Capricorn – The Goat Fish

The constellation Capricorn as seen with the naked eye. One has to wonder how a "goat-fish" could have come from this rather nondescript pattern of stars. What has caused this legend to endure? Is there some biblical truth behind it?

The constellation Capricorn as seen with the naked eye. One has to wonder how a “goat-fish” could have come from this rather nondescript pattern of stars. What has caused this legend to endure? Is there some biblical truth behind it?

What do a fish and a goat have in common? Nothing at all you would think, but these two animals have been tied in together for thousands of years.

The Capricorn is one of the most well-known constellations in the Zodiac and it has a lot of history behind it.

The origins of the Capricorn differ from culture to culture. In Greek mythology, Bacchus, the god of the grape harvest, wine, and winemaking, was threatened by a sea monster while sitting at a river. In fear of his life, he dove into the water and transformed himself into a fish. While he was on land, he transformed himself into a horned goat to fight the monster. Zeus was very impressed with his efforts and granted him his own constellation.

In Babylonian mythology, the Capricorn was known was the “Antelope of the Sea.” The Babylonian god Ea was fishtailed and they believed him to have come up from the great depths of the ocean to teach all of humanity of the wisdom of the gods.

Even though the Greek Babylonian mythologies aren’t true, they do seem to contain many allusions to biblical truth nonetheless.

The Apostle Paul used a poem about Zeus to talk about God in Acts 17:22-31 to point to the true God, these stories can be used to point to our Lord and Savior. The tail of the fish in Capricorn, for example, has several biblical parallels. In early Christianity the “ichthus” (Greek for fish) was used as a representation of Christ. Jesus also called the Apostles to be fishers of men (Matt. 4:19), which is a fulfillment of Jeremiah 16:16a which says, “But now I will send for many fishermen,” declares the Lord, “and they will catch them.”

The Capricorn was known as a sign of sacrifice, or a scapegoat. In the Old Testament, the scapegoat bore the wrongdoing or sins of others. Jesus Christ died for our sins as a “scapegoat” because he had taken the sins of the world Himself and died in our place. 1 John 2:2, “He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.”

It is difficult to say with any certainty what connections may exist between this ancient constellation and Scripture and we aren’t claiming to know for sure. But it is an intriguing possibility to think that somewhere behind the legends of Capricorn told by the ancients is biblical truth.