martin luther and mama mary

martin luther believed and even had a devotion the the blessed virgin… why do protestants refute to believe on the virgin mary ?

Well…I guess they don’t get why Catholics see her as the example of human obedience to the will of the Lord that we do. Growing up Lutheran, she was just another player in the history of our religion, not any more or less significant than anyone else involved with Jesus.

I’ve been Catholic all my life and I was probably 40 before I realized everyone didn’t view the Blessed Virgin the way we do. I think my first clue was when I noticed people calling her Mary instead of the Blessed Mother or something like that.

My impression is that they think of her as a vessel. Once Christ was born, she was just a regular person and her big job was done. Thinking she and Joseph had a regular marriage and more children later contributes to that I think. We look at her as the epitome of human obedience to God, the one who was always faithful and the role model for not just all mothers but all people.

They misunderstand our devotion to Christ’s mother as worship. We look at their lack of devotion as almost disdain. They believe they should only go right to the source, and while we also go directly to God, we can appreciate the intercession that those who are already with God can offer us.

It’s not that illogical if you think about it. Luther encourage people to read the Bible themselves and throw out any pre-existing traditions about what it meant and let it speak for itself. That principle has stuck, so modern protestants don’t care much what Luther thought about Mary, only what THEY see Scripture as saying about her.

They see the Scriptures as the ONLY source of authority and Mary’s larger role is visible, but not self evident in Scripture. It is even less clear to English speaking non-hebrews due to different cultures and language issues.

What do you mean “refute to believe on the Virgin Mary”? If you mean that (most) Protestants do not pay her a significant amount of attention, there may be a number of reasons, among them:

  1. Scripture, as a matter of fact, does not pay her a significant amount of attention. I’m speaking quantity here.
  2. (Most) Protestants do not practice invocation of saints or the Blessed Virgin, so her prominence in (most) protestant religious practice is reduced.
  3. Fear that she will be a distraction from Christ, as some believe has happened to Catholics.

Most Protestants do believe she was a vigin at the time of Christ’s birth, that she was a loyal follower and loving mother to her son throughout is and her life, that she showed that love and lyalty at the foot of the cross, and that this love and loyalty is an excellent example of the godly life that all Christian can follow.
There are some, such as myself, who believe the basic Marion doctrines, though not invocation.

Finally, Luther’s marian devotion can be over- and understated, as is sometimes done so by apologists trying to prove their side of the debate over Mary.

Jon

Please cite your source that this is what Luther said. The very first Section of the Lutheran Confessions is the three creeds, certainly part of Tradition. In his Small Catechism and Large Catechism, he spends significant time teaching on the Apostle’s Creed. Lutherans are quite free to hold Marian beliefs, as are others, even though there is not significant Biblical comment on the IC or the assumption.

Jon

EDIT: Many Protestants don’t care what Luther said, because they aren’t Lutheran.

I dont’ claim to be a Luther Scholar, nor did I intend to claim that my post was a quote. I apologize if that was unclear.

I make reference to the idea generally credited to Luther regarding “Sola Scriptura and Sola Fide” being the two defining differences between his teachings and those of the Catholic Church. I realize this is a simplification, but so is EVERYTHING on an internet post.

Luther may well have seen the Creeds favorably. But many of his descendents in the faith don’t. And affirming a Creed is not the same as assigning authority to it.

My methodist church clearly said to me that no one should pray to any one other than to God him self. And by the way, not all protestants still believe in what Martin Luther said… all denominations have different doctrine!

Well as for me I am not Lutheran. So it is not a matter of Luther said/did this, therefore it must be right.

Now for that matter I don’t think that Lutherans believe Luther to be incapable of being incorrect, but who knows, I can be wrong here.

but “Believe on the virgin mary???”

Well for starters, I can’t find any Scriptures where I am commanded to “believe on the virgin mary”. I know of one that says Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and Thou shalt be saved. And that works for me just fine (thank you Jesus). But where does “believe on the virgin mary” come from?:confused::confused::confused:

=manualman;5567397]I dont’ claim to be a Luther Scholar, nor did I intend to claim that my post was a quote. I apologize if that was unclear.

I make reference to the idea generally credited to Luther regarding “Sola Scriptura and Sola Fide” being the two defining differences between his teachings and those of the Catholic Church. I realize this is a simplification, but so is EVERYTHING on an internet post.

No apology needed. I was reacting to what I consider a mischaracterization of Luther (usually unitended), which comes from modern solo scriptura.

Luther may well have seen the Creeds favorably. But many of his descendents in the faith don’t.

I think you will find that virtually all his “decendents” in the faith - Lutherans - view the creeds favorably. Other reformers and their “decendents” may have other views.

And affirming a Creed is not the same as assigning authority to it

In and of the fact that they speak the truth of the Gospel, they are authoratative.

Jon

Lutherans still proclaim the creeds in their liturgies, and stand by what they say. They are indeed authoritative for Lutherans.

=NotTooSmart;5567920]Well as for me I am not Lutheran. So it is not a matter of Luther said/did this, therefore it must be right.

Thanks for saying this. Some folks are under the impression that all Protestant traditions “split off” from Luther somehow.

Now for that matter I don’t think that Lutherans believe Luther to be incapable of being incorrect, but who knows, I can be wrong here.

You are not wrong. We are quite aware that Luther was not a prophet, nor was he correct about everything. He certainly wasn’t infallible or without sin.

but "Believe on the virgin mary???"
Well for starters, I can’t find any Scriptures where I am commanded to “believe on the virgin mary”. I know of one that says Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and Thou shalt be saved. And that works for me just fine (thank you Jesus). But where does “believe on the virgin mary” come from?:confused::confused::confused:

I don’t believe it is the Op’s or any other Catholic’s intention to say that they believe on the Blessed Virgin Mary in the same way they believe on Christ as Savior. Veneration is quite different from adoration.

