Part One’s dialogue between Mr. Twilight and Mr. Daylight’s dialogue covered the whole sweep of Mariolatry but some matters must be surveyed and studied in reference to the Mary’s usurpation of the Father and the Son.
Rome’s Idolatrous title for her idol Mary the ‘Mother of God’
The doctrine of ‘Mary, the Mother of God,’ as we know it today is the result of centuries of growth, often stimulated by pronouncements of church prelates. And yet the full-fledged system of Mariolatry is a comparatively recent development in Roman Catholic dogma. In fact the last one hundred years have quite appropriately been called the ‘Century of Mary’.
As late as the fourth century there are no indications of any special veneration of Mary. Such veneration at that time could begin only if one were recognised as a saint, and only the martyrs were counted as saints. But since there was no evidence that Mary had suffered a martyr’s death, she was excluded from sainthood. Later the ascetics came to be acknowledged as among the saints. That proved to be the opening wedge for the sainthood of Mary, for surely she of all people, it was alleged, must have lived an ascetic life! The church acknowledged that Christ was born of the Virgin Mary. Apocryphal tradition built on those possibilities, and slowly the system emerged.
The phrase ‘Mother of God’ originated in the Council of Ephesus, in the year 431. It occurs in the Creed of Chalcedon, which was adopted by the council which met in that city in 451, and in regard to the person of Christ it declared that He was, ‘Born of the Virgin Mary, the Mother of God according to the manhood.’
S. E. Anderson says:
‘Roman priests call Mary the ‘mother of God’, a name impossible, illogical and unscriptural. It is impossible, for God can have no mother. He is eternal and without beginning while Mary was born and died within a few short years. It is illogical, for God does not require a mother for His existence. Jesus said, ‘Before Abraham was born, I am’ (John 8:58). IT is unscriptural, for the Bible gives Mary no such contradictory name. Mary was the honoured mother of the human body of Jesus – no more – as every Catholic must admit if he wishes to be reasonable and Scriptural. The divine nature of Christ existed from eternity past, long before Mary was born. Jesus never called her ‘mother’; He called her ‘woman’.’ [From the booklet Is Rome the True Church? P20]
Furthermore, if the Roman terminology is correct and Mary is to be called God’s mother, then Joseph was God’s step-father, James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas were God’s brothers, Elizabeth was God’s aunt, John the Baptist was God’s cousin, Heli was God’s grandfather, and Adam was God’s 59th great grandfather. Such references to God’s relatives sound more like a page out of Mormonism than Christianity.
The correct statement of the person of Christ in this regard is: As His human nature had no father, so His divine nature had no mother.
The Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary
It is well known to all that a controversy on this subject has existed in the Church of Rome. The favourers and opponents of the notion that the Virgin was born without sin, denounced each other as heretics.
The extent to which the bitterness of spirit was carried is manifest from the following passage in the Constitutions of Pope Sixtus V.
‘Certain preachers, as we have heard, of different orders, in their sermons to the people, have not hitherto been ashamed publicly to affirm in different cities and provinces, and do not desist from daily teaching, that all those who hold or agree that the same glorious and immaculate Mother of God was conceived without the stain of original sin, are guilty of mortal sin, or are heretics; that those who celebrate the service of the said immaculate conception, and those who hear the sermons of those preachers who affirm that she was conceived without this stain, sin grievously.’ – p262 Can. Et Dec. Trid. Lip 1846
The Constitutions then forbid that either party should denounce the other as heretical.
In fact, so wide was the gulf between both parties, that there were certain religious services in the Church of Rome in which they could not unite. For example, in the Carmelite confraternities, offices of the Immaculate Conception are used, in which there is constant mention of the sinless conception of Mary. Now, those who dissent from that notion could not join with Carmelites in offering up such prayers, and thus Roman Catholics were so divided in sentiment, that on certain occasions they could not unite in prayer.
The Council of Trent left the question undecided, but Pope Pius IX on 8th December 1854, dogmatically decreed that the Virgin was conceived without sin. In thus deciding the point –
- He has added a new article to the creed, an article never as such until eighteen hundred years after Christ.
- He has contradicted the views of the fathers of the primitive Church, and many of the most eminent doctors and saints of his own Church. Canus, Bishop of the Canary Isles at that time, says, ‘All the holy Fathers, with one consent, affirm the blessed Virgin to have been conceived in original sin.’ – Loc. Theol. P. 348. Colon. 1605
Thus, the Pope’s decision excited considerable commotion in the Church of Rome.
