Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Piper article about Mary

This article sets the record straight on the veneration of Mary.
The veneration given to Mary in the Roman Catholic church is beyond what is warranted by the New Testament. In fact, it is astonishing how little we see of Mary in the New Testament. Let us honor her unique motherhood. Let us count her blessed as the mother of our incarnate Lord. But let us not put her on a pedestal that neither she nor Jesus would have approved of.

After she turns up with the disciples praying in the upper room in Acts 1:14, she is never mentioned again in the New Testament. This is astonishing to anyone who thinks that the veneration of Mary was an essential part of early church life. It was not important enough to be mentioned in any of the New Testament books after Acts.

In fact, in the one place where Paul comes close to mentioning Mary, he chooses not to, and simply speaks of generic “woman”: “When the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman” (Galatians 4:4).

And when she is mentioned in Acts 1:14, she is “Mary the mother of Jesus” and listed alongside “his brothers.” This inclusion of the brothers has the effect of minimizing any emerging elevation of Mary as having significance only in being the mother of Jesus, rather than the mother of his brothers as well.

Please read the entire article here.


Skeptical said...

Piper downplays the role of Mary in the Bible. He may be right, but it's even worse than that. The idea of deities being born of a virgin was a quite commonplace myth that occurred in the earliest of times well before Mary.

According to one story, the Roman Emperor Augustus's mother was worshiping in the temple of Apollo when she fell asleep and was impregnated by the god [Suetonius Lives of the Caesars: Augustus 94]

Other examples of virgin born Gods:

Krishna was born of the virgin Devaki

Savior Dionysus was born of the virgin Semele.

Buddha too was born of a virgin,

The old Teutonic goddess Hertha was a virgin impregnated by the heavenly Spirit and bore a son.

Scandinavian Frigga was impregnated by the All-Father Odin and bore Balder, the healer and savior of mankind.

Piper should not stop with his analysis of Catholic views of Mary, but rather should critically analyze the very essence of the story itself.

Are we to believe all these virgin birth myths or only that which supports our own views? Perhaps we should acknowledge that all of these myths are just that, myths.

Mike said...

We should believe the facts, I don't advocate blind faith divorced from reason. The historic fact is that Jesus Christ is the only one who claimed to be God yet was raised from the dead. If you would take the time to research the evidence of the Resurrection, you would see why Christianity can make the exclusive claims that it can make. Many have begun the task of critically examining the evidence, only to have the lights of their heart opened by the Holy Spirit through His Word.

Please shoot me an email and we can talk offline. Would love to get to know you on a personal level. After all, the strongest 'evidence' for the truth of Christianity is radically changed lives. I'd love to do what I can to show the love of Christ to you. Do you live in the KC area? Perhaps we could do lunch?

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