According to NASA two total solar eclipses are scheduled to entirely shadow the mainland of America. The first is on August 21, 2017 and the second is on April 8, 2024. This is a fairly rare occurrence. The Wikipedia page for the upcoming 2017 eclipse states: “This eclipse will be the first total solar eclipse visible from the United States since 1991 (which was seen only from part of Hawaii), and the first visible from the contiguous United States since 1979.” These two upcoming eclipses will be less than seven years apart. Ok, now here’s were it gets interesting. If you take the paths of these two eclipses and overlap them over America, it creates an X. The eclipse2017.org site has images of where the center of this crosshair lies. Take a look at it here. Quoting from the page: “Actually, to be fair, the overlap of the paths of totality of these two eclipses lies in three states: Illinois, Missouri, and Kentucky.” Interesting. Joseph Smith was imprisoned in both Missouri and Illinois. He was murdered by a mob in Illinois.
Top selling author Jonathan Cahn released a book titled “The Harbinger: The Ancient Mystery That Holds the Secret of America’s Future” in 2012. In this book he cites Isaiah 9:9-10 “And all the people shall know, even Ephraim and the inhabitant of Samaria, that say in the pride and stoutness of heart, The bricks are fallen down, but we will build with hewn stones: the sycomores are cut down, but we will change them into cedars.” He convincingly argues that this scripture was fulfilled in the events surrounding the attack on the Twin Towers in NYC. His conclusion is that this attack was a harbinger of things to come to the unrepentant America. It is what he calls a warning shot. (You can listen to his full presentation on the topic here.) What Mr. Cahn fails to do is put any emphasis on who it is that is rebelling and in danger of God’s wrath. Verse 9 tells us plainly that this is Ephraim. Ephraim is America! Many Mormons know this, because this is one of the things which Joseph Smith taught. In fact, Brigham Young is known to have stated that Joseph Smith was “a pure Ephraimite.” America is more precisely composed of the scattered Ephraimites or Gentiles.
Ok, so what do solar eclipses have to do with prophecy? Eclipses in ancient times were often looked at as bad omens. There were a few recorded cases of eclipses happening shortly before earthquakes. These events left an impact on the minds of the people of those times which they no doubt passed onto future generations. Here is one recent example of a lunar eclipse being followed by an earthquake in our time: On September 16, 1978 a total lunar eclipse shadowed the country of Iran and a few hours later a devastating earthquake killed 15,000 people (close to the number of fatalities in the recent Japanese earthquake). There is evidence that lunar eclipses are a bad omen for Israel’s enemies, so there is the possibility that solar eclipses are bad omens for Israel. Ephraim is part of the house of Israel! Could this be God’s way of marking in the heavens his time of wrath for the unrepentant in America? Time will tell.
I’ve recently been studying the book of Revelation, the parts dealing with the Harlot Babylon and the 7-headed Beast. Interesting thing is the Book of Mormon has a great deal to say about the Harlot. It calls her the Great and Abominable Church of the Devil (See 1 Nephi chapters 13 and 14). It tells us that this abominable church was founded after a Jew published a pure version of the Bible and that this corrupted church corrupted this Bible. So, this must have happened sometime after Jesus and Peter. Us Mormons call this the Great Apostasy. Now the apostasy probably started before the church started changing their holy books, but we can see that over time it became full blown. It’s obvious the reason why apostate churches feel the need to change the word of God. Apostasy always leads to changes in doctrines and ordinances. In order for the apostate church to still look valid in the eyes of its members it has to change the words of God to conform with their new doctrines and ordinances.
One fundamental truth which the Bible teaches and which Joseph Smith taught is that God is consistent and his word is consistent. Since this consistency exists, God in scripture often refers us to other scriptures to back up what he’s saying. Here’s one example of this:
“And the great and abominable church, which is the whore of all the earth, shall be cast down by devouring fire, according as it is spoken by the mouth of Ezekiel the prophet, who spoke of these things, which have not come to pass but surely must, as I live, for abominations shall not reign.”
You won’t find the word “church” in the book of Ezekiel (or the Old Testament for that matter), but you do find the word “abominable” in three verses. One of these verses really sticks out:
“Thou also, which hast judged thy sisters, bear thine own shame for thy sins that thou hast committed more ABOMINABLE than they: they are more righteous than thou: yea, be thou confounded also, and bear thy shame, in that thou hast justified thy sisters.”
We find this near the beginning of that chapter:
“Son of man, cause Jerusalem to know her abominations,”
So Jerusalem is the harlot? Well, she’s one of them, but this chapter makes clear there are two harlots, one is Jerusalem and the other is her older sister Samaria. Jerusalem historically has been the capital of the Jews and Samaria was the capital of the rest of the house of Israel, led by the tribe of Ephraim. If we put this all together we come to conclude that the harlot is the house of Israel. Why is she the harlot? Because she departed from God and went after the traditions of the nations around her and she began serving their gods. Because she did this God withdrew his presence from her and left her to the consequences of her actions (for the full story read Ezekiel 16 and 23). So she was scattered. Ephraim and the other Ten Tribes was the first to scatter and then Judah was scattered in 70 AD after they killed Christ. And they both remained in that condition until the Restoration when Joseph Smith began to gather Ephraim back together. However, they still had too much Gentile blood in them and so they rejected the gospel (D&C 45:28-30). God knew they would do this and so he said that when the Gentiles reject the fulness of his gospel he would take it from them and give it to the house of Israel (3 Nephi 16:10-11). Who is the house of Israel? It includes those Gentile Ephraimites who “hearken unto the Lamb of God … And harden not their hearts against the Lamb of God.” (1 Nephi 14:1-2)
There is a pattern to this all:
“And the time cometh that [Christ] shall manifest himself unto all nations, both unto the Jews and also unto the Gentiles; and after he has manifested himself unto the Jews and also unto the Gentiles, then he shall manifest himself unto the Gentiles and also unto the Jews, and the last shall be first, and the first shall be last.”
(1 Nephi 13:42)
First Christ visited the Jews in Jerusalem (his 1st coming), then he visited the Gentile church founded by Peter. He then visited a second Gentile church founded by Joseph Smith (D&C 109:60). After this church goes into apostasy he will again visit an Jewish/Israelite church, but only after the Gentile portion has been purged from her. Those who recognize the signs of the times will stay close to God and he will lead them to the Moses he’s called to gather his people before the coming of Christ. (1 Nephi 22:20)