By Keith Short
When our two boys were growing up, we encouraged them to read. There was a little elementary school down the road from us, and we made arrangements with the school to take their discarded books. Some of the books were interesting to our kids, while others, well, they were just pushed aside.
As a young person, my fascination with reading began with comic books. Many young people grew up digging in to these inspiring stories along with educational books.
If you remember reading comic books, there was often an ad in the back. I remember reading one particular ad many times and dreaming that it could be me: there was a picture of a man who had muscles on top of muscles. His name was Charles Atlas. I wanted to be like him because if anyone bullied me, all I would have to do is flex my muscles and they would run!
The ad stated that no matter who you were, you could quickly—with emphasis on quickly—turn into being just like Mr. Atlas. The price, only $4.95! Oh yes it was a lot of money for a boy to spend, but just imagine, in a short period of time, I would be mistaken for Mr. Atlas. All of my friends and even my enemies would stand up and take notice. The best part of my dream was that if anyone slapped me, it was over for them. I would simply flex, and then they would say, “Here is the man!”
I’m not really sure if Jesus looked like Mr. Atlas. Think about all of the things they did to him before he was crucified—the crown of thorns, even slapping him in his face. Pilate said, “Here is the man!” God Almighty sent Jesus to diligently obey in order to be “the man” who could step in and rescue all of us from our weak and sinful condition. He is the Messianic Priest-King!
Keith Short is the preaching minister of Community Christian Church in London, Kentucky. He and his wife, Aleta, have been married for 44 years and have two married sons and one granddaughter.