RESISTANCE RADIO! RESIST! the urge to hate.

And then he added, “It is what comes from inside that defiles you. For from within, out of a person’s heart, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, wickedness, deceit, lustful desires, envy, slander, pride, and foolishness.                                                                                         — Mark 7:20-22

When it concerns my work as a CSI, I do not speak about cases under investigation. I do not speak to the media about any aspect of my job unless it has been cleared by my chain of command. Careless words spoken about a Crime Scene Investigation can ruin its findings in court. Incomplete or slanted information about the findings to media can provoke public outcry and anger. This has been clearly evidenced in several police shootings in recent years.  Make no mistake, there are individuals, businesses, and authorities who use this tactic to turn a profit.

Recently, Amazon Prime Video promoted their original series The Man In The High Castle.  I must say I have enjoyed the series. It is well acted and produced. The writing is a good adaptation of the original work by Philip K. Dick.

The commercial (above), objectively, did its job. In a very similar way to the original War of the Worlds radio broadcast, it struck a nerve and brought a lot of attention to the product. Sometimes attention is not a good thing. If you’ve ever suffered inflamed nerves, you know how easily pain erupts with the trigger of the slightest touch.

I doubt Amazon’s intention was to spark the vitriol of hate that soon erupted in social media.  Those supporting the current president of the USA – Donald Trump perceived an attack of hatred and malice. Those not, perceived fear and ignorance in his supporters.

In a previous post about hate, in particular, mass-murderer Dylan Roof’s, I pointed out that each of us has the potential to let it rule our lives. In another post, I wrote about fear.  Our world, with its billions of people, varied cultures, religions, and personal preferences, has commonalities. The worst, hate and fear, take our childish hands and lead us down a dark tunnel.

Is it a coincidence that the original “resistance radio” was aired by Jesus Christ to a world of people very similar to us?

According to Jesus’ words, broadcast from a hill to a large crowd of listeners, what we take into our bodies does not spiritually defile us. The information our eyes and ears take in, benign or malicious, filters through our heart, then comes out in our words and actions. If our hearts are full of hate and fear, our actions will promote hatred and fear.  There is a lot of both in our world.

The only, and I repeat ONLY, way to stop fear and hate from controlling our words and actions is to change our hearts. Unless we do there is no hope for us. Fortunately, the original Resistance Radio DJ, Jesus Christ can change hearts, take away fear, and end hatred. Tune your receiver to Him.

As the Apostle John said: do not imitate or promote what is evil, but instead what is good. Don’t be so quick to pull the trigger that enflames hatred and fear.

What triggers do you have? How are they related to your hates and fears?

 

Full disclosure: I do have an Amazon Affiliate link on this site. This post, however, is not purposefully related to it.

The Good Confession

I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who testified the good confession before Pontius Pilate,…. —  1 Timothy 6:13

Ecce_homo_by_Antonio_Ciseri_(1)

The word interrogate, meaning to ask questions in a thorough and often forceful way, does not necessarily imply physical force.

I have witnessed many interrogations in my career. They have never been influenced by physical means. Often, revealing evidence from a crime scene investigation garners a confession of crime from a suspect.

In law enforcement a “good confession” is revelation of truth answering questions about a crime.  In 1 Timothy, the Apostle Paul refers to the “good confession” made in Pontius Pilate’s interrogation of Jesus Christ.

A CBC program, THE FIFTH ESTATE – The Confession, (video below) documents the 2010 interrogation of Russell Williams by Detective Staff Sergeant Jim Smyth. It is one of the best managed and beneficial interrogations in Canadian law enforcement history.

The 19th chapter of John’s Gospel narrates an interrogation between Pontius Pilate and a man brought before him as a criminal—Jesus of Nazareth. It is the most important interrogation in history.

The two interrogations both ended with “good confessions”. They have much in common and answer the same question. What happens when a man who believes he is in control is not?

 

This video contains graphic language and descriptions. 

Pontius Pilate was such a man. He was the Roman Prefect in control of Judea. A politically empowered authority who held the power to grant life or death. He was credited with many violent acts against the Jewish nation of Israel.

Another, a man of our time—Russell Williams, a Colonel holding a command position in the Canadian armed forces. He is a psychopath who believed he had similar authority to fulfill his desires.

The interrogation of Russell Williams lasted about 10 hours. Tire track and she impression evidence tying Williams to the residence of a rape and murder victim, Jessica Lloyd, is revealed to him (at 24:10 in the video above) in a confrontation.

  • At this point a visible difference is apparent.
  • The shoe and tire impression is revealed to him.
  • The atmosphere in the room changes.
  • Williams realizes he has no way out.
  • His perceived control of the situation is gone.
  • A bottomless void opens up in front of him and he realizes he is not in control. His interrogator is. He is lost.

