A storm is brewing on Saturn’s north pole, and the Star of Saturn rests within it.
First discovered by Voyager in the 1980s, the strange hexagon on Saturn’s north pole baffles scientists. Nothing like it has been discovered on the other planets in our solar system. And, it’s been said that with what we know about Saturn’s atmosphere, if NASA were to expect to find such a thing on one of the planets, Saturn would be the last place to look.
Scientists believe the hexagon is shaped by a wandering jet stream with speeds of 220 mph. The white spots within the hexagon are storms, some being active for more than a decade and twice the size of the largest hurricane ever seen on Earth.
Over the years, NASA has released images of “Saturn’s Strange Hexagon” using various color effects to enhance the photos. Thanks to Cassini’s enhanced imaging ability, we saw the hexagon in true-color for the first time in 2013.
Cassini ended its mission on September 15, 2017, just a month shy of 20 years after its launch, by plunging itself into Saturn’s atmosphere (as planned).
It may be a while before another mission is launched to study our sixth planet, but scientists continue to study data from Cassini-Huygens to unlock its secrets. For instance, in September 2018, a team announced that the hexagon storm may tower high above Saturn’s stratosphere in a series of two or more storms stacked atop each other.
While we look forward to secrets uncovered by the Cassini data, there is a lot to learn about Saturn that will not be revealed there. Let’s take a look at some of it.
On May 1, 1930, a young girl was awarded for suggesting a name for the newly-discovered planet Pluto. She didn’t name it after Mickey’s best friend but for the Roman god of the underworld. Plus, the PL honored Percival Lowell, who first detected Pluto’s presence and began the hunt for it in 1905.
There is no similar naming story for Saturn, for its first discovery unknown. Since it is visible to the naked eye, knowledge of our sixth planet goes back to ancient times. It was most recently named after a Roman god, as are most of the other planets, but not out of sentimentality or to follow a naming convention.
The people who first observed the visible planets thought each one was actually the star of a particular god in their mythology, and so they called it by the name of that god. As early as the second millennium BC, the planet was known to Babylonian astrologers as Ninib, associated with the god Ninurta. The Romans named it after their god Saturn, and that name has stuck with it to the present day.
Six, six, six
The Star of Saturn has three physical characteristics with the number six:
- Like every other shape called a hexagon, the formation on Saturn has six sides.
- A star can be drawn within the hexagon with six lines and having six points.
- Saturn is the sixth planet from the sun.
There are several biblical principles applied to the number 6:
- Symbolically, 6 is the number of man, who is made in the image of God yet falls short of God’s perfection (7) due to man’s disobedience.
- The earth was created in six days; man was created on the sixth day (Genesis 1:26-31).
- Man is given 6 days to achieve his goals (the seventh belongs to God [Exodus 20:8-11]).
- The sixth commandment is, “You shall not murder” (Exodus 20:13); murder is the intentional taking of a human life.
- Christ Jesus says of the satan, “He was a murderer from the beginning” (John 8:44), identifying the satan as the original and chief violator of the 6th commandment.
- The code “666” identifies the satan’s false trinity brought to earth through a world system known as “the beast” which will claim to fulfill man’s desire to achieve through human means what can only be given by God.
The Host of Heaven
While NASA and its contemporaries do not see evidence of life on the other planets in our solar system, we can say with certainty that life is there – the whole host of heaven.
The Holy Bible tells us that the heavenly hosts are both the planets and the beings in the heavens. Both are objects that God created. The Scripture reveals that both can be worshipped and served, and that both will be destroyed in the last day. In this passage, “the host” of heaven are the other planets:
“Thus the heavens and the earth were completed, and all their hosts” (Genesis 2:1).
Here, “host of heaven” describes heavenly beings:
“Micaiah said, “Therefore, hear the word of the Lord. I saw the Lord sitting on His throne, and all the host of heaven standing by Him on His right and on His left” (1 Kings 22:19).
