14 December, 2006

A Conversation With Michael

A friendly conversation revolving around the topic of Mary quickly reached new lows with the following comment by a concerned Christian:

...I need to know what exactly you've been smoking... because I need some of that!

First and foremost, I believe that you are the one that grossly misunderstands who Christ is and who is Mother is. How dare you attack your heavenly mother in such a way, would you dare to say something about your earthly mother like that?

From the beggining of time Christ was already created, he is in fact if you understand the trinity, he is the second person in one GOD, therefore when he was born to a VIRGIN, that is Mother Mary, he became man, but he was still God. What you are spouting is a Heresy that has already been crushed by the 4th lateran Council.

Do you honestly think that God would be born of an unclean person? Can you really think that, that he would come in a dirty vessel? NO, Christ was born to a VIRGIN that was sin-free as we are told in the bible. Also Christ was Mary's only child, meaning that she had no others nor did she have relations with Joseph.

All throughout the bible we are told about Mother mary, Heck God the father prophecies her coming in Genesis, when he says to the serpent that a woman will come and crush your head. What did he mean by that? He meant that a woman would bear the savior that the world was waiting on, and by her answer yes to Gabriel the arch-angel, and by giving birth she was going to crush the head of Satan, and then when Christ was crucified, he finished that and the gates of Heaven were opened.

Oh and just in case you forgot, you left out one of the most important passages of the bible... maybe it slipped your memory.. Remember when Christ was dying on the Cross, he said to John his faithful apostle who stayed there with him... He looked at his Mother and said" Woman behold thy son, and then looking at John, he said, Son behold thy mother. Why is this important? Because Christ was telling her to take care of his apostles and all the Christian people while he was gone, and he was telling the apostles and all the Christian people to love and revere his mother.

Oh and you also seem to think that Jesus was a sinner like the rest of us... that is heresy as well. Jesus was without sin, after all he was the son of GOD. AND more importantly he was tempted by the devil ect... and each time he resisted him and never fail like frail humans like ourselves.. when he says come and follow me, he is saying live by my example, sin no more.

So jason, put aside your heretical beliefs that you were raised in and that you've obviously been brainwashed in. Mother Mary isn't just Jesus's mother or the Mother of the Catholic church, she is yours as well, and the sooner you realize this, the sooner you'll learn to love her as I do.

Pax Christi,



This was soon followed by "I will unleash the verses and ect that will prove against your arguments... That is if you have the eyes left to see them!"

Michael will now present verse after verse after verse proving the exalted nature of Mary and why Christians around the world should be following in her footsteps instead of Christ's.


Blogger Moneybags said...

Jason, I'm glad you created this. While I love discussion on my blog, it was beginning to stray from the original topic of the Immaculate Conception. I hope you will one day see the truth of the One Catholic Faith.

Michael, I'm cheering you on!

December 14, 2006 10:31 AM  
Blogger St. Michael the Archangel said...

This is a great idea Jason, thanks for the link! I am unfortunately at work again... so as soon as I get home, around 5ish EST I will give you what you ask for.. beware its not for the faint of heart!

December 14, 2006 12:24 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

I've got the respirator on standby.

December 14, 2006 12:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't wait to see him try and prove from scripture that Jesus had no siblings...

December 14, 2006 5:33 PM  
Blogger St. Michael the Archangel said...

This is kinda funny, you changed the orgins of your site today to make me look like a villain, without ever putting your shameful words that you spouted on Moneybags site.. That is fine... I can see how your going to play this game already.

December 14, 2006 10:13 PM  
Blogger St. Michael the Archangel said...

Anonymous: Since you seem to want to hear about Jesus's supposed siblings... I'll humor you. I am taking this straight from my blog. This isn't all my work, but I think you will get the picture if you open your bible and compare it to this:

This is going to be a really long post. This is not my work, but it explains it way better than I ever could. If you study the texts from the bible, you will see that in fact Jesus did not have brothers or sisters as many Protestants claim.

A group of persons closely connected with the Saviour appears repeatedly in the New Testament under the designation "his brethren" or "the brethren of the Lord" (Matthew 12:46, 13:55; Mark 3:31-32, 6:3; Luke 8:19-20; John 2:12, 7:3-5; Acts 1:14; 1 Corinthians 9:5). Four such "brethren" are mentioned by name in the parallel texts of Matt 13:55 and Mark 6:3 (where "sisters" are also referred to), namely, James (also mentioned Galatians 1:19), Joseph, or Joses, Simon, and Jude; the incidental manner in which these names are given, shows, however, that the list lays no claim to completeness.

Two questions in connexion with these "brethren" of the Lord have long been, and are still now more than ever, the subject of controversy: (1) The identity of James, Jude, and Simon; (2) the exact nature of the relationship between the Saviour and his "brethren".

