“I Die Like Jesus Christ”

choseunghui.gifCho Seung-Hui.

One week ago, only a handful of people knew that name.  Today, most of the world does.

On the morning of April 17, 2007, Cho chose to unleash his own pent-up anger on the campus of Virginia Tech University in Blacksburg, Virginia.  After killing his first two victims in a dormitory, Cho mailed a package to the National Broadcasting Company in New York City.  The package contained photographs, videos, and writings.

In one of the videos, Cho says “Thanks to you, I die like Jesus Christ, to inspire generations of the weak and the defenceless people.”  In another video however, Cho states that “Jesus loves crucifying me.”

Because this killer compared himself to my Savior, I feel compelled to speak out.  It is important to me that those in the general public know the truth about the Person and character of Jesus Christ.  I take issue with both of his statements as a distortion of Christianity.

First, Cho Seung-Hui did not die like Jesus Christ.

Cho died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.  He committed suicide.  Jesus Christ died as a result of execution by Roman crucifixion.

Cho died as a result of his own sin, just as all humans die.  Jesus Christ died as a result of the sins of the world, not his own sin because He was sinless. (Romans 6:23; 2 Corinthians 5:21)

Cho claims to have died “to inspire generations of the weak and the defenceless.”  Jesus Christ died to provide eternal life and forgiveness to sinners. (John 3:14-18)

Cho died following a murdering spree of innocent college students.  Listen to the contrasting description of Jesus Christ at his execution: 

“He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so He opened not His mouth…who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously” (Isaiah 53; 1 Peter 2)

Second, Jesus does not love to “crucify” people.

It’s interesting that Cho used the term “crucify” because Jesus Christ does indeed call His followers to “take up their cross.” (Matthew 16:24)  However, what Jesus means and what Cho means are as different as night and day.

Jesus said that it was NOT His desire that anyone should be damned. (2 Peter 3:9)  Instead, He calls for people to turn from their sin and embrace His forgiveness, trusting in His sacrifice on their behalf. (Romans 10:9-10)  The fact is: we die because of our sin (Romans 3:23, 6:23).  Even though this universal truth exists, Jesus does not desire it on anyone.  He would rather see people turn from their lives of sin and turn to the life He offers, eternal life.  Here’s the bottom line: Jesus died on a cross so that we would not have to.  His sacrifice was much more than the physical suffering He endured at the hands of the Roman Empire; it was a spiritual sacrifice.  He took on the penalty for our sin and paid it by the shedding of His blood.  That’s the real meaning of the cross–not just that a good man died, but that the God-Man died for us. (Romans 5:8)

When Jesus tells His followers to take up their cross, He is stating that the Christian life is not an easy one.  Many will reject the message of Jesus Christ.  Many Christians have died for their faith. (2 Timothy 3:12; 1 John 3:13)  The difference between what Jesus calls us to and what Cho claims Jesus did to him is simple.  Cho says Jesus put a cross on him and, in part, made him do what he did at Virginia Tech.  Jesus asks His followers to voluntarily give themselves as a living sacrifice, not in acts of evil and hate but in acts of servanthood and love. (Philippians 2:5-8)  Cho’s message of rebellion and anarchy does not even begin to compare to Christ’s message of humility, forgiveness, and sacrifice.  They are diametrically opposed to one another.

I’m sorry that Cho died.  I would have liked the opportunity to share with him the true meaning of the cross of the love of my Savior.  It had the power to radically change his life.  His statements, however, about the One who died for me must be challenged and denounced.  They are untrue and unfit to be said of Jesus Christ.

Here is my manifesto:

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. (Galatians 2:20)

If you would like to learn more about how you can be forgiven and have peace with God, drop me an email or click here.


One response to this post.

  1. Brillian post, thanks for pointing to the Jesus of the Bible.



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