Flip-flop thread - Marian Doctrine


#1

Hey everyone, this is the sequel to the “Opposite Thread” I ran last week. For anyone who didn’t catch that train, this is an exercise to give new members a chance to practice apologetics and to let older members develop their skills by playing antagonist. Here are (new and improved) the rules:

  1. It doesn’t matter if you are a Protestant or Catholic (or other), all SENIOR members will play the antagonist and argue against Catholic doctrine.

  2. All JUNIOR and REGULAR members will argue the Catholic position - even if you disagree with the Catholic position!

  3. Maintain a level of respect. If you are required to argue a position contrary to what you actually believe, please do so with dignity. If you object to arguing a position you consider heresy, then don’t play.

For this post, I wanted to get into something multi-faceted. I will start out by writing a strictly Catholic statement in the next post. That prompt will be somewhat focused, but this thread (as so many in these forums seem to do), may expand to touch on all aspects of Marian doctrine. I hope that new members will use this as a chance to practice their apologetic skills against some of the really skilled senior members on board. Now, on to the first post.


#2

Catholic position:

As Christians, we have such a great gift in the ever-virgin Mary, who, as our mother through Christ, intercedes on our behalf and offers her prayers for our most heart-felt intentions.


#3

[quote=awfulthings9]Catholic position:

As Christians, we have such a great gift in the ever-virgin Mary, who, as our mother through Christ, intercedes on our behalf and offers her prayers for our most heart-felt intentions.
[/quote]

And yet eminently superfluous. Praying to Mary is pointless, if she can even hear us. Why do so when you can pray to Christ, the sole mediator of all people? Surely, even if we could pray to Mary, it would be settling for less when we can pray directly to God.


#4

[quote=RobNY]And yet eminently superfluous. Praying to Mary is pointless, if she can even hear us. Why do so when you can pray to Christ, the sole mediator of all people? Surely, even if we could pray to Mary, it would be settling for less when we can pray directly to God.
[/quote]

Rob, this isn’t an either-or situation. The epistle of James tells us that the prayers of a righteous man availeth much. Who is more rightous than Mary? Putting that aside, sure you would have no problem asking a friend or relative to pray for you. If I were to object and ask, “Why are you asking Frank to pray for you when you can go straight to God?” you would answer, "This way Frank and I are both praying on my behalf. So it goes with Mary. We don’t pray to her instead of God - we ask her to pray for us (as you did with Frank) so that, for instance, Mary and I are praying together “straight to God” after that point. And, as to whether or not she can hear us, one must wonder what the saints in Rev. 5:8 and 8:3 are doing by offering up the “prayers of the holy ones” if they can’t hear those prayers to begin with.


#5

[quote=awfulthings9]Rob, this isn’t an either-or situation. The epistle of James tells us that the prayers of a righteous man availeth much.
[/quote]

Who is more righteous than Christ, who wiped away all of my sins on the cross? If I must pray to the most righteous, I pray to Christ.

Who is more rightous than Mary?

Jesus, perhaps?

Putting that aside, sure you would have no problem asking a friend or relative to pray for you.

I would ask them to pray to God for me, if I had to. But why would I? I don’t need their prayers, I have the blessed assurance of God’s salvation. :wink: I pray to God so that I can continue the wonderful personal relationship with my Lord and Savior, Jesus, who saved me, because I love Him deeply and unabashedly. Wouldn’t you want to talk with the greatest Love of your life so personally and honestly? Why would you want or need to do that to the saints in heaven (all Christians are “saints,” you know, not just those in heaven) who you don’t even know?!

If I were to object and ask, “Why are you asking Frank to pray for you when you can go straight to God?” you would answer, "This way Frank and I are both praying on my behalf. So it goes with Mary. We don’t pray to her instead of God - we ask her to pray for us (as you did with Frank) so that, for instance, Mary and I are praying together “straight to God” after that point.

It is indisputable that in my private prayer I would be better to focus on praying to God, whose righteouss far exceeds that of any created being, no matter how holy. Are you seriously advocating that I spend time praying to a created being when I could spend the same time praying to my Lord, God and Savior?

And, as to whether or not she can hear us, one must wonder what the saints in Rev. 5:8 and 8:3 are doing by offering up the “prayers of the holy ones” if they can’t hear those prayers to begin with.

