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BRO. MARS ANSWERS RODIMUS OF THE BEREANS

Posted by catholicfaithdefender on March 3, 2009

BRO. MARS ANSWERS RODIMUS OF THE BEREANS


Since Rodimus of the Bereans published in his blog his email to me, an otherwise private communication, it behooves me to publicly post my response as well. Below is my answer to his questions. Rodimus’ words are in red while mine are in black.

Dear Atty. Llasos:

Greetings!

I am one of the moderators in the discussion forums of the Bereans Apologetics and Research Ministry (BARM).  My codename is Rodimus but you can call me by my real first name, Gerald.  I have actually communicated with your teammates in Defensores Fidei Foundation like Mr. Henry Siy, Mr. Carlos Palad, and Mr. Dick Boncan.  You may ask them of me.

Thank you for your private email last December 1, 2008.

I wrote to state my comments in your blog concerning Mary’s Perptual Virginity but focusing on your response on the Greek terminologies adelphos and anepsios as used in the Bible.

The subject of your email was “Perpetual Virginity – A Response.” Your email actually was more of a query rather than a response. In fact, you merely asked me about the use of “adelphos” and “anepsios” in the Bible.

It seems to me that you evangelicals have the questions while we Catholics have the answers.

But before I continue, I would like to first inform you that BARM does not endorse the book of Mr. Anthony Pezzotta against Roman Catholicism.  Personally, I have not read his book.  However, I share in his belief that after Christ was born, Mary had other children.  Let’s now proceed:

In your email, you informed me that the Bereans Apologetics and Research Ministry (Bereans) does not endorse the book of Mr. Pezzotta against Roman Catholicism. You even told me that you have not even read his book. You did not tell me the reason why Bereans does not endorse the book of Mr. Pezzotta.

Nevertheless, you were categorical in saying that you share Mr. Pezzotta’s belief that after Christ was born, Mary had other children.

Mr. Pezzotta is not the first person to hold that view. Several others way, way before him also believed that Mary had other children after Christ’s birth. These were the Antidicomarianites, the Ebionites, certain Arians, Eudocius, Eunomius and Helvidius. You can learn about them from church history and the writings of the early church fathers.

On the other hand, early Christians like Origen (AD 248), Hilary of Poitiers (AD 354), Athanasius (360), Epiphanius of Salamis (AD 374), Didymus the Blind (AD 386),
Ambrose of Milan (AD
388), Pope Siricius I (AD 392), Jerome (AD 420), Leporius (AD 426), Augustine (AD 428), Cyril of Alexandria (AD 430) and Pope Leo I (AD 450) believed in the perpetual virginity of Mary.

You must have also known that the reformers like Martin Luther, John Calvin, and Ulrich Zwingli believed in Mary’s perpetual virginity. Catholics are in synch with what the Christians – the early church fathers and classical reformers – believed for centuries long, long before you were born.

Please note that the early Christians and the reformers have read the same Bible as you do. In fact, the church fathers (especially those from the East) must have read the New Testament in the original Greek. Yet, they don’t share your conclusion that Mary had other children aside from Our Lord.

In your email, you pleaded me to “let the Bible speak for itself.” By all means.

You contended that “after Christ was born, Mary had other children.” Let us now allow the Bible to speak for itself. You have to show me the verse in the Bible that specifically says that “after Christ was born, Mary had other children.” You have to tell me, based on the Bible, how soon after Christ was born did Mary give birth to her next child.

Let me now answer your questions:

1. I often quote Matthew 13:55 and other similar verses to prove that Mary had other children.

Your reliance on Matthew 13:55 and “other similar verses” (you did not give them) to prove that Mary had other children are inconclusive on the matter. Evangelical David Gustafson said: “I admit that the Gospel accounts are not absolutely decisive on this point” [Dwight Longenecker and David Gustafson, Mary – A Catholic-Evangelical Debate (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Brazos Press, 2003) p. 69]. Hence, if the Gospel accounts (like Matthew 13:55 and Mark 6:3) are not absolutely decisive (as admitted even by your fellow evangelical) on whether Mary had other children, then you have to show me verses that are absolutely decisive on the matter. I have always insisted that you show me verses in the Bible that say that “Mary had other children aside from Jesus” and “Mary is the mother of the brothers and sisters of Jesus.” These, I believe, would be absolutely decisive on the matter.

