It’s a powerful scene in the movie Kingdom of Heaven, in which newly-minted Christian knight Balian (Orlando Bloom) releases into freedom ‘Saracen’ knight Imad ad-Din al-Isfahani…on account of his quality.
Balian had fought and defeated what he thought was Imad’s master, over a horse found on the master’s desert plot. Balian ordered Imad to take him to Jerusalem, but then released him and gifted him the horse.
“Your quality will be known among your enemies, before ever you meet them,” Imad says, before riding off.
He recognized the goodness (or at least capacity for mercy?) in Balian.
I’d like to begin this post by expressing my regret that, after enduring the pain and emotional exhaustion of a wife battling cancer, a man lost his leg in an accident involving a falling crucifix. I begin with that expression of regret because I want to be clear that I don’t bear any negative feelings toward the man described in this CBS 2 story from New York.
It was tragic.
But in reading this story I was presented with a few theological considerations, perhaps prompted by poor or unclear writing: “David Jimenez believed his devotion to a crucifix was responsible for his wife being cured of cancer,” it says. This sentence infers the man had a devotion to a particular object, a crucifix. And in his desire to show reverence for that object, it dislodged and crushed his leg. What is this story saying, or not, about faith, and about God?