During this Christmas season, how should we deal with Mary, the mother of Jesus? Should she be worshiped or respected? Adored or ignored? Magnified or belittled?
For a fresh, fascinating, and biblical viewpoint, I was delighted to interview on Christ in Prophecy Pastor Glenn Meredith of the Brookhaven Church located in McKinney, Texas. Glenn is one of the most anointed and gifted preachers I have ever encountered, and so I am sure you will be challenged by the answers he gave to these questions concerning the adoration of Mary.
Why has Mary been so ignored in the the Protestant world?
Glenn Meredith: Those of us who have grown up as Evangelical Protestant Christians have seen what we would perceive as the abuse and overemphasis of Mary by the Catholic Church and other denominations. But, I also think that too often times we Protestants have under-emphasized her importance as well. It is to our detriment, because Mary is an incredible woman of God and is a person who should be honored. As the Bible says, we should give honor to whom honor is due. We have failed in that regard.
Dr. Reagan: In fact, Mary is one of the few people in the Word of God who is referred to as a righteous person. The Bible also refers to people like Noah and Job as being righteous. Cornelius is referred to as a righteous person, even though he was lost and needed a Savior. Mary stands out in the Bible as one of the very few referred to in that way.
Glenn Meredith: Protestants have overreacted to Catholics placing too high an emphasis on Mary and so have missed what an incredible example of faith she portrayed. She was a person who yielded to the Lord. Mary exhibited a person who walks by faith. She lived out what God can do with a person who is willing to obey the Lord. And, Mary was a young person who really knew the Word of God.Mary exhibited a person who walks by #faith. #Christmas Click To Tweet
Dr. Reagan: Most people are not aware of the fact that at the time that Mary lived, the age of marriage was around 13 years old or so. As soon as a girl went through puberty in that culture, she was considered at an eligible age for marriage. That is not so shocking, for I happen to know that among the Cajun French in Louisiana that 50-60 years ago 13 was also the beginning age for marriage. I know of several Cajun women who were married at the age of 13.
So young an age for marriage tends to be considered worldwide, in fact. Most countries in the world you’ll find people being married that early. We believe that age to be too tender for marriage today in the United States, though.
And so, Mary was not a mature woman. She would have been a young woman at the time the Nativity story took place. Despite her youth, Mary demonstrated such incredible faith.
Glenn Meredith: Yes, Mary’s obedient response to God stands out as an incredible example for us all to emulate.
Dr. Reagan: I agree with the fact that one of the reasons that the Protestant world has ignored Mary is because so many theological, doctrinal abuses concerning Mary have been made, particularly those characterized by the Catholic faith, as well as some of the Protestant denominations.
In the second segment of my interview with Pastor Glenn Meredith concerning Mary’s position in Christianity, we will look at some of the unbiblical misconceptions made about Mary.
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Sure, Mary’s life and obedience needs to be admired. But the Catholics take it to a worship level that equals idol worship; and that is wrong. The many statues, the many prayers to Mary, the rosary…all take one’s eye off of Jesus as our Redeemer. In the Bible, even Jesus refers to her as “woman” instead of mother – I suspect this is to show us that even though she is favored of God, that she is still human and not given the special place to which the Catholics have elevated her.
Even with the large number of us loving and respecting Dr. Reagan and his ministry, I doubt that even his good opinion can shift many of us in our thinking towards Mary, especially those of us who are ex-Catholic. At best, she is an accepted person, approved of God in the New Testament, but any focus on her other than the Bible’s stated role or mention, cannot be received by most of us. I mean, are there books and studies done on Barnabas or Titus or Jude or Timothy or Luke to the extent that is suggested here to focus on Mary? Jesus is our head, perfect, God, and to be worshipped, the rest are fellow human beings such as we are, needing redemption for our sins and only to be approved of God or not approved of God.
the Roman Catholic Church has decided in our lifetime that MARY is “co-savior” and is venerated……………….not just honored. While she has indeed been blessed and should be honored as the Woman who trusted God and gave birth to our savior , Jesus…..she in no way saves us………..that was given to us through the death and resurrection of Jesus the Son of God, and is received by us by grace alone………..We cannot even come to faith without the Holy Spirit comes to us……………. Though out history, peoples of the earth have honored women to the point of worship and lifting them to ‘Goddess’ status……and now this world wide religion has done the unthinkable. “There is no other name in heaven or on earth by which we are saved, other than Jesus the Christ, the Son of God.
