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RODIMUS APOLOGIZED, I ACCEPTED IT AS A CHRISTIAN!

Posted by catholicfaithdefender on March 16, 2009

RODIMUS APOLOGIZED, I ACCEPTED IT AS A CHRISTIAN!

By: Fr. Abe Arganiosa, CRS

Link: http://thesplendorofthechurch.blogspot.com/2009/03/rodimus-apologized-i-accept-as.html

In an unexpected gesture Bro. Rodimus apologized on the issue of John 4:5 and John 1:1. Once apology is given the love of Christ urges us to accept it. It is a command of charity then to return love for love and from then on walk in the light of Peace. Let us praise the Lord, not because Bro. Rodimus apologized, but because His truth is setting us free. Truly, His great love is without end.
Here is the apology of Bro. Rodimus and followed by my own posted in his blog comment section:
Friday, March 13, 2009

An apology to all

After much consideration on the facts, I hereby admit that I stand corrected on John 4:5 and John 1:1 as well. The posts have been deleted.
Furthermore, I apologize to Defensores Fidei Foundation especially to Atty. Marwil Llasos, Fr. Abe Arganiosa, and Mr. Cenon Bibe for the things I said about them. I was supposed to exchange information instead I ended up trash talking about yourselves. Please forgive my arrogance and sarcasm. So I therefore take back what I said.
I apologize to my colleagues for I went rogue and acted on my own. You don’t have to be held accountable for my actions.
I’m sorry, everyone.
1 comments:
Fr. Abe, CRS said…
DEAR BRO. RODIMUS,
GRACE AND PEACE!
ON MY PART, I ALSO APOLOGIZE FOR CAUSING SO MUCH HURT TO YOUR HEART AND MIND. EVEN THOUGH I DO NOT KNOW YOUR PERSONAL IDENTITY I’M SURE YOU HAVE BEEN WOUNDED BY MY VERY STRONG REMARKS.NOW, AFTER ALL IS SAID AND DONE LET US BE CHRISTIAN TO EACH OTHER. I HOPE YOU ARE ACCEPTING MY OFFER TO STOP THE MANNER OF TREATING EACH OTHER AND LET US BE WORTHY TO BE CALLED ‘CHILDREN OF GOD’.VERY EARLY THIS MORNING, ABOUT 12:10AM I RECEIVED A TEXT FROM MR. HENRY SY, THE PRESIDENT OF DEFENSORES FIDEI, AND HE ADMONISHED ME TO BE MORE CHARITABLE TO YOU. I PROMISED HIM THAT I WILL OBEY HIS DIRECTION SINCE I HAVE TO SHOW EXAMPLE OF OBEDIENCE TO OUR LEADERSHIP.BROTHER, THE CATHOLICS ARE ALSO BIBLE CHRISTIANS. AS YOU CAN SEE IN OUR EXCHANGES AND IN YOUR FORUM WE ARE USING THE SAME BIBLICAL TEXTS AND WE SIMPLY DIFFER IN INTERPRETING THEM. I HOPE YOU WILL CHANGE YOUR VIEW ON CATHOLICISM BEING UNBIBLICAL.MAY THE GOD OF PEACE REIGN IN OUR HEARTS.
N.B.: I capitalized my message for stressing my points and not for any emotional outburst. He,he,he…
Yours in Christ Jesus,
Rev. Fr. Abe P. Arganiosa, CRS

March 13, 2009 6:26 PM

Posted in Bereans, Debate, Doctrinal Comparison, Frequently Asked Questions, THE CATHOLIC CHURCH HAS THE ANSWER, Virgin Mary | 4 Comments »

RIDICULOUS ANSWERS OF THE BEREANS APOLOGETICS

Posted by catholicfaithdefender on March 12, 2009

RIDICULOUS ANSWERS OF THE BEREANS APOLOGETICS By Atty. Marwil Llasos

Link: http://thesplendorofthechurch.blogspot.com/2009/03/ridiculous-answers-of-bereans.html

Madonna and Child by Michelangelo

Little learning is a dangerous thing. This adage is once again proven true by the way the Bereans Apologetics and Research Ministry (Bereans) answers questions. They showed their limited capacity for higher level thinking and demonstrated beyond any iota of doubt their Biblical illiteracy. Eliseo Soriano and his co-horts will surely have a run for their money!

In the Berean’s rebuttal to my article on perpetual virginity, its moderator, official spokesperson and representative named GERALD a.k.a. RODIMUS magnificently displayed the Bereans’ sloppy research and shallow reasoning.

Below is our exchange. Rodimus’ words are in red while mine are in black. Blue stands for the words I used in my past article. I ask the reader to judge who presents more substantial arguments and who displays little learning.

Atty. Llasos further attempted to refute my consideration of Matthew 13:55 as comprehensive by saying:

In fact, a parallel verse in Mark 6:3 refers to Jesus as “THE son of Mary.” The article “the” is significant in Greek because it signifies “the one and only.” Jesus, being the Son of Mary, means that He is Mary’s only Son in the same manner that Jesus, being the Son of God, means that he is the only-begotten Son of the Father.

While the article “the” can signify the one and only, it doesn’t always mean that way in other sentences. In John 4:5, Joseph is mentioned to be THE SON of Jacob, are we to conclude that Jacob had no other children?

In my refutation of Rodimus’ supposition that Matthew 13:55 as “comprehensive” in proving that Mary had other children, I did raise the issue of the use of the definite article “the” as an added proof that “Jesus, being the Son of Mary, means that He is Mary’s only Son in the same manner that Jesus, being the Son of God, means that he is the only-begotten Son of the Father.”

I mentioned the use of “the” in Mark 6:3 merely as one of the cumulative evidence for the Catholic position that Jesus is Mary’s only Child. I don’t rest my case on that argument alone; I pointed out its significance. As Rodimus himself admitted, “the article ‘the’ can signify the one and only, it doesn’t always mean that way in other sentences.” Yes, but its significance cannot be discounted.

I believe that “Jesus’ unique Sonship from Mary reflects His unique Sonship in eternity. Christ is the only-begotten Son of the Father, who begets Him eternally without the help of a mother. He is also the only Son of Mary, who conceives Him in time without the help of a man.”

My view that the perpetual virginity of Mary points to the uniqueness of Jesus Christ finds support from formidable authors of impeccable credentials. Rodimus cannot hold a candle beside these scholars because his credentials, if any, are light years away from those of evangelical Prof. Tim Perry and (formerly) Protestant Jaroslav Pelikan.

Prof Tim Perry is on record as saying that “Like her virginity ante partum and in partu, Mary’s post partum virginity’s most powerful support derives from the uniqueness of Jesus” [Tim Perry, Mary for Evangelicals (Downer’s Grove, Illinois: Inter Varsity Press, 2006) p. 282]. He concluded that “[i]n the divine economy, the corollary of the ontological description ‘only begotten God’ is ‘ever-virgin’ (aeiparthenos; semper virgo)” [ibid, p. 283].

For Jaroslav Pelikan, “the eternal begetting of the second person of the holy Trinity should be mirrored in his incarnate life: “He [is] the single and only begotten Son of God [and] also the single and only begotten Son of Mary” [Jaroslav Pelikan, “Most Generations Shall Call Me Blessed,” in Mary: Mother of God, ed. Carl E. Braaten and Robert W. Jenson (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans, 2004) p. 8].

That Jesus is the only Child of the Blessed Virgin Mary is underscored by the fact that He is always referred to as “THE” Son of Mary. The article “the” [“ho” – the Greek letter o’ (o with the iota subscript)] is significant in Greek because it signifies “the one and only.” For instance, ho theos refers to the oneness or unicity of God: there is only one God. Thus, ho huios means that Jesus is the only Son of Mary just as He is the only Son of God.

