My Name is Michael Fisher And I’m a Superhero
History of Superheroes • 1890’s Newspapers added comic strips to increase circulation • 1933 a compilation book of comic strips called Funnies on Parade is published • In their search for new characters for the books Detective Comics later know as D.C. published the first superhero comic book in 1938, a few years after it’s creation
He has superhuman strength • X-ray vision • Fights evil • Faster than a speeding bullet • His only weakness is Kryptonite • His human side is the mild-mannered reporter Clark Kent
D.C. comics soon added • He was a millionaire industrialist living in a fancy mansion with a Batpole and a butler. • Had super cool gadgets, a cool belt, and a fast car. • His major weakness was being tied up and run through a buzz saw or dipped into acid.
Then the first Super heroine • She was an Amazonian • She had a magic lasso forged from the girdle of Aphrodite by the Greek god Hephaestus • Bullet proof bracelets • Her real name was Princess Diana of Themyscira
The most famous were The Olympians a group of 12 gods who ruled after the overthrow of the Titans. All the Olympians are related in some way. They are named after their dwelling place Mount Olympus. Zeus Poseidon Hades Hestia Hera Ares Athena Apollo Aphrodite Hermes Artemis Hephaestus Greeks had zillions of gods
The Greeks had gods and heroes • Greek heroes "In mythology and legend, a man or woman, often of divine ancestry, who is endowed with great courage and strength, celebrated for his or her bold exploits, and favored by the gods." • Hercules and Jason and the Argonauts most famous of them
D.C. comics similar to Greek/Roman mythological heroes • Had a human side that people can relate to • They were immortal and could not die but had some vulnerability in relation to an object or an energy source • They had superhuman powers as they continued in the battle of good vs. evil • They had very cool uniforms, opening the door for our athletes to wear lycra and like it.
Captain Marvel • With a dual personality, Captain Marvel transformed himself from Billy Batson by saying the name of the wizard “Shazam!” Each letter of “Shazam!” represents an ancient hero: • S, for the wisdom of Solomon; H, for the strength of Hercules; A, for the stamina of Atlas; Z, for the power of Zeus; A, for the courage of Achilles;, M, for the speed of Mercury. Isaac Asimov, Super Heroes Poster Book (New York, 1978)
Marvel Comics starts in 1939 • “Marvel has produced a multitude of superheroes/heroines who derive their super powers from a freak accident or were created by a mad scientist. American science had advanced to the point where the plausibility of such characters could be accepted.” Patricia Flynn
The Comics Code Authority • The 1950’s saw changes that affected the growth of the comic book. Controversy was rampant through the investigations of Senator Joseph McCarthy. Comic books were attacked in Frederic Wertham’s Seduction of the Innocent, published in 1954. Dr. Wertham, a psychiatrist in New York, sensationally suggested that the comic book was a major cause for delinquency in youth. • The comic book industry reacted with the Comics Code Authority. When a comic book passed the restrictions listed in the Code, it displayed a seal of approval on its cover. Over the years the restrictions have been altered, but the Comics Code seal can be found at present on comic book covers. Les, Daniels, Comix: A History of Comic Books in America (New York, 1971)
The Comics Code Authority • Code For Editorial Matter General Standards Part A: 1) Crimes shall never be presented in such a way as to create sympathy for the criminal, to promote distrust of the forces of law and justice, or to inspire others with a desire to imitate criminals. 2) No comics shall explicitly present the unique details and methods of a crime. 3) Policemen, judges, government officials, and respected institutions shall never be presented in such a way as to create disrespect for established authority.
4) If crime is depicted it shall be as a sordid and unpleasant activity. • 5) Criminals shall not be presented so as to be rendered glamorous or to occupy a position which creates the desire for emulation. • 6) In every instance good shall triumph over evil and the criminal punished for his misdeeds.
The Amazing Spiderman in 1963 • Has spider strength and spider sense • Has self doubts concerning his worth • Never has enough money • Does great good for others but has trouble improving his own life • With great power comes great responsibility
Let’s Look at Revival’s Heroes • On October 31st, 1517 nailed 95 debate points up on the door of Wittenberg Hall. • Was banned for his radical views and while in hiding translated the bible into German. • Was constantly battling his own weakness and feelings of inadaquacy.
He Was Willing to Pay the Price • “Unless I am convicted by the testimony of sacred scripture…I cannot and will not recant… Here I stand; I can do no other, God help me, Amen.”
Jonathan Edwards 1703-1764 • A pastor and president of Princeton graduated from Yale at 17 • Would study 13 hrs/day, wrote 100’s of books. • Preached “Sinners in the hands of an angry God” • Revival saw 50,000 new converts in New England in 20 years out of 300,000!
John Wesley 1703-1791 • Was converted at 35 • Would rise daily at 4:00am and be preaching by 5:00am • Over the next 52 years traveled 225,000 miles on horseback preaching 50,000 sermons • Wrote 233 books on subjects including “Primitive Medicine” used for 200 years and an early book on electricity.
George Whitfield 1714-1770 • Grew up in a hotel tavern and a broken home among highway robbers and pimps and drunks • Spent his teen years stealing and carousing • Went off to college at Oxford to try and start a new life. • Joined the Wesley’s Holy Club, and was soon converted
George Whitfield • Got converted in 1734, started preaching • From 1736-1770 he preached 12 times/week for 40-60 hours. Morning, afternoon and evening on Sunday. Mon-Thurs. at 6am and 6pm., and Sat. night. • He would retire at 10:00 and awake at 4:00 but often just study through the night • He would preach to crowds up to 30,000 and was the most famous man in the world
Peter Cartwright (1785-1872) • Was converted at 15, and ordained at 17. • Started preaching in Kentucky but moved to Illinois for 48 years • He was a hellfire and brimstone preacher called “God’s Plowman” • Once took a heckler out back at a meeting and punched his lights out
Charles Finney 1792-1875 • A 6’2” frontiersman from a farming family. He was a musical jokester with a rugged athletic build. Converted as a lawyer at 29 years old. • “no man could run faster, jump further, leap higher, or throw a ball with greater force and precision.”
America’s greatest revivalist, came up with modern evangelistic methods. • Had a deep devotional life producing many books and writings • Over 80% of converts still hot for God 10 years later! • Released power just by entering a room
The Prayer Meeting Revival • More than 50,000 people a week were converted in the U.S. alone for much of 1858-1859 • 1 million lost got saved and over 1 Million church goers got right with God. • U.S. pop. 30,000,000
I Have Supernatural Powers Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. " He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned. "These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues; they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover." Mark 16:15-18 NASU
I have a secret source of power "Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father. " Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. "If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it. John 14:12-14 NASU
No enemy can injure me • "Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing will injure you. Luke 10:19 NASU
No Weapon can harm me "No weapon that is formed against you will prosper; And every tongue that accuses you in judgment you will condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD… Isaiah 54:17 NASU
I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13 NASU
2 Corinthians 5:16-21 NLT • So we have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view. At one time we thought of Christ merely from a human point of view. How differently we know him now! This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! • And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to him. For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people's sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation. So we are Christ's ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, "Come back to God!"
God Chose You! • "You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.” John 15:16 NASU