Why I Have No Interest In Seeing Mel Gibson's
The Passion of the Christ.
The first and foremost reason is Mel Gibson's stated intent to make his film as graphically shocking as he possibly could. He said on Fox's Oreilly Factor that he wanted to "push the audience to the edge". He is essentially inviting everyone to be close witnesses to a brutal and bloody atrocity, not unlike hawking front row tickets to a gladiatorial spectacle in the Coliseum. Will it draw crowds? Undoubtedly, just like any bloody crime or accident draws those with a prurient and morbid curiosity. It is, in effect, being marketed as an obscenity of violence and gore specifically crafted to shock and appall, and daring everyone to view it.
In one interview I saw, it was said by someone that viewed the movie that it presented the truth not found in scripture. Is that to say the Bible was somehow negligent and lacking in truth? I think it is notable indeed that the Gospel accounts of the crucifixion did not find this kind of bloodthirsty sensationalism appropriate. I already fully understand what Christ endured, and that it was the darkest moment in human experience, so I have no need to let Mel Gibson shock me with his presentation of obscenely gruesome and graphic details.
Second, this is not just a visual presentation of the biblical account. A Roman Catholic, Mel Gibson also used artistic license as a director, and the alleged revelations to Catholic stigmatic and visionary Anne Catherine Emmerich, to one degree or another, in determining the content of his film. As a result, the film depicts events that are not in scripture. One example: in the opening scene of the movie, Jesus crushes with His heal the head of a serpent that comes out from under Satan's cloak (an allusion to Genesis 3:15), after Satan taunts Him before His arrest in the garden of Gethsemane. Another example is Mary cleaning up the spilled blood of her son (See The Passion of Mel Gibson at Christianity Today). Curiously, an event that is described in scripture is omitted in the film, that being when Jesus identifies Himself in Gethsemane by saying "I am he", those who came to arrest Him all fell backwards (John 18:4-6).
I would venture to say that Emmerich's The Dolorous Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ cannot be found in most Christian (read Protestant) bookstores, precisely because of its dubious origin and questionable account. Even Catholic authorities suspect that works attributed to her may have been fabricated to some degree, according to Colin Donovan at EWTN. Yet, prominent Protestants are embracing and promoting this film as an appropriate and powerful witnessing tool, more or less ignoring its negative aspects. Most Protestants would probably have no interest in reading Emmerich at all, but put it on the big screen and Protestants buyout theater seats in advance in the multiple thousands. Needless to say, Catholics are pleasantly surprised, though maybe somewhat puzzled at the overwhelming Evangelical Protestant endorsement of what is a profoundly Catholic production. It is also worth noting that Gibson's film is largely a presentation of the 5 Sorrowful Mysteries of the Catholic Rosary, something the average Catholic will recognize, but the average Protestant will likely be ignorant of.
So from what I do know of the film, some of which I have not mentioned, I believe the emphasis and content of The Passion of the Christ is quite unacceptable, and so I have no desire to see it at all. Also, if only Protestants really knew their Bible prophecy, and were still aware of how and why they became Protestants in the first place, there would not be the lemming-like interest in seeing this very Catholic film.
What Does the Word VATICAN Mean?
Who Crucified Jesus Christ?
Mel Gibson's movie The Passion of the Christ has also generated a storm of controversy over its portrayal of the Jewish leaders as being responsible for Christ's crucifixion, thereby giving his film a distinct anti-Semitic theme. Due to the pressure of the controversy, the final version of the film is said to have been altered to remove the subtitle when the Jewish crowd before Pilate said "His blood be on us, and on our children" (Matt. 27:25), though the words are still spoken in Aramaic.
So did the Jews crucify Christ? The Bible does address this issue clearly and directly:
Mat 21:38 But when the husbandmen saw the son, they said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and let us seize on his inheritance.
Mat 21:39 And they caught him, and cast him out of the vineyard, and slew him.
Mat 21:45 And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard his parables, they perceived that he spake of them.
Mat 26:3 Then assembled together the chief priests, and the scribes, and the elders of the people, unto the palace of the high priest, who was called Caiaphas,
Mat 26:4 And consulted that they might take Jesus by subtlety, and kill him.
John 5:16 And therefore did the Jews persecute Jesus, and sought to slay him, because he had done these things on the sabbath day.
John 5:17 But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.
John 5:18 Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.
John 7:1 After these things Jesus walked in Galilee: for he would not walk in Jewry, because the Jews sought to kill him.
Acts 2:22 Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know:
Acts 2:23 Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:
Acts 2:36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.
Acts 4:10 Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole.
1 Th 2:14 For ye, brethren, became followers of the churches of God which in Judaea are in Christ Jesus: for ye also have suffered like things of your own countrymen, even as they have of the Jews:
1 Th 2:15 Who both killed the Lord Jesus, and their own prophets, and have persecuted us; and they please not God, and are contrary to all men:
1 Th 2:16 Forbidding us to speak to the Gentiles that they might be saved, to fill up their sins alway: for the wrath is come upon them to the uttermost.