Guerilla Christ (1969)
Off-set print poster
“Who do people say I am?” The question Jesus posed to his disciples in Mark 8:27 (NIV) has been answered over two millennia in ways as varied as the political or social agendas of those who claim to follow Christ. He has been presented both as the defender of the divine right of kings and as the armed liberator of the downtrodden and oppressed. Guerilla Christ is the work of noted Cuban Graphic Artist Alfredo Rostgaard and pays homage to Colombian Revolutionary Camilo Torres, a Roman Catholic priest who left the church in the 1960s to join the Marxist National Liberation Army (ELN), claiming, “If Christ were alive today, he would be a guerilla.” Torres was killed, ambushing a Colombian military patrol in 1966, and became a martyr of the Liberation Theology movement. Using armed struggle in this way to serve the good seems to me to run counter to Christ’s message to “love your enemies [and] do good to those who hate you” in Luke 6:27 (NIV). Not that we should grow too comfortable either with notions of the gentle Jesus, meek and mild. Christ makes the bold claim in Matthew 10:34 (NIV) that "I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.” He knew his message of God’s Kingdom of justice and truth would force those who followed him to make tough choices, placing them in conflict with family, friends and the cultural values of their day. A sword, then. An automatic rifle, today. Whatever weapon you choose doesn’t really matter. The meaning of the metaphor remains the same and is as threatening to the status quo, now, as it ever was.
From The Holy Bible: New International Version [NIV] (New York Bible Society International: 1973)