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Misleading the Masses: Revelation 12 Sign Exposed – September 23, 2017

Misleading the Masses: Revelation 12 Sign Exposed – September 23, 2017

By Brook Ardoin

I first began this topic by approaching it from a position of objectivity. The result came across as if I was neutral on the subject. After hearing something spoken by Joel Richardson of The Underground[1], I realized it was written in a the very way in which he reminded us we should not do, and in which I see many of God’s teachers doing in the prophetic realm.

Though I am no prophecy teacher, I believe that anyone who the Lord has given a platform in order to reach people with such as AMTM should hold to certain standards when presenting a message. In no way do I want to sound like I am double-minded. The book of James warns of this in chapter 1.

In Joel’s video entitled, “The False Sign of September 23, 2017” (ep 65), which I have linked under sources at the end, he states,

““As teachers we are responsible…It is so critical we are not jumping on the End Time bandwagon. A teacher is going to incur a more harsh judgement because they are responsible for their hearers. Whether we are commanded to be Bereans or not, people are not always Bereans.

People trust teachers in this sort of thing. So it is critical that we are not, once again, jumping on the End Time bandwagon and saying, “This is a sign! This is a sign”! When in fact, there is no sign”.

His research took him all the way back to the 1800’s through recent times, and a number of ministers or leaders in the Body have put out literature or videos, all based on some specific sign(s) pointing to when and why the rapture was to occur at a specific date or time. There were even movements started because of this. All their theories failed terribly, leading to many disappointed or discouraged Christians. We see how this kind of thing can even cause some to fall away from Christianity altogether. It is very important to be wiser than this and learn from all these past mistakes.

What caught my attention was when he warns of any teacher who adamantly spreads a message and says it is from God, or what will transpire prophetically, but at the same time, will also state it may not happen. This is a double-minded man.

Considering his statements, I looked at how I had first worded this body of work, and realized I sounded double-minded. Likely because I may have incurred less criticism if I just “generally” listed all the problems I see on the topic without stating in solidarity how I felt, or what I honestly see within this theory.

That said, what really bothers me is something I see happening by many who are intensely pushing the “Revelation 12 Sign”. In one breath, they speak as if this is the sign in the heavens definitively given by God to warn His people that the Rapture will take place on September 23, 2017; then in the same breath, saying that the Rapture may not occur on that date. This is to protect themselves in case it does not happen, even after hours of using terms that are convincing multitudes that this event unmistakably is from God and means the Rapture.

Again, THIS is a double-minded man. Be very cautious of all who teach this theory as a certainty, yet have made sure when it does not happen can come back to say, “Yes, BUT, look where I said it is only a maybe”. This is not a sound teacher.

There is a difference between someone stating that their theory is only a possibility and based solely upon their own thinking, or stating that it is a sign in the heavens explicitly from God and we should be ready – all in the same breath.

From the first time I heard the “Revelation 12 Sign” theory, it never sat right within my spirit. While reviewing the videos, I noted a number of problems or issues too important to ignore. Due to its popularization, I see many Christians fully believing the Rapture will take place this September 23.

After these concerns would not leave me, I made a list of them. I later began researching, and found many others in ministry who each presented much of the same problems, but additional ones that I did not recognize initially. The links to a two of these videos are posted at the end and I highly suggest listening to them. Both are exceptional videos, but I personally found the one by Ron Matson [7] entitled, “September 23, 2017, The Great Sign – The Forge with Ron Matsen #4” wonderfully compiled and detailed.

I will share my many questions, concerns, or just general knowledge about this upcoming event in regards to the theory being presented. My goal is that you keep an open mind, read in full, and take these issues to the Lord. Remember, no matter how good or reasonable something sounds or looks, you alone are responsible to test all things and to get your answers from God, never from man.

Let’s get started as it is rather lengthy, but if you stick with me, I feel it will give you a completely new insight on the matter.

I will begin by summarizing what is known as the “Revelation 12 Sign of September 23, 2017”. There are a number of videos that go into great detail, some with varying explanation of the theory. That is also a concern – if it is directly from God, all should be teaching a similar theory.

Below is the simplest explanation of the main message of the theory in order to give you a basic understanding and overview.

The sun, moon, stars, and planets will align in such a way that is said will fulfill a 2000 year old prophecy, specifically that of Revelation 12. The greatest attention in the overall theory is condensed within the first five verses of what appeared before John while on Patmos.

There is much excitement over this is some circles, as it is said that this alignment has “never occurred dating all the way back to Adam”. Below, the key elements from Revelation 12 that correlate with the theory are underlined and in red:

And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:

And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered.

And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.

 And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.

And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne ~ Revelation 12:1-5, KJV

In summary, on September 23, 2017, the sun will be within the constellation Virgo, “the woman”. This refers to the woman clothed with the sun. The moon will be located to the bottom of Virgo’s feet as the moon under her feet”.

It is said that above Virgo’s head will be 9 stars, all located in a separate constellation, Leo. The 3 planets, Venus, Mars, and Mercury, will align to the bottom right of Leo. These 3 planets plus the 9 stars equals the “crown of twelve stars” upon her head.

