Friday's eclipse of the Sun will be very partial in Israel, with no more than 7 percent of the sun blacked out by the moon, according to local astronomical experts.
But that doesn't mean that Jews around the world, including in Israel, aren't taking it seriously.
Gidon Ariel, co-founder of ecumenical website Root Source, has called for people around the world to pray for two minutes starting at 10:18 A.M. GMT, when the eclipse is due to begin. Ariel himself will be praying at the Western Wall in Jerusalem.
Root Source describes itself as a website on which "knowledgeable Israeli Jews teach Christians around the world online about Jewish concepts, ideas and thought."
“While a worldwide call to prayer is not typical for Jews like myself, the concurrence and rarity of this natural event, together with the times in which we live, points to prayer as being the right response to such an amazing natural event that might indicate the finger of God in history,” Ariel said in a written statement, according to WND website.
His Root Source colleague Bob O’Dell, a pro-Israel Christian, pointed to the significance of an eclipse visible from the North Pole at this particular time.
“The North Pole can’t really be called the territory of any particular nation or people,” O’Dell said. “This is likely a message from God to the entire world.”
Pastor Mark Biltz, author of “Blood Moons: Decoding the Imminent Heavenly Signs,” sees a heavenly warning in the consequences of the eclipse, especially for the northern Europeans, who will be most affected.
“In Jewish tradition, a total solar eclipse is a warning to the Gentiles and a sign of judgment on the nations," Blitz said in an interview with WND.
"When we look at where the darkness will be, it will be in northern European countries like England and Sweden where we see the rise of Islam and anti-Israel sentiment. Europeans especially should take heed.”
Biltz also sees significance in the timing of the solar eclipse. “An event of this magnitude at the very beginning of the religious new year demands attention. As the Bible tells us, there will be signs in the heavens on the feast days, and this is a very significant sign on a critical day.
“It’s the same day that there was the grand-opening ceremony of the tabernacle of Moses, with fire from heaven lighting the altar. Historically, this is a day of judgment.”
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