The moon will appear reddish in several parts of the world on the intervening nights of 27 and 28 September due to a phenomenon called "blood moon" which will see supermoon and total lunar eclipse happening at the same time. It is something that skywatchers and scientists look forward to, but the "end of the world" claim made by some Biblical conspiracy theorists has caused panic.
Some Christian preachers have claimed that something disastrous will happen on or before 28 September, the night the final "blood moon" of the tetrad happens. They have taken advantage of some Biblical verses to urge people to turn to God before the world ends.
Does the "end of the world" claim have Biblical roots?
Yes, there are a few references in the Bible about the moon turning red-like blood before the day of the Lord comes.
For instance, Acts 2:20: "The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and notable day of the Lord come."
Revelation 6:12: "I looked when He opened the sixth seal, and behold, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became like blood."
Joel 2:30-31: "And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth: Blood and fire and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord."
However, the moon mentioned in the Bible may not be connected to the "blood moon" which is just a natural phenomenon and has happened many times in the past and will happen again in the future, including on the intervening nights of 27 and 28 September.
How Preachers Create Fear Psychosis Among Public
Some Christian preachers are claiming that the "end of the world" is possible with the final eclipse tetrad happening towards the end of this month after the first eclipse on 15 April, 2014, the second on 8 October in the same year, and the third one on 4 April, 2015.
Christian minister John Hagee and Pastor Mark Blitz of El Shaddai Ministries have been accused of promoting their respective books "Four Blood Moons" and "Blood Moons: Decoding the Imminent Heavenly Signs" by creating fear psychosis among the public with false warning and claims that disastrous events like earthquake will happen this month.
Mark Blitz even linked the latest tetrad with Biblical feasts – Passover starting on 3 April and 29 September -- coinciding with the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles.
"The last time there was a tetrad was back in the 1900s, and to my amazement, they also fell on the feasts of Passover and Tabernacles," Express quoted Blitz as saying. "When I noticed the years these phenomena occurred, my mind began reeling. The last two times there were four blood moons in a row, they happened, first, right after Israel became a nation in 1948, and then again when Israel retook Jerusalem in 1967."
As if that's not enough, some preachers have even linked their predictions to recent natural and social crises like the migration crisis in Europe; eruption of Mount Aso on Kyushu island; earthquake in Japan and Mexico; wildfires near Sacramento, California; two volcanic eruptions in Mexico; Mount Cotopaxi volcano eruption in Ecuador and flash flood in San Antonio, Texas, among others, according to Express.
However, there is no scientific truth to claims made by pastors and preachers. "Blood moon" happens when a supermoon coincides with a total lunar eclipse and the NASA said the rare celestial event has happened five times since 1900, the last being in 1982, and the next, after this month, supposed to occur in 2033.