Honoring Mary Shattered by Luke 11.


Daniel:
Concerning Mary, Luke 11:27-28, tells us how Jesus felt about our exalting His mother. A woman in the company cried out, “Blessed is the womb that bare thee, and the paps which thou hast sucked”, and Jesus replied, “Yea RATHER, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it”. Jesus loved His mother, but made it clear that we are not to exalt her.

BFHU: There is another way of looking at this passage. The Protestant culture teaches the faithful to use a method of what I call “either/or”. For the passage you have brought up one must decide either to honor Mary or “to hear the word of God and keep it.” But in our Catholic way of interpreting scripture we also use a “both/and” method unless the context clearly indicates that an either/or decision must be made. Therefore, one does NOT have to choose either to honor Mary or “to hear the word of God and keep it.” We can do both. But this in no way is to be taken to mean both are equal in importance. The honoring of Mary will get you nowhere if you do not ” hear the word of God and keep it.” It would be a lot like “faith without works is dead”.

In addition, at the suggestion of Surkiko, I just looked up “rather” in the Greek. It is the Greek word menoun.

Here is how a Protestant scholar understands the passage:
The Greek word used for “rather” in Luke 11:28 is “menoun”:

“autos de eipen menoun makarioi hoi akouontes ton logon tou theou kai phulassontes”
“Blessed are those who hear the word of God” (Lk. 11:28a)

There are various translations of the word menoun. The King James Version translates it as “yea rather” while the Revised Standard Version renders it as “indeed.” The Douay-Rheims Version renders it as “furthermore.”

How then is “menoun” to be understood? Protestant Bible scholar Margaret E. Thrall studied Greek particles in the New Testament. This scholar cannot be accused of bias toward the Catholic position. Yet, in her study, she suggests the interpretation of “menoun” in Luke 11:27-28 as:

“What you have said is true as far as it goes. But the blessedness of Mary does not consist simply in the fact of her relationship towards myself, but (menoun) in the fact that she shares in the blessedness of those who hear the word of God and keep it, and it is in this that true blessedness lies” [Margaret E. Thrall, Greek Particles in the New Testament (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans, 1962) p. 35].
–From the blog The Knight of Mary

Is Repetitious Prayer Condemned in Scripture?


Perpetual Virginity of Mary


For an explanation of why “until” does not HAVE to mean Mary and Joseph had sex after Jesus’ birth please take a look at how the we explain it. It is very interesting. Also, included are early church writings proving that the belief in Mary’s perpetual virginity was not made up later.

Mary Was Only a Virgin UNTIL Jesus was Born.

And here is proof that the Reformers all believed in the Perpetual virginity of Mary:

–>Luther on the Perpetual Virginity of Mary

So, at what late date and by whom was it infallibly determined that Mary had other children?

Did Jesus Exist Before His Mother?


Jonah: If Mary was not the Queen of Heaven referred to in Jeremiah (because she was not in existence at the time), when did she begin to exist…at the time of Jesus??

Bread From Heaven: Mary began to exist about 15-16 years before the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem. She began to exist at the time of her Immaculate Conception as a result of the union of her parents and God saving her from the stain of original sin.

Jonah: Does that mean that God the Father and all the old testament people pre-existed the Queen of Heaven?

Bread From Heaven: Yes, God the Father and all the Old Testament people absolutely existed before Mary, Queen of Heaven.

Jonah: King Jesus was around for eternity, just incarnated around 2012 years ago…so he pre-existed his own Queen Mother? How would you spin this one?

Bread From Heaven: Yes, Jesus the second person of the Trinity, is eternal and therefore existed before the mother of His Flesh. There was no Queen of Heaven before Mary’s Assumption into Heaven.

The Holy Trinity is Eternal. Human beings are created creatures. Once created, our souls are eternal even though our bodies die as a result of The Fall of Adam and Eve. Jesus came to enable our salvation and Eternal life in Heaven. If we reject Him we will have Eternal Hell.

To read the post that sparked these questions click here–>Mary, Queen of Heaven

Mary: Queen of Heaven



Mary: Read Jeremiah chapter 7 and 44 and see what God says about praying to the Queen of Heaven.

Bread From Heaven: We do not pray TO Mary in the same sense that we pray TO God. God is able to answer our prayers. Mary and the Saints are able to intercede for us just like any other human person that we ask to pray for us TO GOD.

1) Mary is not an idol. She is a human alive in Heaven.

2) She actually is the Queen Mother of Heaven because Jesus is King.

3) The Queen of Heaven mentioned in Jeremiah could not possibly have been referring to Mary, since she had not even been born yet, and neither had her parents or their parents.