The planet Jupiter is said to fulfill the “birth prophecy”. Jupiter will traverse Virgo undergoing “apparent retrograde motion”, which is the apparent motion of a planet in an opposite direction of other bodies within the system. Beginning December 2016, Jupiter moves to the left of Virgo, traversing back and forth until it moves to a position in her outline set within her “womb” area.

Jupiter, representing the “man child”, will have remained within Virgo for a total of nine and one-half months, or the gestational period of a human baby. Then, some weeks after the 23rd, Jupiter will exit Virgo, relevant to the woman who brought forth a man child”. Therefore, she “travailed in birth” and “pained to be delivered”, as she birthed the man child.

Last, Jupiter representing “man child” is said to symbolize the church Body”. When it exits Virgo, the church is “caught up unto God, and to His throne”. This is what marks the Rapture in this theory. The Body of Christ then “was to rule all nations with a rod of iron” alongside of the Lord.

Sounds rather impressive when just skimming the surface right? Let’s be honest, if you just read through or watch videos on it, this seems like this is it! In your mind, no doubt this event lines up with Revelation 12 so this must be what John saw as the Rapture of the church in this age.

Direct statements of those teaching this are putting forth the idea that GOD is using this event, as read in the constellations and on this specific date, to warn all His children across the earth that the Rapture of His Body is at hand (Note they do not mention the return of Jesus -more on this later).

Before digging into the problems and flaws of this theory, I want to share some observations and general knowledge, or thoughts, looking at this from an outside perspective. The Lord revealed the majority of this information as I asked for clarification on this theory and of my concerns.

We know that God is not only Creator of the stars, but He also named them all (Genesis 1:14, Psalm 147:4). A look into some of the constellations and their names will actually give a general story of His plan of salvation in a very simplistic manner. However, there is not much to be said of the stars describing His salvation plan in the Bible.

Possibly, God may have engineered this plan in the stars as a simple reminder in ancient times before the scripture was available. The stars all “declare His glory” according to Psalm 19:1, as does the whole of His creation.

What we can all agree upon, is that God created everything in the “first heaven” for His good and His purposes. He tells us in Genesis 1:14 that astronomical bodies serve as signs to “mark seasons and days and years”. They also produce light. Hence, we know they aid in measuring time and for navigational purposes.

One of the most well known celestial bodies used as a sign by God was the star of Bethlehem. It played a vital role in announcing Jesus’ birth to the wise men, as well as helping them navigate His whereabouts. There is no debate that God can, has, and will use celestial bodies as signs.

Though wise men, or “Magi”, in those days were trained in reading the skies, the Bible does not tell us exactly how they knew what they called “His star” was the sign of Jesus’ birth. Yet, we know God’s favor was upon them and they were men of God since God fulfilled His purpose using them and spoke to them (Matthew 2:12).

The point here is that the understanding of this star was not given to masses of God’s people. Rather, there were only a select few in which this revelation was made known to by God. No one else we know of spotted that star and understood its significance.

It was one star used as a sign in an incredibly simplistic way. There were no hidden messages involved in which they had to use complex means to understand. It did not take some esoteric word or secret code within the stars for them to understand Gods meaning of it, or in using it for direction. I do not see this as a characteristic of God’s nature in the Bible.

What I see is that He tends to give us His plan, or what He wants us to know, in a simple manner to help us understand His plan. Man is who takes what He gives, then turns something that should be clear and simple into a complex web of intellectualized mess through his own interpretation.

This exact issue leads me to mention one of my greatest concerns in the “Revelation 12 Sign” theory:

Undeniably, the truth is that the Bible, including the words of Jesus Himself, already unequivocally explain the signs to occur, and in which specific celestial bodies they will occur in, at the time of the Rapture and His return.

WHY would God need the “Revelation 12 Sign” event to mark the Rapture date when everything He tells us to watch for in this, He has already given to us in His Word? One needs only to open their Bible, and all the signs, celestial and otherwise, are fully laid out in detailed, easy-to-read, black and white.

If we are obedient in reading His Word, we already know the signs of the Rapture. The apostle Paul even assures us that he need not write them down because we have already been given this knowledge. Because of this knowledge, that time will not overtake us as a thief like with those who are unaware and unprepared (1 Thessalonians 4:5).

If we have this information, as given centuries ago, how does it make sense that a man in 2017 would be given a different set of celestial signs to evidence this in the heavens…especially if it be from God? Moreover, nowhere within these signs concerning the Rapture involves a constellation or planets aligning within them.

Why are a few men going out of their way to present an entirely different plan than the one already in the Word? Yet, scores of Christians have turned to this theory and taken their sights off the signs given within the Bible, and are convinced the Rapture will take place on September 23. You really need to ponder upon all I have given you here if you are one of those who have been convinced.

Let’s look at these signs according to Matthew:

Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:

And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

And He shall send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other”. ~ Matthew 24: 29-31, KJV.

