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How I Identified the Star of Bethlehem
I am Jessie Mills, Ph.D.
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EXTANT DOCUMENT. OF FULFILLED PROPHECY

The Sign of the Messiah

How I Identified the Star of Bethlehem

 

© 1999 Copyright by Dr. Werner Papke

 

Reprinted here by permission of the author.  It is also available online at the website address: http://home.t-online.de/home/dr.papke/messiah.htm

 

Foreword by Jessie E. Mills–When my small booklet was first written and published by Alabama Christian College in 1975, I wrote against the background history of Herod as having died in 4 BC.  Since that time, I have found evidence which dates Herod’s death in 2 BC.  I am now convinced, as is Dr. Papke, that for the purposes for which I wrote, “Was Christ Born on December 25th?”  The year is not the issue, but rather the time of the year.  There is no evidence to be found which even remotely suggests that Christ was born on Christmas, Dec. 25th.  Therefore, those who proclaim that we are to celebrate Dec. 25th as the birthday of Christ are misleading us into a practice that will destroy the soul of man.  Rom. 14:23 says, “That which is not of faith is sin.”  I am happy to be associated with Dr. Papke in his lesson reprinted here, entitled, “How I Found the Star of Bethlehem.”  Jessie E. Mills, D.M.

_______________________________________

 

The enigma of the Star of Bethlehem has now been solved.  Latest research reveals it was a new star that suddenly appeared at the “Throne of God” in the very womb of the ancient Babylonian constellation of the Virgin (ERUA) at 6:30 p.m. just after sunset on August 30 in 2 BC exactly when Jesus was born in Bethlehem.

These startling results rule out the widely accepted date 4 BC for King Herod’s death and give way to a new understanding of the evolution of religions, demanding a thoroughgoing revision of Biblical cosmology as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

[picture of magi traveling

toward star here]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A New Star in the Skies

 

For centuries the Star of Bethlehem has stimulated a flood of investigations to identify this most famous celestial phenomenon in the history of man. From the mass of relevant literature three scholarly interpretations stand out:  a comet, a conjunction of planets, and a new star. But, as we shall see,1 only a new star is in full harmony with the Biblical account of the Magi as found in Mat. 2.

The first in modern times who considered the star of Bethlehem to be a new star was the German astronomer Johannes Kepler (1571-1630).2  When on October 10, 1604 he saw a new star which had appeared in the right foot of the snakebearer (Ophiuchus) above the scorpion just 10° from the spot where in the preceding year a conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn had occurred, Kepler erroneously believed the new star could have been brought about by that conjunction and therefore by analogy concluded that the Star of Bethlehem might also have been a new star that appeared some time, after a triple-conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn had taken place in 7 BC.3

That the Star of Bethlehem must have been a new star is confirmed by the unanimous testimony of the early church fathers. The earliest mention of the Star of Bethlehem besides the Biblical report is made by Ignatius, the bishop of the church in Antiochia, who still lived during the time of the apostles and died as a martyr just before AD 117. In his letter to the Ephesians, Ignatius states:

 

How was [Jesus] revealed to the world?  A star shone forth high above all the stars in the skies, whose brilliance cannot be described and which was of a completely new type so that it aroused an amazement.4

 

Even in the fourth century AD, Prudentius maintains that not even the morning star (Venus) had such a glare as the Star of Bethlehem. This testimony of the church fathers of course rules out a comet as well as any planet or conjunction, particularly a conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, for the Star of Bethlehem.

 

The Site of the New Star–

The Promise of Eden Written in the Skies

 

Now if we take for granted it was a new star that prompted the Magi to travel to Jerusalem we are immediately confronted with a serious problem.  Since only a very small part of ancient sources have been preserved it is no wonder that no direct testimony of a new star around the birth of Christ two thousand years ago has come down to us. As we cannot therefore rely on observational material of that time, we have to enter on an entirely new approach of evidence in order to arrive at a solution of the Star of Bethlehem problem and prove it really was a new star.

