Reports of Thallus and Phlegon
that darkness covered the land immediately after Jesus Christ died on the cross. They state that the darkness occurred due to a solar eclipse. But this is not possible since
the Jews celebrated the passover, the time of Jesus' death, during a full moon. Here is Thallus' comment, "For
the Hebrews celebrate the passover on the 14th day according to the moon . . . but an eclipse of the sun takes place only when the
moon comes under the sun." The following explains why a solar eclipse could not have occurred. Even though they were scientifically in error, it is stunning to realize that darkness covered the land when the moon was on the opposite side of the earth - when a solar eclipse was not possible.
If we look for natural events - a solar eclipse - to explain the darkness that occurred during the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, we must explain away the existence of the full moon. Our first piece of information is found in John 19:14-16 where we are told that Jesus died on a Friday just before the Passover. This is important because the Jews schedule the Passover during a full moon. A full moon occurs when the moon is "behind" the earth. A solar eclipse requires the moon to be between the sun and the earth.
Astronomical records show that no solar eclipse occurred anywhere near the city of Jerusalem during the years of A.D. 30-35.
Solar Eclipse. A solar eclipse can only
occur when the moon passes between the sun and the earth. When this happens, the sun's rays are blocked from
shining on the earth and consequently part of the earth is darkened.
Therefore, a solar eclipse cannot occur during a full moon.
No solar eclipse was possible due to the positions of the sun and moon during
the passover. Therefore, the darkness that Thallus
refer to cannot be explained by natural causes. It was a supernatural
event! Consider the following:
||1) The Jewish Passover occurs during
the full moon.
||2) Full moon occurs when the moon is behind
||3) This means a supernatural darkness occurred
over the earth.
||4) The darkness occurred during Christ's death.
||5) The universe responded to the Creator's
1.Julius Africanus, The Extant Fragments of the Five Books of The Chronography of Julius Africanus.