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When Elizabeth greeted Mary -

42 ...she exclaimed with a loud cry, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 And why is this granted me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?..." - Luke 1:42-43 (RSVCE)

Why don't Evangelical Protestants treat Mary with at least this much reverence?

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What do you mean "against" her? –  curiousdannii Jun 5 at 3:37
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This is a good question, but it ought to he asked in a more scholarly way. " Why do born again Christians reject Mary as their spiritual mother" might be better, but I don't know what you're trying to say. –  Peter Turner Jun 5 at 4:11
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@sshhhhh Can you give us the exact words they used, or the source of their quote? That would be helpful. –  Steve Jun 5 at 4:39
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Basically, there is no explicit biblical support for Mary's Immaculate Conception, her eternal virginity, her eternal sinlessness or any reason why she should be venerated above anyone else. She is to be honored, but not more than Peter, Paul, Joseph or Billy Graham. All of these doctrines about Mary are purely Catholic teachings and not biblical teachings. Thus, as "born again" Christians who look to the Bible alone for authority, there is no reason to accept those doctrines. –  Narnian Jun 5 at 11:50
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Catholics do identify themselves as "born-again Christians", even though the term itself is largely attributed to Protestantism. To be born again means to be born out of water and the spirit. Catholics also focus on Mary, mother of Jesus. So, the premise of this question is false. –  Anonymous Jun 5 at 12:22

6 Answers 6

Born-again protestant Christians are not "against" Mary of Nazareth. Every one of them accepts Mary as the Mother of Jesus, and while few would use the phrase, they have no issue with the concept of Mary as the Mother of God.

That said, all but a few protestants, including nearly all who would self-identify as "born-again" reject most of the teachings about Mary that have been defined over the years, mostly by the Roman Catholic Church, as being at best, unnecessary for salvation, since for the most part, most Protestants agree that (as Article VI of the Articles of Religion of the Church of England states):

Holy Scripture containeth all things necessary to salvation: so that whatsoever is not read therein, nor may be proved thereby, is not to be required of any man, that it should be believed as an article of Faith, or be though requisite or necessary to salvation.

For protestants, principle rules out such teachings of the Roman Catholic church as the immaculate conception, the assumption, the notion of Mary as the mediatrix of all graces, and most Marian apparitions. Further, some of the teachings about Mary that are firmly grounded in Holy Scripture, like the annunciation, are not widely observed by many protestants, because they are not perceived to be of as much value in protestant theology.

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distinguo When Protestants reject definitions formalized over the years by the Bishops and the Pope, they also reject the constant Sacred Tradition held by the common folk which is the source of those definitions. –  Peter Turner Jun 6 at 3:12
    
This question has been significantly edited (to change it's tone, not it's underlying intent) - you may wish to edit your answer to reflect that. –  bruised reed Jun 10 at 4:55

Protestants regard Mary as an honored servant of God. Generally they think the Roman and Orthodox churches are somewhat excessive with doctrines which are not found in the Bible and which place Mary above the status of a righteous person who nevertheless had faults. My apologies for those who are argumentative about it.

Mary is a blessed woman who was chosen by God to be the mother of Jesus' physical body during the incarnation. Jesus himself is uncreated and is fully God; clearly Mary only became His mother when He came to Earth as a child. Many Protestants suspect Catholics of thinking Mary was somehow Jesus' mother even before her own birth. Protestants generally believe Mary's body was formed in her mother's womb and her spirit given by God at that time, like all other humans.

Mary herself was subject to the effects of Adam's fall from grace. Her own faith led her to redemption, just as the faith of Abraham and other saints did. Ultimately her redemption depended on Jesus' sacrifice, just the same as all of us.

The song, Mary Did You Know expresses a typical protestant view of and appreciation for Mary.

Mary did you know that your baby boy will some day walk on water? Mary did you know that your baby boy will save our sons and daughters? Did you know that your baby boy has come to make you new? This child that you've delivered, will soon deliver you.

Mary did you know that your baby boy will give sight to a blind man? Mary did you know that your baby boy will calm a storm with his hand? Did you know that your baby boy has walked where angels trod? And when your kiss your little baby, you have kissed the face of God.

Oh Mary did you know

The blind will see, the deaf will hear, the dead will live again. The lame will leap, the dumb will speak, the praises of the lamb

Mary did you know that your baby boy is Lord of all creation? Mary did you know that your baby boy would one day rule the nations? Did you know that your baby boy is heaven's perfect Lamb? This sleeping child you're holding is the great I am

Youtube video

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+1 for the song "Mary did you know?". It's one of my favorite Christmas song. We even performed a skit while I was singing the song. –  Mawia Jun 5 at 7:07
    
In the Catholic Tradition we believe is impossible to be excessive in venerating Our Lady. –  Peter Turner Jun 5 at 11:26
    
@Peter Turner, Which is why Protestants shy away from it. Catholic excess sends Prots running the other way. –  david brainerd Jun 7 at 1:04
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@PeterTurner, yes it is. The sort of veneration we give to Mary is hyperdulia (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dulia#Roman_Catholic.2C_Orthodox), as opposed to the dulia we accord to the other saints; but we do not give latria to Mary or any other saint, only to God Himself. Thus, venerating Mary by giving her latria (worshiping her as if she were God) is certainly excessive. –  Matt Gutting Jun 7 at 2:21
    
This question has been significantly edited (to change it's tone, not it's underlying intent) - you may wish to edit your answer to reflect that. –  bruised reed Jun 10 at 4:56

We don't actually hate Mother Mary nor against her. It is the adoration and veneration of Mary that we are against. We simply see Mary as a woman of faith and obedience.