The question that naturally arises is:  Where did the new star appear in the skies?  Indeed the key to the whole problem seems to be the identification of the very spot in the starry sphere where the new star appeared. This becomes all the more evident when we see that the ancients had observed new stars long before the star of Bethlehem showed up.  In 134 BC a new star appeared in the constellation Scorpius (scorpion) which was so bright that it was visible even in the daytime. The elder Plinius in his Natural History5 tells us it was this star that prompted Hipparch to compose his famous star-catalogue in which he listed each fixed-star visible to the naked eye.

Where then was a new star to appear so that the Magi could know for sure it was the star of the “King of the Jews”?  When I thought it over I realized that there was from time immemorial one and only one constellation which was connected with the hope for the promised redeemer:  viz. the Virgin, being probably the most ancient constellation of mankind anyhow. This celestial Virgin standing behind the Lion and beneath the Great Bear is mentioned already on Babylonian clay tablets of the third millennium BC and was called ERUA.6

What does this ancient mysterious name stand for?  ERUA was written with the four cuneiform signs E4.RU6.U2.A.  RU6 is the sign for the Sumerian word EDIN, rendered Eden in the Biblical Genesis, and being an ancient term for Paradise.  E4 is the sign for “seed” and U2.A together denote “to bring forth, to bear.” Thus ERUA must be translated:

 

“she who will bring forth the seed (prophesied in) Eden

 

The constellation ERUA is alluded to in the famous Akkadian Gilgamesh Epic;7 and in the first tablet of the astronomical cuneiform series MUL.APIN (col. I,11)8 this ERUA is explained as Zarpanitum, which was written with the cuneiform signs ZAR4.BA.NITA2, ZAR4 being another sign for “seed,” and BA for “to bear,” while NITA2 stands for “male,” so that Zarpanitum must be translated:

 

“she who will bring forth the male seed

 

The Babylonians themselves interpreted Zarpanitum as zer banitu, “she bringing forth the seed” as is confirmed by many clay tablets.

This of course reminds us of the Biblical story of Eden. For in Genesis 3:15 we read that after the fall of man - however still before Adam and Eve were driven out of the Garden of Eden - God gave them the promise of a redeemer, the “seed” of the “woman” pointing to the miraculous birth of this “seed” from a virgin.

We now see that this protevangelion as it is called - the first gospel - was not at all a late invention of the Jews, rather it was known already to the early mankind, so that the “woman,” the virgin mother of the redeemer, had even been set among the stars in the constellation ERUA long before Moses came on the scene.

The Egyptians adopted this Babylonian constellation of the Virgin ERUA and depicted it as a Virgin (Isis) sitting on a throne and holding a male child (Horus) on her left arm. The Persians also were familiar with this celestial Virgin sitting on a throne.  As the Magi (magoi) mentioned in the (Greek) text of the Gospel of Matthew belonged to an originally Medo-Persian priestly caste, they obviously were well informed of this celestial virgin being the sign in the skies of a virgin who should bring forth the male seed that was promised already in Eden.

When we look on a modern star chart  for this Babylonian Virgin sitting on a throne behind the Lion and beneath the Great Bear we seek her in vain.  Instead we will find the “Hair of Berenice” (Coma Berenices).  Why is this?  The Greeks later shifted this celestial Virgin down into the zodiacal belt beneath the original constellation ERUA so that it came to lie along the ecliptic between the Lion and the Scales - just where we see her now on every star globe. At the site of the original Virgin ERUA the astronomer Conon of Samos in 246 BC finally inserted the “Hair of Berenice” which we now call by the Latin name Coma Berenices. This constellation occupies the womb of the original Virgin ERUA, and it was just in the midst of her womb that the new star appeared when Jesus was born.

