Scriptural Proof: Mary is Not the Mother of God

Linus7

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I think we tend to forget the source of such Protestant heresies: the devil.

We refrain from saying it and "calling a spade a spade" because our pluralistic society has elevated what is now called "tolerance" to the rank of Supreme Virtue. We wouldn't want to offend the heretics.

But Satan hates the Mother of God and will do all he can to bring her into disrepute. Look at the Jews' "Pantherus" or "Pantera" story.

"And the dragon was enraged with the woman . . ." (Rev. 12:17).
 

Linus7

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Br. Max said:
linus: according to CF Momrons and JW are NOT even allowed to be considered Christians.
Well, as you yourself know only too well, neither are MJs.

Just ask them. They will tell you themselves that they are not Christians.
 

Doubting Thomas

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As a Protestant inquirer drawn to Orthodoxy, I don't see any problem with calling Mary, "Theotokos", as that's what she was. The one she conceived and bore in her womb was God Incarnate.

The problems I (yet) have with Mariology is what seems to my (at least nominally) Protestant ears to be Mariolatry when I read statements like this taken from the Akathist:
"Priest: Our most gracious Queen, our hope, O Theotokos, Who receivest the orphaned and art the intercessor for the stranger; the joy of those in sorrow, protectress of the wronged, see our distress, see our affliction! Help us, for we are helpless. Feed us, for we are strangers and pilgrims. Thou knowest our offences; forgive them, and resolve them as Thou dost will. For we know no other help but Thee, no other intercessor, no gracious comforter, only Thee, O Theotokos to guard and protect us for ages of ages. Amen."

This sounds like a prayer to a deity. How could one call Mary the only "intercessor" or "gracious comforter" or "help" when Biblically the Holy Spirit has these roles? Is this prayer exclusively attributing to Mary what more properly may be attributed to God the Holy Spirit?

I know, I know...Mary and the saints intercede for us much as our friends down here do with their prayers. I guess my big hang-up is the idea about there being no other intercessor, comforter, or help than Mary. Seems to me that such exclusive titles should be reserved for God alone.



 

Br Max OFC

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Thomas don't the scriptures tell us:

1 - pray one for another

and

2 - seek the prayers of the righteous

WHO is more righteous than those in heaven with God, and among those - she who gave birth to Him and was keep from corruption by Him?
 

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I was just reading how as one progresses towards Theosis, the prayers offered up are in effect strengthened as they are offered by one more in communion with God. How much more then, are the prayers of His mother received.
 

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From A Night in the Desert of the Holy Mountain The Fruits of the Jesus Prayer:

The ascetic, then, aquires great love for Jesus Christ through the Jesus prayer, and he is joined with Him through this love. It is natural, therefore, for him to love whatever God loves and desire whatever He desires. God "desires all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth" (1 Tit. 2. 4). This is what the athlete of prayer wants. He is shaken by the evil that exists in the world and grieves deeply for the loss and the ignorance of his brothers. Since sin always has ecclesiastical and cosmic dimensions and affects the entire world, it is natural that he who prays experiences all the tragedy of humanity and suffers deeply for her. He lives the agony of the Lord in Gethsemane. He reaches a point, therefore, where he ceases praying for himself and prays continually for others, to come to the knowledge of God. His purification from passions, his acquisition of the life-giving divine grace, and prayer for others -which is the result of his experiencing the unity of mankind in Jesus Christ- is the greatest mission. This is how the Fathers saw the missionary effort: as a striving for the renewal of the human being and a reintegration of nature. Each person who is purified becomes a valuable part of society, as we are all members of the blessed body of Christ. We can see this vividly in the person of the Most Holy Mother of God. She was "full of grace", and then bestowed grace and adorned all of human nature. Purified and "full of grace", she prays for the whole world. And thus we can say that the Most Holy Mother of God performs the greatest mission of all and benefits all of mankind effectively.