Isaiah tells us God will punish the hosts of heaven and the kings of the earth, so is talking about beings:
“So it will happen in that day, that the Lord will punish the host of heaven on high, and the kings of the earth on earth” (Isaiah 24:21).
Later in the text, Isaiah reveals the fate of the sky and planets, the latter called the host of heaven:
“And all the host of heaven will wear away, and the sky will be rolled up like a scroll” (Isaiah 34:4).
Last (but certainly not least) is this passage where God warns His people to not look up at the sun, moon, stars and “all the host of heaven,” indicating that these are objects or beings that can be served and worshiped – not merely rocks or balls of gas:
“And beware not to lift up your eyes to heaven and see the sun and the moon and the stars, all the host of heaven, and be drawn away and worship them and serve them” (Deuteronomy 4:19a).
It is clear that these objects (planets) and beings (spirits) are related to one another. God’s warning to His people concerning them are the same, as are the ends they will meet.
The apostle Paul tells us that as Christians – children of God adopted through the blood of Christ and sealed by the Holy Spirit – our enemy is not only here on earth but also among the host of heaven:
“(O)ur struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12).
Looking at the hexagon on Saturn, it seems that there is more of a relationship between the planetary host of heaven and the sentient host of heaven than their having the same descriptive name in the Holy Bible. Or, that perhaps God used the same name to describe them so that we might know this relationship. It is one of those things that can be known but not readily explained. Like much that exists in both the natural and spirit realms, the reality of the host of heaven is complex. In our time-based, three-dimensional world, there is little hope of understanding it. Still, it is there, and we can learn from it.
Talismans and banners
To this day, occultists create talismans of the planets worn as protection. Each of these has on one side a five-pointed star and on the other, a six-pointed star. Each six-pointed star has an animal in the center. Here are a few examples:
Talisman of Jupiter
Talisman of Mars
Talisman of the Sun
The so-called talisman of Saturn has the image of a horned bull as its animal avatar:
Saturn and Israel (then and now)
Is it merely coincidence that the identifying symbol of Jewishness today, such that it is borne on the Israeli nation flag, is identical to the Star of Saturn depicted on the amulets above as well as that appearing on the planet bearing its name? Well, we don’t allot much to coincidence here, so let’s look closely at it.
As children in Sunday School, we learned about a dark day in Israel’s history (emphasis added):
Now when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, the people assembled about Aaron and said to him, “Come, make us a god who will go before us; as for this Moses, the man who brought us up from the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.” Aaron said to them, “Tear off the gold rings which are in the ears of your wives, your sons, and your daughters, and bring them to me.”
Then all the people tore off the gold rings which were in their ears and brought them to Aaron. He took this from their hand, and fashioned it with a graving tool and made it into a molten calf; and they said, “This is your god, O Israel, who brought you up from the land of Egypt.”
Now when Aaron saw this, he built an altar before it; and Aaron made a proclamation and said, “Tomorrow shall be a feast to the Lord.” So the next day they rose early and offered burnt offerings, and brought peace offerings; and the people sat down to eat and to drink, and rose up to play. (Exodus 32:1-6)
To at least one child growing up in Sunday School, the golden calf seemed like a brief episode in Israel’s history. It happened, they repented, and all was good to the Promised Land. When we grow up and read more of the Holy Bible, however, we find that is not the case. God was extremely hurt and angered by it, and He did not soon forget that while He was giving the Law to Moses, they were having orgies over a golden calf.
Throughout the Old Testament and into the New, God reminds them of this awful idolatry, emphasizing the sin especially attributable to their worship of the calf. He does this in Moses’ last address to them while still in the wilderness(Deuteronomy 9:16), hundreds of years later through the Psalmist (106:19-21), later still through Nehemiah (9:18-19), and then again as by the prophet Amos (5:26-27) in a passage that would be quoted centuries later in the New Testament.
