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Mary Was Sinless -- Part VII

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Initial post: Nov 1, 2012 2:50:10 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Nov 29, 2012 2:42:58 PM PST
Kevin Bold says:
The arguments against Mary's sinlessness:

1) Romans 3:23 -- doesn't apply to Mary

2) Infinite Regress of Sinless Grannies -- patently silly.

3) "It's not in the Bible" -- doesn't have to be, although God's holiness, sinners' inability to withstand God's glory, and OT Marian typology, all of which are in Scripture, point to it.

4) "Only Catholics believe it." -- That's an argument?

5) "Catholics didn't believe it until 1854." -- History proves otherwise.

6) Luke 1:47 -- God saved Mary from sin by keeping sin from entering her when she was conceived. Mary then continued, eventually saying, "(F)or he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name" (Luke 1:49).

7) Luke 2:22-24: Mary and Joseph offered two turtledoves because a woman who'd had a baby was RITUALLY UNCLEAN. Having a baby is NOT a sin (aborting one is).

Did I leave anything out?

Posted on Nov 1, 2012 3:01:25 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Nov 1, 2012 3:09:18 PM PDT
Continuing from Part VI...

StevePL,

Eventually all the offending priests will be found out and driven
from their positions with access to the laity.

Only one Bishop has been found guilty, and not of direct contact
but of failing to report the criminal activity of others, in all these
intervening years, to date.

This criminal sentence will have a profound impact on the behavior
of Bishops to come, imo.

Still, none of this scourge refutes Apostolic Succession, as there
are many more priests who will themselves become Bishops, and
who will make more men priests, men who would never harm
a child, or an adult, as the percentages are very low, tragic each
one, but very low.

The process is valuable in view of the article I suggested, as the
other churches are interested in obtaining access to Apostolic
Succession from Bishops, who they themselves have "broken away"
from the mainstream Catholic Church.

See the article:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apostolic_succession

If Apostolic Succession is not valuable, why are these men desperately
seeking ordination and even reordination through these other factions,
from these other Bishops who are outside the Catholic Church?

Posted on Nov 1, 2012 3:07:51 PM PDT
Continuing from Part VI...

Patricia,

Priests have been found guilty and some will be found guilty
in the future, unfortunately.

However, now that one Bishop has been sentenced for his
failure to act against criminal activity on his watch, the other
Bishops will be more mindful of their responsibilities, imo.

Posted on Nov 1, 2012 4:11:57 PM PDT
JOHN DOE says:
Mary: Mother of God
Fundamentalists are sometimes horrified when the Virgin Mary is referred to as the Mother of God. However, their reaction often rests upon a misapprehension of not only what this particular title of Mary signifies but also who Jesus was, and what their own theological forebears, the Protestant Reformers, had to say regarding this doctrine.

A woman is a man's mother either if she carried him in her womb or if she was the woman contributing half of his genetic matter or both. Mary was the mother of Jesus in both of these senses; because she not only carried Jesus in her womb but also supplied all of the genetic matter for his human body, since it was through her-not Joseph-that Jesus "was descended from David according to the flesh" (Rom. 1:3).

Since Mary is Jesus' mother, it must be concluded that she is also the Mother of God: If Mary is the mother of Jesus, and if Jesus is God, then Mary is the Mother of God. There is no way out of this logical syllogism, the valid form of which has been recognized by classical logicians since before the time of Christ.

Although Mary is the Mother of God, she is not his mother in the sense that she is older than God or the source of her Son's divinity, for she is neither. Rather, we say that she is the Mother of God in the sense that she carried in her womb a divine person-Jesus Christ, God "in the flesh" (2 John 7, cf. John 1:14)-and in the sense that she contributed the genetic matter to the human form God took in Jesus Christ.

