Mary - Comparing Catholic Teaching to Scripture

Below are some excerpts from the Vatican's official Catechism of The Catholic Church. Here we reveal exactly what the Catholic Church teaches about Mary and compare that with what the Scriptures have to say about her. You will find that the two reveal a very different picture of who Mary was.

963 Since the Virgin Mary's role in the mystery of Christ and the Spirit has been treated, it is fitting now to consider her place in the mystery of the Church. "The Virgin Mary . . . is acknowledged and honored as being truly the Mother of God and of the redeemer. . . . She is 'clearly the mother of the members of Christ' . . . since she has by her charity joined in bringing about the birth of believers in the Church, who are members of its head."502 "Mary, Mother of Christ, Mother of the Church."503"

Catholic Church Teaches: The Bible Teaches:
Mary is the “Mother of God and of the redeemer” Matt 12:46 While Jesus was still talking to the crowd, his mother and brothers stood outside, wanting to speak to him. 47 Someone told him, "Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you." 48 He replied to him, "Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?" 49 Pointing to his disciples, he said, "Here are my mother and my brothers. 50 For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother." (NIV)
Col 1:15 He [Jesus] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. (NIV)
Mary is the “Mother of the Church” Col 1:17 He [Jesus] is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. 19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross. (NIV)
Mary “by her charity joined in bringing about the birth of believers” Titus 3:5 He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, 6 whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior (NIV)

964 Mary's role in the Church is inseparable from her union with Christ and flows directly from it. "This union of the mother with the Son in the work of salvation is made manifest from the time of Christ's virginal conception up to his death";504 it is made manifest above all at the hour of his Passion:

Catholic Church Teaches: The Bible Teaches:
Mary is in union with the Son “in the work of salvation" Acts 4:10 …It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth…12 Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved." (NIV)

966 "Finally the Immaculate Virgin, preserved free from all stain of original sin, when the course of her earthly life was finished, was taken up body and soul into heavenly glory, and exalted by the Lord as Queen over all things, so that she might be the more fully conformed to her Son, the Lord of lords and conqueror of sin and death."508 The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin is a singular participation in her Son's Resurrection and an anticipation of the resurrection of other Christians:

Catholic Church Teaches: The Bible Teaches:
Mary was “preserved free from all stain of original sin” Rom 3:10 As it is written: "There is no one righteous, not even one; (NIV)
Mary “was taken up body and soul into heavenly glory, and exalted by the Lord as Queen over all things” Rev 4:2 At once I was in the Spirit, and there before me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on it…4 Surrounding the throne were twenty-four other thrones, and seated on them were twenty-four elders... In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures…. Rev 5:6 Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing in the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders… 13 "To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!" (NIV)
The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin is a singular participation in her Son's Resurrection 1 Cor 15: 21 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. 22 For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive (NIV)

967 By her complete adherence to the Father's will, to his Son's redemptive work, and to every prompting of the Holy Spirit, the Virgin Mary is the Church's model of faith and charity. Thus she is a "preeminent and . . . wholly unique member of the Church"; indeed, she is the "exemplary realization" (typus)510 of the Church.

Catholic Church Teaches: The Bible Teaches:
That Mary was in “complete adherence to the Father's will” Rom 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (NIV)
the Virgin Mary is the Church's model of faith and charity… she is the "exemplary realization" (typus)510 of the Church. John 13:15 I [Jesus] have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. 16 I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him (NIV)

968Her role in relation to the Church and to all humanity goes still further. "In a wholly singular way she cooperated by her obedience, faith, hope, and burning charity in the Savior's work of restoring supernatural life to souls. For this reason she is a mother to us in the order of grace."511

Catholic Church Teaches: The Bible Teaches:
Mary “cooperated by her obedience, faith, hope, and burning charity in the Savior's work of restoring supernatural life to souls.” Heb 5:8 Although he [Jesus] was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered 9 and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him (NIV)
Mary “is a mother to us in the order of grace” John 1:17 grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father's side, has made him known.(NIV)

969 This motherhood of Mary in the order of grace continues uninterruptedly from the consent which she loyally gave at the Annunciation and which she sustained without wavering beneath the cross, until the eternal fulfillment of all the elect. Taken up to heaven she did not lay aside this saving office but by her manifold intercession continues to bring us the gifts of eternal salvation . . . . Therefore the Blessed Virgin is invoked in the Church under the titles of Advocate, Helper, Benefactress, and Mediatrix."

Catholic Church Teaches: The Bible Teaches:
Mary in the order of grace continues uninterruptedly John 16:31 Jesus answered. 32 "But a time is coming, and has come, when you will be scattered, each to his own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me. (NIV)
from the consent which she loyally gave John 10:17 The reason my Father loves me [Jesus] is that I lay down my life-only to take it up again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father." (NIV)
Mary’s “manifold intercession continues to bring us the gifts of eternal salvation” John 17:1 After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: "Father, the time has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. 2 For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. 3 Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. (NIV)
the Blessed Virgin is invoked in the Church under the titles of Advocate, Helper, Benefactress, and Mediatrix 1 John 2:1 My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: (KJV)
Heb 13:6 So we say with confidence, "The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?" (NIV)
1 Tim 2:5 For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,(NIV)

971 "All generations will call me blessed": "The Church's devotion to the Blessed Virgin is intrinsic to Christian worship."515 The Church rightly honors "the Blessed Virgin with special devotion. From the most ancient times the Blessed Virgin has been honored with the title of 'Mother of God,' to whose protection the faithful fly in all their dangers and needs. . . . This very special devotion . . . differs essentially from the adoration which is given to the incarnate Word and equally to the Father and the Holy Spirit, and greatly fosters this adoration."516 The liturgical feasts dedicated to the Mother of God and Marian prayer, such as the rosary, an "epitome of the whole Gospel," express this devotion to the Virgin Mary."
Catholic Church Teaches: The Bible Teaches:
Mary is a “Blessed Virgin” Matt 1:24 When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. 25 But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus. (NIV)
Matt 13:55 Isn't his [Jesus] mother's name Mary, and aren't his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas? 56 Aren't all his sisters with us? (NIV)
the Blessed Virgin has been honored with the title of 'Mother of God,’ As Jesus was saying these things, a woman in the crowd called out, "Blessed is the mother who gave you birth and nursed you." 28 He replied, "Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it." (NIV)
whose (Mary’s) “protection the faithful fly in all their dangers and needs” Ps 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. (NIV)
the “Marian prayer…express this devotion to the Virgin Mary” Matt 6:9 "This, then, is how you should pray: "'Our Father in heaven….(NIV)


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