The Passion of the Christ

jokaroo

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Article Regarding Mel Gibson's new movie, The Passion of the Christ.
Original Article: http://www.towardtradition.org/article_Passion_Feb_2004.htm

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Why Mel Owes One To The Jews
By Rabbi Daniel Lapin
President, Toward Tradition

Two weeks before Mel Gibson's Passion flashes onto two thousand screens, online ticket merchants are reporting that up to half their total sales are for advance purchases for Passion. One Dallas multiplex has reserved all twenty of its screens for The Passion. I am neither a prophet nor a movie critic. I am merely an Orthodox rabbi using ancient Jewish wisdom to make three predictions about The Passion.

One, Mel Gibson and Icon Productions will make a great deal of money. Those distributors who surrendered to pressure from Jewish organizations and passed on Passion will be kicking themselves, while Newmarket Films will laugh all the way to the bank. Theater owners are going to love this film.

Two, Passion will become famous as the most serious and substantive Biblical movie ever made. It will be one of the most talked-about entertainment events in history, it is currently on the cover of Newsweek and Vanity Fair.

My third prediction is that the faith of millions of Christians will become more fervent as Passion uplifts and inspires them. Passion will propel vast numbers of unreligious Americans to embrace Christianity. The movie will one day be seen as a harbinger of America's third great religious reawakening.

Those Jewish organizations that have squandered both time and money futilely protesting Passion, ostensibly in order to prevent pogroms in Pittsburgh, can hardly be proud of their performance. They failed at everything they attempted. They were hoping to ruin Gibson rather than enrich him. They were hoping to suppress Passion rather than promote it. Finally, they were hoping to help Jews rather than harm them.

Here I digress slightly to exercise the Jewish value of "giving the benefit of the doubt" by discounting cynical suggestions growing in popularity, that the very public nature of their attack on Gibson exposed their real purpose-fundraising. Apparently, frightening wealthy widows in Florida about anti-Semitic thugs prowling the streets of America causes them to open their pocketbooks and refill the coffers of groups with little other raison d'être. But let's assume they were hoping to help Jews.

However, instead of helping the Jewish community, they have inflicted lasting harm. By selectively unleashing their fury only on wholesome entertainment that depicts Christianity, in a positive light, they have triggered anger, hurt, and resentment. Hosting the Toward Tradition Radio Show and speaking before many audiences nationwide, I enjoy extensive communication with Christian America and what I hear is troubling. Fearful of attracting the ire of Jewish groups that are so quick to hurl the "anti-Semite" epithet, some Christians are reluctant to speak out. Although one can bludgeon resentful people into silence, behind closed doors emotions continue to simmer.

I consider it crucially important for Christians to know that not all Jews are in agreement with their self-appointed spokesmen. Most American Jews, experiencing warm and gracious interactions each day with their Christian fellow-citizens, would feel awkward trying to explain why so many Jewish organizations seem focused on an agenda hostile to Judeo-Christian values. Many individual Jews have shared with me their embarrassment that groups, ostensibly representing them, attack Passion but are silent about depraved entertainment that encourages killing cops and brutalizing women. Citing artistic freedom, Jewish groups helped protect sacrilegious exhibits such as the anti-Christian feces extravaganza presented by the Brooklyn Museum four years ago. One can hardly blame Christians for assuming that Jews feel artistic freedom is important only when exercised by those hostile toward Christianity. However, this is not how all Jews feel.

From audiences around America, I am encountering bitterness at Jewish organizations insisting that belief in the New Testament is de facto evidence of anti-Semitism. Christians heard Jewish leaders denouncing Gibson for making a movie that follows Gospel accounts of the Crucifixion long before any of them had even seen the movie. Furthermore, Christians are hurt that Jewish groups are presuming to teach them what Christian Scripture "really means." Listen to a rabbi whom I debated on the Fox television show hosted by Bill O'Reilly last September. This is what he said, "We have a responsibility as Jews, as thinking Jews, as people of theology, to respond to our Christian brothers and to engage them, be it Protestants, be it Catholics, and say, look, this is not your history, this is not your theology, this does not represent what you believe in."

He happens to be a respected rabbi and a good one, but he too has bought into the preposterous proposition that Jews will reeducate Christians about Christian theology and history. Is it any wonder that this breathtaking arrogance spurs bitterness?

Many Christians who, with good reason, have considered themselves to be Jews' best (and perhaps, only) friends also feel bitter at Jews believing that Passion is revealing startling new information about the Crucifixion. They are incredulous at Jews thinking that exposure to the Gospels in visual form will instantly transform the most philo-Semitic gentiles of history into snarling, Jew-hating predators.

