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Stuart S. Miller, Associate Professor of Hebrew, History, and Judaic Studies, University of Connecticut at Storrs, argues that both Jews and Christians have become victims of a distorted perception of first-century Palestine.

Read entire Miller Letter here.(PDF)

"... when the Pharisees told Jesus to silence his disciples, he answered them saying that if they became silent, 'the stones themselves would cry out.' Today I think he would say that if the Church became silent, Hollywood itself would cry out. "

Jodie Hahn

"Here we are, interpreting an interpretation of interpretations. How did we get here, to be interpreting Mel Gibson's interpretation of several interpretations of Jesus' death? I suspect that it is because interpretation is a dynamic process. And in the case of any Jesus movie, we are working with interpretations of the Bible, a text that is both enormously influential and very spare. The Bible is both authoritative and leaves a lot unsaid. Given its power to affect people's thinking and behavior, we do well to take good care about our methods and motives, and to attend carefully to the implications of our interpretations. "

". . . the early Christian community was not all in agreement about what about Jesus was particularly important for the record. That we have four different accounts in the Bible suggests that leaders of the early Christian church did agree that it was important not to tell Jesus ' story in only one way. That there are four gospels argues against attempting a single telling, least of all one that claims finally to represent 'the way it was.' "

Kristin Swenson-Mendez Assistant Professor of Religious Studies Virginia Commonwealth University

Emily Cheney, Assistant Professor of Religion, University of Georgia at Athens, finds the ending of Gibson's film less than compelling because so little attention is given to the resurrection.

Read entire Cheney Letter here.(PDF)

Sharon Pelton of St. Mary's Seminary challenges Gibson's portrayal of the Jewish priests, who would have avoided violation of purity laws and exposure to blood.

C. Leslie Reiter thinks that more violence was done to the text than in the film.

Read entire Reiter Letter here.(PDF)

Robert H. Gundry, Scholar-in-Residence and Professor Emeritus of New Testament and Greek, Westmont College, argues that Jesus scholars may be guilty of the very things they criticize.

Read entire Gundry Letter here.(PDF)


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