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Here’s what I struggled with after watching Captain America: Steve Rogers appeared to be too otherworldly. He is so good and self-sacrificing. He is so willing to lay down his life for others that he even appears to be self-centered to his friends. You’re thinking – is this guy for real? No one is this good! But then as I thought about it, I realized: that is much more an indictment on my own heart and our culture than the story. In truth, the goodness and manliness of the imperfect Rogers is what makes Captain America such a worthwhile film.

Captain America is Jonathan

One day Jonathan the son of Saul said to the young man who carried his armor, “Come, let us go over to the Philistine garrison on the other side.” But he did not tell his father…

Then Jonathan climbed up on his hands and feet, and his armor-bearer after him. And they fell before Jonathan, and his armor-bearer killed them after him. And that first strike, which Jonathan and his armor-bearer made, killed about twenty men within as it were half a furrow’s length in an acre of land. And there was a panic in the camp, in the field, and among all the people. The garrison and even the raiders trembled, the earth quaked, and it became a very great panic. (1 Samuel 14:1, 13-15 ESV)

Jonathan, the son of Saul (surprising, eh?), is a man of courage and yet humility. He is brash and, with the help of his armor bearer, and decides to take on a whole Philistine garrison by himself – which leads to a great victory. He has such a faith and an almost unbelievable self-forgetfulness about him. He cares not that David would be king instead of him – he embraces David as a loyal and dear brother. He cares not for power. He sticks with his father even as Saul becomes more and more insane and given over to darkness. Jonathan is one of the most amazing people we learn about in the Old Testament. We named my son (middle name) after him because of all this. Jonathan is very real and very much lived. I’m sure he had struggles we don’t know about, but he was an amazing man.

Steve Rogers, AKA Captain America, is Jonathan. He cares nothing for glory or for power. He cares for his friends. He hates evil and bullies. He counts himself expendable for the fight against evil and is ready and willing to lay down his life. It’s almost unbelievable but I think that’s because these traits tend to be lacking in our comfortable and safe American lifestyle.

I love the humility of Steve Rogers. He’s so unaware of himself. He is extremely loyal. He can take a beating. He is sold out to a purpose higher than himself and everything is merely a bonus. You can’t help but root for Captain America even in a all the cheesy, but not cynical, patriotism.

Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love. (1 Corinthians 16:13-14 ESV)

Captain America is very good film. Out of the films released this summer, it’s up there and it definitely came through on the hype. I appreciated the bittersweet ending, even knowing what was coming, because of the character of Steve Rogers. I wanted more of these characters and more of Steve Rogers.

Be sure to wait until all the way past the credits before getting up out of your seat, you will be rewarded.

Can’t wait for Avengers

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