I know about the Roman Catholic defense about the Jews having the same Hebrew terminology for brother and relatives, ach.

Good for you! At least it shows that you are researching on the Roman Catholic defense. As I pointed out to Dr. Pezzotta (which you omitted in your quote), “[t]he word “brother” or “sister” was a common Hebrew expression which had an encompassing meaning. There was no term for cousins in Hebrew. They were only “ach” (Hebrew) or “ah” (Aramaic) which refers to brothers, cousins, close relatives or kinsman.”

We know very well that the New Testament was written in Greek and adelphos is the term they use to refer to a brother while anepsios for relatives.

In the New Testament, which was written in Greek, adelphos is the term used for “brother.” But “brother” refers to so many things, not just siblings. Hence, your statement is inaccurate.

You also demonstrated ignorance of Biblical Greek when you said that anepsios is used for relatives. If you researched a little bit more, you could have easily ascertained that anepsios literally means cousin and not relative. Also, you would have known that the Greek for relative or kinsman is suggenis.

Despite the Greek word used and the context, you still contend that it is not referring to uterine brothers.

I already explained that the Greek word used, adelphos, refers to so many things. That Greek word has various meanings and cannot be restricted to uterine brothers (siblings) alone. My contention is that the word “brother” is not always referring to uterine brothers. I think that you agree with me because in your conclusion you categorically admitted –

I do agree that the word brother does have a lot of meanings in the Bible.  But, we simply cannot pick one definition because it suits our beliefs.  Let the Bible speak for itself.

It is you who are picking one definition over the others because it suits your beliefs.

What exactly is the context of Matthew 13:55-56 which you did not bother to explain?

My understanding of the context of the pericope in Mathew 13:55-56 and its parallel in Mark 6:3 is as what R.T. France puts it: “To the people of Nazareth, Jesus is the local boy, and they know of no reason why he should have turned out to be any different from the rest of his family” [The Gospel of Mark: A Commentary on the Greek Text, New International Greek Testament Commentary (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans, 2002) p. 242].

Prof. Tim Perry likewise states:

The simplest understanding is best. Jesus is “the carpenter, the son of Mary,” a local manual laborer whose father had died some years back. We may paraphrase their exclamation to reflect its small-town gossipy nature: “Who is this guy? Is he not the carpenter? You know, Mary’s boy?” The description says little about Mary …” [Tim Perry, Mary for Evangelicals (Downer’s Grove, Illinois: Inter Varsity Press, 2006) p. 38].

You argued:

It should be borne in mind that it is part of the culture in Palestine even to this day that people who are related by blood live in a given community. They practice communal living (“kibbutz” system).

The Evangelists and other New Testament writers simply wrote down the common expression of the Jews. They had the Jewish mindset although they wrote in Greek. In other words, the Evangelists were using the common parlance among the Jews at that time. Jesus, James, Joses, Judas and Simon simply called each other “ah.” They knew that Jesus was an only child and assumed every body else knew.

Indeed, I provided the cultural note above. If you don’t agree with that, please show me proofs to the contrary. Prove to me that –

1. It is not part of the culture in Palestine even to this day that people who are related by blood live in a given community;

2. That the people in Palestine do not practice communal living (“kibbutz” system);

3. The Evangelists and other New Testament writers did not simply write down the common expression of the Jews;

4. That they did not have the Jewish mindset although they wrote in Greek;

5. The Evangelists were not using the common parlance among the Jews at that time;

6. That Jesus, James, Joses, Judas and Simon did not simply call each other “ah;”

7. That the Evangelists and New Testament writers did not know that Jesus was an only child and assumed every body else knew.

