Medved: The Superhero Substitution

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, personalities and back story, function like Olympians for the ancient Greeks or Norse gods for the Vikings.

Is it a coincidence that the power of these comic book gods has increased just as the perceived authority of the biblical God seems to have dissipated—with an unprecedented 20 percent 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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