I got this idea from BigPhatpastor. What would happen if superheroes were saved by the love of Jesus Christ? I’m not religious at all: I’m an atheist, but I’ve probably been to more church services than any other atheist on the planet. So I think about religion a lot. A force that is prevalent as religion should be front and centre in your mind, whether you’re religious or not.
Superheroes, the kind you see in comic books, are sort of like gods to begin with. They wrestle with a lot of the same moral quandaries that plagued the biblical characters. So what would happen if superheroes experienced the same religious epiphanies that happens to us regular people?
1. Batman – there is little question as to what would happen to this guy. Batman already has a bit of a God complex, and not only that, he has an obsession with law and order. The death of his parents spurred him into wearing a silly blue costume and and a mask with bat-ears. So Batman? He would be a religious extremist. The background is there already. He would be the guy who would maybe not plant bombs himself, but would be the mastermind behind all the logistics of a large-scale terror operation. The mid-east and possibly the United States would be dramatically different with a Christian Batman on the scene. Batman would be the most dangerous religious person alive.
2. Hulk - The Hulk is powerful, violent, and prone to childish misunderstandings. He is the reformed criminal you might see sitting by himself in the first or second pew on Sunday morning, staring brutishly down into the Bible and tearfully hanging onto every word the minister says. The Hulk has spent much of his life looking to be left along, for peace and quiet, and it is precisely someone like that who needs religion. He would need somewhere to go every week, and perhaps he needs a place to go a few times during the week when he feels really angry. (And you wouldn’t like to see him get angry). I don’t think the church he would attend would have anything to fear from him, but if someone tried to replace the church with a shopping mall, look out!
3. Thor - It’s not much point to even consider but what happened if someone like Thor were to be saved by Jesus Christ. Thor is already a god. He may even hobnob with Jesus when Jesus pops up to visit Asgard for some summer icefishing and the yearly Ice-troll hunt. Or maybe the Christian God and Odin get together, drink beer, and compare notes about whose godly sons are planning to betray their families, and whose godly sons got into medical school. Thor doesn’t really fit into the Saved question.
4. Superman - A powerful, all-knowing father figure sends his unusual powerful son to planet Earth? Again, like Thor, Superman doesn’t really fit into the Jesus Saves question. Superman is a metaphor for Jesus. He is so much a metaphor for Jesus that during his infamous and extremely lucrative death a few years back, he died to save everyone. Now, if Superman were to actually buy into the Christian doctrine and be saved by Jesus Christ, I don’t think he would be all that different. He would still save people, and still selflessly dedicate himself to the protection of Earth and everyone upon it. He was a Dudley Do-Right to begin with.
5. Swamp Thing - Swamp thing, the most sophisticated and darkest of the superhero Canon. He might be someone who would really benefit from some religion. He’s a tortured soul who barely understands his own origins. How happy do think you he would be if he could put aside all his concerns about being an Earth Elemental and just lead a Christian life? Swamp Thing would benefit from going to church every now and then. He would be nowhere near as cool as he was before, but I’m thinking about what’s good for him.
6. Spider-man - I honestly can’t imagine what Spiderman would be like if he were Saved. He’s such a witty and irreverent hero, but since this is just an excercise, I’ll have to go there anyway. I think Spiderman would be a boring and dreary Ned Flanders type of Christian. He’s the sort who would probably feel guilty for his own irreverent thoughts, and would repress them with Scripture. Imagine him as the peppy, clean-cut young guy with a guitar who leads the musical part of the service, but does it with just a little too well. Religion and Spiderman do not mix.
7. Wolverine - This is getting exhausting! Wolverine is a lot like the Hulk: violent, misanthropic, and prone to persecution. Wolverine would be the guy who ministers to alcoholics, homeless people, and drug addicts in the really bad parts of town. He’s the sort who would walk out of missions and ask people to come in and pray with him. He would head down to the docks for some mobile communion, blessing, confession, and baptism. A real front-line soldier for Christ, and someone who would have no problem dealing with the more ungodly influences in the neighborhood. All in all, I think Wolverine would be improved by a bit of Christianity, but he would still be a creepy loner. (Addendum: After a bit of research, I discovered that Wolverine may be religious, and in past issues has sought out the counsel of a catholic priest)