Q. In my 80 years, I have seen several total eclipses of the moon. As I recall, the moon always assumed a reddish tint due to refraction of the sun’s light through the earth’s atmosphere. I think the more contaminated the atmosphere on the night of the eclipse, the “redder” the moon appears. I seem to remember its being redder some times than others. What is a Blood Moon, and how does it differ from the above? Is it only a matter of degree? Who names it a Blood Moon? What is the prophetic significance of a Blood Moon, if any, during “peace time”?
A. Blood Moon originally referred to the first full moon after the Harvest Moon because it’s when men went hunting to store up meat for winter. The Bible does not contain this phrase, but it does speak of the moon turning to blood, or becoming as blood, three times, in Joel 2:31, Acts 2:20, and Rev. 6:12. They all refer to the same event, which is a great earthquake that accompanies the opening of the 6th Seal (Rev. 6:12-17).
The term has become popular lately due to a teaching about certain eclipses coming in the near future and their supposed connection to end times events. None of the Biblical references specify an eclipse as the cause of the moon turning red, but two of them mention fire and billows of smoke. The Moon’s color is more likely caused by the particulates in the atmosphere following the earthquake, as you have suggested.