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Sunday, February 29, 2004

The Passion of 1:30
I arrived at the theater around 10:30 on Saturday morning. The movie was showing on 2 screens, every hour. There was no way for me to get in before the 1:30 showing. I wandered the mall, bought a couple of books, and arrived back at 12:15, figuring I'd be able to hang out and read.

There were already 15 people in line for a movie that wouldn't begin for another hour and a half. So I stood there, making small talk, reading, etc. It felt like waiting in line for an amusement park ride. A little nervous, ready to get on.

About 1:15, the people from the 11:30 started to file out. It was unlike any movie crowd I'd ever seen. No smiles. No talking. Silence.

And tears. Lots of tears. Not just from women. Big men coming out with red eyes. In twos and threes, some of the people holding each other, as though they were coming out of a funeral.

Grateful for the previews. Tiger Woods in a really silly rip off of Caddyshack, chasing a dancing gopher. A new take on Isaac Asimov's I Robot, starring Will Smith. You could hear people laugh, more to break the building tension than anything else.

I heard someone whisper, "Here we go."

And for 2 hours, the experience of Jesus' last hours was played out in front of me.

The range of emotions still linger, almost 24 hours later. Despair, hopelessness, fear, rage, all intermingled with the knowledge that He made choices that drove the events. He was a willing Victim.

It's hard to know which depictions were more moving.

The graphic depictions of his scourging, beating and crucifixion are balanced by the equally graphic depictions of his relationships.

Peter, John, Mary Magdalene, Lucifer.

And his mother, Mary. Always there. I thought back to what Simeon said to her when Jesus was 8 days old.

34Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: "This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, 35so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too."

It did. Over and over again through those long hours, the sword peirced her still beating heart.

When it was over, the only sound was the sobbing. People just sat there. I just sat there, unable to process what I had just witnessed. More than a movie. Somehow, calling The Passion a movie cheapens it. Makes it seem like the Previews that had provided a tension release only minutes before.

Walking out in to the Mall was liking reentering the world. That which had been so familiar now looked strange. The sounds of the typical mall seemed tinny, discordant, trivial after The Passion of The Christ.

Should everyone see the movie? No.
Children most certainly should not be subjected to this experience. But anyone interested in seeing a reenactment of the most important event in human history should see it.

As the Pope said, "It is as it was." Or at least as close as anyone has ever come to depicting the last hours of Christ.

One More:
The Bible is it's own best Commentary. Cross reference the Jeremiah Quote with Isaiah 1:11-20.
Here's a brief commentary on the verses.

Is God finished with Israel? He denounces them as "Sodom and Gomorrah" (verse 10), judging their worship worthless, and their prayers an insult. But just when his tirade reaches its peak, God invites the Israelites to "come . . . reason" with him. Sins "like scarlet" shall be "as white as snow" (verse 18). God judges his people not to destroy them, but to bring them to repentance, forgiveness, and redemption.

Excerpted from Compton's Interactive Bible NIV
Copyright (c) 1994, 1995, 1996 SoftKey Multimedia Inc. All Rights Reserved
Worker Discouragement: The Numbers

Wednesday, February 25, 2004

And speaking of Anti-Semitism....
Nope, I don't mean Mel Gibson. Here's an excerpt....

It was not an event that any of the big newspapers saw fit to cover, but this past December, a draft United Nations resolution condemning anti-Semitism was quietly withdrawn by Ireland, its sponsor in the General Assembly. In a complicated exchange, Irish Foreign Minister Brian Cowen had promised the measure to his Israeli counterpart Silvan Shalom, but in the end Cowen refused to carry out his side of the bargain, pointing to a lack of consensus on the issue. (Several Arab and Muslim states had objections.) Thus went by the boards what would have been the first-ever General Assembly resolution dealing directly with the problem of anti-Semitism.

And thus, too, has gone much else at the UN in the name of human rights. Indeed, for veteran observers of the goings-on at Turtle Bay, the outcome of the latest session was just one more episode in a long and ugly history. Even when judged against the hypocrisy with which the UN has frequently treated its own founding principles—principles of tolerance, human dignity, and national self-determination—the international body’s abiding hostility to the just claims of Israel and the Jewish people remains a special, and especially egregious, case.

Tuesday, February 24, 2004

Rich Lowry On The New Great Awakening.
There could very well be a Perfect Storm developing, as the radical agenda of the left runs head on into the mainstream of Evangelical thought.
Bush Supports Marriage Amendment

The Gay Activists may very well have over reached. I'll be honest. I really don't care that much about gays living together. They have the right. They have the right to the same Civil rights and unions as straight couples.

I do not, however, want the agenda forced on me. That's the way San Francisco feels. And like the Gay Pride parade, it simply cements an unseemly, and downright scary image of the Homosexual. The only ones who want this image aret the gay activists, possibly the worst enemy the gay community has.

Friday, February 13, 2004

War Poetry
A Marvelous Collection of Poetry since the beginning of the war to the present.

My favorite:
We conclude this Day of Poetry for the War with Mark Lukey's "Stand," a sonnet that pays tribute to American resolve:

There comes a time to stand for what you know
To be the right, whatever be the cost.
Then get you up to speak, or do, or go
To fill some gaping breach, though you be tossed
From wave to towering wave, while dervish winds
Pull sail from yard, and blind your eyes with spray.
Do what you must; go fight beside your friends;
Do what you can, and more; go seize the day.
Fear not the foe, and damn the shores alee.
To win the fight, you must run to the van.
The valiant prisoner's heart may yet be free;
The coward's heart is chained, and never can.
Go fight your fight; you must do what you ought.
It's better fought and lost than never fought.

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

Yahoo! News - 'Passion' poised for heavenly Box Office.
More on Passion. Quickly becoming the most talked about movie in years.

Monday, February 09, 2004

Recruitment Problems in Iraq
Not for the United States, but for Al Qaida.
MSNBC - Who Killed Jesus?
Get ready for the Media blitz on Mel Gibson's new movie. The cover of Newsweek is just the beginning.
The War on the War on Terrorism

The President kept coming back yesterday to his being a wartime President. He is, in more ways than one. This article shows how:

But the general pattern has been that democratic leaders who wage war on terrorists, totalitarians, enemies of freedom, are guilty until proven innocent. Never more so than now, when alleged intelligence failures, alleged deceptions, are all the rage. The Free World turns in, snarling, upon itself.

Meanwhile, ricin shows up in the U.S. Senate. Eight flights from Europe to the U.S. get canceled in one day because of intelligence tips that they'll get blown to bits. Bombers kill forty in Moscow; seventy in twin attacks in Kurdistan. A bus bombing in Jerusalem hardly registers anymore. Ho-hum, I never promised you a rose garden. But Bush and Blair are in the dock, and grim committees are searching every cranny of what they knew, when they knew it, and what they did.
The Corruption of Power: The Republican Majority
Power Corrupts. Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely.
When the Democrats had the majority in Congress, their corruption grew, and eventually led to them losing the majority in 1994. It's a lesson the Republicans would do well to heed.
Peggy Noonan on Bush's Interview with Russert
Good explanation. Bush did not, and does not, come off well in interviews. Peggy discusses why.

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

FT November 2003: The Episcopalian Preference
I have no better explanation of how the ECUSA came to the decisions it has in the past few months. A wonderful explanation of liberalism in America.

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

No better political site on the web. It's a permanent link on the right, always has been, always will be.