This is just one of the many verses in the Bible that give us parallel accounts of the signs in the heavens at this time. From Zachariah, to Isaiah, to Joel…from the apostle Paul and the book of Revelation, they all give accounts of similar celestial signs, each one of them speaking of the same events as in Matthew 24 spoken by Jesus – and that is the Rapture in conjunction with the second coming of Jesus.

What we conclude is that there will be darkness in the sun, moon, and stars – nothing about bright, shining stars or planets within any constellation. Just because one described the moon turning blood red while many others explain it as simply turning dark, does not mean this is a different sign for a different event. It is safe to say that the moon turning a blood red means it will no longer shine its light…it shall go dark.

Furthermore, I have read articles on this upcoming event within the professional community of astronomers. In one article, according to Christopher M. Graney [2], a professor of physics and astronomy at Jefferson Community Technical College in Louisville, KY, who also runs the college observatory, he states that Jupiter will exit Virgo “as the weeks pass after September 23rd”.

I have seen this reported numerous times. How then can the Rapture take place on that exact date, when Jupiter will not even exit Virgo on precisely September 23rd? If we are to go by the event date, as many are led to believe, this just does not add up.

Another general thought is that so far, I have not come across anywhere in the Bible where the Lord ever instructed anyone to read into the constellations for a message from Him. By reading into it, I mean taking it and having to maneuver things around to find a message; nor have I seen any of the men or women of the Bible speak of the Lord instructing them to read within the constellations to find a message or answer from Him. If I am wrong, please inform me and I will humbly admit my error.

Now I will get into specific problems I have noted in the “Revelation 12 Sign” theory in itself, according to what is being taught, or concerns I see in how they have reached their conclusions.

The Crown of Twelve Stars

In the Biblical story in Revelation 12, it is singularly the woman alone who John speaks of having this crown upon her head. In the “Revelation 12 Sign” narrative, why are the 12 “stars” taken from a completely separate constellation?

In order to make up her crown, they are pulling 9 stars from the Leo constellation. The remaining 3 “stars” also come from outside of Virgo, and outside of Leo. Therefore, they are obtaining stars from outside of what should be part of “the woman” in order to form the crown.

There are a number of stars surrounding Virgo’s head, but none are used to represent the crown. This crown seen by John is part of the woman, not found outside of her, or far from her head, since a crown sits on the head. This is not logical as I see it.

More interesting, there is already a constellation not far from Virgo named “Coma Berenices”. A galaxy cluster known as the “Virgo-Coma-Cluster” is actually a part of galaxies called the “Virgo-Cluster” that switches over to Coma Berenices.

The chief, dominant star within this constellation is named “alpha Com”, which is known as “Diadem”. A diadem by definition is a “crown; a royal headband worn as a symbol of sovereignty”.

 If they are going to steal stars from outside constellations, wouldn’t it make a lot more sense to take from the one next to Virgo that literally means crown and is part of the Virgo galaxy cluster?

In addition, according to astronomers, if you look at Norton’s Star Atlas, there are visibly twelve stars around Virgo’s head – each one having its own name. [3]

 

Why are these twelve stars directly above her head completely ignored?

Of course, the reason the Coma Berenices constellation cannot be used is that it would exceed the 12 stars needed that make up the crown. It was more reasonable to borrow from Leo since its outline is after all, comprised of the 9 stars needed to add to the 3 planets to total 12…, or is it?

In my research into Leo, it did not take long to find something significant. By definition, constellations are just groups of stars that form a recognizable pattern (truth be told, not many are recognizable to me in the least). It is connect-the-dots using stars.

Many are not aware that Leo does not have a set outline of 9 stars. Other common outlines have more than nine. Many astronomers use the 15 star pattern. Other patterns include 10, 12, and up to 22 stars. Here are a couple of common Leo outlines:


 

 

 

What or who determines the 9 star pattern as the one when there are many to choose from? It is the only one that can be used to fit the narrative. In the “Revelation 12 Sign”, this entire theory for the crown is based exclusively upon determining the amount of stars chosen to represent Leo, as well as boiling down to the 3 planets near Virgo’s “head” during that time.

With all I have discussed in this section, let me explain what all of this reminds me of. We did an in-house show some time back where I discussed something called “selective reporting”. What happens is that anything that fits into the narrative is used within the story, and everything that does not fit is conveniently discarded. That is what this reminds me of in selecting what fits and what does not to make the theory hold up.

This is man using a software program called Stallarium to base what they are selling as only the greatest event of all-time since Jesus ascended in the clouds in Acts. I have yet to hear any pushing this theory state that God gave them instruction or a “Word” on this to warn the world this is the sign of the Rapture, or on September 23rd. This is man wanting so desperately for it to be the Rapture, that he is grasping to pull from anywhere he can to fit the narrative.

Another problem in the “Revelation 12 Sign” is the use of planets as stars. You can go on any number of sites written by professional astronomers and find that a star is a star and a planet by any other name is a planet. Simply put, planets are not stars. Their chemical composition and characteristics are not the same and of their own.

In the “Revelation 12 Sign”, 3 planets are added to Leo’s 9 star pattern to total 12 stars for the crown. Something had to be figured in to establish the 12 stars in Revelation 12, so the closest thing are those 3 planets.

