The 360 Day Year, the Exodus, the Mayans and Calendar Chaos


                        How long was the original year?  Was there ever a 360 day year?

                        Was time and the length of the year changed during human history?

                        What happened?  What does ancient history and the Bible reveal?

                        Why is the “prophetic year” 360 days in length?  When did the

                        year and calendar change?  Here is shocking new revelation about

                        the consequences of sin and rebellion against God and His laws!

                        Here’s a new look at the ramifications of the Exodus!


William F. Dankenbring


            Much of Biblical prophecy seems to be based on a 360 day year, but as we all know, the solar year is 365.25 days in length.  Was the original calendar a solar calendar, and was the original year precisely 360 days in length?  


The Original Year


            Let’s notice an obscure statement regarding the length of the months during the Noachian deluge.  We read in Genesis 7:11, “in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on that day all the fountains of the great deep burst forth, and the windows of the heaven were opened” (Gen.7:11).  Then we read:  “At the end of one hundred fifty days the waters had abated; and in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat” (Gen.8:3-4).  The Flood lasted five months, to the very day, and those five months equaled 150 days.  Simple division shows us that therefore 5 months of 150 days each gives 30 days per month.  Therefore, 12 months would have been precisely 360 days!


            This indicates that the original calendar of mankind was a 360-day calendar, at least up until the Flood.  (From this ancient calendar, we derive the “circle” which has 360 degrees, dating back to the primeval past). 


            Is this possible? 


            The Flood occurred in the year 2348 B.C.  God brought His people Israel out of Egypt in 1491 B.C.  There is a difference of  857 years.  When God brought Israel out of Egypt, He caused awesome plagues to strike that country, which brought the world’s first great “superpower” to its knees and shattered the country, causing widespread destruction and devastation.  These plagues were so great, says Immanuel Velikovsky in his epochal book Worlds in Collision, that the effects had global ramifications.  When God caused the Red Sea to fly upwards, creating a channel for His people to pass through dryshod, the dynamics of the miracle had worldwide implications. 


Awesome Miracles of the Exodus


            The Bible itself bears record to this cataclysm.  Notice!  “When Israel went out of Egypt . . . The sea saw it and fled; Jordan turned back.  The mountains skipped like rams, the little hills like lambs . . . TREMBLE, O earth, at the presence of the LORD, at the presence of the God of Jacob” (Psalm 114:1-8).


            David wrote, “The nations raged, the kingdoms were moved; He uttered His voice, the earth melted” (Psalm 46:6).   “Come, behold the works of the LORD, who has made desolations in the earth.  He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two; He burns the chariot in the fire” (verses 8-9).


            “A fire goes before Him, and burns up His enemies round about.  His lightnings enlightened the world; the earth saw and trembled.  The hills melted like wax at the presence of the LORD, at the presence of the LORD of the whole earth” (Psalm 97:3-5). 


            “He looks on the earth, and it trembles; He touches the hills, and they smoke” (Psalm 104:32).


            David also wrote, “The voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness; the LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.  The voice of the LORD makes the deer give birth, and strips the forest bare” (Psalm 29:8-9).


            Deborah, in the book of Judges, also spoke of the time when God intervened on behalf of His people in a way the whole world witnessed, and felt.  She wrote, “LORD, when you went out from Seir, when You marched from the field of Edom, the earth trembled, and the heavens poured, the clouds also poured water; the mountains gushed [Hebrew, “flowed”] before the LORD, this Sinai, before the LORD God of Israel” (Judges 5:4-5).


Mount Sinai


            Immanuel Velikovsky, a phenomenal Jewish scholar and historian, and friend of Albert Einstein, wrote dramatically of this period, when Israel came out of Egypt, and stood before God Himself at Mount Sinai:


                        “The Talmud and Midrashim describe the Mountain of the Law-giving

                        as quaking so greatly that it appeared as if it were lifted up and shaken

                        above the heads of the people; and the people felt as if they were no

                        longer standing securely on the ground, but were held up by some

                        invisible force [cf. Ginzberg, Legends, II, 92, 95]” (Worlds in Collision,



            Writing of the time of God’s intervention, David declared, “Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations of the hills also quaked and were shaken, because He was angry.  Smoke went up from His nostrils, and devouring fire from His mouth; coals were kindled by it.  He bowed the heavens also, and came down with darkness under His feet   . . . . The LORD thundered from heaven, and the Most High uttered His voice, hailstones and coals of fire.  He sent out His arrows and scattered the foe, lightnings in abundance, and He vanquished them.  Then the channels of the sea were seen, the foundations of the world were uncovered, at Your rebuke, O LORD, at the blast of the breath of Your nostrils” (Psalm 18:7-15).         


