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Winter In History And Prophecy
The English word winter originated from an old Anglo-Saxon word which meant windy and wet. Winter, and the other seasons, are the result of the earth being inclined approximately 23½ degrees to the plane of its orbit around the sun. On December 21 the most direct rays of the sun are over the so-called Tropic of Capricorn at 23½ degrees latitude in the southern hemisphere, thereby causing winter in the northern hemisphere, while on June 21 the most direct rays of the sun are over the so-called Tropic of Cancer at 23½ degrees latitude in the northern hemisphere, thereby causing winter in the southern hemisphere.
"Thou hast set all the borders of the earth: Thou hast made summer and winter"
Winter weather varies tremendously around the world, and the land of Israel itself has a surprising variety of climatic regions, but from the standpoint of Jerusalem, the meaning of that old Anglo-Saxon word for winter, windy and wet, applies generally well. The December to January daily high for Jerusalem averages 55 degrees Fahrenheit / 13 degrees Celsius, and the daily low averages 43 degrees Fahrenheit / 6 degrees Celsius. Most of Jerusalem's rainfall occurs from November to March, with the peak period from the last half of December to the end of February. Snow, although not a common sight in Jerusalem, can occur.
"74:16 The day is thine, the night also is thine: thou hast prepared the light and the sun. 74:17 Thou hast set all the borders of the earth: thou hast made summer and winter [see Christ The Creator]" (Psalm 74:16-17 KJV)
Christ's warning "pray ye that your flight be not in the winter" in the same reference to "the abomination of desolation" is interesting in that the origin of the Jewish festival of Hanukkah (see Christ's Hanukkah; listen also to our Sermon Hanukkah In Prophecy) was directly the result of the original abomination of desolation that will be ultimately repeated and fulfilled at Christ's return. Hanukkah is in winter and so was Christ's "pray ye that your flight be not in the winter" (see Abomination of Desolation - Where?).
"24:15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, whoso readeth, let him understand: 24:16 Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains [see the Fact Finder question below]: 24:17 Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house: 24:18 Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes. 24:19 And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! 24:20 But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day: 24:21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be." (Matthew 24:15-21 KJV)
Fact Finder: How long will the "end time" last? How long will the "abomination of desolation" last?