Granted, you may see or hear planets referred to as “wandering stars” in the “Revelation 12 Sign” theory. This is what they were called in ancient times because they moved in opposite directions of other celestial bodies, but they still knew that these were planets. This still does not change the fact that a planet is not a star. Not to mention, these 3 planets in the alignment look nothing like where a crown would lay on one’s head.

Jude 13 speaks of ungodly men who deny Christ and their destination ends in darkness forever. Paul refers to these wicked men as “wandering stars”.

This took me to the Greek to understand what Paul meant. Strong’s defines a “wandering star” as “an imposter; deceivers; wanderers; rovers or “planets” (figuratively); meaning they have no set place”.

This is just an interesting side note since many of the “Revelation 12 Sign” videos call the 3 planets “wandering stars”, and the Biblical Greek meaning relates to imposters and deceivers.

Any way you paint it, a planet can never be a star. They are two different celestial bodies. Stars produce light, while planets reflect it. I feel they use this term instead of calling them planets since John said he specifically saw 12 stars. This helps justify using these planets as part of the crown because the word “star” is in there. I previously mentioned the location of these planets in relation to where a crown should be. If you look at any of the images of where these 3 planets will be located on September 23, they are in a diagonal line between Virgo and Leo.

They are not above Virgo’s head, or even located within Virgo; nor do they remotely look like a crown when combined with the 9 star Leo outline. Don’t you think what John saw looked like a literal crown on the woman’s head for him to have the ability to describe it so perfectly as such, down to the amount of stars in that crown?

A Never-Before-Seen Event

Earlier, I mentioned that those teaching this have stated it has never before occurred going all the way back to Adam. This is suggested as a “historical event”. These conclusions were generated by using a computer software program called Stellarium. Many also claim that the position of the sun, moon, and Jupiter as very “unique” in this alignment. Yet, farther research suggests otherwise.

First, let’s see how “unique” the position of the sun, moon, and Jupiter is within Virgo. If you do any amount of research, a number of people, including astronomers, prove that the sun near Virgo, the moon at her feet, and Jupiter within this constellation actually transpire on a more regular basis than what people are being led to believe – and can all be found by using the same Stellarium software. Nevertheless, not many will go out, purchase the software, and put in the time it takes to do the research to vet this information.

Dr. Danny Faulkner [4], author of “Answers in Genesis” states,

“…Jupiter appears in the part of Virgo corresponding to her womb, along with the sun in Virgo and the moon at her feet for a day or two every twelve years or so”.

 

Therefore, we see here that this part of the theory is quite common.

A concern of mine is that when people hear statements such as “historical event” or “never occurring before”, we immediately come away with a sense that this is the very first time this event has taken place as far as the date, the constellations in play, and the specific planets and celestial bodies within the alignment. The question to ask is have all these basic elements previously been in alignment around or within Virgo in September? Before answering that, let me digress…

One day while thinking upon all this, I kept asking the same question… If this is such a historical event, WHY are we not seeing astronomers causing any uproar over it? Even if an unbeliever, or non-believer in Christ, wouldn’t the world of astronomy still be buzzing about it? Regardless if they could make any relation to Revelation 12, this is still supposed to the first andgreatest astronomical event in our lifetime”. Yet, there is silence in the world of astronomy. I could not even find any excitement coming from the Vatican Observatory over this.

Days later, I stumbled upon Graney’s [2] article, and to my surprise, he mentioned why the lack of enthusiasm from astronomers such as himself, even referencing the Vatican Observatory’s silence.

The takes me back to my question, have all these basic elements previously been in alignment around or within Virgo in September? The answer is yes! The only reason why the theory teachers speak of this as historical, all comes down to the 3 planets, Mercury, Mars, and Venus in proximity to Virgo’s “head”, or the precise area of their alignment in the 2017 event. Read closely what Graney writes:

““…the sun in Virgo, the moon at Virgo’s feet, and Jupiter in the constellation are regular occurrences. Internet sources speak of the specific celestial arrangement here as being “unique in human history” or “once in 7000 years”, in fact it is not unique to September 23, 2017. This basic arrangement happened before – in September 1827, in September 1483, in September 1293, and in September 1056…I only searched back one-thousand years, from 2017 to 1017 – there are undoubtedly other examples outside of that time period…”

Multiple planets being at Virgo’s head while Jupiter is in Virgo’s center and the moon at Virgo’s feet is somewhat unusual. But it is not that unusual…No doubt someone could go diving into the history books to scrounge up some event from 1827, 1493, 1293, and 1056 that the September skies of those years supposedly foretold. That’s the way it is with astrologythe reading of the heavens for signs.

“…And that is why astronomers ignore the seemingly momentous celestial arrangement of September 23, 2017, and talk instead about black holes or whatnot”.

