SUPERMAN FINALLY DEFEATED

When I was a boy, Superman was the ultimate hero. And it wasn’t just because he was powerful. Certainly it was remarkable that he could fly, that he had X-ray vision and a host of other super powers. But what was great about Superman is that he was good. He used his powers to fight evil. He was the champion of the underdog, the weak, and the defenseless. He was the champion of truth and justice.

 

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The original B&W TV series introduction always included these lines: “Faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, able to leap tall buildings at a single bound― look, up in the sky: it’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s Superman!!”

Superman! Who can change the course of mighty rivers, bend steel in his bare hands, (and who, disguised as Clark Kent, mild-mannered reporter for a great metropolitan newspaper) fights a never-ending battle for truth, justice, and the American way!”

As a boy, for me there was never any doubt that Superman could master any foe arrayed against him.

His only nemesis was Kryptonite. Nothing and nobody would ever be able to defeat Superman!

Well, recently a good friend introduced me to a graphic-novel style comic book called KINGDOM COME, which took me by surprise. Something which I would never have guessed, has finally been able to defeat Superman. And what is really surprising is that what has finally defeated Superman is something with a spiritual dimension.

Of course, when I was a boy I knew nothing about the spiritual dimension. Never in all my born days was I ever told about being Born Again, and about the invisible Kingdom of God.

Never did anybody ever come alongside and say, “did you know that one of these days you will have a body with some of the attributes of Superman?” That would have been so exciting!! When I say “spiritual dimension” I refer to the invisible world of the Kingdom of God. This kingdom cannot be accessed physically. Nobody can enter the kingdom by force, although many try. The only way into the Kingdom of God is through a moral gateway. By moral gateway I mean that a person has to face the fact that this is a moral universe. The Creator has made the physical universe incredibly complex and vast, and there are many powers which control the physical universe, but there is also an invisible power at work which prevents people from moving from the physical universe into the spiritual universe. That power is morality― the province of right and wrong, good and evil. God will not allow evil to cross over into the spiritual universe.

To accomplish this, God has set a very narrow door  between this universe and the next.

  “Strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”  Matthew 7:14

The only way a man can pass from this physical universe into the spiritual universe (heaven) is by admitting his sinfulness, confessing his sin, and asking God to forgive him his sin through  the provision offered by the Lord Jesus Christ. (Jesus Christ died for sin, and when we call on him to save us from sin, we are forgiven and “born again” into the kingdom of God.)

I say all this to emphasise the fact that all the mighty powers of Superman cannot enable him to break into Heaven. The only way to get into heaven is through the blood of Jesus Christ. If you do not understand this, then pray about it and start to follow the links (in this article and other similar articles) which will bring you to understand what I mean.

IMMORTALITY

I do not know if this is true, because I don’t remember ever reading this, but I think I heard it mentioned that Superman was actually immortal. The panel to the left is typical. It shows Superman back home on his parent’s farm in Smallville and the caption says, “with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal men.”tractor

The other advantage of living in  the Kingdom of God is that you become an immortal. This familiar verse, John 3:16, says so:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son,

that  whosoever believeth  in  him  should  not  perish,  but  have

everlasting life.”  

No wonder I was so fond of Superman when Iwas a boy! How I wished then that I could become an immortal!

image004The shocking thing about the comic KINGDOM COME is that Superman has gone into self-exile. He has retreated from the world and gone to live alone in a virtual-reality mockup of his parent’s farm. The narrator of the story tells us that Superman has abandoned his never ending battle for “truth, justice and the American way. ”  In fact, his self-exile has caused a great many other   super   heroes   to   follow   suit.   “Superman   suddenly abandoning his never- ending battle took an immeasurable toll on his contemporaries, his peers. Some, their Spirit stripped, chose Supermans path and retired. Others, unable to  turn their backs completely on the world they know, continue to used their special abilities to champion order.

KINGDOM COME also includes Wonder Woman,  who goes after Superman encouraging him to come back out of retirement. She tries to appeal to his sense of responsibility, telling him that the World needs him back on duty. But he refuses to return. He cannot muster the strength to go back into the fight. Imagine that, Superman refusing to get back into the fight, giving up on fighting for truth, justice, and the American way! The thought would have been impossible 50 years ago!

TRUTH, JUSTICE

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Here, in this story called KINGDOM COME,    the  writers  and  artists of  the Superman comic strip almost unconsciously mirror the tragic events that have swept through and befallen America in our generation. Looking through the eyes of a comic book hero, we see the death of something we never thought could die. People can die, cities can  be  razed  to  the  ground,  whole worlds can be destroyed, but what we never realised is that some of the most precious  things  in  our  culture―  the things we took for granted― could be and would be destroyed in our own lifetimes!