Let us now consider the Bible verses we cited. I used Mark 6:3 while Rodimus used John 4:5.

Mark 6:3 is rendered in Greek (Romanized, for easy reading) “ouch houtos estin ho tektOn ho huios tEs marias kai erchetai oun eis polin tEs samareias legomenEn suchar plEsion tou chOriou ho edOken iakOb [tO] iOsEph tO huiO autou.”

In John 4:5 where Joseph is mentioned to be “the Son” of Jacob is rendered differently: “adelphos iakObou kai iOsEtos kai iouda kai simOnos kai ouk eisin hai adelphai autou hOde pros hEmas kai eskandalizonto en auto.”

I don’t think I clearly saw “ho huious” in John 4:5 in reference to Joseph “the son” of Jacob which Rodimus used to counter my use of Mark 6:3 (which clearly mentions “ho huios”). In the New International Version, evangelicals’ favorite translation, John 4:5 is rendered: “So he came to a town in Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of ground Jacob had given to his son Joseph.” I also didn’t see the expression Joseph “the son” of Jacob. So also in the Revised Standard Version, the expression “the son” of Jacob is conspicuously absent: “So he came to a city in Samaria, called Sychar, near the field that Jacob gave to his son Joseph.”

Moreover, Jesus was referred as “a son” in Luke 1:31 and not “your only child,” so why not conclude Mary has other children subsequent to Christ?

Here’s where the Bereans’ little learning is most dangerous!

Let’s read Luke 1:31: “You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus.”

Note that in the verse above, the expression “Jesus, the son of Mary” is not used. The obvious sense that Luke 1:31 conveys is that the angel is announcing to Mary that she is giving birth to a SON, not a DAUGHTER! [Cf. Rev. 12:5 – She gave birth to a son, a male child, who will rule all the nations with an iron scepter.”] So, Mary is going to give birth to a son, meaning a male child – and not a daughter or a female child!

Also, since Mary is giving birth to a son, it means that she’s not giving birth to a twin, a triplet or a quadruplet but just a son!

Notice how ridiculous the Bereans argue! I really couldn’t help myself but to laugh out loud with the Bereans’ pathetic argumentation. They are so desperate that they don’t realize that they are making a fool out of themselves! They have made themselves into a laughingstock!

When will you ever learn? When will you ever learn?

Posted in Bereans, Debate, Doctrinal Comparison, Frequently Asked Questions, THE CATHOLIC CHURCH HAS THE ANSWER, Virgin Mary | Leave a Comment »

THE LATEST NEWS ON RODIMUS THE COWARD

Posted by catholicfaithdefender on March 12, 2009

THE LATEST NEWS ON RODIMUS THE COWARD

Link: http://thesplendorofthechurch.blogspot.com/2009/03/latest-news-on-rodimus-coward.html

St. Paul courageously preached the Faith without having any mask on his face and identity… right Rodimus?

Atty. Marwil Llasos intensified his bombardment of RODIMUS THE COWARD, one of the moderators of the Berean Forum. It is very interesting to note that after severe beating from Bro. Cenon Bibe right in his own Blog and the siege of Bro. Mars this Rodimus, the cowardly heretic, hid himself for a week.
The reason is, first, to avoid the shame handed on his ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE due to his obsessive use of ROBOTIC, i.e., ARTIFICIAL, a.k.a., FAKE IDENTITY which serves as his MASK and DEFENSE MECHANISM. Second, to avoid another shame for his failure to prove that the meaning of ADELPHOI is limited to ‘Uterine Brothers’. Third, DUE TO EXCESSIVE FEAR CAUSED BY THE CHALLENGE ISSUED BY ATTY. MARS FOR ONE ON ONE, FACE TO FACE, PUBLIC DEBATE. It is interesting that when Bro. Jub Alabastro of Catholic Faith Defenders – Davao questioned Rodimus the Coward if he will accept debate challenge, the cowardly heretic responded cunningly like a serpent. He said that he is willing to face anyone at the right time and right circumstances. Of course, it means that he doesn’t want to face anybody because HE IS THE ONLY ONE WHO CAN DETERMINE THE RIGHT TIME AND THE RIGHT CIRCUMSTANCES that he himself will set. He,he,he… To prove my point when Bro. Jub tried to clarify the matter true enough to his COWARDLY NATURE the Fake Robot was silent for more than a week. Ha,ha,ha…
Yesterday, he re-appeared… at last… after deafening silence and non-existence. Instead of answering the issue at bar RODIMUS THE COWARD RETREATED FROM THE TOPIC OF PERPETUAL VIRGINITY OF MARY. Instead, he entered into the IMMACULATE CONCEPTION issue with a very clumsy reasoning on Tertulian. OBVIOUSLY, THE REPUTATION OF THIS RODIMUS THE COWARD AND HIS ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE ARE CRUMBLING LIKE CRACKERS THAT THEY ARE USING DURING THEIR BREAKING OF THE BREAD FELLOWSHIP TOGETHER WITH GRAPE JUICE WHICH IS A FAKE REPLACEMENT FOR THE GRAPE WINE USED BY THE LORD IN LAST SUPPER.
Another very intersting fact is that this cowardly heretic claims to be an Accountant… with his reasoning it’s doubtful. And, he claims that he started getting involved in Apologetics since high school by answering his English teacher who is a devout Roman Catholic: “I have been involved in apologetics since high school. It all started when I reasoned with a teacher in English who is a very devout Roman Catholic. I had limited resources at that time. But as the years went by, God used men with wisdom to train me to defend the faith. Here I am now in the spiritual battleground defending Biblical Christianity and refuting false religions. ” For sure the Catholic teacher must be very happy now because the student who used to reason with him or her with courage in front of the class is now a CERTIFIED AND AUDITED COWARD!!! How about those ‘men with wisdom’ who trained him to defend he faith? Are they happy now that their protege is so cowardly? Or may be they are the one who taught him to attack the faith of others while hiding his identity. Most probably he got this treachery, this cunning-serpentine technique from his mentors. Very probable! Isn’t it?
Another development is that FELLOW BEREANS ARE DUMPING THIS RODIMUS THE COWARD like a rotten potato… I mean ‘Bagoong‘… ‘Bagoong Isda‘. It is clearly manifested by the fact that none of his so-called cohorts are nowhere in sight to argue with him and cross swords with Catholic Apologists side by side with their cowardly colleague. I was informed by very reliable sources that his fellow Berean moderator named Justyn [whom I was told is a very charitable man… Praise the Lord… if it is true] stated that: “He doesn’t belong to the same Church with Rodimus!” It means that the Faith and Church affiliations of the Bereans are different. They are divided by Faith and are lacking Ecclesial Unity. Anyway this is not big news just by analyzing their reasoning in various posts of their forum it is discernible that they belong to different and competing branches of Protestantism.
Rodimus the Coward should have imitated the attitude of Justyn who is not attacking the Catholic Faith bigotedly. Much more he has the courage to face our leaders in a man-like manner. He appeared in person and dialogue in person. In return we accord him with respect proper for a person and a brother in Christ. But if one will use a MASK and intensely attack our faith in an ungetlemanly manner… ho, ho, ho… he’d better use the face and the identity of his pet dog.

