This was an email conversation of a one “evangelical or born-again” individual challenging the Catholic teaching on Mary the Blessed Virgin the mother of Jesus Christ and a response from a catholic apologist.

Mary Was Never Blessed ABOVE Other Women, But AMONG

This is blasphemy! Nowhere in the scriptures does God elevate Mary, not even a little bit. We read in Luke 1:42, “And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou AMONG women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.” Notice carefully. The Word of God does NOT say that Mary was blessed “above” women; No, the Bible says Mary was blessed AMONG women.

cardinals at St. PaulFurthermore, there are MANY scriptures throughout the New Testament which speaks of others who were also called ““blessed,” with the same Greek word, as was Mary. One example is in Revelation 14:13, “And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, BLESSED are the dead which die in the Lord 230;” So according to the Bible, EVERY born–again believer is also blessed of God.

The Bible Never Leads Us to Recognize Mary

Indeed, Mary was greatly blessed to be chosen by God to be the vehicle through which the Godhead would become incarnate Colossians 2:9, but every born–again believer is ALSO BLESSED. The Almighty God NEVER said anything in the Bible about Mary being ABOVE anyone. Yeshua NEVER called Mary His mother. God NEVER leads us in any way to recognize Mary. Though Mary realized that people throughout the ages would call her “blessed” Luke 1:18, she never thought anyone would be so foolish and idolatrous as to bow down and worship her.

To recognize Mary is a sin because it is CHANGING the Word of God into a lie, &# 8220;Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator…” It is wrong to sing, pray, praise, or worship while including any mention of Mary. Why? Because the Word of God doesn’t do it. If God NEVER recognized Mary, nor told us to recognize Mary, then why in the name of common sense would people adore and uplift Mary as being something special?She is not! It’s time that people got back into the Bible and stopped listening to their lying Catholic and such like ministers.

Mary Needed a Savior; Even Mary herself referred to Yeshua/Jesus as her “Saviour”

“And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, And my spirit hath rejoiced in GOD MY SAVIOUR.” —Luke 1:46–47. If Mary was immaculately conceived without sin (as Catholics teach), then why would she need a Saviour? The Truth is that Mar y was a sinner just like any other “good” person (Romans 3:10). I’m sure Mary was sweet, godly, virtuous, and obedient, just as a few Christian women are today; but she was still a sinner deserving of Hell, and she needed a Savior as we see proof of in Luke 1:18.

There are good sinners and bad sinners, but we are all sinners. There are some very honest and good people in this world (in man’s eyes), but when compared to the inspired Words of God, they fall short and are nothing less than wicked sinners. The Bible proclaims that There is none righteous (Romans 3:10). Mary was a sinner and needed a Saviour, just like anybody else.

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Anti–Mary Comments:

Mary Was Never Blessed ABOVE Other Women, But AMONG

This is blasphemy! Nowhere in the scriptures does God elevate Mary, not even a little bit. We read in Luke 1:42, “And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou AMONG women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.” Notice carefully. The Word of God does NOT say that Mary was blessed “above” women; No, the Bible says Mary was blessed AMONG women.

My Comments:

Socrates once said that the unexamined life isn’t worth living. Well, in this case, I would say that the unexamined thought isn’t worth speaking. To claim that God nowhere in scripture elevates Mary, “not even a little bit,” is the blasphemy here. Being given the privilege of bearing God Himself in your womb is not being elevated by God? “Not even a little bit?” That is, essentially, saying that Jesus is no different than any other baby. If bearing “the Son of God” (Lk 1:35) in your womb isn’t special, then that means the Son of God isn’t special – He’s no different than any other baby. Blasphemy! Let’s start gathering some stones…

To say that Mary, who bore the Son of God in her womb, is not special, is like saying the Ark of the Covenant was just a nother box. Oh sure, it carried the Ten Commandments, and Aaron’s staff, and the Bread of the Presence, but so what? No big deal! Just another box. Nowhere does scripture say the Ark of the Covenant was blessed “ABOVE” other boxes. Mary carried the Word of God in flesh, not in stone. Mary carried the eternal High Priest (Heb 4:14) Himself, not just the high priest’s staff. Mary carried the living Bread that has come down from Heaven (John 6:41), the bread which if you eat of it you will live forever (John 6:51), not just the bread that the Hebrews scooped up off the ground and ate and yet still died (John 6:49). So, if Mary isn’t more blessed than any other woman, then the Ark of the Covenant is just another box.

