So, you’ve heard that the world is supposed to end on 23 September


It isn’t, of course, but if you’re curious about how someone could come to such a bizarre conclusion, let me lead you through it.

It starts with a Bible verse, Revelation 12.

A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head. 2 She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth. 3 Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on its heads. 4 Its tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that it might devour her child the moment he was born. 5 She gave birth to a son, a male child, who “will rule all the nations with an iron scepter.”[a] And her child was snatched up to God and to his throne. 6 The woman fled into the wilderness to a place prepared for her by God, where she might be taken care of for 1,260 days.

7 Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. 8 But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven. 9 The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.

See? War in heaven, Satan cast down to earth. But why 23 September 2017? The Bible doesn’t say that! We have to go to another source: astrology.

The Bible has a few things to say about astrology, but don’t let that interfere with your bibliolatry!

All the counsel you have received has only worn you out. Let your astrologers come forward, those stargazers who make predictions month by month, let them save you from what is coming upon you. Surely they are like stubble; the fire will burn them up. They cannot even save themselves from the flame… Each of them goes on in his error; there is not one that can save you.

But you need astrology to explain all those strange references to a pregnant woman with stars on her head, a dragon, and signs in heaven. According to some, these are references to constellations (‘ware that link — it’s a manic YouTube video by a loon babbling a mile a minute). The woman is Virgo; the moon is at her feet on that date; the constellation Leo with 9 stars is above her head; Jupiter is passing through her belly, so she’s giving birth to Jupiter. The International Space Station is also passing by, which is supposedly significant, but I couldn’t bear to listen to the video any more to figure out why.

Then there’s numerology.

The September rapture date came from a Christian researcher named David Meade who calculated it would occur 33 days after last month’s eclipse, The Washington Post reported.

Jesus lived for 33 years. The name Elohim, which is the name of God to the Jews, was mentioned 33 times [in the Bible], Meade told the newspaper. It’s a very biblically significant, numerologically significant number. I’m talking astronomy. I’m talking the Bible … and merging the two.

Another factor is Nibiru. Nibiru is a wandering planet in our solar system that the aliens of Zeta Reticuli explained to a human alien contactee through the implant they put in her head. It’s also based on the ravings of ancient astronaut fanatic, Zacharia Sitchin. Anyway, they’re saying Nibiru is going to smack into the earth in a couple of days.

So now you know why people think the world will end on Saturday. The evidence is a series of stretched metaphors from the trippiest chapter of the Bible; astrological alignments; the ravings of a saucer kook; a story from an ancient aliens conspiracy theorist; and numerology. I think you are capable of evaluating the claim from the quality of the evidence, so I’ll leave you to decide whether you need to start preparing for doomsday.

Comments

  1. simply not edible says

    Dammit, I have a date on the 24th…

    What time zone? Maybe if I reschedule to the morning, I can still go.

  2. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    It’s all going to start with María and José getting together in the Atlantic.

  3. raven says

    The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.

    1. According to the bible, satan doesn’t rule in hell.
    That was from a fanfic story by Milton.
    He lives in heaven.
    2. It’s not just in Revelation.
    Somewhere else in the NT, it says satan lives in…Pergamon, Turkey.
    That was 2,000 years ago though. His actual throne was taken by the Germans and is now in Berlin.
    Wouldn’t surprise me if satan lives in NYC or LA these days.

  4. says

    I always figured Revelation was written under the influence of ergot or shrooms. Probably ergot. If it was shrooms it’d be like, “and then we will all become part of one great singing whole, man and mushroom alike…”

  5. Nogbert says

    With the nutter in the WH and the tribe of drooling idiots currently stalking the corridors of power in the US, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if armageddon conditions apply quite soon.

  6. raven says

    The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that it might devour her child the moment he was born. 5 She gave birth to a son, a male child, who “will rule all the nations with an iron scepter.”[a]

    So who knows what this gibberish means? No one knows for sure.
    1. A conventional explanation is that the woman is Mary, Queen of Heaven. God’s girlfriend. And she is giving birth to jesus/god again so he can come back and rule the earth as king.
    2. So the dragon is going to eat jesus/god, the new born baby.
    3. Which never made sense to me.
    If god is all powerful, he should be able to keep a dragon away from his giving birth girlfriend. This is something humans can and would do after all.
    4. So god is a faithless, callous boyfriend.
    Well, we always knew from the bible that he wasn’t very competent, very bright, or very benign. No surprise.

  7. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    Well
    -45 will soon unleash nuclear Armageddon (“fire and fury”) on North Korea. Seems to enacting the professy [sic] himself of the AuntyKrist
    Saturday just might be his date, that this “leaker” is using Bibble as camouflage.
    Poe in effect

  8. says

    The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that it might devour her child the moment he was born. 5 She gave birth to a son, a male child, who “will rule all the nations with an iron scepter.”

    I’m not up on my Game of Thrones but isn’t there a bunch of dragons and stuff? Maybe this is a spoiler for Season Whatever?