What was destroyed? Truth. Justice.

What does this mean? How could this happen?

What it means is that the intangible, invisible ideologies of a nation and a civilization can be destroyed, with devastating results.

What is an ideology? The dictionary defines ideology as “a set of doctrines or body of opinions that people have”.  Ideology includes all that the people in as culture or civilization believe.

The ideology of American has been destroyed. What does this mean and how did it happen?

Well, you see, there was a time (when the Superman comic strip was first released) when all Americans believed in basically the same things, the same basics or fundamentals.  These were so foundational to the country that the Constitution phrased them like this: “we hold these truths to be self-evident:”

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are  Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”

These familiar words refer to the foundational concepts on which the American society was built― concepts such as life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness― but also the concepts that allow these to exist― concepts like truth, justice, freedom, liberty. ( “Sweet land of Liberty, of thee I sing!” )

For these to exist,  there MUST be truth. Truth refers to the way things really are. There are many aspects to the concept of truth, but  one of them is the acknowledging of the fact that there is such a thing as right and wrong. There is such a thing as good and evil.

This is what drove Superman into retirement. Superman could only exist in a society where there was a definite difference between good and evil. After all, there had to be a bad guy for Superman to be the good guy. What made a man a bad guy? He did bad things. He did evil things.   He stole stuff. Hurt and killed people. Kidnapped them. Lied, cheated, stole, and terrorized people. Superman could save people from bad men doing bad things.

But he could no longer save anybody when bad and good, good and evil, were eradicated from  the English language. In American schools for decades now the  liberal educators have indoctrinated children into the idea that there is no longer any good and evil, bad and good― that something is good if you think it’s good, and bad if you think it’s bad― but somebody else might have a different opinion. So, for instance, you might think it’s bad to take off your clothes in public, but others might think it’s good. You might think it’s bad for people to lie, but others might think it’s good. You might think it’s good and  smart to cheat on exams, and others might think it’s bad. You might think it’s good to download movies and music off the internet without paying― but others might think it’s bad. Bad and good are a matter of personal preference and opinion.

This new system of morality is called moral relativity. In this system,  all moral judgments are relative. (This is actually not a new system― it is one of the oldest moral systems in the world. It  used to  be  called “immorality”— meaning “without morals”.) The root cause of  this new morality is the fact that the American people have departed from what was once the foundational belief of the American system―   the belief in God, that God is not only the Creator but also the judge of what is right and wrong, good and evil.

In any case― and you should study this matter further because it is truly a matter of “life and death”― the Bible was once the moral code on which the American system operated. No longer! People have been taught to believe that good and evil are relative, dependent on our personal preferences, and that our  former ideas of good and evil can actually be  reversed.

Not so! Not without drastic consequences!

The Bible specifically warns that we must not mix up the ideas of good and evil.

Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” (Isaiah 5:20)

When good and evil are confused, justice fails, because the only way justice can be determined is if good is rewarded and evil punished. The Bible says in Isaiah  59:14,15 “And judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter.  Yea, truth faileth; and he that departeth from evil maketh himself a prey: and the LORD saw it, and it displeased him that there was no judgment.”

When the Bible was tossed out of the school system, the system of morality on which the Bible rests was thrown out with it. As a result the American people no longer believe in right and wrong― and in fact,  they are incensed when someone like  Superman intervenes in their affairs to  supposedly save them  from “bad men”  They say, “What right does Superman have to judge who is good and who is bad?”

The result? Superman disappears. The champion of truth, justice, and the “American way” is finally defeated. What comes up to replace him is a ragtag group of self-important, selfish, irresponsible super heroes, who live basically to show off their skills and take advantage of the “mere mortals” they were supposed to protect. You  see, POWER without MORALITY always corrupts. POWER without a clear moral boundary always degrades into abuse, dictatorship, terrorism,wanton violence and irresponsible behaviour.image010

Look at the panel to the right. The  new  “heroes”  who  replace Superman  have  super  powers, but  no  sense of  responsibility― and   the   rest   of   the   comic “KINGDOM  COME”   chronicles how such an irresponsible bunch of heroes stands back and lets the villains terrorize and take over the world.

If you are concerned about the direction this country is taking, then do something about it. “How?” you may ask, ”I’ve got no super powers.” Yes you do― you have the Lord Jesus Christ on your side if you are on the side of truth, justice, and the former “America way.”

How can you get on Jesus Christ’s side?

Follow some of the links on this site and read further!

Check it out.  Christ is the real and the only Superman in all of human history!

john.idems@rogers.com

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