Skip to comments.Catholics, Protestants, and Immaculate Mary
Posted on 12/08/2012 2:24:39 PM PST by NYer
Do Catholics worship Mary? This question is as old as the Protestant Reformation itself, and it rests, like other disputed doctrinal points, on a false premise that has been turned into a wedge: the veneration of Mary detracts from the worship of Christ.
This seeming opposition between Mary and Christ is symptomatic of the Protestant tendency, begun by Luther, to view the entirety of Christian life through a dialectical lens – a lens of conflict and division. With the Reformation the integrity of Christianity is broken and its formerly coherent elements are now set in opposition. The Gospel versus the Law. Faith versus Works. Scripture versus Tradition. Authority versus Individuality. Faith versus Reason. Christ versus Mary.
The Catholic tradition rightly sees the mutual complementarity of these elements of the faith, as they all contribute to our ultimate end – living with God now and in eternity. To choose any one of these is to choose them all.
By contrast, to assert that Catholics worship Mary along with or in place of Christ, or that praying to Mary somehow impedes Christ’s role as “the one mediator between God and men” (1 Tim 2:5) is to create a false dichotomy between the Word made flesh and the woman who gave the Word his flesh. No such opposition exists. The one Mediator entrusted his mediation to the will and womb of Mary. She does not impede his mediation – she helps to make it possible.
Within this context we see the ancillary role that the ancilla Domini plays in her divine Son’s mission. Mary’s is not a surrogate womb rented and then forgotten in God’s plan. She is physically connected to Christ and his life, and because of this she is even more deeply connected to him in the order of grace. She is, in fact, “full of grace,” as only one who is redeemed by Christ could be.
The feast of Mary’s Immaculate Conception celebrates the very first act of salvation by Christ in the world. Redemption is made possible for all by his precious blood shed on the cross. Yet Mary’s role in the Savior’s life and mission is so critical and so unique that God saw it necessary to wash her in the blood of the Lamb in advance, at the first moment of her conception.
This reality could not be more Biblical: the angel greets Mary as “full of grace” (Luke 1:28), which is literally rendered as “already graced” (kecharitōmenē). Following Mary, the Church has “pondered what sort of greeting this might be” for centuries. The dogma of the Immaculate Conception, ultimately defined in 1854, is nothing other than a rational expression of the angel’s greeting contained in Scripture: Mary is “already graced” with Christ’s redemption at the very moment of her creation.
Because God called Mary to the unique vocation of serving as the Mother of God, it is not just her soul that is graced, as is the case for us when we receive the sacraments. Mary’s entire being, body and soul, is full of grace so that she may be a worthy ark for the New Covenant. And just as the ark of the old covenant was adorned with gold to be a worthy house for God’s word, Mary is conceived without original sin to be the living and holy house for God’s Word.
Thus Mary is not only conceived immaculately, that is, without stain of sin. She also is the Immaculate Conception. Her entire being was specifically created by God with unique privilege so that she could fulfill her role in God’s plan of salvation. “Free from sin,” both original and personal, is the necessary consequence of being “full of grace.”
Protestants claim that veneration of Mary as it is practiced by Catholics is not biblical. St. Paul encouraged the Corinthians to “be imitators of me, as I am of Christ” (1 Cor 11:1). Paul is not holding himself up as the end goal, but as a means to Christ, the true end. And if a person is imitated, he is simultaneously venerated.
If we should imitate Paul, how much more should we imitate Mary, who fulfilled God’s will to the greatest degree a human being could. Throughout her life she humbled herself so that God could be exalted, and because of this, Christ has fulfilled his promise by exalting his lowly mother to the seat closest to him in God’s kingdom.
Mary is the model of humility, charity, and openness to the will of God. She allows a sword to pierce her heart for the sake of the world’s salvation. She shows us the greatness to which we are called: a life free from sin and filled with God’s grace that leads to union with God in Heaven. She is the model disciple, and therefore worthy of imitation and veneration, not as an end in herself, but as the means to the very purpose of her – and our – existence: Christ himself.