You that you did not deny, much less refute, the cultural note that I provided. Instead, you said –

If your argument is based on the kibbutz system, then Matthew left something out in 13:55 and 56?  It mentions Christ’s parents and proceeds to detail his supposedly cousins.  If neighbor’s account of Christ’s family was indeed based on communal living like you theorized, how come the parents of James, Joses, Judas, Simon and the sisters are not mentioned?  Did the neighbor who questioned (sic) Jesus forget about Cleophas and his wife Mary whom you said are the parents of James and Joses?  It’s a bit illogical to mention Christ’s parents and then proceed immediately to cousins by overlooking the parents of those cousins who are supposed to be in the kibbutz system.

I said that people [in Palestine] who are related by blood live in a given community. Do you object to Mary, Jesus, James, Joses, Judas and Simon living in the same community? Where else would they have lived?

The parents of James, Joses, Judas as well as the sisters of Jesus are not mentioned because it is not necessary to do so. If Matthew left them out, it simply means that it was not his intention to list down all the relatives of Jesus who lived in the same community as His. Matthew was not doing a census of all those who lived in Jesus’ community! It sufficed for Matthew (as well as for Jesus’ neighbors Matthew quoted) to name at least some of Jesus close relatives who were at least clearly identified with Him (perhaps belonging to the same age group). If indeed it was the intention of Jesus’ neighbors (and Matthew) to name each and every relative of Jesus, they should have named his sisters as well. These sisters have never been identified. Why have they been left out if the purpose Matthew was to detail or enumerate all the members of Christ’s family? Have the neighbors of Jesus forgotten their names? Did they also forget the name of Joseph, the Lord’s putative father?

For not mentioning the name of Cleophas and his wife Mary, the parents of James and Joses, did the neighbor of Jesus forget them? Not necessarily. It was not their intention to mention or enumerate every Tom, Dick and Harry in Jesus’ family tree. If they did not bother to mention the names of Joseph and the sisters of Jesus, then it would be expecting them too much to mention Jesus uncles and aunts. In that case, you would have to amend Matthew 13:55-56, thus: “Isn’t this the son of Joseph the carpenter? Isn’t his mother’s name Mary, and aren’t his bother James, Joseph, Simon and Judas? Isn’t Cleophas his uncle and Mary his aunt? Isn’t not Joachim his grandfather and Anna his grandmother? Aren’t all his sisters Aida, Lorna and Fe with us? Where did this man get all these things.”

You argued that “it’s a bit illogical to mention Christ’s parents and then proceed immediately to cousins by overlooking the parents of those cousins who are supposed to be in the kibbutz system.” Where’s the illogicality there? What canon of logic has been violated? As already stated, it was not the intention of Jesus neighbors to list all the possible relatives of Jesus but just a representative of them, those that Our Lord may have been best identified with. Jesus’ neighbors were not taking a roll call or doing a census.

To follow your line of reasoning, it is even more “illogical” to mention first Christ’s “cousins” (James and Joses) before His real “brothers” or siblings. If at least the first two of the so-called “brothers” of Jesus are actually his cousins, your contention that all the “brothers” of Christ in Matthew 13:55-56 are His siblings is severely diluted, nay refuted.

2. Moving on, one of my tendencies (sic) to quote Paul for using anepsios in Colossians 4:10 to say that the NT writers in fact made a distinction between siblings and relatives despite of their audience …

Again, your ignorance of Greek shows. Anepsios literally means cousin and not relative. The Greek word for relative is suggenis and not anepsios. That you made this blunder twice in your email indicates the very low quality of your research.

Granting that your translation of Greek is correct (that anepsios indeed translates to relatives), you made a sweeping statement and hasty generalization when you argued that Paul’s use of anepsios in Colossians 4:10 proves that “the NT writers” (plural) “made a distinction between siblings and relatives despite of their audience.”

Can you explain grammatically why one person (singular) could qualify as “New Testament writers” (plural)?