Posted in Bereans, Debate, Doctrinal Comparison, THE CATHOLIC CHURCH HAS THE ANSWER, Virgin Mary | Leave a Comment »

BRO. CENON BIBE MAKING A MINCE MEAT OUT OF RODIMUS THE COWARD

Posted by catholicfaithdefender on March 10, 2009

BRO. CENON BIBE MAKING A MINCE MEAT OUT OF RODIMUS THE COWARD

Link: http://thesplendorofthechurch.blogspot.com/2009/03/bro-cenon-bibe-making-mince-meat-out-of.html

Ever since Rodimus the Coward of the Bereans intensified his attack against the Catholic Faith and the Catholic apologetic group Defensores Fidei Foundation he found himself under heavy bombardment from various Catholic apologists. What incensed us is the fact that this Rodimus [I am not sure what he is. He claims to be a Robot so I consider him as ARTIFICIAL HUMAN BEING] issues terrible claims to the point of distorting historical truths and Biblical scholarships and is not ashamed of them because he is wearing a MASK.
Like a Demon who appears and disappears this Rodimus must be held accountable for the lies and distortions he is presenting on the net. I have slapped his artificial face on this Blog, Atty. Marwil Llasos brilliantly showed his ignorance and stupidities and here Bro. Cenon will show you his shallowness.
This exchange happened right in Rodimus’ own Blog.

Cenon Bibe Jr. said… I am not surprised by what RODIMUS did. I know of many “evangelicals” who also insist on seeing contradictions where there are none.
Why do they do such a thing?
What I have seen is that such evangelicals are so desperate to find fault in the Catholic Church that they invent discrepancies and attribute these to Catholics … in this case, to Catholic apologists.
And that has led me to seriously question the integrity of such so-called evangelicals: Who are they serving?
By creating lies just so they could attack it with more lies, do they serve the God of truth? Are they guided by the Spirit of Truth? Or are they just showing who their real father is?
Again, I am no longer surprised. February 15, 2009 3:17 AM

Rodimus said… Thanks Atty. Llasos for your response. You don’t have to post it all like that, you could just inform me that you have posted your response to your blog. I shall try to respond within the week if time permits.
Thanks also Mr. Bibe for your comment. I understand that you have to say things like that. It must really hurt when someone like me is able to pierce your “invunerable” defense. February 15, 2009 5:01 PM

Cenon Bibe Jr. said… I’m sorry if I had to be honest about how things are with some of you so-called evangelicals.

I know it hurts when you are confronted with the truth which Atty Llasos has detailed above.
Isn’t that the reason why evangelicals like you hide behind pseudonyms? You cannot show your faces where your claims and arguments are.
We Catholics put our names and faces on our beliefs because we are confident that these are incontrovertible. Unlike you so-called Bereans who must be so ashamed of your lies and concoctions that you dig a hole and bury yourself in it. But I don’t blame you for wanting to hide behind false identities. Sabi nga sa Pilipino, Mahihiya rin ako dahil sa mga ginagawa n’yo.
I know you know that.

The truth hurts, Mr. Bibe. But it can set you free. February 15, 2009 11:50 PM

I wish you could say the same for what you believe in.
Please do not think that I am just out to criticize you in regard to the fact that what you believe is not worth having your name on it. I think that reality is already fairly obvious.
What I am pointing out at the risk of stating the obvious is that it is only so convenient for someone hiding behind a fake name to concoct false claims against others.
You want to attribute adhominem to me?
How about striking someone who is out in the open while you hide in the dark? What do you call that?
Maybe what I am asking of you, Rodimus, is to be fair and honest enough to identify yourself while you make all your accusations.
In that way, we could respond to a real human being and not a ghost.
Your codename is indeed the least of my worries. What perturbs me is the fact that you have the tenacity to attack Catholics while you are safely curled up in your dark, tiny hole.
Yes, the truth like God made the heavens and the earth does not become false just because someone like you throws it around in an effort to make yourself look credible. Even the devil used scripture to make himself sound sane.
Show yourself and prove to us that you are ready and willing to engage in an honest to goodness discussion of your issues.
You mentioned something about the truth. What truth is that? The fact that you can’t refute our arguments so you resort to inventions and made up “contradictions?”That is the truth that you have to deal with, Rodimus; the truth that all you have are cooked up claims and nothing more.
You said it: The truth hurts. But it can set you free. February 16, 2009 10:09 AM

Cenon Bibe Jr. said… Excuse me, Rodimus. Is there anything wrong with your blog site?
I tried to see if new comments were added to your insistence that Atty. Marwil Llasos and Mr. Evert contradicted one another but I couldn’t find all the comments.
I am particularly worried about the complete and unedited response of Atty Llasos to your accusation. You only cited excerpts above. I think Atty Llasos–and all others who commented on your claims–deserve to have our reactions read. Don’t you?
What happened, Rodimus?
I hope everything is all right.
I am worried that the missing comments would lead people to believe that you deliberately removed the comments to hide the truth from readers of your blog. We wouldn’t want that would we?
In my reactions, I asked that you be transparent. I hope the seeming loss of the comments would not lead people to think that you are deliberately hiding something.Your credebility and that of your supposed ministry may be at stake if the comments are not restored soon.

Cenon Bibe Jr. said… Now, please allow me to share some thoughts on this issue.
First of all, is it my understanding that you are insisting that the word “brothers” (greek adelphoi)in Mt 13:55 means ONLY ONE THING? And that is BLOOD BROTHERS?
If that is your case then may I suggest you consult a Greek dictionary.
Strong’s Number 80 gives this meaning for ADELPHOS:
1. a brother, whether born of the same two parents or only of the same father or mother
2. having the same national ancestor, belonging to the same people, or countryman
3. any fellow or man
4. a fellow believer, united to another by the bond of affection
5. an associate in employment or office
6. brethren in Christ
a. his brothers by blood
b. all men
c. apostles
d. Christians, as those who are exalted to the same heavenly place
A simple reading of these definitions (take note MORE THAN ONE) of ADELPHOS (plural ADELPHOI) will tell you that BLOOD BROTHER is NOT the ONLY MEANING of the word.
Now, unless you can prove that the use of ADELPHOI in Mt 13:55 means ONE AND ONLY THING, which is BLOOD BROTHER, then your insistence on that meaning is FLIMSY.
If you can show any other verse to support your claim, then please do so. Otherwise, you are relying only on your gravely limited knowledge and understanding of ADELPHOI (ADELPHOS).
On the other hand, the Catholic positions provided by Atty Llasos and Mr. Evert only explain the wide range of meanings of the word.
Now, Biblical evidence strongly supports the Catholic position.
Why?
As Atty Llasos already pointed out, other verses identify some of the “brothers” mentioned in Mt 13:55 as NOT the CHILDREN of MARY THE MOTHER OF JESUS but that of ANOTHER MARY.
The KJV (the favorite translation of many non-Catholics) states of Mt 13:55, “Is not this the carpenter’s son? Is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, JAMES, and JOSES, and Simon, and Judas?” (emphasis mine)
In Mt 27:56 of the KJV again, it again mentions JAMES and JOSES.
The KJV says, “Among which was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of JAMES and JOSES, and the mother of Zebedees children.”
Who are they?
They are the SONS of another MARY.
What Mary? Is she the “wife” of Joseph?
Here is what John 19:25 says: “Mary the WIFE of CLOPAS.”
You claim to be a CPA. Maybe you can add 1 and 1 together to get 2. Right?
Meaning, the James and Joses mentioned as “brothers” (ADELPHOI) of Jesus in Mt 13:55 are NOT the SONS of MARY the mother of Jesus but SONS of ANOTHER MARY. Thus, they are NOT BLOOD BROTHERS of JESUS as you insist.
I think that is quite simple enough and one need not be a CPA to understand that.

Rodimus said… Good afternoon Mr. Bibe,
You said:”I am worried that the missing comments would lead people to believe that you deliberately removed the comments to hide the truth from readers of your blog. We wouldn’t want that would we?”
As far as I know that before this new comment there were already 12 comments posted. Two here and 10 in the other article. I don’t know what other comments you are talking about. But if you’re going to imply that I deleted them then the burden of proof belongs to my accusers.
They are free to comment anytime.
In your next comment you said:”First of all, is it my understanding that you are insisting that the word “brothers” (greek adelphoi)in Mt 13:55 means ONLY ONE THING? And that is BLOOD BROTHERS?”
My answer is please read the article agains specially the ones colored green where I mentioned the word CONTEXT.
As to James and Joses, you know it does not necessarily follow that similar names refer to the same person. If you were to say the name Gloria to an American, what are the odds that he will point you to our President Arroyo and not Gloria Estefan or Gloria Gaynor?

