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A Freeper Review of The Passion of Christ
Vanity | 2/21/04 | John Fields

Posted on 02/21/2004 3:50:43 PM PST by jonboy

I'm not sure where to start. I'm a fellow Freeper who also happens to be minister. I was invited today to see a screening of the Passion of the Christ at our local theater. I have been fascinated, and you might even be able to say obsessed with this movie ever since I heard about it a few months ago and first saw the trailer (I cried every time I saw it).

Given that I have watched and listened to several interviews and read several news stories about this movie I was as prepared as I thought I could be to watch it. I HAVE NEVER BEEN THROUGH ANYTHING LIKE THIS MOVIE! I sobbed, I throbbed, my Kleenex became a fairly useless mess that occupied the hand not tightly gripping the seat. IT WAS HARD TO WATCH. The cruelty was overwhelming, but approximated what we have a glimpse from in scripture. The violence and horror of what was done to Him nearly overwhelming, but not gratuitous as some have claimed.

As to the charges of anti-semitism, I can understand how a Jew who does not believe that Jesus is their Messiah would be frightened by this film. However, it was NOT anti-semitic. I could just as easily be moved to be against Italians for what the Romans did as I could be against the Jews. If one were inspired to hate the perpetrators if this event, they would be anti-Christian, anti-Semitic, anti-Arab, anti-Japanese, and anti-__________ (fill in your own blanks). I was filled with the grim overwhelming knowledge of my own guilt as much as anything else. As I watched Him writhing in pain, the ribs virtually exposed from the beating that He had taken, as I watched His shoulder ripped out of socket as they stretched his hand to make it to the pre-drilled nail hole, as I watched the blood flowing and the breath ripped from His body from the pain, one thing entered into my mind above all else. I PUT HIM THERE! He could have come down, He could have called in excess of ten-thousand angels. He could have stopped that horrible mockery and evil in its tracks by coming down off of that cross, healing His own wounds, and then saying go to it boys as He releases the angels to take care of business. BUT HE DIDN'T. I am in awe.

I admit that I has moments when I felt like ripping the Jewish and Roman perpetrators apart. How dare they laugh in the face of such agony! How dare they spit on Him! How dare they stand in pompous, arrogant, self-righteous judgment of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords (how dare MYSELF go on sinning after what He did for me)! But as the High Priest is walking away from making fun and mocking. He hears Jesus softly say, taking up precious breath, "Father forgive them, they don't know what they are doing." The High Priest pauses in uncomfortable silence, then walks on. Later, after Jesus has died and the earthquake has damaged the temple and they are very aware that they have done something terribly wrong the High Priest is seen crying out and holding his face in grief and horror.

This movie was about love and forgiveness and about our sin and what God and His Son did together about that sin. It is about the horrible things that men do to their fellow men which can still be forgiven if they will but repent. Some of the Jews were depraved and some were compassionate. Some of the Romans were depraved, and some of them were inclined towards compassion. Anti-Jewish? NO WAY! Besides, the early church was exlusively Jewish. The movie is not about Mel Gibson having some kind of point to prove to anyone, let alone the Jews. It was Mel's passion, a labor of love. Will it profit Him? Unbelievably! Did he do it for the money, not a chance.

Were there any liberties taken with the scripture? Maybe a few. Poetic/artistic license was taken to a degree. There were some scenes with Judas that were extra Biblical, but imaginable. Surprisingly, he was shown as a somewhat sympathetic character, which is something I've felt to a degree for him. I doubt that he was a completely depraved man, he just wanted to speed things along so that Jesus would have to rise to the throne and have to take His true place. When he realized he had been horribly mis-lead he admitted guilt but then went out and killed himself. There was a scene in which the unrepentant thief had his eyes pecked out by a crow. I thought that didn't gel well with the theme of forgiveness and should have been left out. It seemed to represent Divine retribution since the thief had just been blaspheming Jesus. But the cross wasn't about retribution, that will come later at Judgment, it was about mercy.

