Answering the rebuttals of a Catholic apologist, #31: “Mary Needed a Savior”

Today, we continue with our series responding to “Meeting the Protestant Challenge: How to Answer 50 Biblical Objections to Catholic Beliefs” (2019), written by Karlo Broussard. With this next chapter, the Catholic apologist continues his section on Mary as he counters evangelical Protestants’ arguments that “Mary Needed a Savior.”

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The Roman Catholic church teaches that Mary was not only initially preserved from original sin (aka a sin nature) at the moment of her alleged “immaculate conception,” but that she also “committed no sin of any kind during her whole earthly life” – CCC 411. Not so fast, object Protestants, who point to Luke 1:47 where Mary exclaimed,

“…my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.”

Protestants rightly ask, How could Mary have exalted God as her Savior if she was sinless? This is a difficult verse for the Roman Catholic church and Broussard presents the church’s rationale. Fasten your seat belts.

The RCC agrees that God is Mary’s Savior, but in a “singularly unique way.” How so? Pope Pius IX posited the following:

“In view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Savior of the human race, [Mary] was preserved free from all stain of original sin.”

Broussard elaborates, “Unlike we who are saved by the application of a past event, Mary was saved by the application of graces of a future event” (p. 174).

In plain English, Catholics argue that Mary was saved by God at the moment of her conception based upon the merits of Jesus’s future propitatory sacrifice and kept sinless by God’s grace, so that Mary could rejoice in her Savior, even though she was allegedly always without sin. Some Catholics also zealously advocate for the sinlessness of John the Baptist and Mary’s husband, Joseph, although the RCC has not officially ruled on those two cases.

Let’s now respond to Broussard.

  • Last week, we thoroughly discussed how Romans 3:10-12 precludes any exceptions to the Scriptural truth that “None is righteous, no, not one.” See here.
  • Nowhere in the New Testament is there a teaching of the preservation of anyone from sin as Roman Catholicism claims for Mary. The doctrine is a Roman fabrication.
  • If Mary was sinless, why did she go to the Temple to offer a sacrifice for her uncleanness in Luke 2:22? Broussard predictably omits any mention of that verse. See the article far below for more on this topic.
  • Why is it so important for Catholics that Mary be sinless? In Catholic theology, Mary was semi-deified and elevated to the offices of co-mediator and co-redemptrix, along with Jesus Christ. It followed that Mary had to have been sinless in order for her to hold those offices. The doctrine of Mary’s immaculate conception was eventually defined as binding Catholic dogma in 1854.
  • According to Catholic tradition, Mary’s mother was named Anne. If Mary had to have been sinless in order to bear Jesus Christ in her womb, as Catholics argue, it follows that Anne would also have had to been sinless to bear Mary, and that Anne’s mother would also have had to been sinless to bear her, etc., etc., etc.

Mary exalted her Savior because she was a sinner saved by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone, just like every other genuine Christian. She would be grieved to know how Catholics semi-deify her and worship her.

I hope you enjoyed the brevity of this chapter. It was Broussard’s shortest chapter up to this point.

If Mary was sinless, why was she unclean and had to offer a sacrifice for sin?
https://carm.org/catholic/mary-unclean-offered-sacrifice-for-sin

Next up: “The Lord’s Brothers”

36 thoughts on “Answering the rebuttals of a Catholic apologist, #31: “Mary Needed a Savior”

  1. Amen!
    And today more than ever the person practicing Roman Catholicism is being pushed to pray the rosary! They have really been pushed to pray it for the Coronavirus! It’s so so sad 😞

    We that have had the scales fall from our eyes ought to be EXTREMELY grateful that we have been spared in believing this fable that is truly against the One True God through Jesus the Messiah!
    🙌

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks, sister! Not only is the deification of Mary anti-Scriptural, but also anti-Scriptural are her alleged roles as co-Mediator (as you mention with the RCC seeking Mary’s intervention during this pandemic) and co-Redemptrix. Uninformed evangelicals have NO CLUE about the importance Catholics accord to Mary in allegedly helping them MERIT their salvation and for other circumstances. Such an insult to God.
      Yes, it’s only by God’s grace that we were delivered from this darkness.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Reblogged this on Born Again and commented:
    We that have had the scales fall from our eyes ought to be EXTREMELY grateful that we have been spared in believing this fable that is truly against the One True God through Jesus the Messiah!
    🙌 🙏🏻❤️

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for the encouragement, sister! I appreciated the short chapter because this book is so laborious to wade through. Broussard actually has 5 chapters devoted to Mary as well as 5 chapters that follow on the saints that also pertain to Mary worship. It’s revealing that in a book defending Catholic theology, 10 of the 50 chapters pertain to Mary and the saints.

