and those who oppose his purposes, by which he will rule over them with an unbending authority or “rod of iron,” [Ps. 2, Rev. 19:15]. Regulus was known by the ancients as the only king star which is linked with this scepter. This fulfills Jacob’s prophesy, that one holding this scepter would arise out of Judah according to Genesis 49. Secondly, the regal authority of this star is established in the king planet-Jupiter, whose authority as we have just seen, was symbolized by Leo the Lion, of the tribe of Judah that provided the regal stock from which the kingly line of Israel arose, first in King David, and ultimately in Jesus Christ from the “root of David” [Rev. 5:5]. The triple planetary Conjunction of the king planet Jupiter, with the king star Regulus in Leo from 3-2 BC, thus aligns specifically with the prophecy of Genesis 49:8-10, which shows the maturation of the Lion of the Tribe of Judah. Balaam’s revelation here in Numbers 24:17 provides a Scriptural basis for the connection between the “star of Jacob” [Jupiter] and the “Sceptre,” to the advent of Christ the King, who came forth out of Jacob’s genealogical line. Secondly, there is a celestial double meaning in the phrase: Star out of Jacob, with connotations for both the general and specific aspects of our Celestial Prelude. The complete details of the correlation between the triple Conjunction of Jupiter and Regulus in 3-2 BC, and the record in Gen. 49, is available through our bookstore on the DVD “The Biblical Astronomy of the Birth of Christ.” This unique teaching provides the in-depth instruction on the celestial pageantry of the birth of Christ, along with the history of the Magi and numerous related Biblical Astronomy topics that time does not allow in this blog post.

  As we have shown, the ecliptic is structured so that each of the 12 primary signs of the zodiac of 30 degrees has three decans associated with them, of 10 degrees each. The first decan of Virgo called Coma, is depicted in the Dendera zodiac as a seated mother nourishing her infant son. Coma is the Hebrew name of this Constellation which means “the desired.” The Egyptian name for this decan of Virgo was Shes-nu the desired son, [Hagg. 2:7].14  It was in the head of this child, the desired of the nations, as Haggai prophesied him to be, that a supernova appeared over 100 years prior to the birth of Christ. E.W. Bullinger refers below, to the popular belief regarding this general sign that was prevalent in and before the first century BC:

“a traditional prophecy well known in the East, carefully preserved and handed down, that a new star would appear in this sign [Coma] when he whom it foretold, would be born.” 15

Plate 6. Jupiter-Saturn triple Conjunction of 7 BC.

Jupiter-Saturn Triple Conjunction

This tradition was based on Balaam’s declaration in Numbers 24, meaning that Balaam’s prophecy holds additional import. First, The new star, or supernova located in the head of the infant in Coma, visible for a total of over 270 years, was the general sign that prepared the Magi to be on watch for specific aspects of the second part of the Celestial Prelude, involving the series of celestial signs from 7-5 BC. These signs seen in the triple planetary Conjunction of Jupiter-Saturn in 7 BC would set the stage for the Magi’s recognition of the triple planetary union of Jupiter-Regulus from 3-2 BC, marking the long prophesied birth of the promised seed. Here we see the third aspect of Balaam’s prophecy in relation to the scepter, symbolic of the reign of the king planet Jupiter. As we have seen in our study, Jupiter is the planet that the Magi called “his Star” in Matt. 2:2.

there shall come a star out of Jacob“- In Numbers 24:17, when “Jacob” is referred to, it refers not only to his seed, but also the land that was promised to him, in his Covenant with God.  Bullinger states in reference to this star in Numbers 24:17 that the word “come” is, come forth (as in the Revised Version). He translates “there shall come a Star out of Jacob,” as: “There shall come forth a star at or over the inheritance or possessions of Jacob,” thus indicating the locality which would be on the Meridian of this star.”16 [emphasis mine]

This “Star out of Jacob” would not only be unique in its Messianic symbolism, of the Promised Seed, but also because of the terrestrial link of his birthplace-Bethlehem of Judea, in the Promised Land of Jacob’s inheritance. This holy land, especially the town of Bethlehem, was specifically marked out by his star-Jupiter, as God guided the Magi to the birthplace of both David and Christ. Rolleston has an notable remark regarding this:

“The Magi forewarned that the star must appear over Jacob, over his inheritance, would see that star in Coma passing over the center of that inheritance: but as it would also appear to pass vertically over every part of it that was nearly in the Latitude of Jerusalem, thus they could not at once fix on the spot of the Messiah’s birth, therefore they went to inquire; the Latitude, as it were, being given by the star, the longitude by the prophecy.” 17

Rolleston’s quote reveals that she also fell victim to the confusion between the general and specific signs of the Celestial Prelude. It was not the new star in Coma that led the Magi to Bethlehem, which had been shining brightly for over 100 years, but the ScepterJupiter in Virgo s
tationary due to its retrograde motion during the winter Solstice that stood over Bethlehem, the inheritance of Jacob, that inspired the great joy of the Magi. It was the dual triple Conjunctions of Jupiter-Saturn that identified the king planet as “His Star,” and the same star that got them started on their caravan which led them to Jerusalem in August of 3 BC. Since Coma is the “L”-shaped decan of Virgo, pictured below, adjacent to the Woman in the heavens, the Magi saw both the supernova in Coma, AND Jupiter in Virgo, simultaneously aligned on the Meridian in the same part of the skies over Bethlehem. We have depicted this graphically in the banner of this blog post.

Plate 6. Coma an ancient Decan of Virgo

Image result for Decan Coma

Here we see the Witness of the Stars, and the Scriptures, working together to bring the Magi to the toddler Jesus, because their alert observation of “his star” brought them to Jerusalem and the scribe’s declaration from Micah 5:2, when Herod questioned them, sent the Magi south towards Bethlehem. Tracking again the historical references to the Coma supernova, Ignatius, one of the Church Fathers and the Bishop of Antioch, in about 69 AD, records that: “At the appearance of the Lord a star shone forth brighter than all other stars.” If we are careful not to confuse this reference with the planet Jupiter, we can deduce that this supernova was still visible to Ignatius over 200 years after it first appeared, thus marking the general time-frame of Jesus’ birth. Joseph Seiss has some viable historical references which narrow down the period wherein this supernova was visible:

Hipparchus about one hundred twenty-five years before Christ, observed it [the Coma supernova] as a new star, and was led by it to draw up his catalog of starsPtolemy, about one hundred and fifty years after Christ, refers to it as having been observed by Hipparchus, but as having become so faint as hardly to be any longer distinguishable.” 18

  A point of interest here regarding Hipparchus is that he is generally credited with the discovery of the precession of the equinoxes by modern science in about 134 BC. He reportedly came upon this discovery while studying the star Spica, on a celestial map produced by his predecessor, Timocharis. He noticed that Spica was about 2 degrees away from it’s location on the star map, and decided that its movement averaged one degree every 75 years; [close to the actual 72 years]. This is a key to remember in our study of Dendera’s zodiac related to Spica, and this general sign detailed in other sections of our [www.try-god.com] website. Rolleston also records the appearance of this bright new star in 125 BC, so bright that it was visible during the day.

The Magi would have witnessed both this star shining brightly in Coma, in the head of the young desired son, seen as already standing on his mother’s lap, not as an infant in a manger, [Plate 7]. Just below Coma in VirgoJupiter was in retrograde motion standing still on the Meridianon December 25th during their early morning observations around 4:25 am in 2 BCJupiter was standing high overhead, directly above Bethlehem, as the Magi approached from Jerusalem, the general sign in harmony with the specific. This gives another reason why the Magi were the only group to recognize the specific signs of the Messiah’s birth, because the general sign was a fixture in Coma from about 128 BC to 150 AD, marking the general period the Promised Seed would appear. The typical person wouldn’t have noticed any irregularity in the heavens, because it does not stand out unless coupled with the knowledge of the specific signs, regarding Jupiter, which brought the Magi to Israel in the first place. This is another reason why the Magi were overjoyed when they saw “his star” over Bethlehem. Also of interest, is the truth that the Gentile Magi arrived during Hannukah-the festival of lights, also recognized as the second Feast of Tabernacles in Israel, allowed for those who missed the first one in September. It is fitting that the initial Gentile recognition and response to the light of the world took place during this appropriate time, indicating God’s Grace to all mankind, [Hag. 2:7]. The timing of the winter Solstice is also key here because the Gentile Magi appeared at the time of the expected birth of the heathen sun-god, but honored the true Son of God instead, marking a much needed transition from the world’s idol practices, to the true veneration of the Promised Seed-Jesus Christ. This understanding of the distinction between the general and specific signs surrounding the birth of Christ should clear up the majority of the confusion and controversy related to this topic of study, if the Bible is recognized as the standard of truth, supported by history and the accuracy of the Biblical Astronomy as detailed here.