Below are the 4 images of the September alignments as mentioned above, with the added 2017 alignment for comparison. (Images produced by Christopher M. Graney from Stellarium):

The constellation Virgo on September 24, 1827

The constellation Virgo on September 6, 1483

The constellation Virgo on September 5, 1293

The constellation Virgo on September 14, 1056

 

The constellation Virgo on September 23, 2017

Take a close look at the third image in September 5, 1293. There you have the EXACT same planets, each in alignment with Regulus (a key factor in the 2017 theory), and all above Virgo’s “head”. It does not get more similar than that of the upcoming September 23, 2017 alignment.

Nevertheless, there are key factors in the 2017 event that differ from these past alignments, but the main point here shows why astronomers are not buzzing about this event. I agree with Graney that the extra 3 planets involved in the event is “somewhat unusual”, but the choice of wording used when presenting this theory leaves us thinking that nothing even close to the picture we will see 2017 has ever taken place in the history of man.

One of the arguments in these past alignments is that Jupiter does not remain near or within Virgo for the approximate gestational period of a baby. Regardless, isn’t this whole thing centered upon the ability of the 2017 alignment to “mirror” that of the picture John supposedly saw in Revelation 12? The length of Jupiter’s stay in Virgo then is not of great relevance in this case.

In all the above images, we can still use the same celestial bodies and their locations to fit the same theory of 2017 in relation to Revelation 12. The sun, moon, and planets, all give the same picture seen in Revelation 12:1. Jupiter is in the same “womb” area, so it symbolizes the same “man child”, while its exit from Virgo the “birth” of that child.

I can even take the images of 1056 and 1483 where Venus (the third planet) is missing in order to symbolize the “crown of 12 stars” like in 2017. All I have to do is use the 10 star Leo pattern and add it to the 2 planets near Virgo’s head and there you go. In fact, the planets in these years would more accurately act as her crown since they are right near Virgo’s head rather than outside of it like in 2017. Everything I just used as examples within those past alignments can give the exact picture and account of the events in Revelation 12, just like what is seen 2017.

Moreover, I stated above in red that a key factor is also the 3 planets aligning with Leo’s alpha star “Regulus” because it means “King Star”. Leo is the “Lion” constellation so it is said to represent the “tribe of Judah”. In 1293 is the exact alignment of the same 3 planets with Regulus, and in 1056 the 2 planets directly align with this chief star in Leo (which I just explained above how we can use the 10 star Leo pattern for the 12 star crown). So these planets aligning with Leo is not something never before seen – and, again, we can see the story of Revelation 12 according to the theory.

Understand that we can take any of these past alignments and many more undocumented here, and as Graney states, “scrounge up some events from these past dates that the September skies of those years supposedly foretold”. It is not difficult to take something and turn it into the narrative one wants to present, adding a manmade interpretation to fit what the masses want so desperately to hear. THIS is why we must use wisdom along with spiritual discernment, taking everything to God and testing it within His Word.

To strengthen the statements of Graney, Christian blogger and researcher, Tim McHyde [5] is also among a list of those who found many flaws in the “Revelation 12 Sign” theory. In regards to this alignment being “historical” to that of Revelation 12, he states,

“…scholars have found that the sky on September 11, 3 BC to show the exact picture of Revelation 12:1…”

For the sake of time, I have not applied the image from 3 BC here, but this alignment is actually a more accurate depiction of Revelation 12 than that of the one in 2017. McHyde goes on to state,

“…the position of the sun does not match Revelation 12:1 which says the sun clothes the woman…the sun is over her left shoulder. For the sun to clothe the woman, it would be on her bodyin the middle where her body is; where clothing goes.”

If you want to see what it should look like, compare that picture of the sky of September 11, 3 BC…”

Our culture has grown complacent in research, wanting someone else to do much of the work for us; therefore, taking anything we hear at face value. I agree with Graney that the extra 3 planets involved in the event is “somewhat unusual”, but the use of words in presenting this theory leaves us thinking that nothing even close to the 2017 event has taken place in the history of man.

Where Is the Dragon?

For the longest time I have questioned where the dragon was, along with the events in Revelation 12:3-4 according to the theory. This is part of the Revelation 12 story. I concluded that nothing in the sky near Virgo could be used to represent the dragon or his actions in those verses, so they were conveniently left out (another example of “selective reporting”).

Others must have complained of this same concern because just a few days ago, a new video emerged with, you guessed it, an explanation on why there is no dragon in the theory; and, it is not because it just is not to be found in the sky.

In essence, they justify this by explaining that the Bible has many places that it is not in order of events, and when first written, it did not have chapter or verse. It goes on into some drawn out examples to prove how the Bible is not written in chronological order. Seriously, is this all that can be mustered up to write off the dragon? I was almost disappointed… almost.

What is suggested is that verse 3 and 4 of Revelation 12 is not in sequential order according to what John saw. Let’s read Revelation 12: 3-4 once again so you can see it is exactly where it belongs:

And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.

And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born” ~ Revelation 12:3-4, KJV.

Must I explain how easy we can see that these events are in chronological order here? The verses mention the dragon standing before “the woman” who was “ready to deliver”, and to “devour her child” [man child] soon as it was born. It is in perfect context between verses 2 and 5 as symbolically telling the story of Satan wanting to kill Jesus once He was born.

