My Christmas Gift This Year

 

If you have read my most recent post you will know that a tin of Turkish Delight is as welcome in my house as a two-year-old fruitcake.

My wife, the beloved Mrs. Pessimist, is very outgoing and tenacious in developing and maintaining friendships. Over the past few years, she has expanded and enriched those connections by being eager to hear about any book, movie, or TV series that her friends have enjoyed. She shares a long list of her favorite shows and books to anyone interested.

Almost all of her friends are eager to engage in discussions about books and movies. What she has become very discouraged about is that there is one show that has impacted her more than anything she has ever seen and none of her many, many friends want to engage with her in any way about it. Mentioning the series brings total silence and awkwardness. What is this frightening series?

“The Chosen.”

Why is this show so terrifying? I have my ideas but I would like to hear yours. Both from those of you who have watched the first seasons and those who have not.

I gave my wife a bracelet for Christmas. She told me that the gold jewelry I had given her in the past didn’t match the rings and necklaces she most enjoys and wanted something silver instead. I had a silver bangle made that had her name engraved in large letters. Instead of her birth name I had “Chosen” engraved.

She can tell people who ask that this is the name that G-d calls her.

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  1. JoelB Member
    JoelB
    @JoelB

    The Chosen is a wonderful series. I have never heard it described as terrifying. Could it be that it challenges the beliefs, or disbeliefs, of these friends? 

    • #1
  2. Justin Other Lawyer Coolidge
    Justin Other Lawyer
    @DouglasMyers

    You pose an interesting question, and I suspect that people’s reasons for lack of interest in discussing The Chosen will vary.  One small subset of Christians I’m often around takes serious objection to depictions of Jesus–they view it as a violation of the Second Commandment.  Therefore, they would avoid the series on conscience grounds.  Although I see their point, I don’t share their conviction.

    It seems reasonable that some unbelievers would find the whole thing kind of silly because they don’t believe what’s in the Bible anyway.  I honestly don’t know whether many in the observant Jewish community would find the series at least interesting.  I think the creator of The Chosen tried really hard to accurately depict life in first century Palestine among the Jewish population, so maybe modern-day Jews would be intrigued.

    For me, I’d be happy to discuss the show with someone who watches it (I think I’ve seen maybe half a dozen episodes), but I find it difficult to watch accounts of biblical events without being hypercritical of the dialogue and depiction of extra-biblical events.  I realize if someone is going to create such a show, they need to add dialogue and stuff that happened, but I find myself questioning whether such conversations/events are plausible or whether they contradict any important doctrine of Christianity, etc.  So I probably wouldn’t be a great one to engage in discussions about The Chosen either.

    • #2
  3. navyjag Coolidge
    navyjag
    @navyjag

    Good story. Don’t watch TV except for football and old war movies but the wife giving me her list of books to read on the IPad. She knows I only want WWII, Viet Nam and military or spy stories with lots of violence. Especially Navy carrier stories with napalm. So about half are pretty good. 

    • #3
  4. Manny Coolidge
    Manny
    @Manny

    Your wife sounds like a great person. Hopefully she keeps evangelizing her friends. 

    • #4
  5. JoelB Member
    JoelB
    @JoelB

    In my opinion, The Chosen captures what Jesus was like (as I understand Him) better than any other movie or series that I have seen. It is not word for word from the Bible as some are, but fleshes out the story, not with what actually happened, but what could have happened.

    There is nothing in the Bible to suggest that Matthew might have been on the autism spectrum, or that Jesus healed the thief who robbed the man on the road to Jericho. There is nothing that suggests that Nicodemus had tried to exorcise the demons from Mary Magdelene unsuccessfully or that Jesus talked to the Roman praetor in his office. 

    Yet, all these historically fictional circumstances have been woven together to present a picture of how Jesus might have handled the day to day situations of life and how various individuals’ lives came to intersect with His. The Bible has very little of the back story of most of these people.

    My wife has been binge-watching the series for the past few days. She laughed at the man who was healed at the pool of Bethesda gleefully watching his legs work as he walked. It makes you wonder how you might react to this kind of miracle in your life. 

    The series is not Holy Writ, but it is a great springboard for thought and discussion and is very respectful in its handling of events recorded in the Gospels.

    • #5
  6. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Why does the life of Christ depicted in The Chosen make people uncomfortable? Maybe because Jesus doesn’t want us to be comfortable (and I’m often exceedingly uncomfortable in many ways). He wants us to be holy. 

    Confession: I haven’t watched any of the series either. Part of it is my concern with the depiction of Christ not comporting with my religious/religion’s conception of him. It’s a risky proposition.

    I am, however, doing a beautiful study with my Small Catholic Community by Ascension Press called Jesus: The Way, the Truth, and the Life by some of my favorite apologist-teachers. The presenters filmed it in the Holy Land at the sites where Jesus lived, ministered, and performed his miracles culminating in the Resurrection. It’s very well done and highly recommended. 

    • #6
  7. Painter Jean Moderator
    Painter Jean
    @PainterJean

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Why does the life of Christ depicted in The Chosen make people uncomfortable? Maybe because Jesus doesn’t want us to be comfortable (and I’m often exceedingly uncomfortable in many ways). He wants us to be holy.

    Confession: I haven’t watched any of the series either. Part of it is my concern with the depiction of Christ not comporting with my religious/religion’s conception of him. It’s a risky proposition.

    I am, however, doing a beautiful study with my Small Catholic Community by Ascension Press called Jesus: The Way, the Truth, and the Life by some of my favorite apologist-teachers. The presenters filmed it in the Holy Land at the sites where Jesus lived, ministered, and performed his miracles culminating in the Resurrection. It’s very well done and highly recommended.

    WC, as a fellow Catholic I too had some reservations about The Chosen. (And I must also confess that I had seen a short clip or two, and I much preferred Jim Caviezel as Jesus!) But some Catholic friends of mine highly recommended it, and so I finally started to watch it one night on my phone when I couldn’t sleep. I liked it very much. It attempts to add some possible backgrounds to figures in the Gospel, but does not do so in a way that contradicts Scripture or that seeks to add to it. One concern I have is that given how many  derive their understanding of history from the entertainment industry (I suspect lots of people now think Salieri caused Mozart’s death), it’s possible that many will take the fictional backstories as actual fact. There are some things I didn’t like:  the dialogue is meant to be accessible to modern Americans, and so it’s breezy and contemporary, but with accents overlaid – why have the accents if the underlying language is modern?! And somehow I think Jesus’s actual presence would have had a more profound effect on those who believed in him and walked with him. Not that they would have been perfected and thus sin no more, but I doubt Mary Magdalene would have gone back to her former life of dissolution for a while as is shown, and I would hope there would have been less hostility between Matthew and some of the Apostles. I have a few other quibbles….but it’s well worth watching!

    • #7
  8. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    the dialogue is meant to be accessible to modern Americans, and so it’s breezy and contemporary,

    Ugh, not sure I could handle it. This has ruined more than one movie/series for me. It’s so jarring when the language doesn’t comport with the place and time (the movie Titanic, for example), it takes me completely out of the story. 

    • #8
  9. Painter Jean Moderator
    Painter Jean
    @PainterJean

    As for Southern Pessimist’s question – why is this series so terrifying  – I think that our secular, post-Judeo/Christian culture is uncomfortable at best with expressions and depictions of Christianity, hostile at worst. A culture that feels it necessary to ban Nativity scenes on public property – how terrifying is a Nativity scene? – is not going to want to watch any depictions of Christianity. Why? Because our culture doesn’t like the concept of sin, and really doesn’t like the concept that we are obliged to follow a moral code and are called to a high standard of personal behavior. The Chosen carries a message our culture does not want to hear.

    • #9
  10. Painter Jean Moderator
    Painter Jean
    @PainterJean

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    the dialogue is meant to be accessible to modern Americans, and so it’s breezy and contemporary,

    Ugh, not sure I could handle it. This has ruined more than one movie/series for me. It’s so jarring when the language doesn’t comport with the place and time (the movie Titanic, for example), it takes me completely out of the story.

    I hear you, but I do think that you would be able to get past it as it is a very compelling series.

    • #10
  11. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Painter Jean (View Comment):

    As for Southern Pessimist’s question – why is this series so terrifying – I think that our secular, post-Judeo/Christian culture is uncomfortable at best with expressions and depictions of Christianity, hostile at worst. A culture that feels it necessary to ban Nativity scenes on public property – how terrifying is a Nativity scene?** – is not going to want to watch any depictions of Christianity. Why? Because our culture doesn’t like the concept of sin, and really doesn’t like the concept that we are obliged to follow a moral code. The Chosen carries a message our culture does not want to hear.

    Agreed. It’s the moral demands made by religion that make people uncomfortable, as intended. It’s why our society is so atomized and everyone does what is right in his own eyes. . .

    **And Christmas trees. Don’t forget Christmas trees are getting people killed. 

    • #11
  12. JoelB Member
    JoelB
    @JoelB

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    why have the accents if the underlying language is modern?

    I balked at this a bit at first too, but I changed my mind. The Israeli (?) accent provides a uniformity among the palestinian Jews in the series. I remembered the time while watching another Jesus movie where John the Baptist in a heavy brogue spoke of the r-r-r-roth! to come. It rather took me out of the illusion for a moment.  Perhaps a Brit or an Indian might find the portrayal more appealing and not just another “American” show. (I find it interesting that the Romans tend to sound quite American – fitting for the superpower of the era.)

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    I doubt Mary Magdalene would have gone back to her former life of dissolution for a while as is shown

    This one had me thinking too, but it is not an uncommon thing today, particularly among those with addictions. I think this is food for thought, remembering that this television series is not Holy Writ. How does Jesus, how do we, deal with the backslider today?

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    I would hope there would have been less hostility between Matthew and some of the Apostles.

    Several times throughout the Gospels – even at the last supper, it is related that the disciples were arguing among themselves about who would be greatest among them. These differences must have seemed very important to them at the time. I doubt that it all happened as portrayed, but the disciples were as human as we are with similar faults and insecurities. To my way of thinking, it must have been hard for them to get their minds around the whole God-Man identity of Jesus. The Gospels tell us that at this point the Holy Spirit who would reveal all things to them had not been sent. 

    These are a few of my thoughts, and you might think differently and be more right than I am. 

    • #12
  13. Southern Pessimist Member
    Southern Pessimist
    @SouthernPessimist

    I think one reason that that The Chosen is terrifying is that it gets as close as we can, within the artistic experience, to portray how life-changing the Christian conversion is meant to be.  There is a reason that Born Again is part of the vernacular.

    • #13
  14. Southern Pessimist Member
    Southern Pessimist
    @SouthernPessimist

    Also, terrifying is probably not the right word for most people. I think it is appropriate to have skepticism of any project from modern media. I think most people are very wary of any project that seems likely to be ideologically driven. I was afraid that the series would be a watered down feel good depiction of bible stories that most of us know. This is certainly not that.

    • #14
  15. Painter Jean Moderator
    Painter Jean
    @PainterJean

    JoelB (View Comment):

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    why have the accents if the underlying language is modern?

    I balked at this a bit at first too, but I changed my mind. The Israeli (?) accent provides a uniformity among the palestinian Jews in the series. I remembered the time while watching another Jesus movie where John the Baptist in a heavy brogue spoke of the r-r-r-roth! to come. It rather took me out of the illusion for a moment. Perhaps a Brit or an Indian might find the portrayal more appealing and not just another “American” show. (I find it interesting that the Romans tend to sound quite American – fitting for the superpower of the era.)

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    I doubt Mary Magdalene would have gone back to her former life of dissolution for a while as is shown

    This one had me thinking too, but it is not an uncommon thing today, particularly among those with addictions. I think this is food for thought, remembering that this television series is not Holy Writ. How does Jesus, how do we, deal with the backslider today?

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    I would hope there would have been less hostility between Matthew and some of the Apostles.

    Several times throughout the Gospels – even at the last supper, it is related that the disciples were arguing among themselves about who would be greatest among them. These differences must have seemed very important to them at the time. I doubt that it all happened as portrayed, but the disciples were as human as we are with similar faults and insecurities. To my way of thinking, it must have been hard for them to get their minds around the whole God-Man identity of Jesus. The Gospels tell us that at this point the Holy Spirit who would reveal all things to them had not been sent.

    These are a few of my thoughts, and you might think differently and be more right than I am.

    I too thought it was amusing that the Romans sound so American!

    I think the writers were trying to get across two important points in portraying Mary as backsliding: One, that being a Christian does not remove the temptation to sin, but rather gives us the guidance and grace to persevere and to always try to live a more holy life; and two, that we are always welcome when we turn back – we are never rejected. So I get that. But I wish they could have chosen a different way to illustrate those points, because I thought that Mary’s degree of  backsliding tended to diminish what would have been the life-changing affect of being in the actual presence of God.

    Yes, I’m aware of the Gospel accounts of the Apostles squabbling, but – like Mary’s backsliding – my objection was to the degree of hostility. I mean, Peter is downright vicious and unforgiving to Matthew. I would like to think that his life would have changed enough to preclude that degree of nastiness.

    But – very enjoyable and thought-provoking.

    • #15
  16. CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill Coolidge
    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill
    @CarolJoy

    Justin Other Lawyer (View Comment):

    You pose an interesting question, and I suspect that people’s reasons for lack of interest in discussing The Chosen will vary. One small subset of Christians I’m often around takes serious objection to depictions of Jesus–they view it as a violation of the Second Commandment. Therefore, they would avoid the series on conscience grounds. Although I see their point, I don’t share their conviction.

    It seems reasonable that some unbelievers would find the whole thing kind of silly because they don’t believe what’s in the Bible anyway. I honestly don’t know whether many in the observant Jewish community would find the series at least interesting. I think the creator of The Chosen tried really hard to accurately depict life in first century Palestine among the Jewish population, so maybe modern-day Jews would be intrigued.

    For me, I’d be happy to discuss the show with someone who watches it (I think I’ve seen maybe half a dozen episodes), but I find it difficult to watch accounts of biblical events without being hypercritical of the dialogue and depiction of extra-biblical events. I realize if someone is going to create such a show, they need to add dialogue and stuff that happened, but I find myself questioning whether such conversations/events are plausible or whether they contradict any important doctrine of Christianity, etc. So I probably wouldn’t be a great one to engage in discussions about The Chosen either.

    I have noticed with regards to how some Christians make objections to fictionalized depictions of Jesus often do so as they’re following their ministers’ advice.

    And these ministers emphasize the sinfulness of breaking the Second Commandment.

    Often these same Christians worship their minister. They remain unaware of that.

    I am not talking about people who revere and respect whoever leads their congregation. But the faithful  who have begun to insist that the best people are the ones who diligently follow all sorts of newly made up religious laws.

    Three of the ones I find most offensive are:

    “It is important to refrain from debating one’s faith with others who are not of our congregation. Doing so endangers your faith and your ability to be close to God.”

    “One should refrain from celebrating Halloween as it is satanic.”

    “Christmas day is not a holiday that should be celebrated on the 25th of December, as it is obvious Jesus was born in the spring. Beware the infidels who continue to celebrate it in December.”

    The new rule that bugs me the most is the one I listed first. If you are not able to discuss your religious beliefs, to me it indicates a person who is grounded in neither logic or in belief strong enough to stand up to contrary thinking. And is that faith really faith?

    It also smacks of belonging to a cult.

     

     

    • #16
  17. Manny Coolidge
    Manny
    @Manny

    Painter Jean (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    the dialogue is meant to be accessible to modern Americans, and so it’s breezy and contemporary,

    Ugh, not sure I could handle it. This has ruined more than one movie/series for me. It’s so jarring when the language doesn’t comport with the place and time (the movie Titanic, for example), it takes me completely out of the story.

    I hear you, but I do think that you would be able to get past it as it is a very compelling series.

    I don’t have time to watch anything really, but the clips I’ve seen I’ve enjoyed.  It does bring Jesus and the stories down to earth, but I think the original synoptic Gospels (the first three) were intended to represent the vignettes as down to earth.  From what I’ve read the series fills in the dialogue a little more to contemporary narrative styles but it’s not supposed to violate the spirit of the passages.  

    • #17
  18. Manny Coolidge
    Manny
    @Manny

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    I doubt Mary Magdalene would have gone back to her former life of dissolution for a while as is shown, and I would hope there would have been less hostility between Matthew and some of the Apostles.

    I just posted my previous comment without reading this.  If they have Mary Magdalene as back sliding, that does question the story fidelity.  There is no suggestion of that in the Gospels.

    • #18
  19. Painter Jean Moderator
    Painter Jean
    @PainterJean

    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill (View Comment):

    Justin Other Lawyer (View Comment):

    You pose an interesting question, and I suspect that people’s reasons for lack of interest in discussing The Chosen will vary. One small subset of Christians I’m often around takes serious objection to depictions of Jesus–they view it as a violation of the Second Commandment. Therefore, they would avoid the series on conscience grounds. Although I see their point, I don’t share their conviction.

    It seems reasonable that some unbelievers would find the whole thing kind of silly because they don’t believe what’s in the Bible anyway. I honestly don’t know whether many in the observant Jewish community would find the series at least interesting. I think the creator of The Chosen tried really hard to accurately depict life in first century Palestine among the Jewish population, so maybe modern-day Jews would be intrigued.

    For me, I’d be happy to discuss the show with someone who watches it (I think I’ve seen maybe half a dozen episodes), but I find it difficult to watch accounts of biblical events without being hypercritical of the dialogue and depiction of extra-biblical events. I realize if someone is going to create such a show, they need to add dialogue and stuff that happened, but I find myself questioning whether such conversations/events are plausible or whether they contradict any important doctrine of Christianity, etc. So I probably wouldn’t be a great one to engage in discussions about The Chosen either.

    I have noticed with regards to how some Christians make objections to fictionalized depictions of Jesus often do so as they’re following their ministers’ advice.

    And these ministers emphasize the sinfulness of breaking the Second Commandment.

    Often these same Christians worship their minister. They remain unaware of that.

    I am not talking about people who revere and respect whoever leads their congregation. But the faithful who have begun to insist that the best people are the ones who diligently follow all sorts of newly made up religious laws.

    Three of the ones I find most offensive are:

    “It is important to refrain from debating one’s faith with others who are not of our congregation. Doing so endangers your faith and your ability to be close to God.”

    “One should refrain from celebrating Halloween as it is satanic.”

    “Christmas day is not a holiday that should be celebrated on the 25th of December, as it is obvious Jesus was born in the spring. Beware the infidels who continue to celebrate it in December.”

    The new rule that bugs me the most is the one I listed first. If you are not able to discuss your religious beliefs, to me it indicates a person who is grounded in neither logic or in belief strong enough to stand up to contrary thinking. And is that faith really faith?

    It also smacks of belonging to a cult.

     

     

    Wow, I had no idea that these kinds of ideas were widespread! The first is rather easily dismissed with 1 Peter 3:15 – “Always be prepared to make a defense to anyone who calls you to account for the hope that is in you, yet do it with gentleness and reverence.”

    As for the second, the word “Halloween” comes from the Catholic feast, the Solemnity of All Saints (“hallows”). “Halloween” is “All Hallows Eve”. It’s not satanic.  From very near the beginning of Christianity, it was a customary practice to solemnize the anniversary of a martyr’s death. The Solemnity of All Saints started out as a local feast day in Rome on May 13th, but was transferred to November 1st by Pope Gregory III in the 700s, and made a universal feast in the Church sixty years later by Pope Gregory IV. The various customs that have arisen around it are relatively new (last 500 years or so) and are not of satanic or pagan origin. I understand Christians not wanting to dress their kids up like witches or other unsavory characters, but that people do doesn’t originate in satanism. The Catholic parishes I have been involved with have kids’ parties with the kids dressing up as saints, which certainly helps to retain the original meaning.

    And there are good reasons for Christmas being celebrated December 25th. I won’t go into them because it’s too much typing, but it’s easy enough to do a search online and come up with an explanation.

    • #19
  20. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    he Catholic parishes I have been involved with have kids’ parties with the kids dressing up as saints, which certainly helps to retain the original meaning.

    Our parish used to have a “Walk with the Martyrs” Halloween celebration. The kids would form groups of five or ten and put on skits depicting the martyrs and, often, their martyrdom! The teenagers got very creative and loved the whole thing. Some of them even lost their heads! It attracted families from around the community, and not just Catholics!

    • #20
  21. Painter Jean Moderator
    Painter Jean
    @PainterJean

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    he Catholic parishes I have been involved with have kids’ parties with the kids dressing up as saints, which certainly helps to retain the original meaning.

    Our parish used to have a “Walk with the Martyrs” Halloween celebration. The kids would form groups of five or ten and put on skits depicting the martyrs and, often, their martyrdom! The teenagers got very creative and loved the whole thing. Some of them even lost their heads! It attracted families from around the community, and not just Catholics!

    Hah! I remember some good costumes too. One boy had a foil-covered “platter” around his neck, with fake blood where his neck met the platter – St. John the Baptist! A girl put on dark glasses and an appropriate dress and cloak, and carried a tray on which donut holes had been decorated to look like eyes – St. Lucy.