With both Mars and Venus in Ophiuchus, during this sign in December of 2 BC, we can see the archangel Mars-Michael, standing to protect the ascendant Morning star-the toddler Jesus Christ, during this time of the enemy’s attack. A noteworthy point here is Jupiter standing still in the heavens for about six days during the Hanukkah celebration, near the intersection of the ecliptic and the Meridian in Virgo. This focuses our attention on the path of Jupiter intersecting the ecliptic; the Sun’s path, pointing out the celestial relationship between Jupiter and the Sun, not to mention their kindred symbolism.

Martin states that:

… while Jupiter was in its “standing still” position over Bethlehem, the Sun was also “standing still.” All know that December 25th is in the usual period of the Winter Solstice. The word Solstice means “Sun stands still.” These stationary coincidences of Jupiter and the Sun are quite related, and would have appeared significant… 19

Plate 7. Sunset Horizon from Jerusalem at Christ’s birth on 9-11-3 BC.

Image result for Virgo-Coma images

Malachi 4:2 
But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall.

The word arise” in verse 2, is not only used of the Sun and light in general, but it and two of it’s derivatives occur in [Isaiah 60:1-3, Jer. 23:5]. As we have seen in regards to Jer. 23:5, the planet Jupiter, the sedeq planet is associated with the Messiah, Jesus Christ the righteous zemach-branch, and is one of five primary Old Testament prophecies pertaining to this Branch, as the coming promised seed. However, with the stationary choreography of Jupiter and the Sunwe have an added Messianic-solar link. The reference of “arise” above, is very interesting when considered not only from the aspect of Jupiter standing still, in Virgo, but also referring to the zemach-branch and the setting time of the star Spica in Virgo, whose ancient Hebrew star name refers to the four-fold ministry of Christ seen in the four Gospels. Thus it serves as a singular celestial marker of the moment of Christ’s birth, following on the heels between the setting Sun and New Crescent Moon at Virgo’s feet, [Plate 7] during the first moments of Tishri 1, in 3 BC! Thus, Virgo set the context for both Jupiter standing still on the Meridian  as a reference to Bethlehemthe birth-place of Jesus Christ, and the star-set of Spica in reference to Jesus’ birth-time, at the beginning of New Year’s dayTishri 1, on Israel’s Calendar.

This scenario provides us with the exact moments of the birth of Christ, about 20 minutes after sunset, with the setting of the Star Spica,  coinciding with the first appearance of the Crescent New Moon on the first of Tishri, the newly born king was manifested to his earthly parents Mary and Joseph. Fifteen months later in Dec. 2 BC, the Magi paid their visit and homage to the toddler Jesus, imparting their gifts unto the young king, which would finance the impending trip of the royal family to Egypt, and away from Herod.

With this year’s Christmas conjunction we are reminded of our Lord’s 1st Advent, but even more we see his quick and victorious Return for the redeeming of the Church of his spiritual body, that we may ever enjoy our victory with him and the Heavenly Father.

Amen!

 

Footnotes

1. Starry Night Pro, Astronomy Software on Jupiter-Venus union of Nov. 13th, 2017.
2. Bruce McClure in “Tonight” for Plate 1 picture credit.
3. Starry Night Pro, Astronomy Software on the triple union dates of Jupiter-Zuben El Genubi in Libra, 2017-18.
4. Picture credit on Plate 2: https://jeffreylhunt.wordpress.com/2017/09/30/2017-2018
5. Witness of the Stars, E.W. Bullinger p. 45
6. Picture credit on Plate 3: https://jeffreylhunt.wordpress.com/2017/09/30/2017-2018
7. Witness of the Stars, E.W. Bullinger p. 46
8. Jesus Christ Our Promised Seed,  p. 235. American Christian Press
9. IBID p. 234.
10. THE STAR THAT ASTONISHED THE WORLD, Dr. Earnest Martin p. 49.
11. Ibid
12. Picture credit on Plate 5The Journey of the Magi (1894) by James Jaques Joseph Tissot
13. Strong’s Concordance on H3556, James Strong.
14. Witness of the Stars, E.W. Bullinger
15. The Witness of the Stars, E.W. Bullinger ppg. 36-37.
16. IBID footnote p.37
17.  The Mazzaroth, Frances Rolleston. Footnote on “The Star of Bethlehem.”
18. The Gospel in the Stars, Joseph Seiss, p. 161.
19.  THE STAR THAT ASTONISHED THE WORLD, Dr. Earnest Martin. p. 60.