            The prophet Habakkuk describes it, “God came from Teman, the Holy One from Mount Paran.  Selah.  His glory covered the heavens, and the earth was full of His praise.  His brightness was like the light; He had rays flashing from His hand, and there His power was hidden.  Before Him went pestilence, and fever followed at His feet.  He stood and measured the earth; He looked and startled the nations.  And the everlasting mountains were scattered, the perpetual hills bowed . . . . You divided the earth with rivers.  The mountains saw You and TREMBLED; the overflowing of the water passed by.  The deep uttered its voice, and lifted its hands on high.  The SUN AND MOON STOOD STILL in their habitation. . . . You walked through the sea with Your horses, through the HEAP of great waters” (Hab.3:3-15).


            Of that awesome time, there is none like it, in all the history of the earth.  It was a cosmic convulsion.  Apparently, at this time, the whole earth was in distress and severely affected.  The fourth book of Ezra, part of the apocalyptic literature of the Jews from ancient times, declares:  “Thou didst bow down the heavens, didst make the earth quake, and convulsed the world.  Thou didst cause the deeps to tremble and didst alarm the spheres.”


            Isaiah describes it thus:  “Oh, that You would rend [tear open, margin] the heavens!  That you would come down!  That the mountains might shake at Your presence – as fire burns brushwood, as fire causes water to boil – to make Your name known to Your adversaries.  That the nations may tremble at Your presence!  When You did AWESOME THINGS for which we did not look, You came down, the mountains shook at Your presence” (Isaiah 64:1-3).


            Isaiah goes on, “For since the beginning of the world men have not heard nor perceived by the ear, nor has the eye seen any God besides You, who acts for the one who waits for Him.  You meet him who rejoices and does righteousness, who remembers You in Your ways” (Isaiah 64:4-5).


            The intervention of Almighty God in the days of the Exodus has been totally ignored by the skeptical, dubious, unbelieving world.  Even Christians and Jews have not appreciated its sound and fury or grasped its worldwide tectonic repercussions.  Many have assumed these statements in the Bible are mere poetry, but that is not the case. 


            That was a time when the very heavenly bodies were shaken out of their orbits.  Forty years later, in the days of Joshua and the conquest of Canaan, as the enemies of Israel fled, “the LORD cast down GREAT STONES from heaven on them as far as Azekah, and they died.  There were more who died from the hailstones [“stones of barad] than the children of Israel killed with the sword” (Joshua 10:11).  These hailstones were stones of barad in the Hebrew language, referring to fiery stones or meteorites which fell like hail from heaven – a blazing meteor shower that pummeled the armies of the Canaanites.  Says Velikovsky:


                        “The meteorites fell on the earth in a torrent.  They must have fallen in

                        very great numbers for they struck down more warriors than the swords

                        of the adversaries.  To have killed persons by the hundreds or thousands

                        in the field, a cataract of stones must have fallen.  Such a torrent of great

                        stones would mean that a train of meteorites or a comet had struck our

                        planet” (Worlds in Collision, page 43).


            At that same time, “the sun stood still, and the moon stopped,, till the people had revenge upon their enemies” (verse 13).


            In fact, Joshua relates, “And there has been no day like that, before or after it, that the LORD heeded the voice of a man; for the LORD fought for Israel” (v.14).


            The Exodus was a time of earth shattering experiences, felt around the world.  The Mayan sacred book Popol-Vuh speaks of the time when God “rolled mountains,” “removed mountains,” and “great and small mountains moved and shaked.  Mountains were raised from flat lands, and other mountains were flattened (Velikovsky, op cit., p.93).


            Isaiah the prophet describes the scene on earth.  He declared, describing the time of God’s intervention, “Behold, the LORD makes the earth empty and makes it a waste, distorts its surface and scatters abroad its inhabitants.  The earth is also defiled under its inhabitants, because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant.  Therefore the CURSE has devoured the earth, and those who dwell in it are desolate.  Therefore the inhabitants of the earth are BURNED, and few men are left. . . . Fear and the pit and the snare are upon you, O inhabitant of the earth.  And it shall be that he who flees from the noise of the fear shall fall into the pit, and he who comes up from the midst of the pit shall be caught in the snare; for the windows from on high are open, and the foundations of the earth are shaken.  The earth is violently broken, the earth is split open, the earth is shaken exceedingly, the earth shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall totter like a hut; its transgression shall be heavy upon it, and it will fall, and not rise again” (Isaiah 24:1-20).


            “Then the moon will be disgraced and the sun ashamed; for the LORD of hosts will reign on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem and before His elders gloriously” (verse 23).


