Amazing Spider-Man #700

So I purchased the Amazing Spider-Man finale.  It’s kind of a big deal in nerd-dom.  I’m going to say some things that may spoil the book for you, so be warned.

Here’s the deal.  Peter Parker is probably the comic book nerds greatest hero.  Peter is a nerdy awkward kid who through a freak radioactive spider accident gains super powers.  (Yeah, we know that doesn’t make any sense so stop judging us!” Said every comic book fan ever).

Because of Peter’s early selfishness he loses his Uncle Ben.  But the lesson that Uncle Ben passed on to Peter, that with great power comes great responsibility, is forever etched in Peter’s life.  It becomes his creed.  Peter devotes the rest of his life to sticking up for the powerless.

For little nerds everywhere when we are introduced to Peter we are shown a character we can relate with, and when we imagine what it would be like to be a super hero, Peter Parker is the guy that we want to be.

In Amazing Spider-Man 700 the dying Doctor Octopus has brain swapped Peter Parker.  So Doc Ock is in Peter’s healthy body and Peter Parker is Doc Ock’s dying body.  (Again, we know it doesn’t make any sense.)

Peter tries to reverse what Ock has done but to no avail.  However, is switching brains, Doc Ock somehow has all of Peter’s memories and understands what it means to be Spider-Man and vows to be a Superior Spider-Man.  Conveniently that’s the new title for the Spider-Man Series.

Why would Marvel do this to such a beloved hero?  Money!

Well yeah, of course money.  Marvel is a business and guess what, they are going to do everything for money.  So for all the nerds out there angry about this marketing ploy get over it.

But here is my hope for a second motivation.  My hope is that somehow, the Spider Creed “With great power comes great responsibility” is shown to be the reason that we’ve been reading this book for so long. Because that’s how super heroes are supposed to live.  Even though Doctor Octopus is Spider-Man’s greatest enemy when he fully understands the Spider Creed he can be truly great.

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Christmas is here

Tonight we got our Campus ready for our Christmas Sunday Services.  We are going to be doing four services on Sunday the 23rd.  CRAZY!

It’s amazing to think about how much God has done over the last three and a half years since we moved into our Mountlake Terrace Campus.  This is our fourth Christmas in Mountlake Terrace.  Wouldn’t it be amazing if we added another service for every year?  I don’t even know how we could possible make 20 services happen. But that would be pretty amazing. 

All the work for the Christmas service is done.  Now we are eagerly anticipating the day when all kinds of guests will come through our doors to hear about Jesus and his birth and why any of this really matters.  

I’m hoping to meet many new faces.  I’m praying that the people I invited to our services will come.  I’m looking forward to celebrating Jesus on Sunday with my kids in the service.  I’m really excited to see what God is going to do in us and through us.

And I’m really looking forward to the next chapter at Creekside.  Big things are coming for Creekside Church.  You definitely want to be part of it!

Virgin Birth – Anticipation – God’s Promises

Isaiah 7:13-17

13 Then Isaiah said, “Hear now, you house of David! Is it not enough to try the patience of humans? Will you try the patience of my God also? 14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. 15 He will be eating curds and honey when he knows enough to reject the wrong and choose the right, 16 for before the boy knows enough to reject the wrong and choose the right, the land of the two kings you dread will be laid waste.  17 The Lord will bring on you and on your people and on the house of your father a time unlike any since Ephraim broke away from Judah—he will bring the king of Assyria.”

I’m working on a message for this Sunday about how God’s people have always anticipated a savior.  All the way from Genesis 3 right up to the coming of Jesus.  They were anticipating the savior to fulfill a few roles, prophet, priest and king.  So I’m talking about that anticipation.

Now when Jesus was born, he was born to a vigin named Mary.  Growing up I always heard this supported by Isaiah 7:14, which would be read completely out of context.  In the text, God’s people are facing war with some enemies, and they are worried.  And God says, I will give you a sign that you can trust me that I will protect you, “the virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.”  That’s the sign that God says he will give to his people that they don’t have to worry about the enemy that they are facing.

This text has troubled me because Jesus wasn’t born for many centuries after this.  So how is this sign a comfort for the people back then.  And what does this have to do with Jesus being born to a virgin.  And the whole thing has been very confusing to me.   Is it ok for a pastor to be confused by the Bible some times? I sure hope so.

Anyway, while I was reading this, I read the rest of the context and I wonder if this is what God is saying by giving this sign is this,  ” You will not have to worry about this enemy, because I’m going to defeat them.  I’m the God that can make a virgin conceive a baby.  And before that baby is old enough to eat cottage cheese, your enemy that you’re worried about, is just not going to be your problem anymore. Those kings that you’re worried about, will be laid waste.  So trust me. ”

And then, when Jesus was actually conceived to a virgin, in Nazareth, where were those kings that the people were worried about?  They were long gone and in the history book.  But God’s people, though they had some rough years, were still around.

So in reading this, and processing this  and trying to get a handle on how to talk about it on Sunday, this is how it is all coming together in my brain and in my heart.  God’s promises are always fulfilled.  It might not look the way we think it will look and it might not happen when we want it to happen, but God always fulfills his promises.  he promised that a virgin would conceive, and she did.  And her son was the Son of God, Jesus.

Just some rambling thoughts about the virgin birth.

Merry Christmas!