 

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The Biblical Astronomy of the Birth and Return of Jesus Christ; the Dual Fulfillment of Revelation 12, [Part 2.]

In Part 1 of this study we looked at various aspects of the Dual fulfillment of Rev.12, emphasizing some of the astronomical elements of this record. One of these elements was the Serpent-Dragon, where we noted the significance of Draco the Dragon, and the Draconid Meteor Shower during the birth of Christ in 3 BC, as opposed to the celestial signs tied to the SerpentSerpens, in the end-times meaning of Rev. 12, on 9-23-17.

Rev 12:3
And there appeared3700 another243 wonder4592 in1722 heaven;3772 and2532 behold2400 a

great3173 red4450 dragon,1404 having2192 seven2033 heads2776 and2532 ten1176 horns,2768 and2532 

seven2033 crowns1238 upon1909 his848 heads.

This is the first of 13 uses of “dragonin the Book of Revelation, indicative of the disorderly and rebellious nature of the fiery Red Dragon. Again we find a seven fold order of the Dragon’s spirit kingdom referenced in the Dragon’s seven heads along with the 7 crowns upon his 7 heads. The 7 heads likely refer to seven ruling [unclean spirits-daimon; Revelation 16:13-14], who embody a leading aspect of the Dragon’s authority over his earthly kingdom, and his spirit realm.

John’s Revelation in Chapter 12 of the Dragon and the Woman.

Image result for rev. 12 dragon images

Our emphasis in Part 1 revolved around how the Meteor Shower from Draco was the focus, which changes later to the Constellation of Serpens-the Serpent. This change is not only noted in the astronomical setting, but as we will see, it is also part of the Biblical record in Rev. 12. In verses 9-10 below we find certain names of the adversary, describing traits of his nature and operations, yet they still refer to the same enemy.

Rev. 12:9-10

And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceives the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him10 And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.

The first two names in verse 9 are the Dragon and the old Serpent, referring to differing elements of the same enemy. The 7 heads generally refer both to the dragon and the serpent but in different constellations, and settings. Draco is at the North Celestial Pole while Serpens is on the ecliptic. Draco includes a time before the dragon was cast down, resulting from the war in heaven that took place in the 1st Heavens and Earth, [2 Pet. 3:3-7]. This is consistent with the symbolism of the Dragon who embodies the war and conflict with God. The Serpent-Serpens not only embodies the contest for dominion in its struggle for the Crown with the first Adam, [Gen. 3] but the 2nd Adam also, as the deceiving tempter [Matt. 4, Lk. 4]. The Serpent’s conflict with man was not initiated until after the Dragon was cast down, since man did not become involved in the war in heaven, until after he was created in the Second Heaven and Earth, [Gen. 1:26-28]. The war in heaven involved only the angelic realm initially, between Michael and his angels against the Dragon and his, [Rev. 12: 7-8].

Once the Dragon was cast down, his first focus on Man in the conflict was the first Adam through Eve. But in the Serpent’s confrontation with Eve in the garden, he manifested more as a tempting deceiver, than he did in the open conflict of the war in heaven. Obviously the serpent was not going to fool the Almighty. Once the second
Adam-Jesus Christ permanently sealed the serpent’s fate, he was caught up unto God and his throne, [Rev. 12:5] whereupon the serpent’s efforts to persecute the woman, shifted to make war with the remnant of the woman’s seed who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ, [Rev. 12: 17]. This again illustrates the dual fulfillment of the “woman,” as Mary and Israel, her seed as the 1st and 2nd Adam, and the adversary in his multiple serpentine guises seen in his various names and functions, first at war with God, and later with man, [Rev. 12:9-10] for Corona Borealis-the Crown of dominion. This again helps us see in detail, the dual fulfillment inherent in the Rev. 12 record.