The Bodily Assumption of Mary
The latest addition to the long list of Roman Catholic believes (‘inventions’ might be a more accurate term) cam on November 1, 1950, with the ex cathedra pronouncement by Pope Pius XII from St. Peter’s chair that Mary’s body was raised from the grave shortly after she died, that her body and soul were reunited, and that she was taken up and enthroned as Queen of Heaven. And to this pronouncement there was added the usual warning that ‘anyone who may henceforth doubt or deny this doctrine is utterly fallen away from the divine and Catholic faith.’ That means that it is a mortal sin for any Roman Catholic to refuse to believe this doctrine.
According to tradition Mary’s assumption was on this wise:
‘On the third day after Mary’s death, when the apostles gathered around her tomb, they found it empty. The sacred body had been carried up to the celestial paradise. Jesus Himself came to conduct her hither; the whole court of heaven came to welcome with songs of triumph the Mother of the divine Lord. What a chorus of exultation! Hark how they cry, ‘Lift up your gates, O ye princes, and be lifted up, O eternal gates, and the Queen of Glory shall enter in.’’
This is the type of account that might be expected from a medieval monk who was not satisfied with the information given in the Bible concerning Mary, and who undertook to describe the events as he imagined they might have happened. Here we are told that Mary was not only received into heaven, but that she was raised to a pre-eminence far above that which it is possible for any of the saints to attain. Because of her alleged co-operation in the passion of her Son, she is assigned a dignity beyond even the highest of the archangels. She was crowned Queen of Heaven by the eternal Father, and received a throne at her Son’s right hand.
Thus, Mary’s body was miraculously preserved from corruption, and her resurrection and ascension are made to parallel Christ’s resurrection and ascension. And she, like Him, is said to be enthroned in heaven where she makes intercession for the millions of people throughout the world who seek her assistance. This was a natural consequence of the 1854 pronouncement of the Immaculate Conception of Mary – a supernatural exit from life. A mysterious halo of holiness falls over her entire being. Whereas the glorification of the saints will take place at the end of the world, her glorification has already taken place.
While Pius XII was the Marian Pope the present occupier of the Vatican, Pope John Paul II, has exceeded him in his actions. He is the greatest Mariologist of them all. He is intent to point the world to Mary. As he does so he points the world away from Christ.
The Secret Purpose of Mariolatry
Dee Smith states:
‘Presiding over the two functions of Roman Catholic womanhood, the child-bearing program and the unpaid labour pool, stands the puppet figure of the Blessed Virgin, at once the instigator and the patroness.
Compared with her services in insuring the cushioned privilege and power of the hierarchy by subjugating the Roman Catholic women, the enormous wealth brought to Rome’s exchequer by the financial exploitations of Mariolatry is merely incidental. Yet it is worth a glance.
From the sale of ‘holy’ pictures, leaflets, scapulars, candles burned before altars, fees for masses and so on, the staggering intake at commercialised shrines such as St. Anne de Beaupre, Our Lady of Guadalupe, and others, a steady stream of gold flows into hierarchical coffers One might also paraphrase the Roman title, ‘Mother of God,’ to ‘Minter of Gold.’
But all this is nothing beside the Blessed Virgin’s vital and indispensable function in maintaining the status quo. Without the inspiration of the Blessed Virgin, the Roman Catholic woman could not be kept at her business of childbearing and drudging. Without the subjection of the Catholic woman, without her submissive acception of the yoke of Mary caricatured by the Roman Church, the all-powerful, self-indulgent ambitious men who constitute the Roman hierarchy would not be able to use their power as a weapon against human liberties and human rights.
Without doubt, the devotion to the Blessed Virgin constantly impressed upon the Roman population by its clergy is inspired not by piety, but by expediency. For the clergy, devotion to Mary is not merely a matter of dollars and cents, but of survival. Their sinecure depends on it. That is the secret purpose of Mariolatry.’
The contrast between Roman and Protestant Teaching
Dr. Joseph Zacchello, one time editor of The Convert, Clairton, Pennsylvania made the following statement concerning Mary’s rightful place in the Christian church:
‘The most beautiful story ever told is the story of the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. And a part of that beautiful story is the account of Mary, the mother of our Lord.
Mary was a pure, virtuous woman. Nothing is clearer in all the Word of God than this truth. Read the accounts of Matthew and Luke and you see her as she is – pure in mind, humble, under the hand of God, thankful for the blessing of God, having faith to believe the message of God, being wise to understand the purpose of God in her life.
Mary was highly favoured beyond all other women. It was her unique honour that she should be the mother of our Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed was Mary among women. Through her, God gave His most priceless gift to man.
But, though Mary be worthy of all honour as a woman favoured of God beyond all others, and though she be indeed a splendid, beautiful, godly character, and though she be the mother of our Lord, Mary can neither intercede for us with God, nor can she save us, and certainly we must not worship her. There is nothing clearer in the Word of God than this truth.