 

Prophecy of Isaiah,  confirmation in the Apocalypse, & what Zoroaster learned from Daniel

 

But why then, we may ask, did the heathen Magi associate the appearance of the new star in Coma Berenices - in the womb of the Virgin ERUA - with the birth of the “King of the Jews”?  Well, first of all we ought to know that in the land of Judah, too, this Virgin ERUA in the starry sphere was the heavenly sign of the virgin mother that would bring forth the promised redeemer. The Jews called her ha-alma,9 the Virgin,” and the great prophet Isaiah in the eighth century BC even gives a prophecy concerning this constellation.10  When in 735 BC the southern state of Judah was threatened by an alliance of Syria and the northern state of Israel, the prophet Isaiah came to Ahas, the king of Judah, and told him that Judah would not be conquered. But as Ahas did not believe the prophet, Isaiah said to him:

 

“Ask a sign of the Lord, thy God; ask it either in the depth, or in the height above11

 

In other words:  down here on earth, or above in the skies.  But Ahas did not want a sign. So Isaiah said:

 

“Hear ye now, O house of David ... Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, the virgin (ha-alma) shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel (God with us).”12

 

According to this Old Testament text God by his pro-phet promised a sign which referred to the whole “House of David” and concerned the fulfillment of the promise given in Eden.  In other words:  the redeemer, the so-called Messiah, should be an heir of King David, born of a Jewish virgin of the tribe of Judah and descendant of David.

But Isaiah in his prophecy moreover obviously connects the sign “in the depth” with the sign “in the height above”:  the birth of the Messiah from the Jewish Virgin (ha-`alma) on earth should be signaled by a sign in the womb of the Virgin (ha-`alma) in the skies.  Indeed, how else could a virgin really be a sign for the “house of David”?  According to the Gospel of Matthew nobody else of the “house of David” among the Jews except Mary herself knew for sure that she had conceived Jesus and brought him forth when she was still a virgin.  Even Joseph, her fiancé, had been no eyewitness of her conception, rather he had to rely on the report of the angel Gabriel.13  Therefore it only was the sign in the skies that necessarily had to signal the birth of the Messiah on earth by a virgin of the tribe of David.  It was not until this sign in the height above appeared that one could definitely know the Messiah was born from a Jewish virgin as prophesied by Isaiah.

A first hint to that being true we get from Matthew himself.  For Matthew in his Gospel quotes from Isaiah to prove that by the birth of Jesus from the virgin Mary Isaiah’s prophecy had been fulfilled. Matthew writes:

 

Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying, Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel, which, being interpreted, is God with us.14

 

Matthew continues that Joseph “knew her (Mary) not till she had brought her first-born son; and he called his name Jesus.”15  And Matthew then hastens to add that, “when Jesus was born in Bethlehem,”there came Magi from the east to Jerusalem, saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews?  For we have seen his star.…”16

If we still hesitate to accept this reasoning, we are absolutely assured by the book of Revelation. John deliberately uses Isaiah’s prophecy once more. In chapter 12 John refers to the birth of Christ with the following words:

 

“And there appeared a great sign (Greek:  semeion) in the sky - a woman (Greek:  gyne; confer Genesis 3:15, in the Septuagint) clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a garland of twelve stars. And she, being with child, cried, travailing in birth, and pained to deliver... And she brought forth a male child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron, and her child was caught up unto God and his throne.”17

 

In this vision John clearly sees ha-alma, the Virgin ERUA, in the starry skies, the sun clothing her while the moon is just standing under her feet.

But how, we still may ask, did the heathen Magi, followers of the teachings of Zoroaster, hear about the prophecy Isaiah pronounced to the “house of David” more than seven hundred years before?  Well, today we know for sure Zoroaster, the founder of the Persian religion that is called after him, lived in Babylon from about 560 BC., at a time, when the Jews stayed in the Babylonian Captivity. The Jews obviously told Zoroaster about Isaiah’s prophecy of the birth of the Messiah from a Jewish virgin of the house of David.  Even the Syrian scholar Abu’l Faragius (1226-1286) states that when Zoroaster was in Babylon he became a pupil of the prophet Daniel, who was deported to Babylon from the land of Judah by Nebuchadnezzar II in 605 BC.  And in his History of Dynasties Faragius further writes that Zoroaster had predicted to the Magi a “new star” would appear in the skies and signal the birth of a wonderful boy whom they were to adore.  According to the Avesta, the bible of the Zoroastrians, the redeemer would be born of a virgin.  When the new star appeared in the womb of the celestial Virgin (ERUA), the Magi knew the Messiah was born from a Jewish virgin, and immediately started on their long journey to Jerusalem in order to adore the new-born “King of the Jews.”