A key element in grasping this dual fulfillment of Rev. 12 involves how the 12th Chapter of the book of Revelation opens with references to signs of the Mazzaroth- the Hebrew Zodiac. This is a clue that we will not fully grasp the truths contained here, without an understanding the principles of Biblical Astronomy. God’s eternal purposes and plan to re-order the ages [Heb. 1:2] in the first and second Advents of Jesus Christ, are told in the Gospel of the Stars set in the heavens by the Almighty at Creation. [Gen. 1:14-17] exhibits how this order of Creation [Rom. 1:19-21] aligns with the order of His Written Word [Ps. 19] as seen in the Celestial Gospel. As the heavens are God’s perfect timepiece of Creation, so Jesus Christ is the temporal centerpiece and the Agent of the Creator’s master-plan for all his-story. It is only through Christ that all Creation is redeemed, and the temporal and spiritual chaos that infected all Creation via the dragon’s revolt, is healed via the re-ordering of the 7 Spiritual Administrations or Ages representing the consummation of all time.

We can see the Celestial Gospel highlighted in the recent triple planetary unions circling the Alpha and Omega Signs of Virgo and Leo, marking the primary stars of the Celestial Sphinx. In last month’s blog post concerning Saturn’s retrograde motion in Ophiuchus, we noted how this was only one of three concurrent triple planetary conjunctions leading up to the Rev. 12 sign on 9-23-17. These multiple planetary retrogrades carry a special message and end-times epistleOphiuchus is conclusively identified with Christ in the triple union of Saturn with the star Saiph in the serpent-holder’s left foot, meaning “bruised.” Part 2 of this study focuses more on the aftermath of celestial signs following the Rev. 12 scenario on 9-23-17.

Image result for 2017 Saturn triple conjunction

The charts below depict not only the triple union of Saturn and Saiph in 2017, but also the concurrent triple conjunctions of Jupiter-Spica in Virgo and Mercury-Regulus in Leo on Sept. 9th of 2017. After its first union with Saiph in December of 2016Saturn began to retrograde in Ophiuchus March 26th, 2017. Then Saturn entered Sagittarius for 84 days prior to returning to Ophiuchus May 18th, 2017. On August 21st, 2017 Saturn reached its Western stationary point North of the star Theta Ophiuchi, the day of the Total Solar Eclipse across AmericaSaturn’s retrograde ended a week later on August 28th, 2017. After returning to its direct motion, Saturn completed its 3rd union with the star Saiph on Sept. 6th, 2017, as Mercury was also in retrograde, looping around Mars and Regulus in conjunction in Leo, on Sept. 4thAccording to Starry Night Pro,1 the dates for the triple conjunction of Saturn and Saiph in the foot of Ophiuchus are as follows:

1. Saturn-Saiph conjunction 12-25-16
The Total Solar Eclipse across America in Leo, 8-21-2017.
Lunar Occultation of Regulus in Leo, 8-21-2017.
Saturn’s Retrograde ends 8-21-2017.
2. Saturn-Saiph conjunction 8-21-2017
Saturn-Saiph-Moon conjunction 8-30-17
3.  Saturn-Saiph conjunction 9-6-17

As we mentioned above, during this time frame Mercury-Regulus was also involved in a concurrent triple conjunction in Leo culminating on Sept. 9th of 2017. The dates for this key triple planetary union series based on Mercury’s retrograde motion are below.

1. Mercury-Regulus in Leo 7-25-2017
Total Solar Eclipse in Leo, 8-21-2017
Triangular Massing of Mercury-Mars-Regulus in Leo, 9-1-17 

2. Mercury-Regulus during Mars-Regulus conjunction in Leo 9-4-2017
3. Mercury-Regulus in Leo 9-9-2017

As Mercury ends its retrograde motion in Leo looping around Regulus, Jupiter also completes its retrograde loop of Spica in Virgo. This depicts the Celestial Sphinx as the primary stars of both Virgo and Leo are the focus of the retrograding planets Jupiter and Mercury. Both of these retrogrades culminate on Sept. 9th, as Jupiter exits Virgo’s womb. The Celestial Sphinx marks the Alpha and Omega stars of the Hebrew Zodiac with the head of the woman Virgo unified with the body of Leo the Lion, both punctuated on this day. This recalls  the Sun’s annual course on the ecliptic [Ps. 19:4-6], relating the Gospel in the stars telling the story of our Coming Redeemer, in his first and second Advents. This is the basis of Biblical Astronomy through the Ages, and it also views the ecliptic as one of Virgo’s Crowns, as the Head of the Sphinx since Mary bore the Promised Seed.

