Sir Isaac Newton's 2060 Apocalyptic Prophecy
Sir Isaac Newton is considered one of the most brilliant people in the history of mankind. When we think of the idea of genius, an image of Newton (secondary to Einstein) is conjured up in our collective minds. Isaac Newton possessed an extraordinary range of knowledge and skills. He was an accomplished and distinguished physicist, mathematician, astronomer, and alchemist. However, few realize that Newton was also a theologian.
One of the things that Newton enjoyed most about studying the Bible was eschatology. Eschatology is the technical term for the study of biblical prophecy, and Newton used his advanced skill with numbers to predict the precise year that the world as we know it would end. The year that Newton predicted the world would essentially end is the year 2060.
Newton's 2060 Prophecy
The natural question that comes to mind is how did Newton come up with the year 2060 as his dating for the eschaton (end of the world)? The ancient Hebrew calender, before the advent of our modern calender, was 360 days a year. Newton used the numerical figure of 1,260 as his basis for interpreting specific passages of scripture in the Book of Revelation.
This specific number occurs five times in the Book of Revelation. These are as follows:
1. Revelation 11:2- The holy city of Jerusalem shall be trampled for 42 months (1260 days).
2. Revelation 11:3- Two witnesses clothed in sackcloth shall be prophesy for 1,260 days.
3.Revelation 12:6- The woman fled into the wilderness where she and her seed shall be nourished by God for 1,260 days.
4.Revelation 12:14- The woman was given the great wings of an eagle so that she could escape for the serpent into the wilderness so that she can be nourished for 1,260 days.
5. Revelation 13:5-7- The beast exercised authority for 42 months (1,260) where he made war on the saints in order to conquer them.
This shows that 1260 is a very significant number in biblical prophecy, and Newton took this specific number and utilized a time frame for the beginning and ending of this prophetic episode. He turned 1,260 days into years, thereby using Ezekiel's formula and started with the year 800 AD and ended with the year 2060. But what was so special about the year 800 AD?
Charlemagne and the Holy Roman Empire
In the year 800 A.D., Pope Leo III crowned Charlemagne Emperor on Christmas day and this began what is known to history as the Holy Roman empire. Newton believed that the Holy Roman Empire marked the beginning of the end of prophetic days. He believed that this empire was fulfilled by one of Daniel's prophecies concerning the great statue that represented five successive world kingdoms followed by a stone that crushed them all.
He also coincided the 1,260 days with the longest prophecy in the Bible by Daniel, which consisted of 2300 days. These also he turned into years. In 1704, Newton penned a letter to an acquaintance concerning his interpretation into these matters. This letter is now on display at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. However, more surprisingly is that Newton also comes up with the year 2132. How did this come about?
Pope Leo II Crowns Charlemagne Emporer of the Holy Roman Empire
Newton's Predicts the Apocalypse
Daniel's 2300 Day Prophecy
Daniel's 2300 day prophecy is the longest prophecy in the entire Bible. This particular prophecy is vital for understanding the end of days, but few people including theologians understand because they do not know where to begin or how to mathematically calculate the 2300 days. Daniel 8: 13-14 reads as follows:
'Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint which spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot? And he said, unto two thousand and three hundred days, then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.
Although Newton does not reveal in his letter with how he came up with the year 2132, it is quite possible that he allegorized this prophecy to come to this conclusion. In Biblical theology, this is called the law of double interpretation. This means that a prophecy can have both a literal and a spiritual connotation. In the literal sense, the prophecy was fulfilled when Judas Maccabeus restored the temple after it had been desecrated by Antiochus Epiphanes.
But in a spiritual aspect the prophecy has the capacity to extend to the year 2132. This prophetic conclusion is reached by allegorizing the 2300 days into years and multiplying it by the Babylonian lunar calendar which is 354.3 days. This comes to 814, 890 days. Daniel prophesied that the abomination of desolation would occur, and it did in the year 168 B.C. when Antiochus IV desecrated the temple and the holy vessels.
2300 years is the time frame between 168 B.C. and 2132 A.D. Therefore, the cleansing of the sanctuary, in a spiritual sense, would be the end times church. However, there is a problem. We have a different calendar. But if you translate the Babylonian lunar calendar into the Gregorian solar calendar you come to the year of 2064! You simply divide the 814,890 days by 365 days which gives the number/year 2232. Subtract 168 years from before Christ and you get the year 2064. The Book of Revelation teaches that the Great Tribulation would last 1260 days, which is three and a half years. If you subtract this figure from 2064, you get the year 2060 and the beginning of the tribulation!
Whether Newton knew this or not was and is unknown, but if he didn't this is a huge coincidence. How else did he come up with the year 2132? Only time will tell, but one thing is certain and that is things and events are growing worse and worse and the year 2060 (only 41 years away) seems like a very plausible year for the apocalypse. But again, only time will reveal if the English polymath was indeed a kind of theological prophet.