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What Makes a Hero? Leader Guide: The Death-Defying Ministry of Jesus

What Makes a Hero? Leader Guide: The Death-Defying Ministry of Jesus

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What Makes a Hero? Leader Guide: The Death-Defying Ministry of Jesus

70 pagine
51 minuti
Dec 19, 2017


What Makes a Hero? offers us an image of what it looks like to be victorious over trials and temptations. Looking at pop culture heroes and others through the lens of faith, Matt Rawle shows how Jesus turned the concept of hero on its head. In keeping with his theme “Pop in Culture,” the book examines how good vs. evil, right vs. wrong, and overcoming adversity are fundamental to how Christians understand salvation. Heroes help us discern the good, fight for what’s right, define identity, execute justice, spark revolution, and save lives.

Rawle enters the Gospel story to tell quite a different victory story—one obtained through humility, obedience to the cross, and an empty tomb. How does Jesus redefine what it means to be a hero?

The Leader Guide contains everything needed to guide a group through the six-week study, including session plans and discussion questions, as well as multiple format options.

Dec 19, 2017

Informazioni sull'autore

Matt Rawle is Lead Pastor at Asbury United Methodist Church in Bossier City, Louisiana. Matt is an international speaker who loves to tell an old story in a new way, especially at the intersection of pop culture and the church. He is the author of a new series of books titled The Pop in Culture Series. The series includes The Faith of a Mockingbird, Hollywood Jesus, The Salvation of Doctor Who, The Redemption of Scrooge, What Makes a Hero?, and The Gift of the Nutcracker.

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What Makes a Hero? Leader Guide - Matt Rawle

Session One



Lesson Aim

To differentiate between good and evil by drawing upon Scripture, reason, tradition, and experience and to choose what is good by imitating Jesus.

Session Themes

•To examine pop culture examples that resonate with our longing to see good triumph over evil.

•To explore those longings theologically in light of Christian claims about God.

•To recognize and understand the difference between good and evil.

•To commit to acts of justice and grow in fellowship with God by following Jesus in daily life.

•To grow in confidence that good will win out in the end.

•To live today in light of that confidence.

Hero Focus: Batman

In each chapter, Matt Rawle cites multiple hero stories to illustrate important biblical and theological concepts. In this chapter, you may want to focus your group on the example of Batman when exploring good and evil. Batman first appeared in 1939 in Detective Comics #2 and was created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger. Batman is the secret identity of Bruce Wayne, a wealthy American playboy, philanthropist, and owner of Wayne Enterprises. Batman does not possess supernatural abilities, but rather utilizes stealth, combat training, a keen intellect, and technological wizardry to thwart crime. His most notable enemies include Joker, Riddler, Two-Face, Catwoman, and Poison Ivy. Visit Wikipedia on the Internet and read the entry for Batman if you would like more information prior to your gathering.

Key Scripture

Be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us.

Ephesians 5:1-2

Theological Focus

Jesus’ story is both familiar and completely separate from us. His life, suffering, death, and resurrection mirror our own hero stories in many ways, but Jesus’ story is much different. Jesus is the Messiah. It’s not that Jesus is better, or stronger, or quicker, or wittier than the rest of us. Jesus is us, and at the same time he is altogether different. When we look to Jesus’ story we find a common thread, but we also find that the thread is woven into a subversive, upside-down revelation of God’s kingdom. Jesus is a new kind of hero.

(Rawle, page 20)


Welcome the group to the study. Introduce yourself and learn the names of all group participants if you do not already know everyone. Allow time for group members to become acquainted.

In the first session, provide a basic overview of the book resource and the primary themes found within. Share with the group that each session will include discussion, prayer, a video where you will hear from Matt Rawle, a closer look at the book, and an examination of Scripture in light of the theme. Tell the group that you will also look for ways to apply what you have learned and to challenge one another to live in light of the good news revealed in Jesus.

Opening Prayer

God Almighty, you are good. The world you have created is good. Help us today to learn how better to discern good from evil and to commit ourselves to justice, mercy, and walking humbly with you. Amen.

Conversation Starter


The first chapter in our book explores good, evil, and God. Good and evil are thematically important in many superhero stories, like Batman. How do we discern the difference between good and evil? Where is God at work when we face trial and hardship? How does Jesus invite us into a life with God where we are empowered to do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with God? In our world discerning good from evil is not always easy, and choosing what is good can be very difficult. Today we will discuss how following Jesus helps us align ourselves with God’s work in the

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