Biblical Astronomy

September/October 2011


Editor – Robert Scott Wadsworth <> P.O. Box 2272, Oregon City, OR 97045

Phone (503) 655-7430 <> e-mail – <> Website –





Nehemia Gordon from Jerusalem, Israel compiled the following New Moon Report for the month of August 2011 and the beginning of the Sixth Month on the Biblical Calendar. 


August 30 – “On Tuesday August 30, 2011 observers across Israel looked for the new moon but it was not sighted. Visibility was uncertain even under ideal weather conditions due to a short lagtime of only 35 minutes. Lagtime refers to the time between sunset and moonset. This month the moon set only 35 minutes after the sun. During those 35 minutes, the light of the sun had not faded enough for the moon to be visible, and by the time it got dark enough, the moon had already set or was too close to the horizon to see. Normally when the moon has a short lagtime, it coincides with a small percentage of the moon's surface facing Earth being illuminated. This month the short lagtime of 35 minutes coincided with an unusually high illumination of 3.71% making a concerted effort at sighting the moon worthwhile. Despite our efforts we did not see the moon. Clouds may have played a factor in our negative sighting. New moon day will be tomorrow evening, Wednesday August 31, 2011.”


August 31 – “On Wednesday August 31, 2011 the new moon was sighted from Jerusalem at 6:56pm by David Cachicas followed by numerous observers all over Israel. My photo of the new moon from the Baka neighborhood of Jerusalem at 7:25pm is posted at:”


The next new moon is expected to be visible from Jerusalem, Israel near sunset on September 29, 2011 when the moon will be 7.07% illuminated and 11.980  above the horizon at five minutes past sunset. 


There is a very slight to nil chance that the moon could be seen near sunset on September 28.  There was a condition last month that gave a chance for a possible new moon sighting on August 30.  I wrote of this in the August newsletter.  However, the moon was not spotted until the following evening.  See this month’s New Moon Report.  On August 30th the moon was 3.6% illuminated and 5.980 above the horizon at 5 minutes past sunset.  This situation gave a fair chance for the crescent to be spotted if it was not a very hot day.  The crescent was not spotted anywhere in Israel on that day.    I have no record of what the temperature was at various spots in Israel for that day.  September has a similar situation.  On September 28 the moon will be 2.21% illuminated and 3.650 above the horizon at 5 minutes past sunset.    The illumination is about 1.4% less than it was on August 30 and the moon is about 2.30 lower than it was at 5 minutes past sunset on August 30.  However, it may be a much cooler day, which will result in less particulate in the atmosphere.  The crescent will most likely not be seen on September 28.  We will know for sure soon.   This is for the record in order to aid future predictions under certain conditions in spotting the first crescent of the new moon.





I have received many e-mails from subscribers and others over the past couple of months concerning the celestial event that will take place on the evening starting Yom Teruah (The Day of Trumpets).  I have received much input from two particular people.  I do not know if they want me to give their names, so I will only give their first names.  Thank you Tamara and Rob for all your input concerning the celestial event that is to take place on the evening of September 29, 2011.


The first crescent of the next new moon will most likely be seen near sunset on September 29, 2011.  At that time the sun will be in the upper arm of Bethulah (Virgo) and as seen from Jerusalem, the moon will be beneath her feet.  The chart below shows the moon below her foot and above the horizon at 20 minutes past sunset or 6:46 pm JST.  This chart is shown in the local view. The pinkish area at the bottom of the chart is the horizon.  The moon here is almost exactly in the same spot in Bethulah as it was when Yahshuah was born (September 11, 3 B.C.), though at that time the sun was in conjunction with the womb of Bethulah and not in her upper arm.  Also see the September/October 2008 issue of Biblical Astronomy for a similar event.



This celestial sign of the woman being clothed with the sun and the moon beneath her feet from Revelation 12:1 occurs about every two to three years as seen from Jerusalem and occurs when the fall feasts occur from late September to mid October.  This sign is seen from various locations on earth just about every year.  But from any one of those locations about once every two to three years.


There are also other signs that occur in the fall every year and during the fall feasts when the fall feasts occur from late September to mid October.  I do not have the space to go through them all with their charts here, but you can see an article on them with the charts in the September 1996 (with stick figures) and the September/October 2003 (with pictures) issues of Biblical Astronomy.   These signs are celestial rehearsals for certain events mentioned in Revelation 12 and 13.  These events take place every fall portraying the casting down of the dragon, the dragon standing on the shore of the sea, the beast rising up out of the sea, etc.  At some point and time, the Biblical events will actually come to pass on Earth.  That is why every year, we check to see what celestial events occur, such as conjunctions, comets, massing of planets, meteor storms, etc., in these constellations in the fall. There are some interesting events taking place this year that we will take a look at in this newsletter.