      Liked by 3 people

  3. Thank you for this counter rebuttal, Tom! It is short, concise, effective, and informative. So, that is the reason why they elevated Mary. My initial thought was a pagan goddess worship that they need to accomodate back then.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you, Kent! Yes, you’re absolutely right that Catholicism’s adaptation of pagan mother goddess worship (and hence Mary’s role as co-mediator and co-redemptrix) required that Mary be sinless. You peeled back the onion one more layer; an important point. I’m going to try hard to limit future posts in this series to 700 words. I know as a blog reader myself, I’m intimidated by 1000-word posts.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Sometimes, if not most, spin doctors lose their “souls” along the way; how much more if it is on the topic of faith. You are right, Tom, it is a good strategy in this day and age. Parsimonious is better and easy to read. GOD bless you my friend! Keep safe.

        Liked by 3 people

  4. Some interesting stuff from the Catholic Encyclopedia. The hilarious thing is that some of the source material for the Mary stuff found in the Quran and taught by Muhammad, also comes from the proto-evangelium of James. LOL!

    Catholic Encyclopedia:

    Genesis 3:15

    No direct or categorical and stringent proof of the dogma can be brought forward from Scripture. But the first scriptural passage which contains the promise of the redemption, mentions also the Mother of the Redeemer. The sentence against the first parents was accompanied by the Earliest Gospel (Proto-evangelium), which put enmity between the serpent and the woman: “and I will put enmity between thee and the woman and her seed; she (he) shall crush thy head and thou shalt lie in wait for her (his) heel” (Genesis 3:15). The translation “she” of the Vulgate is interpretative; it originated after the fourth century, and cannot be defended critically. The conqueror from the seed of the woman, who should crush the serpent’s head, is Christ; the woman at enmity with the serpent is Mary. God puts enmity between her and Satan in the same manner and measure, as there is enmity between Christ and the seed of the serpent. Mary was ever to be in that exalted state of soul which the serpent had destroyed in man, i.e. in sanctifying grace. Only the continual union of Mary with grace explains sufficiently the enmity between her and Satan. The Proto-evangelium, therefore, in the original text contains a direct promise of the Redeemer, and in conjunction therewith the manifestation of the masterpiece of His Redemption, the perfect preservation of His virginal Mother from original sin.

    Luke 1:28

    The salutation of the angel Gabriel — chaire kecharitomene, Hail, full of grace (Luke 1:28) indicates a unique abundance of grace, a supernatural, godlike state of soul, which finds its explanation only in the Immaculate Conception of Mary. But the term kecharitomene (full of grace) serves only as an illustration, not as a proof of the dogma.

    Holweck, Frederick. “Immaculate Conception.” The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 7. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1910. 27 Nov. 2019 .

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Left out that the source for Romanist dogmas like the “perpetual virginity” of Mary is the proto-evangelium of James, same source material that Muhammad copied from.

        Liked by 3 people

    1. Cathy, thank you for your encouragement in the Lord! I’m am grateful for the outreach and education you and your husband do as well.

      RE: So few speak about these topics

      Yes, Gospel outreach to Roman Catholics is now considered to be “hate speech” by evangelicals.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. If Mary was sinless in order to give birth to Jesus then the infinite regress of her being born sinless and onwards is crazy…not to mention unbiblical and contrary to Romans 3:10-11. Thanks for this answer

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, brother. Yes, the Catholic logic that Mary had to have been sinless in order for her to bear the sinless Jesus Christ presumes the same condition for all of her female forbears going back to Eve.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi, Papa Tom! I was glad this was a short chapter as well. Mary’s “perseverance” defies Scripture. I thought the works based chapters were rough, but this is really something else. I do not understand why the RCC even discusses or “reads” Scripture when their interpretations are so far from Scripture’s authorial intent, original meaning etc. In my mind Mary being a sinner used by God to be the vessel who gives birth to the Savior of the world is more amazing than Mary being sinless. I bought The Gospel According to Rome and I am eager to learn more!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Mandy! Thanks for all of your good comments! Yes, Catholicism must twist and “force-fit” Scripture to make it align with its Marianism. Mary would be so grieved by all of this adulation. When I was a Catholic (up until the age of 27), Marian worship didn’t appeal to me (I was a square peg even then), but I was very much aware that about half of Catholic worship/devotion was directed towards Mary. When I read the New Testament for the first time in my early-20s, I was literally flabbergasted at the scant mention of Mary compared to the attention/worship she is accorded by the RCC. Not a word about Mary after Acts 1. As a Catholic, I was absolutely stunned by the absence of any mention of Mary in the epistles.
      Yes, Jesus’ genealogy included several “notorious” sinners. There was no need to abruptly “clean things up” with the introduction of Mary, but Catholicism was on a mission of syncretically adapting pagan mother goddess worship.
      I’m so happy to hear that you purchased the Gospel According to Rome! It’s the best resource available for comparing Catholic theology to Scripture.

      Liked by 1 person

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