So Sarah laughed to herself as she thought, "After I am worn out and my lord is old, will I now have this pleasure?" (Genesis 18:12, NIV)

Zechariah asked the angel, "How can I be sure of this? I am an old man and my wife is well along in years." (Luke 1:18, NIV)

"I am the Lord's servant," Mary answered. "May your word to me be fulfilled." Then the angel left her. (Luke 1:38, NIV)

Sarah simply laughed when God told Abram that he will have a son. Zechariah was doubtful when Gabriel told him that his old wife will bear him a son. Unlike the others, Mary did not doubt God and was obedient to God's will. Mary was ready to face all the troubles that she will face by getting pregnant without a husband. She simply submitted herself to the will of God and said "I am the Lord's servant".

There are many reasons why we are against the veneration of Mary. We see Mary as more of a human figure than a divine one, as these verses attest:

  1. Jesus called his mother as "Woman". (John 2:4, John 19:26)
  2. Mary called God as "Savior". (Luke 1:47)
  3. Mary was also present on the day of Pentecost, praying to Jesus along with other disciples to call upon the Holy Spirit. No one prayed to Mary! (Acts 1:14)
  4. Mary called herself the servant of God (Luke 1:38)

Now, if you tell me to pray to Mary, I will ridicule you. If you give me the image(showing only Mary with a halo over her head) or an idol of Mary, I will throw it away. Because, all I need is Jesus, and only Jesus.

Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6, NIV)

I hope now you understand why many Non-Catholics appear to be against Mother Mary.

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No need for ridicule (third paragraph from the end). Have you ever displayed a Christmas crèche? They all contain an image of Mary. I have a crèche which I display at Christmastide. I see nothing wrong with being reminded through an image that Jesus, the Son of Man, had His gestation in the womb of a woman, and an honored one at that! "But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons" (Galatians 4:4-5). –  rhetorician Jun 5 at 10:35
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@rhetorician I don't mind having a Christmas card with Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus. There are some image which shows only Mary with a halo over her head and clearly depicting her as holy. That's what I mean. –  Mawia Jun 5 at 10:57
    
This question has been significantly edited (to change it's tone, not it's underlying intent) - you may wish to edit your answer to reflect that. –  bruised reed Jun 10 at 4:58

In the New Testament there are two passages in particular that at least suggest that Jesus wasn't in favor of the impulse towards veneration of his mother that took place among his followers, even during his earthly existence.

Luke 8:19-21 Now Jesus' mother and brothers came to see him, but they were not able to get near him because of the crowd. Someone told him, "Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to see you."

He replied, "My mother and brothers are those who hear God's word and put it into practice."

Luke 11:27-28 As he said these things, a woman in the crowd raised her voice and said to him, “Blessed is the womb that bore you, and the breasts at which you nursed!”

He replied, "Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it."

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Now that the question has been rephrased, I think I have the answer:

42 ...she exclaimed with a loud cry, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 And why is this granted me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?..." - Luke 1:42-43 (RSVCE)

Why don't Evangelical Protestants treat Mary with at least this much reverence?

Because Jesus chided a woman who used just about those exact words that Mary erroneously anticipated "All generations" would use for her (Luke 1:48 "henceforth all generations will call me blessed"), in Luke 11:27-28

27 As he said this, a woman in the crowd raised her voice and said to him, “Blessed is the womb that bore you, and the breasts that you sucked!” 28 But he said, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it!” (Luke 11:27-28 RSV CE)

Who would dare prattle on about Mary being blessed after such a rebuke? Its pretty discouraging. Catholics often claim that nothing pleases Jesus more than to hear his mother praised and put up on a pedastool, even above himself(!), and yet here, he seems pretty angry at a woman doing exactly that.

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"Evangelical Protestants" reject the Catholic approach to venerating Mary, because much of that approach, including defining the Immaculate Conception, the Assumption, Mary's role as co-redemptrix, mediatrix of all graces, and the large number of claimed apparitions, both those officially recognized by the Church, and those not, as being at best, unnecessary for salvation, and at worst, a superstitious human invention. Most Protestants agree that (as Article VI of the Articles of Religion of the Church of England states):

Holy Scripture containeth all things necessary to salvation: so that whatsoever is not read therein, nor may be proved thereby, is not to be required of any man, that it should be believed as an article of Faith, or be though requisite or necessary to salvation.

I've never seen a Catholic reciting the Hail Mary, who 'exclaimed with a loud cry" the quotation from St. John the Baptist's mother that it contains, that is, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!" Does this mean that Catholics do not treat the Mother of God with the same degree of reverence that Elizabeth did?

The wording of the question (at least) implies that Evangelical protestants treat Mary with insufficient reverence. This raises some questions. First, what is this appropriate amount of reverence to show Mary? Second, what is the evidence upon which this charge is based?

When Thomas responded to Jesus' declaration to his followers that they knew the way he was going, by saying,

"Lord we do not know where you are going, how can we know the way" [John 14:5]

When Jesus responded to Thomas, he said,

I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. [John 14:6]

He didn't say anything about his mother.

Further, I suspect most Protestants would consider these three passages of scripture, when considering what amount of reverence of the Mother of God is appropriate:

How is it you sought me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father's house? [Luke 2:49]

O woman, what have you to do with me? [John 2:4b];

and

"Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?" And stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, "Here are my mother and my brothers! For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother, and sister, and mother." [Matthew 12:48b-50]

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Regrettably, you witnessed an instance of "click to early" syndrome. –  brasshat Jun 10 at 7:20
    
Oops, I did it again: actually, that should be "click too early". –  brasshat Jun 10 at 7:37

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