Good morning. Today we are continuing our series looking at different heroes. When you first heard the term “hero” what came to your mind? Perhaps you thought of a sports hero like Lance Armstrong or Tiger Woods. Or maybe an action hero like Mel Gibson. Some of us possibly thought of a military hero like Jessica Lynch or a fantasy hero like Superman.
For me, I always connected with John Wayne. John Wayne was a man’s man and a tough guy. He rode into town, cleaned things up and did it in a way that made me want to buy a horse, a six shooter and see what I could do with our town.
As I look at all those heroes I see a common denominator: they are all safe. Some of them are safe simply because they are not real. Some are safe because they are just playing a role. Others are safe because I could never physically do what they do. Our hero’s are safe and that, I believe, is part of their attraction.
This morning if I were to ask you to name your favorite hero I would expect you to say, “Mark, I like John Wayne but I’m at church so I’m going to say Jesus.” And today, that is the right answer. Today we are going to consider Jesus as our hero.
This is sort of like the old story of a 2nd grade boy attending a Sunday school class. The teacher was telling a story that involved animals. Looking at her class she asked, “What is brown, furry, has a bushy tail and collects nuts to eat?”
The class responded with an eerie silence. Finally a little boy responded, “Teacher, it sure sounds like a squirrel but I’m going to say Jesus.”
Now right up front I want us to acknowledge that our task is beyond our reach.
Jesus blows the standards when it comes to heroes. He is unique. He is supreme. He is different. Different in the same way that a candle is different that the sun. They both may give off light but that is where the comparison ends.
But I encourage you with this; this task has been out of reach for others as well.
David said, “Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; His greatness no one can fathom.” Psalm 145:3
Christ supercedes our grandest thoughts and surpasses our best efforts at description. He is a hero beyond of our ability to explain. So what are we to do? I would propose that today we dance on the very edge of mystery. That we strive to describe the indescribable. Let’s remember however, that the closer we get to mystery the further we get from our ability to explain and describe that mystery.
To help us do that I want us to look at Colossians 1:15-22 together. These two paragraphs are going to tell us that the hero Christ is supreme to all others because His nature is unique and because His work is unmatched. This truth is then going to demand that we answer two personal questions:
1. Have you and I made Jesus into a hero who is safe?
2. Do I really want Jesus as my hero?
Read Colossians 1:15-18
The Unique Nature of the Hero Christ: verses 15-18
1. The hero Christ is divine: “the image of the invisible God”: vs. 15a
The word “image” does not speak to physical image but to the very person of God and Christ. It communicates the idea of an image on a coin that is an exact representation of a real person. Or the idea of looking into a mirror where you see an exact representation of yourself.