CREDOS : Gibson’s Passion — III

Laura Matthews

This film reminds me of his humanity — his human relationships, his human suffering, his human sacrifice. I felt for his dear ones, and for those sincere individuals who were converted even as he made his walk up that hill. If an honest depiction of his suffering and sacrifice are a shock to me, I believe this is because I’ve been glossing over them all these years. Frankly, I’m glad to have this brought to my attention in a way it never has been before.

In the movie, I watched as Jesus is scourged mercilessly and drags himself up the torturous road to the site of the crucifixion. In one supreme moment of suffering, there’s a close-up on his agonised face, and then there’s a sudden flashback to his face at the Last Supper. Gently he’s saying to his disciples, “This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you” (taken from the Gospel of John). And then the movie takes us right back to his agonised face again. This, I have to admit, burned in my heart and brought tears to my eyes. And I thought, what if all who watch this movie get the same message? What if the world is turned upside down with Love?

Gibson’s Reader’s Digest interview closes with this question and answer:Reader’s Digest: Give me the headline you want to see on the biggest paper in America the day after The Passion opens. Gibson: War endsFor all the wars that have been fought in Jesus’ name, all the destruction and death his misguided followers have perpetrated, the message has always been the same: Love. Obeyed, it would indeed end war. —, concluded