It is quite simple, they are offering the prayers of the other saints in heaven. Please stop taking such alarming freedom with God’s Word and interpret it plainly.


#6

[quote=awfulthings9]Rob, this isn’t an either-or situation. The epistle of James tells us that the prayers of a righteous man availeth much. Who is more rightous than Mary? Putting that aside, sure you would have no problem asking a friend or relative to pray for you. If I were to object and ask, “Why are you asking Frank to pray for you when you can go straight to God?” you would answer, "This way Frank and I are both praying on my behalf. So it goes with Mary. We don’t pray to her instead of God - we ask her to pray for us (as you did with Frank) so that, for instance, Mary and I are praying together “straight to God” after that point. And, as to whether or not she can hear us, one must wonder what the saints in Rev. 5:8 and 8:3 are doing by offering up the “prayers of the holy ones” if they can’t hear those prayers to begin with.
[/quote]

Mary is Dead! plain and simple, and by talking to her, you condraict scripture because it says not to talk to the dead.

As for not praying to her instead of God, the way I look at it, I’m praying TO HER, so how can I be praying to God at the same time?..

About your quote from Revelation, the “saints” are us here on earth, and those are OUR prayers…:wink:


#7

[quote=RobNY]And yet eminently superfluous.

[/quote]

No more superfluous than investing your money in the bank.

It is pointless only to those who don’t have the faith to see the point. The point is to magnify the Lord in Mary.

This is a matter of dogma and doctrine. You must understand that we believe Mary was taken to heaven body and soul and has been crowned Queen of Heaven. We likewise believe she is our Mother and has been given to hear all of her children.

Why pray to Christ when He taught us to pray to the Father?

Matt 6:9 Thus therefore shall you pray: Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our supersubstantial bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we also forgive our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation. But deliver us from evil. Amen.

John 16:23 And in that day you shall not ask me any thing. Amen, amen I say to you: if you ask the Father any thing in my name, he will give it you.

Your argument does not hold.

Several points to make here.

  1. You assume one can only pay attention to either God or Mary.

a. Does one ignore the sun when looking at the moon? Is it even possible?
b. She is a real but secondary cause, while God is the primary cause. Praying to Mary is not mutually exclusive to praying to God. Jesus Himself said if you receive someone in His name, then you receive Him.
c. We can pray to someone besides God in Jesus’ name:
[indent]
1 Thessalonians 4:1 For the rest therefore, brethren, we pray and beseech you in the Lord Jesus, that as you have received from us, how you ought to walk, and to please God, so also you would walk, that you may abound the more.

Conclusion 1: God is in His mystical body, and it is therefore appropriate to pray to anyone in the “communion of saints”.
[/indent]

  1. More hidden is the implication that you wish only to pray in your own name (“we can pray directly to God”).

a. While that is true, you are wrong in concluding we are settling for less by praying to Mary! (Shown shortly)
b. As quoted in John 16:23 above, you can pray in another’s name.
c. By praying in Jesus’ name to the Father, our request is more certain to be fulfilled.

Conclusion 2: This establishes the principle that one does well to pray on the merits of another, in their name, to avoid settling for less.

  1. Implicit in your assertion is that you have all faith.

a. When we ask something of Jesus in our own name, we must have faith. He expects faith of us.
b. Our faith may be weak. We may need the help of someone else’s faith to obtain something if we are lacking.
[indent]
Mark 9:22 And Jesus saith to him: If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth. 23 And immediately the father of the boy crying out, with tears said: I do believe, Lord: help my unbelief.

c. Those with faith are called upon to intercede for others.

1 Timothy 2:1 I desire therefore, first of all, that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all men:

d. This is another point of doctrine, that the faithful accumulate merits by doing the works of God in the measure of grace they have received.

“works of supererogation” are those which are performed beyond what is required by God, thus forming a reserve store of works of merit which can be drawn upon for the dispensation of those whose works fall short of the standard required.

Conclusion 3: We ought to pray to Mary, whose faith exceeded ours, beseeching her in Jesus’ name to help us by her merits since we ourselves have not sufficient faith of ourselves to obtain from Jesus what we may need.
[/indent]

Summary
Thus, I have shown that praying to Mary is more effective than praying to God directly in my own name. We are asking for the grace of God from Mary. God is not excluded. We include Mary and her will to love God and serve her neighbor, and we give glory to Mary and even more glory to God because Mary multiplies it. So to pray to God in a manner excluding Mary or the saints is to deny glory to God.

hurst


#8

erm… is it just me… or is this thread getting a little heated already.