 

Doubting Thomas

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Br. Max said:
Thomas don't the scriptures tell us:

1 - pray one for another

and

2 - seek the prayers of the righteous

WHO is more righteous than those in heaven with God, and among those - she who gave birth to Him and was keep from corruption by Him?
I'm not arguing with those points. (In fact, I pretty much agree with them. ) I'm concerned about the wording that says she's the only "intercessor", "comforter", and "help". That "only" would seem, at the very least, to rule out the intercession of the other saints.
 

Linus7

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Doubting Thomas said:
As a Protestant inquirer drawn to Orthodoxy, I don't see any problem with calling Mary, "Theotokos", as that's what she was. The one she conceived and bore in her womb was God Incarnate.

The problems I (yet) have with Mariology is what seems to my (at least nominally) Protestant ears to be Mariolatry when I read statements like this taken from the Akathist:
"Priest: Our most gracious Queen, our hope, O Theotokos, Who receivest the orphaned and art the intercessor for the stranger; the joy of those in sorrow, protectress of the wronged, see our distress, see our affliction! Help us, for we are helpless. Feed us, for we are strangers and pilgrims. Thou knowest our offences; forgive them, and resolve them as Thou dost will. For we know no other help but Thee, no other intercessor, no gracious comforter, only Thee, O Theotokos to guard and protect us for ages of ages. Amen."

This sounds like a prayer to a deity. How could one call Mary the only "intercessor" or "gracious comforter" or "help" when Biblically the Holy Spirit has these roles? Is this prayer exclusively attributing to Mary what more properly may be attributed to God the Holy Spirit?

I know, I know...Mary and the saints intercede for us much as our friends down here do with their prayers. I guess my big hang-up is the idea about there being no other intercessor, comforter, or help than Mary. Seems to me that such exclusive titles should be reserved for God alone.
I can understand how you feel about such language, DT. Honestly, some of it seems a bit excessive even to me.

I think what is meant is that there is no better merely human intercessor or advocate than the Blessed Virgin.

Perhaps there is a better explanation for some of the language of the Akathist you quoted. It seems to me to be hyperbolic. I think the background for such a prayer and hymn of praise is the full understanding of the part Mary played in the salvation of mankind. Without that background, that Akathist certainly would seem out of line.

Whatever help, intercession, and comfort Mary can supply comes only because of her Son.
 

Doubting Thomas

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Vicki said:
Doubting Thomas said:
This sounds like a prayer to a deity. How could one call Mary the only "intercessor" or "gracious comforter" or "help" when Biblically the Holy Spirit has these roles? Is this prayer exclusively attributing to Mary what more properly may be attributed to God the Holy Spirit?
The Holy Spirit isn't an "intercessor" as one of the Trinity....as I understand it.
This is what I had in mind...

"Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God." Romans 8:26-27
 

Linus7

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Where did you get that Akathist, DT?

Those in my Orthodox prayer books do not contain the lines you quoted.
 

Doubting Thomas

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Linus7 said:
Where did you get that Akathist, DT?

Those in my Orthodox prayer books do not contain the lines you quoted.
Linus, here's the link:
http://www.fatheralexander.org/booklets/english/m_akathist_e.htm

Scroll down to the bottom and then count up to the fourth (from the bottom) Priest paragraph. It's in that paragraph.
 

Linus7

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Doubting Thomas said:
Linus7 said:
Where did you get that Akathist, DT?

Those in my Orthodox prayer books do not contain the lines you quoted.
Linus, here's the link:
http://www.fatheralexander.org/booklets/english/m_akathist_e.htm

Scroll down to the bottom and then count up to the fourth (from the bottom) Priest paragraph. It's in that paragraph.
Curious.

It's there where you said it is, all right, but it's not in the Akathists in my prayer books, and I've never heard those lines in any Orthodox Church.

Strange.
 

Doubting Thomas

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Linus7 said:
Curious.

It's there where you said it is, all right, but it's not in the Akathists in my prayer books, and I've never heard those lines in any Orthodox Church.

Strange.
Yeah, and I certainly can't explain it. I've never seen an Orthodox prayer book, and I have not heard that sentiment in either of the Orthodox services I attended. I just assumed in reading this, however, that this was not an uncommon prayer in Orthodox worship.

