I've heard my whole life that one of the major signs to look for concerning the end of the world is that no one will be able to tell what season it is.

Most of my fundamentalist friends and family (especially my Southern Baptist Grandmother) assume that this "end-times prophecy" is biblical, and that it should be thrown right in there with all the other "signs of the times."

I have made it all the way through the New Testament several times now and haven't noticed anything about strange seasons.

The closest thing I have noticed is in Matthew chapters 24 and 25, where Jesus is describing what will happen right before he returns.

As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?”

Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains. Matt. 24:3-8

How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath. Matt. 24:19

“Immediately after the distress of those days

“‘the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from the sky, and the heavenly bodies will be shaken.’ “Then will appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven. And then all the peoples of the earth will mourn when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory. Matt. 24:29-30

This question is prompted by a conversation I had the other day with some of my pastor friends. We are experiencing an unusually mild summer here in North Georgia, and during our conversation it was brought up that "in the end times you won't be able to tell what season it is." I responded, "Ya know, I've heard that saying my whole life. Where is that in the Bible?"

No one had an answer.

Is anyone else familiar with this idea? Am I missing something? Where is this in the Bible?

If it is not, then where did this "end-times prophecy" originate?


8 Answers 8


The only passages that come to mind regarding weather patterns in the end times have to do with clouds:

Joel 2:2 A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains: a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations.

Zep 1:14 The great day of the LORD is near, it is near, and hasteth greatly, even the voice of the day of the LORD: the mighty man shall cry there bitterly. Zep 1:15 That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness,

Is it the quantity of clouds? Will they be blacker than normal? We can expect unusual weather patterns when much of the earth's greenery is burnt ("The first angel sounded, and there followed hail and fire mingled with blood, and they were cast upon the earth: and the third part of trees was burnt up, and all green grass was burnt up" -- Rev. 8:7), the air is scorched, and smoke is everywhere. From what I've seen in my life on earth, dense smoke turns the sun red:

Joel 2:30 And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. Joel 2:31 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come.

The abundance of burning vegetation will surely cause crazy weather patterns.

  • I see the connection you are making with these prophetic verses, but it still seems a little vague and unconvincing as to these verses being the inspiration of many folks specifically believing that it will be snowing in the summertime and scorching in winter. It seems to me that Christ would have said directly sonething like, "Take a lesson from the seasons, when no one can tell...." He is very direct with other natural disasters such as earthquakes. Also,I think that if when the Earth is scorched with fire not many people will be trying to predict the weather.
    – user5286
    Commented Aug 26, 2013 at 17:08
  • 1
    Then the "many folks" are adding detail to Scripture that is unwarranted. The OP says nothing about people trying to predict the weather in the last days.
    – Steve
    Commented Aug 26, 2013 at 18:07
  • I agree...I'm starting to think this an extra biblical assumption. I was hoping to find out what started it. What is the OP?
    – user5286
    Commented Aug 26, 2013 at 18:42
  • OP is "opening post." The question that started this page.
    – Steve
    Commented Aug 27, 2013 at 2:40
  • I wasn't literally referring to meteorology. What I meant was that when the first Angel sounds and "hail and fire mingled with blood is cast upon the earth" "folks" might be preoccupied with Earth's greenery being burnt up rather than strange weather. By that point strange weather patterns will perhaps be somewhat irrelevant. However, like your post says above, hell fire and brimstone does technically qualify as "weather." Sorry for the confusion...
    – user5286
    Commented Aug 27, 2013 at 2:58

There is no such verse. In Genesis, God promised the exact opposite:

“As long as the earth endures,
seedtime and harvest,
cold and heat,
summer and winter,
day and night
will never cease.” Genesis 8:22

I'm sure though, there might be a group out there that interprets one verse or another to mean that there will be this kind of trouble in the end. The Seventh Day Adventists might be one. See Magnitude of the earthquakes of the Book of Revelation.

The SDA consider New England's Dark Day and some of the Leonid Meteor Showers to be signs of fulfillment for Revelation 6:12-13

Revelation 6 (NIV)
12  I watched as he opened the sixth seal. There was a great earthquake. The sun turned black like sackcloth made of goat hair, the whole moon turned blood red, 13  and the stars in the sky fell to earth, as figs drop from a fig tree when shaken by a strong wind.

Ancient cultures generally considered anything that involves the sky, Sun, or Moon to be "weather" (consider Aristotle's Meteorologica including Earth, Fire, and Water with Air). But these were short lived events; they didn't even last a full season, so they certainly cannot lend credence to the notion that you will not be able to tell the seasons at the time of the end.

There really are no verses that say you will not be able to tell the seasons at the time of the end, but there is the verse in Genesis saying the exact opposite, so my money is on "No, the seasons will persist until the time of the end."

  • Today I spoke with one of my Baptist friends who was involved in the initial conversation. He also has been trying to uncover the source to this bizarre belief. Both of us are convinced that this is absolutely extra-biblical. I have been trying to find the original extra-biblical source. I found several sites that cite the "3 Days of Darkness" prophecy where Padre Pio "supposedly" said, “You will know when that time is approaching because the seasons will change so the only way you will know the seasons is by the leaves on the trees.” (1) cont.
    – user5286
    Commented Aug 28, 2013 at 1:48
  • But when I try to pin down Padre's official statement of the above phrase nothing shows up. The closest thing to it is that he says right before the 3 days there will be a "bitter cold night" and then much later says the morning after the 3 day of darkness "it will be like springtime!" And its highly debated whether or not Padre Pio actually wrote anything about the 3 days of darkness.(2) I think I'm gonna have to say that this myth is busted. Such a strange tradition! 1. gotquestions.org/end-times-seasons.html#ixzz2dDxfHocv 2. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Days_of_Darkness
    – user5286
    Commented Aug 28, 2013 at 1:59
  • 2
    @Charles Thanks for the selection. It could have its origins outside of Christianity. There are many Pagan myths that were syncretically merged with Christianity as it spread throughout the world. It could be from anywhere if that is the case; Europe, Africa, N. or South America; anywhere. Perhaps searching for brief overviews of non-Christian end times myths will lead to something.
    – user3961
    Commented Aug 28, 2013 at 4:04

Isa 24:20 The earth shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall be removed like a cottage; and the transgression thereof shall be heavy upon it; and it shall fall, and not rise again.