#9

[quote=RobNY]And yet eminently superfluous. Praying to Mary is pointless, if she can even hear us. Why do so when you can pray to Christ, the sole mediator of all people? Surely, even if we could pray to Mary, it would be settling for less when we can pray directly to God.
[/quote]

So are we to assume that you have never asked a friend or a member of your Church pray for you?

If you have who would you rather have pray for you-the guy next door or the Mother of Jesus?


#10

[quote=Magicsilence]erm… is it just me… or is this thread getting a little heated already.
[/quote]

No, we’re all putting this on. :slight_smile:

No more superfluous than investing your money in the bank.

I can’t really follow the logical line here. I’m having trouble seeing how this is an applicable analogy.

Praying to Mary is superfluous because you could spend the same time praying to Chirst. I am investing wisely, investing my time and heart in Christ in that great bank, Christ’s redemptive suffering, which will never default on you. I can’t invest the same piece of time simultaneously at two banks, only one at a time. Given the choice, I serve God. Perhaps you are a better multitasker than I am, and you can simultaneously pray to Mary and to God and once?

It is pointless only to those who don’t have the faith to see the point.

I do believe that whether or not praying to Mary has a point or not is the issue in question, a finding of fact. I don’t see why anyone would be granted faith to see such a spurious point.

The point is to magnify the Lord in Mary.

Your point is. Whether or not it achieves that point is an entirely different question.

This is a matter of dogma and doctrine.

Your dogma and doctrine? Not mine.

You must understand that we believe Mary was taken to heaven body and soul and has been crowned Queen of Heaven. We likewise believe she is our Mother and has been given to hear all of her children.

There are people who also believe that leprechauns zealously guard pots of gold at the end of the rainbow. Can you support this belief from the Bible?

Why pray to Christ when He taught us to pray to the Father?

Christ taught us to pray to His Father, but not to the exclusion of Himself or His Spirit. Perhaps your point would be valid if Christ instructed us to pray to His Father in Heaven, and only His Father in Heaven. That is not true. We are still required to worship God, unless you also reject the first commandment? And also reject Jesus’ great Law of Love-- to love God with your whole mind, soul and body? It is from both of these that we know we are to worship God, and I worship him most fully when I meet with him in intimate prayer. I worship Christ by praying to him. Is this wrong?

Being an orthodox Christian, you do realize that in praying to the Father, you pray to His Divine Nature which all three persons of the Trinity share?

Your argument does not hold.

Please check above. It does. Arguing that Christ excluded the possibility of us praying to himself by asking us to pray to the Father is shoddy logic. And my logic wasn’t praying merely to Chirst, but merely to God. I don’t appreciate the strawman that I supposedly believe in only praying to Christ. I emphasize Christ because it is by Christ’s intercession that the Father pardons us. It is not by our intercession to the Father that the Father pardons us. It doesn’t follow that we shouldn’t also pray to the Father, for the Father and Christ are one. I emphasize Christ’s intercession as a remedy and counterweight to the false emphasis of Mary.

  1. You assume one can only pay attention to either God or Mary.

At any given instant in time, this is true. You can only devote that particular instant to God or Mary, and I choose to do so to Mary. When I die, I hope the prayer on my lips will be “Jesus,” not “Hail Mary.”

a. Does one ignore the sun when looking at the moon? Is it even possible?

An invalid example. You can look at thousands of things at once, but you can only pray to one thing at once. At any moment by mind can be concentrating on the intercession of Christ or of Mary. Can you guess who I choose?

b. She is a real but secondary cause, while God is the primary cause. Praying to Mary is not mutually exclusive to praying to God. Jesus Himself said if you receive someone in His name, then you receive Him.

Again, I must stress the plain meaning of Scripture. Receive, not pray. In any case, receiving is bringing in, praying is sending out, they are polar opposites.

1 Thessalonians 4:1 For the rest therefore, brethren, we pray and beseech you in the Lord Jesus, that as you have received from us, how you ought to walk, and to please God, so also you would walk, that you may abound the more.


#11

Conclusion 1: God is in His mystical body, and it is therefore appropriate to pray to anyone in the “communion of saints”.

Conclusion 1: God is in His mystical body, and it is therefore appropriate to worship anyone in the “communion of saints.”

