8/6/17 - Pastor Young
With the recent glut of superhero movies, there is a question that arises naturally: what is our obsession with super-powered beings?
There are a number of arguments about why most of the world enjoys superheroes. Without getting into all of the theories, I'd like to share with you an observation I had recently: almost all of the superheroes act in ways that result in the good of those around them, regardless of how they are treated in return. Some of them are thanked, but a vast majority of them are feared and hated. They are unfairly blamed and cursed. There seems to be no reason for these heroes to help the ungrateful masses.
Fanciful fiction aside, there is a direct comparison we can make with the message we heard on Sunday. Pastor Steve spoke from Luke 9:18-50, and we bore witness to a familiar picture -- Jesus, an extraordinary God, and His disciples, who were very ordinary men. The regular and abject failure of the men is highlighted throughout the Gospels. In the passage from Sunday, Peter's confession of Jesus as the Messiah is contrasted by his incoherent babbling when he sees Jesus alongside Moses and Elijah. While Jesus talks of laying down His life, the disciples bicker and argue about who among them is the greatest. What is there to love about these bumbling sidekicks?
I'm struck by the way that heroes can look at ordinary men, and have pity and compassion. But what's more striking to me is that this holy God can look upon me, with my own incoherent babbling and argumentative pride, and love me. His love is far beyond the duty, the pity, or the vengeance that the superheroes in cinema display -- they're all as flawed as the mere men who created them. But our uncreated God, perfect in every way, looks upon our humble estates and loves us, despite fully knowing what's in our hearts.
We are about to swing into the second half of our series on The Gospel of Jesus According to Luke. Some familiar themes will continue: the people are lost, but they can be found in Jesus Christ. And in fact, the disciples themselves are lost, and yet found in Him. Jesus will soon send out these disciples, who we have seen fail time and time again, trusting them with His all-important work.
We are ordinary people living before the eyes of an extraordinary God. And in that, we have much to praise.
Looking forward and living before with you,