“there will be signs in the sun and moon and stars” –Luke 21:25
The concept of unidentified aerial phenomena is a concept familiar to most people today . We live at a time that aliens and belief in UFOs is part of the popular culture.We are being bombarded with films, documentaries and news about them on a daily basis .It is of great interest then that Jesus warned that one of the signs of his presence will be “signs in the sun and moon and stars”.Unfortunately Jesus didn’t elaborate further on what would these signs look like therefore speculation would not be founded in concrete facts .
For years the Watchtower identified these “signs” as the aeroplanes and helicopters that rained bombs during the 1st and 2nd World War and more recently they acknowledged the fact that these “signs” may include supernatural phenomena.So, is there a way to know more about these “signs”?
One should never forget that the signs that Jesus gave in relation to his second coming had a double application .One during the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. and one during our times.In actual fact the well known Jewish historian Flavius Josephus in his work Antiquities of the Jews provides us with an insight on what these aerial phenomena involved during those perilous times .
Josephus reports that celestial lights appeared for years over Jerusalem (sounds familiar?) before the arrival of the Romans .Also other supernatural phenomena as described more fully:
Thus there was a star resembling a sword, which stood over the city, and a comet, that continued a whole year . Thus also, before the Jews’ rebellion, and before those commotions which preceded the war, when the people were come in great crowds to the feast of unleavened bread, on the eight day of the month Xanthicus, [Nisan,] and at the ninth hour of the night, so great a light shone round the altar and the holy house, that it appeared to be bright day-time; which light lasted for half an hour .
These phenomena were so bizarre that even Josephus was conscious about including them in his work .He was a first hand witness as it seems but not the only one ,multitudes saw these signs.We read in Book VI, Chapter 6, Section 3 (Entire):The Signs That Preceded The Destruction:
Besides these, a few days after that feast, on the one-and-twentieth day of the month Artemisius, [Jyar,] a certain prodigious and incredible phenomenon appeared; I suppose the account of it would seem to be a fable, were it not related by those that saw it, and were not the events that followed it of so considerable a nature as to deserve such signals; for, before sun-setting, chariots and troops of soldiers in their armour were seen running about among the clouds, and surrounding of cities .
So what does it all mean for us today ? We too have been witnesses of the UFO phenomenon ,celestial lights that seem to make their appearance all over the world.We should not be dismissive to the fact that these are part of the signs of the end and also part of the the “great deception” that Paul talked about in 2 Thessalonians 2:11,12 : ” That is why God lets a deluding influence(=great deception) mislead them so that they may come to believe the lie, in order that they all may be judged because they did not believe the truth but took pleasure in unrighteousness.”