A month after the “birthing” of Jupiter, on October 13th Mercury passes 1 degree South of the King planet in Virgo.2 Here Mercury heralds the birth of Jupiter, establishing their recent concurrent retrogrades and mutual triple conjunctions, in a unified message of the Witness of the Stars. Its like the heavens took a “pregnant pause” for Jupiter’s birthing, before the purpose of their Creation is manifested. The Celestial witness has been circulating in the skies since time immemorial, revealing the heavenly signs of the Birth and Return of Christ, and now in the end-times when time is short, the entire history and stellar testimony is glorified in preparation for the Returning Lord Jesus Christ!

This October 13th Jupiter-Mercury union in Virgo recalls a similar union of these two planets a year earlier almost to the day, on Oct. 11th, 2016, in a pre-dawn Mercury conjunction with Jupiter, as Mercury passed within a degree of Jupiter in a Sunrise union.3 Its important to realize that this occurs during the Jupiter-Venus conjunction series from 2015-2017, as part of the Celestial Sphinx signs in Virgo and Leo. This conjunction series includes two triple unions of Jupiter-Venus, one each in Leo then in Virgo, the head of the Woman united with the body of the Lion, as the two main components of the Great Sphinx. We find this manifested also at the birth of Christ in a dazzling Jupiter-Venus conjunction in Leo on June 17th of 2 BC. It was also 2 Jupiter-Venus conjunctions that actually bracketed the majority of heavenly signs marking the birth of Christ in 3-1 BC!

Jupiter-Venus Conjunction

The 1st Jupiter-Venus Conjunction marking the birth of Christ took place on August 31st, 3 BC, in Leo, with the last one occurring on August 21st, 1 BC, in Virgo. Here we find an interesting variation on a Celestial Sphinx sign directing us to the planetary unions of Jupiter-Venus, marking an initial fulfillment of the Rev. 12:1-2 prophecy relating to the sufferings of Christ in his ministry as the Passover Lamb. This alerts us that we should also look for similar Celestial Sphinx signs as a precursor to the Lord’s Second Coming.

The following dates for signs of the Celestial Sphinx witnessing Jupiter-Venus conjunctions in Leo in the Hebrew Jubilee year of 2015-2016 are as follows:

June 30th, 2015
August 25th, 2015
October 26th, 2015

The following dates saw Jupiter-Venus conjunctions in Virgo in 2016-17, culminating with Nov. 13th 2017:

July 27th, 2016
Feb. 26th, 2017
Nov. 13th, 2017

Near dawn in the first days of November 2017, Venus the Morning Star following Jupiter through Virgo, passes by Spica-Al Zemach, the branch and offspring of God appearing closest before sunrise on November 2. 5 Spica, shining in its 1st magnitude brilliance, illuminates the four fold ministry of Christ it embodies in Scripture, seen in the spiritual light of the four Gospels. When paired with Venus, the 3rd brightest object behind the Sun and Moon, this conjunction is one that deserves our attention.

The Nov. 13thJupiter-Venus union finds the bright and Morning Star, less than 1/3 of a degree apart, 6 [Rev. 22:16] from the king planet. Do you think the Heavenly Father wants us to notice these signs of the Celestial Sphinx? During this Jupiter-Venus conjunction we find Mars mid-body in the constellation Virgo. Both Mars and Jupiter are moving east, Mars in Virgo, while Jupiter is moving east through Libra. In late Nov. 2017, we find Mars the archangel Michael moving into conjunction with Spica in the morning sky. This conjunction takes place on November 29th, with Mars only 3 degrees north of Spica.7 This completes a parade of planets through Virgo, forming her crown in Leo on 9-23-17, commemorating Jupiter’s birthing from Virgo’s womb.

After the November 13th union, Jupiter continues its ecliptic path on the way to Libra, then after completing its 2017 retrograde in Virgo, at midnight in Israel on December 25th, 2017, Jupiter enters Libra where it remains 41 weeks, in a subsequent 9-month retrograde in 2018.

Venus and Mars in Virgo near Spica, Nov. 2017. 8

In the morning sky on January 7, 2018, Mars finally overtakes Jupiter in Libra, in an eye-opening conjunction, with Mars less than one-quarter degree separated from Jupiter.9 The JupiterMars conjunction of January 7th 2018 takes place after the first of 3 unions Jupiter will undergo in Libra, as a result of Jupiter’s retrograde motion, this time with Libra’s brightest star- Zuben Elgenubi. In mid-December 2017, Jupiter in direct motion passes less than a degree North of this star, meaning “the purchase or price which is deficient,“10 in its 1st conjunction. Jupiter’s union with this Alpha star in Libra speaks to man’s inability to redeem himself, because he has been weighed in the balances and found wanting.