Oh, and then there’s the whole being impregnated by the Holy Spirit thing. That’s happened to lots of women, right? I mean, nothing special about that, i s there? Nope…happens all the time. Think about this: Mary is the child of God the Father, she is the mother of God the Son, and she is the spouse of God the Holy Spirit – after all, the Holy Spirit impregnated her, so there has to be a marital relationship there, or that would mean Jesus was born out of wedlock. (They had a name for such children, and I don’t think anyone would want to apply that name to Jesus.) Can anyone else in the history of the world – past, present, or future – ever claim to have the same relationship with all three persons of the Trinity? Nah, God didn’t elevate Mary, “not even a little bit.”

Now, this whole thing about Mary being blessed “AMONG” women but not “above” women. Well, as my friend Bugs would say, “What a maroon.” Really?! I mean, “REALLY!?” Mary goes to visit her cousin El izabeth, and what happens that points to the absolute ordinariness of Mary? Well, first, Elizabeth’s baby, John the Baptist, leaps in his mother’s womb when what happens? When Elizabeth hears Mary’s voice. Has any similar occurrence ever been recorded in the Bible? Nope. So, that means the Word of God is telling us that Mary is quite ordinary, right?

Then, what happens next to point to Mary’s ordinariness? Elizabeth, filled with the Holy Spirit, exclaims with a loud cry, “Hey, you’re no more special than anyone else,” (Luke 1:42). At least, that is this person’s interpretation of what Elizabeth had to say. “Blessed are you among women,” actually means, “You’re nothing special among women.” Why would Elizabeth need to be filled with the Holy Spirit to tell Mary that she’s no different than anyone else? And why would Elizabeth hav e to exclaim this with a “loud cry?” Was that so the neighbors could all hear so that Mary wouldn’t get a big head or something?

According to this person, what’s going on in Luke, chapter 1, is that God sends an angel to Mary to tell her that she’s no different from anyone else, but, oh, by the way, Mary, you’re going to bear the Son of God in your womb. Then the Holy Spirit inspires Elizabeth to tell Mary she’s no different than anyone else. Yeah, it all makes sense to me now.

Two more things from Luke 1: 1) Why, if Mary is no one all that special, does Elizabeth say, “And why is this granted me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?” (Lk 1:43). Elizabeth is saying that Mary, the mother of Elizabeth’s Lord, coming to visit her is apparently quite the honor. But why, if Mary is nothing special? 2) Mary says that “all generations will call me b lessed.” Is there any other person that the Bible speaks of who will be called “blessed” for “all generations”? Nope. Yep, God nowhere elevates Mary, “not even a little bit.”

Anti–Mary Comments:

Furthermore, there are MANY scriptures throughout the New Testament which speaks of others who were also called ““blessed,” with the same Greek word, as was Mary. One example is in Revelation 14:13, “And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, BLESSED are the dead which die in the Lord…” So according to the Bible, EVERY born–again believer is also blessed of God.

My Comments:

Indeed, everyone who is born again is blessed. No dispute there. But, context is everything, and the context of Luke 1 i s being completely ignored by this person. What is the context of Mary being called “blessed among women,” in Luke 1, by a Holy Spirit – inspired Elizabeth? Well, an angel has appeared to her and told her she is “full of grace,” or, as it says in the KJV, “highly favored.” Favor basically means, “grace,” by the way. She is told she has found favor with God. She is overshadowed by the Holy Spirit and impregnated with the Son of God, the child who will reign forever. The mere sound of her voice causes John the Baptist to leap in his mother’s womb. Elizabeth considers it a great honor that Mary has come to visit her. And, Mary says that all generations will call her “blessed.” Of no other human being can all these things be said. To read Luke 1 and claim that Mary is no different than any other “saved” person, is quite ridiculous.

