WASHINGTON – Jonathan Cahn’s “The Mystery of the Shemitah” debuted at No. 5 on Amazon’s Top 100 the day it was released this week, triggering a major reprint on the same day to meet market demand at retail outlets across the nation.
The book hit No. 1 atop the Christian Prophecy category at Amazon.com and several other general-market and Christian trade lists, including Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million and CBD.com.
The sophomore release for Cahn builds on the mysterious biblical prophecy revealed in his million-copy-selling novel, “The Harbinger,” which became a publishing phenomenon and remained on the New York Times best-seller list for more than 110 weeks.
“We know the immeasurable scale of impact Jonathan Cahn’s teachings have, yet we are still amazed by how quickly ‘The Mystery of the Shemitah’ has caught the attention of the nation as a whole,” said Tessie DeVore, Charisma House Book Group executive vice president. “‘The Harbinger’ was only the beginning of a deeply vital cry for Christians to pray for America’s future.”
“The Harbinger,” and “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment,” the documentary movie version of the teaching that inspired the book, introduced readers to the Shemitah (pronounced shmee-TAH), or Sabbath year, and how it relates to the attacks and collapses that America experienced in 2001 and 2008.
But, “The Mystery of the Shemitah” goes further – much further. In his research, the author has found patterns throughout the history of America and the world that line up with the Shemitah, which he explains in the new nonfiction book.
The Shemitah is the seventh year of the seven-year agricultural cycle mandated by the Torah for the land of Israel. Cahn says understanding this seven-year pattern is essential for understanding the prophecies and mysteries of the Bible that are still applicable today.
For instance, Wall Street analysts have pondered the mystery of what appears to be seven-year economic cycles. They’ve also wondered why crashes seem to come in September or the early fall.
In Cahn’s sequel, the messianic rabbi reveals the shocking discovery that the five great economic crashes of the last 40 years – 1973, 1980, 1987, 2001 and 2008 – have all occurred in Shemitah years – those God set apart as Sabbath years.
As he pointed out in his earlier book, in 2001 and 2008 they coincided precisely with the exact end of the Shemitah year on the Hebrew calendar day of Elul 29.
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What does it all mean?
Cahn summed up his message by saying, “America is progressing toward God’s judgment.”
According to the Bible, the Shemitah year was set aside as a blessing for the nation of Israel.
Like the weekly Sabbath, the Shemitah year would be a time of rest for the land and for the agricultural society. There would be no sowing and reaping. Instead, God would provide food miraculously for the people, as He did during the Exodus from Egypt.
Leviticus 25:4 says: “But in the seventh year shall be a Sabbath of rest unto the land, a Sabbath for the Lord: thou shalt neither sow thy field, nor prune thy vineyard.”
However, Cahn points out, if the Shemitah was not observed by the people, it would become a curse, as described later in Leviticus chapter 25. That’s exactly what happened, Cahn says in 586 B.C., a Shemitah year, when the Temple fell and Judah went into captivity in Babylon for 70 years.
It’s no mystery that “The Mystery of the Shemitah” releases just before the next Shemitah cycle begins Sept. 25, 2014 – ending Sept. 13, 2015.
Cahn explains Shemitah can have several meanings. It can mean a “release” – and in ancient Israel debts were canceled and land returned to its original owners. But it can also mean “to fall, to collapse, to shake,” he says.
But the Shemitah seems to be affecting the U.S. economy throughout much of the nation’s history.
The eight greatest postwar economic crashes are all mysteriously connected to a biblical Sabbath year pattern known in Hebrew as “the Shemitah,” reveals the book – evidence certain to rock the world of financial speculators, stock market traders and economists.
Among the stunning findings of the author who found jaw-dropping links between the 9/11 terrorist attack and an otherwise obscure biblical passage, Isaiah 9:10, is that 100 percent of the worst U.S. economic calamities since World War II are all lined to the “Shemitah,” the biblical Sabbath year, its wake or the biblical month of Tishri in which the “Shemitah” falls.
But more than that – all of the great economic crashes in U.S. history, including the Great Depression, line up with Shemitah years.
“It has been affecting everything in our lives,” says Cahn. “There’s no end to it. It’s amazing. It’s precise. It’s down to the days, the hours, the minutes, even the seconds.”
“I have to tell you, economically speaking, this new book by Jonathan Cahn is one of the scariest things I have ever read,” said Joseph Farah, producer of “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment,” the bestselling documentary film made with the author about the subject matter of “The Harbinger.” “If ‘The Harbinger’ got your attention, ‘The Mystery of the Shemitah’ will have you on your face praying.”
In 1931, a solar eclipse took place on Sept. 12 – the end of a “Shemitah” year. Eight days later, England abandoned the gold standard, setting off market crashes and bank failures around the world. It also ushered in the greatest monthlong stock market percentage crash in Wall Street history.
In 1987, a solar eclipse took place Sept. 23 – again the end of a “Shemitah” year. Less than 30 days later came “Black Monday,” the greatest percentage crash in Wall Street history.
Is Cahn predicting doom and gloom on Sept. 13, 2015? He’s careful to avoid a prediction, saying, “In the past, this ushered in the worst collapses in Wall Street history. What will it bring this time? Again, as before, the phenomenon does not have to manifest at the next convergence. But, at the same time, and again, it is wise to take note.”
To top it off, “Shemitah” years are also grouped in sevens – with the 50th year being a year of jubilee – or trumpet blast.
“The jubilee was something a super Shemitah,” writes Cahn. “It was the Shemitah taken to a new level. In the year of the Shemitah the land rested – so too in the Year of Jubilee. In the year of the Shemitah came release. But in the Year of Jubilee the release took on new meaning. It was not simply the letting go of land or debt. In the jubilee, slaves and prisoners were set free. It was thus the year of liberty.”
While no one is certain when the year of jubilee is, Cahn presents evidence that the next one may coincide with the end of the next Shemitah year – again Sept. 13 on the Gregorian calendar.
Cahn also looks at the five greatest financial turning points of the past 40 years and finds they are connected to the Shemitah cycle.
As he puts it, ‘From the 40-year period beginning in 1973, every single one of the five greatest financial and economic peaks and collapses have converged, clustered and taken place according to the set time of the Shemitah.”
“Something very much more than natural is indeed going on,” concludes the understated Cahn. “And the signs of the phenomenon all point to the same ancient biblical mystery. If the collapse of the world’s stock markets were an act of crime, the Shemitah would have long ago been indicted for the evidence left at the crime scene. In its numbers, its connections, its convergences, its percentages, its magnitude and its consistency, the amount of fingerprints covering the financial cataclysms of modern times is overwhelming.”
Likewise, “The Mystery of the Shemitah” is somewhat overwhelming too. The economic coincidences are only part of the story. The book also explores the rise and fall of kingdoms and their connections with the Shemitah cycles – its connections with World War I, World War II and the Cold War.
But Cahn is careful not to predict what will happen in the coming Shemitah year.
“The phenomenon may manifest in one cycle and not in another and then again in the next,” he writes. “And the focus of the message is not date-setting but the call of God to repentance and return. At the same time, something of significance could take place, and it is wise to note the times.”
Cahn also notes the fact that 2014 and 2015 are marked by a series of blood moons – a pattern that began on Passover 2014 and will conclude on the Feast of Tabernacles in 2015, as discovered by Pastor Mark Biltz, author of “Blood Moons” and the inspiration for a documentary of the same name.