by Roger Thomas

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True Heroes (13 of 20)
Series: Forever Living in a Whatever World
Roger Thomas
Philippians 2:19-30

Introduction: One of the benefits of 9-11 (if you can dare call anything that happened that day a benefit) is our new appreciation for heroes. There were many. Fire fighters and police officers left a lasting image of courage and heroism. Men and women marched into harm's way knowing that they might not walk out again.

None more typifies the heroes of 9-11 than the passengers of United Flight 93. Todd Beamer is probably the best known. On that Tuesday morning in 2001, he was on a business trip. When Todd realized what was happening aboard Flight 93, he picked up the airfone. He told the operator the situation. He asked her to call his wife Lisa and tell her he loved her. After Todd prayed the Lord's Prayer, the GTE operator heard a commotion. She then heard Todd say, "Are you ready, guys? Let's roll!" With that, the phone went dead.

The terrorists who had commandeered the plane intended to fly it into the capital building in Washington. Todd and the other passengers had a different idea. Within minutes, Flight 93 nosedived into a rural field 80 miles southeast of Pittsburgh, leaving a crater 40 feet deep. The plane disintegrated on impact. All on board died. Some died in an attempt to kill the innocent. Others died sacrificing themselves to save others. That's a hero!

You can tell a lot about people by their heroes. Some imagine super-heroes who possess powers or qualities they wish they had. Others turn the rich and famous into heroes because they envy their lives of luxury and power. Churches have heroes, too. The kinds of people we talk about and honor goes a long way toward forming the heroes and role models of the next generation. That's important.

On the surface, our passage may seem like an irrelevant detour from the main message of Philippians. Paul has been challenging his friends to turn away from the temptatio ...

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