CLERGY CORNER: Jesus, the Hero

Posted on 24 March 2016 by LeslieM

Bonnie Tyler had a top 40 hit in the 1980s with the song “Holding Out for a Hero.” The lyrics ask:

Where have all the good men gone, and where are all the gods?

Where’s the street-wise Hercules to fight the rising odds?

Isn’t there a white knight upon a fiery steed?

Late at night, I toss and I turn and I dream of what I need.

The chorus adds:

I need a hero … I’m holding out for a hero ‘til the end of the night.

He’s gotta be strong and he’s gotta be fast and he’s gotta be fresh from the fight.

I need a hero … I’m holding out ‘til the morning light.

He’s gotta be sure, and it’s gotta be soon, and he’s gotta be larger than life…

Heroes are those who are characterized by strength, daring and courageous exploits. Marvel and D.C. comics have created superheroes that may seem weak momentarily in the contest against evildoers, but they always gain the upper hand and come out on top. Real life heroes are those people who can do for us what we often cannot do for ourselves. They may even make the ultimate sacrifice, and give their lives to defend or aid their fellow man.

As we prepare to remember and celebrate the passion of our Savior, we consider Him to be our hero. But Jesus is a hero of a different sort because His victory did not occur through His physical dominance over His enemies. In fact, even though the Biblical Hebrews of His day were anxiously awaiting the arrival of their promised Messiah, they ultimately rejected Jesus because He did not fit the pattern of an expected hero. They were looking for a military general, similar to King David, who would defeat their foes and restore them to prominence as a people.

Instead, Jesus seemingly ignored the cruelty of Rome, but focused on the spirit and behavior of His people. He won the crowds with His preaching and miracles, but angered the Pharisees and priests with His disregard for their traditions. In the end, He was brutalized, mocked and humiliated through crucifixion. He was made to suffer unjustly, and then put to death. Yet, He was victorious, despite His suffering and through His suffering. His death resulted in salvation. He is the ultimate hero, one who willingly gave His life for the good of mankind.

His suffering and death were predicted centuries before His arrival. Genesis 3:15 is believed to be a Messianic pronouncement pointing to the crucifixion of Jesus. The serpent is cursed for deceiving Adam and Eve, and God informs him “I will put enmity between you and the woman. And between your seed and her Seed. He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.”

Psalm 22:16-18 foreshadows scenes at the cross. “For dogs have surrounded Me; the congregation of the wicked has enclosed Me. They pierced My hands and My feet; I can count all My bones. They look and stare at Me. They divide My garments among them, and for My clothing they cast lots.”

Isaiah 53:3 graphically describes the anticipated Messiah as a suffering servant. “He is despised and rejected by men, a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.”

Heroes are usually celebrated for their actions. Though the majority of His day rejected Him, countless believers today faithfully acknowledge and serve Jesus for His sacrifice. He is our Savior and Hero.

Bishop Patrick L. Kelly is the pastor of Cathedral Church of God, 365 S. Dixie Hwy., Deerfield Beach, FL 33441. 954-427-0302.

Comments are closed.

Advertise Here
Advertise Here