What Makes a Hero?
We hear the word hero a lot in our culture, but do we really know what it means? We seem to have a lot of celebrities but very few heroes. Historian Daniel Boorstin compared the two this way: “Celebrities are people who make news, but heroes are people who make history. Time makes heroes but dissolves celebrities.”
A hero is someone who does something selfless, something sacrificial. A hero is someone who puts the needs of another above his or her own. Sometimes heroes are known in their lifetime for their achievements, and sometimes we call them heroes after they’re gone. In that case, we sometimes call them unsung heroes because we didn’t realize how heroic they were until time had passed.
One unsung hero from the New Testament is Andrew, Peter’s brother. Andrew didn’t get a lot of ink in the New Testament, but what we do read about him is significant. Andrew is primarily known as the guy who brought others to Jesus. In fact, when he discovered that Jesus was the long-awaited Messiah of Israel, he went and found his brother and brought him to the Lord.
How easily Andrew could have kept this to himself and said, “I don’t want Peter to get in here. He probably would try to take over the whole operation.” Instead, Andrew brought him to Jesus. In fact, every time we read about Andrew, he is bringing someone to the Lord.
We might say that Andrew is the patron saint of unsung heroes, the kind of people who are willing to do what needs to be done and fly under the radar. They just want God to get the glory. And here is the thing we need to remember: If we had more Andrews, we probably would have more Simon Peters.