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Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos #419318
06/13/19 08:41 PM
06/13/19 08:41 PM
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Hawthorne, NY, USA
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Anaphora Offline OP
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Will someone in the forum please explain to me why Mother of God, the Holy Theotokos, the God-bearer, is not honored or venerated in most Protestant churches? Protestants believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God. Why do they not acknowledge the BEARER OF GOD to earth through an earthly Mother? Do they believe that Christ suddenly appeared on Earth directly from heaven? And not born of a Virgin?
To me it is illogical.
Anaphora

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: Anaphora] #419319
06/14/19 03:11 AM
06/14/19 03:11 AM
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Responding as an X-Baptist Fundamentalist, who was in the kind of churches that just HATED anything Catholic, including and especially veneration of the Theotokos, I would offer the following:

1. They are taught, wrongly, that to honor is the same as to worship.

2. They are profoundly ignorant of Christian history. For them, Jesus ascended into heaven and then......the Protestant Reformation took place. When I was in Fundamentalism, if you had asked me about St. Ignatius, Polycarp, or any of the multitude of other Early Church Fathers, I would have given you that deer in the headlights look.

3. They are taught nothing at all about the sermons and writings of the first pastors of the Church, the Early Fathers. For them, it is the Bible alone that is the whole sum and source of truth. In other words, if it ain't in the Bible, it is wrong.

4. They have been influenced by a number of awful, lying, atrocious books, such as Lorraine Boettner's ROMAN CATHOLICISM and Alexander Hislop's atrocious piece of screed, THE TWO BABYLONS, where he tries to make a connection between Roman Catholic piety and that of pagan Babylon, making the utterly false and ridiculous claim that our "worship" of Mary comes from and is a continuation of the ancient Babylonian cult worship of Seramis. ROMAN CATHOLICISM's claims were investigated by the publisher and found to be so bad, so ahistorical, so distorted, that he refused to have further contact with the book (and eventually converted to the Catholic faith). There are also the simplistic JACK CHICK tracts, horrible little packets of outright lies about the apostolic Christian faith which are gobbled up by the simple-minded such as I was. I read all of them and both of the books. To call them garbage is to insult garbage everywhere on the planet.

5. Most Protestant people implicitly trust their pastors and therefore do not take the time or trouble to acquaint themselves with the Early Church Fathers or the wealth of other publications which are available to them, thus they stay in stygian darkness theologically.

6. What turned me around was coming to understand the covenant relationship of God and His Creation, especially mankind. When I came to understand that Mary is the New Eve, and came to understand that therefore, just as Adam and Eve would have been king and queen over Creation, now Jesus and Mary are King and Queen, well, that solved that problem for me. Of course, the real problem here is that Americans have no - absolutely NO - understanding of kingdom and yet we live in a Kingdom - the Kingdom of God. If you don't understand kingdom principles of rulership, how can you understand the position of the queen of the kingdom.

7. Just because Mary bore the Son of God does not make Her special in Fundamentalism. God could have chosen anyone to do that, and they don't see it in the way we do. This again comes from a lack of understanding, as well as total lack of knowledge about Her such as you can find in the non-canonical books which speak of Her. I think it might be the Gospel of Thomas which speaks in more detail about Her being given to the Temple as a consecrated Temple virgin. Again, for these people, it's the Bible alone as the final word, so their ability to learn and understand is deeply truncated.

Those are just a few things that come to my mind.

I remember back when I began to investigate the apostolic faith and came to an understanding not only of Her position in the Covenant of God, but more than that, as Jesus's Mother!! Oooooooooooh!!!! And I had insulted Her when a Fundamentalist. Wow! The first - FIRST - thing I wanted to confess when this got hold of me was that I had done something bad and insulting to Jesus's Mommy. And what man would not deal severely with someone who insulted his mother??? Some of these guys are in for a really, REALLY rude awakening when they meet our Lord and see His Mother seated as Queen at His right hand!!!

Hope that helps.

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: Irish_Ruthenian] #419320
06/14/19 01:35 PM
06/14/19 01:35 PM
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Let me offer one slight modification:

Originally Posted by Irish_Ruthenian
Responding as an X-Baptist Fundamentalist, who was in the kind of churches that just HATED anything Catholic, including and especially veneration of the Theotokos, I would offer the following:


2. They are profoundly ignorant of Christian history. For them, Jesus ascended into heaven and the Bible miraculously descended from heaven (in King James English) complete with chapter and verse numbers but minus those troublesome intertestamental books, all of which the people were not permitted to read and then......the Protestant Reformation took place.