To avoid this conclusion, Fundamentalists often assert that Mary did not carry God in her womb, but only carried Christ's human nature. This assertion reinvents a heresy from the fifth century known as Nestorianism, which runs aground on the fact that a mother does not merely carry the human nature of her child in her womb. Rather, she carries the person of her child. Women do not give birth to human natures; they give birth to persons. Mary thus carried and gave birth to the person of Jesus Christ, and the person she gave birth to was God.

The Nestorian claim that Mary did not give birth to the unified person of Jesus Christ attempts to separate Christ's human nature from his divine nature, creating two separate and distinctpersons-one divine and one human-united in a loose affiliation. It is therefore a Christological heresy, which even the Protestant Reformers recognized. Both Martin Luther and John Calvin insisted on Mary's divine maternity. In fact, it even appears that Nestorius himself may not have believed the heresy named after him. Further, the "Nestorian" church has now signed a joint declaration on Christology with the Catholic Church and recognizes Mary's divine maternity, just as other Christians do.

Since denying that Mary is God's mother implies doubt about Jesus' divinity, it is clear why Christians (until recent times) have been unanimous in proclaiming Mary as Mother of God.

The Church Fathers, of course, agreed, and the following passages witness to their lively recognition of the sacred truth and great gift of divine maternity that was bestowed upon Mary, the humble handmaid of the Lord.



Irenaeus


"The Virgin Mary, being obedient to his word, received from an angel the glad tidings that she would bear God" (Against Heresies, 5:19:1 [A.D. 189]).



Hippolytus


"[T]o all generations they [the prophets] have pictured forth the grandest subjects for contemplation and for action. Thus, too, they preached of the advent of God in the flesh to the world, his advent by the spotless and God-bearing (theotokos) Mary in the way of birth and growth, and the manner of his life and conversation with men, and his manifestation by baptism, and the new birth that was to be to all men, and the regeneration by the laver [of baptism]" (Discourse on the End of the World 1 [A.D. 217]).



Gregory the Wonderworker


"For Luke, in the inspired Gospel narratives, delivers a testimony not to Joseph only, but also to Mary, the Mother of God, and gives this account with reference to the very family and house of David" (Four Homilies 1 [A.D. 262]).

"It is our duty to present to God, like sacrifices, all the festivals and hymnal celebrations; and first of all, [the feast of] the Annunciation to the holy Mother of God, to wit, the salutation made to her by the angel, `Hail, full of grace!'" (ibid., 2).



Peter of Alexandria


"They came to the church of the most blessed Mother of God, and ever-virgin Mary, which, as we began to say, he had constructed in the western quarter, in a suburb, for a cemetery of the martyrs" (The Genuine Acts of Peter of Alexandria [A.D. 305]).

"We acknowledge the resurrection of the dead, of which Jesus Christ our Lord became the firstling; he bore a body not in appearance but in truth derived from Mary the Mother of God" (Letter to All Non-Egyptian Bishops 12 [A.D. 324]).



Methodius


"While the old man [Simeon] was thus exultant, and rejoicing with exceeding great and holy joy, that which had before been spoken of in a figure by the prophet Isaiah, the holy Mother of God now manifestly fulfilled" (Oration on Simeon and Anna 7 [A.D. 305]).

"Hail to you forever, you virgin Mother of God, our unceasing joy, for unto you do I again return. . . . Hail, you fount of the Son's love for man. . . . Wherefore, we pray you, the most excellent among women, who boast in the confidence of your maternal honors, that you would unceasingly keep us in remembrance. O holy Mother of God, remember us, I say, who make our boast in you, and who in august hymns celebrate your memory, which will ever live, and never fade away" (ibid., 14).



Cyril of Jerusalem


"The Father bears witness from heaven to his Son. The Holy Spirit bears witness, coming down bodily in the form of a dove. The archangel Gabriel bears witness, bringing the good tidings to Mary. The Virgin Mother of God bears witness" (Catechetical Lectures 10:19 [A.D. 350]).



