[The following devotional is a part of our 2015 Easter Season Devotional Book “Passion Road.” We will be posting a devotional each day on this blog between February 18 – April 5, 2014.]
Super Man by Mark Robinson
Read: Philippians 2:1-11
Have you ever seen a movie, read a comic book, or watched a television show about Superman? Most Americans have at least a moderate familiarity with the Man of Steel. Superman is the consummate super hero – able to leap tall buildings in a single bound and race faster than a speeding bullet.
Among his many impressive attributes, Superman can also hide his identity in plain sight. He is able to accomplish this disappearing act simply by putting a sport coat over his iconic “S” pajamas and putting on a pair of glasses. By contrast Batman needs a mask and an angry growl for a voice to conceal his real life identity as Bruce Wayne. Superman, on the other hand needs only some spectacles to conceal his identity and pass as Clark Kent.
Though his cover seems visually flimsy to those who watch his movies, Superman hides behind our expectations more than his glasses. “Surely that average joe newspaper reporter could not be Super,” reason his co-workers. Clark Kent’s normalcy allowed people to miss his obvious super identity.
In Philippians 2:1-11, the Apostle Paul describes the process whereby the Son of God came to earth. In these verses Paul answers the question, “How did ANYONE in Israel in the first century not recognize Jesus as the Savior of the world?” After all, Jesus did not growl when he talked, wear a mask, OR EVEN GLASSES! How did people miss Him?
People missed Jesus’s identity because Jesus was hiding amidst their expectations. People expected to see Superman, but instead they saw Clark Kent. They expected Him to be born in a palace, instead, He was born in a barn. They expected Him to ride in on a chariot, instead He rode in on a donkey. They expected Him to overthrow the Romans, instead He overhauled their hearts. The super expectations of the Israelite leaders caused many to miss a truly Super Man.
Philippians 2:1-11 makes sense of Jesus decision to come as Clark Kent . . . in part He was setting an example for His followers to imitate. If the Son of God would stoop to serve the world which He created, how much more should we serve others as well. Too often we get caught up in what we think we deserve (respect, privilege, opportunity, etc.). With these self-focused expectations, we can fail to put others needs before our own. When we place ourselves before others, we can miss some super chances to be used by the Son of Man. Don’t miss Jesus’s will for your life. The normal looking opportunities to serve others give us the chance to partner with the Super Man.
- Why do you think people in His day failed to see that Jesus was the Savior of the world?
- What are some ways you can assume the mind of Christ and serve others today?
- Pray and ask God for the humility to serve those around you.