            These verses in Isaiah are prophetic for the future – but they also look back to the time of the Exodus of Israel out of Egypt!  It was an earth-shaking orogeny – a time of massive continental changes, mountain ranges rising, others flattened, lava flows, and floods, with widespread shifting of populations, and death and destruction. 


            In his book Worlds in Collision, Immanuel Velikovsky gathers evidence from around the world, north, south, east and west, including the Americas, that testify to the incredible scourge and affliction that struck every region of the globe at that ancient time.


Sunrise, Sunset Reversed


            Everyone knows that planet earth rotates from west to east, causing the sun to rise in the eastern sky and to set in the western horizon.  Interestingly, ancient Egyptian priests told the Greek historian Herodotus that within the historical ages since Egypt became a kingdom, “four times in this period (so they told me) the sun rose contrary to his wont; twice he rose where he now sets, and twice he set where he now rises” (Herodotus, Bk.II, 142).


            Many commentators have speculated about this enigmatic passage.  What could they have meant?  As Velikovsky states, “there is no way to reconcile the passage with present-day natural science” (p.106).  It is the despair of commentators! 


            The Egyptian “Magical Papyrus”, says Velikovsky, “speaks of a cosmic upheaval of fire and water when ‘the sound becomes north, and the Earth turns over.’”  In the Papyrus Ipuwer, which dates to the time of the Exodus and is an Egyptian eye-witness to the plagues God cast upon that land, we read “the land turns round [over] as does a pottere’s wheel,” and the “Earth turned upside down” (Papyrus Ipuwer 2:8).  The Ermitage Papyrus also mentions a catastrophe which turned the “land upside down; happens that which never (yet) had happened” (Gardiner, Journal of Egyptian Archaeology, I; Cambridge Ancient History, I, 346, quoted in Velikovsky).


            Are we to take these statements seriously? 


            “In the tomb of Senmut, the architect of Queen Hatshepsut, a panel on the ceiling shows the celestial sphere with the signs of the Zodiac and other constellations in ‘a reversed orientation’ of the southern sky,” says Immanuel Velikovsky (p.108).  These things don’t happen by accident, or foolishness.  The astronomical ceiling chart must have been a venerated chart proving that at some time in ancient Egypt the sky’s evening constellations were reversed!  In the chart, Orion appears to be moving eastward – the wrong direction!


            Interestingly, Plato also wrote in one of his dialogs, “I mean the change in the rising and setting of the sun and other heavenly bodies,  how in those times they used to set in the quarter where they now rise, and used to rise where they now set” (page 109).


            Plato said of such times of change, “There is at that time great destruction of animals in general, and only a small part of the human race survives.”


            Writes Immanuel Velikovsky, “The reversal of the movement of the sun was referred to by many Greek authors before and after Plato.  According to a short fragment of a historical drama by Sophocles (Atreas), the sun rises in the east only since its course was reversed.  ‘Zeus . . . changed the course of the sun, causing it to rise in the east and not in the west’” (p.109-110).  Euripides wrote in Electra, “The sun . . . turned backward . . . with the scourge of his wrath in affliction repaying mortals.”


            Seneca in his drama Thyestes gave a vivid description of what occurs when the sun turns backward in the sky, the people smitten with fear, the question being asked:  “Have we of all mankind been deemed deserving that heaven, its poles uptorn, should overwhelm us?  In our time has the last day come?” (Thyestes, II, 794).


            In Timaeus, Plato describes the effects of the earth “overtaken by a tempest of winds,” with “alien fire,” and waters of “the immense flood which foamed in and streamed out,” and with the planet earth itself moving erratically, “forwards and backwards, and again to right and to left, and upwards and downwards, wandering every way in all the six directions” (p.111).


            This sounds very similar to the words of Isaiah in chapter 24 of his prophetic inspired writings!


            The traditions of many people around the globe agree that the sun once rose where it now sets.  This includes Egypt, people living south of Egypt, ancient China, the Syrian city Ugarit (Ras Shamra), Greece, Mexico, and the Eskimos of Greenland. 


            Ancient Hebrew sources on the phenomenon are numerous.  In Genesis we read of the Noachian Deluge:  “And it came to pass after seven days that the waters of the flood were upon the earth. . . on that day all the fountains of the great deep were broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened” (Gen.7:10-11).


            In Tractate Sanhedrin of the Talmud, we read that the Gemara says:  ‘After seven’ – during the period of the flood, the Holy One, blessed be He, changed the natural order that had been established during the seven days of creation, so that the sun rose in the West, and set in the East” (Tractate Sanhedrin 108B).


            Says Velikovsky, Tevel is the Hebrew name for the world in which the sun rose in the west, and Arabot is the name of the sky where the rising point was in the west.  Hai Gaon, a rabbinical authority (989-1038 A.D.) in his Responses refers to the cosmic  changes where the sun rose in the west and set in the east.