To assume, as this person did, that anyone called “blessed” in scripture is equal to everyone else called “blessed” in scripture, is a pretty big mistake. To use that same logic, then everyone called “lord” in scripture is equal to everyone else called “lord” in scripture. For example, In Acts 25:26, the Roman emperor is called “lord.” Does that mean he is equal to Jesus, Who is also called “Lord?” In 1 Cor 8:5, it is said that there are many “lords.” So, are all of these “lords” equal to Jesus, who is “Lord?” In 1 Peter 3:6, scripture tells us that Sarah called Abraham, “lord.” Does that then mean that Abraham is equal to Jesus, because he is called “lord” just like Jesus is called “Lord?” Of course not. So, does calling someone other than Mary &# 8220;blessed” mean that they are on the same footing as Mary? No, it doesn’t, unless of course you want to say that lord Abraham is on the same footing as Lord Jesus.

Anti–Mary Comments:

The Bible Never Leads Us to Recognize Mary

Indeed, Mary was greatly blessed to be chosen by God to be the vehicle through which the Godhead would become incarnate Colossians 2:9, but every born–again believer is ALSO BLESSED. The Almighty God NEVER said anything in the Bible about Mary being ABOVE anyone. Yeshua NEVER called Mary His mother. God NEVER leads us in any way to recognize Mary. Though Mary realized that people throughout the ages would call her “blessed” Luke 1:18, she never thought anyone would be so foolish and idolatrous as to bo w down and worship her.

My Comments:

Okay, now this person is contradicting herself. First she says that God did not elevate Mary, “not even a little bit,” and now she is saying that Mary was “greatly blessed.” And, I would ask, was any other woman ever equally blessed? If not, then Mary was indeed elevated, at least in some way, above all other women.

“God NEVER leads us in any way to recognize Mary?!” Really?! In the very next sentence she says, “Though Mary realized that people throughout the ages would call her blessed.” How did Mary realize that? It had to be by a special inspiration from God. And, why have people throughout the ages called Mary “blessed”? Because the Bible, the Holy Spirit–inspired Word of God, tells them about Mary being “blessed among women.” That’s not recognition? “REALLY?!” How can you read Luke 1 and say such a thing? Also, to say that “Yeshua,” Jesus, “NEVER called Mary His mother,” is an outright absurdity, number 1, and displays a gross ignorance of scripture, number 2. Just because Jesus is never quoted in scripture calling Mary his mother, does not allow someone to claim that he, therefore, never called her His mother. That same logic would lead to the claim that Jesus never used the bathroom. After all, nowhere does the Bible ever say Jesus used the bathroom, so by this person’s logic, we can say that Jesus never used the bathroom.

Also, the scripture is the Word of God, right? Yes it is. And, Jesus (Yeshua) is the Word of God (John 1:1). So, if scripture, the Word of God, anywhere calls Mary Jesus’ mother, then that means Jesus, the Word of God, calls Mary his mother. So, does S cripture ever call Mary Jesus’ mother? Indeed it does. Matt 1:18, “Now the birth of Jesus Christ…When His mother Mary…” Luke 2:51, “And His mother kept all these things in her heart.” John 19:25, “But standing by the cross of Jesus were His mother…” Acts 1:14, ”…together with the women and Mary, the mother of Jesus.” I could go on, but those examples will suffice. So, Jesus did indeed call Mary, His “mother” since the Word of God records all of these things.

Finally, the willful ignorance that leads someone to refer to the Catholic practice of loving, honoring, and respecting the Mother of our Lord, the Mother of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, as “worshipping” her, is absolutely breathtaking. Catholics do not “worship” Mary. If anyone worships Mary, they are not Catholic. I challenge anyone to fin d, in the Catechism of the Catholic Church – which is the official teaching of the Catholic Church – anything that states Catholics are to worship Mary or to consider her divine in any way. We worship God and God alone. And what is the telltale sign that we worship God? We offer sacrifice to Him. Do we ever offer sacrifice to Mary? Absolutely not. Therefore, that is the telltale sign that we do not consider her to be divine and do not worship her. Jesus loved, honored, and respected His mother. To have done otherwise would be to break the Commandment to honor thy father and thy mother. We are called to imitate Jesus. So, if one aspect of Jesus’ life was that He loved, honored, and respected His mother, then we, in imitation of Him, are called to do likewise.

Anti–Mary Comments:

To recognize Mary is a sin because it is CHANGING the Word of God into a lie, “Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator…” It is wrong to sing, pray, praise, or worship while including any mention of Mary. Why? Because the Word of God doesn’t do it. If God NEVER recognized Mary, nor told us to recognize Mary, then why in the name of common sense would people adore and uplift Mary as being something special?She is not! It’s time that people got back into the Bible and stopped listening to their lying Catholic and such like ministers.

