The Instigator
Maryland_Kid
Pro (for)
Losing
1 Points
The Contender
aHughJassDude
Con (against)
Winning
3 Points

The Catholics have the ideas about Mary wrong

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
aHughJassDude
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/23/2013 Category: Religion
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,406 times Debate No: 34102
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (1)
Votes (1)

 

Maryland_Kid

Pro

Catholics believe Mary is holy and the subject of preaching, intercedes for us, and worship. This is putting a mere human into a God. There is only one God. Mary admitted she needed to be saved. http://www.ewtn.com... http://www.marian.org... (Luke 1:47 (Exodus 20:4-5) (1 Timothy 2:5) (Matthew 10:4)

http://www.gotquestions.org...
http://carm.org...

Catholics believe that Mary did not sin. However, scripture teaches that all men have sinned. (Romans 3:23) http://www.vatican.va...
aHughJassDude

Con

I would like to accept this debate and to discuss with Maryland_kid whether or not the Catholic's beliefs/doctrine regarding Mary (the mother of Jesus Christ). I would first like to confirm that we are in fact talking about Mary, the woman in the Gospel of Luke who conceived a child while remaining a virgin.

I also would like to confirm that we are talking about the Roman Catholic Church whose doctrine is expressed in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

Thank you.
Debate Round No. 1
Maryland_Kid

Pro

Both are correct.
aHughJassDude

Con

I apologize for not using round one to its fullest potential and for taking so long to respond. The nuances of using this forum are still beyond me. I will take full advantage of this round.

First I would like to cover exactly what it is that Catholics believe in regards to Mary, confirming or disputing the statements you have already put forward.

"Catholics believe that Mary is holy""

This is true. The Catholic Church teaches that Mary is holy, but also that she maintains a unique holiness and not a holiness that is greater than that of other holy men and women. (CCC 492) Catholics maintain that it must be this way in order to truly fulfill the Old Covenant. In the Old Covenant the "Word of God" was kept inside of the Ark of the Covenant on sacred tablets of stone which are the Ten Commandments of God given to Moses on Mount Sinai. Jesus is recognized as the "Word made flesh" (John 1:14) and Catholics recognize Mary as the new Ark, participating in the fulfillment of the Old Covenant by carrying the "Word" inside of herself. Like the Ark, Mary is holy and pure, but we will discuss her purity later.

""and the subject of preaching""

I am confused by this point. Does this mean that they feel the need to preach about her? If so, then please see (CCC 487) which states that the Church"s teachings about Mary illuminate what it teaches about Christ.

""intercedes for us""

I would like you to expound on this point more. What is wrong with Mary, who gave birth to Christ and whose maternal nature allowed her a unique closeness to Christ, to pray to her Son on our behalf? Logic would dictate that Jesus would give a special attention to his own Mother. In addition, Jesus stated that God was a "God of the living, not the dead." (Mark 12:27) The living can communicate and they can pray to God. Therefore, it seems logical that any and all souls, both in heaven and on earth can "intercede" for us. Meaning they can speak to God on our behalf. Mary is not the exception.

". . . and worship. . ."

This is untrue. While Catholics pray to Mary, in a similar way that they pray to the Father or the Son, the understanding is that prayer is a form of communication. It is not exclusively a method of worship, although prayer to Jesus can be used in order to worship, praise, or adore God. Catholics believe that worship of Mary as a divinity, or any individual or object is a sin. (CCC 2112)

"This is putting a mere human into a god."

If Catholics worshipped Mary, then you would be correct. But since Catholics do not in fact worship Mary, excluding the actions of some individuals who may be misinformed or ignorant of the fact that it is a sin, this is not true and no person or thing is being made into God in the Catholic Church.

"Mary admitted she needed to be saved."

There are many ways that a person can be saved. I will use the infamous pit analogy to illustrate the what Mary meant when she referred to God as "my savior" (Luke 1:47). If you were walking in the woods with a friend and you came across a pit, but saw it too late, then your friend could save you from that pit in two different ways. First, they could pull you up out of the pit after you had fallen into it. Second, they could have caught you before you ever fell in, pulling you back from the edge. In both cases your friend saved you and was your savior. Mary"s recognition of God as her savior can speak to the fact that God saved her by preserving her from sin since the moment of her conception, shielding her from sin and preparing her for bearing the Christ.

"Catholics believe that Mary never sinned. However, scripture teaches that all men have sinned."