    (Actually, I suspect there’s funniness to be mined there: re-vector Revelation against Game of Thrones and you could “prove” that John was spoilering 21st century TV)

  9. unclefrogy says

    well I have always been expecting dooms day any way.
    Not this kind of overly dramatic one with all of this crapola making us sound so fucking important and all, more like a fleet of Vogons bringing pointless destruction.
    more likely some other stupid blunder by humans
    happy day any way.
    I will lift a glass on that day and salute our impending doom
    uncle frogy

  10. UnknownEric the Apostate says

    Aww, can’t it be Monday instead, so I can get a full weekend in, then have a real good excuse to miss work next week?

    “Sorry, can’t come in, Earth’s destroyed.”

  11. jimb says

    Well, this is inconvenient.

    Aside from Monday being my birthday, MrsB and I are going to see Alison Moyet in SF. I guess I need to see if a refund is allowed for “end of world”.

  12. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    Re @13
    Don’t think “lack of evidence” is “evidence of lack”.

    He figured it out from hidden sources

  13. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    Huh. You’d think if another planet were about to clobber us, we’d be able to see it in the sky by now.

    It’s eclipsed by Russell’s teapot.

  14. Rich Woods says

    I’ll leave you to decide whether you need to start preparing for doomsday.

    Fortunately my tinfoil helmet blocks all the nonsense these chiliastic crackpots emit.

  15. whywhywhy says

    I’ll leave you to decide whether you need to start preparing for doomsday

    So you are saying there is a chance.

    /s

  16. says

    Now I understand why the supermarket only had milk for sale with a use-by date of 23 September. Cows know stuff we don’t.

  17. nekomancer945 says

    On top of which, the guy can’t count, “elohim” appears over 2500 in the Hebrew Bible. Obviously fake votes, I mean fake gods, there should be a recount!

  18. voidhawk says

    Hey, so long as we’re tossing around nonsense, I predict the world will end on the 24th. Why? The German Federal Elections.

    Think about it.

    “A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head. ”

    Is that not Angela (angel) Merkel with the 12-starred EU flag behind her?

    “She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth”
    She’s popularly known as ‘Mummy’ in German and on the 23rd she’ll be ‘expecting’ a new government. there have been a lot of electoral ‘pains’ over her immigration position.

    “an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on its heads”
    The far-right AfD are predicted to take between 7-10% of the vote, and the predominant colour of their logo? A red arrow.
    “Its tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth”
    Perhaps this points to a third of the deputies losing their seats?
    “The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that it might devour her child the moment he was born” Nobody will be willing to work with AfD, so maybe they will try to prevent the new government from forming.
    The rest of the reading is describing the political backstabbings and backroom dealings that characterise the battle of forming a new government, but in the end the ‘dragon’ of the AfD will be thrown down. 1,260 days to form a government is a long time, but in Europe it’s not totally unheard of. See: Belgium.

    it arguably makes more sense than the astrological ramblings.

  19. simply not edible says

    @ Voidhawk – I somehow hope that in the Netherlands we might take that Belgian record. I’ll take another collapse in negotiations if it means keeping ChristenUnie out of government.

  20. woozy says

    I have heard the claim several times that Jesus was 33 when he died. I’m sincerely curious where that originated.

  21. blf says

    The alleged reason this kook says the 23rd is the magic date is because it is 33 days after the eclipse. And he already is making excuses for the predictable failure of his prediction for the 23rd, saying the 23rd is the start of an invisible magic process and people on Earth may not notice anything until October, and since things will be different in October, his predication must be correct.

  22. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    I predict that on October 31 various ghosts, witches, and Trumps will be prowling the streets extorting the good people of the U.S.

  23. blf says

    I have heard the claim several times that Jesus was 33 when he died. I’m sincerely curious where that originated.

    This is a paraphrase of some very dense reading which, frankly, was about as interesting as the kook’s delusions. And there are some glaring gaps in logic.

    Apparently, the holely babble indicates the carpenter’s son was tortured to death around the time of Passover, which is determined by lunar observation, and died on the Jewish sabbath (a Friday). During Pilate’s time in office, which is known from genuine historical sources, there are only a handful of years with the appropriate passover lunar phase on a Friday, one of which is in 33 CE. Exactly why none of the other possibilities is considered possible by the 33 CE fantics is where MEGO. And that date is no-where nears being accepted by all. (Not to mention the not-insignificant problem the year of alleged birth is unknown, so precise age cannot be deduced from a shaky claim of year of death.)

    As far as I can see, other than Pilate’s time in office and astronomical calculations, and (probably) that the Jewish lunar calendar was determined strictly by observation at that time, it’s mostly-to-entirely the usual, entrails readings.

  24. blf says

    Addendum to me@35 (sorry, this was accidentally omitted)… There’s also the 29 CE crowd for date of death-by-torture, another astronomically-plausible year, which is preferred by some since, assuming an age of 30-something, puts the alleged birth near or into Herod’s time. Why — the original question — such an age is presumed I don’t know. Probably using the wrong sort of entrails.

Leave a Reply