As to this movie being appropriate for children? That's a hard call. I think it would be best if conscientous parents screened it for themselves first. It is hard enough for mature adults to stomach. However, there is something to be said for exposing young tender hearts to the truth of what He did. Maybe knowing what He did at a younger age would lead to more mature Christians later. Again, it's an individual call.

Is this movie Catholic? Yes and no. Those who see the relationship between Jesus and Mary who are Catholic will likely see Mary as divine. Those of us who believe that Mary was a mere woman who was blessed enough to have been chosen to be the mother of the Christ will see the relationship between a mother and her Son. THIS MOVIE IS FOR ALL!!! I can wholeheartedly recommend this movie to others for personal devotion or to touch the hearts of those who are lost. I believe very much that it will be a culturally defining movie and that it will break most IF NOT ALL of the box office records both nationally and world-wide. The Lord will not be silenced. I truly feel He has spoken through this movie. Maybe its His way of saying WAKE UP before He comes again. If it is, this Christian is awake (wiping away tears).

TOPICS: Current Events
KEYWORDS: catholiclist; christianlist
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To: savedbygrace
I hope this sheds a little light on your question. I found this on an apologetic's page.

1) The "Apocrypha" Perhaps the clearest proofs of this doctrine exist in the books known to Protestants as the "Apocrypha" (called "Deutero-canonical" by Catholics), which Protestants removed from the Bible (the first time this had happened in the history of Christianity). In 2 Maccabees 15:11-16 Jeremiah the prophet prays for the Jews centuries after his death (compare Jer 15:1), along with the deceased high priest Onias. Likewise, Tobit 12:1-22 (especially 12,15) presents Raphael the angel as one of the "seven holy angels, which present the prayers of the saints." Tobit 12:15 is apparently referred to in Rev 5:8 and 8:3-4, which speak of the "prayers of the saints" being offered to God, and in Rev 1:4, which mentions the "seven Spirits." There is plenty of proof, however, in Protestant Bibles, too:

2) Revelation 1:4 "John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace {be} unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne." {cf. Rev 3:1; 4:5; 5:6}

The seven angels participate in the giving of "grace" and "peace" by God, a principle anathema to Protestants. Some Protestant commentators, aware of a certain difficulty here for their position, seek to redefine the "seven Spirits" as the Holy Spirit, but a check with the cross-references above (inc. Tobit) make this implausible. Other commentators accept these spirits as the seven archangels of Jewish angelology, as indeed they appear to be.

3) Revelation 5:8 and 8:3-4 "And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four {and} twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints."

"And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer {it} with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. (4) And the smoke of the incense, {which came} with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel's hand."

The saints (the 24 elders are usually regarded as dead Christians) and angels lay the prayers of the Christians on earth at the feet of God; that is, they are praying for them and acting as intercessory intermediaries. Thus, the propriety of invoking them logically follows from the plain fact of their intercession. This is identical to the Catholic teaching. Protestant commentaries scramble to come up with some alternate version of what is taking place here, straining at gnats, rationalizing, and splitting hairs. It is amusing to find that often these Protestant works will vehemently maintain that the Catholic view is definitely not taught in a particular Bible verse, while rarely offering a plausible or coherent alternate explanation!


4) Revelation 6:9-10 "And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: (10) And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?" {cf. Zech 1:12}

These dead Christian martyrs are uttering what are known as "imprecatory prayers," pleas for God's judgment of the wicked and vindication of the righteous (e.g., see Ps 35;69;79;109;139; Jer 11:18 ff.; 15:15 ff.; 18:19 ff.; Jesus in Mt 26:53). Thus, dead saints are praying for Christians on earth, and, by logical extension, can be asked for prayers. They are aware of earthly events (Heb 12:1), and are more alive, unfathomably more righteous (Jas 5:16), and obviously closer to God than we are.


5) Matthew 18:10 "Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven."