(1) The identity of James, Jude and Simon. James is without doubt the Bishop of Jerusalem (Acts 12:17, 15:13, 21:18; Galatians 1:19; 2:9-12) and the author of the first Catholic Epistle. His identity with James the Less (Mark 15:40) and the Apostle James, the son of Alpheus (Matthew 10:3; Mark 3:18), although contested by many Protestant critics, may also be considered as certain. There is no reasonable doubt that in Galatians 1:19: "But other of the apostles [besides Cephas] I saw none, saving James the brother of the Lord", St. Paul represents James as a member of the Apostolic college. The purpose for which the statement is made, makes it clear that the "apostles" is to be taken strictly to designate the Twelve, and its truthfulness demands that the clause "saving James" be understood to mean, that in addition to Cephas, St. Paul saw another Apostle, "James the brother of the Lord" (cf. Acts 9:27). Besides, the prominence and authority of James among the Apostles (Acts 15:13; Galatians 2:9; in the latter text he is even named before Cephas) could have belonged only to one of their number. Now there were only two Apostles named James: James the son of Zebedee, and James the son of Alpheus (Matthew 10:3; Mark 3:18; Luke 6:16; Acts 1:13). The former is out of the question, since he was dead at the time of the events to which Acts 15:6 ssq., and Galatians 2:9-12 refer (cf. Acts 12:2). James "the brother of the Lord" is therefore one with James the son of Alpheus, and consequently with James the Less, the identity of these two being generally conceded. Again, on comparing John 19:25 with Matt 27:56, and Mark 15:40 (cf. Mark 15:47; 16:1), we find that Mary of Cleophas, or more correctly Clopas (Klopas), the sister of Mary the Mother of Christ, is the same as Mary the mother of James the Less and of Joseph, or Joses. As married women are not distinguished by the addition of their father's name, Mary of Clopas must be the wife of Clopas, and not his daughter, as has been maintained. Moreover, the names of her sons and the order in which they are given, no doubt the order of seniority, warrant us in identifying these sons with James and Joseph, or Joses, the "brethren" of the Lord. The existence among the early followers of Christ of two sets of brothers having the same names in the order of age, is not likely, and cannot be assumed without proof. Once this identity is conceded, the conclusion cannot well be avoided that Clopas and Alpheus are one person, even if the two names are quite distinct. It is, however, highly probable, and commonly admitted, that Clopas and Alpheus are merely different transcriptions of the same Aramaic word Halphai. James and Joseph the "brethren" of the Lord are thus the sons of Alpheus.

Of Joseph nothing further is known. Jude is the writer of the last of the Catholic Epistles (Jude 1). He is with good reason identified by Catholic commentators with the "Judas Jacobi" ("Jude the brother of James" in the Douay Version) of Luke 6:16 and Acts 1:13, otherwise known as Thaddeus (Matthew 10:3; Mark 3:18). It is quite in accordance with Greek custom for a man to be distinguished by the addition of his brother's name instead of his father's, when the brother was better known. That such was the case with Jude is inferred from the title "the brother of James", by which he designates himself in his Epistle. About Simon nothing certain can be stated. He is identified by most commentators with the Symeon, or Simon, who, according to Hegesippus, was a son of Clopas, and succeeded James as Bishop of Jerusalem. Some identify him with the Apostle Simon the Cananean (Matthew 10:4; Mark 3:18) or the Zealot (Luke 6:15; Acts 1:13). The grouping together of James, Jude or Thaddeus, and Simon, after the other Apostles, Judas Iscariot excepted, in the lists of the Apostles, (Matthew 10:4-5; Mark 3:18; Luke 6:16; Acts 1:13) lends some probability to this view, as it seems to indicate some sort of connexion between the three. Be this as it may, it is certain that at least two of the "brethren" of Christ were among the Apostles. This is clearly implied in 1 Cor 9:5: "Have we not the power to carry about a woman, a sister, as well as the rest of the apostles, and the brethren of the Lord, and Cephas?" The mention of Cephas at the end indicates that St. Paul, after speaking of the Apostles in general, calls special attention to the more prominent ones, the "brethren" of the Lord and Cephas. The objection that no "brethren" of the Lord could have been members of the Apostolic college, because six months before Christ's death they did not believe in Him (John 7:3-5), rests on a misunderstanding of the text. His "brethren" believed in his miraculous power, and urged him to manifest it to the world. Their unbelief was therefore relative. It was not a want of belief in His Messiahship, but a false conception of it. They had not yet rid themselves of the Jewish idea of a Messiah who would be a temporal ruler. We meet with this idea among the Apostles as late as the day of the Ascension (Acts 1:6). In any case the expression "his brethren" does not necessarily include each and every "brother", whenever it occurs. This last remark also sufficiently answers the difficulty in Acts 1:13-14, where, it is said, a clear distinction is made between the Apostles and the "brethren" of the Lord.