Let us notice this truth as it is diligently compared with the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church and the Word of God. The following quotations are taken from the book ‘The Glories of Mary’ which was written by Bishop Alphonse de Liguori, one of the greatest devotional writers of the Roman Catholic Church, and the Word of God taken from the Douay Version which is approved by the Church. The Editor’s notice says, ‘Everything that our saint has written is, as it were, a summary of Catholic tradition on the subject that it treats; it is not an individual author, it is, so to speak, the church herself that speaks to us by the voice of her prophets, her apostles, her pontiffs, her saints, her fathers, her doctors of all nations and ages. No other book appears to be more worthy of recommendation in this respect than The Glories of Mary.’ [1931 edition. Redemptorist Fathers, Brooklyn]
Note the following deadly parallel:
Mary is given the place belonging to Christ
Roman Catholic Church
‘And is truly a mediatress of peace between sinners and God. Sinners receive pardon by … Mary alone.’ (pp 82,83). ‘Mary is our life … Mary in obtaining this grace for sinners by her intercession, thus restores them to life.’ (p.80) ‘He fails and is LOST who has not recourse to Mary.’ (p94).
The Word of God
For there is one God, and ONE Mediator of God and men, the man Christ Jesus’ (1 Tim. 2:5) ‘Jesus saith to him: I am the way, and the truth and the life. No man cometh to the Father, but by me.’ (John 14:6). ‘Christ … is our life.’ (Col. 3:4).
Mary is glorified more than Christ
Roman Catholic Church
‘The Holy Church commands a WORSHIP peculiar to Mary.’ (p. 130). ‘Many things … are asked from God, and are not granted; they are asked from MARY and are obtained,’ for ‘She … is even Queen of Hell, and Sovereign Mistress of the Devils.’ (pp. 127,141,143).
The Word of God
‘In the Name of Jesus Christ … For there is no other name under Heaven given to men, whereby we must be saved.’ (Acts 3:6, 4:12). His Name is ‘above every name … not only in this world, but also in that which is to come.’ (Eph. 1:21).
Mary is the Gate to Heaven instead of Christ
Roman Catholic Church
‘Mary is called … the gate of heaven because no once can enter that blessed kingdom without passing through HER’ (p. 160)
‘The Way of Salvation is open to none otherwise than through MARY,’ and since ‘Our salvation is in the hands of Mary ... He who is protected by Mary will be saved, he who is not will be lost’ (pp 169,170)
The Word of God
‘I am the door. By me, if any man enter in, he shall be saved,’ says Christ (John 10:1,7,9)
‘Jesus saith unto him, I am the way … no man cometh to the Father but by me’ (John 14:6) ‘Neither is there Salvation in any other’ (Acts 4:12).
Mary is given the power of Christ
Roman Catholic Church
‘All power is given to thee in Heaven and on earth,’ so that ‘at the command of MARY all obey – even God … and thus … God has placed the whole church … under the domination of Mary’ (pp 180,181).
Mary is ‘also the advocate of the whole human race … for she can do what she wills with God.’ (p193)
The Word of God
‘All power is given to me in Heaven and in earth,’ so that ‘in the Name of Jesus every knee should bow,’ ‘that in all things He may hold the primacy’ (Matt. 28:18; Phil. 2:9-11; Col. 1:18)
‘But if any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the Just; and he is the propitiation for our sins’ (I John 2:1,2).
Mary is the peacemaker instead of Jesus Christ our Peace
Roman Catholic Church
‘Mary is the peacemaker between sinners and God’ (p., 197)
‘We often more quickly obtain what we ask by calling on the name of Mary than by invoking that of Jesus.’ ‘She … is our salvation, our life, our hope, our counsel, our refuge and our help’ (pp. 254, 257).
The Word of God
‘But now in Christ Jesus, you, who sometimes were far off, are made nigh by the blood of Christ. For He is our peace.’ (Eph. 2:13,14).
‘Hitherto you have not asked anything in my name. Ask, and you shall receive,’ for, ‘Whatsoever we shall ask according to His will, He heareth us.’ (John 16:23,24).
Mary is given the Glory that belongs to Christ alone
Roman Catholic Church
‘The whole Trinity, O Mary, gave thee a name … above every other name, that at Thy name, every knee should bow, of things in heaven, on earth, and under the earth.’ (p. 260)
The Word of God
‘God also hath highly exalted Him and hath given Him a Name which is above all names, that at the Name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those that are in Heaven, on earth and under the earth’ (Phil. 2:9,10)
Liguori, more than any other one person has been responsible for promoting Mariolatry in the Roman Church, dethroning Christ and enthroning Mary in the hearts of the people. Yet instead of excommunicating him for his heresies, the Roman Catholic Church has canonised him as a saint and has published his book in many editions.
