I was always taught that Jesus was the only perfect man to walk the earth and die as a perfect man. The only other was Adam and Eve but they sinned and died. So how can Mary also be perfect if Jesus was the only perfect person. How do we know that Mary is perfect? I know the Church teachings are true I’m just looking for an explanation. Thank you! God bless!
It depends what you mean by ‘perfect’? We are all made perfect by Purgatory.
Jesus Christ = God. All knowing, powerful and loving being.
Mother Mary = perfected souls in Heaven. Mary was also perfect on this earth, so she did not ever need the perfect cleansing of her soul through Purgatory.
Jesus was God, BVM was created perfect massive difference. this doesn’t mean BVM = God, is that where your confusion lies. had eve and adam not sinned we would all have been perfect
How do we know Mary is perfect? Is it found in the bible?
The Church does not teach that Mary never made a mistake, that she never tripped and fell or that she didn’t add too much salt to a recipe.
Preserved from the stain of original sin and it’s consequences however, everything she did was ordered toward God.
Marion doctrines were a bit of a challenge for me when I was coming into the church. But certain things helped me to understand the church’s positions.
First, reading the Catechism was a great jumping off point.
I also had read the old testament, so for me, the endless descriptions of the Ark of the Covenant helped me to understand why the church believes that Mary had to be without the stain of sin. (The original Ark was so sacred that when someone unworthy touched it, even by accident, they were struck dead on the spot. 2Sa 6:12-19. It was to carry God’s written word. Mary was carrying God’s incarnate Word… his living Word. By inference you can assume that the new Ark was also free from blemish.)
As I began to think about Mary as the new Ark, it began to make sense that she would be sinless.
There are several books out there on Mary. I haven’t read Scott Hahn’s, but his book about the Mass was pretty clear and I imagine his Mary book would be too.
Well, Catholics don’t believe in “Scripture Alone” or “The Private Interpretation of Scripture”. That is, we believe in Scripture and Tradition and believe that the task of interpreting Scripture and Tradition belongs to the Church alone.
So for Catholics, the fact that this teaching is a Dogma of the Faith is all that’s needed.
Regardless, however, a case might be able to be made from the Bible alone. Specifically because Mary is called “Full of Grace”, which taken to it’s logical conclusion implies sinlessness.
But the most basic reason to believe this is because Jesus Christ got his human nature from Mary, and Jesus Christ did not get a sinful human nature. Jesus was able to do something no human person could do, choose his own mother. And he chose a holy place for his dwelling. It would not be possible for the all holy Son of God to dwell in a women that was under the captivity of Sin. :shrug:
Adam and Eve were perfect before the Fall. You have to read the Gospel of Luke the First Chapter Luke describes what she is, not who she is, but what she is. Remember Luke is a Gentile author and in order for Gentiles to understand Mary, he has to use almost identical wording to what he is comparing her to, The Ark of the Covenant.
When the ark was completed, the glory cloud of the Lord (the Shekinah Glory) covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle (Ex. 40:34-35; Num. 9:18, 22). The verb for “to cover” or “to overshadow” and the metaphor of a cloud are used in the Bible to represent the presence and glory of God. The Catechism explains:
In the theophanies of the Old Testament, the cloud, now obscure, now luminous, reveals
It’s easy to miss the parallel between the Holy Spirit overshadowing the ark and the Holy Spirit overshadowing Mary, between the Ark of the Old Covenant as the dwelling place of God and Mary as the new dwelling place of God.
God was very specific about every exact detail of the ark (Ex. 25-30). It was a place where God himself would dwell (Ex. 25:8). God wanted his words — inscribed on stone — housed in a perfect container covered with pure gold within and without. How much more would he want his Word — Jesus — to have a perfect dwelling place! If the only begotten Son were to take up residence in the womb of a human girl, would he not make her flawless?
The Virgin Mary is the living shrine of the Word of God, the Ark of the New and Eternal Covenant. In fact, St. Luke’s account of the annunciation of the angel to Mary nicely incorporates the images of the tent of meeting with God in Sinai and of the temple of Zion. Just as the cloud covered the people of God marching in the desert (cf. Num. 10:34; Deut. 33:12; Ps. 91:4) and just as the same cloud, as a sign of the divine mystery present in the midst of Israel, hovered over the Ark of the Covenant (cf. Ex. 40:35), so now the shadow of the Most High envelopes and penetrates the tabernacle of the New Covenant that is the womb of Mary (cf. Luke 1:35) (Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People, The Shrine: Memory, Presence and Prophecy of the Living God).