(2) The exact nature of the relationship between the Saviour and his "brethren". The texts cited at the beginning of this article show beyond a doubt that there existed a real and near kinship between Jesus and His "brethren". But as "brethren" (or "brother") is applied to step-brothers as well as to brothers by blood, and in Scriptural, and Semitic use generally, is often loosely extended to all near, or even distant, relatives (Genesis 13:8, 14:14-16; Leviticus 10:4; 1 Chronicles 15:5-10, 23:21-22), the word furnishes no certain indication of the exact nature of the relationship. Some ancient heretics, like Helvidius and the Antidicomarianites, maintained that the "brethren" of Jesus were His uterine brothers the sons of Joseph and Mary. This opinion has been revived in modern times, and is now adopted by most of the Protestant exegetes. On the orthodox side two views have long been current. The majority of the Greek Fathers and Greek writers, influenced, it seems, by the legendary tales of apocryphal gospels, considered the "brethren" of the Lord as sons of St. Joseph by a first marriage. The Latins, on the contrary, with few exceptions (St. Ambrose, St. Hilary, and St. Gregory of Tours among the Fathers), hold that they were the Lord's cousins. That they were not the sons of Joseph and Mary is proved by the following reasons, leaving out of consideration the great antiquity of the belief in the perpetual virginity of Mary. It is highly significant that throughout the New Testament Mary appears as the Mother of Jesus and of Jesus alone. This is the more remarkable as she is repeatedly mentioned in connexion with her supposed sons, and, in some cases at least, it would have been quite natural to call them her sons (cf. Matthew 12:46; Mark 3:31; Luke 8:19; Acts 1:14). Again, Mary's annual pilgrimage to Jerusalem (Luke 2:41) is quite incredible, except on the supposition that she bore no other children besides Jesus. Is it likely that she could have made the journey regularly, at a time when the burden of child-bearing and the care of an increasing number of small children (she would be the mother of at least four other sons and of several daughters, cf Matthew 13:56) would be pressing heavily upon her? A further proof is the fact that at His death Jesus recommended His mother to St. John. Is not His solicitude for her in His dying hour a sign that she would be left with no one whose duty it would be to care for her? And why recommend her to an outsider if she had other sons? Since there was no estrangement between Him and His "brethren", or between them and Mary, no plausible argument is confirmed by the words with which he recommends her: ide ho uios sou, with the article before uios (son); had there been others sons, ide uios sou, without the article, would have been the proper expression.

The decisive proof, however, is that the father and mother of at least two of these "brethren" are known to us. James and Joseph, or Joses, are, as we have seen, the sons of Alpheus, or Clopas, and of Mary, the sister of Mary the Mother of Jesus, and all agree that if these are not brothers of the Saviour, the others are not. This last argument disposes also of the theory that the "brethren" of the Lord were the sons of St. Joseph by a former marriage. They are then neither the brothers nor the step-brothers of the Lord. James, Joseph, and Jude are undoubtedly His cousins. If Simon is the same as the Symeon of Hegesippus, he also is a cousin, since this writer expressly states that he was the son of Clopas the uncle of the Lord, and the latter's cousin. But whether they were cousins on their father's or mother's side, whether cousins by blood or merely by marriage, cannot be determined with certainty. Mary of Clopas is indeed called the "sister" of the Blessed Virgin (John 19:25), but it is uncertain whether "sister" here means a true sister or a sister-in-law. Hegesippus calls Clopas the brother of St. Joseph. This would favour the view that Mary of Clopas was only the sister-in-law of the Blessed Virgin, unless it be true, as stated in the MSS. of the Peshitta version, that Joseph and Clopas married sisters. The relationship of the other "brethren" may have been more distant than that of the above named four.

The chief objection against the Catholic position is taken from Matt 1:25: "He [Joseph] knew her not till she brought forth her firstborn son"; and from Luke 2:7: "And she brought forth her firstborn son". Hence, it is argued, Mary must have born other children. "Firstborn" (prototokos), however, does not necessarily connote that other children were born afterwards. This is evident from Luke 2:23, and Ex 13:2-12 (cf. Greek text) to which Luke refers. "Opening the womb" is there given as the equivalent of "firstborn" (prototokos). An only child was thus no less "firstborn" than the first of many. Neither do the words "he knew her not till she brought forth" imply, as St. Jerome proves conclusively against Helvidius from parallel examples, that he knew her afterwards. The meaning of both expressions becomes clear, if they are considered in connexion with the virginal birth related by the two Evangelists.

December 14, 2006 10:21 PM  
Blogger St. Michael the Archangel said...

On Mother Mary's Immaculate Conception and why she was sin free as was Christ:

Theotokos is Greek and it's meaning is 'GOD Bearer'. And who is the 'GOD Bearer'? Mary, the Mother of GOD. Who else bore GOD? This is shown in John 1:1, "...and the Word was GOD", and in John 1:14, "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us." So the Word, who was GOD, was made flesh. Where did the substance of the flesh come from? It came from the substance of Mary. Could the substance of the flesh and blood of Jesus Christ come from a person stained by original sin?
Mothers give birth to persons, not natures. The person of Jesus Christ is divine, not human. Mary gave birth to a divine person. That makes her the 'Theotokos', the 'GOD Bearer', the 'Mother of GOD'.

In Luke 1:41-43, '...Elizabeth, being filled with the Holy Spirit, cried out with a loud voice, saying, "Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb! And how have I deserved that the MOTHER OF MY LORD should come to me?'"

Elizabeth, filled with the Holy Spirit, called Mary the 'Mother of my Lord'. Since being 'filled with the Holy Spirit' means the same throughout the Bible, then it was the Holy Spirit who gave her the words to say, isn't that true?
"And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in foreign tongues, even as the Holy Spirit prompted them to speak," Acts 2:4.

