11 quotes from Jim Caviezel, the actor who played Christ

Actor Jim Caviezel is most known for his role as Jesus Christ in the 2004 Mel Gibson movie The Passion of the Christ. I haven't watched the film (I plan to on Holy Week), but most of the people I know who watched had emotional reactions watching it. The story is about the last day of Christ and his crucifixion. It has been said to be a violent film, but it wanted to show the brutality of his execution. It was a harrowing physical and emotional experience for the actor, who endured and suffered pain during the shoot, dislocating his shoulder when carrying the cross and accidentally whipped by the actors playing Roman soldiers.

Outside acting, Caviezel is a devout Christian. Interesting to note that the director himself told him that in taking on the role, he may damage his career. But it was the wise actor who replied, "We have to carry our own crosses." Gibson said that he felt he was being 'called' to make this film for many years.

I happened to watch this interview of Caviezel, and I found it so moving. He isn't a pastor but he is a mature Christian, and he knew the consequences of his role. Though the Passion was a commercial success, it did affect his acting career and he claims it has made him a 'Hollywood outcast'.

Interesting to note that it seems like the interviewer in the video below is talking in a joking manner, asking if during the torture scenes Caviezel was 'wanting some aspirin'. Instead we get a serious answer: he felt undeserving of the role and he thought of all his sins. He said he wanted people to see Jesus, not the actor.

Since I copied so many of his quotes here, I just typed and posted them here because they wouldn't fit in one Facebook post. I am so moved by what he said about fame: in this world, we should strive to obey God and not be too attached to worldly things.

"My talent came from God, not from man."

"We are called to carry our cross, if you don't carry your own cross you will be crushed by the weight of it."

"Everyone wants the Ressurection, nobody wants the suffering. But can anyone get the gold medal without suffering?"

"We had a part in handing Christ over to death when we contribute to sin."

"Freedom exists not to do what you like but having the right to do what you ought."

"We need Christians who will look death in the face."

"God never sends a man to hell. People choose this place."

"Set yourself apart from this corrupt generation, my brothers and sisters, you weren't made to fit in, you were born to stand out!"

"You can't be an Olympic world champion by training once a week, you have to take Jesus Christ into your life every day."

"Some of you have accepted Christ but keep accepting him. Every time we sin we deny him."

He ends with this message:

"Your name may not appear down here in the world's hall of fame. In fact you might be so unknown that no one knows your name. The praise of men may not come your way but don't forget God has rewards for you He will hand out one day. These crowds on Earth, they will soon forget. When you're there at the top they will cheer like mad until you fall and the praise will stop. Not God! He never forgets, and you're in his hall of fame. Just by believing in his Son, forever there's your name. I wouldn't trade my name, however small, its written beyond the stars in that celestial hall. For all the famous names here on Earth or the glory they share, I'd rather be an unknown here and have my name up there!"

What a beautiful message. If you have half an hour free, you will not regret watching it.

Note: It has been reported that there is a planned sequence to the Passion of the Christ, entitled Resurrection

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