The Missing Avenger

Happy Memorial Day! This is one of the more important holidays in my book so I want to send out a big thank you to all of our service men and women who go to great lengths to keep our country safe.

Thinking of war heroes made me think of a movie I recently saw, and then the ponderings that followed about who are some war heroes that don’t get a holiday or a movie, but might need one.

Recently I went to see The Avengers after hearing several good recommendations about it. Now although I am a supporter of Disney, which owns Marvel now, I wasn’t originally planning on seeing this flick because I’ve never been really into the whole superheros thing. I also guessed that I might be confused watching it since I haven’t seen any of the previous films and don’t know the background story on any of them.

However I am happy to say that I followed the story pretty easily, with help from my friend who did know the background, and that overall it was a great action-packed movie. Yet throughout the dashing explosions, close-calls, swishes, bangs, and rescues I couldn’t help but wonder about why everyone I talked to loved this movie so much. What is it that makes The Avengers a blockbuster hit?

photo courtesy of DigitalTrends.com

I’m here to offer up another conclusion: we have lots of Avengers missing from our team (besides Superman, Spiderman, Green Lantern, and a host of other traditional superheroes) that can be found in the traces of history or the folds of our Bible.

Here is one example: the story of Gideon.

Similar to the Avengers team and their final battle against a multitude of slimy beings from another world, Gideon was outnumbered. He had only three hundred men versus thousands of Midianites, people from another far-off country who appeared seemingly overnight, just like the aliens in The Avengers that came out of thin air from a black hole gateway in the sky. Using some smart thinking and strategic brilliance, Gideon divided his men and conquered the Midianites to save all of Israel. The Avengers team likewise divided and conquered during their epic battle so that Hawkeye could take people out from the sky, Hulk could thrash around, and the rest of the team could do their part to save all of Manhattan.

True the fate of the world wasn’t necessarily at stake, and all of Manhattan wasn’t about to be blown up by a nuclear bomb, but the story of Gideon is one of many in the Bible that reaches super-hero proportions. I have no problem with movies like The Avengers, indeed I enjoyed the movie a good deal, but sometimes I wonder whether we should go back to the heroes of old. Maybe sometime we should retell the stories that have survived all of history to rest inside our Bibles, to retell the dredges of the Old Testament to remember the epic battles that God has overseen so that he could fulfill the Gospel and save the entire world from darkness. Just a thought, it might make a good war movie – and who doesn’t love one of those?

Which Old Testament figure do you think would make a good superhero?

or which story would make for a good movie?

just wait – Hollywood will be calling me any day now :]