 

Astronomical Test–When did the Star Appear ?

 

Now let us see how the Biblical testimony fits in the astronomical facts.  Matthew tells us that when the Magi arrived at Bethlehem the star was just standing “over (the house) where the young child was.”18  This means the star at this moment was standing perpendicular above them, in the zenith of Bethlehem.  Bethlehem has a northern geographical latitude of 31.7°, it is 31.7° north of the equator. Thus it follows that the zenith of Bethlehem is 31.7° north of the celestial equator as well. Therefore the new star must have appeared 31.7° north of the celestial equator, for according to Matthew the Magi saw the new star in the zenith of Bethlehem. Because of the so-called luni-solar-precession the position of the stars steadily changes with time.  An accurate calculation reveals that 2000 years ago, when Jesus was born, the zenith of Bethlehem passed through the middle of the constellation Coma Berenices, i.e. exactly through the womb of the Virgin ERUA - about 24° off the ecliptic. (As the earth revolved, the new star passed once every day through the zenith of Bethlehem - at a different time each day, since the earth moves approximately one degree a day on its orbit round the sun, so that the new star in Coma Berenices every day rose approximately 4 minutes earlier than the day before.)

When did the new star appear in the very womb of the Virgin (ha-‘alma)?  The new star cannot have appeared until after sunset, for Luke states the “angel of the Lord,” who came to the shepherds “by night,” announced:  unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”19  In Israel a new day began in the evening after sunset, so Jesus must have been born in the evening after the sun had sunk beneath the horizon.

From Rev. 12 we learn that at the birth of the “male child” the sun clothed the woman “in the sky.”  So the sun running in the ecliptic must have been midway under the Virgin at this time (Fig. 1).  The new star in the womb of the celestial Virgin therefore cannot possibly have appeared above the eastern horizon that evening.  It must have been visible above the western horizon of Bethlehem.

The new star appeared 31.7° north of the celestial equator in the midst of her womb.  This being exactly the center of the celestial Virgin, we only need to drop a perpendicular from the new star in the mid-womb of the Virgin on to the ecliptic in order to get the exact position of the sun in the ecliptic at the moment the new star appeared, for the sun was just clothing the woman.  We find out that the longitude of the sun then was 154°, i.e. the sun still was 26° off the autumnal point.  (Fig. 1 below)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[picture of the virgin –

ERUA – Figure 1 here]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fig. 1 The Star of the Messiah was a new star that appeared in the very womb of the Virgin ERUA 31.7° north of the celestial equator in the close vicinity of the Galactic North Pole at the “Throne of God” just after sunset in the evening of August 30, 2 BC., when Jesus was born. At that time the sun was “in” the Virgin, while the moon was standing under her feet, and all classical planets (except Saturn) had gathered with the Virgin. The constellation of the Virgin (ERUA) has been reconstructed by the author from sources dating from the third millennium BC.  Even the garland of twelve stars on her head (Rev. 12:1) is visible to the naked eye. (The Galactic North Pole marked by a small circle at the left breast of the Virgin.)

 

While the woman was clad in sunbeams, John saw the moon standing under her feet. The moon was not far off the sun. Because the feet of the Virgin were located at 163° and 164° ecliptical longitude (Fig. 1) the moon must have been near 164° when the male child was born.

Exact calculation reveals the astronomical conditions of John’s vision are only valid in the year 2 BC.  From 12 BC down to 1 BC, only the year 2 BC fits these facts. In all the other 11 years either the sun was not “in” the Virgin or the moon was not under her feet (Table 1 below).