Catholics do believe that Mary never sinned. Paul does say that all men have sinned. (Romans 3:23) However, as Matt Slick put nicely in his article Have All People Sinned or Not? The exception is always Jesus. (1 Peter 2:22) Looking at these two contradictory statements one has to ask, does the bible contradict itself? Is Jesus really even a man then? Or maybe Paul was making a blanket statement to make a point? Catholics believe that Paul was trying to make a point and that this passage does not explicitly contradict the idea of Mary being sinless.

Catholics believe that all men, besides Jesus and Mary, have sinned. Mary, as mentioned before, is the New Ark of the Covenant. In addition to that, Mary is also recognized by the Church as the New Eve, in the same way Christ is the New David or the New Adam. While Eve"s one sin helped to bring about the Fall of Mankind, it was Mary"s lack of sin that points to Christ"s redemption of the world. It is fitting, being the New Ark and the New Eve that Mary would have been sinless and pure, providing a sinless human nature from which the Christ would be born.

However, the Catholic Church does NOT believe that it HAD to be this way. God is not limited to ceremony and the Salvation of the world was not entirely dependent upon Mary being sinless or being a virgin. However, the belief in Mary"s purity from sin and her perpetual virginity points to significance of the person she carried, NOT herself as a human being.
Debate Round No. 2
Maryland_Kid

Pro

First of all, praying to someone other than God is like making them God. There's no record of people in the Bible making prayers to Mary or Paul or Peter. Just pray to God. The Catholics use a strange verse in Revelations to rationalize this, but we don't know too much about it. It's better to not do something and be safe than sorry. I personally believe that the prayers of the saints are just the Christians in heaven and earth telling God to stop the persecution of Christians.

No Bible verse supports that Mary is any holier than anyone else. She was still a good person.

The idea of having icons of Mary and praying is easier to Mary than Jesus is worshiping her. https://www.youtube.com...

That verse does contradict Mary being sinless. She was completely a woman and not divine.

Also, Mary could not have been a virgin all her life because Jesus had siblings. They could not have been his cousins (the word in Greek usually means brother) and it couldn't have been Joseph's children from a previous marriage because they are not mentioned in their trips to Egypt. It says Joseph didn't "know" Mary until she gave birth to Jesus. The word "to know" in the Bible means to have sexual intercourse. http://www.gotquestions.org...
aHughJassDude

Con

""praying to someone other than God is like making them God."

Please define prayer. As I stated earlier, Catholics do not believe prayer to be exclusively worship, but rather a form of communication. To worship is to make someone or something a god and Catholics believe that.

"There"s no record of people in the Bible making prayers to Mary or Paul or Peter."

There is not any place in the Bible where anyone make prayers to Mary, Paul, or Peter specifically. I will however discuss Revelations 5:8 which you mentioned because I do not think that your friend in the video justly analyzed the Catholic argument as for why prayers can be made "through" the saints. The argument is that multiple prayers were coming from multiple people, "God"s people", and that these prayers were given to Jesus the Lamb according to the literal translation of the verse. Protestants often quote 1 Timothy 2:5 which states that Jesus is the only mediator between God and man and claim that the Catholic teaching in intercessory prayer violates this commandment. The 4 creatures however are bringing the prayers of "God"s people" to Jesus in this verse demonstrating that creatures may bring forth prayers TO JESUS who then acts as the mediator to the Father. Catholics believe that Mary and the saints are indeed men and women, and creatures of God, but that they too may bring prayers before Jesus like the 4 creatures. Jesus still remains as the only mediator between earthly men and women, as well as those who are in heaven. The statement that there is no record in the Bible of anyone making prayers to Mary, Paul, or Peter is irrelevant, for neither does it ever make mention of anyone making prayers to the 4 creatures who somehow received them. Were the 4 creatures omnipotent or omniscient? Why didn"t Jesus already have all of the prayer if he alone could receive them? Why were the 4 creatures necessary? Catholics would argue that it is for the sake of the faithful that the 4 creatures brought their prayer before God, as do the saints and Mary.

"No Bible verse supports that Mary is any holier than anyone else."

