The Way It Happened

Revelation 12:1,4 Zodiac and the Bible

Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun … And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, And the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to give birth, to devour her Child as soon as it was born.

//Readers of my book about Revelation recognize this as one of the instances in Revelation that points to astrology. For twenty days out of the year, the sun “clothes” Virgo, the woman, by appearing in her midsection. At the same time, Scorpio’s claws seem about to catch her. The myth was often flavored with the idea of the dragon attacking a newborn child.

It’s easy to see the attractiveness of astrology, though it’s based on faulty assumptions about the universe. Astrology presupposes that the earth is the center of the universe, and that the celestial bodies revolve around it, suspended in space. Additionally, the ancients determined the Zodiac by presuming that the stars existed on a plane, perhaps a curved dome that covered the earth—see, for example, Genesis chapter 1. They could then divide this plane into twelve 30-degree portions.

The zodiac predates Christ by several centuries, and flourished especially in Babylon. In its Chaldean roots, astrology was practiced by the priestly caste and linked closely to religious beliefs. The figures of the zodiac were Babylonian gods. By the time of Jesus, and the book of Revelation, astrology had made inroads into Roman, Greek, even Jewish thinking.

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