Saturday, April 3, 2010

He's Alive!

"Jesus Music - 'He's Alive' - Don Francisco - Easter"

NoneBeforeNoneAfter, YouTube (February 17, 2007)
video, 4:59

"http://www.rockymountainmin... Fans are encouraged to visit the Site...."

This music video is Don Francisco's "He's Alive!" with a sort of slide show from "Jesus" (1979). I like the movie: John Heyman didn't make the (by then) standard-issue "Bible epic", and had taken the time to read what Luke had to say about Jesus of Nazareth. I think "The Passion of the Christ" (2004) does a somewhat better job of showing the torture and death of my Lord.

I'm not faulting Mr. Heyman, by the way: special effects tech in 1979 wasn't what it was six years ago, and American audiences probably wouldn't have reacted well to seeing a "spiritual" man being tortured to death.

Some folks didn't react all that well in 2004, for that matter.

Can't say that I blame them. The "gentle Jesus, meek and mild" take on my Savior is a nice, comfortable approach that's been fairly popular for quite a while. And what happened during the hours leading up to Jesus being nailed in place and left to die on Golgotha was - messy.

If a person pays attention to Catholic traditions during Holy Week, though, what actually went down almost 2,000 years ago becomes a little more apparent. I've written about this before, recently:
"Maundy Thursday, or Holy Thursday, Mass is a pretty big deal for Catholics. It marks and re-presents the Last Supper, the institution of the Eucharist, and the start of events which ended in the crucifixion and death of my Lord.

"Apparently ended, I should say. Most people, when they've been tortured to death, stay dead. Jesus of Nazareth didn't: which made quite an impression on the surviving Apostles...."
("Maundy Thursday, Holy Thursday: Yeah, It's a Pretty Big Deal" (April 1, 2010))
Jesus is gentle, by the way. He is also meek and mild, although I think merchants in the Temple might have found that hard to believe when he did some housecleaning there. (Matthew 21:12, 13, and see that chapter's footnotes 10, 11, 12)
"...She said they might have moved Him in the night
"And none of us knows where
"The stone's been rolled away
"And now His body isn't there

"We both ran toward the garden
"Then John ran on ahead
"We found the stone and empty tomb
"Just the way that Mary said
"But the winding sheet they wrapped Him in
"Was just an empty shell
"And how or where they'd taken Him1
"Was more than I could tell."

"Oh something strange had happened there
"Just what I did not know
"John believed a miracle
"But I just turned to go
"Circumstance and speculation
"Couldn't lift me very high
" 'Cause I'd seen them crucify him
"Then I saw him die...."
("He's Alive!" (Don Francisco), from Risa Song Lyrics Archive)
I think the actor who portrayed this apostle, making a quick examination of the empty tomb, got the sandbagged look about right:

From "Jesus" (1979), John Heyman, copyright Inspirational Films Inc.
(From "Jesus" (1979), Inspirational Films Inc., used w/o permission)

I think it's easy to forget that the folks who had watched their leader die by a quite unpleasant sort of execution didn't know what was coming.

Now, after almost two millennia, followers of Jesus are - or should be - familiar with what's recorded in:There's more - to the song and Jesus' life - but it's getting late.

Related posts:
I've embedded this video in a blog post before:
1 Not quite Don Francisco's words, in this recording.

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