The Pastor’s Pen: June 2, 2019

Many viewers are following the end of the series, Game of Thrones. For the many Thrones fanatics, including yours truly, the last season and the series finale did not end as anticipated. Daenerys Targaryen, the blonde queen, and champion of the poor became hypnotized by power and set her dragon to destroy King’s Landing, killing every man, woman, and child.  This is a stunning example of what Lord Acton stated in the late 19th century, “Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

Then, Jon Snow, the presumptive heir to the Iron Throne, who died and was brought back to life earlier in the series, and who had fallen in love with Daenerys, presumably before she went  insane, killed her to prevent her from ascending to the throne and possibly being worse than all the preceding monarchs. If you are not a Thrones devotee, everything I just said was gibberish or as confusing as one of 45’s midnight tweets. However, whether one liked the conclusion of the series or not, over the eight years there were insights that all of us Thrones junkies or not ought to take to heart.

 From beginning to end, all the characters and all the plots focused on the quest for the Iron Throne. We Christian people can learn that in this era of endless multitasking, we ought all have one purpose and that is to work toward the day when Christ will reign King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

Throughout the “Game of Thrones” series, one of the most desirable positions was to be the “Hand of the King,” the monarch’s primary advisor and trusted confidant. In our Christian tradition, the early Christian theologians could not define what the Resurrection really meant, so they turned to the concept of the Trinity that Jesus, whatever else we might say about Him, was the Hand of the Father, co-equal and co-eternal. John put it this way, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God,” John 1:1.

Finally, the series carried a consistent theme that the reverence of kingship was called “bending the knee,” a term that described how all subjects should recognize monarchial power.

Americans are fond of seeing the nation’s soul as defined by rugged individualism. Yet, we must never forget that the key to successful living is bowing and bending our knee to God.  The Apostle Paul put it this way, “At the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father,” Philippians 2:10.  Bending our knee to God is much more than a game; it is the way to salvation.