Who is 'my Lord', is it not GOD? Did she then not call Mary, the 'MOTHER OF GOD'? If that is what she said, then the Holy Spirit called Mary the 'Mother of GOD' did He not? If you say 'no' to these questions in this paragraph, then please explain your reason(s) why to me.

If the third person of the Holy Trinity called Mary the 'Mother of GOD', would any one of us dare to deny it?

Can the 'Mother of GOD' have original sin on her soul?

The doctrine of Mary, the 'Mother of GOD' was first proclaimed by the Church at the Council of Ephesus in 431.

I will ask you, 'Will GOD join Himself to anything defiled'?

Original sin can be seen as a disease of the soul and can be handled two ways. It can be cleansed away by Baptism, the cure, or it can be prevented by the grace of GOD. This preventative way is what we Catholics believe was bestowed upon Mary.
When conception occurs, GOD creates the soul for the one conceived. It was a simple matter for the Creator of the Universe to prevent original sin from staining the human soul of Jesus Christ, and He no doubt, did the same thing for Mary when she was conceived.
Isaiah 64:8, "And now, O Lord, Thou art Our Father, and we are clay; and Thou art our maker, and we all are the works of Thy hands."
Jeremiah 18:4-6, "And the vessel was broke which he was making of clay with his hands; and turning he made another vessel, as it seemed good in his eyes to make it. Then the Word of the Lord came to me saying: 'Cannot I do with you as this potter, O house of Israel, said the Lord? Behold as clay is in the hand of the potter, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel."

So GOD is the Potter, and we are the clay to mold as He sees fit.


The Potter and the Clay, and Romans 9:21 give Biblical justification to the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception.

December 14, 2006 10:37 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

No, you’re not a villain, just…overly exuberant (the original post can be read here).

Anyhow, that was quite the exposé!!! I know you put some work into writing all that but I’ll be honest, I have no idea what the bulk of it meant. I have a suggestion: how about we start super simple and go from there.

Jesus’ brothers and sisters.
Matthew 12:46-48.
Jesus is standing in a large group of people. On the outskirts of the group are individuals referred to as “mother” and “brethren”. Someone in the group says to Jesus “Your mother and brethren are waiting over there. They want to talk to you.” Jesus looks at the crowd around him and says, “Who is my mother and who are my brethren”, after which he stretches out his hand, pointing at his disciples standing close by, and says, “Behold, my mother and brethren.”

It doesn't get much clearer then this. Jesus had literal brothers as much as he had a literal mother. The lesson being communicated here is that spiritual family trumps literal family. This is why Jesus can get away with including “mother” when pointing to his disciples. Since we know there were obviously no woman disciples, the power of Jesus’ comment was in showing that his entire family, mother included, was contained within the group of disciples.

Summary: Jesus had a literal mother and Jesus had literal brothers.

Mary’s ever-virgin status.
Again, the answer here is simple. Matthew 1:25 “He knew her not till…” In plain English: “He didn’t have sexual relations with her until…” Therefore, Mary was a virgin only UNTIL the birth of Christ.

The argument about whether or not Mary was a virgin should end here because it’s so obvious what is being said. Unfortunately, it’s never the case.

That being said, I would now love to hear your thoughts on what you believe this verse is really saying.

Summary: Jesus had literal brothers...for obvious reasons.

Jesus on the cross
The reference for this is: John 19:26-27 "When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son! Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home." The natural assumption by most is to read into this verse more then necessary. For example, for some inexplicable reason, Catholics will claim this is the moment when Mary become 'Mother of the Church'. However, like most things, it doesn't need to be this complicated. John, Mary and a few other women were the only ones at the cross. Everyone else had abandoned Christ. Joseph, it seems, was no longer on the scene (possibly dead?) so Christ, recognizing the need for Mary to be looked after spiritually (no husband and a family who left Jesus when he most needed them), commited her into the care of John, the disciple he loved. That's ALL we're told here. It is what it is.

December 15, 2006 12:45 AM  
Blogger Jason said...

Mary free from sin.

Again, I’m confused by what you’re saying and what you’re defending. Firstly, you start off by making statements and presenting ideas that aren't found in Scripture:

• Theotokos was a word conjured up 400 years after Christ. It has no relevance in this discussion.
• The substance of flesh came from Mary. Where exactly are we told this?
• God is unable to take on flesh from someone stained by original sin. What evidence can you offer that backs this up?

Then there are the points that contradict Scripture:

• The person of Jesus isn’t human. This is absolutely incorrect. Jesus was made “lower then the angels” (Heb 2:7). Jesus had the likeness of “sinful flesh” (Romans 8:3). Jesus was born “under the law” (Gal 4:4). God only exalted Jesus after his death (Phl 2:9). These verses make your claim that Jesus wasn’t human impossible.
• Elizabeth called Mary “Mother of God”. Incorrect. She called Mary “mother of my Lord” and that’s it. You’re wrong in that “Lord” must be “God”. “Lord” is simply a title for one who has authority. For example, in Matthew 13:27, the servants call their master “Sir”.
• The Trinity isn’t the discussion. We can chat about it here whenever you’re ready.
• Please provide a reference for the “Will God join Himself…” verse.