4) The Queen of Heaven referred to in Jeremiah was a mythical pagan goddess. Mary was not Pagan. She was not mythical. She is not a goddess.

5) “All generations shall call me blessed.” Mary declared under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Which Church still calls Mary the Blessed Mother? Does your Church? How will you answer when you stand before Jesus and He asks you why you did not?

6) Catholics honor Mary. We do not worship her. We honor her in obedience to the Commandments to honor our Father and Mother. Since we are a part of the body of Christ, Mary is also our mother. And we are told in Revelation 12

17 Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to wage war against the rest of her offspring —those who keep God’s commands and hold fast their testimony about Jesus.

Did Jesus Dishonor His Mother?


HDavis Something this important should have at least some scriptual example or support.

Bread From heaven:
Only if one believes in Sola Scriptura which we do not since it is not found anywhere is Scripture. I have no idea why Protestants who profess to believe nothing EXCEPT what can be found in scripture believe in Sola Scriptura when it CANNOT be found in Scripture. This is very strange.

HDavis We are instructed to pray to god no one else.


Bread From heaven:
Where????

HDavis On earth we pray for each other as we are in the flesh and need prayer.


Bread From heaven:
Where are prayers for one another alive, in the body of Christ limited ONLY to those who are living on Earth in Time? That is your bias. It is not in Scripture.

HDavis On earth Jesus all but ignored his mother’s request at the marriage feast at Cana.”What is that to me and you women? My time has not come.
His mother said to the servants, Whatever He may say to you,do it.”


Bread From heaven:
I am amazed by your assertion that Jesus ignored His mother’s request. He absolutely did as she requested. He, in obedience to the commandment, honored His mother. She trusted in His answer to her request. The phrase, “What is that to me and you, woman.” is a Hebrew idiom. The use of woman is generally a sign of respect in this ancient culture unlike in our own. But, because sons did not usually address their mothers in this way, even though respectful, we see it as a direct allusion to Eve and the promise in

Genesis 3:15 And I will put enmity
Between you and the woman,
And between your seed and her seed;
He shall bruise you on the head,
And you shall bruise him on the heel.”


What is that to me and you
had a flexible meaning depending upon context. It could mean a disagreement and rejection of another. But it could also mean,the free consent of one party to the request of another party, with our without a sense of reluctance. The way Protestants typically interpret this passage would entail Jesus the God/Man dishonoring his mother in direct disobedience to the commandment to honor your father and mother. Protestants never think of this. They do not mean to have Jesus sin in such a way. But that is what happens when you try to interpret scripture out of context of the culture and history of the Church.

HDavis Mary is standing “outside”with His ‘brothers and sisters’ at a gathering Jesus was teaching and Jesus said ‘Who is my mother?… Whoever does the will of God is my mother.’


Bread From heaven:
Surely Mary did the will of God. Again, Jesus did not in any way dishonor His mother here even though Protestants want to see Him being dismissive of her in order to bolster their claim that Catholics honor Mary too much. He did, however, want to emphasize that obedience makes one a part of His intimate family.

HDavis In His kingdom there are no special believers as she like all other believers with no power or authority except that which has been given by man!


Bread From heaven:
All the Grace that Mary possesses was given her, not by man but by God. And there certainly is a hierarchy of honor in the Body of Christ. We see Jesus, taking Peter, James, and John with him and leaving the other disciples. These were His inner circle. Mary was chosen above all women to bear and mother the God/Man Jesus. This was a high honor.

HDavisBut on the other hand,the apostles had power to heal,raise the dead,help and guide the church until the New Testament was completed.But,we are not told to pray to them in heaven!We are not told they intercede for us in any scripture.We are told the Holy Spirit does intercede for us.Romans 8: 26-7


Bread From heaven:

John 20:30 Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. 31 But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
John 21: 25 And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written.

The Rosary vs Divination


Sonja:  Praying to dead saints…this not necessarily clearly refuted by scripture but definitely not taught either. The only time I recall someone trying to contact the dead was when Saul tried to contact Samuel the prophet. He did it through a seer (clearly against the command of God) and Samuel seemed pretty irritated Saul had called him from his rest.

Bread From Heaven: Yes, this was clearly a sin. But it was a sin of divination. The seeking of occult knowledge from the dead. This is definitely condemned in scripture. But divination is not the same things as asking for prayer, to join you in praying. No occult knowledge is sought at all.   The attempt to equate the two in order to condemn the communion of the saints is very sloppy exegesis. But, hey, I used to believe it.

