The Passion of The Christ


Staff member
As this has opened in America I'm opening this up, even though I've not had an opportunity to see it yet.

Getting lots of hype. You can tell it is big because even non-Christians are talking about it. Personally I don't think this can be anything other than a good thing.

What does everyone make of it?

I think that Evangelical Christians need to be careful in their promotion of this film.

Yes it is great that a big budget film has been made about the life of Christ

Yes it appear to be the one of the most accurate & detailed about his death (apart from the nails in the hands)

Yes it is a great discussion point and potentially an effective tool for evangelism.


We should examine it and see how it compares with Scripture... Is it accurate & factual or does it have artistic licence? does it omit things or add things in? does it protray a false gospel?

Mel Gibson belongs to an sect of Catholics which do not even represent the main stream Catholic view of the Bible, far less an Evangelical Christian viewpoint.

1 Thessalonians 5:21 Test all things; hold fast what is good.
I think that we can enjoy it as a great film and hopefully can use it as an opportunity to share the true Gospel message that yes Jesus died on a cross, but rose again, ascended to heaven & is coming back one day to claim those who believe in him!!




Staff member
Good points Jazz.

The feedback I've heard from sources I trust is that it is good. Of course I'd like to see that for myself, and make my own mind up on the subject.

I'm also curious to see what certificate it will receive over here, and then see what all the Christians who won't go to anything higher than a PG will do. (My guess - based on what I've heard - is it will be at least a 15.)

On a more serious point I'm slightly more concerned about the allegations of the film being anti-Semetic. When I see this it is something I will be keeping an eye on.


New Member
I know that I will have to see the film before I can make any fair judgements. Based on what I have read, I have serious concerns about biblical accuracy - since much was based not on scripture but on mystical occult visions of Anne Catherine Emmerich and another mystic. The film is loyal to Catholic doctrine.

I have some informative links on The Passion. This one goes into detail on
the biblical accuracy issue.

This one is by a rabbi written concerning the antisemitism issue.

I do plan to see the movie soon so I can offer my own reactions, but I think
it is good to have some awareness of these issues. It is disturbing, but
maybe not surprising that the popular voices of Christianity not only give
unqualified praise to the film, but claim it is biblically accurate, and
deny cautions about antisemitism. I also want to evaluate the film for its
artistic merits.

I personally dislike graphic violence, but understand that this jaded, hard-hearted sinful generation needs to be shaken. Maybe it will make people think about the person of Jesus Christ, and whether or not they liked the movie, they might read the book.


CoffE Moderator
Staff member
thjis is a quote from someone I personally trust who has seen it:

"When I saw the rough cut of the crucifixion scene from ?The Passion of the Christ? this past summer in Washington, D.C., I knew this film would be special. Its artistic beauty along with Biblical accuracy combines for a deeply moving experience. My response at the end was overwhelming ?awe? that Christ died that we might live?and live with Passion.""


CoffE Moderator
Staff member
Toneboy said:
From snippets I have seen it appears that the film will have an 18 certificate. :eek:
indeed - it is out on wednesday at our local Warner Bros. cinema. Will probably go and see it Thursday.
Calvary Chapel, Stirling have booked the local cinema in Stirling 135 seats as an evangelical outreach and will be giving away free tickets.

Unfortunately as it is a small cinema it will not get the movie till late April (26th) but the cinema is at the university campus so will be ideal timing for all the students coming back after easter break.

We pray that many unsaved will come along and we hope to have some form of message after it, either an invitation for prayer/to receive Christ or invite them to a Q&A session the following Wednesday at C.C.S.

Please pray that the Holy Spirit will use the movie to soften the hardened hearts of the people of Stirling.



Staff member
Well, I've seen it, and here are the points I can make at the moment. To be honest trying to put what I've seen into words will be tough, but here goes:

After we left the cinema Lainy said to me, "You're very quiet," which normally happens when I'm deep in thought. It wasn't just me, it was most of the audience in the cinema. I've never seen anything like it before.

As a rule I don't like foreign-language films, and I was worried that the dialogue being in Aramaic and Latin would really get on my nerves. Strangely I felt it added a lot to the film, but I can't explain why.

I was very impressed by the use of flashbacks in the film, especially when combined with appropriate usage of scripture.

