Thursday, March 18, 2010
Did Jonah Have a Six-Pack?
I was browsing the children's department at my local Christian bookstore when I saw something that took me by surprise. It was Jonah, clearly visible through the plastic shield of a boxed set, which included both a big fish and a tiny boat. But it wasn't Jonah that surprised me, it was the size of his bulging biceps.
That's not all. I found Noah, looking all buff and very young. David appeared clad in a purple jumpsuit that showed off his bulging muscles. Moses sported an Egyptian headdress, sword and shield. Samson, with his mane of blond hair, looked like Thor, the Norse God of Thunder.
"What's going on here?" I wondered.
Turns out, the "Almighty Heroes" are the brainchild of Don Levine, the creator of G. I. Joe. He developed them a few years ago with the hope that children would develop an interest in the characters and message of scripture.
I'm all for that. It's admirable that this toy making legend would put so much work into a toy that brings scripture to life. And little boys do like to play heroes. However, I'm bothered by the visual message that the muscles make the man. Didn't our heroes, of all ages and (I assume) body types, draw their strength from the Lord?
Sure gives new meaning to Deuteronomy 6:5:
Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.