Mary, the mother of Jesus, is worshipped and revered the world over. Some claim she is appearing in visions to children. Others say she bleeds in statues, and still others say that by praying to her, you are assured an audience with God. Others believe she was without sin and now rules as the Queen of heaven making intercession with her Son on behalf of her Son.
She was a young virgin girl who hoped in the coming of the Jewish messiah. One day, the angel Gabriel appeared and told her that she would conceive a son by the power of the Holy Spirit who would save His people from their sins. Her response to this startling announcement places her in the hall of faith. She replied, "Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. . ." She accepted the divine pronouncement in faith and she became "blessed above all women" as the human mother to the Savior of the world.
Mary gave one solitary command. It was John 2: 5, "Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it." If Mary is to be loved and revered, then we need to take her command seriously and find out what her Son commanded that we do.
Imagine the horrible scene of the crucifixion of Christ. Jesus had been nailed to the cross and was suspended between two criminals. In Luke23: 39 - 43. One of the criminals who were hanged railed at him, saying, "If thou be Christ, save thyself and us. " But the other rebuked him, saying, "Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss. " And he said, "Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. " And he said to him, "To day shalt thou be with me in paradise."
Notice the testimony of this criminal. He was arrested, tried, and justly convicted of his crimes and was under a death sentence. Now here's the quandary: he had Mary, the mother of Jesus, standing at his feet, and Jesus Christ hanging at his side. Notice what he did not do. He did not make supplication to Mary asking her to speak to her Son about his plight. Instead he went directly to Jesus. And it was Jesus personally who promised that he would be with him in Paradise.
Ask yourself this: who did he look to for eternal life, Mary or Jesus? Then who should you be looking to for eternal life?
Mary told the workers at the wedding in Canaan, where Jesus turned the water into wine, "Obey my son." Here are some of the teaching of Jesus her son that we need to obey.
· John 3: 3 "Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God."
· John 3: 16 - 17 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved."
· 1 Timothy 2:5 "For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;"
Jesus taught that a person came to faith not by keeping rituals and laws and masses, but by believing in His sacrifice on the Cross. He called that kind of faith in himself being "reborn" or being "born again." And if you think you need someone, whether it be a mortal or Mary to speak to Jesus on your behalf, again the Bible says that he HIMSELF is the mediator, the go-between, between God and man. He said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life."
For instance, the Mass is celebrated every day to reenact the Crucifixion of Christ. Yet the Bible says that Jesus' sacrificial death was done "once for all". Hebrews 7:27 "Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people's: for this he did once, when he offered up himself." When Jesus died on the cross, he cried out, "It is finished!" The work of redemption was done and never to be repeated.
Mary was a chosen vessel to bring the man Christ Jesus into the world. She was remarkable, full of faith, and she believed God. She was also sinful, human, and herself in need of a Savior. When the 120 disciples were assembled in the Upper Room on Pentecost Sunday when the Holy Spirit was poured out she was among them. She needed the infilling of the Holy Spirit herself.
Remember the story of the Magi, the Eastern astrologers who followed the star of Bethlehem searching for the King of the Jews? Matthew 2:11 "And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.". These men came to worship the King. Notice that the passage states that "they fell down and worshiped HIM," NOT her!
Mary gave one solitary command, "Obey my son." Her son said, "Worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only." If you would really honor Mary, then obey her command. Obey her Son! Mary is dishonored when she is worshipped and honored instead of her Son. She has only one desire for you, that you obey her Son, believe in Him, and be saved!
There are those who teach that church traditions are superior to the testimony of the Holy Bible. Hear the last recorded words of Jesus in Revelation 22: 18-19. "For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book." If you would honor Mary, then obey her Son! Heed his words of His testimony regarding the trustworthiness of the Holy Bible.
John 20:31 "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. " God's promise is this: Romans 10:9 "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved."