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Rabbi Cohen’s Easter message

By March 6, 2013February 18th, 2021No Comments

BBC uses Easter show about crucifixion to push gay agenda

Gay rights activist Ben Cohen will say on BBC Radio 4 that Jesus’ experience on the cross echoes his experience.
BBC controversy over Easter message likening treatment of gay people to crucifixion (telegraph.co.uk, 04 March 2013)
Like Jesus on the cross, the gay community know what it is to be abandoned (telegraph.co.uk, 04 March 2013)
BBC Easter message compares treatment of gay people with the crucifixion of Christ (dailymail.co.uk, 04 March 2013)
BBC report: Kids need to see more gay people on TV (07 January 2013)

Wed, 6 Mar 2013
The BBC will broadcast an Easter programme saying the way Britain treats gay people is like the crucifixion of Jesus.

Critics say the BBC has sunk “to a new low” by using the crucifixion to push a gay rights message.

The programme will be broadcast on Radio 4 as part of a series of lectures in the run up to Easter.

Activist
The lecture will be given by Benjamin Cohen – a gay rights activist and former Channel 4 News reporter.

He founded the gay news website, pinknews.co.uk, and has been campaigning for marriage to be redefined.

Mr Cohen will say that the words of Jesus on the cross, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”, echo his own experience of rejection as a gay man.

Liberal
But the Christian Institute has hit out at the BBC.

A spokesman said: “This is typical of the BBC’s socially liberal bias which tries to distort the Christian message at every turn.

“Using the crucifixion to push a gay rights agenda is a new low, even for the BBC. It’s yet another slap in the face to every Christian who pays the licence fee.”

The Christian Institute

Every individual has their own personal cross to bear. It is wrong to elevate any group, or category of individuals, as a special case deserving privileged treatment, as Mr Cohen does in the case of homosexuals, of whom he says he is one. Certainly, such materialistic self-seeking has nothing in common with the actions and outlook of Jesus. It might indeed, with justification, be said to be their antithesis.

Furthermore, Mr Cohen’s thesis, that homosexuals, bisexuals and transexuals are marginalized within society, is refuted by the very fact of his own broadcast on the BBC. These groups, or categories of individuals, while representing only a small minority of the population, receive grossly disproportionate attention from the ‘mainstream’ media; and moreover, attention which is couched in terms of uncritical adulation, in stark contrast to their self-appointed spokesmen’s claims of victimhood.

One might be forgiven for concluding that the so-called mainstream media are not in fact mainstream at all, but are in thrall to a set of extremists with a not-so-secret agenda of depraving our people and usurping the moral order.

Certainly, it ill behoves the ‘mainstream’ media, the churches and the rest of the Establishment of which they are part, to speak of tolerance, inclusiveness and respect, in view of the hatred they show for any, such as members of nationalist parties, who criticize and oppose their ideology of cultural subversion. What was it that Jesus said about hypocrites? “Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity” (Matthew 23:28).

We learn from the Gospel of St John that Jesus on the cross was not entirely abandoned by his disciples (John 19:26).  Did he feel that God the Father had abandoned him on the cross?

“My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” If these words are taken at face value do they not suggest that Jesus had despaired of God’s succour? And if he had despaired, then does it not cast grave doubt upon his divinity as the Son of God?   

The words attributed to Jesus on the cross “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” are actually the opening words of Psalm 22, with which Jesus, as a spiritual leader of Jews, would have been very familiar. Even in his childhood Jesus’ knowledge of Jewish law and his understanding of sacred texts had been remarked upon as exceptional (See Luke 2: 46-7).

A literal interpretation of these words of Jesus on the cross might suggest that he was in despair and felt that the Father had abandoned him. However, when examined in the context of the whole of Psalm 22, the words take on a very different meaning.

Jesus believed that his coming, his ministry and crucifixion had been foretold in various places within the Old Testament. This was culturally in keeping with the Jewish people’s ancient tradition of divine revelation and prophecy.

And certainly, some of the verses of Psalm 22 (composed by King David) do seem to describe details of Jesus’ crucifixion perhaps a thousand years later. For example: Verse 16 “For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet”; and Verse 18 “They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.” These verses were written long before crucifixion became a common form of execution in the land of Israel.

Psalm 22, although beginning with what sounds like a cry of despair, becomes progressively more hopeful and ends on a note of prophetic triumph, foretelling the renewed evangelism of the early disciples and the rise of the Church militant.  “A seed shall serve him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation. They shall come, and shall declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done this.” Verses 30-31.

By uttering the first words of Psalm 22, when on the cross, Jesus made a reference to the whole psalm, to its reference to him and his Passion and to the fulfilment of its prophecies.

This is how Peter boldly preached the gospel in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost and the seventh Sunday following the Resurrection:

Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know:

Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:

Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it. 

Acts 2: 22-24

And this is how Peter ended his address: 

“Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.” Acts 2:36.

The seed had been sown and begun to germinate.