If he can wield the Hammer, he can keep the Stone. ~ Thor
In the movie, Avengers: Age of Ultron, the superheroes have had a few drinks and they decide to try their hand at lifting Thor’s Hammer. Only Captain America is able to budge it…
Tony Stark: It’s biometrics, right? Like a security code? “Whoever is carrying Thor’s fingerprints” is, I think, the literal translation.
Thor: Yes, well that’s a very, very interesting theory. I have a simpler one: You are not worthy.
Only those worthy—not strong or clever or powerful—can lift and wield the Hammer that makes them rulers of Asgard. (This scene reminds me of The Sword and the Stone where Arthur is the only one who can remove the Sword from the Stone and, therefore, is the rightful king.) At the end of the movie (spoiler alert), the Vision is able to lift the Hammer with ease pointing to his worthiness to wield it and, potentially, rule Asgard…
I don’t want to kill Ultron. He’s unique… and he’s in pain. But that pain will roll over the Earth. So he must be destroyed: every form he’s built, every trace of his presence on the ‘net. We have to act now, and not one of us can do it without the others. Maybe I am a monster. I don’t think I’d know if I were one. I’m not what you are and not what you intended. So there may be no way to make you trust me.
[hands Thor his hammer] ~ The Vision
Having all failed at lifting the Hammer, the Vision inadvertently shows them that he can be trusted by this simple act. Wonderful set-up and execution of this plot line. But we’re not here to talk plot-lines, we’re here to discuss how this movie and, specifically, this plot line relates to Christianity.
The Vision is very obviously a Christ figure. He even repeats Christ’s line when the other superheroes ask who he is, “I AM.” (There is an interesting article about the Vision’s Christ-likeness HERE.) He is the only one, other than Thor, who is worthy of wielding the Hammer. He is also the one that the Avengers need if they are going to destroy Ultron (an anti-Christ figure, who uses much biblical symbolism but in ways that are twisted and corrupt and, well, anti-Christ who was for love and grace and mercy and life).
The Vision is born miraculously because of the “evil” (Ultron) that has entered the world through “man’s” (Iron Man) disobedience. But, the Vision has not come to judge or condemn “man” for his errors, but to be man and through becoming man to save man from themselves.
Ultron: Stark asked for a savior, and settled for a slave.
The Vision: I suppose we’re both disappointments.
Ultron: [laughs] I suppose we are.
The Vision: Humans are odd. They think order and chaos are somehow opposites and try to control what won’t be. But there is grace in their failings. I think you missed that.
Ultron: They’re doomed!
The Vision: Yes… but a thing isn’t beautiful because it lasts. It is a privilege to be among them.
Ultron: You’re unbelievably naïve.
The Vision: Well, I was born yesterday.
Jesus, like the Vision, came into this world not to condemn us for our errors but to save us. To become one of us so that he could help us to overcome the evil in the world by trusting in and working with Him…
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. ~ John 3:16-17 (NIV)
Jesus is worthy of wielding the Hammer and, therefore, worthy of our trust and our following.
If you enjoy finding faith in fandom, please consider pre-ordering Finding Unauthorized Faith in Harry Potter: Devotions From the Wizarding World in either paperback or ebook (Kindle, Nook, iTunes). Books will be shipped/sent on December 10th 2015 (in plenty of time for Christmas).