By Nathan Jones
With all the 2012 end-time talk, the word "Mayan" comes up a lot. Just who were the Mayans?
Dr. David Reagan and I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Dr. Mark Hitchcock on the show Christ in Prophecy. Mark is a leading Bible prophecy expert, prolific author who has penned over 20 books on the end times, senior pastor of Faith Bible Church located in Oklahoma, and adjunct faculty member of the Dallas Theological Seminary. He is also a much in demand speaker at Bible prophecy conferences all over the nation.
Dr. Hitchcock was invited to answer questions based on a book he has just published about the widespread speculation and even hysteria that the world will come to an end on December 21, 2012. The book it titled 2012: The Bible and the End of the World.
Dr. Hitchcock: The ancient Mayans lived down in the area of modern Yucatan Peninsula. Folks would recognize it who have been to Cancun in Mexico. Their territory went on down into modern Guatemala.
The Mayans built incredible structures. Everything about their whole civilization was built in relation to the universe, pointing to something important in relation to the stars and their alignments. It is really incredible to read about them.
The Mayans were amazing mathematicians and astronomers. They were literally obsessed with time, I mean, they loved time! They had lots of calendars — 20 that they used. They had three main ones. They had this Long Count Calendar that measured periods of 5,125 years.
The Mayans saw all of time really in five ages with four of them according to their methodology having already passed. The last age started on August 11, 3114 B.C. and it is going to end on December 21, 2012. Now, some say these other four ages all ended in some great cataclysm, although there is a lot of speculation about that. The problem with that is most of this supposedly occurred before recorded history. And, so, we really don't know. Even the Mayan descendants that live down there today say that 2012 is not going to be the end of the world and that is not what they intended at all. Some say 2012 is going to be the end of the world on December 21st. Some say it is going to be a new beginning — a great global transformation of human consciousness — that is going to take place.
One thing fascinating to me about the Mayan's is that without computers or telescopes they knew that the Earth turns on its axis, wobbling one degree every 72 years. To complete one of these cycles — called the Precession of the Equinox — takes almost 26,000 years. That precession will be completed on December 21st of 2012.
Their civilization started before Christ around 1500 B.C., but they really became a greater people around 400 B.C. They reached their peak around 800 or 900 A.D.
Then, they just vanished and no one knows what happened. Nobody knows if it was disease, or over-farming, or famine. That just adds to the whole mystery of these people.
The Mayans knew an incredible amount about time and they knew an incredible amount about the universe. The inventions they had and the exactness of their calendars were simply amazing. I always tell people if it depended on me we wouldn't have the wheel yet. I just look at these people and the incredibly advanced civilization they had and am just amazed.