Stargazers have a treat in store for them at the end of the month – a Super Blood Wolf Moon.
Between January 21 and 22 a mysterious red glow will light up the sky for around three hours.
The first lunar phenomenon of the year will combine three different events – a Supermoon, a Lunar Eclipse and a Wolf Moon.
A lunar eclipse, or blood moon, is often the subject of fascination for many conspiracy theorists and religious people.
A blood moon is actually a relatively common event which happens every one to three years.
However, sky enthusiasts will want to catch this one because the next one won’t happen until May 26, 2021.
Despite it being a regular occurrence, many cultures and religions throughout history have tried to put forward the belief the Blood Moon is a sign of the impending apocalypse.
Some religious believers believe in the Blood Moon prophecy – the belief of the lunar eclipse being a sign of the “end times”.
“The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the Lord comes”
(Joel 2: 31)
What does the Bible say about the Blood Moon?
The Bible doesn’t actually use the phrase “blood moon”, but there are significant mentions of the moon turning the colour of flood.
The first and only mention in the Old Testament is in the book of Joel, and foretells an apocalyptic event that will separate faithful from the unfaithful.
It says: “The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the Lord comes.” (Joel 2: 31)
Another similar passage appears in the New Testament, in the Acts and Revelations.
It says: “The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord Come.” (Acts 2:20)
And then Revelations 6:12: “And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sacklocth of hair, and the moon became as blood.”
There are also various other passages which go on to mention the moon and the impending apocalypse.
For example: “The earth quakes before them; the heavens tremble. The sun and the moon are darkened, and the stars withdraw their shining.” (Joel 2:30)
“And I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and columns of smoke. The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood, before the great and awesome day of the Lord comes.” (Joel 2:30-31)
“But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light.” (Mark 13:24)
For many the notion of the end times being near after a lunar eclipse may sound like conspiracy.
However, there is some evidence that the Blood Moon can affect some things on Earth.
The US Geological Survey (USGS) found a connection between full moons, new moons and a slightly higher likelihood of high magnitude earthquakes.
USGS found earthquakes are up to three times more likely to occur during a “high tide”.
However, the survey points out the chances of it happening are still very low.
USGS said: “You must stop and realise that the background probability is, in general, very low in a given place and year (fractions of a percent), so that raising this tiny probability by a factor of 3 during high tides still results in a very tiny probability.”
The study also points out, even though the sun, earth and moon line up, it doesn’t change the gravitational impact of the sun on Earth.
We are still just as far away from the moon as normal.
NASA states a Super Moon does not cause floods, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, severe weather or tsunamis.
During a Supermoon the moon exerts 42% more force at its closest point to Earth.
However, it doesn’t mean the force has any particular effect on disasters.