 

                  

 Ecliptical Longitude of

    Year         Day (Julian)            Sun                  Moon

   (BC.)       Elul 1   Tishri 1 Elul 1 Tishri 1  Elul 1 Tishri 1

      12          21.08.     20.09.     146°      175°       162°      194°

      11          10.08.     09.09.     135°      164°       150°      183°

      10                        29.08.                  153°                    172°

      09          17.08.     16.09.     142°      172°       155°      192°

      08          07.08.     05.09.     132°      160°       149°      174°

      07                        26.08.                  151°                    169°

      06          16.08.     14.09.     140°      169°       162°      187°

      05                        02.09.                  158°                    169°

      04                        23.08.                  148°                    168°

      03          12.08.     10.09.     137°      165°       157°      178°

      02                        30.08.                  154°                    165°

      01          19.08.     17.09.     144°      172°       165°      185°

 

Table 1 (opposite page)

Ecliptical longitude of sun and moon on the evening of Elul 1 and/or Tishri 1 from 12 BC to 1 BC.  The projection of the new star in the middle (uterus) of the Virgin onto the ecliptic gives 154° for the position of the sun in the ecliptic. The feet of the Virgin anyway are at 163° (Gamma Virginis) and 164° (Delta Virginis) ecliptical longitude.  According to the vision of John in Rev. 12 at the time of the birth of the Messiah the moon must have been near 164° ecliptical longitude. The table shows these conditions in the whole period from 12 to 1 BC are only valid in the year 2 BC.

 

The received position of the sun - 154° longitude–corresponds to August 30 (Julian date) in 2 BC.  When the new crescent of the moon stood about 11° further east under the feet of the Virgin, the 1st day of the month Tishri or the Jewish New Year’s Day (Rosh ha-shana) began.

We now even can determine the hour when Jesus was born on this 30th day of August in 2 BC.  For, as mentioned above, the male child must have been born when the sun had already sunk under the western horizon of Bethlehem while at the same time the new star in the womb of the Virgin must have still been visible above the western horizon (Fig. 1). The sun set at 6:26 p.m. that evening, and the new star disappeared at 8:15 p.m. under the horizon. Between these time limits the new star appeared, and the King of the Jews was born!  But as the Magi were east of Bethlehem when they saw the new star appear in the west, it must have been immediately after sunset; otherwise they could not have seen it that evening. It would have already been under their western horizon. Thus Jesus was born about 6:30 p.m., August 30, 2 BC.

 

When did the Magi arrive at Bethlehem?

 

The Magi did not worship Jesus on the night of August 30, when the shepherds from Bethlehem saw the new-born child lying in a manger.  For their journey from the east the Magi probably needed several months. On the evening when the star appeared it could only be seen about one and three quarters hours above the western horizon of Jerusalem and Bethlehem.  However, Matthew reports the star accompanied or led the Magi “till (!) it came and stood just over (the house) where the young child was20 - in the zenith of Bethlehem.  (The star did not go before them, as usually maintained, for proago, the Greek verb, used here in a transitive sense, primarily means to lead or accompany, and because Bethlehem is five miles south of Jerusalem, the Magi went south while the stars went from east to west as did the new star in Coma Berenices.)

Now the earliest possible date at which the Magi could have seen the star in the zenith of Bethlehem was in the morning just before sunrise, when the star had risen at midnight from the eastern horizon and - for the first time - advanced the zenith just at the very moment at dawn when by the beams of the rising sun the star faded away. This is, however, exactly the time when the Magi must indeed have seen the star in the zenith of Bethlehem. For taken literally the text of Matthew implies that the star only led the Magi up to the moment when it stood in the zenith perpendicular above the house where the child was - and not one second longer. When the Magi left the palace of King Herod in Jerusalem at about five o’clock in the morning the new star in Coma Berenices already stood high in the sky and lead them on their two hours’ ride to Bethlehem, which was about five miles south of Jerusalem; during that time the star advanced 30° further west towards the zenith of Bethlehem, until finally it stood exactly above them, and immediately after that faded away when the sun was rising in the east.