… but you had this argument:

It should be borne in mind that it is only in Colossians 4:10 that the word anepsios is used. Remember that the Epistle to the Colossians was written by the Apostle Paul, a Jew from Tarsus (Acts 21:39, 22:3) who was in fact a Roman citizen (Acts 22:25 -29). The Apostle Paul wrote to the Colossians (who were certainly not Jews but Gentiles) in their own Greek language.

The Jews, unlike the Greeks, use circumlocution to express their idea or concept of cousin for the simple reason that they have no word for cousin.

I made those observations. Which of these do you find incorrect or objectionable:

1. Anepsios is used only in Colossians 4:10;

2. The Epistle to the Colossians was written by the Apostle Paul;

3. Paul was a Jew from Tarsus (Acts 21:39; 22:3);

4. Paul was a Roman citizen (Acts 22:25-29);

5. The Colossians were not Jews but Gentiles;

6. Paul wrote to them in their own Greek language;

7. The Jews, unlike the Greeks, use circumlocution to express their idea or concept of cousin;

8. The Jews have no word for cousin.

Which of the foregoing is wrong?

I also note that you chopped off the remainder of my paragraph where I gave an example of circumlocution in Leviticus 25:49 which mentions “uncle’s son” instead of cousin. In the following paragraph, I cited Acts 23:16 which mentions “Paul sister’s son” instead of “Paul’s nephew.” Also, in Judges 9:3 I noted that “mother’s brethren” is mentioned instead of “uncles” and “aunts.”

As I understood it, you argue that if the NT writers are speaking to Jews they use circumlocution, while not so if speaking to Gentiles.

As you understood it! Well, your understanding is WRONG! If you’ve only read my statement carefully, there is nothing there that says that when the NT writers are speaking to the Jews they use circumlocution while not so if speaking to Gentiles. Your assumption is simply false.

Since your understanding is wrong, then all your conclusions are wrong.

For me, your argument has gone too far to the point of being biased.

That is your opinion. Your accusation that I am biased has no leg to stand on because you started from the wrong premise.

I don’t think you will be consistent when your theory is compared with other verses.

This is already nonsense considering that you started from erroneous premise. Since the water cannot rise higher than its source, perforce all the rest of your arguments are wrong.

If I were to quote Galatians 1:19 which says: But I did not see any other of the apostles, only James the brother (adelphos) of the Lord, how come Paul made use of adelphos instead of anepsios to the Greek-speaking Galatians? Why only to the Colossians did Paul make use of anepsios?

Because James has been known in the early Church as the “brother of the Lord” and there was no need or reason for Paul to change that appellation. Moreover, my reading of early Church history yields no indication that the early Christians understood James’ title of “brother of the Lord” to mean sibling [cf. Eusebius, The History of the Church (London: Penguin Books, 1989) pp. 30, 35-36, 107].

The reference to James as adelphos of the Lord in Galatians 1:9 is not conclusive proof that James is the Lord’s uterine brother. Prof. Tim Perry admits –

“It is, after all, widely agreed that the semantic range of adelphos encompasses meanings ranging from the common ideological and religious adherences to various family relations. While Paul is not using “brother to refer to James and Jesus’ common religion, it is not clear that he means uterine brother; legitimate alternatives are “cousin” or “stepbrother.” Context (Gal. 1:11-24) does not permit a final determination. That James and Jesus are from the same family is indubitable; that they are both children of Mary is possible but not established. Thus this verse alone does not refute ancient beliefs regarding Mary’s perpetual virginity. On the other hand it underscores Paul’s assumption that the Savior is, in fact, a human being” [Tim Perry, Mary for Evangelicals (Downer’s Grove, Illinois: Inter Varsity Press, 2006) pp. 27-28].

Furthermore, why was James called as “the brother of the Lord”?  You never mentioned the reason.

I think I did. I mentioned that “Jesus, James, Joses, Judas and Simon simply called each other “ah” (“brother”). I also said that James was known as “the Brother of the Lord” to the early Christian community in Jerusalem. Hence, Paul referred to him as such. But then again, there is no indication that the early Christians understood James’ title to mean that he is Jesus’ sibling.