As to your response to my other comment, you did mention the word “context” in your post but did not SHOW the context.
There is a vast difference between saying one thing and actually showing it.
And now that you’ve mentioned it, could you please show the context which would support your assumption that the use of the word “adelphoi” in Mt13:55 is limited to ONE AND ONLY THING: BLOOD BROTHERS.
Maybe you would appeal to your response to Atty Marwil.
In your rebuttal, you asked why the neighbor of Jesus did not mention the parents of “James, Joses, Simon and Judas” if they indeed were sons of another woman other than the Virgin Mary.
I guess you made a valid question, but one that shows your lack of knowledge or understanding of the BIGGER CONTEXT of Mt13:55.
In case you or some of your readers do not know, Mt13:55 is only a PART of a bigger body of writing–the entire Gospel written by Matthew. And in another part of his account, Matthew identified the MOTHER of James and Joses.
And according to Matthew, in chapter 27:56, they are the sons of ANOTHER MARY and NOT the VIRGIN MARY.
Then again, your defense is that “it does not necessarily follow that similar names refer to the same person.”
Your assumption may be valid if you are referring to people in general and to a vast and wide context, like in your analogy where someone were to mention a “Gloria” to an American.
Of course, the American–not knowing the CONTEXT of your mentioning “Gloria”–could easily think of any Gloria that she knows.
But your assumption simply can not apply to the Gospel of Matthew, where the CONTEXT is CLEAR and RESTRICTED.What is the CONTEXT of the mentioning of “James, Joses, Simon and Judas?
It is the NARRATION or STORY about JESUS, who Matthew is introducing to the readers of his Gospel.
Now, why did Matthew mention the “brothers” (adelphoi) of Jesus? Was it to describe his family tree?
No. What Matthew only wanted to show was that people or his neighbors knew his relatives. And for that purpose, Matthew did not need to mention all the members of his relative’s family. He only needed to state a few or them, like “James, Joses, Simon and Judas.”
So, to mention the relatives of Jesus without naming their parents is totally logical.
Why? Do you always mention the names of your aunts and uncles whenever you tell people about your cousins who are their children?
Of course not! Not unless the parents are really that important to what you are saying.
But as I have already pointed out, Matthew was not really interested in giving the entire family trees of the relatives of Jesus.
When Matthew pointed out that Jesus was the carpenter’s son and that His mother was Mary, that completely established the family of Jesus. Matthew no longer needed to mention his siblings if indeed He had any but which He did not have.
The mention of is relatives “James, Joses, Simon and Judas” was aimed at establishing the place from where He came from, or as how Atty Marwil put it, His kibbutz.
Now, another reason why Matthew mentioned the names of his relatives, James and Joses in particular, was because he was going to use them later on in his narrative to introduce another character in the story–the OTHER MARY.
In Mt13:55, Matthew introduced James and Joses as the relatives of Jesus.
Later, in Mt27:56, Matthew used them to introduce another relative of Jesus, the OTHER MARY, James and Joses’s mother, who was also near the cross.
In other words, Matthew used James and Joses as a link to the OTHER MARY.
That is a technique used by writers which other people, even CPA’s, would most likely understand. I am just not sure if you could.
Now, what would be illogical is if you are right in saying that the James and Joses in Mt27:56 are not the same ones in Mt13:55.
Why would Matthew mention another set of James and Joses from out of the blue? What would be the point if he did that?
If you are right, then the James and Joses in Mt27:56 would be totally irrelevant. In fact, even the OTHER MARY mentioned in the verse would also be totally irrelevant.
They would not have any value to the narrative and would only be a waste of ink and space. And Matthew’s mention of them, Rodimus, would be totally illogical.
But since the Gospel, which is guided and inspired by the Holy Spirit, is logical, it is clear that the James and Joses in Mt13:55 are the same ones in Mt27:56 who are the sons of ANOTHER MARY and NOT of the VIRGIN MARY.
By that, your assumption against the Perpetual Virginity of Mary based on your reading of Mt13:55 falls flat on its face.

Rodimus said… CB: What is the CONTEXT of the mentioning of “James, Joses, Simon and Judas?

Rodimus: I’m very sure that in the context of Matthew 13:55 Jesus was in his HOMETOWN. So when you are in your hometown what is the probability that you are living with someone you do not know?
CB: What Matthew only wanted to show was that people or his neighbors knew his relatives. And for that purpose, Matthew did not need to mention all the members of his relative’s family. He only needed to state a few or them, like “James, Joses, Simon and Judas.”
Rodimus: What theory is going to support you on that? At least, mine came from experience and common sense. You can limit your narration in your closest family (parents and sibling). But if you extend it to your relatives, don’t you think that the uncle and aunt are more senior than your cousins?
CB: Now, another reason why Matthew mentioned the names of his relatives, James and Joses in particular, was because he was going to use them later on in his narrative to introduce another character in the story–the OTHER MARY.
Rodimus: Is that so? Then tell me, how was it possible that the Catholic Encyclopedia was able to provide a sibling relationship for Lazarus, Martha, and Mary Magdalene whereas the Bible does not mention who their parents are?
Furthermore, if James was a son of another Mary, why was he still addressed by Paul in Galatians as the brother of the Lord if Paul knew that he wasn’t Virgin Mary’s son? Aren’t the apostles also brothers of Christ, so why was James singled out? Of all the relationship he could use such as suggenis of the Lord, son of the Virgin’s sister, son of Mary’s sister just like Matthew said, Paul opted a more undefined relationship: adelphos of the Lord.
You know, when theories are inconsistent like the ones you’re giving it is an indicator of fraud. And we know very well that God cannot author fraud. February 21, 2009 5:43 PM

Cenon Bibe Jr. said… You’re rebuttal is full of contradictions and inconsistencies.