            Whether or not the sun’s actual rising is one of the things that changed at the Exodus, we do know that great convulsions shook planet earth, and it was moved out of its former orbit.  Says Velikovsky,


                        “The Talmud and other ancient rabbinical sources tell of great disturbances

                        in the solar movement at the time of the Exodus and the Passage of the Sea

                        and the Lawgiving.  In old Midrashim it is repeatedly narrated that four

                        times the sun was forced out of its course in the few weeks between the

                        day of the Exodus and day of the Lawgiving” (Worlds in Collision, p.116).


            In Midrash Rabba, it is stated that on the authority of Rabbi Simon “that a new world order came into being with the end of the sixth world age at the revelation on Mount Sinai.  ‘There was a weakening (metash) of the creation.  Hitherto world time was counted, but henceforth we count it by a different reckoning.  Midrash Rabba refers also to ‘the greater length of time taken by some planets’” (ibid., p.124-125).


            This suggests that there was a change in the movements of the sun, moon, earth and planets at the time of the Exodus.  A change in the way “world time was counted” came about, with a “different reckoning” being used after the Exodus!


Changes in Times and Seasons


            It was a time of great transition, disruption, and global turbulence.  The Word of God points out that the seasons are governed by the sun, moon and stars (Gen.1:14-16).  The word for “seasons” in the Scriptures is moadim, “the appointed times.”  But at the Exodus, the times became “out of joint,” due to the cosmic changes that occurred.  For a time all was unsettled.  The Egyptian Papyrus Anastasi IV declares, “The winter is come as [instead of] summer, the months are reversed and the hours are disordered” (A. Erman, Egyptian Literature, p.139, Velikovsky, p.120).


            Ancient Chinese documents reveal that Emperor Yahou sent astronomers to the Valley of Obscurity “to observe the new movements of the sun and of the moon and the syzygies or the orbital points of the conjunctions, also ‘to investigate and to inform the people of the order of the seasons.’  It is also said that Yahou introduced a calendar reform: he brought the seasons into accord with the observations; he did the same with the months; and he ‘corrected the days’” (p.121).


            States Dr. Velikovsky, “The oral traditions of primitive peoples in various parts of the world also retain memories of the change in the movement of the heavenly bodies, the seasons, the flow of time, during a period when darkness enveloped the world” (ibid.).  This was the time of the Exodus, when a plague of darkness unlike any seen before fell on ancient Egypt.  “Then the LORD said to Moses, Stretch out your hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, darkness which may even be felt.  So Moses stretched out his hand toward heaven, and there was thick darkness in all the land of Egypt three days.  They did not see one another; nor did anyone rise from his place for three days” (Exo.10:21-22).   The Hebrew word for “thick” here is aphelah and means “concealment, dark, darkness, gloominess, thick” (Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance), or “thick and dense darkness; it often furnishes an image of wretchedness” (Gesenius’ Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon to the Old Testament).


            This darkness was remembered around the world.  The Oraibi Indians of Arizona have a tradition that the heavens hung low and the world was dark, and no sun, moon or stars were seen. “The people murmured because of the darkness and the cold” (Velikovsky, p.121).


            Says Immanuel Velikovsky, “With the end of the Middle Kingdom in Egypt, when the Israelites left that country, the old order of seasons came to an end and a new world age began.  The fourth book of Ezra, which borrows from some earlier sources, refers to the ‘end of the seasons’ in these words:  ‘I sent him [Moses] and led my people out of Egypt, and brought them to Mount Sinai, and held him by me for many days.  I told him many wondrous things, showed him the secrets of the times, declared to him the end of the seasons’” (p.123, IV Ezra 14:4).


            Velikovsky goes on: 


                        “Because of the various simultaneous changes in the movement of the

                        earth and the moon, and because observation of the sky was hindered

                        when it was hidden in smoke and clouds, the calendar could not be

                        correctly computed; the changed lengths of the year, the month, and

                        the day required prolonged, unobstructed observation.  The words of

                        the Midrashim that Moses was unable to understand the new calendar,

                        refer to this situation; ‘the secrets of the calendar’ (sod ha-avour), or

                        more precisely, ‘the secret of the transition’ from one timereckoning

                        to another, was revealed to Moses, but he had difficulty in compre-

                        hending it.  Moreover, it is said in rabbinical sources that in the time

                        of Moses the course of the heavenly bodies became confounded.


                        “The month of the Exodus, which occurred in the spring, became the

                        first month of the year. . . . Thus, the strange situation was created in

                        the Jewish calendar that the New Year is observed in the seventh

                        month of the year: the beginning of the calendar year was moved to a

                        point about half a year away from the New Year in the autumn” (p.123). 


