The Man of Steel
Jesus is The Man of Steel.
Since childhood I have always been a fan of comics and superheroes in particular. In 1978 when they were filming the Superman movie at North Narrabeen Beach, I remember hoping to catch a glimpse of Christopher Reeve in the spandex suit. Sadly, I think only Lex Luthor (Gene Hackman) was in that part.
With the newest adaptation comes a darker plot emphasising the ‘difference’ between Henry Cavill’s character and the people among whom he now lives. Superman is bullied as a kid because he is different, and for the same reason he is shunned by others who catch a glimpse of his abilities. But in the end he does ‘save’ the world, while convincing the authorities that he is on their side, and we can’t wait to see what he’s going to do to Batman next time.
As we know, comics and superheroes are not real. At best they’re an escape from the reality which we sometimes find threatening. But Jesus is real, he really lived, he is not just a myth or an invention of clever human beings.
Unlike Superman, who lives to fight another day (and another fictitious villain), Jesus died. But it is his death that saves us. God raised him from death to demonstrate that Jesus has defeated the enemy we could never defeat. It’s not General Zod who is our enemy, it is death itself. And since Jesus is alive, we too can live, for ever.
The Bible tells us, “Jesus himself carried our sins in his body to the cross, so that we might die to sin and live for righteousness. It is by his wounds that you have been healed”. (1 Peter 2:24, Good News Version)
I am looking forward to the further adventures of Superman, and I am sure I will enjoy them. But far more than that, I know that Jesus has defeated death for me, and it is his loving sacrifice that conquers all fear.
John Reid is minister at St John’s Mona Vale