At the same time I should point out that there is some use of what I would suggest is conjecture in the film. Do we really know what happens between Judas offering to return the 30 pieces of silver and him hanging himself? I don't believe there is, but it is featured in the film.

Is the film Anti-Semetic? I don't think so. It is just following the Biblical story. Does that make all World War II films Anti-German/Japanese? One Jew who was interviewed on the Channel 4 documentary "Mel Gibson: God's Lethal Weapon" inferred that the Jews were the only people who were shown to be evil in the film. Did he not see what the Roman soldiers were doing?

As for the content of the film, it is brutal. It is possibly the most gruesome thing I've ever seen on a screen. I was a bit apprehensive about seeing it because of that, and there were bits I simply couldn't watch. However I'm glad I saw it, and I'm glad this film was made, because the death of Jesus wasn't pretty, it was gruesome.

In the car on the way home Lainy and I were discussing traditional images of the crucifixion, about how they are traditionally very clean. The crucifixion wasn't clean, this film tells people that, and if it helps people see that then so much the better.

As for me, well I didn't cry, but I was expecting the worst and so I had somewhat put my personal barriers up because of that. However it has given me a more vivid picture of what Jesus went through, and I'm more appreciative of the sacrifice He willingly made for me.

(I've probably missed lots of things out. If anyone who hasn't seen the film yet has any questions just ask.)


Staff member
Sold 9 million copies on DVD and VHS in America in its first week on sale. Amazing if the region 1 DVD is like the region 2 DVD, i.e. no extras whatsoever.
I went along with my 'unsaved' husband to see this film months ago I also had to close my eyes in parts especially the nails being driven in, tears also rolled down my cheeks but I wasn't sobbing which I thought strange.
I don't think it held the Jews responsible at all, sure we are all guilty of that crime,
I agree about it being very brutal but it does protray just what Jesus did suffer for us I thought it protrayed the Bible very well, but I was a little saddened by the ending I don't want to give the ending away but I really thought it made no big deal of Jesus' resurrection at all which dissapointed me greatly as the whole outcome of his death is his resurrection.
I also experienced the 'quietness' of everyone in the cinema and when all were leaving no words were spoken by anyone.
My husband's words outside the cinema were 'Well it wouldn't make me wanna run to be a Christian' I could have cried at those words, I couldn't even answer him just left him with his conscience.
That was my husbands reaction too Maureen. And my stomach sunk too. In fact he picked holes in it and to be honest, many of the holes he picked were justified
There was quite a bit that wasnt exactly biblical, more traditional. But then it was produced by a Catholic. And someone said, a breakaway sect of Catholics at that.
I liked the bit where Jesus crushed the snakes head.....very simbolic but would only mean something to those in the know.
There is nothing in the bible to say that Mary Magdeline was a prostitute and she was not the woman who was caught in place her in that position is just conjecture.
What was the significance of Mary and Jesus mother wiping up Jesus blood? I assumed it was because the blood was precious. However, at that point in the proceedings no one would have attached that significance to it. Also they would not have been allowed within that area. There is nothing in the bible that substanciates this. The scourging scene was absolutley awful and probably quite acurate but oh how my stomach twisted as I watched it......more so than the crucifiction actually.
I thought the 'way of the cross' was too long drawn out and the way Simon of Cyrene carried Jesus as well as the cross was inacurate. The 'veronica' wiping Jesus face is pure tradition....this might appear in apocriphal writings but its not in the bible.
The nails through the hands was wrong as well. They would have been driven in above the wrist in the gap between the radius and ulna;otherwise the hand would have torn away as it couldnt hold the weight of the body.
There was more that I found to criticise but I cant remember it now as its a few months since I saw it.
I can forgive Hollywood productions being inacurate and indulging in poetic licence but this was hyped up to be acurate and it wasnt what it was cracked up to be. But I'm glad I saw it.
Speaking of hollywood, a verse comes to mind that sums up hollywood's attitude to history:

Cecil B de Mille
Much against his will
Was persuaded to leave Moses
Out of the wars of the Roses
I filled in a quiz at belief net regarding this film and scored a big fat zero - so I decided that it would not be my cup of tea. As I cannot even watch Holby city due to squeamishness where blood is concerned (I faint at needles) I'll stay outside the cinema when it's playing :)