Sonja: Also wouldn’t mind seeing the Hail Mary prayer since I was under the impression that it was more of a prayer to her???

Bread From Heaven:

Hail Mary full of grace. The Lord is with thee. Blessed art  thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death.

Sonja: What do get out of the repetition with the rosemary beads?

While we say the Hail Mary ten times we meditate on an event in the Life of Christ. (there are only two about Mary) That is called a decade of the Rosary. There are five decades for five events to meditate on. Five decades is usually what people mean when they say, “I prayed the Rosary.”

Bread From Heaven:

Joyful Mysteries of Life of Christ

The Annunciation-Angel tells Mary she will have son of God

Annunciation

Visitation

Nativity

Dedication in Temple

Finding of Jesus in Temple

Sorrowful Mysteries

Agony in Garden

Beating

Crowning of Thorns

Carrying Cross

Crucifixion

Luminous Mysteries

Baptism of Jesus

Wedding at Cana

Preaching the Kingdom of Go

Transfiguration

Last Supper

Glorious Mysteries

Resurrection

Ascension

Pentecost

Mary Assumed into Heaven

Mary Queen of Heaven

Perpetual Virginity of Mary


Sonya:  I also think the perpetual virginity argument is weak at best because if the Bible said she remained a virgin till her death, I am pretty sure we wouldn’t be having a discussion about it.

Bread From Heaven: But, neither would we be having this discussion if Jesus or any of the writers of the NT said that all Christian truth must be found ONLY in the Scriptures. And I know that if Scripture did say Mary was ever virgin and immaculate Protestants would believe it. But why do you believe in Sola Scriptura, since it is not taught or mentioned in scripture?

So you think that Mary’s perpetual virginity is weak b/c it is not found in scripture. OK, that is your choice.

Did you know that Luther, Calvin, and Zwingli firmly believed in her perpetual virginity? So, by whose authority was it rejected among Protestants?

Martin Luther: “It is an article of faith that Mary is the Mother of the Lord and still a virgin…Christ, we believe, came forth from a womb left perfectly intact.” (Works of Luther, V. 11, pp319-320; V. 6, p 510)

John Calvin: “there have been certain folk who have wished to suggest from this passage (Mt 1:25) that the Virgin Mary had other children than the Son of God, and that Joseph had then dwelt with her later; but what folly this is! For the gospel writer did not wish to record what happened afterwards; he simply wished to make clear Joseph’s obedience and to show also that Joseph had been well and truly assured that it was God who had sent His angel to Mary. He had therefore never dwelt with her nor had he shared her company…And besides this our Lord Jesus Christ is called the firstborn. This is not because there was a second or third, but because the gospel writer is paying regard to the precedence. Scripture speaks thus of naming the first-born whether or no there was any question of the second.” (Sermon on Matthew 1:22-25, published 1562)

Ulrich Zwingli: “I firmly believe that Mary, according to the words of the gospel as a pure Virgin brought forth for us the son of God and in childbirth and after childbirth forever remained a pure, intact Virgin.”.” (Zwingli Opera, Corpus Reformatorum, Berlin, 1905, in Evang. Luc., Op. comp., V6,1 P. 639

But, what surprises me, unless you haven’t read it, is that the refutation of the Protestant contention, that Jesus MUST have had brothers and sisters would be irrelevant to you. –>Who Were the Brothers & Sisters of Jesus?

Protestants reject the Perpetual Virginity of Mary b/c they know the scriptures speak several times about the brothers and sisters of Jesus. So, if it is scripturally possible that these passages refer to Jesus’ kinsmen or step siblings as opposed to Mary’s offspring, then there is no absolute scriptural refutation of Mary’s Perpetual Virginity. This was amazing and convincing to me twelve years ago when I first looked into Catholicism.

Tradition of Men: Catholics worship Idols.


Bread From Heaven: On my post Where Does Scripture Say Mary Was Sinless? I made the oft repeated comment: “The Catholic Faith does not contradict anything in Scripture.” To this Erica replied:

Erica: How about IDOLATRY…?

Look at your Churches… There’s a lot of statues of Saints, Mary etc. that almost all of Catholics kneel upon it and even worship it like a God….

Go and continue worshiping your godly images and let’s see how far you will go…

“But cowards, unbelievers, the corrupt, murderers, the immoral, those who practice witchcraft, IDOL WORSHIPERS, and all liars–their fate is in the FIERY LAKE OF BURNING SULFUR. This is the SECOND DEATH.”
Revelation 21:8

HAHAHAHA!!!

Bread From Heaven: I have many posts on this topic. Since I had just made a power point presentation to all of our confirmation students last Sunday I decided to make  my talk into one more post on this topic:

Does the Catholic Church worship Idols?