At this very moment the Magi stopped and then went straight into the house in front of which they had just arrived. We thus get that the Magi arrived before the house in Bethlehem on November 28 (Julian date; ecliptical longitude of the sun:  244°) at about 6:57 a.m. - three months after Jesus had been born.  November 28, 2 BC corresponds to the last day of the Jewish month Kislev.  Four days before that day the feast of Chanukah had begun on Kislev 25, which was celebrated eight days.  This means that the Magi arrived in Jerusalem and Bethlehem just in the midst of the Chanukah festivities.

 

How I Found the Throne of God

 

But there remains one more fact which has been completely unknown to us and which I cannot pass over here.

As mentioned above, the constellation of the Virgin ERUA was alluded to in the famous Gilgamesh-Epic, too. From this Epic, which astronomically refers to the starry skies of Babylon in the third millennium BC., we learn that Gilgamesh at this very site of the celestial Virgin could see a “mountain” on which there dwelt the “gods” and where the Virgin was sitting on her “throne” (see my book about the Gilgamesh-Epic, indicated in note 7 further down). Now just here in Coma Berenices we can find the Galactic North Pole, the farthest north of our Galaxy whereof our solar system is but a tiny part. So here in the farthest north the celestial Virgin sits enthroned as it were above the universe.  And this is exactly why the Babylonians already called her the “queen of heaven.”  The “gods” Gilgamesh saw assembled here on a “mountain” in the farthest north of the universe correspond to the “angels” of the Bible, called “sons of God” there.  And the book of books reveals to us, that at this very site high above the stars there is situated the “throne of God” and that the angels come to this mountain in order to present themselves before the Lord.21  The prophet Isaiah calls this mountain the “mount of the congregation” of the angels, and he locates it “in the farthest north (Zaphon).22

This “mountain of the gods” above which there is the throne of the Highest, is mentioned by Ezekiel23 as well, and it is attested with the Canaanites too. According to the texts from Ugarit, Baal, the son of El, the highest god, has his throne on the “summit of the mountain of the north (Zaphon).”  The Indians call this mountain in the farthest north of the universe Mount Meru, the Himalayas being its representation on earth.  On the summit of Mount Meru Brahma, the highest god, has his throne, and Indra and the other gods reside on it. This mountain of the gods is found in Persian, Greek and Nordic mythologies as well.

So when the new star appeared just here in the farthest north of the universe in the womb of the celestial Virgin, the Magi, who were well acquainted with these ancient notions, can only have concluded, that the Messiah directly came from the “throne of the Highest” which is in complete harmony with the Biblical record.

Yes, even Luke in his Gospel (1:76-79a) indirectly points to the appearance of the new star in the farthest north of the universe when Jesus was born. Luke states that Zacharias after the birth of his son John the Baptist, the forerunner of Jesus, suddenly “was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied,” saying:

 

“...And thou, child (John), shalt be called the prophet of the Highest; for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare his ways; to give knowledge of salvation unto his people by the remission of their sins, through the tender mercy of our God, whereby the rising from on high hath visited us, to give light to them that sit in darkness...”24

 

Zacharias here clearly refers to Isaiah’s prophecy (7:14, and to 9:1ff., too) concerning the sign of the Messiah that should appear “in the height above” at the throne of God when on earth the redeemer was born by a Jewish virgin.  In the Greek text of Luke 1:78, Zacharias (for “rising”) uses the same word anatolé which the Magi use in Matthew 2 when they come to Jerusalem, saying:  Where is he that is born King of the Jews?  For we have seen his star in the rising (en te anatolé)...” Both passages together unanimously prove that the “rising” (anatolé) of the Star of the Messiah does not mean its rising from the eastern horizon, rather it means that it suddenly broke through in the farthest north at the throne of God in the womb of the celestial Virgin.

In fact, as we already know, the new star in Coma Berenices appeared above the western horizon on the evening of August 30, 2 BC.

