Skip to comments.Why Did Mary Offer a Sin Offering? [Ecumenical]
Posted on 07/19/2009 2:17:43 PM PDT by NYer
click here to read article
You are the one who wrote, What do you call that place where people enter for purification after judgement, and following the purification they are saved?
If, as you now say, you “enjoy explaining Catholic doctrine”, you might want to to get better at it.
You also wrote, “What you believe contrary to scripture is of no concern here, as the thread is about Catholic Mariology, not your theological fantasies.”
This would be true, if this were a closed thread. However, since it is open, those of us who differ are allowed to dispute your assertions.
If my comments are “theological fantasies”, those who read them can decide for themselves. However, you must understand that your inability to do anything other than ASSERT catholic doctrine makes those on the fence more likely to side with me than you.
On most issues, it boils down to this: If you accept Catholic doctrine, then you MUST interpret scripture accordingly, no matter how much it twists the words around. If you do not accept Catholic doctrine, you are free to let the text speak for itself. I suspect this is why Erasmus found it challenging to interpret Scripture, and why Luther laughed at him.
When the sinlessness of Mary rests on the misunderstanding about what a perfect past participle implies, and this on one verse...then the whole edifice rests on sand. One grain.
Believe what you wish, but I retain the right on open threads to dispute it.
As you said, it would be very odd for Christ to give Mary to John to take care of had He had other brothers. He would have been breaking Jewish law. In that day, “brothers” was used for cousins too. The term “firstborn” was a title of honor given to your first child, whether or not you had more. In Mt 13:55-56 four men are names as brothers of the Lord. However, at least two of them, James and Joseph, were the sons of Mary the wife of Cleophas. Also, when the family journeyed to the Temple and lost Jesus, no mention was made of other children or “brothers” of any kind.
There is more evidence that Christ was an only child than there is that He wasn’t .
I’m sorry, Mr. Rogers, but that’s just not true. History teaches us that all Christians answered to Peter and his successors for several hundred years. For many generations, all Christians knew and accepted the Apostolic succession. St. Paul bowed to Peter’s authority and all the “rituals” the Apostles set up.
All who wish to review Scripture about Apostolic Succession should review:
Acts 1:15-26, Acts 14:23, Acts 20:28
1 Cor 12:27-31
Eph 4:11, Eph 2:19-21
1 Tim 3:1-13, 1 Tim 4:13-14, 1 Tim 5:17-22, 2 Tim 2:1-2
Titus 1: 5-9
I hope you will review these passages from one of the original translations of the Bible.
You can post anything you want, I simply point out what the focus of the thread is, and therefore what the focus of my responses will be.
“As you said, it would be very odd for Christ to give Mary to John to take care of had He had other brothers. He would have been breaking Jewish law.”
It is also very odd if Mary had step-sons who could take care of her. If a woman had no sons, her step sons should take care of her.
“In that day, brothers was used for cousins too.”
Yes, and even today we can use ‘brothers’ to speak of associates with no family relations. However, there WERE words for cousin, and they were commonly used. And nowhere in Scripture are they referred to as cousins. They were also always, while she lived, associated with Mary.
“The term firstborn was a title of honor given to your first child, whether or not you had more.”
Not exactly. When Luke wrote of John the Baptist, he didn’t call him ‘firstborn’. I’m not saying it is wrong, just that it wasn’t used by Luke when describing John.
“In Mt 13:55-56 four men are names as brothers of the Lord. However, at least two of them, James and Joseph, were the sons of Mary the wife of Cleophas.”
What it says is, “55 Is not this the carpenters son? Is not his mother called Mary? And are not his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? 56And are not all his sisters with us?”
The idea that James and Joseph were the sons of “Mary the wife of Cleophas” was first proposed by Jerome, and his ‘proof’ is a bit underwhelming. It certainly is not provable from Scripture.
And at the Temple, it was Jesus who was extraordinary.
Yes. As a general proposition the plain natural reading of the Scripture is also the Catholic reading. It requires a mariophobic mind of a 20c Protestant to invent the doctrine of sinfulness or non-virginity of Mary when there is zero scriptural support for it, then demand prooftexts from Catholics.
My point is that Paul was arguing jesus was the Christ (the messiah, the Anointed One), who died and was raised “according to the scriptures.” What scriptures? Not the Jewish ones for sure. And the NT did not exist yet.
I’ll try to write later about the church fathers. I don’t have much heartburn with those in the first few centuries, but it helps to remember that those living as early as 250 were as remote from the Apostles as we are from the Mexican War. That isn’t as remote as some might think - my great grandfather fought in the Civil War - but it isn’t exactly concurrent. This is all the more true given the difficulty in travel and how difficult it could be to access writings from many sources.