How about Luke?  According to the Catholic Encyclopedia he is both Greek and Gentile.

I doubt it if you’ve really read the Catholic Encyclopedia. If you did, you should have cited the volume and the page so we can verify your source. Nevertheless, go ahead and read it online at www.newadvent.org.

A Greek is always a Gentile. It’s either you are a Jew or a Gentile. So, if you are Greek, you are automatically a Gentile! Isn’t that so?

The Catholic Encyclopedia would not have made that mistake as you did. I thought that you merely committed a typographical error. However, when you posted in your blog your email to me, I noticed that you did not correct it. So, I am of the impression that you really think that Luke is indeed both Greek and Gentile! I checked the online Catholic Encyclopedia but I couldn’t find anything there that says that Luke is “both Greek and Gentile” as you alleged (see: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/09420a.htm)

The Catholic Encyclopedia informs us: St. Luke was a native of Antioch, the capital of Syria. He was by profession a physician; and some ancient writers say, that he was very skillful in painting. He was converted by St. Paul and became his disciple and companion in his travels, and fellow-labourer in the ministry of the Gospel. He wrote in Greek, about twenty-four years after our Lord’s Ascension (http://www.newadvent.org/bible/luk000.htm)

His books were written to Theophilus, who may be another Greek.

That Theophilus as you said “may be another Greek” is a mere supposition. You did not adduce proof that Theophilus is indeed Greek.

Theophilus may have been a Roman official –

“The Gospel of Luke is addressed to Theophilus with the expression: “most excellent Theophilus” (Luke 1:3). This phrasing indicates that Theophilus was a Roman official, and not merely a friend or associate of Luke.

Luke’s Gospel and Acts are both addressed to the same Roman official, Theophilus. Luke uses the formal term “most excellent” to address Theophilus in his Gospel (Lk 1:3). This language was commonly used in addressing Roman officials. Examples of this same expression are found in Acts, where it is used to address both Felix and Festus (Acts 24:2; 26:25). But, at the beginning of Acts, Luke no longer calls Theophilus “most excellent Theophilus,” instead he calls him “O Theophilus” (Lk 1:3; Acts 1:1). This indicates that Theophilus was no longer in office by the time that Luke was writing, or had completed writing, Acts. Yet Luke still addresses Acts to Theophilus. Luke must still have been living in the same area, where Theophilus still had continued respect and some unofficial authority. Minor Roman officials often held office for only a year. Theophilus could have been proconsul of Achaia, the region in which Saint Jerome tells us Luke was living when he wrote the Gospel, or he could have held some other office within the region of Achaia or Boeotia (but there is no direct historical evidence as to where Theophilus held office).” (http://www.catholicplanet.com/TSM/NT-Luke.htm)

It also possible that Theophilus may be a codename for all those who love God –

“Why would Almighty God allow two inspired works of Sacred Scripture to be addressed to a minor Roman official named Theophilus? From a spiritual point of view, the Gospel of Luke and Acts of the Apostles were both addressed to the name ‘Theophilus’ because of the meaning of that name, not because of the individual with that name. The name Theophilus means “one who loves God;” ‘Theo’ refers to God (as in ‘Theology’), and ‘philus’ is from the Greek word ‘philos’ meaning ‘to love.’ So, Luke’s Gospel is addressed, in the spiritual sense, not to one Roman official, but to all those who love God. Luke’s Gospel was not written only or primarily for the Hebrews, who converted to Christ, but for all who love God, including the Gentiles.” (http://www.catholicplanet.com/TSM/NT-Luke.htm)

If we read Acts 1:14 it appears that he didn’t use anepsios like Paul did in Colossians.

Luke used adelphoi in Acts 1:14. He also used the same word in Acts 1:16 when Peter addressed the 120 believers (Acts 1:15). If the word “brothers” would always be taken to mean as siblings of Jesus and children of Mary, it would appear that Mary had 120 children other than Jesus! What a reproductive and gynecological feat for Mary!

