Catholic Faith: Blog
This Catholic Faith Blog is Maintained by the Catholic Rebuttals Research Team. Here You Will Find Responses to Reader's Questions, Catholic Commentary and Other Resources!
In order to understand the salvific role that the Blessed Virgin Mother has in God’s plan of salvation, we will first examine the communion of saints. In Acts 9:13, we read, “How much evil he has done to your saints in Jerusalem?" Those who believe in Jesus and live his gospel are called 'saints,' which translates to 'he holy ones.' These holy ones are of the living, here on earth at that time. In (Act 9:15), we read, “Go, for he is a chosen instrument of mine to carry out my name before the Gentiles, …" Throughout the book of Acts we read, that Jesus appointed his disciples, and he uses them as instruments to spread the Good News. This observation leads many to beg the question, "Why did God choose this type of plan, could he not simply wave his hand and put everything back in order?" The answer to this is, he sure could have; but, because God is love, He chose to give the saints a role in His plan of salvation.
Those who are baptized, all have a responsibility and duty to be an instrument to the spirit. As His tool, we participate in others' salvation by bring them to Christ. Remember that all who are baptized into his death, now live in His life, His body the Church (1 Corinthians 12:12). With our sufferings, united to Christ’s sufferings (Colossians 1:24), those who are sanctified, become cohorts in the work of salvation; but remember, it is always Christ who saves (1 Corinthians 6:11). In 1 Corinthians 6:1, Paul tells his disciples not to go to the civil courts but to go to the saints (the living on earth) in order to settle disputes. Paul felt it unjust for pagans to judge the saints. He reminds them that the saints (the living in heaven) will judge the world (here on earth) and the angles (there in heaven). This passage says the saints will be our judge, in (Matthew 19:28) we read the 12 Apostles will judge the 12 tribes of Israel. Again, in John 5:22 we see that all judgement is given to Jesus. Ultimately it is Jesus’ judgement, but we being members of his body (His Church) will judge with Him, in Him and through Him (1 Corinthians 12:27).
What I am pointing out here is that the Body of Christ, consists of those on earth, the souls in purification (purgatory)and those in heaven. “What is the Church if not the assembly of all the saints," of which the Mother of Jesus is the faultless imitator of Christ her son, for she was the first Christian (Catholic Catechism). Those who have died and who are in heaven, are alive in Christ for all eternity. This makes them more alive than we are here on earth. In Revelation 22:8, we read about John falling to the ground to worship the angel, which the angel told him, “You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brethren the prophets, and with those who keep the words of this book. Worship God." The Church consist of heaven and earth, the body of Christ cannot be separated, since it is one body with many members, including the angels (1 Corinthians 12:12).
I cannot imagine a better Christian, saint or imitator of Christ, than His mother. What a tremendous example she is of taking up the cross and following Jesus. As Jesus's mother, but also as a perfect disciple (Luke 11:27-28), Mary suffered immensely during Christ’s passion and death (Luke 2:34-35). She certainly carried her cross, one of extreme sorrow, and bore it all the way to the foot of her son’s cross. Galatians 6:2, tells us to, “Bare one another’s burdens," this is certainly what Mary did with her son’s Passion and death. Her merit was totally due to God, for she was full of God’s grace as stated by the angel Gabriel in Luke 1:26-28. She was mot full of the life of God, just for the purpose of giving birth to His son, Mary was consecrated for the purpose of being the instrument which God gives life to all the living (Revelation 12:17).
Jesus is the new Adam (1 Corinthians 15:47-49), Mary is the new Eve, mother of all the living for all eternity. Imagine Mary standing at the foot of her son Jesus, as he hang there on a cross, blood streaming from his body, his face disfigured by the beatings. All of his followers are gone except for John, Mary his mother, Mary his aunt, and Mary Magdalene. Jesus in his torment, says to John and His mother, to embrace each other as mother and child (John 19:26-27). In doing so, He calls her 'women,' in order to make the connection of Mary is the women prophesied in (Geneses 3:15) and (Revelation 12:17). Jesus does this, moments before He gives up his Spirit, with His final breath Jesus institutionalizes the role of Mary, as Mother of His Church.