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The Superhero Substitution

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Comic book superheroes have come to dominate popular culture as never before: of the ten top opening weekends in Hollywood history, seven of them featured superheroes from Marvel or DC comics. Most recently, Iron Man and other luminaries from the Marvel galaxy co-starred with Captain America in CIVIL WAR, which earned nearly $200,000,000 in its first three days of release. These familiar figures, each with distinctive powers, personality and back story, function like Olympians for the ancient Greeks, or Norse gods for the Vikings; in fact, the popular THOR movies feature a Norse God.

Is it a coincidence that the power of these comic book gods has increased just as the authority of the Biblical God seems to have dissipated – with an unprecedented 20% of Americans now describing themselves as disconnected from organized religion?

Batman and Superman may be beloved figures, but they offer a feeble substitute for the more significant, more richly human figures in Scripture.

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