The so-called Super Blood Moon eclipse will turn the Moon an ominous crimson red between January 20 and January 21. In the UK, the eclipse will peak early on Monday morning, around 5.13am GMT (UTC) on January 21. As a result of the astronomical phenomenon, refracted sunlight in the Earth’s shadow will cast a red hue on the Moon. Conspiracy theorists, however, have linked the innocuous Blood Moon to apocalyptic warnings of the end times in the Bible.
Christian doomsday preachers believe the Blood Moon is a harbinger of doom and a sign of Jesus Christ’s return to Earth.
Because of this, Evangelical preacher Paul Begley from West Lafayette, Indiana, has said there is a remote possibility of the world ending on January 22.
During an online sermon, the preacher said: “Obviously these apocalyptic signs in the heavens are pointing to a catastrophic event that is just on the horizon.
‘We don’t know when – just because you’re going to have a Super Blood Moon on January 20 and January 21, doesn’t mean on January 22 all hell’s going to break loose.
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“But then again it doesn’t mean it won’t, ok, so there’s these signs that are starting to be revealed.
“And so, the urgency folks is now. Right now, ok? The urgency has begun.”
Christian conspirators like pastor Begley believe Blood Moon eclipses like the one seen next week have been prophesied by the Book of Joel, the Book of Acts and the Book of Revelation.
The three examples of scripture describe the Moon taking on a deep, blood-like colour during a time of widespread devastation and chaos.
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In the Book of Revelation, the final prophetic book of the Bible, the Blood Moon is said to precede the Second Coming of Jesus Christ at the end times.
The passage in question reads: “And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood;”
Pastor Begley said this is evidence of the Super Blood Moon being a “harbinger for America”.
The Blood Moon prophecy was invented in 2014 by two American preachers who feared a tetrad of four consecutive eclipses in a row.
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But astronomers do not believe the Blood Moon eclipse is anything more than a dazzling display of the solar system’s movements.
Maritime astronomer Bruce McClure of EarthSky.org, explained: “The term Blood Moon in Biblical prophecy appears to have been popularised by two Christian pastors, Mark Blitz and John Hagee.
“They used the term to apply to the full moons of the 2014 to 2015 lunar tetrad – four successive total lunar eclipses, each separated by six lunar months, with no partial lunar eclipses in between.
“Nowadays, it seems, the term Blood Moon is being used for any and all total lunar eclipses.”