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Theotokos

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The principal understanding of the Virgin Mary as Ever-Virgin in [[Scripture]] is expressed in terms of her being a new [[Ark of the Covenant]], a created thing which somehow contained the uncontainable God. The reason that St. Joseph the Betrothed (as tradition names him) did not enter into marital relations with her is that he understood her as one would understand the Ark, that she had been set aside for use by God, and that her womb had in some sense been made into a temple. The language used for the Virgin in the [[New Testament]] parallels that used for the Ark in the [[Old Testament|Old]]:
From a [[Roman Catholic]] source:<ref>[http://zuserver2.star.ucl.ac.uk/~vgg/rc/aplgtc/hahn/m4/ma.html Answering Common Objections: A Closer Look at Christ's Church: Mary, Ark of the Covenant] "Parallel Between the Visitation and the Ark's Journey to Jerusalem" and "Parallel Between Daniel 9 and Luke 1&2" by Scott and Kimberly Hahn</ref>
:For the first time God's presence has descended upon a person as the new ark of the Covenant. . . . Rene Laurentin speaks of the subtle use of ark imagery [early in Luke]. For instance, he shows how in [[II Kingdoms|II Samuel]] 6, there was a journey to the hill country of Judah that the ark of the covenant took. Likewise, the same phrase is used to describe Mary's journey to the hill country. . . . Both David and Mary "arose and made the journey." In II Samuel 6:2 and Luke 1:39. Laurent goes on to describe how when the Ark arrived and when Mary arrived, they were both greeted with "shouts of joy." And the word for shout or the word for Elizabeth's greeting, ''anafametezein'', is very rare. It's only used in connection with the OT liturgical ceremonies that were centered around the Ark. It literally means to "cry aloud, to proclaim or intone."
The [[Fifth Ecumenical Council|Second Council of Constantinople]], 553, Capitula II:
:''If anyone shall not confess that the Word of God has two nativities, the one from all eternity of the Father, without time and without body; the other in these last days, coming down from heaven and being made flesh of the holy and glorious Mary, Mother of God and always a virgin, and born of her: let him be anathema.''<ref>[http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf214.xii.vii.html The Capitula of the Council]</ref>
The ancient Christian titles for Mary, ''Theotokos'' ("Birth-giver to God") and ''Meter Theou'' ("Mother of God"), are not to be understood in the sense that she somehow created God. Even mothers giving birth to exclusively human children do not create their children. Rather, these titles for the Virgin are an affirmation that the Christ contained in her womb is indeed God, the ''Theanthropos'' ("God-man"). She is not his origin nor the source of the Godhead, but she did quite literally give birth to God. If we affirm that Jesus Christ is God, then we must call her ''Theotokos'', for she gave birth to God himself. Nestorius the heretic in the ancient Church refused to call her ''Theotokos'', preferring instead ''Christotokos'', because he could not understand the idea that a creature could give birth to the Creator, yet is this scandal not at the heart of the Incarnation? Nestorius's doctrines insisted on a separation between the divine ''Logos'' and the man Jesus, that somehow the Son of God had inhabited a man, not that '''God became man''' as the Christian faith has always held. Is the one who was in her womb God? Then we must call her ''Theotokos''.
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