Sunday, November 29, 2009

and the greatest of these is love.

Above all, I'm thankful for this:

What an inexplicably incredible thing that He died for me. Every time I receive the Eucharist, I repeat to myself the lyrics of a favorite song, "You Are My King (Amazing Love)" by the Newsboys:

"I'm forgive, because You were forsaken
I'm accepted; You were condemned
I'm alive and well, Your Spirit is within me,
Because You died and rose again.
Amazing love, how can it be that You my King should die for me?
Amazing love, I know it's true, and it's my joy to honor You
In all I do, I honor You.
You are my King. Jesus, You are my King."

That about sums it up right there. How freaking amazing. And there is no greater sacrifice or more perfect example of love.

As November comes to a close and the Advent season begins, Christmas carols and hymns seem to fill the air everywhere I go. Today I've been pondering the lyrics of the very famous "Mary Did You Know?" It was written by Mark Lowry, who is actually Protestant. It was bothering me because of the line "This child that you've delivered/Will soon deliver you."

Hang on...Mary doesn't need to be saved, right? As a Catholic, I believe that in the Immaculate Conception - that she was born without original sin. As it turns out, after a quick Google search I found that this is actually a commonly-addressed issue within the Catholic community.

I found that the issue was brought up on several websites, including this blog.

I found this particular comment to be enlightening:

"While the song is written from a Protestant standpoint and the future tense gives us pause as Catholics, it is important to remember that God is not bound by time and that it was the (Incarnation,) Passion, Death, and Resurrection of Christ which gave Mary the grace to be conceived without original sin, not the other way around. Yes, this is a paradox, but it is important to remember.

As to whether Mary knew that Christ was the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, it doesn't seem that the Lucan text demonstrates this. The same goes for Christ as Sacrificial Lamb or High Priest.. Luke's Gospel dwells on messianic language, which did not necessarily carry the high Christological attachments that Christians found to be implicitly contained within them after the resurrection of Christ. In fact, a Jew of the time would not have expected the Messiah (Christ) to be "Heaven's perfect Lamb" or "The Great I AM." Inflated titles like "Son of God" were regularly employed in the coronation rites of Jewish kings and part of the Davidic and messianic traditions, but they were not understood as ascribing divinity to the king.

Could Mary have been given this knowledge, given her unique role and relationship? I don't see why not. But the Lucan text itself doesn't seem to indicate that she must have known this."

Wowsa. Well, that makes sense! God is not bound by time. And of course she knew at the time that she was to be the mother of the Son of God, but she had no idea what that role would entail. She was so incredibly humble.

Anyway, I really hope I don't sound too preachy. It was just something on my mind, and I feel a lot better after reading this - I can listen to the beautiful "Mary Did You Know?" in peace. Hopefully it helps someone out there resolve the same questions I had.

Goodnight, everyone, and good luck with finals!

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