Seasons are caused by the tilt of the earth. When the Northern hemisphere is experiencing winter the southern hemisphere is experiencing summer. The middle of the earth experiances some temperature changes as the earth moves closer and further away from the sun due to the elliptical orbit but it is not as distinctive as the poles.

The earth reeling as a drunkard will certainly change how we experiance seasons. However

Gen 8:22 While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.

We are promised that summer and winter are part of God's plan for the earth as long as there is an earth and will continue to happen as long as the Earth exists.

This link from open bible has many other verses on the topic of weather in the end of days.

  • 2
    If Sacred Scripture promises us that summer and winter will continue to happen as long as the Earth exists, then doesn't that mean that we will always logically be able to tell when it is summer and when it is winter?
    – user5286
    Commented Aug 26, 2013 at 2:58
  • Read to the end of the chapter... This passage doesn't occur quite when you think it does.
    – Andrew
    Commented Sep 17, 2023 at 7:55

Evidently, it comes from the “3 Days of Darkness” prophecy of Padre Pio, a Roman Catholic priest. The exact quote appears to be, “You will know when that time is approaching because the seasons will change so the only way you will know the seasons is by the leaves on the trees.”

This “not knowing the seasons except by the leaves” concept is not biblical. In fact, there are verses in the Bible which actually teach the opposite. Genesis 8:22 declares, "As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease." Matthew 24:32-33 exclaims, "Now learn this lesson from the fig tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. Even so, when you see all these things, you know that the end is near, right at the door." See also Jeremiah 33:20-25. With these Scriptures in view, the idea of the seasons being indistinguishable in the end times does not have any biblical foundation.

  • Hmm...very informative! Thank you :-D
    – user5286
    Commented Oct 27, 2014 at 16:28

There are two significantly divergent ways of construing "in the end times you won't be able to tell what season it is.":

The first way is the approach of the (currently marked as) accepted answer which interprets that statement to mean: "In the end times you won't be able to tell the difference between summer, autumn, winter or spring - the seasons themselves won't be distinguishable from each other".

This is not the only possible interpretation, nor do I think it the most likely original meaning of the phrase, which was most likely as an extension of the verse "no one knows the day or hour (of the timing of the Lord's return)" (cf. Matthew 24:36) through applying an implication of Matthew 24:19 quoted in the OP above particularly:

...Pray that your flight will not take place in winter...

i.e. the 'it' referred it to in the statement was (originally) referring to 'the day of the Lord' and the (particular) season of the year when the Lord will return is not yet fixed (it may be in summer, spring or autumn, but hopefully not winter if we've all been praying enough about it) except according to the Father's foreknowledge of our prayers - and He is keeping everyone else (including the pre-glorified Son) guessing.

  • The "first way of construing" the phrase indicated in your answer is the only way that Ive heard it construed my whole life. This is the approach that I have heard yet havent found it in Scripture. The other originating interpretation that you allude too is absolutely absent from all conversations/assumptions that I have ever heard.
    – user5286
    Commented Jul 19, 2014 at 21:43
  • @CharlesAlsobrook I haven't made it explicit, but this is more of etymological approach - where the meaning has come from - what individual people (mis-)understand it to mean now may be quite different from the time of it's origin. I hope that's a little clearer post-edit. Commented Jul 19, 2014 at 23:02
  • "End Times" (wherein we look for signs) does not equate to "day of the LORD". This seems to be a common (erroneous) theme among all these answers... See my comment above about it.
    – Andrew
    Commented Sep 17, 2023 at 7:59

They are referring to the Day of the Lord from

Zech 14:6 On that day there will be neither sunlight nor cold, frosty darkness.. It will be a unique day--a day known only to the LORD--with no distinction between day and night. When evening comes, there will be light. On that day living water will flow out from Jerusalem, half of it east to the Dead Sea and half of it west to the Mediterranean Sea, in summer and in winter.

  • See my comment above about the "day" of the LORD (although whether you meant this as an actual answer or just as a reference point is ambiguous).
    – Andrew
    Commented Sep 17, 2023 at 7:56

I think it is possibly rooted in the corresponding rise of the final antichrist at that time. In researching his attributes, you find several curiosities that have been mostly forgotten by the modern Church. Referring to him in Daniel 7:25, Daniel indicates that he will seek to adjust time or time references in some way (along with prevailing laws).

  • This post doesn't really give any examples which relate to weather and as such I don't think it is an answer. This might be suitable for a comment. I realise you might not have the rating to do that - ask a decent question and get a couple of upvotes and using this site will become easier. Perhaps looking at this post will help you see how to give a good answer. Commented Dec 2, 2014 at 15:19

You may want to consider that season can be interpreted as feast of God...ie. you can determine what is to take place per the convocation of the Feasts of Jehovah. If people are under a strong delusion, which is an end time sign, they will not understand the Feasts... the information which Jehovah has appointed. You may also want to study the Menorah and how the lamps correspond to the feasts. These are perilous times, do not look to people for Godly answers. STUDY to show YOURSELF approved and be lead by the HOLY SPIRIT which teaches ALL things.


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