The significance of Libra not only refers to the perfect sacrifice of Jesus Christ, but also includes the judgement of God on mankind. The ONLY way man can be weighed in the balances and NOT found wanting, is by Believing in Jesus Christ as the only begotten Son of God who bought our redemption for us by spilling his innocent blood on the cross, [Rom. 10:9-10]. This truth is found in Libra in the star called Zuben Al Chemali-the Price that Covers! 11

Jesus is the only one ever who was not only qualified, but actually laid down his life for all mankind, which is why he is the only Way of Salvation, the Alpha and Omega-the first and last way God has made available for the redemption of all humanity.

Libra and Scorpius From Jamieson circa 1822. 12

Image result for constellation Libra images

Beginning 2018 Jupiter will be located about 2° East of Zuben Elgenubi, reaching its Eastern stationary point in March. Jupiter starts its retrograde, in opposition in early May, around 3° East of Zuben Elgenubi. The planet passes North of the star again in early June, reaching its Western stationary point in mid-July. As it resumes direct motion Jupiter proceeds passing North of Zuben Elgenubi for a third union in mid-August 2018Jupiter having completed its triple union with Zuben El Genubi, then leaves Libra on October 11th, 2018. 13

According to modern terminology LIBRA is known as “THE SCALES,” but, astronomers have realized there was a high historical probability that LIBRA has been an ancient Egyptian corruption. In the Akkadian language, which predates the Egyptian, the months of the year were named after the signs of the zodiac, and {TULKU} the sign of the 7th month  is what we now call LIBRA. “Tul” means “mound” and “ku” means sacred, thus “tulku” means “sacred mound” or “holy altar.”14

The Akkadian name for LIBRA was BIR, meaning: “the light,” where the lamp with its light, or the altar and its fire were symbolized. The emblem by which LIBRA is still known today appears much more like the top of an altar, than a pair of balances. This agrees with the message of the Mazzaroth better than “the scales” because the tribe of Levi was linked with Libra, as the Levites were the Hebrew priesthood who had charge over the holy altar, and the “balance of the sanctuary.” The sacrifice linked with the Passover Lamb under OT Law, (Capricorn & ARIES), foreshadowed the once and final sacrifice Christ paid, the perfect price of redemption for all mankind.

The ancient shape of this heavenly altar was circular. The circular disc of the altar is preserved in its two circular scales, forming the modern sign of LIBRA. At one point the circular picture of the altar of LIBRA disappeared, as the use of this sign penetrated the Occident. When it reached Greece only the “Chelai” remained; which is the Greek word for the sign, meaning “the claws.” As a result the scorpion of SCORPIO, depicted in the heavens as reaching towards the pair of scales in LIBRA, came to symbolize both signs, its body-SCORPIO with the claws supplanting LIBRA. Since the Levites had charge of the Tabernacle services, whose tent was located in the center of Israel’s wilderness camp, surrounded by the 12 tribes in their zodiacal order, the sign of the altar was removed from the outer circle of the ecliptic. Being positioned in the center of the circle Libra embodied God’s presence among His people [Num. 2:17]. This documents the historical process of how the pair of circular scales depicting LIBRA were substituted for the ancient circular altar. By covering the meaning of the altar, the Mazzaroth message was clouded and eventually lost for a time. On the ecliptic, SCORPIO appears just left of LIBRA. In the Akkadian the Scorpion was called GIR-TAB, meaning “the seizer and the stinger.“15 Some ancient sources relate SCORPIO as the only triple sign of the Zodiac, reflecting the triune ministry of the thief to steal, kill and destroy, [John 10:10a]. At the same time the “destroyer” aspect of the Scorpion [Rev. 9:11], while stinging Ophiuchus in the heel, stretches out its claws to seize the altar.