Luke 1:28 - also, the phrase "full of grace" is translated from the Greek word "kecharitomene." This is a unique title given to Mary, and suggests a perfection of grace from a past event. Mary is not just "highly favored." She has been perfected in grace by God. "Full of grace" is only used to describe one other person - Jesus Christ in John 1:14 and in Sirach where it appears that Mary"s conception of Jesus is being prophesized. "Lo, is not a word better than a gift? but both are with a justified man." (The word in Greek for "justified man" is the same "kecharitomene.") While this does not point to Mary as being "holier" than anyone else by any act or doing of her own, but that she was chosen by God and preserved from sin. "Full of grace" or "justified man" can be used to communicate this because, while "justified man" as the selected English translation is used elsewhere in the Bible, the Greek word itself is used exclusively in Luke and in this one passage in Sirach, which speaks of God"s mercy and is a foreshadowing of Christ"s coming.

"The idea of having icons of Mary and praying is easier to Mary than Jesus is worshiping her."

"When the dead rise, they will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like angels in heaven." (Mark 12:26) Praying in front of icons or while looking at icons is like looking at the cross while praying to Jesus. Protestants are not worshipping the bible of the cross when they hold either one close to their chest or while they look upon either. Rather, they are appreciating and acknowledging the great work that God has done through, not these specific objects, but what they are images of. Icons of Mary or the saints are treated by Catholics in the same way in that they are used to acknowledge or appreciate the work of God through their images, but not their images specifically or even the saints or Mary themselves. They are prayer tools. Not idols.

"That verse does contradict Mary being sinless. She was completely a woman and not divine."

Catholics do not deny that she was completely a woman and that she lacked divinity. What Catholics believe is that she was a woman, preserved from sin, by the grace of God alone. She is no goddess. If the verse does contradict Mary being sinless, then it also must contradict Jesus being sinless. If all men are sinners than so is Christ, unless Christ was no man. Logic dictates that this is necessarily so if Paul"s statement is to be taken literally.

"Also, Mary could not have been a virgin all her life because Jesus had siblings. They could not have been his cousins (the word in Greek usually means brother) and it couldn't have been Joseph's children from a previous marriage because they are not mentioned in their trips to Egypt."

This argument is founded on the fact that the Greek word for brother is not the same as the word for cousin. However, there was no Hebrew word for "cousin". They used the word brother, and the Greeks translating much of the Hebrew were obliged to use the word that the Greek word for brother whenever they encountered it in order to have an accurate translation. So it is irrelevant if there is a Greek word for cousin, because the Hebrew is what was using the term "brother" synonymously with "cousin" or "someone related to you". In addition, I would beg the question, where in the bible does it state that brother ever means uterine brother or blood brother?

"It says Joseph didn't "know" Mary until she gave birth to Jesus. The word "to know" in the Bible means to have sexual intercourse."

The key word here is not "know", which Catholics recognize implies sexual intercourse, but "until". In Matthew 28:20 Jesus says that he will "be with you until the end of the age". Does this mean that Jesus will stop being with us after the end of the age? Again, in 2nd Peter 1:19 it says "We also have the prophetic message as something completely reliable, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts." Is Peter suggesting that one should cease paying attention to the "reliable, prophetic message" once the day dawns? Obviously not. He is indicating a period of time during which an action is directed to occur, without suggesting any change later. "Until" can have two interpretations, it can be used to mean "change occurred after" or it can mean "before". In Matthew 28:20 and 2 Peter 1:19 the word "until" clearly means "before".

Let us examine Matthew 1:24-25 more. "When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. But he did not consummate their marriage until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus." Matthew"s goal here is to show how Jesus" birth fulfilled the prophecy of the Old Testament, 1) that a virgin conceived and 2) that a virgin bore a son. Read the passage again, but replace some of the 25th verse with the literal translation that man Protestants suggest. It would read,

"When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. He had intercourse with her after she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus."

Clearly that one sentence jumps out as both irrelevant to the context of the passage and out of place. Why would Matthew even mention it? He is in the middle of describing how the prophecy is being fulfilled and his key points are the virginal conception and birth of Jesus. Therefore, it makes much more sense in the context of the passage that he make the point that Joseph did not "know" Mary at any time "before" she gave birth to Jesus. That is all that is being stated in the passage. It does not imply a change afterwards in the same way that 2 Peter 1:19 and Matthew 28:20 do not imply a change.
Debate Round No. 3
Maryland_Kid

Pro

1) Praying to Mary and the Saints
I'll have to repeat myself on the Revelations verse. We really don't have any evidence of what the prayers are so why should we make a doctrine of it? The verse does not imply that the elders or the creatures interceded between God and man or opened the scroll. Again, the verse in 1 Timothy 2:5 say ONLY Jesus is the mediator. That leaves no room for anyone else. Making a doctrine out of something so obscure is wrong.

