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The Passion of the Christ

Stealing Jesus

Mel Gibson’s movie “The Passion of the Christ” continues to set box office records. Hyped as one of the most powerful evangelistic tools ever made, a big chunk of Gibson’s earnings are the direct result of church activity. Congregations across the country have bought thousands of tickets and literally bussed people to theaters to see […] Read More

Controversy and curiosity have followed Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ” to the Middle East. Critics and publics alike are debating its stances on Semitism, even as cinemas across the Arab world screen the film to box-office success. Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Bahrain, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates are all showing the film […] Read More

I recently watched Mel Gibson’s film “The Passion,” a powerful interpretation of the last hours of Jesus’ human life, which I’m sure will resonate with the dominant culture. Yet for some, the movie has become inerrant. It is true that the movie does a superb job in historically depicting the suffering of Christ in all […] Read More

Before the first frame of the movie ever came up, a couple on the theater’s back row was making sure tissues would be handy. Sure enough, before Jesus made it out of the Garden of Gethsemane—the opening sequence of “The Passion of the Christ”—those tissues were being used.   But the violence between guards and […] Read More

Like everyone else, and Christians especially, “The Passion of the Christ” is overwhelming me. Actually, I haven’t yet seen the film, but I am feeling pummeled by daily e-mails from family and others, all urging me to go and see Mel Gibson’s latest creation. I have read the testimonials, heard the hype, noted the commentary […] Read More

The story of Jesus’ death in Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ” will likely seem more familiar to Catholic viewers than to Protestants. That’s because Gibson, a traditionalist Catholic, closely follows the Stations of the Cross, a series of 14 images or pictures representing stages in Christ’s suffering and death that are found in […] Read More

The world is abuzz about “The Passion of the Christ.” I admit, I didn’t want to see it. I couldn’t make it through “The Pianist” or “Gladiator.” How could I endure two hours of torture–on the screen and in my gut? But when popular culture is talking about your story, you better know what is […] Read More

Much criticism directed at Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ” is that it is too violent and that it puts too much blame for the Crucifixion on Jews. Both are valid concerns. Christians who object to violence in pictures by the likes of Martin Scorsese and Quentin Tarantino are flocking to this film, with […] Read More

Christians will likely ignore the most biblically sound theme in Mel Gibson’s movie “The Passion of the Christ,” and they will likely embrace the most biblically faulty problems of the movie. Both offer insightful congregational leaders a teachable moment. First is Jesus’ complete rejection of violence, which Gibson accurately captures. Jesus speaks against the use […] Read More

Since I haven’t seen Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ,” I can only ask questions. I have lots of them: –Does it honor Jesus or exploit Jesus? Richard Niebuhr in his critique of liberalism wrote, “A God without wrath brought men without sin into a kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ […] Read More