Christians are baffled by Jews who don't understand that President George Washington, who knew and revered every word of the Gospels, was still able to write that oft-quoted beautiful letter to the Touro Synagogue in Newport, offering friendship and full participation in America to the Jewish community.

One of the directors of the AJC recently warned that Passion "could undermine the sense of community between Christians and Jews that's going on in this country. We're not allowing the film to do that." No sir, it isn't the film that threatens the sense of community; it is the arrogant and intemperate response of Jewish organizations that does so.

Jewish organizations, hoping to help but failing so spectacularly, refutes all myths of Jewish intelligence. How could their plans have been so misguided and the execution so inept?

Ancient Jewish wisdom teaches that nothing confuses one's thinking more than being in the grip of the two powerful emotions, love and hate. The actions of these Jewish organizations sadly suggest that they are in the grip of a hatred for Christianity that is only harming Jews.

Today, peril threatens all Americans, both Jews and Christians. Many of the men and women in the front lines find great support in their Christian faith. It is strange that Jewish organizations, purporting to protect Jews, think that insulting allies is the preferred way to carry out that mandate.

A ferocious Rottweiler dog in your suburban home will quickly estrange your family from the neighborhood. For those of us in the Jewish community who cherish friendship with our neighbors, some Jewish organizations have become our Rottweilers. God help us.

Radio talk show host, Rabbi Daniel Lapin,
is president of Toward Tradition,
a bridge-building organization
providing a voice for all Americans
who defend the Judeo-Christian values
vital for our nation’s survival.​
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Please note that Jokaroo is no way affiliated with this article and we are only posting it to stir up debate in our debate forum. We will not hold an opinion on this matter.
 

aikia

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Well, this guy sure makes sense *rolls eyes* as an Advertising major, I know that one of the best marketing techniques for a product is word of mouth, and Passion sure has gotten that thanks to these groups that are sooo worried about anti-sematic sentiments. Bwah.
 

bigfoot1948

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I believe that the Rabbi makes a very valid point, in that people will think and do whatever they want, no matter what anybody else says or does.



Thank You Rabbi for your words.




 

stone wolf

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Feb 3, 2004
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The truth is that Jesus died for each one of us and he loves us all. We are all guilty for his death and for these groups that are opposing this movie.......Well, let me say that I believe they need to get on their knees and ask God for his forgiveness. The path of light to heaven is narrow and it seems to me that they are trying to walk side by side instead of following the Lord Jesus Christ.
 

IZaNaMI

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[color=e27eff]This film should have never been made.

This along with the rather idiotic views of Mr. Gibson's father make their family look like a bunch of uneducated fools.
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Scooby_Dew

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I am glad that "Passion" appears to be on its way to success even before it opens. Mel Gibson put up his own money to produce this movie because the hippocrites in Hollywood were affraid to touch it. Sure, they will gladly make a movie about pedophiles or incest or grizzley murders but they are affraid to make a film about something good in the world. I really don't understand what fuss is all about. It has always been my understanding that most of the debate about Christianity centers around whether the events in the New Testament took place at all and has not been about whether there are different versions of the story. In other words, "IF it happened, it happend this way". I don't think the film is going to create any anti-semitism at all. The Jews can't deny that if the events of the New Testament really happened, the Jews had a roll in the death of Jesus. However, I don't think Christians hold that against the Jews, because that would be against the teachings of Christianity. I also wonder why this film is being attacked while other Christian films are not. I believe that NBC ran a mini series a few years ago called "Jesus of Nazarath" and nobody made a fuss about that. Maybe someone can enlighten me about that. Just my thoughts on the subject.
 

Yola

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Nobody Knows The Truth That Life Holds Except The God Almighty. And If This Movie Is Ment To Happen, It Is For A Good Reason. I Am Glad That Mel Gibson Made This Movie; Not Only Is He A Great Actor, But He Knew The Consequences That Would Arise Before It Was Produced And He Has Faith That Money Isn't The Issue Here, It Is Reality And He Is Going Strictly By The Bible. If People Can't Accept The Truth Then Don't Go See It. I Understand There Are Many Religions Among Our Society, But Overall There Is Only One God, The Father, The Son And The Holy Spirit. Whether We Believe It Or Not He Will Come To Judge The Living And The Dead. I Am A True Believer And I Have Experiences Many Things In My Life, So I Am Glad That I Am A Christian. Thank You Again Mel Gibson, Keep Up The Good Work.