            Why create a “new” calendar at the time of the Exodus?  The idea that it is merely a “religious” calendar seems very lacking in demonstration.  It simply does not make much sense.  Velikovsky gets at the heart of the matter.  He declares:


                        “With the fall of the Middle Kingdom and the Exodus, one of the

                        great world ages came to its end.  The four quarters of the world

                        were displaced, and neither the orbit nor the poles nor, probably,

                        the direction of rotation remained the same.  The calendar had to

                        be adjusted anew.  The astronomical values of the year and the day

                        could not be the same before and after an upheaval in which, as

                        the quoted Papyrus Anastasi IV says, the months were reversed 

                        and ‘the hours disordered’” (p.123).      


            It seems very logical, therefore, that the displacment of the heavens was  the chief reason WHY God introduced to HIS PEOPLE a NEW CALENDAR at the TIME of the Exodus!  It was a time of miracles, wonders, cataclysm, and global holocaust!


A New Calendar


            At that very time, according to the book of Exodus, God instituted a NEW calendar for His people! We read in Exodus 12, when God instituted the Passover celebration for His people:  ‘Now the LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, ‘This month shall be your beginning of months; it shall be the first month of the year to you” (Exo.12:1-2). 


            Prior to that time, from the time of Adam and Eve and Creation, the years had been counted from fall to fall reckoning.  But now God introduced a NEW calendar!  In this calendar, each month began with a new moon, and the year began in the SPRING!  Being a luni-solar calendar, since the new moon appears every 29.5 days, the months varied between 29 and 30 days, to adjust for the fraction of a day.  The 12 month year varied from a minimum of 354 days, to a maximum of 385 days – as in a leap year when an extra month had to be inserted (seven years during every 19-year time cycle, to make the total lunar years equal to the solar years in every 19 years). 


            Judging from the evidence, this change was necessitated due to the change in the earth’s orbit around the sun at the time of the Exodus!  The earth “fell down,” i.e. its orbit changed, and hasn’t changed back to the original orbit since that time! 


            The length of the year changed from 360 days, to the modern calendar’s 365.25 days, in a solar year.  Apparently the orbit of the moon also changed, from a 30 day orbit to one of 29.5 days.  All this caused a need to change the calendar!  


The 360 Day Year in Ancient History


            Immanuel Velikovsky points out in Worlds in Collision that, “Numerous evidences are preserved which prove that prior to the year of 365 ¼ days, the year was only 360 days long” (p.330).  He states that in ancient India, “The texts of the Veda period know a year of only 360 days.”  Passages in which this length of year are clearly stated are found in all the Brahmanas.  Those texts nowhere mention an intercalary period of five extra days which are currently part of the solar year.  Dr. Velikovsky goes on, “This Hindu year of 360 days is divided into twelve months of thirty days each.  The texts describe the moon as crescent for fifteen days and waning for another fifteen days; they also say that the sun moved for six months or 180 days to the north and for the same number of days to the south” (p.331).


            In their astronomical works, the Brahmans used “very ingenious geometric methods,” Velikovsky states, and so their apparent “failure” to discern that the year of 360 days was 5 ¼ days too short seemed baffling to western historians.  Their perplexity fails to account for the fact that the terrestrial year may have once been 360 days.


            In the ancient Persian calendar, “The ancient Persian year was composed of 360 days or twelve months of thirty days each.  In the seventh century [B.C.] five Gatha days were added to the calendar,” Velikovsky continues (p.332). 


            The old Babylonian year was also 360 days.  Ctesias wrote that the walls of Babylon were 360 furlongs in compass, “as many as there had been days in the year” (quoted on page 333).  The Babylonians divided the heavens into 36 decans, a decan being the space the sun moved relative to the fixed stars in a 10-day period.  36 decans in a year would make a year of 360 days – no more, no less. 


            Historians realize that at first the Babylonians recognized a year of 360 days, “and the division of a circle into 360 degrees must have indicated the path traversed by the sun each day in its assumed circling of the earth” (Cantor, Vorlesungen uber Geschichte der Mathematik, I, 92, quoted by Velikovsky).


            The ancient Assyrians also had a 360 day year with each month containing 30 days.  Assyrian documents refer to months of 30 days each, only, and count the months from the moon’s crescent to crescent.  These facts all puzzle astronomers who cannot understand why all these ancient civilizations were so consistently erroneous in their calculation of the months and the year. 


            The ancient Mayans, half way around the world, also had a year of 360 days, in remote antiquity.  The Mexicans, at the time of the conquest, called a thirty-day period a moon, even though they knew that the moon’s synodical period is 29.5209 days.  Their calculations were even more accurate than the Gregorian calendar. Says Velikovsky, “Obviously, they adhered to an old tradition dating from the time when the year had twelve months of thirty days each, 360 days in all” (p.339).


