As a young boy, around the age of seven, all I wanted was to be Superman. I can still remember my birthday when I received a red Superman cape. The minute I put on the cape, I knew I was stronger than a locomotive, faster than a speeding bullet, and able to leap over tall buildings. There was nothing better than watching my cape flapping in the wind. Every week I watched the TV show Superman (on black and white TV).
Can we use Superman as a metaphor? I believe we can relate as believers in Jesus to the metaphor of Superman. There are several similarities. Superman is not from this world, and as a child of God, we are not of this world (John 15:19). He possesses supernatural powers that normal humans do not possess. We are supernaturally empowered in ways the world is not (Acts 1:8). He fought against evil, and we fight against evil (Ephesians 6:12). Superman protects and liberates those oppressed by villains (Psalm 91); He is about truth as we are about the truth of God’s Word (John 14:7). He brings justice as the Lord brings justice to the world we live in (Romans 12:19). We guard the weak and set the captives free (John 8:32). He draws his strength from the sun; we draw our strength from the SON (Isaiah 41:10).
Only one thing can stop Superman, Kryptonite, a radioactive substance from this home planet, Krypton. We have Kryptonite that comes from our home world, sin, that can neutralize a child of God (Romans 6:23). Kryptonite neutralized Superman’s powers and made him weaker than a human. Our sins can disqualify us and weaken our abilities (1 Corinthians 9:27).
2 Corinthians 12:7-10 (NKJV), “And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. Concerning this thing, I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness. Therefore, most gladly, I will rather boast in my infirmities that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore, I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
Our superpower comes from the Holy Spirit that releases in us God’s Grace to empower every believer despite their inadequacies and failures (2 Corinthians 9:8). God’s Grace gives us strength or dunamis (Greek Word). God’s miraculous power to overcome falsehoods, unfairness, temptations, trials, and difficulties (Ephesians 3:16) and more.
Every time we pray, we may not get the answer we want. We want to note that Paul’s thorn was not removed. The Spirit of God assured him that he would continue to work through Paul in his weakness. Paul would see miracles, he would pray, and people would be healed, but for him, in this, he did not get what he asked for in prayer. Yet Christ’s strength was made perfect in Paul’s weakness.
When I am weak; then I am strong BY THE GRACE OF GOD! This is saying to us that EVEN IN our weaknesses, we can still be and act as who we were created to be and function as children of God BY HIS GRACE!
The one thing that could weaken Superman was Kryptonite, which came from his home planet. The one thing that can weaken us is the sin that comes out from our world and the evil forces trying to steal, kill or destroy our strength (John 10:10). If you were asked what’s your weakness or Kryptonite? How would you answer? I have never known a person who was not struggling with some Kryptonite.
What is our Kryptonite? Our Kryptonite is sin that comes in many forms: spiritual idolatry, known disobedience to the will, and the Word of God. It is when a believer is given over to sin, which is different from when a believer falls into sin and repents. Any time we get around idols and disobey God’s will and the Word of God, we are weakened, which can lead to death (1 Cor. 11:30).
We all have weaknesses. We all have vulnerabilities and imperfections. But we don’t have to deny or disguise those weaknesses or dismiss them as insignificant. On the contrary, we can own up to our weaknesses and allow the Holy Spirit to help us and provide His healing, grace, and power.
1 Timothy 4:14, “Do not neglect the gift you have, which was given you by prophecy when the council of elders laid their hands on you.” Acts 6:8, “And Stephen, full of grace and power, was doing great wonders and signs among the people.” Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”
Faster than a speeding bullet. More powerful than a locomotive. Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. Look! Up in the sky. It’s a bird. It’s a plane. It’s Superman!
See you Sunday at 9 am. and at 11 am. as we look at the amazing promises of God’s Grace,