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THE MARIOLATRY OF GIBSON'S MOVIE

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Mel Gibson believes that Mary is “a tremendous co-redemptrix and mediatrix” (David Neff, “Mel, Mary, and Mothers,” Christianity Today online, Feb. 20, 2004). This means that Mary suffered with Christ and became the Mother of all believers, the Queen of Heaven, an intercessor for the saints.

Gibson has testified that this movie The Passion of the Christ represents his faith, and there can be no doubt of that for those who view the film without prejudice.

Consider the following examples of how The Passion of the Christ exalts Mary in an unscriptural fashion:

* Peter and John call Mary “Mother” and the word “Mother” is capitalized in the subtitles.

* As Jesus is tormented by the devil in the Garden of Gethsemane, Mary wakes up and senses Jesus' agony. (Gibson got this from the visions of Catholic mystic Anne-Catherine Emmerich. “During this agony of Jesus, I saw the Blessed Virgin also overwhelmed with sorrow and anguish of soul, in the house of Mary, the mother of Mark. She was with Magdalen and Mary in the garden belonging to the house, and almost prostrate from grief, with her whole body bowed down as she knelt. She fainted several times, for she beheld in spirit different portions of the agony of Jesus.”)

* Jesus prays to God, “I am your servant and the son of your handmaid.” The Bible never tells us that Jesus prayed in this manner. It is another unscriptural Catholic exaltation of Mary.

* After Peter denies Jesus, he is leaving the courtyard and sees Mary, Mary Magdalene, and John. He gets on his knees before Mary, calls her “Mother,” and confesses his denial to her. She holds out her hand to him (as if she is going to forgive him), and he runs away saying that he isn't worthy. Peter twice tells Mary not to touch him after he denied Jesus. (Gibson got this from the visions of Catholic mystic Anne-Catherine Emmerich.) This is rank heresy. It was Jesus against whom Peter sinned that night, not Mary!

* Mary is near Jesus all during His suffering, co-mingling her sorrow with his pain.

* Mary is the only person other than Jesus who can see Satan. This gives her supernatural abilities akin to those of Christ.

* As the soldiers bring Jesus before Caiaphas, Jesus looks at Mary, who is across the courtyard, and Mary says, “It has begun, Lord ... so be it.” Thus, in this Catholic version of the Gospel Mary adds her “so be it” to Christ's sufferings just as she did to the angel's announcement of the virgin birth.

* Mary goes to a specific place in the temple and lays down on the floor with her head on the stones because she sensed the presence of Jesus chained underneath the floor. She knew where he was. The camera pans through the floor and shows Jesus hanging from shackles and looking up into the stone ceiling toward Mary. (This is from the visions of Anne-Catherine Emmerich. “Mary was with Jesus in spirit, and Jesus was with her; but this loving Mother wished to hear with her own ears the voice of her Divine Son.”)

* Mary interacts with Pilate's wife and appeals to her to protect Jesus from the angry crowd. There is not a hint of this in Scripture. (Gibson got this from the visions of Catholic mystic Anne-Catherine Emmerich.)

* Pontius Pilate's wife gives some cloths to Mary. (Gibson got this from the visions of Catholic mystic Anne-Catherine Emmerich. “ “I saw Claudia Procles, the wife of Pilate, send some large pieces of linen to the Mother of God.”)

* Mary and Mary Magdalene wipe up Jesus' blood after He is whipped. (This is from Anne-Catherine Emmerich's visions. “Then it was that the Mother of Jesus, accompanied by the holy women, approached the pillar and wiped up the blood with which it and the ground around were saturated.”)

* Once when Jesus falls down, he is depicted as not having the strength to rise until he looks at Mary and gains strength from her. He is depicted as receiving strength from her at other times as well.

* Once Mary runs up to Jesus when he falls and there is a flashback showing the child Jesus falling and hurting himself and being comforted by Mary, thus directly associating Mary's aid with Jesus' sufferings.

* While Jesus is on the cross, Mary comes up and kisses his foot. The blood runs down into her mouth, and she backs away “almost licking her lips with blood all over her face.”

* As she is looking up at the cross, Mary asks Jesus if she can die with him. She says, “Flesh of my flesh and heart of my heart, let me die with you.” (This is from the visions of Catholic mystic Anne-Catherine Emmerich. “The Blessed Virgin, filled with intense feelings of motherly love, entreated her Son to permit her to die with him.” ) One reviewer admits, “There is that identity of Mary with the death of Christ as well; not just in mourning His death but in wanting to participate in it.” The Bible says that Jesus Christ BY HIMSELF bore our sins (Heb. 1:3), and the reason why the Bible has none of these depictions is because Mary had nothing to do with Christ's suffering for our sins. The way that Mary is placed everywhere with Jesus in His suffering is blasphemous.

* Mary is depicted as holding the dead Jesus at the foot of the Cross, which is a reenactment of the unscriptural Roman Catholic Pieta . This depicts Mary as the suffering Mother who assisted her son in our redemption. Roman Catholic priest Thomas Rosica, who oversaw World Youth Day 2002 in Canada, observed: “The interplay of Mary and Jesus in this film is moving, and reaches its apex in the scene of the Pietà. The Mother of the Lord is inviting each of us to share her grief and behold her Son.”

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