    • #21
  22. Painter Jean Moderator
    Painter Jean
    @PainterJean

    Manny (View Comment):

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    I doubt Mary Magdalene would have gone back to her former life of dissolution for a while as is shown, and I would hope there would have been less hostility between Matthew and some of the Apostles.

    I just posted my previous comment without reading this. If they have Mary Magdalene as back sliding, that does question the story fidelity. There is no suggestion of that in the Gospels.

    No, there’s no suggestion of that in the Gospels, but I don’t think it affects the fidelity per se because the series is not meant to be a faithful depiction of what is in the Gospels and nothing more. It’s a kind of “what if” – fictional back stories are given to the characters (though not Jesus). In the case of Mary, as I explained above I think they were trying to make a couple of points. I am a very orthodox Catholic and am very put off by depictions that offend my sense of the Gospels and of my Catholic faith, but I enjoyed the series (so far – I have watched season 1 and 2) and would recommend it. It was recommended to me by orthodox Catholic friends.

    • #22
  23. Sisyphus Member
    Sisyphus
    @Sisyphus

    The Chosen is fan fiction, and, like a lot of fan fiction, it pleases and disappoints at odd turns. Love Nicodemus trying and failing to give up his place in the world and follow Jesus. That was brilliantly played. Their John the Baptizer is totally cringe-worthy. There are small moments with the Theotokos that are inspired and touching. And who doesn’t love the Sons of Thunder? Covid interrupted season 2 very early, and once they had worked through the logistics of filming under Covid restrictions there appear to have been some rushed script changes. 

    It tries to be respectful. My traditional Catholic friends think Mary should be more majestic. “Manger,” I remind them. A lifetime of the Queen of Heaven chafing against the humble widow and mother. 

    The autistic Matthew thing does not work for me, but they have at least made it interesting and amusing. The Simon in a spiral of debt thing does kind of work for me, but he is too small and skinny. So far I have stayed with it in the rough patches and it has redeemed itself in other areas.

    I picked up the novelization of the first season and immediately put it down hard. The story had Simon as a fisherman in Bethlehem before the calling of the Apostles. Eighty-five miles south of the Sea of Galilee in territory where his Galilleean accent is so out of place it fingers him in the gospels as one of Jesus’ gang, leading him to deny Jesus three times. 

    There are many episodes I can watch over and over with pleasure and there is the hippy dippy baptizer episode that should be quietly set aside.

    • #23
  24. Flicker Coolidge
    Flicker
    @Flicker

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    There are some things I didn’t like:  the dialogue is meant to be accessible to modern Americans, and so it’s breezy and contemporary, but with accents overlaid

    Were they using a British accent?  I understand that all languages in the Bible are spoken with a British accent.

    • #24
  25. Manny Coolidge
    Manny
    @Manny

    Painter Jean (View Comment):

    Manny (View Comment):

    Painter Jean (View Comment):
    I doubt Mary Magdalene would have gone back to her former life of dissolution for a while as is shown, and I would hope there would have been less hostility between Matthew and some of the Apostles.

    I just posted my previous comment without reading this. If they have Mary Magdalene as back sliding, that does question the story fidelity. There is no suggestion of that in the Gospels.

    No, there’s no suggestion of that in the Gospels, but I don’t think it affects the fidelity per se because the series is not meant to be a faithful depiction of what is in the Gospels and nothing more. It’s a kind of “what if” – fictional back stories are given to the characters (though not Jesus). In the case of Mary, as I explained above I think they were trying to make a couple of points. I am a very orthodox Catholic and am very put off by depictions that offend my sense of the Gospels and of my Catholic faith, but I enjoyed the series (so far – I have watched season 1 and 2) and would recommend it. It was recommended to me by orthodox Catholic friends.

    Yeah, except that the notion that Mary Magdalene was a prostitute is incorrect. She was possessed by seven demons and cured.  There is a confusion that has lasted centuries between MM and Mary of Bethany and the unnamed sinful woman who washes Jesus’ feet with her tears.  Throughout history the three women have been blurred together.  MMwas never identified as a prostitute or one with sexual impurity.  I don’t know this site but it seems to have a solid understanding of the three women.  So if there were no sexual sins, there was no backsliding.  Unless you can backslide into possession of demons.

    • #25
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