Protestants say we do. Where do they get  this idea?

TEN COMMANDMENTS
First Commandment

Exodus 20:You must not have any other god but me.You must not make for yourself an idol of any kind or an image of anything in the heavens or on the earth or in the sea. You must not bow down to them or worship them

Therefore, many Protestants criticize Catholics because we have pictures and statues in our Churches and our homes. Most Protestants never have these in their churches because they think they are idols. They take this very seriously.

“You must not make for yourself an idol of any kind…

Protestant are very sincere, BUT…are Protestants  right?
No, they are forgetting some very important Bible verses where God told Moses to place in the Temple in the very presence of God, the Holy of Holies:

2 ANGELS  of hammered gold …their wings spread upward..The angels are to face each other..-Ex. 25:18-20

 So, God Himself wanted a couple of images of “things in Heaven” in the Tabernacle

And did you know God told Solomon to decorate the Temple with images of things in Heaven and Earth? 

600 Pomegranates, Lilies, Gourds, 12 Bulls, Lions, Angels, Palm Trees, and Golden Flowers

And it stood upon twelve oxen, of which three looked towards the north, and three towards the west, and three towards the south, and three towards the east, and the sea was above upon them, and their hinder parts were all hid within.–I Kings 7:18-46

And then we have the incident where the children of Israel were bitten by fiery serpents and …

Numbers 21:8 The LORD said to Moses, “Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live.”

Obviously, God  has not forbidden art because He commanded specific kinds of art to decorate the Temple and to save the Israelites from snakebites. He just didn’t want us to Worship these things

 “You must not bow down to them or worship them”

Why does the Catholic Church have Art in Churches? I can think of 5 reasons.

1. Pictures and statues are like family photos in our houses of worship only we have images of the Family of God.

Doesn’t every house have family pictures?

2. As an aid to prayer and to keep us focused.

3. To remind us of those who set an example of heroic Christian living.

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4. As reminders of Stories of Faith; to teach our children when a child asks, “Who is that?”

5. To tell the stories of our Faith to all the generations in the last 2000 years when Bibles were too expensive for individuals to own and most people could not read anyway. Did you know, even today 20% of the world population cannot read? But everyone can understand art.

But Protestants will say, “The Bible says: You must not bow down to them or worship them….”

Therefore, Protestants reason, since Catholics have images in their churches and they kneel or bow to them, Catholics worship images and commit idolatry!

So, Protestants think this kneeling is  Idolatry?

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But not this–><—or this

or this–>

Is President Obama worshiping the  Emperor of Japan?

No! He was merely honoring him.

Why do Protestants think only Catholic kneeling is Idolatry?

Simple. Because their leaders have taught them that Catholics worship idols. Protestants trust their leaders and so when they visit a Catholic Church and see statues and pictures with people kneeling in front of them they jump to the conclusion that they are actually seeing modern day idolatry.

They do not question this judgement because they have been taught that this is true. They fail to recognize that they are unable to know the heart and mind of the kneeling person and therefore their judgement may, very well be, uncharitable. They don’t mean to be uncharitable…..But…..

They are simply WRONG!

We bow and kneel in order to honor Mary and the Saints. We do NOT worship them. The Catholic Church condemns the worship of anyone except God, the Holy Trinity!

There is nothing wrong with art in our Churches

Because God Himself commanded Moses to decorate the Jewish Temple with images of:

Things in Heaven–>Angels

and

Things on Earth–>Plants and Animals

The idea that all kneeling is, without question, Worship, is absurd.

If all kneeling =Worship then:

A Knight kneeling to a king is worshiping him.

A little girl kneeling by her bed is worshiping the bed…

A boy kneeling by a Bible and baseball glove is worshiping them.

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When God said: You must not make …an image of any kind or …bow down …or worship them…

He did not mean all images are idols and all kneeling is worship.

He simply meant : Don’t worship anything or anyone but ME.

Mary was Only a Virgin…until…


Steve: “and I ask blessed Mary, ever virgin,”
let me point out that Mary was only a virgin when she conceived and until she delivered Jesus. otherwise you are stating all of her children were by virgin birth.

BFHU: Not at all. No one but Jesus is born of a virgin and the Holy Spirit. The “brothers and sisters of Jesus” were not siblings but kinsmen or possibly step siblings born of Joseph and a wife who had died. Please see–>Mary Was Only a Virgin UNTIL Jesus was born

Who Were the Brothers & Sisters of Jesus?

