This Day in History: November 1, 1755 Lisbon Earthquake on All Saints’ Day

 “On November 1, 1755, a cataclysm took place. Early that morning, a few tremors began to cause alarm. When, as recounted over at Scientific American, all of the bells of the city began to ring aloud, buildings began to collapse. Over the course of around 10 minutes, three colossal vibrations struck the city. As it was All Saints' Day, a Christian festival celebrating the entire pantheon of saints, many of the city’s inhabitants were in somewhat fragile churches, attending one of several masses that day. Fires burned for almost a week after the event, and the city was nothing more than a pale shadow of its former self. Around 30,000 to 60,000 people perished in Lisbon alone, and tens of thousands of buildings were reduced to rubble…About two-thirds of the city was rendered uninhabitable.”1

Let’s look at All Saints’ Day. Celebrated annually on November 1 all over the world, All Saints’ Day is a “Holy Day” established by the Roman Catholic Church to commemorate all Christian saints (declared so by the Roman Catholic Church), specifically those who do not have a special feast day dedicated to them.  These “saints” have died and are supposedly now in heaven.  All Saints’ Day is not to be confused with “All Souls’ Day,” another Roman Catholic “holy day,” commemorated on November 2, dedicated to those who have died, but have not yet reached heaven according to Roman Catholic teaching.  However, Roman Catholics are not the only people who celebrate All Saints’ Day, some Anglicans and even Protestants honor this day; and individuals who  may not have any religious affiliation have come to recognize it as the day of the dead (Dia de Los Muertos) in which loved ones who have died are recognized and honored. On this day, the gravesites of departed friends and family members are visited; altars are built for them containing the deceased persons’ favorite foods and beverages along with photographs and other commemorative items.  The celebration of these holidays commence on October 31 known as “All Hallows' Eve” or Halloween, a day in which children invite the spirits of dead children to come back by making an altar for them, then November 1, All Saints’ Day, followed by All Souls’ Day.  


There is nothing holy or sacred about these days, but they are abominable and are in verity days dedicated to witchcraft, sorcery, spirit mediums, and devil-worship, albeit wrapped in various guises, and are in no way harmless. The recognition and celebration of these holidays is nothing more than spiritualism that invites demonic possession with our without the permission of the participant. Careful research shows that the choice of the date for which All Saints’ Day is commemorated is the very date of the Pagan "Feast of the Lamures," a day which pagans use to appease or placate the so-called restless spirits of the dead by giving them food, treats and other things they enjoyed while they were alive. This is a clear indication that, much like all the other Catholic “holy” days or holidays, All Saints’ Day is nothing more than baptized paganism and is deeply entrenched in pagan ritualism and symbolism.


  For this reason, it is inconceivable that Christians can so unconscionably celebrate any of these holidays.  Equally unbelievable is their willingness to participate in something that is so anti-scriptural.  The Bible leaves no ambiguity as to the state of the dead and is absolutely clear that when a person dies, his/her spirit does not live on; he/she does not go to heaven but returns to dust and is in the grave awaiting either the first or the second resurrection.  Please carefully read the following confirming scriptures:  Job 12:14, and 21; Psalm 115:17; Psalm 146:4; Ecclesiastes 9:5,6 and 10; Ecclesiastes 12:7; Ezekiel 18:20; John 5:28 and 29; and Acts 2:29 and 34.  Just as clear as the Bible is concerning the state of the dead, is the clarity given concerning his people not mingling in spiritualism in any form that it may present itself in.  Please read the following verses and heed the warnings therein: Exodus 22:18; Leviticus 19:31; Leviticus 20:27; Deuteronomy 19:9-12; 1 Samuel 15:23; Isaiah 8:19; Revelation 21:8 and Revelation 22:15.  There are many other scriptures that could be used, but it is not a multiplicity of scriptures that the reader needs but rather a willingness to obey even one. More information can be found in Vance Ferrell’s The Real Story Behind Christmas, Easter and Halloween.2


God in His providence allowed a prophetic event to take place November 1, the day that people’s attention was absorbed in All Saints’ Day, of the year 1755 to not only draw men’s attention to end-time bible prophecy but to also show them the fallacy of celebrating All Saints’ day or any other Day “hallowed” by man and not God. This universal event was so remarkable and widely felt that individuals could not ignore it and sought an explanation for its occurrence.  Many would discover that the explanation is found in Revelation 6:12— the first sign of the sixth seal that precedes the Second Advent of Christ. There are only seven seals in scripture; and under the seventh seal, the Second Coming of Jesus takes place. 