One more problem I will add is that if the theory states that the “man child” is the “church Body”, then logically they would see the dragon as ready to devour the church rather than Jesus. In the next section, I will prove beyond doubt that the “man child” cannot be the church Body, but for the sake of argument, I will play along with this theory to make another point.

In Matthew 24:29, we are specifically instructed that all the signs of the Rapture and His return will come “after the tribulation”. In addition, Satan’s attack upon the church comes during what is called the Great Tribulation, which happens before the Rapture. Therefore, according to their narrative, the church is Raptured, or “caught up unto God and to His throne” BEFORE the dragon [Satan] symbolically devours us. This would mean we would escape the Great Tribulation, which is not what the Bible says.

Let me make something clear. If you are a firm believer in the “pre-Trib” Rapture theory, then that is what you believe. I am not here to argue that. Please do not take the focus off this entire article and turn it into a debate on Rapture timing. This is not what this is about. I simply wanted to make one extra argument concerning the dragon, and according to their theory, for any who do believe the Rapture comes “after the tribulation”.

Needless to say, in order for this theory to be accurate of the Rapture on September 23, this would mean a “Pre-Tribulation” Rapture would have to take place since we have yet to see the events in conjunction with the opening of the seals in Revelation 6…these include such events as WW3, death to one-quarter of the earth, and famine and starvation. (Note that this is during the Tribulation and not God’s Wrath – Tribulation and Wrath are two separate things).

Truthfully, this is irrelevant anyway because the “man child” is NOT whom the “Revelation 12 Sign” theory says he is, which is my next area of discussion.

A 2000-Year-Old Prophecy Fulfilled

This is the most important section in this entire article. By proving WHO the “man child” is in comparison to the “Revelation 12 Sign” theory, I will show how it is totally inaccurate due to misinterpretation of the Word, and will completely crumble by the time I am done.

The statement which I have heard from some of the “Revelation 12 Sign” videos is that we are about to see a “2000 year old prophecy fulfilled”. This prophecy deals with the symbolic meaning of what John saw written within the first five verses of Revelation 12.

I will not go deep into explaining the symbolic meanings out there of Revelation 12, but I must touch on a few key areas to prove my reason of concern. The greater majority of theologians, scholars, and teachers of prophecy, all agree that within those first five verses of Revelation 12, what John sees is indeed symbolic of the birth and ascension of Jesus Christ.

I personally and unquestionably agree with this in accordance with scripture.

It is also evident that the “great red dragon” mentioned in verses 3 and 4 represents Satan, or the Devil. The Bible uses the word “dragon” as one of the names to describe Satan. We read in verse 4 that this dragon was before the woman as she was ready to give birth to the man child because he wanted to “devour [kill] her child as soon as it was born”.

Recall that Herod, led by the power of the enemy, began the greatest attempt on the life of Jesus within His first few years of life. He ordered the slaughter of all male children ages two and under in the Bethlehem region. Make no mistake that Satan knew the King of the Jews, and of the world, God’s only begotten Son became the Word made flesh and was born into this world. He knew what that meant for the redemption of man, as well as for him, and was ready to devour given the chance.

Being that the first verses in Revelation 12 clearly take us back to the birth and ascension of Jesus Christ, how then can the “Revelation 12 Sign” theory say it will be fulfilled on September 23, 2017? This is due to the claims that the event points to the Rapture of the church. I have no doubt that Revelation 12:1-5 takes us all the way back to His death & ascension, and is in no way symbolic of the Rapture. This is not a prophecy for this present day, or the future, since the birth and ascension of Jesus was already prophetically fulfilled over 2000 years ago. Also, if it is not related to the Rapture as implied, it cannot be a prophecy about to be fulfilled.

What is written in the remainder of the chapter following the first five verses is what has not yet been fulfilled. These remaining events are End Times prophetic events, or eschatological in nature. In summary, the beginning of chapter 12 has long been fulfilled, while the rest is yet to come.

A paramount concern is how they conclude this theory has not yet been fulfilled and how it relates to the Rapture. This concerns the “man child”. Who is he? Back in the summary of the theory, I explained how many say that the “man child”, represented by Jupiter, is symbolic of “the church Body” who will be Raptured, or “caught up unto God and His throne” when Jupiter is “birthed” from Virgo.

To fully understand, here is a review of the meaning of “man child” in the Greek. This also proves the “man child” cannot symbolize the church.

When looking in Strong’s, the word “man” in Greek is ἄῤῥην with a transliteration of arrēn” meaning a male (singular)”. [Note: the letter “a” also denotes the singular here & in the next definition].

The word “child” in Greek is υἱός with a transliteration ofhuios” meaning a son”. The word “child” in Revelation 12 is not pleural as if referring to many “children”.

Due to the word “man” directly before it, it is specific to “a male son”. Other meanings from Greek in the verse context are “Son of God” or “Son of man”, both specific to the Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ.

It is evident that John is explicitly describing ONE MALE CHILD – this child being Jesus Christ.

If all evidence points to a single male child, [Jesus] birthed by the woman, how could this man child represent the church Body – especially since the church is pleural? This interpretation is not consistent with the Word.