Chart 568 shows the ecliptic view of the constellation Virgo (Bethulah) on September 29, 2011 (Yom Teruah) as seen from Jerusalem.  The sun is in the upper arm of Bethulah and the moon is beneath her feet.  The planets Venus and Saturn are in or near her upper leg and are near conjunction.  Venus will pass Saturn during the evening and early morning hours when Bethulah is well below the horizon.  They will be in conjunction by late morning.  When they are seen again from Jerusalem on the evening of September 30, Venus will have passed Saturn and be on its other side.  They come into conjunction during the day on Yom Teruah but the actual conjunction will not be seen from Israel.  It is still interesting that they come into conjunction on Yom Teruah.  Check the February, March, April and May 2011 issues of Biblical Astronomy to recap the celestial events that took place around the spring feasts.  This seems to be a completion of those events.


Chart 568 – Ecliptic view of Bethulah on Sept. 29, 2011 as seen from Jerusalem from Starry Night Pro 4.0.5


Chart 569 – Ecliptic view of Bethulah on Sept. 29, 2011 as seen from Jerusalem from Starry Night Pro 6.4.3


Bethulah (Virgo) represents the faithful of Israel or the remnant of the woman’s seed and also the 144,000 virgins or faithful servants who hold the testimony of Messiah mentioned in the Book of Revelation.   Nogah (Venus) represents the Bright and Morning Star (Messiah) of Revelation 22:16.  Saturn represents Satan.  The two planets together here represent the conflict between the woman and woman’s seed against the serpent and his seed.  The constellation Hydra (the water serpent or beast from the sea) is below the woman and runs up beside her (not shown here but check out Chart 558 in the May 2011 issue of Biblical Astronomy.


Chart 568 shows Comet Elenin above the shoulder of Bethulah.  The comet disintegrated in late August so it does not play much of a factor here.  If it held together and had an outburst, then we may have had a bright object to look at, though it had to be as bright as Venus to be seen through the glare of the sun in the early morning sky about 20 minutes before sunrise on September 29 or 30.    The picture of Virgo in Chart 568 is from the Starry Night Pro 4.0.5 program and is an accurate rendition of the constellation as far as the head is where the head is suppose to be, the feet where they are suppose to be, etc. 

All pictures of Virgo from the 17th through 19th centuries from various Astronomers such as Jamieson, Bode, Flamsteed, Fortan, etc. have the proportions right with her head covering the stars Nu Virginis, Xi Virginis, Omega Virginis etc., as shown in Chart 568.  Chart 569 shows the head of Virgo below those stars.  It is in the wrong place.  It is also turned a bit so that the star Auva is in her arm and not in her womb as shown in Chart 568.  Chart 569 was produced using Starry Night 6.4.3, the latter version of the program.  I do like the picture of Bethulah in Chart 569 better than Chart 568, though the proportions are wrong.  I put both charts together above so they will be easier to compare.


She is holding a staff of wheat or barley in one hand and a palm frond in the other.  This may be very familiar to those who celebrate the Feasts of Yahweh, both Jews and Messianic believers.  Do you ever wonder where this tradition comes from?


I have mentioned this discrepancy in previous newsletters but I never showed the comparisons.  The creators of Starry Night did not have Biblical Astronomy in mind when they made the program.  It is the only Astronomy program that I know of that has the pictures of the constellations instead of just the stick figures.  The pictures bring more life to the story than the stick or line figures do.  Though for the time being, we are stuck with the pictures from Starry Night.  I will continue to point out any discrepancies the pictures may have in interpreting celestial events.  The dark diagonal line in Chart 569 represents the horizon.  Just tip the chart a bit to see the local view.  Both of the charts are in Ecliptic view.  The light magenta horizontal line is the Ecliptic.


I forgot to mention above that the planets Saturn (especially Saturn) and Venus will be very difficult to see with the unaided eye in the early evening of September 29, since their light will be drowned out by the light of the nearby setting sun.

You should be able to see them with binoculars or a telescope.


The star shown in the charts as Spica is the star Tsemech (Heb.), which means Branch.  There are twenty Hebrew words translated “Branch,” but only one of them (Tsemech) is used exclusively of the Messiah, and this word only four times (Jer. 23:5,6;  Zech. 3:8;  Zech. 6:12;  and Isa. 4:2).


Venus will pass 3 degrees north of Spica (Tsemech) on October 3 coming into conjunction with it.   The Bright and Morning Star will be in conjunction with The Branch.


Yom Teruah – 1st day of  7th Month

    sunset September 29 to sunset September 30.


Yom Kippur – 10th day of  7th Month

     sunset October 8 to sunset October 9.