1. You said, “I’m very sure that in the context of Matthew 13:55 Jesus was in his HOMETOWN. So when you are in your hometown WHAT IS THE PROBABILITY THAT YOU ARE LIVING WITH SOMEONE YOU DO NOT KNOW? (emphasis mine)
With that, Rodimus, you are saying that the NEIGHBOR who made the statement ALREADY KNEW EVERYONE ELSE: the PARENTS and the COUSINS or RELATIVES.
You are then CONTRADICTING YOURSELF when you said that the NAMES of the PARENTS of James, Joses, Simon and Judas should have been mentioned.
If you are correct that EVERYONE KNEW EVERYONE ELSE in the HOMETOWN of JESUS, that REMOVES the NEED for the neighbor to mention the PARENTS of “James, Joses, Simon and Judas.”
Why state the obvious? Right?
And thus, YOU SUPPORT my stand that the neighbor NO LONGER NEEDED to MENTION the NAMES of the PARENTS of the RELATIVES.
THAT is COMMON SENSE. Your assertion that the PARENTS should have also been mentioned GOES AGAINST COMMON SENSE and is even CONTRARY to COMMON PRACTICE.
Why? Do you usually do a ROLL CALL of your RELATIVES’ ENTIRE FAMILY when you introduce one of their members?
People always tend to SIMPLIFY things. They will NOT MENTION the ENTIRE FAMILY when it is enough to mention one or a few known members of that family.
Where is it COMMON PRACTICE (your EXPERIENCE) that PARENTS should ALWAYS be NAMED FIRST before the CHILDREN are mentioned in a conversation? That is simply NOT COMMON SENSE as you claim.
You mention the parents if they are RELEVANT in the conversation. But if you are introducing the relatives of a person, the mention of ANY KNOWN RELATIVE or RELATIVES is sufficient.
And that is what the “neighbor” did when he was quoted in Mt13:55.
Lastly, on this point, your statement of the context of Mt13:55 DOES NOT SUPPORT your claim that “adelphoi” only meant BLOOD BROTHERS in the verse.
Your statement even betrays your assumption that adelphoi only meant BLOOD BROTHERS.
If the neighbor already knew the entire family of Jesus, it would have been IMPRACTICAL and ILLOGICAL for him to state the names of all his supposed brothers and sisters. The mention of His parents was enough to establish his FAMILY.
Instead, it was more logical to name the RELATIVES of JESUS in order to place Him in the BIGGER COMMUNITY.
So, you said it: “When theories are INCONSISTENT … it is an indicator of FRAUD. And we know very well that God cannot author fraud.”
Now, everybody knows where your getting your theories.
2. You asked, “How was it possible that the Catholic Encyclopedia was able to provide a sibling relationship for Lazarus, Martha, and Mary Magdalene whereas the Bible does not mention who their parents are?”
How did the Catholic Encyclopedia determine that Lazarus, Martha and Mary are siblings? Because the BIBLE SAID SO in John 11:1-2.
Jn 11:1 says Mary and Martha are SISTERS. Verse 2 says Lazarus is the BROTHER of Mary.
You claim to be a CPA. Maybe you can add these things up.
If Mary and Martha are sisters, and Lazarus is the brother of Mary, then Lazarus is also the brother of Martha.
John did not need to mention their parents because the narration is already very clear as to their relationship.
The CONTEXT is clear that they are CHILDREN of the SAME PARENTS. There is no circumstance that will confuse them as cousins or merely relatives.
In fact, there is no other reference in the Bible that would show that they are not siblings. Unlike the case of James and Joses who were identified as the sons of ANOTHER MARY.
3. Why was James still addressed by Paul as “the brother of the Lord”?
Why? Did James cease to become a relative of Jesus to disqualify him to be called “brother” of the Lord? I don’t think so.
May I remind you of the meaning of “adelphoi.” It does not only refer to BLOOD BROTHER but to RELATIVES and even TOWNSMATES, among others.
So, there is little weight in your question. I would even think that you are only trying to confuse yourself as to something already very clear and established.
And now that you mentioned it, is James really another son of the Virgin Mary?
No. Should you not know, Mt13:55 has a parallel in Mark, Mk6:3.
In Mk6:3, Jesus is referred to as “THE SON of Mary.”
Take note of the DEFINITE ARTICLE “THE.”
DEFINITE ARTICLES refer to a particular noun.
So, when the DEFINITE ARTICLE was used to refer to Jesus as THE SON of Mary, that means that JESUS is THE ONLY SON of Mary.
That fact is make clearer when “James, Joses, Simon and Judas” are then mentioned.
Had James, Joses, Simon and Judas been sons of the Virgin Mary as well, then the DEFINITE ARTICLE on Jesus would be WRONG. Mark should have just said that Jesus was “A SON of Mary” and His (blood) brothers are …
Now, unless you want to accuse Mark and the Holy Spirit of “misleading” people, there is no way for you to understand mk6:3 except to agree that Jesus is THE ONLY SON of Mary.
So, you see, Rodimus, your objections to the PERPETUAL VIRGINITY of MARY do not have any legs to stand on.
That is why many non-Catholics are resorting to inventions in their vain attempt to disprove a well-established truth.
Rodimus said… CB: If you are correct that EVERYONE KNEW EVERYONE ELSE in the HOMETOWN of JESUS, that REMOVES the NEED for the neighbor to mention the PARENTS of “James, Joses, Simon and Judas.”
Rodimus: What contradiction? All I am saying here is that when you are in your hometown you’re living someone you know very well. And with that attempted rebuttal of yours it sounds childish. If there is no need to mention the parents of James, Joses, etc. then neither should we mention Joseph and Mary. The neighbor should a have said, “Hey, this is Jesus, period.”
CB: If the neighbor already knew the entire family of Jesus, it would have been IMPRACTICAL and ILLOGICAL for him to state the names of all his supposed brothers and sisters. The mention of His parents was enough to establish his FAMILY.
Rodimus: Okay so why did the neighbor mentioned other people?
CB: If Mary and Martha are sisters, and Lazarus is the brother of Mary, then Lazarus is also the brother of Martha.John did not need to mention their parents because the narration is already very clear as to their relationship.
Rodimus: Thank you for telling me that the Roman Catholic apologists like you are using double standards. The only words that made you conclude that Lazarus, Martha, and Mary are siblings are the words adelphos and adelphi – nothing more. You did not do the same with James, Joses, etc. who are in the same hometown. Thanks for admitting your double standard.
CB: May I remind you of the meaning of “adelphoi.” It does not only refer to BLOOD BROTHER but to RELATIVES and even TOWNSMATES, among others.
Rodimus: Shall I apply that against Lazarus, Martha, Mary Magdalene? Ooops! You exposed your biases.
CB: So, when the DEFINITE ARTICLE was used to refer to Jesus as THE SON of Mary, that means that JESUS is THE ONLY SON of Mary.
Rodimus: Read my article again:
While the article “the” can signify the one and only, it doesn’t always mean that way in other sentences. In John 4:5, Joseph is mentioned to be THE SON of Jacob, are we to conclude that Jacob had no other children? Moreover, Jesus was referred as “a son” in Luke 1:31 and not “your only child”, so why not conclude Mary has other children subsequent to Christ?
If I were you Mr. Bibe, stop making up spurious theories. You’re only making it obvious that Roman Catholic arguments are self-serving and inconsistent. February 25, 2009 9:44 PM