As I understand that we need to honor Mary, I don’t believe we should be praying to her or worshipping her. She was righteous but she was not perfect. Jesus is only one who can claim that.
I came across this passage of scripture as I was reading one day which seems to me Jesus himself is refuting the worship of Mary.
I would welcome your thoughts on this passage.
“As Jesus was saying these things, a woman in the crowd called out, “Blessed is the mother who gave you birth and nursed you.”
Jesus replied, “But even more blessed are all who hear the word of God and put it into practice.” Luke 11:27-28
I can’t help to find this article eerie and creepy in some sense. Not an article I was expecting from Lion and Lamb Ministries. Certainly Christians should have nothing to do with Christmas season at all, and now you are bringing in elements of confusion as well.
I am not a protestant, I am a messianic Christian. I reject the church teachings completely. This pastor is creating middleground and acceptance, soon protestants and catholics will be merged again and this will certainly help the thought process. Something here does not sit well with me. I only trust Messianic Jewish teachings.
Susan, Messianic Judaism is a positive thing, but Hebrew Roots Movement is nothing more than a modern-day Judaizer’s movement. Hopefully you’re with the former. For a detailed biblical answer on whether it is okay for a Christian to celebrate Christmas and Easter, check out https://christinprophecyblog.org/2011/11/is-it-okay-for-a-christian-to-celebrate-christmas/.
1. FROM THE ARTICLE – “Glenn is one of the most anointed and gifted preachers I have ever encountered, and so I am sure you will be challenged by the answers he gave to these questions concerning the adoration of Mary.”
QUESTION – Where does God say in His word that He anoints and gifts preachers in different measure?
2. FROM THE ARTICLE – “Those of us who have grown up as Evangelical Protestant Christians have seen what we would perceive as the abuse and overemphasis of Mary by the Catholic Church and other denominations.”
RESPONSE – The Roman Catholic Church’s official teaching on the person of Mary –
“Joined to Christ the head and in communion with all his saints, the faithful must in the first place reverence the memory of the glorious ever Virgin Mary, Mother of God and of our Lord Jesus Christ… Because of the gift of sublime grace she far surpasses all creatures, both in heaven and on earth… The Immaculate Virgin preserved free from all stain of original sin, was taken up body and soul into heavenly glory, when her earthly life was over, and exalted by the Lord as Queen over all things, that she might be the more fully conformed to her Son, the Lord of lords (cf. Apoc. 19:16) and conqueror of sin and death” (Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, chap. 8, I, 52,53; II, 59, pp. 378,381- 382).
“Rightly, therefore, the Fathers see Mary not merely as passively engaged by God, but as freely cooperating in the work of man’s 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. Hence not a few of the early Fathers gladly assert with him in their preaching … ‘death through Eve, life through Mary.’ This union of the mother with the Son in the work of salvation is made manifest from the time of Christ’s virginal conception up to his death” (Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, chap. 8, II, 56, pp. 380-381).
“Taken up to heaven she did not lay aside this saving office but by her manifold intercession continues to bring us the gifts of eternal salvation. By her maternal charity, she cares for the brethren of her Son, who still journey on earth surrounded by dangers and difficulties, until they are led into their blessed home. Therefore the Blessed Virgin is invoked in the Church under the titles of Advocate, Helper, Benefactress, and Mediatrix” (Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, chap. 8, II, 62, pp. 382-383).
“Mary has by grace been exalted above all angels and men to a place second only to her Son, as the most holy mother of God who was involved in the mysteries of Christ: she is rightly honoured by a special cult in the Church. … The sacred synod teaches this Catholic doctrine advisedly and at the same time admonishes all the sons of the Church that the cult, especially the liturgical cult, of the Blessed Virgin, be generously fostered, and that the practices and exercises of devotion towards her, recommended by the teaching authority of the Church in the course of centuries be highly esteemed, and that those decrees, which were given in the early days regarding the cult images of Christ, the Blessed Virgin and the saints, be religiously observed” (Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, chap. 8, IV, The Cult of the Blessed Virgin in the Church, 66,67, pp. 384-385).
