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Thursday, January 8, 2015

Ravagers and Repentance

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Ravagers. We don't always think good things when we hear this word. Certainly, the Ravagers in the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) are not seen in a good light by very many. They steal, kill, and make comments about eating people (or at least Yondu does). They are all about living on the move, making money in immoral missions, and drinking alcohol.

But at one point, they did something...good. They formed an alliance with the team that would come to be known as the Guardians of the Galaxy and even with the Nova Corp to protect a planet from a terrorist force led by a Kree named Ronan the Accuser.

This is an act we refer to as repentance. Admittedly, this repentance seems short lived as they soon turn their weapons on the Guardians. Repentance is a Greek military term for turning around. Going 180 degrees in the other direction.

John the Baptist taught this in preparation for the coming of Jesus. Repent, for the kingdom of God is at hand. Mark 1 tells us that he came "preaching a baptism of repentance". This was all "for the forgiveness of sins".

All of the Guardians showed major growth over the movie. This included fighting for people who would prefer they be thrown in jail, revealing various forms of pain to us, and giving something valuable into the hands of law enforcement.

But repentance shows a preparation for forgiveness. It shows you are willing to change by doing the change, not by making empty words. This is not always fun. It often means fighting our own desires and appetites. I find that it is easy to be mad at myself when I keep falling off the horse. When I find myself failing at something regularly I get frustrated with myself. Don't you?

Let us learn from Batman Begins: "Why do we fall? So we can learn to pick ourselves up again."

But what good does this do us? In both John 1 and Mark 1 we learn that John the Baptist was simply preparing the way for Jesus ministry. And that is one of the reasons we repent. To enjoy the presence of God. My only advice for repentance? Keep getting back up. Don't give up because it is hard!

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