Additionally, in Revelation 12:5 it says, “she brought forth a man child who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron”. The “Revelation 12 Sign” says that in this particular verse, it is speaking of us, the Body of Christ (church), ruling with that rod of iron.

I disagree because in the context of the passages, it is speaking directly about that ONE male child’s rule only. HE will rule with a rod of iron. We can look at scriptures that speak of Jesus doing so such as Psalm 2:9:

Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel”.

If you read it from the start, you know that God is speaking of His Son. True, Revelation 2:26 tells us that if we overcome and keep His works unto the end, He will give us power over the nations alongside of Him…but this is not that time that verse 5 is speaking of. This particular passage is speaking of only ONE ruling with that rod of iron – Jesus Christ.

There are two little words in Revelation 12:5 that are used in this theory to make claim of the Rapture – “caught up”. Most of us know that we get the term “rapture” from the Greek transliteration of harpázō” meaning, “to seize, catch up, snatch away; carry away”. This is what Paul is referring to in 1 Thessalonians 4:17 describing how upon the Lord’s return, “we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them [the dead in Christ who will rise first] in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air”.

Because of John’s use of these words rather than “ascend”, this is how they justify what he sees is the Rapture instead of Jesus’ ascension. To end this quickly, understand that the word “ascend” is equivalent to Jesus being “caught up”. Just look into such scriptures as Luke 24:51, Mark 16:19, and Acts 1:9. In each of these verses, we see Jesus ascending back up into heaven with words used such as “carried up”, “received up”, and “taken up”.

The proof here is that Jesus alone can also be “caught up” into heaven. Revelation 12:5 is speaking of the male son, Jesus Christ, caught up into heaven… case closed.

Date Setting

We continue seeing this through the years – man continuously working endlessly to attempt to figure out the exact date of the Rapture. I have not the time to list all the literature out there dealing in this. Regardless, every time man thinks he has gotten God all figured out, the date arrives and the church remains. That does not mean I do not believe the Rapture will come because I fully know it will, just not on man’s timetable.

As we know, the “Revelation 12 Sign” alignment occurs on September 23, 2017. With each passing day, I see more Believers counting down the days in hopes they will be taken away on this date. Many speak as if they are 100% certain the “Revelation 12 Sign” is proof positive, no questions asked and no research done.

There is one really BIG problem with this. To set a definitive date for this event is ultimately doing what the Word of God says cannot be done.

Here is what Jesus tells us:

But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but My Father only” ~ Matthew 24:36

No man” means NONE…NADA…ZERO. Believing that the Rapture will take place on September 23, or any other exact future date, means His Word is either ignored, or that Jesus was lying. Since any sound-minded Christian knows it is not the latter, WHY have the words of man taken priority over the words of the Master?

Yes, we can read Matthew 24 and many other passages that describe the signs in the earth and the heavens preceding the Rapture and His return. He made sure we are not ignorant of these things. However, though the Word is ripe in detailing these signs, man can only at BEST understand that SEASON and will never know the EXACT DATE.

Only the Lord knows of that date, and that is why God is sovereign and man is not. Have we not learned by now that every time man presumes to figure out God entirely, especially concerning time, he always falls short or fails miserably?

I was a bit baffled in seeing an article today released by hebroots.org stating that we cannot go by the English translation of the words in Matthew 24:36, because Revelation and Daniel give us the EXACT time. That “no man knows the day or hour” is a “figure of speech” and many times Jesus “spoke in parables!”

True, we may be given specific numbers in Daniel’s 70th Week, and once events such as the “Abomination of Desolation” occur, there will be no more question if we are in the thick of those 7 years. We may be able to take those numbers and signs to help give a round about time, but to go as far as to say that Jesus’ own words are a figure of speech and not literal is quite disturbing. THIS is what God’s people are spending their time on.

When looking up words such as “no man” in the Greek, it literally means “NONE”. What about the rest of the passage that is left out? It finishes with, “but My Father only”. “Only” in Greek is “monos” meaning “only; alone; by one’s self; sole or single; alone, only by themselves”.

I am not even going to spend the energy arguing this. If you believe Jesus’ words here are a figure of speech and not to be taken literal, nothing I will say can persuade you otherwise.

Our job is not to spend countless hours worrying about or working effortlessly to figure out a Rapture date. Our job according to Jesus is to be ready, watchful, and attentive.

Do you know what I see happening in all of this? While man is busy and distracted by trying to figure out events such a Rapture dates or His return, the harvest fields are passing right by them. I am terribly grieved that while man focuses so much of their attention and time on date setting through this or that event, the pit of hell is filling by the hour. We better wake up and start making lost souls our priority, because time is running out.

The Rapture and the Second Coming of Christ

Briefly, in the “Revelation 12 Sign” theory, a big problem is how the focus is on the Rapture, but the second coming of the Lord is not mentioned in conjunction. I have seen those who either teach or believe it say that the Rapture occurs at a completely different time than Christ’s return; therefore, the “Day of the Lord”, or second coming of Christ will not take place on September 23, 2017 when the church is caught up.