Ephraim the Syrian


"Though still a virgin she carried a child in her womb, and the handmaid and work of his wisdom became the Mother of God" (Songs of Praise 1:20 [A.D. 351]).



Athanasius


"The Word begotten of the Father from on high, inexpressibly, inexplicably, incomprehensibly, and eternally, is he that is born in time here below of the Virgin Mary, the Mother of God" (The Incarnation of the Word of God 8 [A.D. 365]).



Epiphanius of Salamis


"Being perfect at the side of the Father and incarnate among us, not in appearance but in truth, he [the Son] reshaped man to perfection in himself from Mary the Mother of God through the Holy Spirit" (The Man Well-Anchored 75 [A.D. 374]).



Ambrose of Milan


"The first thing which kindles ardor in learning is the greatness of the teacher. What is greater than the Mother of God? What more glorious than she whom Glory Itself chose?" (The Virgins 2:2[7] [A.D. 377]).



Gregory of Nazianz


"If anyone does not agree that holy Mary is Mother of God, he is at odds with the Godhead" (Letter to Cledonius the Priest 101 [A.D. 382]).



Jerome


"As to how a virgin became the Mother of God, he [Rufinus] has full knowledge; as to how he himself was born, he knows nothing" (Against Rufinus 2:10 [A.D. 401]).

"Do not marvel at the novelty of the thing, if a Virgin gives birth to God" (Commentaries on Isaiah 3:7:15 [A.D. 409]).



Theodore of Mopsuestia


"When, therefore, they ask, `Is Mary mother of man or Mother of God?' we answer, `Both!' The one by the very nature of what was done and the other by relation" (The Incarnation 15 [A.D. 405]).



Cyril of Alexandria


"I have been amazed that some are utterly in doubt as to whether or not the holy Virgin is able to be called the Mother of God. For if our Lord Jesus Christ is God, how should the holy Virgin who bore him not be the Mother of God?" (Letter to the Monks of Egypt 1 [A.D. 427]).

"This expression, however, `the Word was made flesh' [John 1:14], can mean nothing else but that he partook of flesh and blood like to us; he made our body his own, and came forth man from a woman, not casting off his existence as God, or his generation of God the Father, but even in taking to himself flesh remaining what he was. This the declaration of the correct faith proclaims everywhere. This was the sentiment of the holy Fathers; therefore they ventured to call the holy Virgin `the Mother of God,' not as if the nature of the Word or his divinity had its beginning from the holy Virgin, but because of her was born that holy body with a rational soul, to which the Word, being personally united, is said to be born according to the flesh" (First Letter to Nestorius [A.D. 430]).

"And since the holy Virgin corporeally brought forth God made one with flesh according to nature, for this reason we also call her Mother of God, not as if the nature of the Word had the beginning of its existence from the flesh" (Third Letter to Nestorius [A.D. 430]).

"If anyone will not confess that the Emmanuel is very God, and that therefore the holy Virgin is the Mother of God, inasmuch as in the flesh she bore the Word of God made flesh [John 1:14]: let him be anathema" (ibid.).



John Cassian


"Now, you heretic, you say (whoever you are who deny that God was born of the Virgin), that Mary, the Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ, cannot be called the Mother of God, but the Mother only of Christ and not of God-for no one, you say, gives birth to one older than herself. And concerning this utterly stupid argument . . . let us prove by divine testimonies both that Christ is God and that Mary is the Mother of God" (On the Incarnation of Christ Against Nestorius 2:2 [A.D. 429]).

"You cannot then help admitting that the grace comes from God. It is God, then, who has given it. But it has been given by our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore the Lord Jesus Christ is God. But if he is God, as he certainly is, then she who bore God is the Mother of God" (ibid., 2:5).