Not speaking about you, but there are many Protestants who unfairly characterize Catholics as worshipping Mary, either out of ignorance or , sadly, out of malice.
Catholics, OTOH, sometimes unfairly characterize Protestants’ reduced emphasis on the Blessed Virgin as somehow being disrespectful, also either out of ignorance or, sadly, malice.
We all need to listen to what the other says, and be more charitable.

Jon

Jon:

I have heard it said that Catholics worship Mary. I dunno know whether that is true or not.

I generally like to let people tell me what they believe instead of me telling them what they believe, and then accept it at face value. Of course with some groups that is a problem because by that rule I could end up believing that JW are Christian. But that is my natural inclination anyway.

I suppose in the end it is not up to me to make that call, since I don’t have the assignment of making judgements based on knowing somebody’s heart.

Let me just say that I am very uncomfortable with much of the Catholic Mary stuff and leave it at that.

But when I read stuff like this, well it makes me think maybe that the worst I have read just might be true.

But who knows, maybe the poster was having a bad day or a brain cramp or it just didn’t come out as he/she intended. That happens to me sometime too.:slight_smile:

=NotTooSmart;5569507]Jon:
I have heard it said that Catholics worship Mary. I dunno know whether that is true or not.

From my perspective as a Lutheran, listening to the Catholic posters here, I conclude they do nothing of the sort. And in fact, I admire their love of the Savior’s mother, and believe it helps lead them to Christ. It is a very old practice, shared by the east, and I sometimes think we would do well to at least reconsider with an open mind.

I generally like to let people tell me what they believe instead of me telling them what they believe, and then accept it at face value.

Well said. That is what I attempt to do, also.

Let me just say that I am very uncomfortable with much of the Catholic Mary stuff and leave it at that.

Many Protestants are.

Jon

Jon,

I was very uncomfortable with the thought of praying to Mary at first, but there is so much scripture that proves that we may ask the saints for their prayer and guidance. So praying to them is fantastic for those people who do not have others to pray for them…

I use my rosary to pray to Mary when ever I feel alone. My methodist ministers were not happy about this, but we need prayers, and since the saints cannot die or refuse to help us, why then shouldn’t we call unto them?

xxXx zundrah xXxx

My pastor would not be happy either, but I cannot take a critical stand against a practice that has such a long history in Christianity, and has been a source of comfort for millions, seemingly yourself included.

The issue, and this gets back to the OP’s question, then becomes the requirement to believe Marian doctrines, not the practice or belief itself. Luther held to Marian doctrines, but as this belief does not effect salvation, he questioned why the Christian should be bound to believe it?

Jon

Does not effect salvation!? Oh my, but praying that some one would be safe on a journey would make a diierence, wouldn’t it? I’m sure that you agree on that.

So then, believe that if I say to our Darling Advocate Mary, “Pray for me oh holy mother of God, that I may not be led into sin but lead me instead onto the path of redemtion and holiness” believe that there will be a difference because the prayers of saints are as good as human prayres, right? Do you follow?

The CC’s view regarding Mary is one of the main reasons for my rejection of the CC as the One True Church…and so the beliefs about Mary are of considerable significance to me. I take a much stronger position than does Jon NC, so I’ll build on his remarks…but be warned that I am expressing my view and that view may be offensive to the devotees of Mary.

Like JonNC I would ask what do you mean “refute to believe on the Virgin Mary”? If you mean that (most) Protestants do not pay her a significant amount of attention, then I have a number of reasons, which include:

  1. Both the NT and the earliest works known as the Apostolic Fathers do not expressly grant her any significance apart from her role as virgin in our Lord’s birth (and perhaps that of a concerned mother in his lifetime)…I find this early “silence” extremely unlikely if we are to believe the claim that she is second only to Christ in importance wrt our salvation

  2. The passages of Scripture that do not expressly mention Mary, but which the Catholics point to as teaching/implying/otherwise supporting a more significant role for Mary are unconvincing (at best) and again, I find it extremely unlikely that the only biblical support for a more significant role for Mary must be derived from “reading between the lines”.

  3. The silence and the need for “reading between the lines” described at (1) and (2) above are exactly what I would expect to see if the Marian doctrines are man-made innovations.
    Further, the gospels actually seem to downplay the significance of Mary on at least one, if not two, occasions.

  4. Regarding the matters of perpetual virginty, sinlessness and role as mediatrix the scriptures most certainly do not expressly claim such and on balance call into question such claims.

  5. Although Catholics insist that what their devotion does not amount to worship, the level of devotion one can often observe is hard to distinguish from worship and many people are fairly said to worship other “gods” where far less devotion is involved…As such, although not amounting to (a strong definition of) worship, the devotion we see given to Mary is excessive and (at best) a distraction from Christ.

Can I ask you, who is this post directed to?

P.S. Don’t worry, you are not offending me by saying that you believe that devotion to Mary is wrong. But unfortunately, I can’t speak for other catholics who could be offended. :frowning:

Praying to our Blessed Mother is one of the most powerful things there is. And she leads us so much closer to Jesus. Don’t see what’s wrong with it :shrug: and it’s not unbiblical at all; she still says “do as He tells you”, just as she did then… (she points us to Him)

the ECFs spoke very highly of Mary, they never talked about her as if she’s “only a vessel”…

davidmacd.com/catholic/mary_in_the_early_church.htm

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