The notion that every person has their own guardian angel, who has direct access to God, is strongly implied. If Jesus said He could have asked for the assistance of an angel (Mt 26:53) - and He certainly would not have been worshiping them in so doing - then we, who need their help infinitely more than He, can do the same without necessarily engaging in idolatry (anything can become an idol if we let it). Nor will it do for Protestants to equate the Intercession of the Saints with the communication with evil spirits by means of a medium or other occultic techniques. This is nonsense. The Communion of the Saints is nothing more than the recognition that saints after death (and angels) are more alive than us, aware of happenings on earth, desirous of aiding us, and able to be asked for help and to assist us with their prayer and intercession.

6) Dead Saints Appear on Earth to Interact With Men

Not only does God not want a prohibition of contact between saints in heaven and on earth, but He goes so far as to allow, on several occasions as recorded in the Bible, dead saints to return to earth for this very purpose! These are instances accepted by Protestants, but their implications are only fully developed within Catholicism. We find, for example, Moses and Elijah appearing on the Mount of Transfiguration to talk to Jesus, while Peter, James, and John were present (Mt 17:1-3 / Mk 9:4 / Lk 9:30-31).


Taken from here:

There's more here:

321 posted on 02/22/2004 1:16:41 AM PST by Jordan Vandenberg
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To: savedbygrace; padfoot_lover; Clintons a commie
I'd like to try and add something here about the Catholic definition of mother of God, and also necromancy.

Mary is not divine. She says so herself in the Scriptures. Mary gave physical birth to Jesus Who IS God.

Mary gave birth to Jesus Christ, she is His mother, Jesus is LORD and God, the Second Person of the Trinity. Mary did not "create" God, rather, through the Power of the Holy Spirit Jesus was conceived in the womb of the Virgin.

"The Word was made Flesh" means that God took on human nature--at conception. To say that Mary is the Mother of God we are acknowledging that God gave Mary the unique gift of carrying within her womb Jesus-God.

Mary had two very human parents, she acknowledges to the angel that she is the handmaid of the LORD, a servant, of lowly estate.

After her greeting and exchange with Elizabeth, Mary says:

"My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for He has regarded the low estate of His handmaiden. For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed; for He who Is mighty has done great things for me, and Holy Is His Name. and His Mercy is on those who fear Him from generation to generation..."

It is clear in Scripture that Mary knows God and she clearly knows it is not her. Mary even acknowledges she was in need of being saved. She was saved like all of humanity by the Passion of her own Divine Son. Catholics believe that Mary was saved "in advance" or at conception, that through a unique Gift, God applied the Merits of Christ's Passion and Resurrection to Mary at her conception, preserving her from any and all sin, that is the basic definition of the Immaculate Conception. Not through any merit of her own, but that Almighty God wanted the Sinless Lamb to be born of a sinless Mother, this is the inverse of "nothing impure shall enter heaven. " Since God will not allow anything impure to enter heaven, why would He allow anything impure to enter His Eternal Son.

It is God WHO created Mary to be a worthy bearer of His only Begotten Son.

Necromancy is a special mode of divination by the evocation of the dead, which is the seeking after knowledge of future or hidden things by inadequate means. Catholics never do that.

322 posted on 02/22/2004 1:36:35 AM PST by (The Missing Key of the Pro-Life Movement is at
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To: GirlShortstop
PING to 322
323 posted on 02/22/2004 1:43:04 AM PST by (The Missing Key of the Pro-Life Movement is at
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To: jonboy
Catholic will likely see Mary as divine.

Please check yourself on your ignorance of Catholic theology before putting down crap like that. Mary is not divine, but see is a lot more than a mere human.

324 posted on 02/22/2004 2:01:14 AM PST by Flying Circus
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To: CyberAnt
I'm no theologian but one of the best explanations I was given for Mary remaining ever-Virgin is because she carried the Lord as did the Ark in the days of Moses. Mary is the Ark of the the "New" Covenant that was promised. In the OT God placed a Cherub to guard the entrance to the passageway (just as He placed one at the entrance of the garden earlier on (Gen. 3:24)) to prevent man from entering.