3. FROM THE ARTICLE – “Mary’s obedient response to God stands out as an incredible example for us all to emulate.”
RESPONSE – “For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:” (1 Peter 2:21)
“He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.” (1 John 2:6)
“Righteousness shall go before him; and shall set us in the way of his steps.” (Psalm 85:13)
“And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.” (Luke 9:23)
“Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” (John 8:12)
Following segments with address the fallacy of Mary veneration.
Trish Acts 18:24 thru 28, says Apollo was gifted in a different measure.
I’m very disappointed in the artwork chosen for this. I don’t believe Mary would have shown her clevage or sat in a way to expose herself in this way. Too many women and men today accept this way of immodesty as normal or ok, but it truly shouldn’t be promoted by a Christian ministry.
That was the common Medieval style of dress women wore at the time the painting was made.
Very good article, and yes Mary was very righteous, God chose well didn’t he for the mother of his son. So glad Lamb Lion and Olive Tree Ministries include the prophetic bible prophecies of Yeshua in their sermons. What a Light to so many of us who know the signs of the coming of the Lord. Jerusalem being declared the Holy City, the City of David is epic in the End Times. There is and always will be controversy surrounding Jerusalem, Satan wants to destroy it just like he tried to destroy Christ and stopping him from saving the world from sin and death, but Satan was defeated and will be defeated eternally. Very exciting to see all things be fulfilled.
I agree with the article and appreciate the proper perspective on the woman Mary. I have not, however, been able to find the verse/reference that substantiates Dr. Reagan’s statement “In fact, Mary is one of the few people in the Word of God who is referred to as a righteous person.” She did find “favor” with God, but I cannot find the word “righteous” connected directly to her. Would you send me the reference, please?
Zacharias, Elizabeth and Joseph were particularly labeled as righteous (Mat. 1:18-19; Lk. 1:5-6). While Mary wasn’t directly labeled righteous in the Gospels, God still highly favored her and considered her blessed among women, accolades never given to unrighteous people (Lk. 1:26-38).
Thank you for the article —
Although I am staunchly, exegetically, against Catholicism, I see the discussion of Mary as a human issue. Incidentally, 1 Peter 3:7, among other places state God’s attitude toward
females in general — notwithstanding the way Jesus related to women.
However, Mary has been sucked into an errant ideology, from my perspective.
I have heard friends who thought somehow that they had the license to curse Mary — a mother; yet would consider cursing his friend’s mother completely out of the question.
So, it’s more than just about Mary — she is on the receiving end of a battle of ideologies.
Is anyone else having a problem with the print-friendly version of this blog post? Every time I click on the printer icon, I get an “Inactivity Timeout” message and no content.
Haven’t read it yet, but I can’t wait after reading some of the comments. Thanks!
Keith, thank you for bringing that printer issue to my attention. It looks like the print plugin provider changed some things up this week, so I’ve just installed a new print feature. Hope that works better.
At the beginning of Part 1, you state that Cornelius was a “righteous person” who was “…lost and needed a savior.” How can you say that in light of Acts 10, particularly verses such as 2, 4, 22, 31, 34, and especially verse 43?
When I read through Acts 10, I get the distinct impression that Cornelius had in fact experienced “the new birth” and was truly a born-again believer, not an unsaved man. How can one be “righteous” and “just” and yet not be right with God? How could God ‘hear their prayers’ and ‘remember their gifts to the poor’ if they were not His child? I know that God hears the prayer for salvation and sees everything we do, but what about “remembering” our gifts? Thank you.
Though Cornelius was devoted the God and a good man, he knew nothing about Jesus Christ as his Savior. Once Peter preached about Christ, Acts 10:44-48 says Cornelius and his household believed and were baptised and received the Holy Spirit.
The Catholic church doesn’t encourage any form of worship other than God the Trinity. If there is a trend of sorts its always to do with individual/s, mostly because of the Catechism of its faith is still to filter through, There seems to be no urgency among the church authorities, may be said to be a fault with it.