            Similarly, in ancient China the people had a year divided into twelve months of 30 days each, comprising a 360 day year.  Says Velikovsky, “A relic of the system of 360 days is the still persisting division of the sphere into 360 degrees; each degree represented the diurnal advance of the earth on its orbit, or that portion of the zodiac which was passed over from one night to the next.  After 360 changes the stellar sky returned to the same position for the observer on the earth” (p.340).  After the year changed from 360 days to 365 ¼, the Chinese added 5 ¼ days to their year. 


            Suffice it to say, the 360 day year is well attested to in ancient history.  


Jewish Authorities


            The 360-day usage in calculating Biblical prophecy, therefore, seems to be a carry-over from the ancient world and its times and seasons, prior to the shift and alteration in the calendar which occurred during the time of Moses and the Exodus.


            Jewish authorities themselves seem to be somewhat cognizant of this fact.  The Mechilta of R’Shimon bar Yochai and the Midrash HaGadol on Exodus 12:2 say, “ ‘This month is for you’ – The forefathers did not count from it.”  The Melchilta of R’Yishmael says on the same verse, “ ‘This month is for you’ – Adam did not count from it.”  Says Aish (, “in other words, the entire concept of calculating months based on the moon and starting from Nisan did not apply before the Jews left Egypt.  Similarly, R’ Avraham bar Chiya HaNasi (early 12th century) writes in his Sefer Halbbur 2:5, arguably the most important book ever written on the Jewish calendar, ‘Observing this commandment, that is the lunar month and the intercalation of the year, we were obligated only from the Exodus.’  R’Yitzchak HaYisraeli (4th century) writes similarly in his Yesod Olam 4:2.  Indeed, the Midrash Sechel Tov on Genesis 34:25 says outright that solar months were used until G-d commanded ‘This month is for you’” (italics mine).


            Why did the world and the Jews use solar months instead of lunar months prior to the Exodus?  Hints that this was so are indicated in the books of Jubilees and Enoch, extra-canonical ancient Jewish literature. 


            As Dr. Velikovsky demonstrates, great changes occurred in the cosmos at the time of the Exodus, which necessitated a change.  If the original solar calendar was a 360-day calendar, with 30 day lunar months, then it would be true that “Adam [also] used lunar months and that this continued throughout the time of the patriarchs,” as Pirkei DeRabbi Eliezer says.  Declares, “However, as we have shown, there are many sources that say that solar months were used before the Exodus” (ibid.).   How could this have been true if the solar year differed from the lunar year?  Such a practice would have caused disruption in the months and annual holy days.  The book of Jubilees shows that the annual holy days, which depend on the new moons, were observed during the times of Noah, Abraham, and the patriarchs! 


The “Prophetic Year”


            The Bible itself uses the 360 day year in calculating the “prophetic years” in prophecy.  A 360-day year is called a “prophetic year” by students of Bible prophecy. 


            As many Scriptural commentators have pointed out years ago, a “time” equals a “year” in prophetic fulfillment.  In the book of Revelation, we find “the woman” – a reference to the Church of God – is to be protected “in the wilderness” for “1260 days” (Rev.12:6).  Later on in the same chapter, we read that the woman is to be protected in the wilderness for “a time, times, and half a time” – three and one half “times” (Rev.12:14).   Thus 1260 days equals 3 ½ times.  Simple division shows us that dividing 1260 days by 3 ½, gives us 360 days in a “time.”  This implies that a “year” in prophecy calculations refers to a period of 360 days – yet the real year today is 365.25 days in length.  Why this anomaly?  This seems very strange.  What mystery lies at the root of this question?


Why, then, does the Bible use the 360-day calendar, where 1260 days equals 3 ½ years (Rev.12:6, 14), which also equals 42 months (Rev.13:5)?   The Bible speaks of no other year existing before the 360 day calendar of the Flood (derived from 5 months equaling 150 days, or 30 days per month, as in the 360-day year). 


My own belief is that the 360 day year is the “original” year, which existed from Adam to the Flood and possibly to the Exodus, when God instituted a NEW calendar (Exo.12:1), due to phenomenal changes in the earth’s orbit caused by the awesome plagues which fell upon Egypt at the Exodus – when many miracles occurred, and God Himself came down to Mount Sinai.  This original calendar will be re-instituted when the Messiah returns and “restores all things.”  The knowledge of this original 360-day “year” was preserved and used in the prophetic writings, as a reminder that it is important and ought to be remembered.  So we use it as the “idealized” year when calculating prophecies, and ignore the fractions and complexities of the temporary “present” Roman calendar.


