Christian Bale claims Moses was 'barbaric,' 'schizophrenic'

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Christian Bale Claims Moses Was 'Barbaric,' 'Schizophrenic'


Actor Christian Bale has ignited a religious row after claiming the Hebrew prophet Moses was a barbaric schizophrenic.

The 40-year-old plays the religious icon in the upcoming biblical epic "Exodus: Gods and Kings." While he says he knew nothing about Moses before preparing for the role, he believes his research has given him a peek inside Moses's head.

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Christian Bale claims Moses was 'barbaric,' 'schizophrenic'
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 02: Actor Christian Bale and Sibi Blazic arrive at the 86th Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood & Highland Center on March 2, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 02: Actor Christian Bale (L) and Sibi Blazic attends the Oscars held at Hollywood & Highland Center on March 2, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
Actor Christian Bale, right, waves at photographers during the photo call for the film American Hustle during the International Film Festival Berlinale, in Berlin, Friday, Feb. 7, 2014. (AP Photo/Axel Schmidt)
Actors Bradley Cooper and Christian Bale arrive at the press conference for the film American Hustle during the International Film Festival Berlinale, in Berlin, Friday, Feb. 7, 2014. (AP Photo/Axel Schmidt)
Actor Christian Bale is interviewed as he arrives on the red carpet for the film American Hustle during the International Film Festival Berlinale, in Berlin, Friday, Feb. 7, 2014. (AP Photo/Axel Schmidt)
Actor Christian Bale and wife Sibi Blazic attend the premiere of "American Hustle" at the Ziegfeld Theatre on Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013 in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
In this photo released by Sony Pictures, from left, Jennifer Lawrence, as Rosalyn Rosenfeld, insists on smelling her nail polish, Elisabeth Rohm as Dolly Polito, Christian Bale as Irving Rosenfeld and Jeremy Renner as Mayor Carmine Polito oblige inside Baron's Restaurant in Columbia Pictures' "American Hustle." In the movie, which opened Friday, Dec. 20, 2013, Renner’s character goes corrupt as a means to help his city and state. (AP Photo/Sony - Columbia Pictures, Francois Duhamel)
Actor Christian Bale arrives for the screening of the film The Flowers Of War (Jin Ling Shi San Chai) at the 62 edition of the Berlinale, International Film Festival in Berlin Monday, Feb. 13, 2012. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
Actor Christian Bale poses for the photo call of the film 'The Flowers Of War' (Jin Ling Shi San Chai) at the 62 edition of the Berlinale, International Film Festival in Berlin, Monday, Feb. 13, 2012. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
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During an interview with reporters last Friday, the Academy Award winner said, "I think the man was likely schizophrenic and was one of the most barbaric individuals that I ever read about in my life. He's a very troubled and tumultuous man who fought greatly against God, against his calling. He was a very troubled, tumultuous man and mercurial."

Not surprisingly, some have taken offense. Christian screenwriter Brian Godawa wrote on his blog that Bale's comments reflected nothing but his own bigotry. "Yes, Moses murdered a man," he wrote. "And he had a character arc that went from being adopted and raised as a pagan Egyptian to a conversion to his troubled and tumultuous faith. [...] And he even had arguments with God. But schizophrenic? Barbaric? Really?"

Other religious scholars are defending Bale. Jonathan Kirsch, who published "Moses: A Life," believes Moses is shown to be capable of appalling violence and, at times, appears to have different personalities.

Kirsch also offers that this can be because the Bible is written by multiple authors who wrote at different times with different motives.

"Exodus: Gods and Kings" was bound to anger people eventually, as director Ridley Scott has disparaged religion in the past. Back in 2012, he told Esquire magazine that "the biggest source of evil is of course religion."

"Exodus: Gods and Kings" hits theaters this December.

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