ORDINARY PEOPLE DOING EXTRAORDINARY THINGS (SUPERHEROES OF THE BIBLE)
MOST kids today love to imitate superheroes or at least watch their cartoons. Have you ever asked Why such an interest? What is the big attraction?
WHEN kids are interested in their superheroes, they are not rooting for the powers or the costume—they’re rooting for the person inside the tights. With they’re rooting for the kid from Queens, who, when he’s not saving the world, has to scrape by to make rent. With Captain they’re rooting for the 98-pound weakling who, through the miracle of science, was granted muscles that finally match the size of his heart.
Superheroes are “Models For People who rise above their personal baggage and insecurities to face great challenges and do great things.
FOR a moment, let’s set aside the present day superheroes of comics and movies, like Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and Spiderman, and etc., and let’s look at some superheroes from the Bible.
The Bible holds the foundation of all superheroes. We often don’t see the relationship here… . but Bible characters fit right in!!
The Bible is full of stories of ordinary people who became heroes by trusting and having faith and following God.
The focus of this lesson is how we can follow the example of these ordinary people who did extraordinary things and what their stories can teach us about our relationship with God.
These are ordinary people from different walks of life: old, young, male, female. There’s the small boy (David), who killed a mighty giant and went on to rule a nation. The young woman, (Esther), who saved a nation by risking her own neck, and the young man (Gideon), who defeated a whole army with just a few men. 135,000 Midianites and 32,000 Gideons. In we see that Midian had 135,000 men; a 4 to 1 ratio. If God allowed Israel to defeat the Midians with only a quarter of the number of Midians men, then Israel would not think they defeated the Midianites on their own, but that God would get the credit. And yet all these superheroes of the Bible shared a common bond in their relationship with God, that transforms them from ordinary people to Heroes of Faith is a common denominator here.
I have chosen men and women, boys and girls, the famous and not-so-famous, to use as examples of how God uses people with a willing heart to change the course of history.
The inspiration for superheroes of the Bible comes from Hebrew, Chapter 11, sometimes referred to as the “Hall of Fame Chapter”. It lists superhero after superhero: Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Sarah, Joseph, and Moses.
And then we have other superheroes such as who not only had to defeat a hugh scary army, with his men, but to do so, he had to drop a wall with about as many bricks in it as the Empire State Bldg.
And, of course, there was Mary, mother of Jesus. She was a fairly ordinary woman called to perform extraordinary service to our planet and our universe.
Besides the ones mentioned above, some of my favorite ones are:
(1) Moses (A.K.A. Captain Planet)
He was so shy and awkward that he couldn’t see himself saying more than “Duhh” in front of the Pharoah. But with Earth, Fire, Wind, and a big heart, Moses used all of these as he led the Isralites out of captivity. Moses’s superpowers, like Captain Planet, allowed him to control nature. It started with the plagues of blood, frogs, locusts, and hail mixed with fire. He controlled the wind and water.
(2) Samson (A.K.A. Superman)
Samson is the strong superhero of the Bible, just as superman is the number one superhero today. He killed a lion with his bare hands, and killed 1000 men with a jawbone. Samson’s kryptonite, though, was his hair, as we all well know.
(3) David (A.K.A. Batman)
Just like Batman, David didn’t really have any supernatural ability. He was, however, quite resourceful and good at winning fights that he seemingly had no chance to win. An example is when he killed the 9-foot giant known as Goliath with his “Utility Belt” (or sling). He was only a 98-pound weakling at this time.
(4) is the ultimate superhero of the Bible; the superhero of all superheroes. Jesus is my all-time favorite. He came to save us and help us become the heroes of faith that God calls us to be. He died on the cross for all our sins and provided a way to eternal salvation.
Each of their stories can give us an insight into how God can use us, and inspire us to become the Heroes of Faith that God calls us to be. Each of these Biblical men were granted incredible powers from on-high, so that good could triumph over evil. This is superhero story-telling in the most classic sense.
Hopefully, today, we can improve our faith in God, who is, the author of every superpower that showed up in our Bible lesson. And we will see how good defeats evil over and over and how; therefore, in our own lives, God can bring all things to a great conclusion.
And yes, the Bible also has stories of villains. I like to say villains are just heroes turned upside down; people who failed to trust and follow God. One of the first villains was the serpent, from Then we had Cain, the jealous brother Jezebel, the painted lady Delilah, the disloyal deceiver Herod, the liar 3). And then Judas, the Betrayer (Luke 22:16),
The Holy Spirit gives all believers power to trust and follow God and the ability to fight against powers of darkness
God made each of us in His image and out of a response of Love for us, gave us free will. So we have the choice to become a hero or a villain, to pursue our virtues or our flaws.
In reviewing last week, we saw a couple of superheroes of the comics and movies of today. Then, progressing on, we started getting into superheroes from the Bible.
We said the Bible was the foundation of all superheroes. The Bible is full of stories of ordinary people who became heroes by trusting, having faith, and following God.
Before, we spent some time looking at the book of Judges, Chapters 6 and 7, about the story of Gideon.
Now, we are going to take a look at the book of Hebrew.
If you remember, back a couple Sunday’s ago, we had a lesson on faith. Hebrews chapter 11 begins with a good definition of a faith: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen”. The theme throughout the whole chapter is “Faith”.
Here, we see faith is the common denominator. All these people shared a common bond in their relationship with God.
Looking briefly at a few more superheroes from the Bible, we have:
I. A hero that walked with God.
Why can we consider Noah a hero? He was a hero that trusted God and walked by faith to save his family and the pairs of animals that God said to take into the Ark. Noah was used by God to preserve the human race and the animal kingdom. Noah was 600 years old when he began building the Ark. (Genesis 7:6). Noah believed God when He said that it was going to rain, even though there had never been rain from the sky up until that time (Genesis 2:5).
II. A hero that had a covenant with God. Abraham’s original name was “Abram”. Abram was 75 when he did as the Lord commanded him to do; that was to take his wife and family and leave his father. God was pleased with Abram’s obedience and in God makes a promise to Abram, “And the Lord appeared unto Abram, and said, unto thy seed will I give this land… .”
III. Jacob: A hero and chosen people. Jacob was the son of Isaac, and he had 12 sons who even finally became the first tribes of Israel. Jacob didn’t always walk with God and in fact it wasn’t until after he physically wrestled with God, losing the match and gaining a permanent limp from his dislocated hip. This is when Jacob finally turned to God. This is also when God renamed him Israel. Israel is the chosen people of God and the descendents of Jacob. so Jacob is the father of the Chosen People.
IV. Joseph of A hero and a daddy.
People who generally don’t read the Bible know of the carpenter who espoused to Mary when she became pregnant with Jesus. He was not a man of any real notoriety. He was not a rich man. He was simply a man who had promised to take Mary as his wife. God chose Mary as the vessel that would deliver Jesus the Christ and He even chose Joseph to be Jesus’s earthly father.
Be encouraged to accept great challenges as we notice how God has used ordinary people to do extraordinary things.