 

The Second Advent of Christ–Balaam’s Star and the Sign of the Son of Man in the Sky

 

That in Matthew’s report of the Magi, anatolé means a “break through” of the new star, is corroborated by the prophecy of Balaam as well. This heathen seer one and a half thousand years BC prophesied of a “Star” that “shall come out of Jacob.”25  Now in the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament, “come out” is translated with the verb anatéllo, from which the noun anatolé is just derived.

The prophecy of Balaam moreover leads us straight down to the day of the second advent of Christ. Again and again this Star of Balaam has been referred to the Star of Bethlehem when Jesus was born. However Matthew, though he is eager to quote Old Testament prophecies whenever he can in order to prove that they have been fulfilled, does not even mention a word of Balaam. For the words of Balaam unequivocally refer to the time of “the latter days,”26 as Balaam himself reveals, i.e. to the time when the dominion of the nations will find an end by the sudden return of the Messiah. Three and a half thousand years ago Balaam therefore prophesied that the return of Christ will be signaled by a star that will suddenly appear in the sky. As according to the Biblical account Jesus ascended to the throne of God 40 days after his resurrection, and shall return from there, the Star of Balaam anyway must appear in the constellation Coma Berenices at the Galactic North Pole, the very spot in the starry sky where two thousand years ago a new star appeared as well when Jesus was born, i.e. at the throne of God.

This Star of Balaam obviously will be nothing else but the mysterious “sign of the Son of man”27 which is to appear in the sky just at the moment when Jesus will be descending to the earth once more.

 

Dust in “Berenice’s Hair” or

The Latest Scientific Evidence

 

In conclusion I should like to point out a sensational discovery in the universe that was made only recently. It sheds new light on our identification of the star of Bethlehem and confirms it in ways unimagined before.

As we know now, the star of the Messiah was a “new” star. This star suddenly appeared shining brightly in the evening of August 30 in 2 BC in the lap of the ancient heavenly image of the virgin mother of the Redeemer–in the middle of the constellation of the Virgin ERUA in Coma Berenices. Thus the heavenly sign of the birth of the Messiah on earth by a virgin of the house of David as prophesied by Isaiah eight centuries earlier was fulfilled.

According to today’s astrophysical theories, this “new” star is to be classified as a supernova, i.e. a star that has existed in space for eons far from our Milky Way. Then the star suddenly exploded and shone millions of times brighter. However–due to its great distance from our solar system and the finite speed of the light emitted by the star–it took millions of years before it became visible to the Magi as a bright star in the sky.

According to Matthew, the new star, which shone forth brightly at the galactic north pole near the Throne of God, was visible with the bare eye for another three months, until the Magi came to Bethlehem. Then, like any other “new” star, it faded until it finally could not be recognized anymore. But this does not mean that the star disappeared without a trace in space. According to current astronomical understanding, the part of the matter that had been hurled into space at the explosion of that star, now reveals itself as cosmic nebula. For example, the well-known Crab nebula in the constellation of the Bull (Taurus) allegedly testifies even today of the supernova of 1054 AD.  The remaining matter of a supernova in the form of a rotating neutron star of extremely high density–also known as pulsar–is expected to send out electromagnetic impulses even after thousands of years. Based on this understanding, historically documented supernovas are said to have been clearly identified through measuring the impulse radiation at the corresponding locations in the sky. In addition, the remainders of other supernovas were discovered by the same means.

From this would obviously follow that the star of Bethlehem–the supernova in “Berenice’s Hair” (Coma Berenices) from 2 BC–could today be identified as a pulsar by the same means.  Indeed, after the publication of the German edition of this book, astronomers have been eagerly looking for the remainders of the star of Bethlehem in “Berenice’s Hair”–but without success.  The Berliner physicist Herrmann took the occasion to publish a book in which he disproved the identification of the star of Bethlehem.  In his book, he alleges a priori that the Gospel writer Matthew fraudulently inserted “a star that in reality did not exist into the biography of Jesus.”  He also considers the century-old search for a real astronomical explanation of the star of Bethlehem as a futile undertaking.  The apparently decisive refutation of the “new” star of the Messiah in Berenice’s Hair is that “at the location of the alleged star of Bethlehem, no trace of Papke’s supernova can be found, even with a wide interpretation of the coordinates supplied by Papke.”  Herrmann sums up his findings as follows:  “Thus we inevitably arrive at the conclusion that this new hypothesis about the star of Bethlehem is another fairy tale story that is thwarted by reality.”  This, though, would discredit Jesus of Nazareth as the promised Messiah.