My Comments: 

To recognize Mary is sin? So, when Jesus loved, respected, and honored His mother, that was a sin? And who is it here that is changing the Word of God into a lie? I have already demonstrated that several things this person has said about scripture are blatantly wrong. Regarding worshipping Mary, I have already addressed that above. It is a comment born out of ignorance, or possibly out of malice. Regarding the Word of God “NEVER” recognizing Mary, I don’t understand how such a claim can be made. In addition to what I’ve already said on this above, did God not recognize Mary as a vessel worthy of bearing His Son? Is that not recognition? Did God not send an angel to address Mary and tell her that she had found favor with God? Is that not recognition? Did Elizabeth not exclaim, while filled with the Holy Spirit, that Mary was blessed among women? Is that not recognition? If God “NEVER” recognized Mary, then pray tell, how did she get pregnant? “Lying Catholic and such like ministers?” That is a comment born of malice. Shame on this person. Shame.

Anti–Mary Comments:

Mary Needed a Savior; Even Mary herself referred to Yeshua/Jesus as her “Saviour”

“And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, And my spirit hath rejoiced in GOD MY SAVIOUR.” —Luke 1:46–47. If Mary was immaculately conceived without sin (as Catholics teach), then why would she need a Saviour? The Truth is that Mary was a sinner just like any other “good” person (Romans 3:10). I’m sure Mary was sweet, godly, virtuous, and obedient, just as a few Christian women are today; but she was still a sinner deserving of Hell, and she needed a Savior as we see proof of in Luke 1:18.

My Comments:

Mary did indeed need a savior. Every human being does. Catholics have never said otherwise. However, is it possible for God to save someone before they sin, in addition to saving them after they sin? Yes or no? Indeed it is. I am not an alcoholic. Nor am I a drug addict. Why not? By the grace of God. So, God saved me from being an alcoholic or a drug addict before I ever became one. Just so He saved Mary from sin before she ever became a sinner. He allowed Mary to be immaculately conceived without sin.

The quote from Rom 3:10 is not a very good one to prove the point trying to be made here. Romans 3:10 says, “None is righteous, no not one.” Does that mean, then, that there is not a single righteous human being? That is indeed the interpretation of this person. Yet, what does it say in Luke 1 about Zechariah and Elizabeth? Luke 1:6, “And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless.” How can they be righteous if no one is righteous? James 5:16, “The prayer of a righteous man has great power…” How can the prayer of a righteous man have great power if there are no righteous men? Seems she has a bit of a problem here. How can no one be righteous, yet scripture clearly tells us there are righteous people? I think she has a problem with her interpretation and understanding of scripture, as I have already demonstrated several times. Not someone whose words I would put a great deal of stock in.

Anti–Mary Comments:

There are good sinners and bad sinners, but we are all sinners. There are some very honest and good people in this world (in man’s eyes), but when compared to the inspired Words of God, they fall short and are nothing less than wicked sinners. The Bible proclaims that There is none righteous (Romans 3:10). Mary was a sinner and needed a Saviour, just like anybody else.

My Comments:

Ther e are “good sinners” and “bad sinners”? Does that mean that some people are better at sinning than others or what? “Good sinners?” One more time…really?! Again, the “none righteous” quote. I have already demonstrated that she has a problem in the fact that the Bible, both Old Testament and New, calls a number of people “righteous.” So, obviously, here absolutist interpretation of Romans 3:10 doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. Furthermore, to show that she is a bit off in her interpretation, I would ask her if she is seeking God? I would assume, since she is undoubtedly one of the few “sweet, godly, virtuous, and obedient” Christian women who are alive today, that she would say, “Yes,” she is seeking God. But, then I would ask, how can that be? After all, Romans 3, verse 11 says, quite clearly, that “no one see ks for God.” So, if the Bible tells us that no one seeks for God, then according to her method of intepreting these verses, she cannot be seeking God. Which causes me to ask the question: When it comes to matters of scripture, why would I want to listen to anyone who has to claim that they are not seeking God, in order to be consistent in their interpretation of scripture?

 

John Martignoni - www.biblechristiansociety.com