Cenon Bibe Jr. said… Childish, Rodimus?
Your attempt at a rebuttal is what’s childish.
You said, “If there is no need to mention the parents of James, Joses, etc. then NEITHER SHOULD WE MENTION JOSEPH AND MARY. The neighbor should have said, “Hey, this is Jesus, period.” (emphasis mine)
In your vain attempt to respond you turned a blind eye or pretended not to read my explanation on why the neighbor mentioned the parents of Jesus.
I said, “You mention the parents if they are RELEVANT in the conversation.”
In the case of introducing the FAMILY of Jesus, the names of the parents of Jesus was not only relevant but necessary.
Thus I also said, “The mention of His parents was enough to establish his FAMILY.”
And, “it would have been IMPRACTICAL and ILLOGICAL for him to state the names of all his supposed brothers and sisters.”
Why did the neighbor not say “Hey, this is Jesus, period”?
In Hebrew, the name Yashua o Yeshua (Jesus) was quite common and thus it had to be made clear “which” Yashua was being referred to.
And how did people do that?
By mentioning their parents. Again, that explains why it was necessary to mention the parents of Jesus.
Anyone familiar with the Bible most probably knows that. For children were more often intoduced by stating who their parents were. For example, Mt1:1, “Jesus Chritst the son of David, the son of Abraham;” or Mt4:21, “James the son of Zebedee;” or Mt 16:18, “Simon son of Jonah.”
Now, why was it not necessary to mention in Mt13:55 the parents of James, Joses, Simon and Judas?
I already answered that.I said, “It was more logical to name the RELATIVES of JESUS in order to place Him in the BIGGER COMMUNITY.”
And as I have already pointed out, the MOTHER of James and Joses was indeed identified: She was the OTHER MARY and NOT the VIRGIN MARY.
So, the concerns that you have raised have so far been addressed already.
It is apparent that your defense and rebuttal rest on pretending not to read what I already stated and on repeating claims that have already been belied.
Why is that, Rodimus? I hope you are not a disciple of Dr. Joseph Goebels–Hitler’s propagandist–who believed that repeating a lie often enough will make people believe it to be the truth.
2. Double standard, Rodimus?
Again, you simply ignored my explanation on how we Catholics established that Mary, Martha and Lazarus are BLOOD BROTHERS and SISTERS.
And again, you are imputing malice where there is none.
But I am glad, Rodimus, because people who reading our exchange are seeing more clearly how desperate and futile your claims are.
The point on the use of “adelphoi” and “adelphai” has already been well explained in my rebuttal.
It referred to RELATIVES on Jesus in Mt13:55 because the CONTEXT points to that meaning. It referred to BLOOD SISTERS and BROTHER in the case of Mary, Martha and Lazarus because the CONTEXT point that out.
So, contrary to what you’re imagining, there are no double standards there and no biases. You simply just cannot accept simple facts.
3. Now, here is one clear indication of deception on your part.
You pointed to Lk1:31 where you said that Jesus was referred to “a son.”
Does the verse actually claim that Jesus was “a son” AMONG MANY?
NO! ABSOLUTELY NOT!
Here is what the verse says in the KJV: “And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth A SON, and shalt call his name JESUS.”
Where does it say there that Jesus will be “a son” AMONG MANY?
NOWHERE, but ONLY IN YOUR IMAGINATION and in your FALSE CLAIMS.
I say you attempt to deceive because you are using Lk1:31 OUT OF CONTEXT.
The verse does not point to Jesus as “as son” AMONG MANY, but it is only stating a FACT that MARY will be bearing ONLY ONE SON–JESUS CHRIST.
And taken in the proper context, Lk1:31 even supports our stand that JESUS was an ONLY SON. The verse did not make any reference to any other sons that Mary would be having.
So, the truth about the PERPETUAL VIRGINITY of MARY remains unshaken.
I hope that you would read your advice: STOP MAKING SPURIOUS THEORIES.
You cannot and will not be able to debunk the CATHOLIC CHURCH’S belief in the PERPETUAL VIRGINITY of MARY, not even if you resort to LIES, INVENTIONS and CONTRADICTORY STATEMENTS. February 26, 2009 10:14 PM

Rodimus said… CB: And, “it would have been IMPRACTICAL and ILLOGICAL for him to state the names of all his supposed brothers and sisters.”I said, “It was more logical to name the RELATIVES of JESUS in order to place Him in the BIGGER COMMUNITY.”
Rodimus: I think with those statements you are showing your bigotry. Isn’t mentioning your brothers and sisters before your relatives already places you in a BIGGER community? And why it isn’t practical? If I tell about Kris Aquino, I’d mention Noynoy first before her cousins Mikee and Jackie. This is not only practical, it is also called COMMON SENSE.
CB: It referred to RELATIVES on Jesus in Mt13:55 because the CONTEXT points to that meaning. It referred to BLOOD SISTERS and BROTHER in the case of Mary, Martha and Lazarus because the CONTEXT point that out.
Rodimus: They used the same Greek words: Adelphos and Adelphi. The word hometown is mentioned in both scenarios. The only difference is the parents of Lazarus, Martha, and Magdalene aren’t mentioned. And you still think they are different? You’re not being honest here.
CB: The verse does not point to Jesus as “as son” AMONG MANY, but it is only stating a FACT that MARY will be bearing ONLY ONE SON–JESUS CHRIST.
Rodimus: Try a different lie, Mr. Bibe cause that’s not working. If angel Gabriel knew that Mary is perpetually a virgin he would have said “Your only child.” The mere fact he said “a son” it raises the probablity that he is one among many.
CB: You cannot and will not be able to debunk the CATHOLIC CHURCH’S belief in the PERPETUAL VIRGINITY of MARY, not even if you resort to LIES, INVENTIONS and CONTRADICTORY STATEMENTS.
Rodimus: You won’t be able to debunk the Bible, Mr. Bibe. So I suggest you follow God’s written word instead of your Magisterium. February 27, 2009 2:13 AM

Cenon Bibe Jr. said… Bigotry, Rodimus?
How does mentioning the cousins or relatives of a person being introduced constitute bigotry?
It is becoming more and more obvious why you Bereans keep on cowering away from a formal debate with Catholic Defenders. You know very well that your assertions are shallow.
Now, to your rebuttal. How does naming one’s brothers and sisters put one in the BIGGER COMMUNITY? How does that place someone OUTSIDE of his IMMEDIATE FAMILY?
Excuse me but I find your reasoning quite nonsensical and desperate.
If I say that Kris Aquino is the daughter of Cory and Benigno Aquino, does that not explicitly identify Kris as to her family?
After stating that Kris is the daughter of Cory and Ninoy, do I still need to name all of her brothers and sisters?
Again, that would be stating the obvious and stating the obvious does not make for common sense. By stating the obvious, you even insult the intelligence of your audience.
And mentioning all the members of Kris’s immediate family does not place her in the BIGGER COMMUNITY.
To put Kris in the BIGGER COMMUNITY, I could mention that she is the cousin of Mikee Cojuangco who is the husband of Dodot Jaworski.
THAT would put Kris in the BIGGER COMMUNITY.
So, I’m really sorry for finding your reasoning hilarious.
2. You again repeat your FALSE ASSERTION that just because the words “adelphoi” and “adelpai” were used to refer to Mary, Martha and Lazarus, that necessarily makes James, Joses, Simon and Judas as the BLOOD BROTHERS of Jesus.
So, I will have to remind you again that “adelphoi” and “adelphai” have a WIDE RANGE of MEANINGS that may include BLOOD BROTHERS, RELATIVES, and even TOWNMATES.
And as I have already shown, the MEANING of the words “adelphoi” and “adelphai” can be gleaned from the CONTEXT in which it is used.
I am sorry to say that you have been strenuously trying to avoid the context of Mt13:55 and John 11:1-2 just to insist on your FALSE ASSUMPTION, which you again repeated.
As I already said, REPEATING a LIE or a FALSE STATEMENT DOES NOT MAKE IT TRUE.
Goebels, the Nazi propagandist, was one other person who insisted on repeating a FALSE STATEMENT in the hope that some half-awake reader would believe that it is true.
And what is this assertion of yours that “adelphoi” and “adelphai” are necessarily BLOOD BROTHERS just because their hometown is mentioned? Where did you get that?
Could you cite one authority in the Greek language that says that “The mention of the hometown means adelphoi and adelphai are BLOOD BROTHERS.”
You better re-read your advice about making making SPURIOUS THEORIES and FRAUDULENT CLAIMS, because you are right in the center of it.
3. You said, “The mere fact he said “a son” it raises the probablity that he is one among many.
What? And where did you get that one?
I’m sure there are hundreds, if not hundreds of thousands, of mothers who have been told the they would be “having A SON” but NEVER had ANY OTHER CHILDREN except for that one.Your INVENTIONS are really incredible, Rodimus.
Your have a very fertile imagination.
And yet you have the guts to say that I am lying?
I am only very happy that our discussion is documented. People are getting to know you–and the Bereans–better and better with every exchange.
4. Are you the Bible, Rodimus? Are your FALSE CLAIMS, FALSE ASSERTIONS, and FALSE ASSUMPTIONS even worth being mentioned together with scripture?
I’m sorry to say that your LIES, INVENTIONS and CONTRADICTORY STATEMENTS are on opposite sides with the Bible.
If there is one who is NOT FOLLOWING and who is even contradicting the BIBLE, that is YOU, RODIMUS.
You and your Berean friends have no fear nor shame in TWISTING and DISTORTING the WORD OF GOD just to make it suit your preposterous and ridiculous objections to the PERPETUAL VIRGINITY of MARY.
No wonder you and your Berean hoard are so ashamed to put your names and faces on your claims.
I repeat, Rodimus. You and your Berean bunch cannot and will not be able to debunk the CATHOLIC CHURCH’S belief in the PERPETUAL VIRGINITY of MARY, not even if you resort to LIES, INVENTIONS and CONTRADICTORY STATEMENTS.