Can anyone else explain it? ???
 

TomS

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Hey DT.

You are right in that The Akathis him is "over the top". The first time I went to the service, when I left I was pretty disgusted with what I had heard. To me it IS almost like a service to a deity.

So, I just don't go to it anymore.

There most definitely is a "Cult of Mary" in the Orthodox Church that makes me very uncomfortable. I have talked to my Priest about it, and he said that I can't expect to agree with everything that my Church does, just focus in on the important parts.



 

prodromos

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TomS,

Jesus Christ glorifies His mother. The church is the body of Christ. We, the body of Christ, with Christ at the head, glorify His mother. These hymns have been written by saints in the church, people filled with the Holy Spirit who were inspired by God to write these words.

It might help to put yourself in the shoes of someone in 1st century Palestine who has just received the gospel with joy. Then you learn that the mother of Christ your saviour is still alive and living a few hours away. Filled with awe and wonder you go to visit her to meet this wondrous lady.

Me personally, I would probably fall at her feet with tears in my eyes and not stop thanking her and praising her for her part in my salvation. I would definitely beg her to pray to her Son on my behalf and would quickly come to love her almost as much as I loved her Son.

Now since her falling asleep, Mary has appeared many times to christians and non christians alike, directly interceding for them, saving entire cities from invasion (and countries) either personally or through the many miracle working icons of her. The churchs experience of her intercessions has grown immensely since that time and it is no wonder that the hymnography of the church reflects that.

I can understand your difficulty in accepting the place Mary has in the church as I have been through all that myself (still struggling through it actually). but I have come to understand that it is impossible to truly love God and not have the same love and devotion to His mother. That love will of course spread to all the saints as we begin to see Christ in them, and as we become more pure we will see Christ in all men and women and love them accordingly.

Orthodoxy is a package deal and I hope you will overcome these difficulties and be able to fully appreciate the church in all its fullness. Your priest's advice is good. Focus on loving God and a life of prayer, and in time everything else will fall into place for you.

John.
 

TomS

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prodromos said:
Orthodoxy is a package deal and I hope you will overcome these difficulties and be able to fully appreciate the church in all its fullness. Your priest's advice is good. Focus on loving God and a life of prayer, and in time everything else will fall into place for you.
I am sorry John, but Orthodoxy is NOT a packaged deal. Orthodoxy is a FORM of worship, a way to RELATE to God. It is not a checklist.

If it was a "packaged deal" then throughout history ALL Orthodox would be adhering strictly to ALL the Canons of the Church.


 

Linus7

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I think TomS and Doubting Thomas were not referring to the veneration of the Blessed Virgin per se but rather to these specific words of the Akathist quoted by Doubting Thomas: "For we know no other help but Thee, no other intercessor, no gracious comforter, only Thee, O Theotokos to guard and protect us for ages of ages. Amen."

That passage does seem somewhat excessive even to me, and I very much love and venerate the all-holy Mother of God.

Of course the Blessed Virgin is our intercessor and comforter, etc., but are there no others? No other source of help?

That is the idea that TomS and DT reacted to negatively.

I could not find that passage in the Akathists in my prayer books.

And frankly, although I pray to the Blessed Virgin to intercede for me and my family and I am happy to praise and venerate her, I would not feel comfortable saying "no other help, no other intercessor, no gracious comforter, only Thee," simply because such exclusive language is not true.

Our Lord Himself called the Holy Spirit the Comforter (John 14:26), and we know that God is our ever-present help and Christ our intercessor with the Father (Ps. 40:17; Heb. 7:25).

Perhaps someone can explain the excessive-sounding language of the Akathist quoted by DT.

Until such an explanation, however, I cannot see how it could be right.
 

TomS

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Linus7 said:
I think TomS and Doubting Thomas were not referring to the veneration of the Blessed Virgin but rather to these specific words of the Akathist quoted by Doubting Thomas
That is correct Linus. I certainly revere, respect and love the blessed Theotokos, but sometimes I think that this reverence is taken a little too far.
 
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