Needless to say, there is nothing here whatsoever that would lead anyone to believe Mary was a sinless, perfect being as a necessity to give birth to God.

December 15, 2006 1:35 AM  
Blogger Jason said...

Michael seems to have taken a hiatus. Building up for one final push, perhaps.

December 19, 2006 9:06 AM  
Blogger St. Michael the Archangel said...

Yes, I did take a hiatus. I apologize for not answering... I am just to stressed out right now. I will post an answer soon, hopefully before Christmas... when we celebrate the VIRGINAL birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.



December 20, 2006 6:46 AM  
Blogger Jason said...

lol I'm not arguing Mary wasn't a virgin when she gave birth to Jesus. Scripture makes it abundantly clear that this was the case. It's her 'ever-virgin' status that is absent from the pages of God's Word. As is the date and importance of celebrating Jesus' birth (e.g. December 25). Instead, God asks us to remember his death and resurrection through the partaking of the bread and wine, and this isn't something that's limited to once a year.

December 20, 2006 10:09 AM  
Blogger St. Michael the Archangel said...

So your also saying then that you also believe that Mary had a "virginal birth" meaning that she did not go through the same pains and process that a normal mother would have?

And yes, Christ did say to "do this in remembrance of me", regarding the Eucharist, But it is not just bread and wine, it of course is his body and blood, that is unless of course you do not fully understand Christs' words throughout the bible that explain transubstantiation.

And then as for December 25th. Here is an excerpt from newadvent.com

At Rome the earliest evidence is in the Philocalian Calendar (P. L., XIII, 675; it can be seen as a whole in J. Strzygowski, Kalenderbilder des Chron. von Jahre 354, Berlin, 1888), compiled in 354, which contains three important entries. In the civil calendar 25 December is marked "Natalis Invicti". In the "Depositio Martyrum" a list of Roman or early and universally venerated martyrs, under 25 December is found "VIII kal. ian. natus Christus in Betleem Iudeæ". On "VIII kal. mart." (22 February) is also mentioned St. Peter's Chair. In the list of consuls are four anomalous ecclesiastical entries: the birth and death days of Christ, the entry into Rome, and martyrdom of Saints Peter and Paul. The significant entry is "Chr. Cæsare et Paulo sat. XIII. hoc. cons. Dns. ihs. XPC natus est VIII Kal. ian. d. ven. luna XV," i.e. during the consulship of (Augustus) Cæsar and Paulus Our Lord Jesus Christ was born on the eighth before the calends of January (25 December), a Friday, the fourteenth day of the moon. The details clash with tradition and possibility. The epact, here XIII, is normally XI; the year is A.U.C. 754, a date first suggested two centuries later; in no year between 751 and 754 could 25 December fall on a Friday; tradition is constant in placing Christ's birth on Wednesday. Moreover the date given for Christ's death (duobus Geminis coss., i.e. A.D. 29) leaves Him only twenty eight, and one-quarter years of life. Apart from this, these entries in a consul list are manifest interpolations. But are not the two entries in the "Depositio Martyrum" also such? Were the day of Christ's birth in the flesh alone there found, it might stand as heading the year of martyrs' spiritual natales; but 22 February is there wholly out of place. Here, as in the consular fasti, popular feasts were later inserted for convenience' sake. The civil calendar alone was not added to, as it was useless after the abandonment of pagan festivals. So, even if the "Depositio Martyrum" dates, as is probable, from 336, it is not clear that the calendar contains evidence earlier than Philocalus himself, i.e. 354, unless indeed pre-existing popular celebration must be assumed to render possible this official recognition. Were the Chalki manuscript of Hippolytus genuine, evidence for the December feast would exist as early as c. 205. The relevant passage [which exists in the Chigi manuscript Without the bracketed words and is always so quoted before George Syncellus (c. 1000)] runs:

He gar prote parousia tou kyriou hemon he ensarkos [en he gegennetai] en Bethleem, egeneto [pro okto kalandon ianouarion hemera tetradi] Basileuontos Augoustou [tessarakoston kai deuteron etos, apo de Adam] pentakischiliosto kai pentakosiosto etei epathen de triakosto trito [pro okto kalandon aprilion, hemera paraskeun, oktokaidekato etei Tiberiou Kaisaros, hypateuontos Hrouphou kai Hroubellionos. -- (Comm. In Dan., iv, 23; Brotke; 19)
"For the first coming of Our Lord in the flesh [in which He has been begotten], in Bethlehem, took place [25 December, the fourth day] in the reign of Augustus [the forty-second year, and] in the year 5500 [from Adam]. And He suffered in His thirty-third year [25 March, the parasceve, in the eighteenth year of Tiberius Cæsar, during the consulate of Rufus and Rubellio]."

