What view should Christians have
of Mary, Jesusí mother?
The Bible doesnít offer us much information about Mary, but her role in
Godís redemptive plan was unique.
Luke 1:26-56 records Maryís encounter with the angel Gabriel and her
visit with her relative Elizabeth. In chapter 2, we see her pondering
everything that has happened in connection with her sonís birth. In the
same chapter, Mary gently rebuked 12-year-old Jesus for causing Joseph
and her much concern by remaining behind in the Jerusalem temple instead
of joining the caravan back to Nazareth ( Luke 2:41-49 ).
Mary is mentioned again at the wedding feast in Cana of Galilee when
Jesus performed His first public miracle ( John 2:1-12 ). She appears a
few times after this in connection with our Lordís brothers and sisters(
Matthew 13:54-58 ; Mark 3:31-35; 6:1-6 ). When Jesus hung on the cross,
He looked down and tenderly said, "Dear woman, here is your son!" ( John
19:26 ), assigning her to the care of the apostle John. The last mention
of her is found in Acts 1:14 , where she is referred to as "Mary the
mother of Jesus."
Mary was a remarkable person. The angel who came to Mary with the
announcement that she would bear the Son of God said that she had "found
favor with God" ( Luke 1:30 ). God honored her above all other women by
choosing her to become the virgin mother of the Messiah. However, the
biblical accounts do not emphasize her role as the mother of Jesus. In
fact, nowhere in the Gospels does Jesus even call her "mother."
Although the Gospels portray her motherly concern, they clearly show her
subordination to her son. In John 2:4 , Jesus called her "woman" (which
wasnít as harsh an expression in Greek as it would be in modern
English), apparently to gently show her that His relationship to her as
Savior must take precedence over that of son.
The Bible nowhere refers to her as the mother of God or implies in any
way that she was born without sin. In fact, she herself recognized her
need of a Savior ( Luke 1:47 ). She was qualified to give birth to the
sinless Son of God because God chose her and miraculously caused her to
conceive by the "overshadowing" of the Holy Spirit( Luke 1:35 ). While
it is right to honor her as the mother of Jesus Christ, there are no
biblical grounds for placing her in a position of mediation between
ourselves and our Lord. The Scriptures declare:
There is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ
Jesus (1 Timothy 2:5).
Written by: Dan Vander Lugt
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