In a widely used prayer book, the Raccolta, which has been especially indulgenced by several popes and which therefore is accepted by Romanists as authoritative, we read such as the following:
‘Hail, Queen, Mother of Mercy, our Life. Sweetness, and Hope, all Hail! To thee we cry, banished sons of Eve; to thee we sigh, groaning and weeping in this vale of tears.’
‘We fly beneath thy shelter, O holy Mother of God, despise not our petitions in our necessity and deliver us always from all perils, O glorious and blessed Virgin.’
‘Heart of Mary, Mother of God … Worthy of all the veneration of angels and men … In thee let the Holy Church find safe shelter; protect it, and be its asylum, its tower, its strength.’
‘Sweet heart of Mary be my salvation.’
‘Leave me not, My Mother, in my own hands, or I am lost; let me but cling to thee. Save me, my Hope, from hell.’
Also in the Raccolta prayers are addressed to Joseph:
‘Benign Joseph, our guide, protect us and the Holy Church.’
‘Guardian of Virgins, and Holy Father Joseph, to whose faithful keeping Christ Jesus, innocence itself, and Mary, Virgin of virgins, were committed, I pray and beseech thee by those two dear pledges, Jesus and Mary, that being preserved from all uncleanness, I may with spotless mind, pure heart and chaste body, ever most chastely serve Jesus and Mary. Amen.’
The rosary, which is by far the most popular Roman Catholic ritual prayer contains fifty ‘Hail Marys’ The Hail Mary (or Ave Maria) is as follows.
‘Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst woman and blessed is the fruit of thy womb Jesus, Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death, Amen.’
Charles Chiniquy, a former priest from Montreal, Canada, who became a Presbyterian minister and author, tells of the following conversation between himself and his bishop when doubts began to assail him regarding the place given to Mary.
‘My lord, who has saved you and me upon the cross?’
He answered, ‘Jesus Christ.’
‘And who paid your debt and mine by shedding His blood; was it Mary or Jesus?’
He said, ‘Jesus Christ.’
‘Now, my lord, when Jesus and Mary were on earth, who loved the sinner more, was it Jesus or Mary?’
Again he answered that it was Jesus.
‘Did any sinner come to Mary on earth to be saved?’
Do you remember that any sinner has gone to Jesus to be saved?’
‘Have they been rebuked?’
‘Do you remember that Jesus ever said to sinners, ‘Come to Mary and she will save you’?’
‘No,’ he said,
‘Do you remember that Jesus has said to poor sinners, ‘Come to me’?’
‘Yes, He ahs said it.’
‘Has He ever retracted those words?’
‘And who was, then the more powerful to save sinners?’ I asked
‘O, it was Jesus!’
‘Now, my lord, since Jesus and Mary are in heaven, can you show me in the Scriptures that Jesus has lost anything of His desire and power to save sinners, or that He has delegated this power to Mary?’
And the bishop answered, ‘No’.
‘Then, my lord,’ I asked, ‘Why do we not go to Him and to Him alone? Why do we invite poor sinners to come to Mary when by your own confession she is nothing compared with Jesus, in power, in mercy, in love, and in compassion for the sinner?’
To that the bishop could give no answer.
[Extract from Fifty Years in the Church of Rome p, 262]
In a church in Malta, on either side eof he altar is a large picture. That on the right represents a Roman Catholic dying; the priest is present, administering the last sacraments; angels descend with hovering wings and bless him and the Virgin Mary, life size, with a halo of glory around her, is waiting to receive him into Glory; Jesus Christ being represented as a little baby is in Heaven. It is the Ashtaroth of Babylon; that is what it is. Fancy Christ Jesus being represented as a little baby in Heaven; and the Virgin Mary standing in a halo of glory, looking down at the dying man to lead him through purgatory to Glory.
On the other side of the altar there is also the picture of a man dying. He is a heretic – a Protestant. The priest comes to give him the last sacraments, but he turns his head away and will not have him. Thousands of devils are represented as snapping at him, and the Lord Jesus Christ in that picture is represented as a full-sized man, with a large dagger, thrusting it into his heart and killing him. The Virgin Mary is represented as a full-sized woman, turning away weeping, and the only one showing sympathy for the fallen man. I ask you, dear friends, when our Lord Jesus Christ, who poured out His soul unto death for us, is thus represented, is it not high time to speak out, and show up such iniquitous practices? I tell you, my Protestant friends, you are getting weak as a nation, because your ministers come not out more boldly and show up this system, called in the Bible, ‘The Mystery of Iniquity’. There is too much of the feeling by which Nebuchadnezzar was animated, when he walked around Babylon and said, ‘Is not this great Babylon which I have built?’ We need more Daniels; more ministers like the three Hebrew children who feared not the furnace. There must, I say, be more bold witnessing for the Master if you are to expect God’s blessing upon you.