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: Thomas the Seeker] #419321
06/14/19 01:43 PM
06/14/19 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Thomas the Seeker
Let me offer one slight modification:

Originally Posted by Irish_Ruthenian
Responding as an X-Baptist Fundamentalist, who was in the kind of churches that just HATED anything Catholic, including and especially veneration of the Theotokos, I would offer the following:


2. They are profoundly ignorant of Christian history. For them, Jesus ascended into heaven and the Bible miraculously descended from heaven (in King James English) complete with chapter and verse numbers but minus those troublesome intertestamental books, all of which the people were not permitted to read and then......the Protestant Reformation took place.




Hahahaha!!! Spot on, Thomas! I quite forgot about the Feast of the Descent of the Holy KJV AV 1611. Thanks for reminding me of that. If I remember correctly, the date of that feast coincides with the Protty celebration of Luther's nailing his 95 objections to the door of the Wittenberg Church. It's a double solemnity!

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: Anaphora] #419322
06/15/19 05:19 PM
06/15/19 05:19 PM
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Virginia!
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Irish Ruthenian: That you choose to refer to other Christians as "Protty" says more about you than it does about them. And what it says is not positive!

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: Anaphora] #419326
06/24/19 06:49 PM
06/24/19 06:49 PM
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Paraná, Brazil
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Santiago Tarsicio Offline
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Protestants are taught from an early age to doubt and question all that Catholics do and believe; are constantly reinventing the wheel; every new generation there are profound biblical studies to understand Christianity "original ". In spite of Mary being Theotokos to Martin Luther, you know how it is: Luther perhaps was "Catholic" too much; know how it is, tradition is Catholic stuff, etc, etc. Thus, they do not realize that Marian dogmas are Christocentric, do not realize that Catholics defend Mary's divine motherhood to affirm the divinity of Jesus Christ. They end up proposing an illogical, meaningless theology, when they do not fall into old errors, like Nestorianism (I heard from a Pentecostal pastor one time that the material body of Jesus Christ was just an avatar, something similar to Krishna, "incarnation" of Vishnu).

The difficulty lies in the false understanding they have of Marian veneration, for many Protestants it configures as idolatry; then "Theotokos" coming from a Catholic sounds to Protestant ears as blasphemy, as if Mary were a previous deity or in co-existence with the Holy Trinity. So they need to rescue the original religion and correct the Catholic error by saying that Mary is "Mother of Jesus" and not "Mother of God".

But in more enlightened Protestant circles, which pay close attention to history and the first great councils, the title of Mother of God is not a problem. But this enlightenment is not the rule, it is not uniform; in fact there is confusion, in other circles there are people rejecting the title of Mother of God.

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: Anaphora] #419328
06/24/19 08:00 PM
06/24/19 08:00 PM
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Hollidaysburg, PA
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"in more enlightened Protestant circles"

Let's not be judgmental or triumphalistic with terms like this. Each person has been placed where he is by the Grace of God and His Divine Plan. Church history is full of the polemics of an earlier time and perpetuating them is a constant problem ind the goal of having all Christians come into communion again. It serves no one to use pejorative terms like that which the Administrator called out above.

Bob
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Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: theophan] #419329
06/24/19 09:22 PM
06/24/19 09:22 PM
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Paraná, Brazil
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Santiago Tarsicio Offline
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Originally Posted by theophan
"in more enlightened Protestant circles"

Let's not be judgmental or triumphalistic with terms like this. Each person has been placed where he is by the Grace of God and His Divine Plan. Church history is full of the polemics of an earlier time and perpetuating them is a constant problem ind the goal of having all Christians come into communion again. It serves no one to use pejorative terms like that which the Administrator called out above.

Bob
Moderator

I do not see any triumphalism. It is a real problem and one needs to describe it. There is also confusion and abuse among Catholics, but I have dealt with Protestantism which is the subject of the thread. Moreover, in some countries this is very clear; in South America, for example, there are abysses between the various Protestant denominations, some are much more enlightened than others (Going deeper, there are denominations that are unfortunately pure business, exploit poor people, want them to live in ignorance and it would be against charity to omit).

