In the action-packed, laugh-filled blockbuster, The Avengers, Loki, a god-like being from Asgard, comes to earth with plans to take over. He wants to rule…he needs to rule. Rather than focus on all the psychological reasons why he needs this, or why he is equally unfit for the task, I want to hone in on his interesting statement to mankind.
“Kneel before me. I said… KNEEL! Is not this simpler? Is this not your natural state? It’s the unspoken truth of humanity that you crave subjugation. … You were made to be ruled. In the end, you will always kneel.”
It sounds a little harsh, I’ll grant you, but there is actually truth in what he says. Man was made to kneel. It is our natural state. We absolutely were made to be ruled and yes, in the end, we will always kneel. It sounds weak and unappealing, especially from the mouth of some twisted,narcissistic, sadistic ruler who forces himself and the concept on you. Loki was right about our nature. He was wrong about who we will kneel to.
While we were made to kneel, we weren’t made to kneel to just anyone. We were made to kneel to the Lord of Lord and King of Kings, the God of all creation—and to Him alone. When we kneel to anything or anyone else, it’s called idolatry and it angers God and it goes badly for us.
It’s the first of the Ten Commandments, that we worship God and God alone. In Exodus 20 He says, “You shall have no other gods before me. …You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God.” He warns that “the sorrows of those who run after another god shall multiply,” and that other gods “cannot save [anyone] in the time of their trouble.”
The problem is that, Loki is right, we were made to worship. We will always worship something. In a perfect world, we worship the Lord as we were intended to do. However, it’s not a perfect world and so man is easily drawn away and tempted to bow down to other things. Those who do not know God are “enslaved to those that by nature are not gods.” Did you catch that? Those who don’t know God are enslaved. They are kneeling to either people or things that aren’t gods, whether or not they even know it. They have to. They are a slave. For those who do know God, it’s still a daily (momentary even) choice to ensure that nothing usurps God in our hearts, minds and souls; that nothing and/or no one gets our worship but God alone.
Whether we worship God or something else (including ourselves), whether we realize we worship anything at all, Loki got it right that we were made to be ruled. He also got it right when he foretold, “In the end, you will always kneel.” The Bible says the same thing…and the Bible goes a step further and says who we will kneel to in the end!
For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat. It is written:
“‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, ‘every knee will bow before me; every tongue will acknowledge God.’”
So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.
In the end, we will all kneel before God. When we do—when we are before the Lord of Lord, King of Kings, the God of all creation—at that moment (if not before) we will realize with startling clarity and shame just how utterly inconsequential and pathetic all the other things we worshiped really were.
If you’ve seen The Avengers, you will probably agree that one of the best scenes of the movie (if not the best) was when the Hulk in all his hugeness positively thrashed Loki around like a rag doll. Loki had just been spouting off how superior he was, how he should be worshipped like a god. Hulk looked at Loki like one who had tired of an ant and after he mercilessly (and hilariously) flung him about, Hulk just kind of shrugs and snorts out with contempt, “Puny god” and walks away, as if to say Loki is so far beneath him as to be laughable.
Don’t miss the parallels! We have an enemy who is doing all he can to get us to kneel to him. He wants our worship; he’ll settle for our subjugation. Anytime we kneel to anything other than God, our enemy takes it for himself. He may seem big, he may speak of power…but in the end, he’s going to get a thrashing. In the end, we will look at him (and all of his many disguises…all the things we were tempted to worship) and we will say, “Puny god.” Let us not wait till then to kneel before the Lord, our God, our Maker. Give him today the praise and honor that is due Him, lest you be found serving a puny god with the end comes.
Questions for Discussion:
- How did you respond to (or feel about) Loki’s speech? Does it ring true or does it make you angry to hear that you were made to be ruled?
- If you are honest with yourself, what are the things you are tempted to worship (or put your trust, hope and/or joy in? (If you aren’t sure, a great indicator is to check your schedule and your wallet—you’ll spend your time and your money on your idols.)
- Have you ever been disappointed when your false god failed to save you?
- The Psalmist writes that “the sorrows of those who run after another god shall multiply,”—has that ever happened in your life? Have you ever put someone or something on a pedestal that shouldn’t have been on one…and been sorry for it?
- Have you chosen to kneel now to the One you will surely kneel before in the end?
-By Stacey Tuttle-
Click here for a compilation of funny and/or meaningful quotes from The Avengers.