Jim Denison: “Avengers: Endgame” and a Culture Desperately in Need of Heroes

“Avengers: Endgame” won’t be released until April 26, but it broke the internet this week.

Six hours after tickets went on sale, the film had already surpassed the number of ticket sales in the first twenty-four hours for the previous record holder, Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Both AMC and Fandango experienced crashes that kept fans from buying tickets. “I have never seen anything like this,” tweeted Fandango’s managing editor.

Why is the latest Avengers film already such a phenomenon?

One answer is that the movie is billed as “Marvel Studios’ grand conclusion to twenty-two films” in the franchise. Fans who have watched the others are obviously compelled to watch the series end.

But the larger story here is that we are a culture in dire need of heroes.

Movie critic Erin Free wrote in 2016, “Whether it’s random terrorist attacks, over-population, rising crime rates, the threat of financial collapse, the mental hangover of the Global Financial Crisis, prejudice, ignorance, infectious killer viruses, or just traffic congestion, our world is on a constant knife edge. And in troubled times, people enjoy escapism, and perhaps secretly wish that there were superheroes around to hose down all the horrors of the world.”

Since Free published his article, twelve more superhero movies have appeared in theaters.

Clearly, our need for heroes is not declining.

Creatures dependent on our Creator

We have always needed heroes or, more specifically, a Hero. From our beginning, humans have been creatures dependent on our Creator.

C. S. Lewis: “God made us: invented us as a man invents an engine. A car is made to run on petrol, and it would not run properly on anything else. Now God designed the human machine to run on Himself. He Himself is the fuel our spirits were designed to burn, or the food our spirits were designed to feed on. There is no other.

“That is why it is just no good asking God to make us happy in our own way without bothering about religion. God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there” (Mere Christianity).

Because we were created to depend on our Creator, Satan has tempted us across human history to “be like God” (Genesis 3:5). He knows that when we depend on ourselves rather than our Lord, we inevitably fail. We yield to temptation. We hurt others and ourselves. The long tale of humanity is the story of humans rebelling against their Maker and harming each other in the process.

And the enemy knows that when we trust in anyone or anything more than we trust in God, we grieve our Father’s heart. Our Creator made us for intimacy with himself. Satan knows this and delights in tempting us into self-reliance that lures us away from our Lord.

Is our enemy’s strategy working today?

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Jim Denison