The Christmas Star in the Book of MormonBy: Mormon Heretic
Scientists have tried to figure out what star appeared to announce Jesus birth to the Wise Men. I did a post a few years ago titled Astrology in the Christmas Story. It is pretty much an accepted fact that our current calendar (called the Gregorian calendar, named after Pope Gregory who asked his monks to change the calendar to coincide with Christ’s birth), was off by a few years. Based on various methods, scientists have dated Christ’s correct birth to around 4-7 BC.
I reviewed a now out of print film called Mystery of the Three Kings (though you can watch it on Netflix). The documentary interviews astronomers who try to date the birth of Christ based on the appearance of the new star mentioned in the Bible. A clay tablet from Babylon (the Almanac of Sippa) in the British Museum tells of a great astronomical event. Jupiter and Saturn aligned in 7 BC. Astronomer Michael Molnar tells us that these planets were known to play the central role in kingship, or emporership. Jupiter tells of the coming of a new king. Saturn tells of the old ruler. When these 2 planets aligned closely in the sky, it meant the change of one ruler to another. Traditionally, the constellation of Pisces was the sign of Israel. These 3 objects aligned 3 times in the year 7 BC. This happens every 820 years, so it is a very unusual event. Jupiter also was eclipsed by the moon, and occurred in the East, which would be April 17, 6 BC. Molnar believes this is the date of the birth of Christ. It is an extremely unusual event, and would have been greatly noticed by the Magi.
The Book of Mormon records this new star as well in 3 Nephi chapter 1, as well as an event not mentioned in the Bible.
4 And it came to pass that in the commencement of the ninety and second year, behold, the prophecies of the prophets began to be fulfilled more fully; for there began to be agreater signs and greater miracles wrought among the people.
15 And it came to pass that the words which came unto Nephi were fulfilled, according as they had been spoken; for behold, at the going down of the asun there was bno darkness; and the people began to be astonished because there was no darkness when the night came.
19 And it came to pass that there was no darkness in all that night, but it was as light as though it was mid-day. And it came to pass that the sun did rise in the morning again, according to its proper order; and they knew that it was the day that the Lord should beaborn, because of the bsign which had been given.
21 And it came to pass also that a new astar did appear, according to the word.
Ok, so if we assume that this new star was the alignment of Saturn and Jupiter, what explanation do we have for the night being as “as light as though it was mid-day”?