However, shortly after Herrmann’s dismissal of the central message of the stars and the Bible, German and Finnish astronomers made a discovery that requires radical changes to science’s understanding of space. Using the Infrared Space Observatory (ISO), they detected dust for the first time in the apparently empty space between the galaxies. Of all places, this discovery was made between the galaxies in the big cluster of Coma Berenices. Up to now, astronomers assumed intergalactic space contained only invisible gases of extremely low concentration. The discovery of intergalactic dust implies that the emission of distant galaxies and quasars is absorbed by the same intergalactic dust so that we don’t even get to see it on earth.  We see only a small part of space.  The universe is considerably larger than what we see through telescopes. Thus it is only logical that we cannot detect any residual emission of the supernova of August 30 in 2 BC–if it even was a supernova in the sense of modern astronomy.

The discovery of intergalactic dust also means that the “mount of the congregation” (Isaiah 14:13) and the “Throne of God” (Isaiah 6:1ff., Revelation 3:21, 4:2ff.) in the farthest north of the universe–far beyond Coma Berenices–will remain hidden from any doubters and mockers. So they will continue to doubt or mock until Jesus will descend for the second time from the Throne of God to earth. Of course, this will not take Jesus millions of years, as it should according to our modern worldview. Then at the latest, we will have to revise our modern cosmological understanding–and get to know a reality far beyond the confines of our current worldview.

 

ENDNOTES

1. For a detailed investigation see:  Papke, Werner:  Das Zeichen Des Messias.  Ein Wissenschaftler identifiziert den Stern von Bethlehem. ISBN 3-89397-369-9. Bielefeld 1995

2. Kepler, J.:  De Stella Nova in Pede Serpentarii. Francofurti 1606. Reprint in:  Gesammelte Werke, t. 1, pp. 313-356

3. Kepler, J.:  De vero anno aeternus Dei Filius humanam naturam in utero benedictae Virginis Mariae assumpsit.  Francofurti 1614. Reprint in:  Gesammelte Werke, t. 5, pp. 7-126. Munich 1963

4. Ignatius:  Ad Ephesios, 19

5. Plinius, Natural History, II, 95

6. Papke, W.:  Korrespondierende Kulminationen und heliakische Aufgänge in MUL.APIN, in:  Oriens Antiquus XIX (1980), 193ff.

7. Papke, W.:  Die geheime Botschaft des Gilgamesch. 4000 Jahre alte astronomische Aufzeichnungen entschlüsselt. ISBN 3-89350-551-2. Augsburg 51996

8. See tablet BM 86378 of the British Museum, in:  Cuneiform Texts (CT) 33. London 1913

9. Not to be confounded with the Zodiacal sign of the Greek and Latin Virgin (Virgo) which the Jews called betula.

10. Isaiah 7:11-14; cf. 9:2-7

11. Isaiah 7:11

12. Isaiah 7:13,14

13. Matthew 1:18-25

14. Matthew 1:22,23

15. Matthew 1:25

16. Matthew 2:1,2

17. Revelation 12:1,2,5

18. Matthew 2:9

19. Luke 2:8,9,11

20. Matthew 2:9

21. See Job 1:6; 2:1; 38:7

22. Isaiah 14:13

23. Ezekiel 28:14,16

24. Luke 1:67.76-79

25. Numbers 24:17

26. Numbers 24:14

27. Matthew 24:30

 


 

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© Copyright 2015 by Jessie Mills. All Rights Reserved by the author, Jessie E. Mills, Jr. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or otherwise, without the prior express written permission of the publisher, except for brief quotations in critical reviews or other publications. Such quotations must be used with proper reference to their context and give appropriate credit to their authorship.