I have NIV Holy Bible with me, and no where is the birth of the person who is the Mother of Jesus, mentioned.
We have the birth of Samson ( miracelous birth ) Birth of John the Baptist ( miracelous Birth) and Birth of Isaac ( Miracelous birth) all clearly mentioned, so why is Mother Mary’s birth not mentioned?
Yeah, and where is the account of Bob the Shepherd’s birth?
Seriously though, Mary’s birth is not a part of the story of our salvation per se. In fact, the only part of her birth (the Immaculate Conception) that does influence our salvation is mentioned in the Bible when Gabriels calls her “full of grace.” The only way to be full of grace is to be immaculate, without sin, the new ark to hold the Word.
It is in the prophecy of Isaiah 7:14. As well, the bible is incomplete. Luke 3:18, John 20:30, John 21:25, Acts 2:40 and 1 Corinthians 11:34 all tell us that the bible is incomplete. The bible was never intended to be complete, but only a supplement to the Apostolic Tradition and the Magisterium (teaching authority) of the Church. The bible was actually a late addition to the early Church.
Also, bear in mind that the NIV is a non-Catholic version of the bible. It is missing seven books of the Old Testament. It’s not a bad translation but, as a Catholic, you might try the Revised Standard Version - Second Catholic Edition (RSV-2CE) by Ignatius Press. It is quite highly regarded. Here is a thread which discusses the NIV:
Mary’s birth itself wasn’t miraculous, at least from a historical point of view. Unlike Samson, JB and Isaac, it’s not like her parents were barren for years, praying for a child and an angel appeared to announce her conception or anything. :shrug:
SHE was a special person indeed in that she was free from all sin. Enoch and Elijah were obviously incredibly special people to God as well, extraordinarily righteous in His sight - He assumed both of them bodily into heaven.
So was Noah, of all people on earth God chose to save only him and his family from the flood. None of their actual births are recorded, however.
That is really not a universal Apostolic understanding, it is more of a Latin Catholic one. So the understanding comes from some preconceived notions about grace, which are not necessarily shared by everyone in Apostolic churches.
The belief then, is a developed derivative, not a part of the revelation of Christ received through the Apostles.
I think ‘supplement’ must be an accidental choice of word.
The Bible is part and parcel of Apostolic Tradition, certainly not the only or exclusive source of the Traditional Faith but neither subordinated in any way. Since we cannot be there, with Jesus Christ in the flesh (as the Apostles were), I would say Holy Scripture has pride of place as the preeminent fount of our knowledge for the present day.
Samson was a deliverer. John the Baptist was a prophet. Isaac was the “human father” of Israel. All these people came long before the birth of Jesus. In my opinion, the reason why the birth of Mary wasn’t included in the Bible is that, the birth of Mary adds very little to the main story. In other words, the birth of Mary isn’t important as compared to the birth of Jesus. The Main story is the birth of Jesus and adding the birth of Mary to the story would just make things longer without changing the main story in any way.
Here is how it was explained to me.
There is a book called The Protoevangelium of Mary (I think that is the one) that tells of her parents, her birth etc. It is part of the tradition & was believed by many to be inspired. However, when it came to the Scriptures, it created a problem because the NT is about Jesus & his mission. Do you put her story at the beginning if the NT? Then that delays the reader from getting to the “meat” the Gospels of Jesus. It wouldnt fit if you put it later either. It was part of the story of Christ but her story was not the main story of the NT. So it was considered worthy of reading but could not be included in the canon. The traditional understanding we have of her parents (their names etc) & other things, were from this book. I actually have a collection of some extracannonical books called The Other Bible. Interesting book. The explanation & the book were given to me by my RCIA teacher, a Deacon. I am not sure how widely accepted his explanation is.
OK…but you understand, do you not, that if I were to mention this in any discussion…that the Scriptures are a part of Holy Tradition, and though equal to it certainly not subordinate (either one) I would get my head handed to me by Catholics who would be incensed at my daring to tell them what they ‘really’ think about the Bible.
So…before I do any such thing (and trust me, I’m not out to criticise anybody for this; I’m a Mormon, remember? We have the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price that we hold equal to the Bible…so the concept that something outside the Bible is equal in importance TO the Bible is not at all problematic; I would have absolutely no leg to stand on;) ), where can I go for VERY official Catholic sources for this idea?
As well, what, exactly, comprises 'Holy, or Apostolic, Tradition?" What documents record it, and is the body of information contained within it still growing?
Since we are both Apostolic churches, I do not believe that many Catholics would find fault with the Orthodox understanding that Scripture is part of Holy Tradition (specifically, it is the written part of it). I assume that Eastern Catholics would agree with such a definition. It would be incorrect, from my understanding, from the Orthodox perspective to claim that Scripture is a part of Tradition and equal to it, since Scripture is not something that is separate from Tradition.