Wait a second… that logic doesn’t quite work, does it? :wink:

It seems that you have let the archaic language addle your brains. Why not pay attention to some modern renderings of the same verse which make the syntax clear:
The NAB:

1 Finally, brothers, we earnestly ask and exhort you in the Lord Jesus that, as you received from us how you should conduct yourselves to please God–and as you are conducting yourselves–you do so even more.

The NIV:

1Finally, brothers, we instructed you how to live in order to please God, as in fact you are living. Now we ask you and urge you in the Lord Jesus to do this more and more.

The NKJV:

1Furthermore then, we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received from us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more

The RSV:

1: Finally, brethren, we beseech and exhort you in the Lord Jesus, that as you learned from us how you ought to live and to please God, just as you are doing, you do so more and more.

If only the DRV uses this, what can I say? The context clearly shows that they do not mean “pray” as you allege it does in regards to praying to Mary and having her grant us requests. It means quite plainly that the apostle is exhorting them to stay in Christ’s light. Perhaps the analogy would be valid further if they were praying to these brethren and expecting them to relay messages to God on their behalf?

b. As quoted in John 16:23 above, you can pray in another’s name.

And that ‘other’ is God. What is your point? Refer to my point about Christ’s injunction to pray to the Father not being exclusive. And about your deceptive quoting… if you take verse 23 to mean that we are not to pray to Christ, verse 22 says:

22 Therefore you now have sorrow; but I will see you again and your heart will rejoice, and your joy no one will take from you.

And it is thus that Christ says:

23 “And in that day you will ask Me nothing. Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you.

And surely, when “that day” comes that our resurrection has come and so has Christ’s second coming, what more will we have to ask him? Nothing. However in the interim…

verse 24 goes on to say:

24 Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.

Whatever we ask in His (Jesus’!) name we will receive! This seems to encourage us to pray to Christ.

  1. Implicit in your assertion is that you have all faith.

Who are you to judge my conscience, my soul, my innermost being?

a. When we ask something of Jesus in our own name, we must have faith. He expects faith of us.
b. Our faith may be weak. We may need the help of someone else’s faith to obtain something if we are lacking

Self-defeating. If our human faith may be weak, so too may the human faith of our frail friends be! He expects faith from us, and through the outpouring of His Spirit he provides! How joyous to be living in Christ!

Mark 9:22 And Jesus saith to him: If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth. 23 And immediately the father of the boy crying out, with tears said: I do believe, Lord: help my unbelief.

The father’s belief brought the healing of the boy, not his faith.

1 Timothy 2:1 I desire therefore, first of all, that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all men:

It is not wrong to pray for others to God. It is wrong to waste foolish time praying to others to pray to God. Timothy makes this quite clear.

d. This is another point of doctrine, that the faithful accumulate merits by doing the works of God in the measure of grace they have received.

“works of supererogation” are those which are performed beyond what is required by God, thus forming a reserve store of works of merit which can be drawn upon for the dispensation of those whose works fall short of the standard required.

Certainly not Protestant docrtine.

Conclusion 3: We ought to pray to Mary, whose faith exceeded ours, beseeching her in Jesus’ name to help us by her merits since we ourselves have not sufficient faith of ourselves to obtain from Jesus what we may need.

The conclusion might follow if all of your principles and assumptions were correct. They aren’t.

I don’t have the time to address the rest, but hopefully I’ll come back! Yours in Christ! (EDIT: Got it all in!)


#12

Out of character: Guys, I’m starting to scare myself, I’m not supposed to be doing this well! :smiley: Oh well, I think I’m off to pray a rosary, perhaps later.


#13

Great thread idea!

I would like to play the devils advocate and have someone answer this question:

How can Mary be our intercessor or mediator when 1 Tim 2:5 says there is “One mediator between God and man?”


#14

[quote=Bishopite]Great thread idea!

I would like to play the devils advocate and have someone answer this question:

How can Mary be our intercessor or mediator when 1 Tim 2:5 says there is “One mediator between God and man?”
[/quote]

There is one mediator between God and man in effecting our salvation, but we use “mediators” all the time in our spiritual lives for other matters. Even though God heals us, Protestants and Catholics still go to doctors. Even though God marries us, Protestants and Catholics still go to a preacher or priest. God gives us faith, yet Protestants and Catholics still mediate as missionaries to the world. Are these violations of this verse? Of course not, nor would it be to have you, my friend, mediate for me with your prayers. By extension, it would not be so to ask Mary to pray for me, either. One mediator for salvation, but several tools for his grace.


