(From an earlier post) Greeting everyone! I'm discovering all kinds of interesting information this week. There are hundreds of Babylonian tablets that are spread throughout the world in some of the most famous museums. Some of these clay tablets contain not only real observations of eclipses, but also how to make predictions from eclipses based on many different factors. John M. Steele's book Observations and Predictions of Eclipse Times by Early Astronomers is an excellent source on this topic. Many of these eclipse tables were of actual lunar eclipses dating from second and first BCE. Some of the tablets give very precise directions in how to interpret the eclipse. For example one mentioned in Steele's book reads,
"When Sin (i.e., the moon) makes an eclipse, you must also consider the month, the day, the watch, the wind, the path (i.e., area of the sky in which it took place), and the positions of the star as they stood during the eclipse, and then you can give the decision in accordance with its month, its day, its watch, its wind, its path, and its star."
The positions of the planets become very important. Also from Steele's book,
"If the moon is eclipsed in Leo and finishes the watch an the north wind blows, Jupiter does not stand in the eclipse [a halo surrounds (the moon) and Regulus stands within in] For this sign: [the king] of Akkad will experience hardship/sibbu-disease; varian; it will seize him, and in a revolt they will oust him from his throne. His people will experience great famine; brother will kill his brother, friend his friend, in battle. For three years... the gods will abandon the country.."[56
Therefore, eclipses were very important in the prophecy of the Magi. I'm working on this, and how it relates to the March 23 Passover total lunar eclipse of 5 BCE. Many of these tablets deal with cities, regions, and rulers in the predictions. More to come, until then GO WITH GOD!
It is my strong opinion that the 5 BCE Passover total lunar eclipse warned the Jews of coming changes. King Herod died shortly before the next Passover, and Roman rule tightened throughout the life of Jesus. Remember the Talmud says that lunar eclipses are bad for Israel. To the Magi it would mean the same thing, or changes were coming to the nation whose most important day of worship is Passover. In Babylonian tradition a lunar eclipse was bad for the king. But, remember what was bad for Israel was good for the world. The Star of Bethlehem, the March 5 BCE Chinese comet was also in the sky at the same time. This told the Magi that a new king was coming. They may have even thought that this new ruler would have the approval of Augustus who was found of comets. After all he justified his rule on one shortly after the assassination of his uncle Julius Caesar. Until next time, GO WITH GOD!
15 years ago I became interested in the date that Jesus was born. This led to several years of research, I quickly realized that there was no valid information that provided any real answers to this question. Since this website is getting some interest, I will post from time to time some of the information I learned during this quest.