The action starts on April 15th when the full Moon passes through the amber shadow of Earth, producing a midnight eclipse visible across North America. So begins a lunar eclipse tetrad—a series of 4 consecutive total eclipses occurring at approximately six month intervals. The total eclipse of April 15, 2014, will be followed by another on Oct. 8, 2014, and another on April 4, 2015, and another on Sept. 28 2015.
"The most unique thing about the 2014-2015 tetrad is that all of them are visible for all or parts of the USA," says longtime NASA eclipse expert Fred Espenak.
What is a blood moon and should you be worried? Here are some facts:
1. The term “blood moon” is not a scientific term.
The website EarthSky says that to the best of their knowledge, “the use of the term Blood Moon to describe a lunar tetrad is of recent origin. It might have originated with John Hagee’s 2013 book,” Four Blood Moons: Something is About to Change.
2. The technical term for the lunar events Hagee is warning about is a “lunar tetrad.”
This is defined as “four successive total lunar eclipses, with no partial eclipses in between, each of which is separated from the other by six lunar months (six full moons).”
3. The four lunar tetrads in 2014 and 2015 are set to appear during the Jewish feast days of Passover and the Feast of the Tabernacles, or Sukkot.
Hagee claims that it is rare for this lunar tetrad to occur on Jewish holy days. However, since the time of Christ, there have been eight tetrads that have occurred on Jewish Passover and the Festival of Tabernacles.
The Hebrew calendar is lunar, and the Festival of Tabernacles is exactly six lunar months after the Festival of Passover, so in a lunar tetrad that begins on the Passover the second, third, and fourth lunar eclipses will always fall on the days of the Jewish feasts. Here are the dates of the eight lunar tetrads since the time of Christ:
1. AD 162-163
2. AD 795-796
3. AD 842-843
4. AD 860-861
5. AD 1493-1494
6. AD 1949-1950
7. AD 1967-1968
8. AD 2014-2015
4. Hagee claims that every time there is a lunar tetrad something significant happens to Israel.
“In each of these blood moons you have something that begins in tragedy and ends in triumph,” Hagee told CBN. He uses the example of the Jews being expelled from Spain in 1492, and simultaneously, Christopher Columbus discovering the New World that year — a new world that would become a refuge for the Jews. However, there was no lunar tetrad in 1492, rather it occurred in 1493-1494. It’s important to consider that Israel did not even become a nation until 1948 and prior to that the Jews were scattered. And Israel is always at the center of “something dramatic” in the Middle East and on the world stage, with or without the “blood moons.”
5. The tetrad moons will not even be visible in Israel or the rest of the Middle East.
According to National Geographic,
“The best views will be from the entire North and South American continents and much of the Pacific Basin, including Hawaii. Eastern Australia should get to see the second half of the show on the night of April 15, as the moon rises during totality. Europe, Africa, and central Asia, meanwhile, will miss the entire eclipse because it will be daytime in those regions at the time of the event.”
6. According to EarthSky, the moon almost always appears to be a reddish color during a total lunar eclipse.
“That’s because the dispersed light from all the Earth’s sunrises and sunsets falls on the face of the moon at mid-eclipse.”
7. Hagee uses a verse from the Old Testament book of Joel to bolster his conclusion that the impending “blood moons” are a sign from God that something cataclysmic is about to happen.
“The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD” (Joel 2:31). The ESV Study Bible commentary explains that universal wonders related to the day of the Lord are “unnatural events in the sky” or “war-like occurrences” on earth, such as fire or columns of smoke. Some believe that these are acts of God’s judgement upon the earth that “will still take place sometime in the future, at the return of Christ.” Other interpreters believe that the language should be understood symbolically “and that no specific literal fulfilment is intended.”