There is something uniquely special about a total solar eclipse.
“Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.”
This past summer (2017) in Illinois we had front-row seats to a spectacular celestial event.
The entire state witnessed a solar eclipse of at least 90% totality. Southern Illinois saw a total solar eclipse.
If you’ve never witnessed an eclipse, you are missing something! It is nearly impossible to convey in words a solar eclipse – the sight as well as the emotion that accompanies it.
Our big-time celebrity meteorologist here in Chicago – my friend, Tom Skilling – was in Carbondale to witness the total eclipse. As he was reporting the event live on TV, he actually broke down in tears witnessing the darkening of the sky as the moon slipped completely between earth and sun.
A total solar eclipse is a rare event. It does happen, however. And that it can happen – when the moon completely blocks the sun as seen from the surface of the earth – is, to me, evidence of our Creator God.
The moon is exactly the correct size, at exactly the correct distance from the surface of the earth, to completely block the sun for a brief period of time across a short length of the earth’s surface.
I can’t fathom that simple random chance caused such a spectacular phenomenon. To me it is just more evidence that there is a Creator who has deliberately and specifically put this universe together.
As the Creator, God is the ultimate Authority and power behind all things in this universe.
When Jesus says that the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not reflect light anymore, and that the stars will fall, he is saying that God is in control of all things. I believe Jesus is also saying that these will be signs of the End Times.
This is consistent with Scripture, by the way. For the sun, moon and stars were meant to tell of signs, days, and seasons.
And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years…” (Genesis 1:14).
The light of the sun, moon, and stars failing is one of the signs that Jesus’ return is imminent. It hasn’t happened yet, because while the sun and moon has darkened for brief periods of eclipse, their light has come back. And while stars have “fallen,” they are still up there in the sky.
Jesus hasn’t returned … yet! But he is coming back.
The Church season of Advent is a time that Christians have focused on the Second Coming of Christ specifically.
It seems only appropriate that in focusing on the Second Coming of Christ, we do so with the language and anticipation of the celebration of the First Coming of Christ at Christmas.
The differences in the coming, however, are as different as night and day.
The First Coming of Christ was quiet. Except for an outburst of angels to a group of shepherds in the fields outside of Bethlehem, it was truly a silent night when Jesus was born.
And only a few people knew about the First Coming of Christ when it happened, as well. Shepherds, Mary, Joseph, and, later, a group of magi from the East, King Herod and his court advisors, Simeon and Anna were the only ones who knew of the First Coming.
However, they would tell other people about the Christ, as would just about everyone who came into contact with Jesus during his lifetime. Those they told, in turn, would continue to share the story of the coming of Jesus. By the end of the First Century AD – just 70 short years after Jesus ascended into heaven – practically the entire Roman world knew about Jesus and people continued to share the story beyond the boarders of the Empire.
But when Jesus comes back the second time, no one will have to tell others about it. Everyone will know it. Because the sun will stop shining, the moon will stop reflecting, and the stars will fall.
This world – this universe – will be swept away. It will be the Last Day – Judgment Day. And those who believe in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior will be taken to heaven to be with him forever.
In the meantime, we carry on the legacy of the Christians who have gone before. We are to share the story of Christ and his First Coming while the sun still shines, the moon still reflects, and the stars twinkle in the sky.
Heavenly Father, I confess you to be the Creator of the universe and my heavenly Father. Send me your Holy Spirit so that I may share the Good News of Jesus with everyone I meet while the sun still shines. Even so, come quickly Lord Jesus! In your name I pray. Amen.
©2017 True Men Ministries