Do you have a favourite super hero?
Mine's Batman. Not the batman of recent movies, but the Batman I used to watch on TV when I was a kid. I especially loved the Batmobile and the Batcave, complete with fireman's pole. When I was in Year 1, I even had a Batman outfit. I got it for Christmas along with an official batman utility belt complete with bat-torch, bat-a-rang (boomerang), bat-rope, bat-cuffs and a bat signal flash (torch). I loved gallivanting around the neighbourhood as the Caped Crusader, quelling evil wherever I should find it.
Not so long ago, I came across a story about another super hero: Thor. The story takes place when Thor visits the land of the giants. Upon his arrival, Thor found the giants were engaged in various contests of strength. They asked him if he would like to take part in their games. Thor said yes. So they proposed three tests of strength for him.
First, Thor was asked to drink all the liquid in a large two handed drinking bowl. He tried to drink as much as he could. But only a tiny portion of the liquid in the bowl disappeared. Finally, Thor put the bowl down and admitted defeat. To him the giants seemed sympathetic - and they proposed something a bit easier for his second test.
A black cat was walking by and Thor was instructed to lift it up. Thor grabbed hold of the feline, thinking it should be easy to carry. He strained and tugged as hard as he could but he couldn't even begin to budge the cat.
By now the giants were becoming amused at Thor's predicament. "You are supposed to be strong", they said, "but it seems you are not. Well, we will give you something even easier for your third test."
So for the third test the giants challenged Thor to a wrestle with an old woman. With every bit of strength that Thor could muster he grabbed hold of the old woman, but all his pushing and pulling and twisting was in vain. He simply could not meet the challenge.
As Thor, humbled and dejected, left the giants to head back home, one of them went with him for a part of the way and told him that there was magic in the contests. "The cup contained the sea," he said, "and who can drink that? The cat was all the evil in the world, and who is able to lift that up and take it away? And the old woman was time, and who is able to contend with her?"
There is One who can.
Jesus drank the cup of suffering no one else could drink (John 18:11; Mark 10:38).
He carried every shred of sin and evil in his body on the cross (1 Peter 2:24).
And as a result, the Creator of time is able to bring us time-bound mortals to eternity (John 10:10).