Council of Ephesus


"We confess, then, our Lord Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, perfect God and perfect man, of a rational soul and a body, begotten before all ages from the Father in his Godhead, the same in the last days, for us and for our salvation, born of Mary the Virgin according to his humanity, one and the same consubstantial with the Father in Godhead and consubstantial with us in humanity, for a union of two natures took place. Therefore we confess one Christ, one Son, one Lord. According to this understanding of the unconfused union, we confess the holy Virgin to be the Mother of God because God the Word took flesh and became man and from his very conception united to himself the temple he took from her" (Formula of Union [A.D. 431]).



Vincent of Lerins


"Nestorius, whose disease is of an opposite kind, while pretending that he holds two distinct substances in Christ, brings in of a sudden two persons, and with unheard-of wickedness would have two sons of God, two Christs,-one, God, the other, man; one, begotten of his Father, the other, born of his mother. For which reason he maintains that Saint Mary ought to be called, not the Mother of God, but the Mother of Christ" (The Notebooks 12[35] [A.D. 434]).


NIHIL OBSTAT: I have concluded that the materials
presented in this work are free of doctrinal or moral errors.
Bernadeane Carr, STL, Censor Librorum, August 10, 2004

IMPRIMATUR: In accord with 1983 CIC 827
permission to publish this work is hereby granted.
+Robert H. Brom, Bishop of San Diego, August 10, 2004

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:26:41 PM PDT
down2erth says:
All this proves is that many, many people had mistaken ideas about Mary and Jesus - ;o)

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:29:37 PM PDT
down2erth says:
yeah, you forgot to mention that the idea was developed over centuries by imperfect men who were not inspired of God, and did not rely on the Bible for guidance.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:30:49 PM PDT
Jesus4us says:
3) "It's not in the Bible" -- doesn't have to be

spl: Well, then, I decree that Madonna is sinless. The singer.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:33:59 PM PDT
JOHN DOE says:
down - don't you think it would be more appropriate to say that many people have different ideas - after all, unless someone was there to witness first hand then they have to rely on the word of someone else who was not there and that person's interpretation, which was based on someone elses, who was not there, inerpretation etc., etc., - just saying...

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:37:08 PM PDT
Jesus4us says:
The Catholics make a big deal out of apostolic succession, but God had made a joke of it, with all your crazy popes and pedophile priests. No one has the power to insure someone won't go off and be a pedophile, so what power is there in apostolic succession, really?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:42:16 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Nov 1, 2012 4:45:41 PM PDT
Jesus4us says:
Since denying that Mary is God's mother implies doubt about Jesus' divinity, it is clear why Christians (until recent times) have been unanimous in proclaiming Mary as Mother of God.

The Church Fathers, of course, agreed, and the following passages witness to their lively recognition of the sacred truth and great gift of divine maternity that was bestowed upon Mary, the humble handmaid of the Lord.

spl: So what? So she bore Jesus, the son of God. It has no real significance to it. It doesn't make her anything. Any woman could have done it. In comparision with Jesus's mission it's inconsequential who His mother was. Which He made clear by saying that what was important was being one of His disciples, not that Mary bore Him.

All the veneration of Mary came from pagan goddess worship infiltrating the RCC. All the "church fathers" loved their mommies, and didn't want her to be left out of the adoration. It's that simple.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:47:31 PM PDT
Jesus4us says:
down2erth says:
All this proves is that many, many people had mistaken ideas about Mary and Jesus - ;o)

spl: Bingo!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:48:14 PM PDT
Raulito says:
Steve,

"but God made a joke of it, with all your crazy popes and pedophile priests..."

Don't forget Judas Iscariot, one of the apostles, a traitor and greedy man. The sins of leaders was already there, in the 1st century.

"so what power is there in apostolic succession, really?

A Protestant pastor can give a wonderful sermons, and bring millions to Christ, and the pastor may still go out and rape someone, or commit a crime. Jimmy Swaggar and Jim Bakker are examples of this.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:48:50 PM PDT
JOHN DOE says:
stevey boy - glad to see you back - I see you have more usless drivil to spew forth and bore everyone to death - tell me something - since you believe you are the only one who is ever right and anyone who disagrees with you deserves your terse rebukes, have you elevated yourself to god status yet - just wondering...