A “prophetic year” contains 360 days, apparently based on the fact that the original “year” was 360 days in length.  Evidence that the year was once 360 days in length is found in many places, as we have seen. 


The Mayan Calendar


Like the ancient calender of Noah’s time, the Mayan calendar also has 360 days in a year.  It also dates to a time before the Noachian deluge. 


            According to the Mayan calendar, we are now living in the Mayan “end times.”  The Great Cycle of the Mayan Long Count calendar ends at the winter solstice in 2012 A.D., less than eight years from now.


            In Mayan mythology, the winter solstice sun corresponds to the deity known as One Hunahpu, or “First Father.”  The dark rift of the Milky Way, in Mayan cosmology, is known as the “Black Road,” the mouth of the Cosmic Monster, and the birth canal of the Cosmic Mother. 


            The Mayan calendar has a Great Cycle, ending 13 “bactuns” or a period of 5,125 years.  To the ancient Mayans, this conjunction of the sun and Milky Way center or mid-point will occur on the winter solstice, December 21, in 2012 A.D. This date represents a major transition point, the creation of a new World Age.


            The Mayan Long Count calendar is strikingly different from the Roman calendar, or any other for that matter.  A “month” is 20 days, and 18 months is a year of 360 days.  Twenty 360 day years comprise a “katun,” and a “baktun” is 20 katun, equaling 144,000 days. 


            The number 144,000 is very interesting, as it is the number of the “firstfruits” redeemed to God at the coming of the Messiah (Rev.14:1-4).


            Authorities agree that the Mayan Long Count calendar began August 11, 3114 B.C. (Gregorian calendar).  Why it begins at this date is anybody’s guess.  This would have been during the life of the prophet Enoch, who was born in 3545 B.C. He lived for 365 years before he “was taken,” in 3180 B.C.  Methuselah was born in 3480 B.C. and lived for 969 years.  So the Mayan calendar begins 76 years after Enoch disappeared (was taken to a place of safety from his many enemies), and 376 years after Methuselah was born. 


            The present Great Age of the Mayas, the fifth, is believed to have been initiated by the famous Quetzalcoatl in 3,113 B.C.  Who was this figure?  Could it have been no less than Enoch the prophet, himself? 


Quetzalcoatl was the “plumed serpent” of the Aztec mythology, the “god” of learning and of the priesthood.  He was an ancient ruler who was subsequently deified and identified with the planet Venus – the morning and evening star – and as a “god” of vegetation.  He was a benign figure, a teacher, and his name became the title for Mexican high priests.  The name became frequent in early Mexican history, like Roosevelt or Adams.  There are many traditions about his arrival, and departure. He taught the way of peace.  He was noted as “the bringer of civilization and good ways of life, who was frequently locked in conflict with gods of evil” (The Indian Heritage of America, Alvin M. Josephy, Jr., p.201).  Aztec legends say he sailed across the sea, but would one day return. 


The patriarch Enoch was also a priestly figure before the Flood, and a man of vast learning and understanding. 


Immanuel Velikovsky points out that during the time of Quetzalcoatl, according to ancient Mexican records, many people died, that “the sun refused to show itself and during four days the world was deprived of light” (quoting Brasseur; see Worlds in Collision, page 157).  At that time, according to legends from Polynesian peoples, “the earth was battered by countless fragments,” says Velikovsky (p.160). 


During that time the sequence of seasons and the duration of days and nights became disarranged.


Says Velikovsky, “When Quetzal-cohuatl, the lawgiver of the Toltecs, disappeared on the approach of a great catastrophe and the Morning Star that bore the same name rose for the first time in the sky, the Toltecs ‘regulated the reckoning of the days, the nights, and the hours according to the difference in time’” (p.177).  Thus when the original Quetzal-cohuatl lived there was a great catastrophe on the earth. 


Could this be why God “took” Enoch, and he “was not found”? (Gen.5:24).  God “took” him to a place of safety, to protect him from the oncoming cataclysm, which was brought about during his time by the wickedness of mankind!  Likewise, God promises to protect His faithful servants during this present age who are zealous for Him and loyal to His truth (Rev.3:10; Luke 21:36; Rev.12:14-17).


In Mayan chronology, 3,113 B.C. is written as  When the cycle or age is complete, in December 2012 A.D., the date will once again be written – a complete cycle of 13 baktuns.   That date will also complete the end of a katun cycle (of 20 years).  The last katun of this Age began in 1992 and will finish in 2012.  The Mayan “glyph” of this katun is “storm” followed by “sun” – a period of darkness, followed by one of light. 


            Note that in esoteric tradition, the number “13” represents Christ, the Messiah!  There were twelve disciples; Jesus as the Christ was “13.”  The number “13” also denotes superabundance – the “baker’s dozen.” 


