Ragnarök and the Last Days ∙
Unless the Lord shortens that time of calamity, not a single person will survive. But for the sake of his chosen ones he has shortened those days. – Mark 13:20
7 “Teacher when will all this happen? What sign will show us that these things are about to take place?”
8 He replied, “Don’t let anyone mislead you, for many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and saying, ‘The time has come!’ But don’t believe them.”
9 “And when you hear of wars and insurrections, don’t panic. Yes, these things must take place first, but the end won’t follow immediately.”
10 Then he added, “Nation will go to war against nation and kingdom against kingdom.”
11 “There will be great earthquakes, and there will be famines and plagues in many parts of the world, and there will be terrifying things and great miraculous signs from heaven.”
25 “And there will be strange signs in the sun, moon, and stars. And here on earth, the nations will be in turmoil, perplexed by the roaring seas and strange tides.”
26 “People will be terrified at what they see coming upon the earth, for the powers in the heavens will be shaken.”
Ragnarök is a Norwegian fantasy drama streaming television series reimagining Norse mythology developed for Netflix. It is a take on the seeming Existential Threat of climate change. It takes place in the current day, in the fictional Norwegian town of Edda in Hordaland, Western Norway. Edda is plagued by climate change, causing melting glaciers and industrial pollution from local factories.
According to Norse myth, Ragnarök is the end of the world of gods and men – Ragnarök means “Doom of the Gods” in Old Norse. It was said that Ragnarök would be preceded by cruel winters and moral chaos, after which giants and demons would come from everywhere to attack and kill the gods.
In the myth, Thor, the Norse god of thunder, appears to save the day. He is good and righteous and the protector of humanity. Using his enchanted hammer, Mjolnir, he defeats the World Serpent, ending Ragnarök. This, in turn, leads to the world’s rebirth and restoration and a new beginning for humankind. Only a god could save the planet.
Ragnarök is an end-times scenario not too far afield from what is going on, on planet Earth, sans the Norse gods and legendary creatures.
Throughout the Old and New Testaments, the Father has predicted an overall outline of the last day scenario through His prophets and apostles and the Lord Jesus Christ. He provided a great deal of detail in a few areas as well.
In the synoptic Gospels, Matthew, Mark, and Luke, His disciples asked three questions: When will these things be? What will be the sign of your coming? What will signal the close of the age? The Lord Jesus Christ speaks of the soon-coming destruction of Jerusalem and the distant events leading up to the Second Coming. His warnings are similar but more elaborate than those of Norse mythology. But more significantly, they are eerily consistent with current day events.
Of course, for centuries, students of the Scriptures have jumped to the conclusion that the prophecies of Matthew 24, Luke 21, and Mark 13 are coming true during their lifetimes. Clearly, they were mistaken.
REFLECT & PRAY
The day of the Lord will be a “thief-like,” unwelcome surprise for the world. People who live in the dark will suddenly be surprised by the light.
Father thank You that all children of the King are children of the light. Enable us to walk in the light as You are in the light and cleanse us from all sin (1 John 1:7).
How are children of the King to know when the last days have begun? The Lord Jesus Christ was crystal clear regarding this. On the one hand, no one on earth will know the day or the hour.
Matthew 24:36 However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.
But on the other hand, when we see these things happening, we know that the return of Lord Jesus Christ is near.
Matthew 24:33 When you see all these things recognize that He is near, right at the door.
Consequently, children of the King are to be on the alert and always waiting for the imminent return of the Lord Jesus Christ to the earth. How then should we live?
42 So you, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know what day your Lord is coming.
44 You also must be ready all the time, for the Son of Man will come when least expected.
Matthew 25:13 So you, too, must keep watch! For you do not know the day or hour of my return.
1 Thessalonians 5:2-8
2 For you know quite well that the day of the Lord’s return will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night.
3 When people are saying, “Everything is peaceful and secure,” then disaster will fall on them as suddenly as a pregnant woman’s labor pains begin. And there will be no escape.
4 But you aren’t in the dark about these things, dear brothers and sisters, and you won’t be surprised when the day of the Lord comes like a thief.
5 For you are all children of the light and of the day; we don’t belong to darkness and night.
6 So be on your guard, not asleep like the others. Stay alert and be clearheaded.
8 But let us who live in the light be clearheaded, protected by the armor of faith and love, and wearing as our helmet the confidence of our salvation.
1 Peter 4:7 The end of all things is near; therefore, be of sound judgment and sober spirit for the purpose of prayer.
“Like the other apostles, Peter believed the return of Jesus Christ was imminent (i.e., it could occur at any moment; cf. James 5:8; Romans 13:11; Hebrews 9:26; 1 John 2:18). This fact should have made a practical difference in the way his readers lived. Eschatology has ethical implications. They were to remain clear-headed (‘of sound judgment’), self-controlled (‘of sober spirit’) primarily so they could pray properly.”
“This statement illustrates the importance of prayer. Prayer is the most noble and necessary ministry that God entrusts to His children, but it is also the most neglected ministry (cf. Hebrews 4:15–16). Jesus’ praying in the Garden of Gethsemane may have impressed this truth on Peter (cf. Matthew 26:40–41). Jesus prayed when the end of His life was near” (Constable).
“. . . proper prayer is not an ‘opiate’ or escape, but rather a function of clear vision and a seeking of even clearer vision from God. It is only through clear communication with headquarters that a soldier can effectively stand guard” (Davids).
Luke 7:35 Wisdom is shown to be right by the lives of those who follow it.
1 Chronicles 12:32 From the tribe of Issachar, there were 200 leaders of the tribe with their relatives. All these men understood the signs of the times and knew the best course for Israel to take.
These unique individuals had discernment regarding what the children of the King should do in their own day. The Father gave people intellectual ability so they might discern His will and how they should act. Could it be that some children of the King are like the sons of Issachar? What about you?
© Dr. H 2022