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:50:29 PM PDT
Jesus4us says:
"Nestorius, whose disease is of an opposite kind, while pretending that he holds two distinct substances in Christ, brings in of a sudden two persons, and with unheard-of wickedness would have two sons of God, two Christs,-one, God, the other, man; one, begotten of his Father, the other, born of his mother. For which reason he maintains that Saint Mary ought to be called, not the Mother of God, but the Mother of Christ" (The Notebooks 12[35] [A.D. 434]).

spl: Yeah, it makes a LOT more sense to call Mary the mother of Christ. Calling her the mother of God is asking for trouble.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:53:21 PM PDT
Jesus4us says:
"but God made a joke of it, with all your crazy popes and pedophile priests..."

raul: Don't forget Judas Iscariot, one of the apostles, a traitor and greedy man. The sins of leaders was already there, in the 1st century.

spl: But that's not the point. Apostolic succession has no power if the apostles chosen turn out to be pedophiles and crazy men.

"so what power is there in apostolic succession, really?

raul: A Protestant pastor can give a wonderful sermons, and bring millions to Christ, and the pastor may still go out and rape someone, or commit a crime. Jimmy Swaggar and Jim Bakker are examples of this.

spl: So why have apostolic succession, then?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:53:37 PM PDT
JOHN DOE says:
stevey - is that an example of cherry picking on your part - just asking...

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:55:29 PM PDT
Jesus4us says:
Just the Facts says:
stevey boy - glad to see you back - I see you have more usless drivil to spew forth and bore everyone to death - tell me something - since you believe you are the only one who is ever right and anyone who disagrees with you deserves your terse rebukes, have you elevated yourself to god status yet - just wondering...

spl: Snore.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:56:12 PM PDT
Jesus4us says:
Just the Facts says:
stevey - is that an example of cherry picking on your part - just asking...

spl: No, you're not "just asking". You're a liar.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:58:59 PM PDT
Raulito says:
Steve,

"Apostolic succession has no power if the apostles chosen turn out to be pedophiles and crazy men..."

Not true. Apostolic authority means the person has the authority from Christ, but this in no way means the leader will not fall into sin.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 5:00:00 PM PDT
Raulito says:
Steve,

"So why have apostolic succession, then?

Because apostolic succession connects the present Church with the apostolic church, as a single church. Not as rivaling churches, or not as new churches, or branches.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 5:08:34 PM PDT
Jesus4us says:
Not true. Apostolic authority means the person has the authority from Christ, but this in no way means the leader will not fall into sin.

spl: Or heresy. Then what good is it?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 5:15:03 PM PDT
Thank you.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 5:20:08 PM PDT
Raulito says:
Steve,

"Or heresy. Then what good is it?

Individual bishops may fall into error and teach error, and individual Christians may also fall into error, but the Church (as the Body of Christ) cannot fall into error in heresy and doubt. That is why the Church, as a whole cannot teach anything false, and the Apostolic college of body of bishops cannot teach anything false as the very Body empowered and established by Jesus to teach with his authority.

The church, established with the Twelve to teach in his name, cannot be overcome with error, as a single body "..I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.." Matthew 16:18.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 5:24:10 PM PDT
Roll Tide!!! says:
"Because apostolic succession connects the present Church with the apostolic church, as a single church."
Jesus connects the church throughout time. No man needed. Ever.
Apostolic succession is a false teaching.

It is His body, always has been, always will be.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 5:39:05 PM PDT
What do you mean by Apostolic Succession?

You state "Jesus connects the church through out time. No man needed. Ever." This is true.

Then you state: "Apostolic succession is a false teaching." How so? If the apostles had not passed on their power to their successors, who would have received the powers of authority and how?

You concluded: "It is His body, always has been, always will be." True, but what does that have to do with Apostolic Succession?
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