Luke weaves additional parallels into the story of Mary —
David went out to retrieve the ark (1 Sam 6:1-2). After a man named Uzzah was struck dead when he touched the ark, David was afraid and said, “How can the ark of the Lord come to me?” He left the ark in the hill country of Judea for three months. David danced and leapt in front of the ark and everyone shouted for joy. The house of Obededom, which had housed the ark, was blessed, and then David took the ark to Jerusalem (2 Sam. 6:9-14).
Compare David and the ark to Luke’s account of the Visitation:
In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a city of Judah, and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and she exclaimed with a loud cry, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why is this granted me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For behold, when the voice of your greeting came to my ears, the babe in my womb leaped for joy. And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord” (Luke 1:39-45).
Here are the parallels:
Mary arose and went to the hill country of Judea. Ein Kerem (where Elizabeth lived) and Abu Ghosh (where the ark resided) are only a short walk apart. Mary and the ark were both on a journey to the same hill country of Judea.
When David saw the ark he rejoiced and said, “How can the ark of the Lord come to me?” Elizabeth uses almost the same words: “Why is this granted me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?” Luke is telling us something — drawing our minds back to the Old Testament, showing us a parallel.
When David approached the ark he shouted out and danced and leapt in front of the ark. He was wearing an ephod, the clothing of a priest. When Mary, the Ark of the New Covenant, approached Elizabeth, John the Baptist leapt in his mother’s womb — and John was from the priestly line of Aaron. Both leapt and danced in the presence of the ark. The Ark of the Old Covenant remained in the house of Obed-edom for three months, and Mary remained in the house of Elizabeth for three months. The place that housed the ark for three months was blessed, and in the short paragraph in Luke, Elizabeth uses the word blessed three times. Her home was certainly blessed by the presence of the ark and the Lord within.
When the Old Testament ark arrived — as when Mary arrived — they were both greeted with shouts of joy. The word for the cry of Elizabeth’s greeting is a rare Greek word used in connection with Old Testament liturgical ceremonies that were centered around the ark and worship. This word would flip on the light switch for any knowledgeable Jew.
The ark returns to its home and ends up in Jerusalem, where God’s presence and glory is revealed in the temple (2 Sam. 6:12; 1 Kgs. 8:9-11). Mary returns home and eventually ends up in Jerusalem, where she presents God incarnate in the temple (Luke 1:56; 2:21-22).
It seems clear that Luke has used typology to reveal something about the place of Mary in salvation history. In the Ark of the Old Covenant, God came to his people with a spiritual presence, but in Mary, the Ark of the New Covenant, God comes to dwell with his people not only spiritually but physically, in the womb of a specially prepared Jewish girl.
Jesus is perfect because he is God. And he is the ultimate perfection of man because he became man. Jesus isn’t a creation of God. Jesus is God who became man while still remaining God. But the Blessed Virgin Mary is God’s perfect creation. One is the perfect creator while the other is the perfect creation.
Jesus was begotten not made meaning He has existed for all time with the Father and the Holy Spirit He became incarnate or took on human flesh 2000 years ago. It’s pretty deep theology. Mary is a creature who was given a special grace but she still needed a savior. The best analogy I can think of and analogies are limited, is if there is a big hole that everyone keeps falling in we need someone to get us out, Mary was just stopped before falling in the hole but she needed someone to prevent her from falling in the hole.
I would think that the Father and the HS are also perfect persons. The OP did not say where he found that Jesus was the “only perfect person”
He is in RCIA and is probably just trying to learn more about the faith. I went through RCIA as a catechumen about 20 years ago, and over the years I’ve learned a lot about the Catholic faith compared to what I knew then. And there are still new things I’m learning.
Also…in Luke…we read about two other persons:
From Luke 1:
5 In the time of Herod king of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly division of Abijah; his wife Elizabeth was also a descendant of Aaron. 6 Both of them were righteous in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly.
Holy Virgin didn’t die, she was assumed into heavens…