Are there Bible verses that support Mary's sinlessness?


#1

My Uncle wants to discuss Mary, using the bible only. I need some verses that support our doctrine. I read the CA tract on Mary…but I need verses, good ole solo scrptura coming in to play here. Please pray that his mind will be open during our discussions. :love:


#2

If your uncle has a “Doubting Thomas” mindset of “unless I see it in Scripture I will not believe”, you won’t get very far in your discussion. He’ll want to see explicit verses that support Marian doctrines. There are none. While Scripture has a lot to say about Mary’s Immaculate Conception, her Assumption and her Perpetual Virginity, you won’t find these doctrines explicitly revealed in Scripture.

To claim that all doctrines must be clearly spelled out in Scripture is a Protestant invention without the slightest biblical basis. Point out to your uncle that even he accepts things that are not in the Bible. For example, he accepts that 27 books belong in it. That is a Catholic Tradition. He calls God “Trinity”, but that is an unbiblical word. The Bible never teaches that all we need to know is explicit in the Bible.

Before you enter a discussion with your uncle, I recommend you first do some homework. Start with Genesis 3:15. This is where we first see Mary, the “woman”; the Mother of the Messiah. She was the “New Eve” who the early Fathers say “the knot of Eve’s disobedience was united by Mary’s obedience: what the virgin Eve bound through her disbelief, Mary loosened by her faith” (Lumen Gentium 56). In Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, Dr. Ludwig Ott says the messianic-marian interpretation of Genesis 3:15 has been expounded by individual Fathers such as St. Irenaeus, St. Ephiphanius, St. Cyprian. He says that according to this interpretation, “Mary’s victory over Satan would not have been perfect, if she had ever been under his dominion. Consequently she must have entered this world without the stain of original sin.”

Continued below…


#3

Concerning why Mary was chosen by God to be immaculately conceived, *Lumen Gentium * explains it in this way:

  1. The Father of mercies willed that the incarnation should be preceded by the acceptance of her who was predestined to be the mother of His Son, so that just as a woman contributed to death, so also a woman should contribute to life. That is true in outstanding fashion of the mother of Jesus, who gave to the world Him who is Life itself and who renews all things, and who was enriched by God with the gifts which befit such a role. It is no wonder therefore that the usage prevailed among the Fathers whereby they called the mother of God entirely holy and free from all stain of sin, as though fashioned by the Holy Spirit and formed as a new creature.

Adorned from the first instant of her conception with the radiance of an entirely unique holiness, the Virgin of Nazareth is greeted, on God’s command, by an angel messenger as “full of grace”,(286) and to the heavenly messenger she replies: “Behold the handmaid of the Lord, be it done unto me according to thy word”.(287) Thus Mary, a daughter of Adam, consenting to the divine Word, became the mother of Jesus, the one and only Mediator. Embracing God’s salvific will with a full heart and impeded by no sin, she devoted herself totally as a handmaid of the Lord to the person and work of her Son, under Him and with Him, by the grace of almighty God, serving the mystery of redemption. Rightly therefore the holy Fathers see her as used by God not merely in a passive way, but as freely cooperating in the work of human salvation through faith and obedience.

For, as St. Irenaeus says, she “being obedient, became the cause of salvation for herself and for the whole human race.”(6*) Hence not a few of the early Fathers gladly assert in their preaching, “The knot of Eve’s disobedience was untied by Mary’s obedience; what the virgin Eve bound through her unbelief, the Virgin Mary loosened by her faith.”(7*) Comparing Mary with Eve, they call her “the Mother of the living,”(8*) and still more often they say: “death through Eve, life through Mary.”(9*)

Source:Lumen Gentium

Recommended reading:

The Immaculate Conception, the Bible, and the Church

I highly recommend Fr. Stefano M. Manelli’s excellent book All Generations Shall Call Me Blessed: Biblical Mariology. If you want Bible verses supporting Marian doctrines, this is the book for you.


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