Yola
 

sewnutzcl1

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I don't have any qualms about the movie, I believe in God and Jesus and if someone wants to make a movie about this it is fine with me. I think that all of the fuss about this has made more people want to see it, so if they wanted to stop people from seeing the movie then they failed. I do agree with Izi on this point though;
along with the rather idiotic views of Mr. Gibson's father make their family look like a bunch of uneducated fools.
Mels father should never have been interviewed on this subject, he has made a complete fool of himself.
 

DUCKFKR

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Dec 17, 2003
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Yea the romans killed Christ, but the Jew had a good part in it too. All Mel was doing was being honest and not showing us what is politically correct. The Jews dont want anyone knowing that they betrayed another Jew, let alone the son of God. Besides is a DAMN movie. Noone cryed when Close Encounters of the third kind came out, what if aliens weren't like that? Do u think the science buff's at the universities cried wolf.
 

OldMt.Grizzly

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The point is not who killed Jesus. Remember Jesus was a jew himself. At least in his physical body. The point is that all of us have failed to live up to the perfection required by a perfect and holy God. Regardless of whether or not we like to hear that, it is still true. We could and can in no way make up for that failure on our own so Jesus (the one and only son of God, being also God Himself [no I won't take the time to explain the trinity, but you all know what I am talking about]) chose to come to earth and pay the ultimate price for each and every one of us. Not just mankind as a whole but each individual. He could have saved Himself from the cross but he offered Himself up so that we could be saved. Those are the facts. He also rose of His own power from the dead on the third day, also a fact verified by many historical accounts outside of the Bible. The only question is will you accept His free gift?
 

Ray

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thought this was supposed to be light hearted and fun.

please tell me when this became a religious forum.
 

Cat_Lady

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Ray said:
thought this was supposed to be light hearted and fun.

please tell me when this became a religious forum.

It's a forum that anyone can express their opinion about things, good or bad.
 

IZaNaMI

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[color=e27eff]Well said Catty :)

The Roo is primarily a joke site, but it also gives everyone an opportunity to voice their opinions on anything they wish.
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Foxyspooh96

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Ray said:
thought this was supposed to be light hearted and fun.

please tell me when this became a religious forum.
There are a lot of posts on Jokaroo. This post happens to be on a highly debated movie about the crucifiction af Christ. If you prefer light hearted and fun go to another post. Last time I looked this is a free forum for people to give their opinion on whatever they like. Smile, there is a lot more to life than complaining!!!
 

drtherc

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Jan 8, 2004
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As we all [may] know, the Romans killed people for the sport of it. Romans killed Jesus at the behest of the Jews.

If you want to know about my beliefs, I'm, I think, a Gnostic. I believe that both the Catholic Church and the Protestant Church have it partially right, but I believe the early Catholic Church suppressed much of the writings of the time to produce a deity, Jesus Christ. I believe that Jesus was a great teacher, and in fact, the Son of God. I don't believe Mary Magdalene was a whore, as some will say, but in fact, the wife of Jesus, who bore his offspring. There are writings that suggest this, but it is all obscured by the mists of past time. I believe that the Catholic Church very much repressed the role of the female in the theology of Christ, therefore I believe that Mary Magdalene was THE most important apostle of Christ, even ahead of Peter.

I'm not going to write abook, here, and this in no way expresses everything I believe, but that's it in a nutshell. I welcome comments and questions.
 

Jon Collardgreens

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Jan 28, 2004
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Chill Chill ! This is the roo,& I dare anybody to say
we don't have fun. There are other catagories to post
on,if you don't like commenting on this new movie or religion then go to something else.Nobody's twisting
your arm. Go to Chicken soup or the Jokes. Besides
we all vent & are allowed to vent. Venting is what the
roo is all about. We all do it. good or bad,we say whats
on our mind.Its good to get it off your chest. Now that theres all this controversy about this film,I'm gonna go see it. When I fiirst heard about it,i was not interested.
Now its got me curious.It was not just the Romans or
Jews who had a hand in Christ on the cross.It was
Sin in general that got him there.Adam & Eve started
it.So U see,you can't just hurl @ one race in particular.
So feel free to vent. If you want to have fun,you have to be here a while.Switch to different Threads. That new
movie is not worth getting bent out of shape over.
No movie is perfect. If most of us were movie directors,
we wouldn't be as poor as we are now.
 

Angela2012

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Feb 21, 2004
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hi, i am new to this so bare with me. i think that the movie is a good thing. and i pray that the non believers of Christ will see what he has done for them and bring more believers to him.
 
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