27 Mar 2004

Passion of Christ anti-Semitic?

Submitted by theshovel
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Jim... I recently saw The Passion Of The Christ. Everyone says that it is antisematic.... i do not believe it is so. i believe in christ and i picture in my heads the way things went down.I know that i am born of Christ but are all these people wrong or right or is it that we must descern it for ourselves? Do you know? Shannon

Hello Shannon, thanks for writing,

I have not as yet seen this flick ... though I plan to in the near future. As to it's being anti-Semitic, I can only answer according to the little that I've heard and read. Then again, such assessments are sometimes rated more upon the perception of those who may be offended rather than upon intentions of the alleged offenders. As I understand it the movie depicted abuse not only from the Jews but also from the Romans ... and I don't think I've heard any complaints of anti-Romanism.

The truth is that any offense taken by either of those two parties is something that would be leveled against all men, for we have been in both positions in our life. The leadership of the Jews in power at that time is no different than what has followed all religious authorities since, and many have been unjustly murdered, as has been claimed, "in the name of Christ" over the centuries. Also, the political and military power of the Romans is no different than all others who have abused that authority and power.

We have all learned how to blame somebody else for our troubles and mistakes, and the religious institution is no different. Historically speaking, the Roman Catholic church had long ago coined the phrase Christ-killers as a designation of the Jewish people, and I'm not sure if it was ever publicly apologized for by that institution (though it seems as if something may have been said by the latest pope a while back). With such a title hanging over their heads for so long I can understand that any mention of the facts surrounding Jesus' death are easily assumed to be an attack. Also, don't forget that the Jews suffered under the hand of a so-called Christian based government. That's right, Hitler claimed to be doing the will of God in eliminating the Jews.

So, who's right or who's wrong? This is the concern of the religious mind and not that of the mind of life (which is Christ). Religion has been trying to discern right and wrong - and causing a lot of trouble in the process - for a long, long time. In Christ, the wrong had been destroyed in his own body on the cross, and somehow, we've been forever trying to establish our own righteousness, and to do it all in the name of Christ. I think we're missing something here, don't you? :)

Jim

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