In bringing many sons and daughters to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through what he suffered.Hebrews 2:10
And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.Hebrews 12:1,2
Who is the hero of the Bible story? It’s a question that you need to ask whenever you open the Bible. There seem to be a lot of different answers. Is David the hero as he faces down Goliath? Is Daniel the hero as he stands up to power and to lions in the den? Are Abraham, Moses, Samuel, Solomon, Elijah, Job, Ruth, Jeremiah all heroes?
Taken on face value, there are a huge variety of human heroes throughout the Bible’s story. But a close look at each of their stories reveals something deeper. They are not really the hero. God is.
David confronts Goliath, but his trust is in God to honour his name and his people. That’s why David can shrug off the armour and go out to battle with just his slingshot. Daniel stands up to the power of the king of Babylon because he knows there is a greater king to whom he gives allegiance. And that same king can stop the mouths of lions if necessary.
Again and again throughout the Bible we see human ‘heroes’ trusting in the true hero. Once we turn to the New Testament we see that true hero in full focus in Jesus of Nazareth.
The writer of the Hebrews calls Jesus ‘the pioneer and perfecter of faith’. He is the perfect one who is the true hero of the story. He is the knight in shining armour. He is the brave warrior facing down evil. He is the one who completes the quest and saves the land. He is the hero.
Yet, he is also a hero who calls us to follow. He is the perfecter of faith, according to Hebrews, but also the pioneer. He sets the path and has walked it perfectly before us. He is the trailblazer of true faith in God. And he calls us to walk with him through our own story of trust in God.
Jesus is the true hero. But he calls us to be heroes in the places God has called us, as we trust in him the hero above all. As he has pioneered the heroic way, so he calls us to walk the way of the hero too. We don’t have the same battles to fight as he did. But we have our own. And we will overcome and conquer by putting ourselves in his hand as we walk the quest that God has given to us. We too can be heroic, as we walk the path and imitate in trust the true hero of Christ.