The first total solar eclipse in the United States in 99 years to stretch across America from coast to coast is being awaited with a lot of anticipation by scientists, sight-seers and many who believe it has great spiritual significance for the US. Here is a roundup of some published perspectives on this rare event which will only be visible in the US.
The eclipse will trigger a bold new era of repentance for America
On August 21 2017, a total solar eclipse will run across America—an event many intercessors believe is a call to prayer marking the beginning of the 40- day Jewish Teshuvah season of repentance, reports Charisma News
The idea that God would use a sign in the heavens to send a message seems strange to many. Yet the idea goes all the way back to Genesis, where the sun, moon and stars were described as signs for the appointed times (Gen. 1:14).
The Hebrew Torah commentaries included eclipses among those signs. The Talmud stated that eclipses were bad omen, a darkness coming because of sin. However, later Jewish sages modified this view, holding that eclipses are warnings against sin, and an opportunity for prayer and introspection.
The fact that the eclipse comes on Teshuvah, the 40-day Jewish season of repentance leading up to the Day of Atonement, magnifies its meaning.
An invitation to intimacy with God and a warning to repent
“Teshuvah” literally means to return to the presence of God, and the psalm associated with Teshuvah by Jewish Rabbis, Psalm 27, speaks of the benefits of dwelling in God’s presence. However, the second scripture associated with Teshuvah is Ezekiel 33, which warns believers of punishment for failure to warn sinners, and warns sinners of the judgment to come. Thus, Teshuvah is both an invitation to intimacy with God in prayer and a warning to repent and avoid judgement.
Read more in Charisma News
Not reading great significance in eclipse…there are already signs everywhere calling for repentance
While some have suggested the upcoming Great American Eclipse could be a sign of God’s impending judgment on the US, Greg Laurie, influential evangelist, author and senior pastor at Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, California, says that may not necessarily be the case, reports The Gospel Herald
“For me personally, I am not attaching any great significance to a solar eclipse,” he told the Christian Post. “There are many signs that Jesus told us to look for that would alert us to the fact that His coming is near.”
He added, “The fact is, those signs are all around us. Only a fool would ignore the writing on the wall. As far as the solar eclipse goes, I personally don’t attach any great significance to that in particular.”
Anne Graham Lotz — daughter of Billy Graham — says it is an urgent warning to America
The sun will be turned to darkness … before the great and awe-inspiring day of the Lord comes” — Joel 2:31
In a reponse published by Charisma News, Anne Graham Lotz says: A few years ago, I was teaching through the book of Joel when the ancient words of his prophecy came up off the page. I knew with hair-raising certainty that God’s severe judgment was coming on America! I have taught Joel several times since. Each time has served to confirm with deep conviction that God is warning America of impending disaster and destruction.
In light of Ezekiel 33:1-6 that commands a watchman to be faithful to warn others of the danger coming against the land, I feel compelled to issue the warning once again. The warning is triggered by the total solar eclipse of Aug. 21, 2017, nicknamed “America’s Eclipse.” For the first time in almost 100 years, a total solar eclipse will be seen from coast to coast in our nation. People are preparing to mark this significant event with viewing parties at exclusive prime sites. The celebratory nature regarding the eclipse brings to my mind the Babylonian King Belshazzar, who threw a drunken feast the night the Medes and Persians crept under the city gate. While Belshazzar and his friends partied, they were oblivious to the impending danger. Belshazzar wound up dead the next day, and the Babylonian empire was destroyed.
Divine moral warning for America says rabbi
The Biblical plague of darkness will be dramatically replayed next week when a rare solar eclipse transits across the full width of the United States. This astronomical phenomenon, unique in the entire solar system, is described in ancient Jewish sources which one rabbi interprets as a divine warning specifically targeting the United States, reports Breaking Israel News
On August 21, a total solar eclipse will mark a trail from the Northwest US to the Southeast Atlantic Seaboard. The eclipse will occur on the last day of the Hebrew month Av, a day known as Yom Kippur Katan, the “small day of repentance.” The morning after the eclipse, Jews will begin blowing the shofar every morning for a 40-day period of profound repentance leading up to Yom Kippur. This corresponds to the 40 days Moses was on Mount Sinai atoning for the Jewish people.
The upcoming eclipse is exceedingly rare and viewed from a larger perspective, the heavenly bodies are creating a picture that clearly has divine import. Though it has been 99 years since an eclipse travelled the length and breadth of the US, the next such occurrence will be in just seven years. On April 8, 2024, another total solar eclipse will transverse North America, but the visible path will go in the opposite direction, passing from the Northeast to the Southwest.
The paths of the two eclipses form a transcontinental ‘X’. In a strange coincidence, the only spot in the path of both eclipses, receiving a double-dose of this modern plague of darkness, and the point of the longest duration for both eclipses, is a part of southern Illinois known, appropriately enough, as Little Egypt.
Chance to witness one of great mysteries of the universe, say scientists
Scientists are understandably jazzed about the total solar eclipse on August 21, reports Fox News. They hope to learn a lot. But you should be excited, too, because the eclipse will pull back the curtains on one of the greatest and deadliest mysteries of the universe: the solar corona.
As a graduate student at Cornell, I came to know Hans Bethe, the brilliant nuclear physicist who in 1967 won the Nobel Prize for figuring out the nuclear fusion reactions that make the sun shine.
Basically, Bethe found that pairs of hydrogen nuclei fuse – like clay balls, they literally stick together – to create zillions of helium nuclei. The magic-like, nuclear transformations are explosive, releasing mind-boggling amounts of energy, as described in Albert Einstein’s famous equation: E = mc2.
It’s that energy – akin to 100 billion H-bombs detonating every second – that lights up the sun’s “photosphere.” That’s the yellow disk kids draw when depicting a sunny day.