Calvin, like Luther and Zwingli taught the perpetual virginity of Mary.

To Catholics like me, saying that Mary did not remain a virgin is tantamount to saying that she was not the Ark of the New Covenant and that Jesus was just a mere man.

When I read what the OT has to say about the original ark, I am confident that God would not have dealt with the New Ark any differently.
325 posted on 02/22/2004 2:12:38 AM PST by Jordan Vandenberg
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To: Leonine; sandyeggo
I have a great Catholic resource to recommend:

Check it out!

Catholic Encyclopedia. More than 11,000 articles on Catholic topics.
Summa Theologica. The theological masterpiece of St. Thomas Aquinas.
Church Fathers. Letters, speeches and books from the earliest Christians.
How to Recite the Holy Rosary. Please feel free to copy and distribute this sheet.
Catholic Links. A growing directory of good Catholic websites.
Ave Maria Singles. One of our longtime supporters, and the best site on the Web for single Catholics.
Learn More. Read Catholic Answers' Pillar of Fire, Pillar of Truth for a good introduction to the Catholic Faith.


Here are the top 50 Catholic websites in the world, ranked in order of popularity according to Alexa's TrafficRank software. This is a list of the busiest Catholic websites, which are not necessarily the best Catholic websites.
326 posted on 02/22/2004 2:37:44 AM PST by (The Missing Key of the Pro-Life Movement is at
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To: Jordan Vandenberg
Well .. there is no scripture to support your "theory" about Mary. Mary had to be a representation of MANKIND or redemption was invalid; it's that simple!

By subscribing special privileges to her like constant virginity (while she was having intercourse and children with her husband like a normal wife) is absurd; or by subscribing sinlessness to her and saying she was the first Christian - actually exhaults her above Jesus. Jesus was sinless because of the blood of God in his veins, not because of Mary's flesh. Paul taught us that Jesus was "the firstborn from the dead", making Jesus the "first Christian".

God cautioned us to "rightly divide the Word of God".

You can choose to believe whatever you want, but there just is no correlation between Mary being a virgin when Jesus was born and God placing a Cherub to guard the entrance to Eden .. that is the most astouding thing I have ever heard.

One thing is for sure, I could never accept what the Catholics or the Calvinists teach. It just doesn't line up with the Word of God.
327 posted on 02/22/2004 2:42:33 AM PST by CyberAnt (The 2004 Election is for the SOUL of AMERICA)
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To: Ciexyz
Please see 322 about Mary.
328 posted on 02/22/2004 3:00:03 AM PST by (The Missing Key of the Pro-Life Movement is at
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To: what's up
Mary says herslf that she needed a Saviour. Please see 322
329 posted on 02/22/2004 3:06:34 AM PST by (The Missing Key of the Pro-Life Movement is at
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To: jonboy
Brother, please see 322.
330 posted on 02/22/2004 3:21:54 AM PST by (The Missing Key of the Pro-Life Movement is at
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To: jonboy
Those who see the relationship between Jesus and Mary who are Catholic will likely see Mary as divine.

Oops! I'm sure that this has already been commented on, but Catholics don't believe that Mary was divine! Catholics regard her as the greatest saint.

331 posted on 02/22/2004 4:48:06 AM PST by Aquinasfan (Isaiah 22:22, Rev 3:7, Mat 16:19)
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To: BlueAngel
I watched it last night. It was an inspiring show, don't you think?
332 posted on 02/22/2004 5:11:20 AM PST by secret garden (Go Predators! Go Spurs!)
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To: savedbygrace
And your scriptural source for praying to saints is . . . ?

And your scriptural source for Luther's non-Biblical doctrine of "the Bible alone" is?

333 posted on 02/22/2004 5:49:33 AM PST by Aquinasfan (Isaiah 22:22, Rev 3:7, Mat 16:19)
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To: montag813
Sorry. Meant 3 of 4.

There are more Gospels but they were not canonized.