I read a book about the Civil War recently, and was struck by how utterly different culture was then. I’m still limping a bit 6 months after taking a tumble from a horse. There were guys then who had horses roll over them, who within a week were riding 50 miles a day and more in winter weather.
One Lt General, in battle, cut the head off of one man with a sword just before the man could kill his aide. He had over two dozen horses shot out from under him. I’ve met a number of 3 & 4 star Generals...we’re pretty remote from that culture as well.
By 400 AD, they were debating and excommunicating each other over issues like the exact nature of Jesus within the Trinity. Now the Trinity is plainly taught in Scripture, but it isn’t explored the way a Greek philosopher would - and that is how they debated it.
I’ve accused Luther of being the ‘Ann Coulter of the Reformation’, and I sometimes fall into the same trap. And it may be that I will need to back down from my statement. It certainly wouldn’t be the first time I’ve apologized!
However, by 400+ AD, most of the ‘fathers’ were acting as though they cared more about their rhetorical reputation and intellectual standing than they were caring for the flock. And by this time, they were as remote from the Apostles as we are from the American Revolution.
You talk of my hubris - which is pretty great, I’ll agree - but what about the hubris of someone who thinks they can not only reason out the inner workings of the Trinity, but do it so well as to damn to hell anyone who disagrees? My hubris is limited to saying that what God has revealed about Himself, we can accept, but we cannot fully reason out and comprehend. I’m humble compared to the church fathers.
My hubris is enough that I will substitute teach in a Sunday School class, but not enough for me to set myself up as The Authority Over All American Churches (ref the Coptic Church, and others).
“So an American in the 21st century—a TOTALLY different culture than that represented in the New Testament—with no direct access to the original Scriptures, reading a bad English translation, without the requisite background in Latin, koine Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic languages, knows better than the early Church Fathers living in the first several centuries of the Church...”
You overstate the case here. It is not uncommon to bridge cultures. My Filipina wife does it daily, and I’ve traveled to many different countries. The Greek and Hebrew texts we can buy on the Internet today are probably as good as what most had access to in 400 AD. I have a number of EXCELLENT translations, and lexicons and access to books of word studies that are useful. I have commentaries and studies written by people who are expert in all those languages.
What did strike me as I read about the church fathers this week was how familiar it seemed in spite of the time gap...the arrogance, the pettiness, and the concern for power.
Oh well. Like I said, I’ll write more later. If I need to apologize, I will. I’ve had lots of practice...
Referring to Mary as the NT Ark of the Covenant is a stretch as the AOC was representative of the Mercy Seat of God. It was kept in the Holy of Holies in the temple and was visited only by the Levite high priest once a year for the Day of Atonement sacrifice.
God's special Shekinah glory dwelt on the Mercy Seat atop the Ark of the Covenant. According to the prophet Jeremiah (3:15-17) the Ark of the Covenant will play an important future role.
The Ark of the Covenant was made of acacia wood and covered outside and inside in pure gold. It was 45 inches 27 inches by 27 inches. Three sacred things were placed inside the Ark of the Covenant. Inside were Aaron's sacred rod, which was used to perform miracles in front of Pharaoh; manna, which God gave the Israelites to eat in the wilderness; and, the Ten Commandments on tablets of stone.
To the ancient Hebrews, the Ark was both a divine manifestation and a talisman so powerful that they carried it with them into battle a weapon of God.
With that history, I fail to see the comparison of the Ark to Mary. It sounds as if you are saying Mary is the new way to come into the presence of God. When Jesus was crucified, the veil that separated the Holy of Holies from the rest of the temple was ripped into two, showing that we can all approach the throne of God and the need for an atoning sacrifice was no longer needed. Jesus was the “Lamb of God who took away the sins of the world” and was the propitiation (satisfactory payment) for our sins and not just expiation (a covering only until the Messiah came).
If Mary were sinless, she would have committed a sin when she declared herself a sinner in need of redemption.
If Mary were sinless, the entire word of God would be made a lie. No savior would be needed if even one mortal were able to be born without sin. She had a mortal father, thus she lived a life punctuated by sin.
That’s exactly my point, Mr. Rogers. Mary had no sons or stepsons to take care of her. She had no other children. Christ, who loved her, gave her to the disciple He loved most to take care of her. He found the best person He could for her so she wouldn’t be alone.
In the Aramaic language of Jesus’ time, there was no word for cousin. Jesus and the Apostles spoke Aramaic. When they related the good news of Christ to others, they used Aramaic. Everyone knew what they meant when they said “brothers.”
I’m not sure what your point is about John the Baptist. Jesus is the Firstborn, and labeled as such, to show that He is the fulfillment of the Scriptures about the Messiah. John did not need to be a Firstborn to be the great prophet he was and to fulfill Scripture.