Is it coincidence (certainly not!) that the Amos passage enters the New Testament through the words of Stephen, the first martyr of the church, in his speech before the Sanhedrin? The martyrdom of Stephen by stoning at the hands of the religious elite of Israel is a pivotal moment in God’s dealings with the Jews. It is no coincidence that one last time He reminds them of this early idolatry as the Holy Spirit gives Stephen the words to say. Here is Acts 7:42-43 (emphasis added):
But God turned away and delivered them up to serve the host of heaven; as it is written in the book of the prophets, ‘It was not to Me that you offered victims and sacrifices forty years in the wilderness, was it, O house of Israel? (You also took along the tabernacle of Moloch and the star of the god Rompha, the images which you made to worship. I also will remove you beyond Babylon.’
Here is the original passage in the KJV, the passage reads (again, (emphasis added):
Have ye offered unto me sacrifices and offerings in the wilderness forty years, O house of Israel? (But ye have borne the tabernacle of your Moloch and Chiun your images, the star of your god, which ye made to yourselves. Therefore will I cause you to go into captivity beyond Damascus, saith the Lord, whose name is The God of hosts.
Moloch, Rompha, Remphan, Sikkuth, Chiun, Kiyyun – the translation varies by time and culture — all are names for Saturn. And the star they carried is sitting at Saturn’s north pole:
Saturn and the star at Messiah’s birth
A popular theory on the Star of Bethlehem is that it was a conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn (or Jupiter, mars, and Saturn). This usually leads to speculation that the Magi would have recognized Jupiter as the ‘king’ star and Saturn as the star of the Jewish people, putting that together with the prophecies of Daniel to know it was time to go to Judea, looking for the newborn King of kings.
The problem with that is, Saturn is not the star of the Jews or Judea or Israel. These are the chosen people of God. They were not to worship the host of heaven. They were the children of the Most High God and no other.
If there is to be a sign in the heavens that is so spectacular the Magi could not miss it, God would be sure that it spoke to His people, too. The Lion of the tribe of Judah was about to be born. The ‘king’ star is Regulus, the heart of the constellation Leo (the lion). Regulus is a true star, not a planet shining like one. Judah (the Jews in Judea) is the lion (Genesis 49:9) and Regulus is its heart, their Messiah (Genesis 49:10, Revelation 5:5).
In his book, The Star that Astonished the World, Dr. Ernest L. Martin explains how the ‘gentile’ king star joined with the Messianic “King” star to announce the birth of the King of kings:
The Impressive Signs of 3/2 B.C.E.: Here was Jupiter (the King planet), which had just united with Venus (the Mother) on August 12, 3 B.C.E., now joining itself with the King star Regulus (the star of the Jewish Messiah) in the zodiacal sign of Leo (the constellation of Judah), while the Sun (the Supreme Father or Ruler) was then located in Virgo (the Virgin). All of these features are reminiscent of biblical themes associated with the birth and personage of the Jewish Messiah.
No doubt, Saturn wanted this glory and has over millennia trained the minds of many to believe it had its part in it, but God would not allow it any part. Dr. Martin continues: (emphasis added):
The Impressive Signs of 3/2 B.C.E.: Look at this massing of the planets. All the primary planets (except Saturn) were now clustering near one another in the constellation of Leo (Judah), while the Moon was just then entering Leo. The Sun, however, at that very time was entering the sign of Virgo (the Virgin). These indications once again could show remarkable prophetic themes mentioned in the Bible that people were looking for at the time.
Surely someone out there has at least a couple questions, such as: What would God have against a lifeless ball of gas like Saturn? How could a ball of gas want glory?
Saturn and the Church
If the satan, as Saturn, was so doggedly in pursuit of God’s beloved in the former age, would he not be just as determined to woo her in the present?
Today, a lot of people do not have a problem with Jesus or God the Father but rather with the exclusivity of Christ Jesus as the only Way of salvation and to reconciliation with God the Father. It was the same in ancient Rome. The church was not frowned upon because of her devotion to Christ but for her strong devotion to Him as the sole means of salvation for mankind and for her aversion to pagan deities. The pure dedication the early church showed for the Savior was such that many believers chose to die horrible deaths than to deny Christ or bow to an idol. This was an inspiring witness to the Roman people and many received Christ Jesus as Savior and Lord as a result.