Not only does the Bible foretell the manner and object of Christ’s return, but it also presents tokens so that men can know when it is near.  The events under the sixth seal are described thus: “And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood;  And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind.  And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places. And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?” Revelation 6:12-17. 


The first three events of the sixth seal have already been fulfilled in their order; and the only scenes yet to transpire are those involving the Second Coming of Christ. As mentioned before, the great earthquake occurred Nov. 1, 1755, with the epicenter in Lisbon Portugal, a day wherein inhabitants were celebrating All Saints Day. In the Encyclopedia Britannica, it was recorded: “Lisbon earthquake of 1755, series of earthquakes that occurred on the morning of Nov. 1, 1755, causing serious damage to the port city of Lisbon, Port., and killing an estimated 60,000 people in Lisbon alone. Violent shaking demolished large public buildings and about 12,000 dwellings. Because November 1 is All Saints’ Day, a large part of the population was attending mass at the moment the earthquake struck; the churches, unable to withstand the seismic shock, collapsed, killing or injuring thousands of worshippers…The earthquake generated a tsunami that produced waves about 20 feet (6 metres) high at Lisbon and 65 feet (20 metres) high at Cádiz, Spain. The waves traveled westward to Martinique in the Caribbean Sea, a distance of 3,790 miles (6,100 km), in 10 hours and there reached a height of 13 feet (4 metres) above mean sea level. Damage was even reported in Algiers, 685 miles (1,100 km) to the east. The total number of persons killed included those who perished by drowning and in fires that burned throughout Lisbon for about six days following the shock.”3

We are certain that this earthquake, the most terrible earthquake ever recorded, fulfills the prophecy of Revelation 6:12 because of its unparalleled magnitude and the other foretold events that followed. “The revelator thus describes the first of the signs to precede the Second Advent: ‘There was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood…’ These signs were witnessed before the opening of the nineteenth century. In fulfillment of this prophecy there occurred, in the year 1755, the most terrible earthquake that has ever been recorded. Though commonly known as the earthquake of Lisbon, it extended to the greater part of Europe, Africa, and America. It was felt in Greenland, in the West Indies, in the island of Madeira, in Norway and Sweden, Great Britain and Ireland. It pervaded an extent of not less than four million square miles. In Africa the shock was almost as severe as in Europe. A great part of Algiers was destroyed; and a short distance from Morocco, a village containing eight or ten thousand inhabitants was swallowed up. A vast wave swept over the coast of Spain and Africa engulfing cities and causing great destruction.”4 For more information regarding the great Lisbon Earthquake and the rest of the events under the sixth seal, please read the chapter “Heralds of the Morning” in the book, The Great Controversy written by Ellen White.5


If individuals have accepted the Roman Catholic Church’s assumed authority to declare certain days as holy or “holidays,” such as “All Saints’ Day,” it will not be a hard thing for them to accept Sunday as a weekly holiday all the while dishonoring God’s Sabbath, especially when it is enforced by government and incurs penalties. Such persons will receive the Mark of the Beast, receive the wrath of God and thus be unable to stand at Christ’s Coming.  While on the other hand, those who would be sealed and able to stand, who would not receive the mark of the beast and his image when the decree goes forth, must have decision now to say, “Nay, we will not regard the institution of the beast, but will follow the commandments of God, be the price what it may.”  


  1. https://www.forbes.com/sites/robinandrews/2018/02/28/the-all-saints-day-earthquake-that-changed-the-world/#1d0821f6781f

  2. http://www.present-truth.org/6-Library/Christmas-Easter.pdf

  3. https://www.britannica.com/event/Lisbon-earthquake-of-175

  4. White, Ellen. The Great Controversy (1911), page 304

  5. https://storage.prophesyagain.org/wp-content/uploads/EGW/GC.pdf














































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