Feast of Tabernacles – 15th to 21st day of 7th Month

    sunset October 13 to sunset October 20.


The Last Great Day – 22nd day of 7th Month

    sunset  October 20 to sunset October 21.





The planet Adom (Mars) will be passing through the Beehive Cluster also known as Praesepe in the constellation Cancer from October 1 to October 2, 2011. 


Chart 570 shows the planet Mars about to enter the Beehive Cluster in the constellation Cancer on September 30, 2011.  The star cluster called the Beehive Cluster is also known by its ancient name Praesepe, which means a multitude, offspring.  In ancient times the constellation Cancer was not shown as a crab and was called Klaria, which means the cattle folds.  This constellation represents a place of shelter or refuge for the sheepfolds of Yahweh.  See the March 2011 issue of Biblical Astronomy where Cancer was the feature constellation for more interesting info on the constellation.


Chart 570 – Mars near the Beehive Cluster at 5 a.m. JST as seen from Jerusalem on 9/30/11


The planet Mars can represent Michael the warrior archangel who fights against the Devil for Israel or the atoning blood of Messiah, or blood and war, depending on the circumstance.  Here it may represent all three.  The atoning blood of Messiah protects His people from the wrath to come to his enemies.  That same blood is a weapon against His enemies. 


Chart 571 shows the path of Mars from September 30 through October 3, 2011 as it passes through the Praesepe (Beehive Cluster).  You can also see the stars Asselus Borealis and Asselus Australlis on either side of the cluster.  These are the Northern Ass and the Southern Ass.  They represent two donkeys.  Donkeys are used to protect sheep from predators.  Here, the remnant of the woman’s “offspring” is protected by the atoning blood of Messiah, Michael the warrior archangel, and two donkeys.  We have nothing to fear.  This would be a great celestial event to view through binoculars.  A good time to view this would be around 5 a.m. on October 1.  Mars will be seen more in the central area of the edge of the Beehive at that time as seen from the United States.


Chart 571 – The path of Mars through the Beehive Cluster from Sept. 30 to Oct. 3, 2011 as seen from Jerusalem




Every year around October 8 the Draconid Meteor Shower peaks.  This is usually a weak shower only producing 10 to 20 meteors per hour.  However, every once in a while the shower becomes a storm producing as many up 10,000 meteors per hour and hundreds of meteors per second as was witnessed all across Europe on October 9, 1933.


The dust particles that make up the shower or storm come from Halley’s Comet.  This year the earth is expected to pass through a region of dust particles that may produce more than 600 meteors per hour.  They will be best seen from the Middle East  (including Israel) and Europe. 


The chart below shows the radiant of the Draconids Meteor Shower in the head of the dragon (mouth area here).  The chart shows the foot and heel of Hercules (represents the Seed of the woman or Yahshuah) coming down on the dragon’s head.  The colored area is the horizon and the dragon’s head is descending downward toward the horizon.  This is the portrayal of the dragon being cast down to the earth.  The meteors could represent the stars of heaven falling and one third of the devil’s angels being cast to the earth.



The chart above is shown at Midnight on October 8/9 as seen from Jerusalem.  The dragon’s head will be buried below the horizon around 2 a.m. on October 9.  This is a great portrayal of the dragon being cast down to the earth.  The best time to see the meteor storm from Israel will be around midnight on October 8/9.  You may want to check between 10 and 11 pm on the 8th as well.  Good golly, October 8/9 is Yom Kippur.


If you have the pdf file of the newsletter from an attachment to an e-mail or from the Biblical Astronomy Website, then you can use the Marquee Zoom feature in Adobe to zoom in on the charts.  Just put the cursor over the chart and press the right click button on you mouse and go down and select Marquee Zoom.  The put the cursor over the area you want to zoom in on and press the left click button on your mouse to zoom in.  Each click zooms in more.





The Orionid Meteor Shower peaks on October 21/22.  This year they compete with a waning crescent moon.  The best time to look for the meteorites is around 2 a.m.  This shower produces about 20 meteors per hour. 


The chart below from shows the radiant of the shower in the club of Orion.



Orion portrays Light breaking forth in the Redeemer.  Orion is also seen crushing the enemy under his foot.  See the January 2010 issue of Biblical Astronomy for more interesting info on Orion.




Zedek (Jupiter) will be at opposition and its closest approach to the earth for the year and at its brightest October 28, 2011.   Below is a chart showing the position of Jupiter in Aries at the time of opposition.



Jupiter is in the upper leg that is breaking the bands that bind Pisces (Israel) to Cetus, the beast from the sea.  You will most likely need to zoom in on this one to see it well, though I enlarged this chart for the web version of the newsletter.  Jupiter will be at magnitude –2.9.