The satan had to be angry about this — his plan to torment the church into submission not only failed but the numbers of believers was growing. He adopted another tactic. It took a couple of centuries, but the enemy of men’s souls is patient. Eventually, an emperor came along that realized the Christian faith was growing much faster than pagan beliefs. If he was to hold onto power, he, too, had to embrace the Christians, even claiming to be one of them. No more arresting and murdering Christians, but he couldn’t risk upsetting the large number of pagans reluctant to let go of their beliefs. For example, Saturn worship.
Saturn was really popular among the people of Rome:
Saturn is a complex figure because of his multiple associations and long history. He was the first god of the Capitol, known since the most ancient times as Saturnius Mons, and was seen as a god of generation, dissolution, plenty, wealth, agriculture, periodic renewal and liberation. In later developments he came to be also a god of time. His reign was depicted as a Golden Age of plenty and peace. The Temple of Saturn in the Roman Forum housed the state treasury. In December, he was celebrated at what is perhaps the most famous of the Roman festivals, the Saturnalia, a time of feasting, role reversals, free speech, gift-giving and revelry.
Under various emperors and popes, the pantheon of the gods became the pantheon of the saints. For example, Bacchus was ancient Rome’s god of wine; Vincent is the Roman church’s saint of wine makers. Also, ancient feast days were given correlating Christian identities. Easter (worship of the goddess Oestre/Ashtoreth/Ishtar) was given the Christian identity of the Hebrew First Fruits, the day Messiah rose from the grave. The birthday of the unconquerable sun, on December 25, was given a new name, “Christmas,” which incorporates much of the saturnalia customs with it:
Saturnalia was an ancient Roman festival in honor of the deity Saturn, held on 17 December of the Julian calendar and later expanded with festivities through to 23 December. The holiday was celebrated with a sacrifice at the Temple of Saturn, in the Roman Forum, and a public banquet, followed by private gift-giving, continual partying, and a carnival atmosphere that overturned Roman social norms: gambling was permitted, and masters provided table service for their slaves. The poet Catullus called it “the best of days.”
Does it matter that these relics of pagan worship reside within the church today? Yes. It matters to God.
Ancient Israel did not forsake worshiping Jehovah. They just worshiped Baal, Ashtoreth, Molech, and others alongside the One True God. The passage in Amos says “you also carried.” A study of the Old Testament will show that the Jews consistently attempted to blend pagan worship with worship of Jehovah. Maybe they were trying to cover all their bases, you know, just in case Jehovah did not answer, Baal might. Or, maybe they just really enjoyed the customs associated with Ashtoreth. But God will not accept that. Only absolute, singular faith in and allegiance to Him is acceptable worship.
As mentioned earlier, the saturnalia is not the only pagan influence stamped atop the Christian calendar. It is, however, celebrated at the time of year when all retailers make their money (the temple of Saturn held the Roman treasury) and when all people are expected to be especially happy, go out shopping, and wrap up these things we buy to give to other people.
As for the nation Israel today, Saturn has managed to stamp his name on the Jewish Sabbath as the civil calendar is written (Saturday).
And there is still that pesky six-sided star, just like the one on the talismans . . . and within the vortex spinning on Saturn’s north pole.
God’s Perfect Timing
A mere fifty years ago, we were nearly blind to the wonders of the universe. God is now allowing man the technology to see what is out there. This could mean the time will soon be upon us that He will reveal to us, through these instruments, that of which Jesus said:
“There will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth dismay among nations, in perplexity at the roaring of the sea and the waves, men fainting from fear and the expectation of the things which are coming upon the world; for the powers of the heavens will be shaken” (Luke 21:25-26).
We can now see one of the seats of these “powers of the heavens” bearing its mark for all to see. Praise God, Jesus did not stop with the warning but continued to the promise:
“Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory” (Luke 21: 27).
Is He coming soon? Yes!