Summary: Facing our fears and understanding the big picture of Jesus' end time prophecies.
The best fairy tales come from the worst fears…
Most of them were written in a time where poverty, famine and childhood abandonment were common.
All three of those are mixed into a story about kids getting lost in the woods and eventually meeting a cannibalistic witch in a children’s story you may have heard of the story named Hansel and Gretel.
Brothers Grimm also wrote…
Rapunzel dealt with fears associated with unwed pregnancy… You heard me correctly.
Remember the nice prince who rescues the princess by climbing in the tower? “Rapunzel Rapunzel let down your golden hair”. That’s not why he climbed in the tower in original tale.
“The witch knew nothing of these rendezvous until one day during her visit with Rapunzel she was asked very innocently “Why don’t my cloths fit me anymore?” it was then that the witch realized what Rapunzel had been doing so she cut off all of Rapunzel’s hair and sent her to a different tower in the dessert far from any civilization.
The prince not knowing the danger that was laid before him went to the tower to see his beloved but found the witch there waiting for him. After a struggle the prince fell out of the tower into a bed of thorns that gouged out his eyes so that he could no longer see. He wondered the forest for years blind.
In the meantime Rapunzel lived in the desert, her hair grew back and she gave birth to a set of twins. The prince eventually made his way out of the forest and into the desert. While there he heard Rapunzel singing and went towards the voice. When he found her she fell on him weeping tears of grief, these tears healed his eyes and allowed him to see again. He rescued his family and brought them back to his castle to live happily ever after.
We all love Disney’s version of “The Little Mermaid”. That’s a tamed down version of what kids in Hans Christian Anderson’s day got.
In that version, the mermaid gives up her fins to meet the prince of her dreams. There’s a few drawbacks though: not only is she mute, she also constantly feels like she is walking on knives. Yeah. In the end, the prince ends up marrying the neighboring princess anyway, breaking the poor mermaid’s heart. However, she is given a way out when she is given a magical knife that she is to kill the prince with, once that happens, she can become a mermaid again. Even after all that, she cannot bring herself to kill the prince, instead turning the knife on herself.
Childhood mortality is dealt with in …. Rock-a-bye baby…
Ring around the rosies…
This rhyme comes from England in the time of the Great Plague, in those days the Plague was so rife that people would carry around with them a ‘posy’ (which is a small bunch of flowers) that they held under their noses to help stop them catching the plague. A tishew, a tishew, (sneezing, ie caught the plague) we all fall down (as in we all fall down dead).
Which leads us to Tim Lahaye’s Left Behind series… the fear that we would be ready for God when he shows up with the big stick.
Today we are going to look at a very scary story that’s been made into good fiction over and over again because we are having a hard time handling the truth of it.
Luke 21:5 Some of his disciples were remarking about how the temple was adorned with beautiful stones and with gifts dedicated to God. But Jesus said,
It was more than twice the size of the Acropolis in Athens. Its perimeter was almost a mile long. One of the stones of the temple complex still remaining measures 45 x 11.5 x 12 feet and is estimated to weigh 570 tons.
6"As for what you see here, the time will come when not one stone will be left on another; every one of them will be thrown down."
The days will come refers not to the second coming but to a time in history before that. The literal destruction of the temple in 70 A.D.
7"Teacher," they asked, "when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are about to take place?"
Jesus can be pretty tricky in his responses to questions. He’s really good at getting to the heart of the matter before you even realize it. Their question is about predicting God. Jesus’ response is about God predicting them.
Let me unpack that…
What would you do if you knew when God would return? The same thing you do with library books, wait till the last minute. Or a better example is the amount you pay to those Red Box movie machines for just one movie because you waited so long to return it!