Steve:…let me also point out (Rom 3:23) For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
and to your intended response that “all does not include Mary”
(1Jn 1:10) If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

BFHU: So then do we “make Him a liar” if we contend for the sinlessness of Jesus, too? I am not saying I have not sinned. I am saying that Mary was preserved, by the grace and power of God, from sin, in order to be a perfect vessel for the Son of God Almighty. Does that not just seem more fitting?

Steve: Furthermore, if Mary was sinless or perfect which is what you are claiming by making her sinless, she would have also been conceived by the Spirit of God moving on her mother.

BFHU: Why? That does not seem logical. Do you believe  that God lacks the power remove the stain of original sin from the one intended to nurture and give birth to the Holy Son of God? Mary was conceived in the normal way by her parents, who were not sinless. But, God acted to create her immaculate just like He created Adam and Eve. It is not like it was the first and only time God did it.

Steve:At which point she would have been divine and Jesus’ blood would not be the ONLY redeeming blood available to us. But, “by HIS blood…”

BFHU: That is just silly. Mary is fully human just like Adam and Eve, but before they fell.
Steve: Finally, if Mary had been sinless/perfect she would have had no need to be filled with the Holy Ghost (ref. Acts 1 & 2), however she was in the upper room and the Bible states (Act 2:4) And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

BFHU: Where does Scripture say she would not  need to be filled with the Holy Ghost if she were sinless? Mary was a child of the OT covenant.
Steve: She would also have had no need for baptism, which is for the remission of sins according to Peter. If you claim Mary was not baptized, which again is for the remission of SINS, then according to Scripture, which is infallible, she was not even saved.

BFHU: Why would Mary, being sinless, need to be baptized for the remission of….no sin? She is saved. She even calls God her savior. She was saved from the moment of her conception rather than from the moment of baptism.
Steve: (Act 2:38) Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.(Act 2:39) For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.

God calls men to do what? God calls men to repentance.
(Act 17:30) And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: this does NOT say with the exception of Mary, it states ALL men.

BFHU:  There was no need to say “with the exception of Mary,” because people who were sinners were being called to repentance. The Bible is not a book of systematic theology. You treat it as if it were when you claim that it should have included “with the exception of Mary,” if this was a fact. And I would agree, IF the Bible were a book of systematic theology. But it isn’t.

Steve: Yes, to answer your question, I believe if it is not a Biblical truth, then it is mans theology, and prone to flaws. The Apostles did not teach this nor believe this.

BFHU: I know this is true of you and most Protestants but the Bible does not teach Sola Scriptura/Scripture alone. Your assertion of Sola Scriptura is merely a tradition of men.

Steve: Mary did not ascend to heaven, otherwise the “first resurrection” would have already happened that is stated in (Rev 20:5) But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.
The rest of the dead will arise during the second resurrection. If you read the Scripture leading up to 20:5 you will see that those are the dead which will not worship or serve the beast. Then comes the second resurrection in Rev 20:12-15 which ends with the condemnation of those that were not written in the book of life.

BFHU: Are you aware that lots of people, besides Jesus rose from the dead? So, your attempt to interpret the above verses to disprove the Assumption of Mary just does not hold water.

Enoch seems like a possible forerunner of assumption.

Genesis 5:24
Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God took him away.

Elijah, too, was taken up to Heaven without dying.

2 Kings 2:11
As they were walking along and talking together, suddenly a chariot of fire and horses of fire appeared and separated the two of them, and Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind.

 Mt 27:50 And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit. 51 At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook, the rocks split 52 and the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. 53 They came out of the tombs after Jesus’ resurrection and[e] went into the holy city and appeared to many people.

Steve: The Apostles only baptized in the name of Jesus, in every Scripture you see where it is mentioned, it is only in His name.

BFHU: The Catholic Church simply obeys Jesus when He said,

Mt 28:8 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.

Yes, there are several scripture where baptism is mentioned “in the name of Jesus.” Perhaps the apostles did baptize this way or it may have been a shortened version of the formula “in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  Regardless of the history we obey Jesus’ command from Mt. 28 and so do most Protestants. Anyone baptized in the name of the Blessed Trinity is truly baptized regardless of which church or who did the baptizing.

Steve: By saying the proper formula is in the “titles” Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, then you are claiming the Apostles, whom Jesus himself spent 40 days after his resurrection opening their understanding, were wrong. That is quite a bold statement considering they were the ones who actually penned the NT Word of God as His Spirit moved on them.

BFHU: You are jumping to conclusions.  The Father, Son and Holy Spirit is not plural–titles. It is a singular NAME of the Godhead. It bespeaks of the trinitarian God: One Name, three persons.