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But when the fullness of time came, God sent forth his Son, born of a woman, born under the law. (Galatians 4:4)

When God finally sent angel Gabriel, the encounter begins with an unusual greeting The scriptures does not mentioned any passages that an angel more so a higher rank angel belonging to the Choir Cherubim would bow down to a lowly woman saying;

"Hail! Full of Grace." (Luke 1:28)

This was only a greeting coming from an archangel not yet the message of God to the chosen woman who was not yet even overshadowed by the Holy Spirit. Archangel Gabriel reveals the state of the soul of Mary, and it was already "full of grace".

Pope Francis said, "nobody is born a saint, they become thus" and scriptures affirmed this as even Jesus needed to grow in wisdom and grace. Mary like all mankind including Jesus had to merit graces by living a life of humility & obedience.

Does the "fullness of time" mean God had to wait for Mary to reach the "full of grace" stature in order for Her to say Her FIAT?

Mary was born bestowed with a singular privileges but not yet full of grace as Jesus was born empty coming in the form of slave and needed to acquire wisdom and graces too.

Does the "fullness of time" depends on Mary's readiness to accept God's Will by reaching the stature "full of grace"?

  • @SolaGratia Comments are not for topical discussion. – Caleb May 30 at 7:18
2

But when the fullness of time came, ...

The German translation uses some expression here that can be found in many other verses of the bible that say:

"When the time was right", "At the right time" or "At the time when God wanted it".

... born of a woman ...

In the German translation, Galatians 4:4 and 4:5 are not two sentences. Both verses form one single sentence.

Reading this sentence completely I have no doubt that Paul wants to display Mary as "ordinary" women in this verse and not as a "special" woman, who distinguishes from other women.

Otherwise, the content of Galatians 4:5 would make absolutely no sense:

The entire sentence (Galatians 4:4-5) is saying that Jesus has been born by a woman because he should rescue all the other people who also were born by women. Or in other words: Paul writes that Jesus should rescue all the people who have a mother like Mary.

In the next sentence (Galatians 4:6) Paul writes that the readers (the Galatian Christians) are meant. However, this implies that Paul's belief is that Mary is not a special woman, but that there is no difference between Mary and all the mothers of the members of the Galatian parish.

I assume the same is case for the Greek original and the English translation.

This means that Paul's belief obviously differs from most Catholics today in this point.

Does the "fullness of time" mean God had to wait ...

Are you aware that this idea contradicts with the first statement in the creed and therefore the most important assumption of Christian belief?

The first statement says: "We believe in one God, the Father Almighty ..."

However, if God is almighty, he does not have to wait for something but he can do whatever he wants and whenever he wants to do it.

This means that you do not believe in an almighty god if you really believe that God had to wait for some event to occur.

If you believe that God is almighty, you will believe that some things (e.g. the birth of Mary) happens when God wants it. So God will not wait for the event to happen, but he will decide when the event happens.

EDIT

I'd like to do some clarifications because of your comments:

Did St. Paul said in Gal4:6 that Mary is not a special woman and are just the same with the Galatians mother?

Let's only look at Gal 4:4-5, not at Gal 4:6.

First let's assume that Paul wants to say that Mary was a special woman. In this case Gal 4:4-5 has the following meaning:

Only the brothers and sisters of Jesus (like apostle Jacob) can become Christians because only people having a mother who is "special" in the same way as Mary can become Christians.

This means that we (you and me) cannot be Christians because we don't have a "special" mother.

However, if Paul wants to say that Mary is just a "regular" woman, Gal 4:4-5 has a completely different meaning:

People who has as mother like Mary can become Christian. Because everybody has a mother like Mary, everybody can become a Christian.

Are you contradicting God Almighty when all scriptures, apostolic teaching and church fathers and universal church acknowledge Mary as God Masterpiece?

You are contradicting God Almighty when you say that God "has to" do something.

... or if you say that God "has to" wait for some event to happen.

And you were asking if God "had to" wait for Mary to be born.

  • Yes, God patiently waited for 4,000 years before finally one lowly woman humbled prayer and petitioning the Saviour to come had penetrated the Mercy of God. Can God entrusted His only Begotten Son to an immature creature to take the role of Theotokos? No, Will God waits patiently until the chosen woman reach the perfect maturity in trust & faith? Remember Incarnation requires free assent on the part of Mary, God will not force His Divine Plan. – itzsophia's vlogs May 26 at 23:14
  • @itzsophia'svlogs I've edited the middle and the last part of my answer: You wanted to know what Paul wants to write. Not only reading one verse but the whole context (Gal. 4:4-6), you can see that Paul's belief must differ from your belief massively! Paul wants to write exactly the opposite of what you think he writes. And I clarified the last part of my answer: Your these is quite close to the border of being exactly the opposite of what Christians (including Catholics) believe. – Martin Rosenau May 27 at 4:11
  • God is almighty but he wont violate the gift of freewill He bestowed on every human being. Did St. Paul said in Gal4:6 that Mary is not a special woman and are just the same with the Galatians mother? Are you contradicting God Almighty when all scriptures, apostolic teaching and church fathers and universal church acknowledge Mary as God Masterpiece? St. Theresa of Calcutta has a simple but profound words "No Mary, No Jesus. ".If Mary said No, who among the Galatian mother is worthy to become the Theotokos? – itzsophia's vlogs May 27 at 7:13
  • @itzsophia'svlogs I've added an "Edit" section to my answer. – Martin Rosenau May 28 at 5:08
  • Jesus already gave all the redeemed a Mother, haven't you accepted the Theotokos yet? (John19:27)..Jesus wont give an ordinary Galatian mother for us, Jesus gave us the very best, the most blessed among woman, Dont be an orphan in your christian journey. Yes, God has to wait that's why it called "fullness of time", if the time is not yet right, then God is willing to wait for 4,000 years. Did God chosen any woman other than Mary to be the Theotokos? Did St. Paul teaches other galatian mother aside from Mary? – itzsophia's vlogs May 28 at 5:37
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Taking the cue words from @Sola Gratia stating the Greek sense of the word "grew in grace" as pertaining to "maturity", we can also relates & infer this interpretation to the Mystery of Finding Jesus in the Temple. Jesus eagerly wanted to do God's Will in redeeming mankind even at the young age of twelve. Imagine Jesus at that age calling the apostles come and follow me.

