I would encourage you to read Luke 21:5-36 carefully. For further understanding, we will also reference Matt. 24 and Mark 13. We must remember that Jesus is answering two different questions in these accounts. In Mt. 24:3, The disciples ask Him: 1. When will the Temple be destroyed? 2. What are the signs of Your coming and the end of the age? Jesus answers both questions; so some of the things He says refers to the 70 A.D. destruction of Jerusalem, and some of them refer to the end times. This is not uncommon in the Bible, since we see Peter quote Joel on the day of Pentecost, and he clearly refers to part of Joel’s prophecy as being fulfilled right then (Act 2:16-18), and the other part on the great Day of The Lord (vs. 19-20, yet future). Jesus also does this in Lk 4:16-21, when he quotes Isaiah 61:1-2. He intentionally leaves out the part that says, "The day of vengeance of our God", because that was a future event - separate from the rest of the passage. So let’s look at what things will precede the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
In Lk 21:9-11, Jesus says there will be wars, commotions, and rumors of wars; Ethnicity will rise against ethnicity, and kingdom against kingdom; earthquakes, famines, plagues; fearful sights and great signs in the heavens. These are the birth pains, or contractions, that lead up to the return of the Son of God. Contractions get more intense and closer together as the delivery draws closer. So are the signs of the times. Jesus said when you begin to see these things, to look up - for your redemption (deliverance) draws near. Notice, when you begin, or start, to see these things, you better be looking up - it’s getting close.
Are we in the last days? Well, yes and maybe. Yes, the entire church age is considered the last days, so we’ve been in them for almost 2,000 years. We might be, and I believe likely are, in the end times, or "last" of the last days; because the signs of the times are greatly increasing. One such example is earthquakes. They have greatly increased in strength and frequency in the last ten years. From 1800 to 1900, there were approx. 31 earthquakes 7.0 or higher. From 1901 to 2000, there were 222 quakes 7.0 or higher. In the last 10 years alone, there have been 160+ major quakes 7.0 or greater. Coincidence or contractions?
It is true that famines, earthquakes, plagues, wars, rumors of wars, etc., have been around for thousands of years. However, it is the increase and intensity that gives us clues to the times we are in. The Bible says no man knows the day or the hour of the return of Christ, but that we would know the signs of the times. Some other signs are: 1. The Gospel would be preached in all the world (Mt 24:14). 2. Increased wickedness (Mt 24:12, 2Tim 3:1-5) 3. Mockery of the return of Christ (2Pt 3:3-4, Jud 18-19) 4. Return of Israel to the promised Land (happened in 1948, Ezk 20:34, Isa 43:5-6) 5. Increased turmoil in the Middle East (Ezk 38:1-6) 6. Global government, economy, and universal religion (Rev 13 and 17). It’s quite obvious that these things have already happened, or are presently happening. Coincidence or contractions?
Alright, so let’s say we are in the last of the last days: What are we supposed to do? First off, we are not to be terrified (Lk 21:9, Isa 41:10, 2Tim 1:7). If you are right with Jesus, your heart should not fail for fear (Lk 21:26, Jn 14:1). We should be wise as serpents, yet gentle as doves. We should be sober. We should be keeping watch. We should be praying without ceasing. We should be about our Father’s business. We should forsake our sinfulness and turn to Christ and serve Him. (Mt 24:42-51, Mk 13:32-37, Lk 21:34-36). As disciples of Jesus Christ, we should be looking up (Lk 21:28, Titus 2:13, Heb 9:28)! The return of our Lord is eminent! These words should bring comfort (1Thess 4:18)! Hope! Joy! Peace! To be absent from the body is to be present with The Lord! Come Lord quickly! (Rev 22:20) Are you ready?