After this response from Bro. Cenon true enough the Cowardly Rodimus was silent for more than a week and when he appeared he changed topic and no answer here at all. WELL DONE RODIMUS THE COWARD!

Posted in Bereans, Debate, Doctrinal Comparison, THE CATHOLIC CHURCH HAS THE ANSWER, Virgin Mary | Leave a Comment »

THE BEREANS ARE NEITHER HERE NOR THERE by Atty. Marwil Llasos

Posted by catholicfaithdefender on March 9, 2009

THE BEREANS ARE NEITHER HERE NOR THERE

by Atty. Marwil Llasos

Link:http://marwil-n-llasos.blogspot.com/

http://thesplendorofthechurch.blogspot.com/2009/03/bereans-are-neither-here-nor-there-by.html

Madonna and Child with Prayer Book

BEREANS ARE NEITHER HERE NOR THERE!!!
A perennial source of embarrassment for many modern-day Protestants, evangelicals included, is when they are confronted with a question on how come they do not believe the same doctrines that the reformers taught, asserted and defended.

One such doctrine is the Perpetual Virginity of Mary. Catholics defend this belief in solidarity with the early church and virtually the whole of orthodox Christendom throughout the ages. Mary’s perpetual virginity is held by the Eastern Orthodox, many Anglicans and Lutherans. Moreover, the founding fathers of Protestantism like Luther, Zwingli and Calvin, among others.

In my reply to the blog of a faceless, anonymous and amateur “apologist” from a rag-tag aggrupation of evangelicals from various “faith traditions” – the so-called “Bereans Apologetics and Research Ministry” – I raised the following:
“Why did the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, teach the heretics the truth which He did not teach mainstream and orthodox Christians?”
Even the Reformers believed the “concocted spurious theory” of Mary’s perpetual virginity.

Martin Luther (1483-1546): It is an article of faith that Mary is Mother of the Lord and still a virgin. … Christ, we believe, came forth from a womb left perfectly intact. (Weimer’s The Works of Luther, English translation by Pelikan, Concordia, St. Louis, v. 11, pp. 319-320; v. 6. p. 510.)

This immaculate and perpetual virginity forms, therefore, the just theme of our eulogy. Such was the work of the Holy Ghost, who at the Conception and birth of the Son so favoured the Virgin Mother as to impart to her fecundity while preserving inviolate her perpetual virginity.

In this work whereby she was made the Mother of God, so many and such great good things were given her that no one can grasp them. … Not only was Mary the mother of him who is born [in Bethlehem], but of him who, before the world, was eternally born of the Father, from a Mother in time and at the same time man and God. (Weimer’s The Works of Luther, English translation by Pelikan, Concordia, St. Louis, v. 7, p. 572.)

John Calvin (1509-1564): It cannot be denied that God in choosing and destining Mary to be the Mother of his Son, granted her the highest honor. … Elizabeth called Mary Mother of the Lord, because the unity of the person in the two natures of Christ was such that she could have said that the mortal man engendered in the womb of Mary as at the same time the eternal God. (Calvini Opera, Corpus Reformatorum, Braunschweig-Berlin, 1863-1900, v. 45, p. 348, 35.)
Ulrich Zwingli (1484-1531):
I firmly believe that Mary, according to the words of the gospel as a pure Virgin brought forth for us the Son of God and in childbirth and after childbirth forever remained a pure, intact Virgin. (Zwingli Opera, Corpus Reformatorum, Berlin, 1905, v. 1, p. 424.)

These Reformers read the same Bible as RODIMUS and other evangelicals read. How come they had a different conclusion? In fact, my question to modern day Protestants is why they do not anymore believe in the doctrine of Mary’s perpetual virginity, a doctrine which was asserted and defended even by their very own founders. The contradiction it seems lies in the position of the Reformers and modern evangelicals.

In believing Mary’s perpetual virginity, were the Reformers heretics? If so, Protestantism (and all its offshoots) was founded by heretics. If they were wrong on Mary’s perpetual virginity, they can be wrong on so many things.

If the belief in Mary’s perpetual virginity is not heresy, then what is my good friend and brother RODIMUS crowing about?

The answer that I got from the Bereans is neither here nor there. Their somewhat discombobulated reply miserably failed to answer the issues head-on. As is typical of their argumentation, the Bereans skirted the issue. This is the evasive reply of Rodimus of the Bereans –

Now, Atty. Llasos presented historical evidences that the Perpetual Virginity of Mary was believed even by the Reformers Luther, Zwingli, and Calvin. While it may be true that these Reformers believed Mary’s perpetual virginity, one has to consider their circumstances during their time. These men were reforming a 1,200 year old church from which they came (I say 1,200 year old church because I believe that the Church of Rome was founded only after 300AD and the reformation occurred after 1500AD). The focus of the Reformers was on the Lord Jesus Christ. They made sure that Christ was the one deified and not Mary. The process of changing wasn’t overnight and the task of reforming may have been extended to their successors.

Excuse me? This response is no response at all. It is simply not responsive to the questions I squarely raised. It’s like asking Rodimus “How are you?” and his reply is “I’m seven years old.” Can you beat that?

Before we analyze the totally flawed rationalization of the Bereans, let me remind you that I brought up issue of the reformers’ belief in Mary’s perpetual virginity in the light of Rodimus sweeping and unfounded accusation. He said: “the Roman Catholics are desperate that they concoct some spurious theories to obscure the truth without realizing it backfires on them.” So, my challenge to him was to identify who are these desperate Roman Catholics who concocted the “spurious theory” of Mary’s perpetual virginity and when did these desperate Roman Catholics concoct the “spurious theory” of Mary’s perpetual virginity. These questions were sadly not answered. The accountant cannot account for an answer.

Thus, if indeed it is true that “desperate Roman Catholics” concocted the spurious theory of the perpetual virginity of Mary, as Rodimus would have us believe, how come the early church fathers believed in it (to think that, according to Rodimus, there was no “Roman Church” before 300AD)? More so, the Protestant reformers also believed and defended it. Can Rodimus account for that?

He can’t. Notice the evasive answer that he gave. I also raised these questions:

These Reformers read the same Bible as Rodimus and other evangelicals read. How come they had a different conclusion?

Why do modern day Protestants do not anymore believe in the doctrine of Mary’s perpetual virginity, a doctrine which was asserted and defended even by their very own founders?

Why is there contradiction between the position of the Reformers and modern evangelicals?

In believing Mary’s perpetual virginity, were the Reformers heretics? If so, Protestantism (and all its offshoots) was founded by heretics. If they were wrong on Mary’s perpetual virginity, they can be wrong on so many things.

If the belief in Mary’s perpetual virginity is not heresy, then what is Rodimus crowing about?

The answer my friend, is blowing in the wind. The answer is blowing in the wind… Let us now analyze the ratiocination of the Bereans:

Now, Atty. Llasos presented historical evidences (sic) that the Perpetual Virginity of Mary was believed even by the Reformers Luther, Zwingli, and Calvin.

Notice how Rodimus misappreciated the issues I raised. I did not merely raise historical evidence (which Rodimus by the way did not refute), I raised categorical questions. These were not answered.

While it may be true that these Reformers believed Mary’s perpetual virginity, one has to consider their circumstances during their time.