In Mt 13:55-56 the Aramaic speaking relatives of Jesus are speaking of Him. They cite Mary of Nazareth as His mother and His 4 male cousins as His “brothers” because they have no word for cousins in Aramaic. All male and female cousins at the time were called brothers and sisters.
Jerome’s proof that the “brothers” were the sons of Mary the wife of Cleophas, while you may find it underwhelming, is more proof than you’ve got that they weren’t. Jerome was quite the scholar and he was examining the historical record in an era much closer to Jesus’ time than we are. I’ll take his word for it. He is a saint, after all.
I’m not sure what your point about Jesus at the Temple is. Of course, Christ was extraordinary. But there is no mention of siblings in the passage. Indeed the tone of the passage is that the trio of Mary, Joseph, and Jesus were very much alone. Only Mary and Joseph went to look for Him. No one else is mentioned. Again, you are straining too hard to make the Scriptures mean what you’d like them to mean. The Gospels go to great lengths to mention all the people who were distressed at one time or another by their love for Jesus: Peter, the Apostles, Mary and Joseph, Mary Magdalene- they were all distressed at times by Christ’s actions; yet Jesus is missing and lost and no mention is made of distressed siblings. Just parents.
I will be signing off this thread now. But I do have a final point. This thread has been an interesting and courteous discussion, for the most part. I try to follow 1 Pet 3:15 in defending the faith: “Always be prepared to make a defense to any one who calls you to do it with gentleness and respect.” And if you need more Scriptural evidence for that approach, check out Phil 1:15-16 which reads, “Some indeed preach Christ from envy and rivalry, but others from good will. The latter do it out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel.”
Well, Mary IS a new way to come into the presence of God as she delivered Him, literally.
She did not. She declared Christ her Savior. She said nothing about her sin.
That is where you lost me. Why can’t it be the Jewish ones? Paul could’ve certainly argued that he was the Christ from the Jewish Scripture.
The answer will not be found in your religion, or your logic...
The answer will be found in the scriptures...
Joh 7:5 For neither did his brethren believe in him.
This is speaking of Jesus' brothers here...They did not believe He was the Messiah...So of course, Jesus sent His Mother to His favorite apostle, John rather than to His unbelieving brothers...
Obviously Jesus' brothers were saved 'after' the Resurrection...Jesus made a special appearance to His brother James, and likely the others as well...
1Co 15:7 After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles.
And we don't know one way or another, but Mary may have moved in with one of her Christian sons after they were saved...
Gal 1:19 But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord's brother.
BROTHER...Brother is Brother...
Luk 1:36 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.
COUSIN...Cousin is Cousin...Cousin is not Brother...
Col 4:10 Aristarchus, my fellow prisoner, saluteth you: and Mark, the cousin german of Barnabas, touching whom you have received commandments. If he come unto you, receive him.
Someone else's Cousin...Not, Brother...
There's no way around it...
Psa 69:8 I am become a stranger unto my brethren, and an alien unto my mother's children.
And as you can see, it is prophesied in the OT in the Hebrew language that Jesus would have brothers and sisters...
There is nothing to dispute...
First, the Aramaic language seems to have a word for cousin. I base that on this web site: http://www.peshitta.org/lexicon/
I looked up the Aramaic word for cousin. It had one, and it differed from the word for brother.
Also, the NT was written in Greek. It sometimes transliterates Aramaic words, but if the Holy Spirit was truly guiding the writer, then the Holy Spirit could have led him to use the Greek word for cousin as well...at least ONCE! Think of all the confusion this would have relieved!
I find it a bit odd that Catholics read so much into just the participle in Luke 1.28, yet ignore words when looking at other verses.
I guess I don’t understand why Jesus needed the inaccurate title ‘firstborn’ to show his greatness, but John did not. Also, it seems a bit foolish for the Holy Spirit to lead a man to use a word that has an obvious, well accepted and yet - according to Catholics - inaccurate word to describe Jesus. If the rest of Matthew’s account doesn’t convince someone that Jesus is the Messiah, I doubt the inaccurate use of ‘firstborn’ in chapter 1 will sway them!
Jerome wrote nearly 400 years later, and admitted he was looking for a way to reconcile Mary’s lifelong virginity with Scripture. If you wish a fuller discussion, you might try this: http://books.google.com/books?id=cgQQAAAAYAAJ&pg=PR3&lr=&as_brr=0&output=html
Jerome’s theory contradicts other church fathers closer to the events - although they use stepbrothers.
No it does not mean that righteousness is the gift at all!!! We seem to be in agreement that the gift was not merited but the gift is all the blessings that go along with being the "Mother of the Lord", but there is no intrinsic righteousness built into the gift.