Sadly, it was too overcast to see the “Blood Moon” (the media’s term) over Humboldt on the day of the Bridegroom Matins, coincidentally or providentially. These unusual astronomical events are a good occasion to discuss the symbolic language of the Scriptures and of the first two days of Holy Week.
Biblically, the moon represents the mother of the ruler, as in the first verse in which the word moon appears:
Genesis 37:9 Then he dreamed another dream, and told it to his brothers, and said, “Behold, I have dreamed another dream; and behold, the sun, the moon, and eleven stars were bowing down to me.”
10 But when he told it to his father and to his brothers, his father rebuked him, and said to him, “What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall I and your mother and your brothers indeed come to bow ourselves to the ground before you?
The sun is associated with Christ the Bridegroom as in:
Psalm 19:5 He has set a tent for the sun, 5 which comes forth like a bridegroom leaving his chamber, and like a strong man runs its course with joy.
Actually, this is the 3rd time in the Bible that “bridegroom” is used. The other two are actually the expression “bridegroom of blood…”
The moon is again associated with the Mother of the Messiah in the powerful symbolism of Revelation 12:
Revelation 12:1 And a great portent appeared in heaven, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars; 2 she was with child and she cried out in her pangs of birth, in anguish for delivery.
This is a description of both Eternal Wisdom and The Mother of the King-Messiah, and she is very much associated with the Bridegroom’s day of joy:
Song of Solomon 3:11 (first verse in the bible with the word “wedding”) Go forth, O daughters of Zion, and behold King Solomon, with the crown with which his mother crowned him on the day of his wedding, on the day of the gladness of his heart.
Psalm 45:9: At your right hand stands the queen-mother arrayed in gold of Ophir.
The imagery of the moon is that of reflection of light. The moon reflects the light from the sun, just as we are called to reflect the glory of God.
Wisdom of Solomon 7:26 (this chapter is the background for Revelation 12) For she is a reflection of eternal light, a spotless mirror of the working of God, and an image of his goodness.
The imagery of a moon eclipse is the anomaly of the moon not reflecting the light from the sun but rather ceasing to do so in a visible manner…
May this little reflection on the language of sun, moon and stars encourage us all to find joy in studying the Holy Scriptures. For those interested in learning more about the language of rocks, animals and stars in biblical symbolism, I recommend the interesting book “Through New Eyes” by James B Jordan.