This post is in response to a comment left for me in my recent blog post, Catholic verses? Part 10. The first part of the comment was pulled from this page: Immaculate Conception and Assumption, so I will deal with that website’s argument on the immaculate conception, and the comment in context.
“Let’s take the second citation first. Mary, too, required a Savior. Like all other descendants of Adam, she was subject to the necessity of contracting original sin. But by a special intervention of God, undertaken at the instant she was conceived, she was preserved from the stain of original sin and its consequences. She was therefore redeemed by the grace of Christ, but in a special way—by anticipation.”
There are several problems with this argument; first, God is no respecter of persons. He treats all of humanity the same regardless of station in life, male/female, now Jew/Gentile, etc… There is no scriptural evidence that it is any different in Mary’s case. Mary herself made it clear that she did indeed require a savior. Why do we require a savior in the first place? Sin.
Sin separates us from God, and there needs to be payment for sin. Each of us have to come to terms with the fact that we are sinners. Mary is never, ever, treated any different in scripture. As I pointed out in a previous post; we can even become on par with Mary by living in faith and doing the will of the Father; Jesus makes that point very clear, declaring those who do these things His “mother.” If Mary was immaculately conceived, it would bar me from ever being called His “mother.” We must each turn to God in faith in order to “tap into” salvation; there is no evidence that Mary is any different.
There also seems to be a confusion on that website about “sin.” Sin is missing the mark of God’s perfection; it really is that simple. The author says that children, because they are below the age of reason, cannot sin. Not so. Anything a child does that is not perfectly in line with God’s perfection and will is sin. Now, their salvation and/or damnation (I’m not getting into the whole age of accountability discussion here) may hinge on the age of reason, but not whether or not they sin.
The author is trying to make the point that when Paul clearly says that all have sinned…that he really didn’t mean “all.” A fundamental rule of Biblical interpretation is to look at the context, even when turning to the original language, context is a must. In context it is clear that Paul really did indeed mean “all.”
Romans 3:22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: 23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
It’s quite clear in context. The author then tries to say that if “all” means “all” that it applies to Christ too…big problem; there was the first Adam; specially made, no human father…clean, fresh, no sin. Then scripture is clear; there is a last Adam, Christ; only begotten Son of God, no human father…clean, fresh, no sin. This fact is held up for Christ alone, and no other. The rest of us, who have human fathers, cannot be in the same league as Christ.
1 Corinthians 15:45 And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. 46 Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. 47 The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven.
Well, the author goes on to try to make Mary into the new Eve. Wait a minute; was Mary Jesus’ husband? Nope. Who is Jesus’ bride? The Church. Who was made from Christ, as Eve was made from Adam? The Church. The Church, the bride, is the new Eve, not Mary. It is true that Eve was made without sin as well; as is the Church because she, the Church, is Christ’s body.
I will make another post soon answering the question; Is Mary a type of the ark of the covenant?