The "Passion" Movie

Commentary by Dr. Gerhard Falk


Mel Gibson - A Hater for Our Time

The actor and movie producer Mel Gibson was raised by a father who claims that the Holocaust never happened, that all Jews are “Christ killers” and that violence against Jews is a religious duty. Unless Mel is less than human, his early childhood and the lessons he learned there must have affected him as much as they affect anyone.

Therefore, Gibson has used his money and his influence as an actor to produce a disgusting display of hate, brutality and violence seeking to inflame Christians against the Jewish population here and abroad.

Gibson will undoubtedly make a great deal of money from his sadistic production. He is, and will be, the hero of all haters, Nazis, Ku Klux Klan followers and other religious bigots. Like Joseph Göbbels, Hitler’s propaganda minister, he revived the old Passion Play as a tool for inciting violence against the Jewish community and justifying mass murder.

It may be little consolation to Jews that Gibson belongs to a religion which consists of those excommunicated by the Catholic Church. It is however true that in 1988 Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre of Belgium and all of his followers were excommunicated by the pope for refusing to accept the teachings of Vatican II and for other efforts to negate the teachings of the pope.

The Lefebvre church is particularly opposed to the teaching on religious liberty and the statement of the R.C. church that neither the Jews of Jesus’ day nor the Jews of today are responsible for the death of Jesus. Therefore, Gibson now made a movie deliberately seeking to incite hatred and persecution, bloodshed and cruelty. In fact, the whole movie is an exercise in sadism. It is surprising that some Christians want their children to see that horror even as they denounce violence on television.

In 1965, the second Vatican Council and ecumenical (worldwide) meeting of the church “fathers” met in Rome and altered many R.C. teachings. In particular they drew up a statement which begins with the words “nostra aetate” or “in our day”. This goes on to say that in our day we know that there are many religions other than Christianity, that all have a rights to their beliefs and that G’d has many ways of revealing himself to many peoples. It then specifically and repeatedly rejects the “christ killer” accusation against Jews.

In 1990, the pope issued a declaration on the 25th anniversary of “nostra aetate” and repeated many of its statements. In addition, he and his advisers declared that 1.the church is rooted in the Jewish people 2. that Jesus was a Jew 3. the Virgin Mary was “a daughter of the Jewish people” 4. the Jews are the subjects of love (not hate as Gibson would have it) 5. “The Fathers of the Council…….deny in a clear and decisive manner ……..that Jews bear responsibility for the death of Christ.” 6. the council rejects the argument that ‘let his blood be upon us and our children’ refers to Jews. The council says that this means Christians, not Jews. Etc etc. etc.

Similarly, the Lutheran church has issued a declaration on “anti-Semitism” condemning it entirely and insisting that Luther’s diatribes against Jews are not their views today (If this interests you and you want to see these declarations in their entirety, go to the library and get out my book The Jew in Christian Theology. This also includes a translation of Luther’s hateful diatribe “Vom Shem Hamphorash”).

Other Protestant churches have made similar declarations and taught all this for years.

Nevertheless, we see that the Europeans have learned nothing. In Europe, and of course among the Moslems, hate of Jews is as revolting as ever. The Arabs (not all Moslems are Arabs) use television and all other media to spread their hate all over the world. Now they can use Gibson’s disgusting obscenities for their purposes as well. No doubt he delights in the money his hate is making for him.

Yet, I know that he will not succeed any more than all the haters of the past succeeded. Indeed, the Gibsons of this world murdered 6 million “Christ killers” in gas ovens and otherwise. No doubt, the European Jews may yet have to move to Israel to save their lives from the killers and haters a la Gibson. That would do the same thing for Israel that his hate mongering friends did when they drove 1 million Russian Jews out of Russia to Israel by their incitement against the Russian Jewish population.

Yet, Gibson will lose. Hate loses. Love wins. There are in this country millions of Christians and others who will never allow themselves to be influenced by the hatemonger Gibson.

Be sure never to attend a Gibson movie again. His name joins all the endless persecutors of our people who, since the days of the Pharaoh, have tried to wipe us out of this world. They failed then. Gibson will fail now. Remember the last words we sing at the end of every Shabbat service in the synagogue of your choice. “God is with me, I shall not fear.” Be not afraid. Speak up. Denounce the monster Gibson and above all, come to “shul” this Shabbat and meet your Jewish friends.

Shalom u’vracha.

Dr. Gerhard Falk is the author of numerous publications, including Man's Ascent to Reason (2003) & the forthcoming Football & American Identity.

Home ] Up ]