Mr. Anderson,......meet Neo!!
Please understand,...I'm not saying
that The Matrix is
THE Messiah Movie! But it
is A Messiah Movie! And remember that The Matrix was released the weekend of Easter
1999 (and if you don't mind a rhetorical question,....What is it that is
celebrated at Easter.....?). That release date turns out to be very significant! Please keep that in mind as you consider these
points as parallels with the life story of Christ:
Matthew 1:24, 25 - And Joseph arose from his sleep, and did as the angel
of the Lord commanded him, and took her as his wife, and kept her a
virgin until she gave birth to a Son; and he called His name Jesus.
Neo is literally born into the real world from the womblike incubator
that he's existed in all his life! The imagery in the movie is even
symbolic of a birth - from an enclosed sac (complete with several
umbilical cords!), down the chute of the birth canal into the world!
in a Name?
Matthew 1:23 - "Behold,
the virgin shall be with child, and shall bear a Son, and they shall
call His name Immanuel", which translated means, "God with
Christ was also referred to as:
- the "Son of Man" (see at right and below in
- the Christ of God, His Chosen One;
and a host of other names.
in a Name?
Thomas Anderson - The name "Thomas" can be linked to
"Doubting Thomas", in that Neo never really believed that he
was The One. "Anderson" is a play
on "Son of Man", where the 'Ander-' finds its origins in the
New Testament Greek root 'andros' meaning man. Christ was often referred
to as the "Son of Man". "Neo" means "new"
(And that's exactly
WHY Neo was there - to make things "new", to bring about a
new world order).
"Neo" Anderson = New Son of Man
Neo is also an anagram: Neo - Eon - "One".
Mark 3:14 - And He appointed twelve, that they might be with Him, and
that He might send them out to preach.
Neo is brought into a group of people that are excited about his
presence; that are willing to believe he is "The One".
Tank: "If you ARE (the One),.....it's a very exciting time!"
John 1:29, 30, & 34 - The next day he saw Jesus coming to him and
said, "Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!
This is He on behalf of whom I said, 'After me comes a Man who has a
higher rank than I, for He existed before me'. And I have seen, and have
borne witness that this is the Son of God."
Neo's way was prepared by Morpheus who fervently believed and proclaimed
to everyone that Neo was "The One". And the Oracle told
Morpheus that HE would be the one to find "The
Morpheus: "We've done it, Trinity. We found him."
Trinity: "I hope you're right."
Morpheus: "I don't have to hope. I know it!"
Isaiah 7:14 - "Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign:
Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call
His name Immanuel."
Neo's coming was foretold by the Oracle (And we never saw an instance where she missed a prediction!
She always knew what was going on!).
Morpheus: "... the Oracle prophesied his return and that his coming
would hail the destruction of the Matrix and the war, bring freedom to
Matthew 4:18-20 - ...He saw two brothers, Simon, who was called Peter,
and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were
fishermen. And He said to them, "Follow me, and I will make you
fishers of men." And they immediately left the nets, and followed
There are two brothers in this crew on the Nebuchadnezzar. With Jesus,
there were 3 sets of brothers among the apostles. The fact that there
were siblings in this small group (especially brothers!) makes this
noteworthy as a parallel.
Matthew 26:15, 16 - ...and said, "What are you willing to give me
to deliver Him up to you?" And they weighed out to him 30 pieces of
silver. And from then on he began looking for a good opportunity to
Luke 22: 47, 48 - ...and the one called
Judas, one of the 12, was preceding them; and he approached Jesus to
kiss Him. But Jesus said to him, "Judas, are you betraying the Son
of Man with a kiss?"
The group is betrayed from within their own group by Cypher. Here, the
Christ allegory breaks down somewhat in that Neo is not really the
target of the betrayal as Jesus was with Judas (....if the Agents had only known!). The Agents,
unaware of Neo's real importance, want Morpheus, and that is the deal Cypher makes - to lead
Morpheus and the rest of the group (including Neo) into a trap where Morpheus can be
taken. Cypher's "payment": to be reinserted into The
Matrix for a "better" life.
of Death & Resurrection
Matthew 16:21 - From that time Jesus Christ began to show His disciples
that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised up on
the third day.
of Death & Resurrection
Neo's death & resurrection is predicted by the Oracle during Neo's
visit. She tells Neo that he has "the gift", but it looks like
he's waiting for something. Neo asks, "What?" And the Oracle
(very prophetically!) replies, "Your next life, maybe!....."
Matthew 20:28 - "...just as the
Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life
a ransom for many."
( to Neo): "Morpheus believes in you, Neo. And no one, not you, not
even me can convince him otherwise. He believes it so blindly that he's
going to sacrifice his life to save yours. You're going to have to make
a choice.....One of you is going to die. Which one will be up to you."