#15

This whole paragraph demonstrates that you have separated Mary from Christ and from God in such a manner that you also set yourself up against Mary instead of working with her.

As usual when someone cuts things apart, they end up with less. You are left to offer your prayers to Christ on your own. While it is true that Christ is our Saviour, and the source of all treasures of grace from God,it does not follow that praying to Christ directly by yourself is the most profitable endeavor.

Somehow, you missed the simple logic of magnification. You also missed the law of humility.

  1. You miss the logic of magnification
    Mary is not a competing bank, but is at the service of Christ’s bank. She lives, yet not she, but Christ in her (Galatians 2:20 And I live, now not I; but Christ liveth in me…). If you give your time and heart to Christ, you will get as much as your own efforts might avail. But if you give them to Mary (who lives in Christ), she takes them and lovingly invests them with greater devotion to Christ and obtains the most possible on our behalf. (Luke 1:46 And Mary said: My soul doth magnify the Lord.) Not only in obtaining for us, but in giving pleasure to God in our behalf.

It is like the difference between going to a manual car wash vs an automatic car wash. One requires strenuous effort to many details, but the other just requires some genuine tokens of love, and the details are taken care of for you.

Obtaining the perfection that pleases Jesus is much harder than humbly offering someone else’s perfection and being thereby helped by the other. Praying to Mary and the Saints makes access to Jesus easier, and the time we invest in them makes our efforts much more fruitful in reaching Jesus, benefitting by His grace, and in pleasing Him.

  1. You miss the law of humility
    Though you claim it is best to go to Christ directly because He is superior, perhaps you are actually wanting to put yourself closer to the head of the banquet table to make yourself appear greater. (Luke 14:8-11) You don’t realize that in lowering yourself, you would be more successful in reaching God. (Eccles 35:21 The prayer of him that humbleth himself, shall pierce the clouds: and till it come nigh he will not be comforted: and he will not depart till the most High behold.) Did you forget the Jesus praised the faith of the Centurion who humbly sent others to Jesus? (Luke 7:6 … the centurion sent his friends to him, saying: Lord, trouble not thyself; for I am not worthy that thou shouldest enter under my roof. 7 For which cause neither did I think myself worthy to come to thee…)

So by humbling ourselves, we attract God to us, who lifts up the humble.

Prayer consists of more than petition for needs. The “divided” attention has to do with the fact that we need to balance two activities: giving and receiving. Your single attention focuses only on the activity of receiving (via “giving” a request). You are not considering what love or honor you are giving to Christ in your prayer. This is an important kind of “multitasking” called balancing, and I am sure it is not beyond you. For Christ is in Mary, and with her you can balance between pleasing Him with her, and obtaining from Him through her and thereby pleasing her also. It simply multiplies the joy! Let others in the body of Christ - especially in heaven - enjoy God with us!

hurst


#16

I personally don’t think we are limited to praying only to the Father, but since you limit yourself to praying to Christ, what is the basis of that? And since you require a Biblical basis for everything, where in the Bible did Jesus ever say to pray to Jesus?

Look up in your concordance and let me know what you find. I can only find that He taught us to pray to Our Father, or the Lord of the Harvest:

Matt 6:6 … pray to thy Father in secret

Matt 6:9 Thus therefore shall you pray: Our Father who art in heaven…

Matt 9:38 Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest …

Mark 11:25 And when you shall stand to pray, forgive, if you have aught against any man; that your Father also, who is in heaven, may forgive you your sins.

Luke 10:2 … Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he send labourers into his harvest.

Luke 11:2 And he said to them: When you pray, say: Father, hallowed be thy name.

So, biblically speaking, you would only be allowed to “pray” to the Father - preferably in Jesus’ Name.

Here you equate prayer to worship. This is where you are wrong. We can “pray” to anyone who has the power to answer our request, for it means to ask in a pleading manner (as you show later).

Pray : \Pray, v. t. 1. To address earnest request to; to supplicate; to entreat; to implore; to beseech.

Clearly, you do not know what true worship is. And you contradict yourself on what prayer is. Apparently, to beseech someone is to worship them, according to your logic.

If you have no problem balancing your attention on three Persons, then how is it you claim to have a problem multitasking during prayer?

