Sunday, April 6, 2008

Ave Maria

or better known as "Mary, Full of Grace". The a-C stated to me...."Where is there any reference in the Bible to Mary being full of grace" ...its just not there". I had to dig deep in reply...I know its there...I hear it at Mass every week...Hup! there it is:

One of many Bible sources of Mary's condition:
- read Luke 1, vs. 26 through 38, specifically verse 28 as follows:" And in the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God into a city of Galilee, called Nazareth, 27 To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David: and the virgin's name was Mary. 28 And the angel being come in, said unto her: Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. 29 Who having heard, was troubled at his saying and thought with herself what manner of salutation this should be. 30 And the angel said to her: Fear not, Mary, for thou hast found grace with God. 31 Behold thou shalt conceive in thy womb and shalt bring forth a son: and thou shalt call his name Jesus. 32 He shall be great and shall be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of David his father: and he shall reign in the house of Jacob for ever. 33 And of his kingdom there shall be no end.34 And Mary said to the angel: How shall this be done, because I know not man?35 And the angel answering, said to her: The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee and the power of the Most High shall overshadow thee. And therefore also the Holy which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God. 36 And behold thy cousin Elizabeth, she also hath conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her that is called barren. 37 Because no word shall be impossible with God. 38 And Mary said: Behold the handmaid of the Lord: be it done to me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her."

Interesting that you didnt know this a-C. The Devotion to Mary of the Universal Church is widely documented, and as to her intercessionary role and its biblical sources. Her position is further clarified in Revelation 12-1 through 6:" 1 And a great sign appeared in heaven: A woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars, 2 And being with child, she cried travailing in birth: and was in pain to be delivered........"Now a-C, objectively speaking, who do we know from the bible that fits this description? Is it not reasonable to tie this to John 19 where Christ on the Cross told his disciple "Behold they mother.." pointing at Mary? The Crown of 12 stars in Rev 12-2, what do they represent to you a-C? Not a statement, but a question of research.

The a-C then replies...
"This is revelation that indeed the Lord would come thru her…but to say that she is an intercessor is simply not there, there is no worship or otherwise…the Lord said I will share my Glory with no other…let alone a woman that he created

(Whoa....This is a huge statement...imagine the Chicken/Egg debate going on there...we will have to address this philosophical broadbrush at some point)

She declared that he was her Lord! (well...duh)

The NASB has the proper translation of the word which is used often, she declared herself to be his slave!

38 And Mary said, "Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; may it be done to me according to your word." And the angel departed from her.

You would agree that the angel did not pray to her, nor worship her, nor did anyone any where in scripture…nor did Elizabeth become the object of worship or adiration…

When Jesus was on the Cross, he directed John that Mary was now to be taken care of by him…it was a directive to him as she was a widow and her children had not come to faith yet…

This really does not support anything to the notion that she is an intercessor and if she were, would she be mentioned in texts like Heb 4:14 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. 15 For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. 16 Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

There is nothing in scripture about her intercession…"

My reply to this assertion...

a-C, you say and I quote"There is nothing in scripture about her intercession…"

I found reference in Romans: The doctrine of one Mediator, Christ, in no way excludes the invocation and intercession of saints. All merit indeed comes through Him; but this does not make it unlawful to ask our fellow-creatures, whether here on earth or already in heaven, to help us by their prayers. The same Apostle who insists so strongly on the sole mediatorship of Christ, earnestly begs the prayers of his brethren: "I beseech you, therefore, brethren, through our Lord Jesus Christ, and by the charity of the Holy Ghost, that you help me in your prayers for me to God" (Romans 15:30); and he himself prays for them: "I give thanks to my God in every remembrance of you, always in all my prayers making supplication for you all" (Phil., i, 3, 4). If the prayers of the brethren on earth do not derogate from the glory and dignity of the Mediator, Christ, neither do the prayers of the saints in heaven.

Romans is clear. "Supplication" or petitioning is clear. Just as if I asked you to pray for me Jim, that is valid intercession. So I would be diminishing what God did for us by asking you to intercede for me in prayer? The Bible states otherise.

This particluar conversation went offtrack with the a-C pointing at Romans passages that are interpreted by him to make broad attacks on our Catholic "rituals" which of course is avoiding getting to the bottom of the Mary position.

I asked the a-C to go get me a rebuttal...biblically based, not interpretive...that proves praying to Mary or Saints is ineffective as praying to "dead people". In 3 days no reply so far......