Levity aside, the use of adelphoi and not anepsios in Acts 1:15

Since Luke is both Greek and Gentile, don’t you think he would use anepsios more often than the Jewish NT writers?

Here, you repeated the same blunder that Luke is both Greek and Gentile.

Nevertheless, it is picayune to nitpick on Luke’s diction, especially his choice of adelphos over anepsios in reference to the blood relatives of Jesus Christ. In fact, as you miserably failed to realize, anepsios doesn’t even mean relative – it literally means cousin. Nevertheless, Luke’s use of adelphos rather than anepsios to refer to the blood relatives of Jesus does not conclusively refute our position that the so-called brothers of Jesus in Acts 1:14 (and elsewhere) are not His siblings. For at any rate, even scholars admit that legitimate alternatives for brother (adelphos) are “cousin” or “stepbrother” [See: άδελφός in James H. Moulton and George Milligan, The Vocabulary of the Greek New Testament (London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1930), pp. 8-9]. Prof. Tim Perry also concedes that it is “grammatically possible to argue that adelphoi means “cousins” [Tim Perry, Mary for Evangelicals (Downer’s Grove, Illinois: Inter Varsity Press, 2006) p. 35].

3. You also made an account of the supposedly cousins of Jesus. About Jude, you mentioned that he was a brother of James and a son of Mary the wife of Cleophas.

I did. I stated that Jude (Judas) is identified as the brother of James in Acts 1:13 who was in the Upper Room together with the other apostles after the ascension of Our Lord. Jude never identified himself as the “brother of Jesus” but merely as the “brother of James” (Jude 1:1). I posited that if Jude wanted to establish his credibility with the early Church, he should have name-dropped Jesus by calling himself the “brother of Jesus” and not merely the “brother of James” because being a brother of Jesus is certainly more prestigious than being a mere brother of James.

I stated in my footnote that early Church historian Eusebius of Caesaria mentioned that Hegesippus “says that there were also others, descended from one of the so-called brothers of the Savior, whose name was Judas, who after they had borne testimony before Domitian, as has already been recorded, in behalf of faith in Christ, lived until the same reign” [Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, 3:32, see: Eusebius, The History of the Church (London: Penguin Books, 1989) p. 95].

I concluded that Jude’s mother was also Mary, the wife of Cleophas and not Mary, the mother of Jesus. Hence, he, too, is Jesus “brother” because he is his “cousin.”

But how come he wasn’t mentioned in Mark 15:40 but only James and Joses?

Because that is not necessary for Mark’s purpose. Mark’s purpose was merely to identify the women who were watching from a distance the crucifixion scene. “Some women were watching from a distance, among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James the younger and of Joses, and Salome” (Mark 15:40). It is not the intention of Mark to name all the children of Mary. It suffices for his purpose to identify who that Mary is. Just because Mary is said to be the mother of James and Joses doesn’t necessarily mean that she’s no longer the mother of Jude.

Let’s also not forget about Simon.  Your sources tell you that he was also a son of Mary the wife Cleophas.

No, we aren’t forgetting Simon. You are correct that my sources tell me that he was also a son of Mary the wife of Cleophas. I based my conclusion that Simon is also a son of Mary the wife of Cleophas from early church history.

The historian Hegessipus mentioned that Simon, son Cleophas, one of the Lord’s brothers, replaced James the Just as Bishop of Jerusalem. Eusebius of Caesaria quotes Hegessipus: “In the course of it Symeon [also spelled Simon], son of Clopas [also spelled Cleophas], the second to be appointed Bishop of Jerusalem, as already stated, is known to have ended his life by martyrdom. The authority for this statement is the writer to whose history I have appealed several times already, Hegessipus” [Eusebius, The History of the Church (London: Penguin Books, 1989) p. 95].