2) Icons Of Mary
Whether they consider Mary a God or not, she should not be the focus of prayer or mediation. It is a sin to bow down to Mary like the other nations mentioned in this article: http://carm.org...

3) Mary being Holy and Sinless
Yes, Mary was a great person. She was fully human, which we can deduce that she did sin. Those words don't make her sinless. (Romans 3:23) http://www.biblegateway.com... Abraham was justified by seeing the Gospel but he sinned. (Galations 3:6) http://biblehub.com...

4) Jesus having siblings
The verse mentioned that Jesus belonged to his mother and father, Joseph and Mary in addition to his brothers. This means that they were also his sons and her sons. The prophecy in Psalms proves that Jesus had brothers. http://carm.org...

5) Mary's virginity
When it means until it means the condition of virginity ended. It is the context because they wanted to consummate the marriage after Jesus was born. http://carm.org...
aHughJassDude

Con

"We don"t have any evidence of what the prayers are so why should we make a doctrine of it?"

I acknowledged your argument the first time. I will now repeat myself and say that this verse does support the doctrine of prayer coming to JESUS the Son, who then acts as the mediator between God and man. I will also state that this is NOT necessary, but it is prudent and beneficial to communicate with the Son via those already fully with Him in paradise. Catholics do not make doctrine based solely upon the Bible, to do so is in itself unbiblical for not everything that Jesus did and taught is in the Bible. Since the belief in prayer does not directly contradict the Bible- I have already shown how it does not contradict 1 Timothy 2:5- it can be accepted as doctrine if it can be found in Sacred Tradition.

""she should not be the focus of prayer or mediation. It is a sin to bow down to Mary like the other nations mentioned in this article"

Mary is a creature and creation of God. The Bible is a creation of God. The cross is a creation of God. Yet Protestants treat these things as holy in of themselves, they mediate and pray to God while looking upon the cross, or while lifting their hand and eyes toward the sky. Are they worshipping the Bible, the cross, or even the sky? NO. Neither are Catholics when they kneel and look upon an image of Mary or the saints. They are looking to God, through these images which help them to better see God"s great glory and works.

"She was fully human, which we can deduce that she did sin."

This is an assumption. How can you deduce this? What facts are you using? I have already shown how Romans 3:23 does not prove that Mary sinned.

"Abraham was justified by seeing the Gospel but he sinned. (Galations 3:6)"
Abraham didn"t give birth to the Living God.

"The verse mentioned that Jesus belonged to his mother and father, Joseph and Mary in addition to his brothers. This means that they were also his sons and her sons."

This is another assumption and does not address the objection that I brought up earlier. I have already shown how this is not necessarily the case.

"The prophecy in Psalms proves that Jesus had brothers."

I argued against this point. Stating the opposite without an actual reason or argument does not prove or disprove anything.

"When it means until it means the condition of virginity ended."

And when Christ says he will be with us until the end of the age he also means that the end of the age is when he will no longer be with us. Please give a reason for your assumption.

"It is the context because they wanted to consummate the marriage after Jesus was born. "

It is irrelevant what they wanted. What is relevant is what Matthew is trying to communicate and Joseph and Mary having relations is not part of that message. Your conclusion doesn't follow nor actually address my argument.
Debate Round No. 4
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Maryland_Kid 3 years ago
Maryland_Kid
What???!!! I'm losing? Are most people here Catholics?
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by larztheloser 3 years ago
larztheloser
Maryland_KidaHughJassDudeTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:13 
Reasons for voting decision: This debate was OK in that it touched the right subjects, but very much lacking in structure on both sides. Pro had BOP and for some reason made no argument in rounds 1 or 2 (other than citing a whole bunch of sources). This was a mistake. It allowed con to seize an opportunity to attack. While pro did have some attacks on con's argument, I didn't feel that these were substantive enough to form a constructive case for why Catholics are wrong, especially compared to the weight of con's counter-analysis. Pro could well be RIGHT, but would have strongly improved their argument with detailing their case further and introducing a clear structure. Con needs to work on structure as well, as his point for point style doesn't really hold when pro has only, say, one point and doesn't expand on it. I would have separated out constructive material, numbered points and used headings. Notwithstanding pro's failure of BOP, however, I felt con's case itself was fine. 3:1 neg win.