I have just finished reading a book titled, Norse Mythology, by Neil Gaiman. This book garnered my attention because of a History Channel program I enjoy watching called, Vikings, and my desire to discover more about the Norse gods these historical people worshipped and detested. The Norse gods include the likes of; Odin, Thor and Loki, and are made famous in Marvel comics and recent movies. Yet after reading of their tales and adventure of woe I am concluding that the accounts of Norse Mythology is nothing more than grand tales invented to explain the natural wonders of the world and to justify a larger cultural way of life. Many of the stories would make for great stories of adventure told around an open hearth in an age when writing had yet to be invented and entertainment was a seldom luxury.
Such a book on Norse Mythology should be read for the sheer entertainment of very creative stories of adventure, mischief and conquest.
That being said, as a pastor and theological nerd I now find my self comparing Norse Mythology to that of the stories found in the Old Testament, a time of roughly the same period. Tales of; the Garden of Eden, a great flood, the passover, the parting of the Red Sea, Jonah and the whale, and even a virgin birth for the Son of God, a miracle filled life and a bodily resurrection could all cast dispersions to the same fantasy as Norse Mythology. So what then is the difference between the truth found in our Christian faith and that of ancient mythology? Well the simple answer could be faith, yet that too would work for mythology.
In actuality what Christians have is a recorded account by witnesses to the saving grace of God. Christianity has a God given and inspired record of God as Creator, Savior and Sustainer. We as people of faith have the Holy Scripture, the Bible. The Bible attests to and about the one God we worship, and from whom we receive all grace, mercy and love.
So if you wish to indulge in the fantasy of the mind, Norse Mythology could make for fine entertainment. If you wish to seek and understand the of truth of God and the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I would suggest finding your way into the pages of the Bible. If you don’t have a Bible or have lost yours, I will be happy to give you a copy.