God’s lowly handmaiden would not want it any other way.
MANY of the people? Just how many people have you met who hold to that view, because for all my connections with non-Catholic Christianity, even I haven't run into that many who hold that view. Just where do you find all these people?
Then point them to this verse.....
Genesis 4:1 Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain, saying, I have gotten a man with the help of the Lord.
I'm going to bet that CB's response is *No* because he holds to Scripture as authoritative.
I would contend it was not in ignorance as much as it was trying not to be in opposition to the CCC and Rome. I would even suggest that the answer was checked against what the RCC has written on the matter.
MANY of the people? Just how many people have you met who hold to that view,””
Arnold Murray and Shepherds Chapel- He has had his own TV show for many years. This guy has a huge following
I guess post #4437 troubles you?
That is good, it should make you realize that our Lord is Merciful
Yes, I am saying that and I don't see the contradiction. More in a minute.
I also am not a machine but a human being answering ~20 posts a day. Granted, I treat your posts with greater attention because I detect in you an ability to argue intelligently. Nevertheless, I cannot be emitting well-rounded encyclopedia style articles each time someone, especially someone prone to flippant one-liner posts raises a subject. Besides, in this particular exchange there was a word "misleading" which made it as if by agreeing to the gist of the post I also accused the born-again of intentionally being deceptive. What I meant was that these statements of feeling born-again, elated, lead by the Holy Ghost are typically a lure; however, I did not intend to put into question sincerity of the people with these feelings. What is a lure? It is an emotional condition that comes not from the Holy Spirit but from our passions; that is, coming exactly from the part of self we are supposed to control and sanctify through our works of faith and love. It is felt very strongly and in fact cannot be overcome by will alone, but by prayer and fasting (cf Romans 7:5-6, Matthew 17:20, Romans 8:13).
So why is it that you see a contradiction where there is none? There is a assumption in Protestantism that salvation is not merely by faith alone but also is static, binary proposition: not saved, then saved, end of story. Another is that the condition of the mind is already saving faith. These two combined together mean that the sacrament of baptism has, supposedly no value outside of the emotional state of the new Christian. The direct scriptural reference to the salvific nature of baptism as sacrament, 1 Peter 3:21, is, as many other inconvenient scripture, ignored.
So what is the truth? Proper baptism done in a Protestant setting is a valid sacrament (a priest is not required for baptism and so any heretic Christian or even a non-Christian can baptize). At that point, perhaps despite a sincere belief in Luther, Calvin, and their legion, and heartfelt denial of things Catholic the newly baptized believer is ... gasp ... Catholic because he chose to undergo a Catholic sacrament driven by love of Christ and desire to unite with Him. Then what happens? Not fed by the Holy Eucharist (that, unlike baptism cannot happen but on a Catholic altar), not instructed in virtue, not believing in works in general have anything to do with salvation; often even believing that his future sins are all forgiven and his sanctification complete, -- the new baptized Catholic stops being Catholic, has nowhere to confess his sins, hardens in presumption of his own salvation and sanctity and becomes lost.
No question, a Catholic can grow tepid in his faith as well. But for him, there is the Church, the constant prayer of the saints, the presence of Christ will, we hope, keep him in the palm of the Lord. A protestant, on the other hand, especially one arguing around against Catholicism, is like a seed fallen on the asphalt of modernity, -- he does not have a culture that nourishes his soul.
But life goes on. A sincere reflection, a scripture read outside of the carefully chosen by his lying pastor stream of Protestant prooftexts, fear of death, pain,-- push the poor lost soul back to union with God and he discovers, or rediscovers, the Catholic Church. That could become a saving experience, even if done at the hour of death, when Mary our mother will pray for him. But not for all, not even for many. That is the tragedy of Protestantism.
Im not even going to address something like that. If you believe that Muslims and Catholics serve the same God Catholics have a bigger problem than I even have learned about.
>>So according to you, if a muslim women who loves unconditionally gives up her life to save her baby from a terrorist ends up in hell even though she has never heard of Christ<<
So you dont believe that a belief in Christ as savior is needed for salvation? Scripture is rather clear on that.