Gospel of Luke painted Jesus humanity still not matured spiritually as we can see in Luke 2:52. Jesus still needed to grow in wisdom and grace. Jesus needed 18 more years to become fully ready both physically and spiritually as a human being by living a life of submission and obedience to St.Joseph and Mary.

At the wedding in Cana, St.John gospel described Jesus still not ready to start his ministry at 30 years old saying;

"Woman, my hour has not yet come."( John 2:4 )

But Mary this time knew Jesus was already matured to start his saving ministry unlike before when he was only twelve years old. Mary knew it was already the right time. The Wedding at Cana is the 'fullness of time' for Jesus to start his redemptive mission.

And the Woman intercessory power was revealed and her docility to the voice of the Holy Spirit shines through instructing the servants;

"Do whatever he tells you."( John 2:5 )

This particular passage reveals Jesus and Mary's role as the New Adam and New Eve. The six jars represents six days of creation and Jesus promised that He will make all things new. A new creation by restoring Divine Life and offering immortality by giving Eternal Life thru partaking of the Holy Eucharist.

Gospel of John narrated Jesus only received the anointing of the Holy Spirit at the Baptism in the River Jordan. So, from 12 years old to 30 years old, St.Joseph and Mother Mary was helping in preparing Jesus for his redemptive mission.

On the other hand, it was angel Gabriel greetings prior to the Mystery of Annunciation that reveals the "fullness of time" had arrived in Luke gospel;

"Hail, Full of Grace.."( Luke 1:28 )

The "fullness of time" in Galatians 4:4 had arrived at the right time when the handmaid of the Lord had reach the maturity in faith. Her famous Fiat can only be uttered with full trust after she merited abundant graces from living a life of humility and obedience to God's Will. The ten years of services she offered at the Temple of God away from affairs of the world increases her holiness and perfected her virtues according to Eastern Tradition, and they acknowledge Mary as the "All Holy or Panagia".

Angel Gabriel had revealed the beautiful and perfect state of soul of the Blessed Virgin Mary and its now ready to fulfill Her role as the Theotokos. Blessed Virgin Mary was now fully matured in faith and responded with full trust to God's Will in the Divine Plan of Salvation, saying to Angel Gabriel her famous Fiat;

"Be it done unto me according to thy Word.( Luke 1:38 )

The answer is Yes! ,the "fullness of time" depends on Mary's state of grace.

Will God's infinite wisdom entrust the Logos to a corrupted vessel and to an ordinary woman who do not possessed holiness and perfected their virtues?

Divine Motherhood is not a simple task, it emcompases a royal dignity not just on earth but also in heaven. Mary is the cause of Man's salvation according to St.Irenaeus a Church Father.

Without the Fiat of the Blessed Virgin Mary there is No Redemption and there is No Salvation for all sinners.

Jesus needed a pure body and the Holy Spirit needed a sorrowful & immaculate heart and the Abba Father needed a humbled & surrended will.The Most Holy Trinity resided fully in the body,soul and heart of Mary, a perfect and complete union mystically.

Sweet heart of Mary be my salvation, is reflected in Book of Wisdom.

" Who has learned your counsel, unless you have given wisdom and sent your holy spirit on high?

And thus the paths of those on earth was set right, and people were taught what pleases , and were saved by wisdom."(Wisdom9:17-18)

The people are saved by Wisdom and Mary is the Seat of Wisdom.

"No Mary, No Jesus" (St.Mother Theresa of Calcutta)

EDIT: Clarifications on @Sola Gratia comment.

"Scripture doesnt say Jesus had no grace.. "

Scripture really stated Jesus had emptied himself ( Philippians2:7 ), even Jesus does not need "sanctifying grace to begin with". And the child Jesus to merit actual graces must obey and submit to St. Joseph and Blessed Virgin Mary. ( Luke 2:52 )

Jesus does not need sanctfying grace because his role is a Redeemer or a Saviour. But St. Luke specifically stated and described how Jesus humanity acquired actual graces and wisdom:

" Then he went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. "( Luke2:51 )

Jesus humanity by living a life of humble obedience to St. Joseph and the Theotokos had acquired graces in preparation for His Redemptive Mission.

  • Please edit this to add spaces between sentences and between the book names and the chapter/verse numbers. – curiousdannii May 26 at 7:07

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