WND Accuses John Hagee of Ripping Off End Times Theory

Blood Moons

From WND:

The blood moons tetrad is a mysterious astronomical occurrence discovered by a Seattle-area pastor who postulated beginning in 2008 that it might portend spiritually significant developments for Israel and the rest of the world because of its appearance on the biblical “feast”days of Passover and Tabernacles.

But, in a new movie called “Four Blood Moons,” San Antonio mega-pastor John Hagee, author of a New York Times bestselling book about the “blood moons phenomenon,” claims he is the discoverer.

…The discovery, however, was made by pastor Mark Biltz of El Shaddai Ministries of Bonney Lake, Washington, seven years ago

“Mark Biltz has given Hagee the benefit of the doubt for too long” said Joseph Farah, chief executive officer of WND.com and WND Books, giving his opinions. “He overlooked a grave slight by Hagee in the way he handled his book – not crediting Biltz as the man who discovered the blood moons phenomenon…. The truth is, Biltz had thoroughly researched and presented the blood moons, and Hagee brought nothing new to the subject – treating it, comparatively, in the most superficial way in his own book… This is one of the definitions of plagiarism – misrepresenting the work of someone else as your own.”

I wrote about Hagee’s book Four Blood Moons in October 2013; I noted that Hagee had jumped on Biltz’s bandwagon and asked why Hagee hadn’t realised the supposed significance of the “blood moons” himself in any of his previous “end times” potboilers, given his supposed expertise. Details of the new film of the same name can be seen here; according to the blurb:

FOUR BLOOD MOONS combines scripture, science, history and big-screen live action spanning centuries, including previous similar lunar occurrences and the earth-shaking changes around them. It also examines our current four blood moon cycle—and its possible meaning for Israel, the Middle East and the world.

An array of historians, religious scholars and commentators appear in FOUR BLOOD MOONS and offer their insight—filmmaker, speaker and author Dinesh D’Souza; radio host and author Dennis Prager; and noted author and historian David Barton to name just a few.

The trailer portrays Columbus in 1492, alongside sentimental reconstructions of the foundation of modern Israel and the Six-Day War; apparently there was a “blood moon” in 1493, which was significant because “Spain’s rulers had expelled all Jews and Columbus had discovered America, an eventual haven for the Jewish people”. In reality, of course, Jews expelled from Spain settled in other parts of Europe and North Africa, but Hagee wants to link the USA and Israel has having some sort of divinely ordained history. The trailer also has shots of scientists in protective clothing, doubtless to play on fears over Ebola: in October, Hagee warned that the disease was God’s judgment on America for Obama’s Israel policies.

At the time when the book appeared, WND was happy to promote it as a way to raise interest in Biltz’s theory, which Biltz was expounding in interviews and sermons. WND then published a book by Biltz in 2014, entitled Blood Moons: Decoding the Imminent Heavenly Signs, for which Farah provided a Foreword.

WND continues:

…Asked if he got any inspiration from Biltz, who had chronicled in detail his findings on the blood moons four years before sharing them with Hagee in 2012, he responded: “If you read my book, it opens when I’m in Washington on a speaking tour for the night to honor Israel. Pastor Biltz is the sponsoring pastor… And he asked me, ‘Have you ever considered the stars as having a spiritual significance?’ And I said, ‘Well, other than what’s written in the word of God, no.’ He said, ‘Well, I think that God is using the stars as recorded in the book of Genesis to communicate with us.’… We then went home and I got on my computer and started looking up blood moons. And I really didn’t find anything until I plugged in the issue of 1948 and blood moons. And there popped up the NASA statement about the blood moons appearing in the history of Israel.”

In a rare acknowledgement of the need for accuracy, WND points out that “there were no blood moons in 1948… The blood moons tetrad confirmed by NASA’s website took place in 1949.” I’ll add that while NASA’s website has statistical data on lunar eclipses, I’m willing to take a bet that there has never been any statement relating to “the history of Israel”.

This year’s lunar eclipses appear to have sparked widespread apocalyptic fervour, despite the fact that their supposed important has to be loosely extrapolated from a Bible verse about supernatural disturbances:

I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and billows of smoke.  The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord.

That’s from Joel chapter 3, and it is quoted by Peter in the Book of Acts as an explanation for the events of Pentecost. A tetrad of regular lunar eclipses on Jewish feast days is not discussed anywhere. It should also be noted that the eclipses will not be visible in Israel, although one enthusiast believes that the North Pole is has special spiritual significance; Charisma News reports:

“The concurrence and rarity of this natural event, together with the times in which we live, indicates the finger of God,” said Gidon Ariel, an Israeli Jew and co-founder of Root Source, an online platform where Christians can learn Jewish concepts, ideas and thought, and more deeply understand the roots of their faith.

A total solar eclipse at the North Pole on the first day of spring occurs once every 100,000 years. For it to occur on the first day of the first month of the biblical calendar year is, however, entirely unprecedented since this is only the year 5775 according to Jewish tradition, meaning that there has never been such a solar occurrence in human history.

Root Source founders Bob O’Dell, a devout Christian, and Gidon Ariel, an Orthodox Jew, are both calling all Christians and Jews to join them for two minutes of prayer as a response to the solar eclipse… “I will be praying Isaiah 11:9 for two minutes at the Western Wall in Jerusalem at 12:18 PM local time,” Ariel said.

WND is also promoting another numerological “End Times” theory as complementary; this is Jonathan Cahn’s teaching on the The Mystery of the Shemitah, which strongly infers that the US is headed for disaster in September 2015, as part of a supernatural seven-year cycle:

The first shaking is 9/11. Second shaking is the economic collapse. When does it happen? It happens in 2008… The greatest day happened at the end of September 2008. It was the greatest stock market crash in the history of America.

However, not all conservative Christians are on board, and a site called Berean Call has railed against “fearmongering false prophets”. This prompted a rebuke from Farah:

The criticisms also appear to be a breach of the biblical admonishment in Matthew 18:15-20, Farah said. That scripture says “if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone.” In other words, tell him in private, not in front of the whole congregation or, in this case, in front of the world on the Internet.

Unless, of course, your brother is competing against you with a rival End Times book on the same apocalyptic theory.

2 Responses

  1. I remember when Biltz brought the blood moons thing to light in 2008. Then when that book by Hagee came along, I wondered if he credited the original discovery to Biltz. Sounds like my skepticism towards Hagee was warranted. Hell, I doubt he himself even wrote the book with his name on it.

    I am surprised that it took so long for the plagiarism charge to surface.

  2. I would have thought that if they were omens about Israel, they would have been visible in Israel.

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