Church historian Eusebius of Caesaria further reports that “after James the Just had suffered martyrdom, as the Lord had also on the same account, Symeon, the son of the Lord’s uncle, Clopas, was appointed the next bishop. All proposed him as second bishop because he was a cousin of the Lord” [Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, 4:22; see: The History of the Church (London: Penguin Books, 1989) p. 129].

Eusebius narrates that “Symeon was one of those that saw and heard the Lord, judging from the length of his life, and from the fact that the Gospel makes mention of Mary, the wife of Clopas, who was the father of Symeon, as has been already shown. The same historian (Hegessipus) says that there were also others, descended from one of the so-called brothers of the Savior, whose name was Judas, who after they had borne testimony before Domitian, as has already been recorded, in behalf of faith in Christ, lived until the same reign” [Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, 3:32; see: The History of the Church (London: Penguin Books, 1989) p. 95].

The same early church historian further states that “Symeon ruled the Church of Jerusalem affter the martyrdom of James and the conquest of Jerusalem which immediately followed, it is said that those of the apostles and disciples of the Lord that were still living came together from all the directions with those that were related to the Lord according to the flesh to take counsel as to who was worthy to succeed James. They all with one consent pronounced Symeon, the son of Clopas, of whom the Gospel makes mention, to be the worthy of the Episcopal throne of that parish. He was a cousin, they say, of the Savior” [Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, 3:11; see: The History of the Church (London: Penguin Books, 1989) p. 79].

Again, how come Mark left him out in 15:40?  Can you explain that?

I can. As I stated earlier, Mark’s purpose in 15:40 was merely to identify the women at the crucifixion scene. It was not the intention of the evangelist to list all the children of Mary. His intention was to identify who that Mary is and to differentiate her from the other Marys at the foot of the cross. Just because Mary is said to be the mother of James and Joses doesn’t necessarily mean that she’s no longer the mother of Simon.

Again, Mark’s concern was to identify the women and not all their children.

You seem to be fond of the “left out” argument without realizing that it boomerangs on you. Applying your own argument, why is Mary referred to only as “the mother of Jesus” (John 2:1,3; Acts 1:14)? Did John and Luke forget that Mary had other children, namely James, Joses, Jude and Simon? Why did these two evangelists leave out James, Joses, Jude and Simon?

If you are correct that James, Joses, Jude and Simon were also children of Mary, why did John and Luke say that Mary is “the mother of Jesus” when they can very well say that Mary is “the mother of Jesus, James, Jude, Simon, et al.?” Can you explain that?

Remember that all throughout the New Testament, Mary has often been referred to as the mother of Jesus (John. 2:1,3; Acts 1:14) or His mother (Matthew. 1:18; 2:11,13,14,20,21; 12:46, 51; Mark 3:31; Luke. 2:33,34,43,48; 8:19; John. 2:5,12; 19:25,26) and the mother of My Lord (Luke 1:43. Nowhere in these instances is Mary ever called the mother of anyone. So my challenge to you still remains. Cite to me verses that say that “Mary had other children aside from Jesus” and that “Mary is the mother of the brothers of Jesus.”

I do agree that the word brother does have a lot of meanings in the Bible.  But, we simply cannot pick one definition because it suits our beliefs.

My point precisely. It’s you who limit “brothers” to siblings because it suits your beliefs.

Let the Bible speak for itself.

I say Amen!

That’s all what I have for now.  Should you feel like responding please take your time.  God bless you.

Sincerely,

Gerald

Thank you for allowing me to take my time to respond to your questions. Like John, “I have much to write you, but I do not want to do so with pen and ink. I hope to see you soon, and we will talk face to face” (3 John 13).

Thus, I look forward to debating you personally on the issue of Mary’s perpetual virginity. I authorize the Chairman of Defensores Fidei Foundation to negotiate with you or the Bereans to work out the details of our debate.

Until then.

In Christ,

Bro. Marwil N. Llasos

One Response to “BRO. MARS ANSWERS RODIMUS OF THE BEREANS”

  1. A very objective discussion. I would love to read the rest as it develops.

    Johnson C. Philip, PhD (Physics)
    India

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