            Is there any significance to this?  The Mayan calendar is obviously pre-Flood because it is based on a 360-day year which was pre-Flood.  Enoch was a scribe of the Lord, who wrote the book of Enoch, which contains much celestial and calendrical material, as well as prophetic warnings and exhortations.  It may well be that the Mayan calendar was originally inspired and contains material going back to the pre-Flood patriarchs.


            The Long Count calendar began in 3114 B.C. – during the time of Enoch – and its termination date is 2012 A.D., when the cycle will be completed, and a new cycle begins.  This fact certainly seems to be significant when weighed with all the Biblical evidence regarding the prophecies of the “End of Days.”  Read our article, “2012 and the Countdown to Armageddon and the Coming of the Messiah.”


            The origins of the Mayan calendar are obscured by the mists of time.  The Mayas themselves were adept skywatchers.  Their classical period is thought to be from 200-900 A.D.  However, large ruins with Mayan features have been found dating back to before the time of Christ, before the present era began.  The Mayans attributed the origin of their incredibly complex calendar system to a people who existed before them, whose origin was lost in the dim past.


            Researchers believe that the Mayan calendar actually hinges upon its calculated end point.  What is so important about the winter solstice of 2012?  The Milky Way seems to have played an important part in Mayan mythology.  The Mayan Sacred Tree appears to be the crossing point of the sun’s path, the ecliptic, with the Milky Way.  The conjunction of the sun with the Milky Way at the winter solstice in 2012 A.D. appears to have had apocalyptic significance.  The crossing of the Milky Way with the ecliptic represents a doorway – pointing both to the sacred source and origin – the finishing of the old and the beginning of a new birth.  Thus the world, in 2012, is pictured as being at a celestial “crossroads.” 


            To the Mesoamerican Mayas, the approach of the end of a World Age – the time when the winter solstice “Doorway” opened up the Sacred Tree to the Center of the Milky Way and the Heart of the Sky – was a very significant and epochal time.  The Mayan Long Count was also known to the Yucatan Maya as a “prophecy cycle.” 


A New Age Dawning


              Students of the Mayan calendar see this as confirmation that we are indeed living in the twilight of this present age and approaching the beginning of a New Age – the end of one prophetic cycle and the beginning of a new cycle.  The Mayans stated that “time would collapse” at the end of their calendar cycle. 


            The “collapsing of time” is a mysterious phrase.  How would time itself “collapse”?  This could refer to ANOTHER GREAT CHANGE IN THE CALENDAR ITSELF! 


We read in the book of Acts, the apostle Peter’s words of ultimate warning to this END TIME generation, in which we live.  He asserted, “REPENT THEREFORE AND BE CONVERTED, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that He may send Jesus Christ [Yeshua Ha Moshiach], who was preached to you before, whom heaven must receive UNTIL THE TIMES OF RESTORATION OF ALL THINGS, which God has spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began” (Acts 3:19-21).


Peter refers to it as “the time of universal restoration that God announced long ago through his holy prophets” (Acts 3:21, NRSV).


At the end of this age, there will be a “time of refreshing” and “restitution of all things” – which would include the original Calendar itself!  Time itself will return to its former and original order.  This suggests that once again the orbit of the earth itself will be changed, as the prophet Isaiah implies (Isa.24:1, 18-20)! 


The present day calendar, with all its complexities, and confusing fractions seems to reveal a time of great disorder in the cosmos.  But it will be replaced with the original true, pure, calendar, where the lunar year and the solar year are in balance and agreement, and all the universe is once again in harmony and order – called the “restoration of all things” – including time, the planets, their orbits, and the calendar itself!


A “new age” is on the horizon.  A “new world order” is indeed coming – it is right around the corner!  But before that new age appears, in the person of the Messiah who is soon to come to restore order and truth to the world, there is coming a time of universal chaos, disruption, upheaval, and destruction, such as the world has never before witnessed – even in the days of the original Exodus from Egypt and the Flood of Noah! 


Yeshua the Messiah declared it plainly, as did the prophets, from Enoch to Malachi.  He declared, “And there will be GREAT earthquakes in various places, and famines and pestilences; and there will be FEARFUL sights and GREAT signs from heaven [disruption in the cosmos]” (Luke 21:11).  “And there will be signs in the sun, in the moon, and in the stars; and on the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring; men’s hearts failing them from fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth, for the powers of heaven will be shaken” (Luke 21:25-26). 


The prophet Haggai prophesied, “For thus says the LORD of hosts:  ‘Once more (it is a little while) I will SHAKE HEAVEN AND EARTH, the sea and dry land; and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of all nations, and I will fill this [end-time] Temple with glory,’ says the LORD of hosts” (Haggai 2:6-7).