Interpolation is certain, and admitted by Funk, Bonwetsch, etc. The names of the consuls [which should be Fufius and Rubellius] are wrong; Christ lives thirty-three years; in the genuine Hippolytus, thirty-one; minute data are irrelevant in this discussion with Severian millenniarists; it is incredible that Hippolytus should have known these details when his contemporaries (Clement, Tertullian, etc.) are, when dealing with the matter, ignorant or silent; or should, having published them, have remained unquoted (Kellner, op. cit., p. 104, has an excursus on this passage.)

St. Ambrose (de virg., iii, 1 in P. L., XVI, 219) preserves the sermon preached by Pope Liberius I at St. Peter's, when, on Natalis Christi, Ambrose' sister, Marcellina, took the veil. This pope reigned from May, 352 until 366, except during his years of exile, 355-357. If Marcellina became a nun only after the canonical age of twenty-five, and if Ambrose was born only in 340, it is perhaps likelier that the event occurred after 357. Though the sermon abounds in references appropriate to the Epiphany (the marriage at Cana, the multiplication of loaves, etc.), these seem due (Kellner, op. cit., p. 109) to sequence of thought, and do not fix the sermon to 6 January, a feast unknown in Rome till much later. Usener, indeed, argues (p. 272) that Liberius preached it on that day in 353, instituting the Nativity feast in the December of the same year; but Philocalus warrants our supposing that if preceded his pontificate by some time, though Duchesne's relegation of it to 243 (Bull. crit., 1890, 3, pp. 41 sqq. ) may not commend itself to many. In the West the Council of Saragossa (380) still ignores 25 December (see can. xxi, 2). Pope Siricius, writing in 385 (P. L., XII, 1134) to Himerius in Spain, distinguishes the feasts of the Nativity and Apparition; but whether he refers to Roman or to Spanish use is not clear. Ammianus Marcellinus (XXI, ii) and Zonaras (Ann., XIII, 11) date a visit of Julian the Apostate to a church at Vienne in Gaul on Epiphany and Nativity respectively. Unless there were two visits, Vienne in A.D. 361 combined the feasts, though on what day is still doubtful. By the time of Jerome and Augustine, the December feast is established, though the latter (Epp., II, liv, 12, in P.L., XXXIII, 200) omits it from a list of first-class festivals. From the fourth century every Western calendar assigns it to 25 December. At Rome, then, the Nativity was celebrated on 25 December before 354; in the East, at Constantinople, not before 379, unless with Erbes, and against Gregory, we recognize it there in 330. Hence, almost universally has it been concluded that the new date reached the East from Rome by way of the Bosphorus during the great anti-Arian revival, and by means of the orthodox champions. De Santi (L'Orig. delle Fest. Nat., in Civiltæ Cattolica, 1907), following Erbes, argues that Rome took over the Eastern Epiphany, now with a definite Nativity colouring, and, with as increasing number of Eastern Churches, placed it on 25 December; later, both East and West divided their feast, leaving Ephiphany on 6 January, and Nativity on 25 December, respectively, and placing Christmas on 25 December and Epiphany on 6 January.

December 20, 2006 5:38 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

This is what I said: “I'm not arguing Mary wasn't a virgin when she gave birth to Jesus. Scripture makes it abundantly clear that this was the case” and this is all I said. Nothing about pains and processes here.

Tell you what, if you can prove through Scripture that Mary had a painless birth, then we’ll talk about it.

I’ve read the description of Christmas in the catholic encyclopedia and I find it interesting you completely left the first half of the entry out. Here’s what is says: “Christmas was not among the earliest festivals of the Church…the first evidence of the feast is from Egypt…”

Then we have a list of dates: May 20th, April 19th, March 28th. The sentence I like the best reads “…there is no month in the year to which respectable authorities have not assigned Christ's birth.” The fact of the matter is that even including the massive rambling quote you poured out here, there is nothing in the Bible or early Church history that even remotely hints at December 25th as Christ’s birthday. So how and why are you defending something that can't be proven?

If you can offer proof using Scripture that a) Jesus was born on December 25th and b) we're told to annually celebrate Christ’s birth, then we’ll talk about it.

But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Go back and refute my earlier points about Mary first because I’m really interested in what you have to say. And please, no more longwinded quotes from encyclopedias. Stick with the Bible.

December 20, 2006 6:25 PM  
Blogger St. Michael the Archangel said...

The Catholic Church is the bible, as the bible is the Catholic Church.. same goes with tradition, the bible is oral tradition that was passed down from elder to elder, and then over 400 years after Christ died, it was written into a bible. Therefore, tradition plays a huge part in the bible as we know it. The point I am making here is, just because it is not in the bible, doesn't mean that it is wrong or it isn't a "tradition" that has been practiced since the beggining. I shouldn't have you tell you these things, you should already know. And believe me, I have heard all your arguments against tradition... so don't even try to throw any at me. Christ taught tradition, as did his apostles, the bible and church as based on tradition, the jews practiced tradition. I know that you only believe what is written word in the bible, open your eyes, Christ spoke through tradition, as it was before the bible was written, and as it is now after Christ has died and the church continues to follow tradition. I know that you haven't touched on this subject yet, except for your bible comment.

The bible is not your main source of salvation, as you were taught to believe. Tradition plays an important part in your salvation.