Also, here you say that in praying to the Father, we pray to the Divine Nature, and thus also to the Son Who shares this Nature, which by extension is to Christ. Do you not see how you reversed your notion of Christ as mediator, simply to keep your focus on Christ alone?

Now if Christ is to be the only one we pray to (as you assert), how is it that Christ directs us to pray to the Father, and calls us sons of God? (John 10:32-36, Acts 17:28-29) And if we are to pray to the Father, how do we multitask the need to go through the Christ?

You only show your lack of understanding of what prayer really is. In fact, all prayer goes to the Father, for even Christ submitted to and prayed to the Father. Yet praying to Christ does not detract from that, nor does praying to any other person oriented to the Father through Christ. It is rather like a magnet holding paper clips, and the paper clips on the magnet can themselves act as a magnet to other paper clips still on the desk.

Now you are defending your focus on Christ by saying you meant God?! And then justifying the emphasis on Christ by noting His intercession?!

If focusing on Christ does not detract from the Father since they share the divine nature, then how can you claim that focusing on Mary detracts from Christ since they share human flesh - for Christ’s flesh is all from Mary? And what is wrong then with emphasizing Mary, since it is by her intercession with Christ that we obtain so much?

Without Mary’s cooperation with God, we would have no Savior. Even God Himself is grateful to Mary.

hurst


#17

Your mindset is inconsistent. It is not a choice between God or Mary. It is a choice between the earthly or the heavenly. Mary is with God in the heavenly realm. Your argument to prefer one name over the other is not based on humility, is it? It seems rather based on making yourself look better for picking the bigger name. But a praiseworthy faith would be one like the Centurion (Matt 8:8 Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof…). He even sent other people to ask Jesus for him (Luke 7:6 … the centurion sent his friends to him, saying: Lord, trouble not thyself; for I am not worthy that thou shouldest enter under my roof. 7 For which cause neither did I think myself worthy to come to thee…). This pleased Jesus. But at another time Jesus had to correct some Pharisees who were insisting that they get the best place next to Him! (Luke 14:7 And he spoke a parable also to them that were invited, marking how they chose the first seats at the table…)

I am not saying Jesus is less, but I am saying our motives for approaching Jesus must be taken into consideration. Otherwise, we might be like those who called “Lord, Lord” and yet were not known by Jesus (Matt 7:21-23).

But at nighttime there is no sun to see except by looking at the moon.

Also, you say that to look is not to pray. And yet, all that was required for the Israelites in the desert was to look to be healed in the following case:

Numbers 21:7 Upon which they came to Moses, and said: We have sinned, because we have spoken against the Lord and thee: pray that he may take away these serpents from us. And Moses prayed for the people. 8 And the Lord said to him: Make a brazen serpent, and set it up for a sign: whosoever being struck shall look on it, shall live. 9 Moses therefore made a brazen serpent, and set it up for a sign: which when they that were bitten looked upon, they were healed.

What do you call something like that?

Nevertheless, the point is that we can not call out to God without directing our attention to Him or to what He has made. We praise Him by what we see He has made. We can praise the sun at night for the plants it caused to grow, or we can praise it for the light we see in the moon.

Praying to Mary to bring God to us, or praising God as reflected in Mary, or thanking God for Mary, or thanking Mary for loving God - these are all ways to pray, praise, and offer thanks.

As I said, you make an error in judgment here. How much could you accomplish by yourself? And yet how much more could you handle through Mary? How pleasing could you be to Christ by yourself? But how much more pleasing could you be through Mary?

I choose to be more like the Centurion, who utilizes the intercession of others to move Jesus. The only modification is that I rely heavily on Mary, who I know is most pleasing to Jesus.

Such a smokescreen does not hide the fact that by not receiving Mary, you are despising Christ.

My point was that we should look to the moon first for easier access to the sun while we are in the night of sin. The sun is out of our reach, but the moon is on our side, and it is fitting to pray to this moon to draw near to us and bring the sun to us in our need. And in receiving the moon, you receive the sun, so which was more profitable at this time?

And again, prayer is not a single mode activity. Just as we might be moved to give thanks on account of receiving a wonderful gift, so we are drawn to praise and thank God because of His creation, especially His angels and saints. And yet all their glory comes from Christ.