This topic would take a separate article to cover. When reading 1 Thessalonians 4:14-17 for instance, there is no question that the Rapture and the return of Jesus Christ, or “parousia” in Greek, happen at the same time.

One of the books available that goes into great detail in comparing all scriptures to prove these two events happen simultaneously is entitled, “The Rapture Verdict” by Michael T. Snyder [6]. If you want a thorough book on such events, backed by the Word from a sound author, this is positively a must read.

Some backing and teaching the “Revelation 12 Sign” narrative say that Matthew 24 is not speaking of the Rapture and second coming of Jesus. Michael shows where the word “parousia” is used four times in Matthew 24 alone. It is clear in Matthew 24 that Jesus not only speaks of His return, and the signs thereof when asked by His disciples, but in the same context also speaks of the Rapture using the same signs to appear in the heavens and on earth at this time. He give examples like, “two being in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left”, and “two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left”.

Here is a direct quote from “The Rapture Verdict”:

“…all of this lines up perfectly with what the Apostle Paul was trying to tell us in 1 Thessalonians. When the Apostle Paul used the phrase “the Day of the Lord” in 1 Thessalonians 5, he was very well aware of what Zechariah, Joel, and other Old Testament prophets had written about it. So it should be exceedingly clear what Paul was telling us about the timing of the rapture”.

“… In Matthew 24, Jesus pointed to the passage about “the Day of the Lord” in Joel chapter 2, and just like the Apostle Paul He identified the coming of “the Day of the Lord” as the time when the rapture happens”. (Pages 50-51)

It is evident that we will not have one without the other.

Conclusion

In conclusion, this will likely be one of the most important, definitely the lengthiest articles put out to date. I could have cut corners and saved much time, but I find that with so many Christians looking to this upcoming event as a sign from God of the Rapture, I had to be true to the supporters of AMTM, as well as the Lord, in obeying His instruction.

It is important that I add that there are MANY more key factors and details surrounding this upcoming event that make up the whole of the “Revelation 12 Sign” theory. It would be impossible to put in writing the hours of information on this topic. Granted, I included some of the most essential elements, using material from the frontrunner(s) of the theory.

However, no matter how many factors may have seemingly significant meanings, or used to look eloquent when tying them into the theory (such as meaning of Regulus, etc.); none of it is applicable if it is based off grossly misinterpreted scripture and the underlying meaning is inaccurate… Respectively, the church is not who is caught up unto God, disproving the Rapture in Revelation 12:5; this is counterfactual, therefore everything else revolving around the theory becomes inapplicable.

I pray that I did some justice in providing you with incredible amounts of information that you can bite off and really “chew” upon, that you may begin re-thinking this theory. Most of all, I pray you take it all to the Lord, and not just take my word for it.

I absolutely believe that signs in the sky such at blood moons and solar eclipses are given as messages or warnings from the Lord. I also know if God chooses to use constellations to give us a message, He will certainly do so. Yet, if that happens, it will be flawless and accurate as He is flawless and accurate. If this event has any significant message from the Lord, then that has yet to be determined or revealed. The one absolute is that this is not the message of the Rapture of the church because Revelation 12:5 has no relation to it.

I think many will be sorely disappointed when September 24 rolls around and the church Body is still here. For the past 3 years, I have watched through alternative Christian news, some BIG event that was to take place on September 23. That day came and went without incident. By the next day, it was never spoken of again, and no one was held accountable.

I bet most of you have forgotten about those big events flooding the internet the last 3 years. Every September 23, it never fails. Though there may be some meaningful to occur in relation to these Last Days, I feel I have achieved my purpose in establishing it will not be the Rapture.

In these Last Days, there will be many more Rapture and other important dates set, and if it does not happen, many will end up falling away from their faith, feeling the Lord has abandoned them or His Word is false. This is why we have to be so careful to remain diligent and commune with the Lord daily. We also must be aware of the many voices and distractions out there leading God’s people astray.

Remember… be ready, be watchful, and be prepared. Of the signs of the Rapture and His return, it will not come upon you as a thief in the night, for you already know the signs. Be wise and keep your lamps full, for our redemption draws nigh.

Video Sources:

[1] The Underground: Episode 65 – “The False Sign of September 23, 2017” by Joel Richardson: https://youtu.be/xCUPBf4NI6k

[7] September 23, 2017, The Great Sign – The Forge with Ron Matsen #4 https://youtu.be/5d1aqYPSreA

Article Sources:

[2] Christopher M. Graney – Biblical Signs in the Sky? September 23, 2017 http://www.vofoundation.org/blog/biblical-signs-sky-september-23-2017/

[3] https://philologos.org/bpr/files/c006.htm

[4] Dr. Danny R. Faulkner – “What Will Happen September 23, 2017?” (May 1, 2017) https://answersingenesis.org/astronomy/stars/what-will-happen-september-23-2017/

[5] Tim McHyde – “What Does the September, 2017 Sign Tell Us” https://escapeallthesethings.com/sept-2017-revelation-12/

[6] Michael T. Snyder – “The Rapture Verdict”, pages 50-51.

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