December 20, 2006 11:21 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

No. The Catholic Church is NOT the Bible. This is absolutely wrong. Please note the vast difference between Church and Bible: One changes with the times, the other doesn’t. That’s more then enough to sever the two.

No one is saying tradition is irrelevant. But whose traditions are we talking about: Christ’s or man’s? The Christian “tradition” to which the New Testament refers, is that which was instituted by Christ himself. This “tradition” is always contrasted against “the traditions of men.” (I Corinthians 11:1-2, 25) The early Christian “tradition” was therefore (a) delivered by Christ himself, and (b) immutable, unlike the steadily-evolving “traditions of men” which were formulated in the first three centuries of the post-Apostolic era. Do Catholic traditions evolve? History proves they do.

Paul’s oral teachings – unlike the oral teachings of the men who led the post-1st Century Church – were not originally his own; they were Christ’s! Furthermore, those same oral teachings were always committed to parchment, not simply passed down through word of mouth (hence the Pauline letters, not the Pauline conversations). To drive the point home even further, these teachings were also recorded by other writers, appearing in the four Gospels, the book of Acts and the General Epistles. The apostles never place any weight on “oral tradition.” They instead draw their arguments from (a) the inspiration of God, and (b) the writings (as opposed to “oral traditions”) of other apostles.

Yours is a convenient safety statement: “Just because it’s not in the Bible doesn’t mean it’s wrong.” Think about how that sounds when contrasted with 2 Timothy 3:16-17 "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.”

Now, if the man of God may be perfect and throughly furnished unto ALL good works as the result of using Scripture for doctrine, reproof, correct and instruction in righteousness, then why would anyone, ever, for any reason, use something other then Scripture in an attempt to achieve the same thing? What you're talking about is God's Word not being good enough to achieve perfection. Think about it: The authority of Scripture, the validity of Scripture, the relevance of Scripture, the infallibility of Scripture, these are all without debate. No other book or teaching can claim the same.

Most people will now go to John 20:30 to prove the point that there were teachings that weren’t included in the Bible: “And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book:…” But look at what’s said next: “…But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.” What is WRITTEN in the Bible is there to give us BELIEF and to attain salvation.

This is why Scripture should be the only tool we ever go to to find answers. We will be “perfect” by doing so.

So, back to Mary's supposed ever-virgin status and the problem with Jesus having brothers...

December 21, 2006 1:28 AM  
Blogger St. Michael the Archangel said...

Ok, so I will touch on Mary and her ever-virgin status and as for his brothers "brethern" I have already given you a whole feed on that, explaining everything in detail, if that does not suffice, then you are too blind to understand it.. and in that case... you need a true teacher "Catholic Priest" to explain it to you, like that Ethiopian in the bible that needed someone to explain it to him, because he could not interpret it and understand it himself... hence this is just a good example of why individuals should not try to interpret and understand the bible all "alone".

December 21, 2006 7:03 AM  
Anonymous Lily said...

Wow. I've been reading this from day one... now I just HAVE to comment. Going back to this entry:

"The Catholic Church is the bible, as the bible is the Catholic Church.. same goes with tradition"

Michael, I can see your point about tradition and I absolutely hear where you’re coming from, but man, try to see that from inside that statement, you are way off. Dangerously so.

Why that statement is ABSOLUTELY false:

As has been pointed out the Bible does not contradict itself, it does NOT change. If we compare the Catholic Church in general before the Second Vatican Council to the modern day church today, we can see MANY differences (listed below).

Note: Obviously these differences vary parish to parish and all may not apply to all parishes, there is no doubt these changes are widespread. And for those who don’t know, the second Vatican council was the twenty-first Roman Catholic ecumenical council (to promote/foster Catholic unity, 1962–65) convened by Pope John XXIII. Its 16 documents redefined the nature of the church, gave bishops greater influence in church affairs, and increased lay participation in liturgy (public worship).

The Changing Face of the Catholic Church:

Traditional Church VS New Church (1969 and later) (Points 1-8)

1. Altar used VS Altar replaced with a table

2. Tabernacle kept on altar in center VS Tabernacle removed or moved to the side

3. Crucifix over the altar VS Crucifix potentially removed, and other pictures such as that of John Paul II are hung instead

4. Communion rail VS Communion rail removed

5. Little variations in churches across parishes VS Large variations across parishes

6. Liturgy (public worship) and sacraments consistent throughout the centuries VS Liturgy changed and validity of the sacraments now questionable

7. Tradition held sacred in every aspect VS Modernism now replaces tradition

8. Priests ordained with traditional rite VS Priest validity of ordination questionable due to changes in ordination rituals

Now, if we compare traditional Catholic Mass (before the Second Vatican Council) to the modern “new mass” that exists in churches today, all of the differences below have also been witnessed. Again, these differences may vary parish to parish and all do not apply to all parishes, but nevertheless, these changes are undeniably widespread:

Traditional Mass (followed since the earliest days of the Church) VS New Mass (1969 and later) (Points 9-24)

9. Mass was the solemn worship of God offered as a “sacrifice” for our sins VS Mass now more of a memorial, instructional service or meeting