To pray “sending out”, you must first receive. And likewise, addressing yourself to creation is to show your love for God in His creatures, confident that you give glory to God by publishing His praise and calling on others to do likewise.

hurst


#18

[quote=RobNY]Conclusion 1: God is in His mystical body, and it is therefore appropriate to worship anyone in the “communion of saints.”

Wait a second… that logic doesn’t quite work, does it? :wink:

[/quote]

Actually, it does. But the term “worship”, like “pray”, does not apply exclusively to God. To worship is to recognize the worth or worthiness of, and anyone incorporated into Christ can only do so if Jesus considers them worthy of Himself. So in that sense, God also “worships” His own members.

Wisdom 3:5 Afflicted in few things, in many they shall be well rewarded: because God hath tried them, and found them worthy of himself.

Luke 20:35 But they that shall be accounted worthy of that world, and of the resurrection from the dead, shall neither be married, nor take wives.

Luke 21:36 Watch ye, therefore, praying at all times, that you may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that are to come, and to stand before the Son of man.

1 Timothy 5:17 Let the priests that rule well, be esteemed worthy of double honour: especially they who labour in the word and doctrine:

1 Timothy 6:1 Whosoever are servants under the yoke, let them count their masters worthy of all honour; lest the name of the Lord and his doctrine be blasphemed.

Apocalypse 3:4 But thou hast a few names in Sardis, which have not defiled their garments: and they shall walk with me in white, because they are worthy.

He likewise “prays” to other persons. But how many of us listen to His pleas?

Psalms 68:21 In thy sight are all they that afflict me; my heart hath expected reproach and misery. And I looked for one that would grieve together with me, but there was none: and for one that would comfort me, and I found none.

Ecclesiasticus 51:10 They compassed me on every side, and there was no one that would help me. I looked for the succour of men, and there was none.

Isaias 63:5 I looked about, and there was none to help: I sought, and there was none to give aid: and my own arm hath saved for me, and my indignation itself hath helped me.

Though you may point out that the exact words “I worship you” or “I pray to you” are not used, nevertheless, the action is consistent with the milder sense of those words. God has an incommunicable name, and it should not be given to a creature. But praying or holding worthy can be done to creatures without mistaking them for God.

Your modern renderings actually expose the contradiction in your earlier assertion that to pray is to worship. Right here in front of your eyes you can see that “pray” was a general term of earnest supplication. Nowadays it is mainly associated to such pleading with God. But not totally. It can mean to any higher power or authority. For example, you will find it in various court petitions in our legal system.

Christianity did not start in the past century. For you to rely on “modern” translations and ignore centuries of practice weakens your reasoning. As I mentioned earlier, the Centurion was praised for sending others to Christ in place of coming by himself since he did so in faith.

My point is the general principle. That “other” can be any person. Jesus showed this here:

Matthew 10:41 He that receiveth a prophet in the name of a prophet, shall receive the reward of a prophet: and he that receiveth a just man in the name of a just man, shall receive the reward of a just man. 42 And whosoever shall give to drink to one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, amen I say to you, he shall not lose his reward.

Again, the Centurion’s friends pleaded with Jesus in his name.

hurst


#19

Interesting perspective.

Rather, it encourages us to pray to the Father in Jesus’ Name. For the next two verses are:

John 16:26 In that day you shall ask in my name; and I say not to you, that I will ask the Father for you: 27 For the Father himself loveth you, because you have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God.

So if He is not going to ask for us, then we are not praying to Christ, but directly to the Father, asking on behalf of Jesus (in His Name). For we are also sons of God in Jesus, doing the Will of God.

I refer to our divine faith. Also, we only ask those friends who we deem to have faith.

Provides what? Faith?

And is the joy automatic? Are all Christians so joyous? Also, why then did Christ have to pray that Peter’s faith not fail? We will all be tested.

Judith 8:22 They must remember how our father Abraham was tempted, and being proved by many tribulations, was made the friend of God. 23 So Isaac, so Jacob, so Moses, and all that have pleased God, passed through many tribulations, remaining faithful.

Let me mark your words: belief is different from faith. Hmm. Could you elaborate on that?

Not so. How do you define “intercession”? How do you reconcile this with your belief that there is only one mediator/intercessor with God?

Again, this is not the conclusion Jesus made in regard to the Centurion.

hurst


#20

Rob—>http://www.clicksmilies.com/s0105/sport/sport-smiley-026.gif<—hurst


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