When Neo makes the decision to go "in" to rescue Morpheus, Neo
goes with the full knowledge that he will die ("One of you is going
to die."). The Zion mainframe codes must be protected at any cost,
or humanity is lost. With this act, Neo is, in effect, knowingly sacrificing
himself to save the rest of humanity.
Matthew 12:40 - "...for just as Jonah was three days and three
nights in the belly of the sea monster, so shall the Son of Man be three
days and three nights in the heart of the earth."
Luke 24: 4-7 - "...And it
happened that while they were perplexed about this, behold, two men
suddenly stood near them in dazzling apparel; and as the women were
terrified and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them,
"Why do you seek the living One among the dead? He is not here, but
He has risen. Remember how He spoke to you while He was still in
Galilee. Saying that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of
sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again."
Later, Neo IS killed by the authorities (the Agents), and, instead of 3
days, in less than 3 minutes he is resurrected! We know that showing the
passing of 3 actual days in this situation would've been impossible, so
how did they symbolically represent 3 days? The prevalent screen
placement of "303" should alert the sensitivities of any New
Testament-savvy audience member who is aware of the numerical
significance of the number three in the Gospels. This symbolic visual
cue is all the film needs to alert the audience members to the
significance of this momentary death.
force brought Neo back from the dead? LOVE! The instrument of that love
(and not necessarily the person as much as what the NAME signifies in
that in mind, let's look at that resurrection scene.....(the) Trinity
leans over Neo and kisses him (the proverbial "kiss of life"
or "breath of life"!) and Neo awakens! And the
first words Neo hears are in the form of a command from (the) Trinity, "Now,....get
up!" (Can't you imagine God breathing life back into Jesus, and the first
words Jesus hears are God's, "Now,....get up!")
Power After the Resurrection
Matthew 28:18 - And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, "All
authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth."
Power After the Resurrection
After his resurrection, Neo's mastery of the Matrix is total, and
the authorities (Agent Smith) are powerless against him.
Matthew 17:2 - And He was
transfigured before them; and His face shone like the sun, and His
garments became as white as light.
inhabits Agent Smith's body and causes the Agent to explode, Neo is
represented as an incandescent figure!
Mark 16:19 - So then, when the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, He was
received up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God.
At the end of the movie, Neo hangs up a telephone after telling the
Artificial Intelligence that this is the beginning of a world with no
boundaries and no borders; then he "ascends" into the sky. A
very fitting end!
a couple of other significant Biblical names: Zion, Nebuchadnezzar.
consider this dialogue when Choi and DeJour come to Neo's apartment (apartment
#101, no less!). Italicized dialogue shows pertinent pieces of dialogue that
forshadows what is to come:
Neo: What? What the hell?... Follow the white rabbit?... (knock, knock) Who is
Choi: It's Choi.
Neo: Yeah. Yeah. You're two hours late.
Choi: I know, it's her fault.
Neo: Got the money?
Choi: Two grand.
Neo: Hold on.
Choi: Hallelujah. You're my savior, man. My own personal Jesus Christ.
Neo: You get caught using that...
Choi: Yeah, I know. This never happened. You don't exist.
Choi: Something wrong, man? You look a little whiter than usual.
Neo: My computer, it... You ever have that feeling where you're not sure
if you're awake or still dreaming?
Choi: Mm, all the time. It's called Mescaline. It's the only way to fly. Hey,
it just sounds to me like you need to unplug, man. You know, get some R
and R. What do you think, DuJour? Shall we take him with us?
Neo: I can't, I have work tomorrow.
DuJour: Come on, It'll be fun. I promise.
Neo: Yeah, sure, I'll go.
Articles & Papers
The Matrix - A Cyberpunk
This is THE definitive exposition of the religious symbolism that flows through The
here for the PDF version of "The Matrix - A Cyberpunk Parable?" (384K)
Exile and Neo Restoration
a study of
messianic hope in the matrix
By Paul Fontana
in PDF format - 272K, about a 3:00 download at 56K
Paul wrote this while working towards his Masters of Theological Studies at Harvard
and has graciously permitted the publishing of his work in this on-line
God Is in the Details
"The sci-fi thriller is a veritable "Where's Waldo" of religious and mythological symbolism."
has something to say about the
Christian symbolism in
The Matrix in this
the question will certainly be asked: Was this intentionally done by the
Well,....the writers were asked just that question......
The following is an excerpt
from a November 6th, 1999 on-line
Larry and Andy Wachowski (the writers/directors of The Matrix):
Question from Starr22: Are all the religious
symbolism and doctrine throughout this movie intentional, or not?
WachowskiBros: Most of it is intentional.
polls are still open. Don't forget to vote!
polls open in a new window)