Evangelist Anne Graham Lotz has warned that the Great American Eclipse expected later this month could be a sign that God's severe judgment is soon coming on America.
Lotz, the daughter of world renowned evangelist Billy Graham and founder of AnGeL Ministries, recently took to her website to comment on the August 21 eclipse, which will be visible across the entire contiguous United States.
In a blog post titled "Is God's Judgment Coming on America?" Lotz first quoted Joel 2:31 - "The sun will be turned to darkness...before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord. "
"A few years ago I was teaching through the book of Joel when the ancient words of his prophecy came up off the page," she said. "I knew with hair-raising certainty that God's severe judgment was coming on America! I have taught Joel several times since. Each time has served to confirm with deep conviction that God is warning America of impending disaster and destruction."
The evangelist explained that she felt "compelled to issue the warning once again."
"The warning is triggered by the total solar eclipse of Aug. 21, nicknamed America's Eclipse. For the first time in almost 100 years, a total solar eclipse will be seen from coast to coast in our nation," she wrote. "People are preparing to mark this significant event with viewing parties at exclusive prime sites. The celebratory nature regarding the eclipse brings to my mind the Babylonian King Belshazzar who threw a drunken feast the night the Medes and Persians crept under the city gate."
While Belshazzar and his friends partied and had a good time, "they were oblivious to the impending danger," said Lotz.
"Belshazzar wound up dead the next day, and the Babylonian empire was destroyed," she said, explaining that Jewish rabbis have traditionally seen solar eclipses as "warnings from God to Gentile nations."
"Therefore, my perspective on the upcoming phenomenon is not celebratory," Lotz wrote. "While no one can know for sure if judgment is coming on America, it does seem that God is signaling us about something. Time will tell what that something is."
Lotz also shared a YouTube video of a message given by Pastor Steve Cioccolanti of Discover Ministries, titled "Is the USA in the Bible? Great American Eclipse Aug 21st, 2017 a Real End Time Sign?"
"Pastor Steve articulates the warning in a very clear, undeniable, yet undogmatic way based on his understanding of biblical truth," Lotz said.
"Please be assured that balancing God's warning is His plea for us to return to Him and rend our hearts in sincere, heartfelt repentance," she continued. "I can almost hear the tears in Joel's voice as he pleads for us to repent and return to God, because 'Who knows? He may return and have pity and leave behind a blessing' (Joel 2:13-14)."
Lotz concluded by pointing out that regardless of whether or not the conjecture regarding America's Eclipse is accurate, the U.S. and the world are already in "turmoil."
"Without doubt this is the time for God's people to get right with God. To repent of our own sin. To share the Gospel with our neighbors. And to pray that in the midst of His coming wrath, God would remember mercy," she said.
This is not the first time Lotz has warned of God's impending wrath; last year, she said that God has removed himself from the United States and will soon judge the country for its rejection of Christianity.
"Romans 1 describes the type of judgment where we sin, and we refuse to repent of our sin, then He backs away from us," Lotz told CBN when asked about the spiritual health of the nation.
"He removes Himself from us and He turns us over to ourselves. That's what I think I see in America. I believe we're entering into that phase of judgment, where God is backing away."
Lotz argued that certain events that have occurred in recent years signal the end times, such as the birth of the modern state of Israel, the rise of Islamic extremism, and major natural disasters.
"So when something is record-breaking, which the earthquakes, the snowstorms, the floods - they are record-breaking - that's increasing in intensity," Lotz said.
"When they increase in frequency - so it's not just one historic flood this year, but now it's like this month, and now it's this week, and it's just - they're ratcheting up in frequency and in intensity."