Hydra the Serpent Abhorred and Destroyed. 16

Image result for Hydra constellation images

The Hydra is the longest of the Constellations, extending below Libra’s scales through Virgo and Leo to include Cancer. These four signs; the woman, her seed, his sacrifice, and the altar, not only represent 1/3 of the entire circle of the 12 signs of the zodiac, but also reflect a carnal image of Christ’s righteous sacrifice, in the religion of human works, attempting to earn salvation while ignoring the completed work of Grace, given by God in His only begotten Son. Thus, as the Hydra [the serpent destroyed] slithers below these four signs of the zodiac, he represents the counterfeit and the deception of anti-Christ, leading away from, and denying the true work of Christ. This is an important and ongoing aspect of the devil’s works that Christ came to destroy[John 10:10, I John 3:8].

The man “Ophiuchus” personifies both the first and second Adam, is engaged in a death struggle with the serpent,  for the dominion of the world, symbolized by the crown. We can see this because it was the devil in serpent form, who stole the crown from the first Adam; and again the serpent struggling with the perfect 2nd Adam-Jesus Christ; who now has dominion over the world. Not only does the serpent fail in the attempt, but is utterly defeated and trodden under foot [Ps. 91]. The Scorpion’s conflict represents an aspect of the Serpent, in how the enemy tries to seize on God’s true atonement, and substitute “the way of Cain” as his own counterfeit religious altar of human merit, replacing the atoning sacrifice of Christ. The idea of salvation by works has been around a long time, and was in large part of what the Protestant Reformation was fought over. In SCORPIO we can see the effort of the Scorpion to wound the man in the heel, depicting the serpent in Genesis 3:15, while the other foot of the man is placed over the red heart of the Scorpion; Antares showing it’s destruction in the conflict. The Hebrew name of the Scorpion-akrab, meaning to war or conflict, is referred to in Psalm 91.

Psalm 91:11-13
“For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone. Thou shalt tread upon the lion and the adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.”

As we recall the spiritual authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, seated at the right Hand of God in the heavens, we should be mindful that we retain this same authority over the enemy, since we have been raised to be seated in Christ at the same apex of spiritual power, [Eph. 2:5-7, Lk. 10:17-20]. We find evidence of this also in Rev. 12 below.

(Rev 12:5) And2532 she brought forth5088 a man730 child,5207 who3739 was3195 to rule4165 all3956

nations1484 with1722 a rod4464 of iron:4603 and2532 her848 child5043 was caught up726 unto4314 

God,2316 and2532 to his848 throne.

This verse encapsulates the victorious life, ministry and completed work of Jesus Christ, from birth to resurrection and beyond, in one verse of Scripture. This figure of speech is called symperasma, provides a summary and conclusion of the subject matter-the inevitable Coming and ultimate Victorious Return of the Promised Seed. The emphasis here shows Christ’s ultimate victory over the serpent and its seed, despite all the enemy’s efforts to obstruct the purposes of the Heavenly Father. This emphasis is monumentally preserved in the Great Sphinx with the head of the Woman Virgo bearing the infant promised seed, who matures to fulfill his highest of calling, by defeating and destroying the enemy and its work, as shown in the other 9 zodiacal signs between Virgo and Leo. His final victory over the serpent is witnessed in Leo, the Lion of the tribe of Judah [Rev. 5:5], as the Lion’s extended claws rend the Hydra to pieces.

As we are assured of final victory we need only walk in the full confidence and Love of our Lord, knowing that He is coming quickly to exhibit us to the Heavenly Father for all eternity!

Footnotes

1. Starry Night Pro, Astronomy Software on the 2016-17 triple conjunction of Saturn

2. Ibid, on the October 13th, 2017 Jupiter-Mercury Conjunction.

3. Ibid on the October 11th, 2016 Jupiter-Mercury Conjunction.

4. Ibid on Jupiter-Venus conjunction graphics and dates.

5. Ibid on Venus-Spica union in Nov. 2017.

6. Ibid on Jupiter-Venus union on Nov. 13th, 2017.

7. Ibid on Mars-Spica

8. Venus and Mars in Virgo near Spica, Nov. 2017 picture credit from Bob McClure.

9. Starry Night Pro, Astronomy Software on the Jan. 7th, 2018 Jupiter-Mars union. 

10. Witness of the Stars, E.W. Bullinger p. 45

11. Ibid, p. 46

12. Libra and Scorpius From Jamieson circa 1822.

13. Starry Night Pro, Astronomy Software on the 2017 triple conjunction of Jupiter in Libra

14. Witness of the Stars, E.W. Bullinger p. 47.

15. Witness of the Stars, E.W. Bullinger p. 47

16. Germanic Astronomy and Mythology-picture credit.

 

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