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: Anaphora] #419330
06/24/19 10:20 PM
06/24/19 10:20 PM
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Santiago Tarsicio:

Christ is in our midst!!

It is triumphalism on OUR part when we look down on Protestants and judge them by how they differ from us. To use the term "enlightened" shows a triumphalistic attitude. They, from their point of view, see us as far off the original faith.

Yes, their approach to the Theotokos is flawed and makes a big gap in other theology. But they are where they are. Our calling is to faithfully and humbly explain the Truth that as been passed down to us from the Apostles, gently pointing out that "sola Scriptura" is NOT the faith that came out of the Apostolic era. I have read and heard--and was horrified--to hear that Jesus "passed through Mary without taking anything from her, like water passes through a pipe." The explanation went on that Jesus was an original creation having nothing to do with Mary or anyone else--almost an outside creation idea. That's how far some would go to be against the Latin Catholic Church, which is the starting point of rejection for many Protestant bodies.

But nothing here gives us the right to call them "unenlightened."

Bob

Bob

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: Anaphora] #419331
06/24/19 11:07 PM
06/24/19 11:07 PM
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It is not being judgmental or triumphalist to use the word "enlightened." What does enlightened mean? It is a way of saying that someone has come into a place of deeper knowledge, or has "seen the light," as one might say. The fact is (and perhaps this is part of the attitude problem I have been accused of having) that Protestant pastors, and especially those in Fundamentalist assemblies, deliberately keep their congregation from knowing about the early history of the Church. To do so would cause massive problems, thus, they are kept in the dark - i.e., without light, or unenlightened.

Can you believe that I was 50 years old, had been in Protestantism for 25 years, and very dedicated at that, and when I encountered knowledgeable Catholics on the Internet, it was the first time I had even heard of men like St. Ignatius, Polycarp, St. Irenaeus, etc? I remember one former Methodist pastor who, on a Catholic convert board, told us that in 4 years of seminary study leading to his ordination, he heard exactly NO - that's ZERO, ZIP, NADA, ZILCH - quotes from the Early Fathers of the Church. That, my friends, is not education. That is brainwashing, pure and simple.

The simple fact is that there are people who are 'unenlightened" because they have not been taught. It is not a pejorative, it is simply a statement of fact. They don't know because they have not been taught. Deliberately. Yet many of them have a deep love for Christ within the paradigm they have been given. And when they convert - they make super Orthodox and Catholics!
'

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: Anaphora] #419332
06/25/19 12:53 AM
06/25/19 12:53 AM
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Christ is in our midst!!

What if we turn the tables? What chance would a Protestant have of engaging us in dialogue about this issue if he insisted that we were caught in the Devil's idolatry on this issue?

IMHO, none. So my point is that we need to avoid language that is inflammatory or derogatory if we wish to speak to our brethren who do not have the faith gift that we have. We still must recognize that the others have a deep love for Christ and are not afraid of publicly speaking of it--something that we in the Apostolic Churches seem not to do; it's not part of how we are taught to operate.

Bob

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: theophan] #419336
06/25/19 11:51 PM
06/25/19 11:51 PM
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Speaking of language, if I may add a word to the conversation, I feel the phrase "Mother of God" (Mater Dei) which is used prominently in the west, can be misleading and does seem to convey the sense that Mary somehow generates and is prior to God, and so gives umbrage to our Protestant brethren. The Latin phrase for Theotokos is Deipara - God bearer, or the One who bore God - and just might find a more receptive audience among them.

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: Anaphora] #419337
06/26/19 01:32 PM
06/26/19 01:32 PM
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Christ is in our midst!!

The term "Mother of God" was adopted by one of the first Ecumenical Councils. The term predates the adoption of the accepted New Testament canon of Scripture. It is a statement of the Church's theology that is related to who Jesus Christ is. It is actually auxiliary to this latter point. The whole idea of our salvation hinges on getting Jesus Christ right--Who He is. He is God in the flesh. If we don't get Him right, then we actually don't get our salvation right.

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: theophan] #419338
06/26/19 05:16 PM
06/26/19 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by theophan
Santiago Tarsicio:

Christ is in our midst!!

It is triumphalism on OUR part when we look down on Protestants and judge them by how they differ from us. To use the term "enlightened" shows a triumphalistic attitude. They, from their point of view, see us as far off the original faith.