I referenced how the Roman authorities knew exactly what was going on in Jerusalem in my previous post. Pontius Pilate was aware of the Nazarene but he did not know Him. Evidences were revealed to Pilate in a confrontation face to face with Jesus of Nazareth

  • He knew the Sanhedrin were manipulative and power hungry.
  • They did not respect Rome or his authority yet they feared this man Jesus of Nazareth and His following.
  • His wife warned him to have nothing to do with the judgement because of a dream.
  • He was amazed at the steadfast countenance of Jesus even after being flogged.
  • The Sanhedrin advised him that Jesus claimed to be the Son of God. The atmosphere in the room changed.
  • The result of this brought fear to his heart. What if this really was the Son of God?
  • A bottomless void opens up in front of him and he realizes he is not in control. His prisoner is. He is lost.

While the two interrogations had differences in that the ones who believed themselves in control (a suspect in one and the interrogator in the other). They both found out they were not in control and realized who was.

Detective Jim Smyth offered Russell Williams a ray of hope in how he would be remembered (26:10 in the video). In truth this was a way of gaining more critical information.  Williams is currently serving two consecutive life sentences in prison.

Jesus did offer Pontius a ray of hope in that the greater sin belonged to those who had demanded his crucifixion. Pontius Pilate faded into history.  I cannot imagine Pontius could not have realized the truth before his meeting was done. Tradition holds he was either executed by the Roman Emperor Caligula or committed suicide. It is also believed he may have converted to Christianity after he met Jesus Christ.

The question remains for us all to answer. It is the same question placed on the hearts of the Williams and Pilate. What will you do when you realize you are not in control?

Mary Magdalene gets a bad RAP!

!!! RISEN, THE MOVIE  – SPOILER ALERT !!!

MARYMAGDALENE

My wife and I recently saw RISEN the movie. The acting was good, the sets were believable, and the story compelling. However, I have three grievances with the accounts portrayed (listed below in order least to greatest).  !!Spoiler Alert!!

  • When Christ ascended into heaven, after giving His apostles the great commission, it was portrayed as a blast off akin to a ballistic missile’s.
  • It is unlikely that Pontius Pilot and the Tribune were uninformed about Jesus. 
    • Jerusalem was not geographically large city.  It still isn’t.
    • To insure Pax Romana (Roman peace via iron law) they kept a tight grip on Jerusalem.
      • A legion was assigned to the area and Rome’s tax collectors and spies were abundant. Rome had a more than sufficient information gathering network in place.
        • Passover was a time rife with potential problems as the city swelled with visitors and Jewish national pride was high. Roman troops would be on elevated alert.
        • On the Sunday before Jesus’ crucifixion (Palm Sunday) He entered the city to a huge crowd proclaiming His greatness.
    • Jesus of Nazareth was known to those in power. King Herod knew of Him and had wanted to meet Him “for a long time”.
    • Jesus and His activities were common knowledge.
      • This is evidenced by the surprise of the two disciples on the road to Emmaus. They were shocked that someone would not know what had happened in Jerusalem.

And the one that bothers me the most: Mary Magdalene got a bad RAP.

In my line of work, “RAP” is an acronym for: Record of Arrest and Prosecution. A “RAP sheet” is the documented history of a person’s arrests and the following decisions a court has made regarding them. A repeat offender of the law is often referenced as having “a RAP sheet a mile long”.

Mary the Magdalene was a Jewish woman hailing from the bustling seaport of Magdala.  She is called “Magdalene” as Jesus was called “Nazarene”. He was known to come from Nazareth.

In the movie Risen, it is heavily inferred that she was a prostitute well known by many of the Roman soldiers.

As far as I have found, tagging Mary Magdalene as a prostitute goes back to the Jewish Talmud (which portrayed her in a negative light) and a 591 AD sermon of Pope Gregory the Great. In it, Mary Magdalene was identified as the immoral woman in the book of Luke.  (In truth there is no strong evidence that the “immorality” referred to was prostitution. There are many types of immorality.)  This inference was further promoted in the 18th century when “Magdalene” houses or asylums were opened for wayward women to find shelter and rehabilitation.

I am not Pope-bashing. I assume he held her in high esteem as a faithful, devoted servant of Jesus Christ. A sinner saved. And the Magdalene houses used her name only as an aspiration for women in their care. The Talmud, being a Jewish tome not proclaiming Jesus Christ the Messiah, logically would not speak kindly of Him or His disciples.

However scripture does not speak of her in a derogatory manner.  Mary Magdalene appears in the following scriptures Matthew 27:56 and 61, Matthew 28:1, Mark 15:40 and 47, Mark 16:1-9, Luke 8:2, Luke 24:10, John 19:25 and John 20:1-18.

The only description of her in any negative way lies in Luke 8:2. Which states “seven demons had gone out” of her by Jesus’ command.  Presuming that this made her a prostitute in turn suggests the demoniac must have been a male prostitute. After all a “legion” of demons was exorcised from him. I have never heard that implied though.

The other scriptures portray Mary Magdalene as faithful and devoted, desiring to be a follower and disciple of Jesus Christ. This interestingly is the one understandable commonality between her and the demoniac.

Call me old fashioned but, you don’t name a woman “whore” unless you have proof. Even then you don’t defame her. Christians are supposed to edify our fellow humans toward the Lord not vilify them to others.

There is no evidence to support Mary Magdalene being a prostitute. She doesn’t deserve the bad RAP she has been given. Even if she had been, her RAP sheet doesn’t exist. Any criminal history she had, has been cleared by our Lord and Savior.