Sunday, September 18, 2011

Jesus Superman and Batman

Can you represent the two natures of Jesus by using Batman and Superman. Should you try to explain this dualism of how two things that seem so opposing like divinity and humanity are together joined in Jesus Christ?

Jesus is the Son of God, you know virgin birth, immaculate conception, miracle worker, speaker of a subversive way of life that no one has ever truly lived up to. He's a Superman whose origin is not of this world, raised by earthly parents, to bring truth, justice and Kingdom Way. Personally I have always had a hard time realting to Superman. How can an alien who though he lived alongside us could never be like us, could never suffer like us. He might feel pain emotionally but he is unable to relate to us and our situation as he is not one of us no matter how much he looks like us. There is no relationship just condescension.

Jesus is also human, unlike Superman Jesus' mother is human. Mary conceives Jesus by the Holy Spirit and gives birth to him in Bethlehem. Jesus came into this world not by a spaceship but through the birth canal like one of us. Jesus grew up, fell over, cried (I do not accept the christmas carol at all, babies cry), had friends, a business. Jesus also came to make the world a better place, to bring justice, forgiveness and a new way to live. He fought against the world order to bring about this new kingdom of God. He fought hard against those who were abusing the poor, the orphan and the widow.

Batman is not a brilliant Jesus analogy but he is human and is followed by tragedy by violence and suffering to bring about the order required. Batman's quest is a band aid, a war fought by one man against the filth, and violence of those who would live by abuse, crime, oppression and death. Batman would sacrifice his own life for another's and do what every it would take to save his city. Batman is mortal, he can die, he has no powers all he has is the mission to avenge his parents death at the hands of crime generated by poverty, cruelty and injustice.

Jesus is divine and human he does give his life to avenge the death of all our parents (Adam and Eve) a death that should not have happened the way it did. Jesus waged a one man war against sin and death telling the world he had come to free those chained to the strong man he had come to defeat. In giving his life on the cross Jesus frees us from the clutches of sin and death doing something no normal man can do. The proof of this is that Jesus rises back to life, but, his body still bears the scars of his very human suffering. A body that now exists in the dimension of Heaven that lives alongside us as Lord of this universe waiting till he appears again to come and judge the living and the dead.

People find it hard to communicate these two natures, we rarely do have anything in our world to compare to the best of humanity and a gracious and noble divinity. What we do have are constructs that depict these two natures of Jesus in the very well known and knowable characters Superman and Batman. The world's finest super-heroes joined together to make an analogy of a concept that is a stumbling block those who say they believe Jesus is the son of God. It is not a perfect analogy and no analogy ever is. It is just a momentary light of understanding that you can use to grab hold of something of Jesus nature. Jesus has to be divine otherwise he cannot save us from sin and death, he has to be human otherwise there is nothing for us to relate to. The achievement of Jesus has to be something we can attain, not through trying hard and being moral or fighting evil but by faith in what Jesus has done for all of us. Jesus is Superman from another place with powers beyond mortal men. Jesus is also Batman whose parents were stolen from him, who fights the evil powers to save us with suffering and death. We cannot separate these natures so that is the reason for me not separating Superman and Jesus.