For more on the Orthodox understanding of Holy Tradition, read here:
The Catholic understanding of Sacred Tradition is defined in the Catechism of the Catholic Church:
**"I. THE APOSTOLIC TRADITION
75 "Christ the Lord, in whom the entire Revelation of the most high God is summed up, commanded the apostles to preach the Gospel, which had been promised beforehand by the prophets, and which he fulfilled in his own person and promulgated with his own lips. In preaching the Gospel, they were to communicate the gifts of God to all men. This Gospel was to be the source of all saving truth and moral discipline."32
In the apostolic preaching. . .
76 In keeping with the Lord’s command, the Gospel was handed on in two ways:
orally “by the apostles who handed on, by the spoken word of their preaching, by the example they gave, by the institutions they established, what they themselves had received - whether from the lips of Christ, from his way of life and his works, or whether they had learned it at the prompting of the Holy Spirit”;33
in writing “by those apostles and other men associated with the apostles who, under the inspiration of the same Holy Spirit, committed the message of salvation to writing”.34
. . . continued in apostolic succession
77 "In order that the full and living Gospel might always be preserved in the Church the apostles left bishops as their successors. They gave them their own position of teaching authority."35 Indeed, "the apostolic preaching, which is expressed in a special way in the inspired books, was to be preserved in a continuous line of succession until the end of time."36
78 This living transmission, accomplished in the Holy Spirit, is called Tradition, since it is distinct from Sacred Scripture, though closely connected to it. Through Tradition, "the Church, in her doctrine, life and worship, perpetuates and transmits to every generation all that she herself is, all that she believes."37 "The sayings of the holy Fathers are a witness to the life-giving presence of this Tradition, showing how its riches are poured out in the practice and life of the Church, in her belief and her prayer."38
79 The Father’s self-communication made through his Word in the Holy Spirit, remains present and active in the Church: "God, who spoke in the past, continues to converse with the Spouse of his beloved Son. And the Holy Spirit, through whom the living voice of the Gospel rings out in the Church - and through her in the world - leads believers to the full truth, and makes the Word of Christ dwell in them in all its richness."39
II. THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN TRADITION AND SACRED SCRIPTURE
One common source. . .
80 "Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture, then, are bound closely together, and communicate one with the other. For both of them, flowing out from the same divine well-spring, come together in some fashion to form one thing, and move towards the same goal."40 Each of them makes present and fruitful in the Church the mystery of Christ, who promised to remain with his own “always, to the close of the age”.41
. . . two distinct modes of transmission
81 "Sacred Scripture is the speech of God as it is put down in writing under the breath of the Holy Spirit."42
"And [Holy] Tradition transmits in its entirety the Word of God which has been entrusted to the apostles by Christ the Lord and the Holy Spirit. It transmits it to the successors of the apostles so that, enlightened by the Spirit of truth, they may faithfully preserve, expound and spread it abroad by their preaching."43
82 As a result the Church, to whom the transmission and interpretation of Revelation is entrusted, "does not derive her certainty about all revealed truths from the holy Scriptures alone. Both Scripture and Tradition must be accepted and honored with equal sentiments of devotion and reverence."44
Apostolic Tradition and ecclesial traditions
83 The Tradition here in question comes from the apostles and hands on what they received from Jesus’ teaching and example and what they learned from the Holy Spirit. The first generation of Christians did not yet have a written New Testament, and the New Testament itself demonstrates the process of living Tradition.
Tradition is to be distinguished from the various theological, disciplinary, liturgical or devotional traditions, born in the local churches over time. These are the particular forms, adapted to different places and times, in which the great Tradition is expressed. In the light of Tradition, these traditions can be retained, modified or even abandoned under the guidance of the Church’s Magisterium.’**
No…that’s not what I’m saying. I’m quite certain that Catholics are comfortable with the idea. --and I don’t have any problem with it either. That is, the whole concept doesn’t send me screaming for the KJV on the stand shouting 'Blasphemer!" It’s a very natural idea to me. The problem is going to occur when I mention it. I need to get the entire concept straight, from NOTHING but Catholic sources, so that when and if I do comment I’ll 'get it right."
Its not that Mother Mary will take the prime importance instead of Jesus. Oh no, But its important to know as even in Old Testament, God informed what the ark was to be made and how. Why was the ark important? the importance was the word of God and thats how it should have been, but even the ark was given the importance.
Mother Mary was a miracle as told by the angel to the mother who was barren. Hence God made it so that Mother mary would be born with no sin. and her womb was the best place for the birth of Jesus.
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