>>So much for the God of mercy<<
The whole statement is the God of Mercy and Justice. He wouldnt be the perfect God if it didnt include justice. Man is born in sin. Without the shed blood of Christ is destined for hell. Only the reliance on Christ as our only savior can we escape the justice. Anyone who does not believe on the Lord Jesus is lost.
Because salvation is a GIFT given by God to those who trust Him. It is not earned, that is why works cannot advance our salvation.
What saves us is FORGIVENESS and God not counting our sin against us, not us working to make up for them.
Doing good, overcoming evil with good, glorifies God because nothing good dwells in us. Any good in us comes from God and that is why our doing good glorifies Him. It is Him working in us to will and to do according to His good pleasure. (Philippians 2:13)
Salvation is not by works.
FWIW, muslims have heard of Jesus. They consider Him a prophet, although not the Son of God. Thery consider the OT and NT as holy books.
They know enough. They are without excuse.
Gospel in Islam
A bronze snake would be a graven image and pagan yet God Told Moses that people who look upon it would be healed of snake bites.
It likely BECAME pagan after people were healed after LOOKING on it.
It does not justify taking pagan religious symbols and trying to *Christianize* or *reform* them.
You know, I think that is a problem with Catholic thinking, that people and things can be *reformed*.
It's not true. God doesn't reform humans, He demands death for sin. We must die in order to become a new creature in Christ.
Galatians 2:19-20 19 For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
That's where works based salvation fails because it's based on the works the old corrupted person does and offers to God and the works done that way are as filthy rags to Him because they are also corrupted.
There is a strain of Protestantism that has it more or less correct, as the Joint Catholic-Lutheran Statement of Justification showed. With them I do not argue, but I do argue with the evil fruit of Luther who would not understand, let alone sign that statement.
lack of warrant from Scripture
LOL, James 2 flatly denies salvation by faith alone and explains why.
i see not even an acknowledgment of your error
Because there is no error. You did show me some language from the Church fathers, and I countered that it is Luther who developed "by faith alone" in direct contradiction with plain scripture, not that Catholic sloppy writer or translator. So the fraud is also his, Luther's.
Modern Evangelical Protestantism, even in its present state, outshines Roman Catholicism overall in evidences of faith
You remember your prooftexts. Catholics meet with living God. We don't have the same basis of comparing faith. Also, I do not defend fallible Catholics but the Holy Catholic Church.
declared herself infallible
Matthew 18:18, Acts 20:28.
And you’ve met many of the people from his church personally?
Then, are all saved?
26 And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place, 27 that they should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us, 28 for In him we live and move and have our being; as even some of your own poets have said, For we are indeed his offspring.
29 Being then God's offspring, we ought not to think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination of man. 30 The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent, 31 because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.
Then, are all saved?
It is true that all good comes from God, but some wish to glorify God, others don't. It looks like something is required of you. (Sorry for previous, pressed Post too soon).
This is like your silly statement that if Christ is shown on the Cross, we must not be aware of the fact of His resurrection.
I already did articulate - Perhaps you mean for me to elaborate... Such a thing cannot be handled in a missive, but rather, a tome. All I can do is invite you to read the koran and asoc. hadiths with an eye toward it's prophecy. You will most certainly change your mind.
And a prophet is only a prophet if he declares a god - so what he declares defines the god he serves. the god Mohammed serves says he is the one true god of Abraham but he is not the same entity as YHWH.
Matthew 18:18 Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.
But you forgot the next verses.
Matthew 18:19 Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.
That verse tells us two things. First, the church is wherever two or three are gathered in my name. Second, the ability to bind and loose is also give to any two or three who are gathered in the name of Jesus.
Then you posted this.
Acts 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.
You do understand that it was Paul talking to the elders of Ephesus only. They were only the elders of that local church not an overall governing body.
It’s from Scripture.
Your issue is with the Holy Spirit.
Yes, I am aware he is talking the company line... Almost word-for-word... It is my intent that he might go look for himself!
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