Why do people love episodes about Superman, the Hulk, Hercules, and other superheroes?
I can’t speak for others, but as for me, I get to experience the thrill of victory in face of terrible odds against the worst of enemies, who have equal, if not greater, power. When the story is over, I must come back to reality and face the threats that could actually kill me. Because I know how weak I am, I’m looking for protection and a guaranteed victory. I am no superhero.
The apostle Paul says righteousness, truth, and faith are my protective armor. Knowledge of God and assurance of my relationship with him guard my mind from a fatal blow. My marching boots should take me where God wants me to go. My method of attack is to wield the sword of God’s truth. Doesn’t that sound wonderful? If only I knew how to do all that, which explains why I find myself praying all the time.
When Paul says I should “pray without ceasing,” he isn’t telling me to keep banging on God’s door until I get what I want. He’s telling me to continually listen for his voice, always seeking his direction. Could that make me a superhero like Moses or Elijah? Probably not.
A famous plaque says, PRAYER CHANGES THINGS. The mistake I make is thinking I control the one who does the changing. To stand against the forces of evil, Superman’s cape or Thor’s hammer won’t work. Fantasies aren’t effective against enemies who are real.
Paul said nothing could separate him from God’s love (Romans 8:38–39), which included beatings, shipwreck, and imprisonment—and ultimately, death. Am I interested in a superhero’s life like that? Maybe so. If the reward justifies the cost.
Our struggle is not with people but with the forces that influence our desires. We are pressured by spiritual wickedness in high places of authority—social prejudices, government leaders who tell people what they want to hear, and the media that filters, distorts, and spins the “truth” to suit their agendas. That’s why you need every piece of God’s armor to stand strong in the battle and protect yourself from the evil. — Ephesians 6:12–13, The Discussion Bible
One of my favorite superheroes is the blind man Jesus told to go wash in the Pool of Siloam and left with the ability to see. What happened to him? To read his story, go to FrankBall.org and click on the Born Blind book.