Yes, their approach to the Theotokos is flawed and makes a big gap in other theology. But they are where they are. Our calling is to faithfully and humbly explain the Truth that as been passed down to us from the Apostles, gently pointing out that "sola Scriptura" is NOT the faith that came out of the Apostolic era. I have read and heard--and was horrified--to hear that Jesus "passed through Mary without taking anything from her, like water passes through a pipe." The explanation went on that Jesus was an original creation having nothing to do with Mary or anyone else--almost an outside creation idea. That's how far some would go to be against the Latin Catholic Church, which is the starting point of rejection for many Protestant bodies.

But nothing here gives us the right to call them "unenlightened."

Bob

Bob


Problems that exist and need to be overcome in the Catholic Church also describe them when it is necessary (but they must be resolved in the Church - as Joseph Ratzinger recently said, the solution of founding other churches has been tried in the past, is not a real solution - it did not work, no Christian can say today that everything is wonderful in its denomination) and so I also try to observe and describe things that I see in other denominations. I do not see triumphalism in this (but yes, "enlightened" it may be an inappropriate term depending on the occasion).

But anyway, okay, I'll reflect your guidance, you have more experience than me; I am only a young man with love inflamed by the Church and I also need advice.

Originally Posted by Irish_Ruthenian
It is not being judgmental or triumphalist to use the word "enlightened." What does enlightened mean? It is a way of saying that someone has come into a place of deeper knowledge, or has "seen the light," as one might say. The fact is (and perhaps this is part of the attitude problem I have been accused of having) that Protestant pastors, and especially those in Fundamentalist assemblies, deliberately keep their congregation from knowing about the early history of the Church. To do so would cause massive problems, thus, they are kept in the dark - i.e., without light, or unenlightened.

Can you believe that I was 50 years old, had been in Protestantism for 25 years, and very dedicated at that, and when I encountered knowledgeable Catholics on the Internet, it was the first time I had even heard of men like St. Ignatius, Polycarp, St. Irenaeus, etc? I remember one former Methodist pastor who, on a Catholic convert board, told us that in 4 years of seminary study leading to his ordination, he heard exactly NO - that's ZERO, ZIP, NADA, ZILCH - quotes from the Early Fathers of the Church. That, my friends, is not education. That is brainwashing, pure and simple.

The simple fact is that there are people who are 'unenlightened" because they have not been taught. It is not a pejorative, it is simply a statement of fact. They don't know because they have not been taught. Deliberately. Yet many of them have a deep love for Christ within the paradigm they have been given. And when they convert - they make super Orthodox and Catholics!
'


Exactly. Thank you for your testimony. I have already noted this, Christians of some Protestant denominations are shocked when they discover that ancient Christians with proven orthodoxy were quite Catholic. I think there can only be dialogue with anyone who wants to dialogue.

Originally Posted by theophan
Christ is in our midst!!

What if we turn the tables? What chance would a Protestant have of engaging us in dialogue about this issue if he insisted that we were caught in the Devil's idolatry on this issue?

IMHO, none. So my point is that we need to avoid language that is inflammatory or derogatory if we wish to speak to our brethren who do not have the faith gift that we have. We still must recognize that the others have a deep love for Christ and are not afraid of publicly speaking of it--something that we in the Apostolic Churches seem not to do; it's not part of how we are taught to operate.

Bob


Oh, I've been called an idolator many times in dialogues, my remark has gone from there. If there was triumphalism, I believe it was not on my part (I was also trampled by sedevacantist Catholics, traditionalist "Thomists", only because I love Pope Francis and Ratzinger - someone who dialoged with Lutherans in particular, by the way).

"If the Church cannot cheat, then neither can man" (said the monsignor Luigi Giussani) - experience doesn’t deceive us.

Re: Protestantism and the Holy Theotokos [Re: Anaphora] #419339
06/26/19 10:14 PM
06/26/19 10:14 PM
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To try to bring this topic back to the basics:

Many Protestant hymnals include the hymn "Ye Watchers and Ye Holy Ones"

The second stanza is clearly addressed to the Theotokos and is closely based on the 9th Ode Tin teo....

Quote


2. O higher than the cherubim,
More glorious than the seraphim,
Lead their praises, Alleluia!
Thou Bearer of the eternal Word,
Most gracious, magnify the Lord,
Alleluia! Alleluia!
Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!


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