334 posted on 02/22/2004 5:50:17 AM PST by LowCountryJoe (Shameless way to get you to view my FR homepage)
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To: beckett
There are some extreme Marians who have lobbied the current Pope to name her "co-redemptrix," but the Magisterium so far has rebuffed them

"Co" as in "cooperate," not "co-president." The term means to emphasize Mary's singular, cooperative role in Christ's mission, that she never refused God.

The term isn't meant to raise her to the same level as Christ. The doctrine of Mary as co-redemptrix hasn't been formally dogmatized for pastoral reasons, because the term is confusing.

335 posted on 02/22/2004 5:57:45 AM PST by Aquinasfan (Isaiah 22:22, Rev 3:7, Mat 16:19)
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To: savedbygrace
Where in scripture does Elizabeth do this?

Luke 1:42 And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed [art] thou among women, and blessed [is] the fruit of thy womb.

(Of course, you have no scriptural support for even Gabriel praying to saints, do you?)

No, but I have scriptural support for Gabriel honoring Mary and saying to her "Hail, Full of Grace". And Mary is not dead. She's alive to God. We are still connected to the entire Body of Christ, past, present and future. Mary and the other saints can pray for us just as surely as you can pray for me.

336 posted on 02/22/2004 6:04:13 AM PST by Clintons a commie
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To: what's up
Therefore, when scripture states, All have sinned" it is absolutely accurate. Including Mary.

Two problems

One: Newborn babies who die, still born babies, aborted babies, and retarded people cannot "sin"...

Two, insisting Mary has sinned means that God, the all pure, lived in a soiled sinfilled sinner for nine months.

Protestant's don't realize that most of the catholic and orthodox doctrines about Mary are actually about the essence of Christ.

If Christ was just a man, then Mary could have been a sinner. If he is truly God, then only the purist and best was deemed worthy of holding him.

The argument that Jesus was truly God versus a "superman" or an 'ascended master" or a "god" like Hercules was a common argument in the early church--Arians for awhile were larger than Christians.

337 posted on 02/22/2004 6:05:32 AM PST by LadyDoc (liberals only love politically correct poor people)
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To: savedbygrace
Timothy and the other believers were still alive on the earth. That's a crucial distinction. You're praying to those who have died. Yes, they are alive forever in heaven, but they died, and they are not God.

Revelation 5:8

And when he had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.

338 posted on 02/22/2004 6:09:11 AM PST by Aquinasfan (Isaiah 22:22, Rev 3:7, Mat 16:19)
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To: BlueAngel; VOA; jonboy; secret garden
I don't know if its the SAME program that you are referring to but........Last night (Saturday night) @ 11 PM, as I was preparing for bed I flipped the channel briefly to TBN (Trinity Broadcast Network on my local Adelphia Cable) and they had a special on: "The Making of THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST".


I had already shut the computer down and logged off so I watched the hour-long special and I didn't flash an alert here at FR. I was completely entranced by the show and was brought to tears on numerous occasions ( a TV show!).

339 posted on 02/22/2004 6:11:53 AM PST by DoctorMichael (Thats my story, and I'm sticking to it.)
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To: Ohioan from Florida
You're right that we have a different understanding. You say, "Catholics understand prayer to be a form of conversation." My belief is that prayer is a form of communication with God. That's an important distinction.

You say that Mary never died, and cite support for that conclusion in the fact that her death isn't mentioned in the Bible. That logic is astounding. Her death may not be mentioned in the Bible, but the concept that she didn't die is extra-Biblical.

There is no private interpretation of scripture, but significant portions of Catholcism are built on extra-Biblical concepts.

You also say that you have gained a deeper understanding of scripture as you've aged. That's good. But if your deeper understanding is based on concepts that are out of line with Biblical teachings, your teacher isn't the Holy Spirit.

In this case, scripture clearly states that ALL have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Any doctrine which holds that Mary was excluded from that is out of line with scripture. This is not debatable.

340 posted on 02/22/2004 6:30:44 AM PST by savedbygrace
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