10. Mass said in Latin for centuries VS Mass translated to English

11. Rituals & prayers untouched since the early days of the Church VS Rituals &
prayers changed or removed despite prior Popes' disapproval

12. Priest faces Our Lord in the Tabernacle VS Priest has his back to tabernacle (if there is a tabernacle)

13. Communion received on the tongue VS Communion received in the hand

14. Communion received kneeling VS Communion received standing

15. Communion distributed by priest only VS Communion distributed by anyone

16. Silence, reverence & devotion during Mass VS Talking and little devoutness during Mass

17. Priest reverent and restrained during Mass VS Priest very casual and frequently joking

18. Frequent signs of the cross & genuflections by priest and laity VS Far fewer signs of the cross & genuflections

19. No variations in Mass across parishes VS Large variations across parishes (ONE Church should have NO variation)

20. High Mass with incense VS No more high masses or use of incense

21. Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament VS Benediction completely changed or abolished

22. Altar boys only VS Altar girls

23. Only clergy and altar boys in sanctuary VS Anyone in the sanctuary

24. Traditional Canon of the mass intact. VS Words changed – true transubstantiation doubtful which likely makes the new mass no longer a true sacrifice.

Also interesting is that many of the changes to the Catholic Church that have occurred since the Second Vatican Council are similar to those changes proposed by Luther in the 16th century (many of which are seen in Protestant churches today). You’ll not doubt remember that Luther had a strong opposition to the wealth and corruption of the papacy and his belief that salvation would be granted on the basis of faith alone rather than by works, which of course caused his excommunication from the Catholic Church (1521).

So, many characteristics in today’s Catholic Church have similarities to Protestant churches. Since there were Protestant ministers involved with the “renewing” of the Catholic Church at the Second Vatican Council, this really comes as no surprise. How can this “new Catholic mass” and new doctrine, forbidden by prior Popes and forbidden throughout the history of the Church be true and pleasing to God in the eyes of Catholics now?

So which is right? The traditional mass or the new mass? If the traditional mass was right before Vatican II, then it is right now. If the new mass was wrong before Vatican II, then it is also wrong now.

Catholicism seems to be evolving to keep pace with the times and keep people in the seats. Good thing the bible hasn’t followed suit. As previously posted: One changes with the times, the other doesn’t. That’s more than enough to sever the two.

Thes 2:2 ”Therefore, brethren, stand fast; and hold the traditions which you have learned, whether by word, or by our epistle.”

Mat 7: 15-16 Beware of false prophets, who come to you in the clothing of sheep, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. By their fruits you shall know them.

December 21, 2006 9:05 AM  
Blogger Jason said...

Michael, I thought you didn't want to look like a villain?

Please note: Act 17:2 "And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures..."

And then the Bereans: Act 17:11 "These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so."

The Jews were masters of oral tradition and yet they didn't fall back on the "Our tradition says your wrong" or the old "Just because it's not in the Bible doesn't mean it's not right" argument. These Jews tested Paul because they had no reason to blindly accept his teaching as "divinely inspired," since they had just met him.

Gosh, you must hate these Bereans. I mean, intelligent men and women using the Bible to prove Paul. What're they thinking??? Those blind fools!! Quick, someone fetch a Catholic priest!!

Let's pretend that I'm a Berean. I going to search Scripture to see if what you have to say is true. Whenever you're ready.

December 21, 2006 9:26 AM  
Blogger St. Michael the Archangel said...

Ok lets just touch on your understanding of what and who the Bereans were... its laughable that you mistranslate a few verses into foundation for what your sayings... its not actually the bereans that you should be siding with.. your nothing like them.. your actually a thessalonian... I will prove that as soon as I get home.. I am at work now and don't have the time or the resources to answer you.

PS: Grow up and stop making stupid comments, your only making yourself look laughable.

December 21, 2006 11:31 AM  
Blogger Jason said...

Don't bother proving it. I've made my point. If you would prefer I be a Thessalonians, then that's fine. I really don't care. Like the Bereans, some ended up believing, some didn't. Paul used Scripture in both instances to prove and disprove his beliefs (hint hint).

Use your valuable time and resources to discuss Mary, the original subject of this post. You can use whatever's leftover to explain how the person of Jesus isn't human.

If it helps, here's a summary of the questions I'd like answered in light of all your Mary claims:

• The substance of flesh came from Mary. Where exactly are we told this?

• God is unable to take on flesh from someone stained by original sin. What evidence can you offer that backs this up?

• The person of Jesus isn’t human. Explain and show how Heb 2:7, Romans 8:3, Gal 4:4 and Phl 2:9 fit in with this belief.

• Elizabeth called Mary “Mother of God”. Prove it.

• Please provide a reference for the “Will God join Himself…” verse.

• Who are the two groups of "brothers" are in Matthew 12:46.

• How did Mary remain 'ever-virgin' in light of Matthew 1:25

• Is there anything in Scripture that says Mary had a sinless birth. A simple yes or no will suffice.

December 21, 2006 1:28 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

Michael has vanished.

February 15, 2007 3:34 PM  

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