This is also not responsive to any of the questions. Rodimus skirted the issues. Note that Rodimus tried to explain away the faith of the reformers by appealing to the “circumstances during their time.” What were these circumstances? Rodimus said:

These men were reforming a 1,200 year old church from which they came (I say 1,200 year old church because I believe that the Church of Rome was founded only after 300AD and the reformation occurred after 1500AD).

This is where the Bereans display their utmost ignorance of church history. What 1,2000 year old church? Notice that Rodimus merely expressed his “belief” that the “Church of Rome” was founded only after 300AD. Hello? What’s your proof? The Bereans call themselves the Bereans “Apologetics and Research Ministry.” Is this the quality of their research? Is this the best that the Bereans have to offer? Pure guesswork!

Let’s press the Bereans to back up their unfounded assertions with solid and credible evidence. Can Rodimus tell us who founded the Church of Rome and when exactly the Church of Rome founded?

The focus of the Reformers was on the Lord Jesus Christ.

This is again an unfounded allegation. Aside from the bare assertion, Rodimus offered no exact quotes from the Reformers that their focus in teaching the perpetual virginity was on the Lord Jesus Christ (see: my quotes above).
Nevertheless, the Bereans’ ignorance of Catholic teaching is all too apparent. For us Catholics, Mary’s perpetual virginity is not much about her but about Him.
Rodimus is woefully incompetent to tell us Catholics what we believe. As a cradle evangelical, Rodimus is unqualified by any to pose as an expert on the Catholic faith.

As a Catholic apologist and Marian lecturer, I think that I am in a much better position than Rodimus or any of the Bereans to state what we Catholics believe regarding Mary’s perpetual virginity and why. I have consistently pointed out in my writings and lectures that: “The Catholic Church emphatically affirms the truth of Mary’s perpetual virginity because it is a corollary truth to the Virgin Birth of Our Lord. It is intended to safeguard the virginal conception of Jesus Christ which is a fundamental doctrine of Christianity. The Virgin Birth points out the uniqueness of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Mary’s perpetual virginity is a sign of that uniqueness. Hence, God’s wisdom decreed Mary’s perpetual virginity to safeguard the Virgin Birth of Our Lord. An only child was unusual during the time of Christ. If Jesus were not the only child of Mary, His birth would not appear miraculous. If Jesus had brothers and sisters, the people of His time would always suspect that He was born the normal way.”

Likewise, I had occasion to state: “Jesus’ unique Sonship from Mary reflects His unique Sonship in eternity. Christ is the only-begotten Son of the Father, who begets Him eternally without the help of a mother. He is also the only Son of Mary, who conceives Him in time without the help of a man. It is also further affirmation of the holiness and Deity of Jesus. It would not have been fitting for the womb which bore the Savior to bring sinners into the world (which any hypothetical child of Joseph and Mary would have been). As the ancient Ark of the Covenant was consecrated for sacred use, so the New Ark could not be defiled by common usage.

Moreover:Jesus’ unique Sonship from Mary reflects His unique Sonship in eternity. Christ is the only-begotten Son of the Father, who begets Him eternally without the help of a mother. He is also the only Son of Mary, who conceives Him in time without the help of a man.

An early church father, Theodotus of Ancyra (d. before 446 AD), saw the perpetual virginity of Mary as proof of the divinity of her Son. He said:

No mother of a man has ever remained a virgin. Have you seen how this birth offers us a twofold consideration regarding the One who is born? If he had been born like us, he would have been a man, but if he kept his Mother a virgin, it is clear, for those who know how to think, that the One who is born is God” [Theodotus of Ancyra, Homily 2, cited in Luigi Gambero, S.M., Mary and the Fathers of the Church (San Francisco, California: Ignatius, 1999) pp. 262-263].

Simply, the focus of the Catholic Church in teaching Mary’s perpetual virginity is on Christ, the Son of God and the Son of Mary, and not on Mary herself. They made sure that Christ was the one deified and not Mary.

This is an old, old regurgitated lie! Catholics don’t deify Mary, period. Rodimus again did not bother to present proof that in teaching Mary’s perpetual virginity, we are making her a goddess. I challenge Rodimus to give us some quotes from official Catholic sources that teach that Mary’s perpetual virginity makes her a goddess.

Evangelical Prof. Tim Perry, in assessing the patristic teaching on Mary’s perpetual virginity, states: “It is in these christological and soteriological contexts that Mary’s virginity – whether ante partum, in partu or post partum – arises” [Tim Perry, Mary for Evangelicals (Downers Grove, IL: Inter Varsity Press, 2006) p. 150].

Pope Leo the Great (ca. 400-461) affirmed Mary’s perpetual virginity in its incarnational context in his letter to the Bishop of Constantinople:

He was truly conceived of the Holy Spirit within the womb of his Virgin Mother, who bore him while preserving her virginity just as, preserving her virginity, she conceived him … Fecundity was given to the Virgin by the Holy Spirit, but the reality was taken from her body … He was born in a “new type of birth” in that undefiled virginity experienced no concupiscence, yet supplied the material for the flesh. From the Mother the Lord took his nature, but no fault; and the Lord Jesus Christ, born from a virgins womb, does not have a nature different from ours just because his birth was an unusual one” [Pope St. Leo the Great, Sermon 22: 25 December 441; quoted in Tim Perry, Mary for Evangelicals (Downers Grove, IL: Inter Varsity Press, 2006) p. 159].

In the quotation I gave above, Theodotus of Ancyra underscored the Lord’s divinity when he defended Mary’s perpetual virginity. In no way did he deify Mary. That’s our Catholic faith. Sadly, the Bereans are like ostriches who bury their heads in the sand. They don’t see the real score. Their anti-Catholic prejudice and bias have blinded them no end. I pray for God’s grace alone to penetrate their opaque minds.

MORE: I asked Rodimus the question that if in believing Mary’s perpetual virginity, were the Reformers heretics? If so, Protestantism (and all its offshoots) was founded by heretics. If they were wrong on Mary’s perpetual virginity, they can be wrong on so many things. Rodimus cannot categorically say if the Reformers were heretics in believing the perpetual virginity of Mary. All Rodimus could say is that the focus of the reformers was on Christ and not on Mary and they made sure that Christ was “deified” and not Mary.

It is thus clear that for Rodimus and the Bereans, the issue is not Mary’s perpetual virginity per se but the motive, reason or intent for such a belief. It would thus seem that for Rodimus, it is alright for you to believe in Mary’s perpetual virginity as long as you focus on Christ and not on Mary and as long as you deify Christ and not Mary.

So why is Rodimus especially hard on us Catholics who believe in Mary’s perpetual virginity when, as I have explained, the focus of our belief that Mary is ever-virgin is her Son Jesus Christ. In teaching and believing the perpetual virginity of Mary, we Catholics in no way make her a goddess or a member of the Godhead.

Rodimus’ and the Bereans double standard explains their implacable hatred for Catholicism. Their hardcore hatred for all things Catholic has clouded their rational judgment.

If the belief in Mary’s perpetual virginity per se is not heresy, Rodimus has absolutely nothing to crow about Catholics who believe that teaching.
The process of changing wasn’t overnight and the task of reforming may have been extended to their successors.

That’s not reform. It is a REGRESSION! The belief that Mary had other children, which modern evangelicals now believe contrary to the unanimous voice of Christianity up until the reformation, is a drawback to the belief of heretical individuals and sects like Helvidius, Jovinian, the Antidicomarianites, Ebionites, certain Arians, Eudocius and Eunomius [Cf. Luigi Gambero, S.M., Mary and the Fathers of the Church [San Francisco, California: Ignatius Press, 1999] pp. 122-123].

And so, my question remains hanging in the air: “Why did the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, teach the heretics the truth which He did not teach mainstream and orthodox Christians?”

May I add: “Why did the Holy Spirit teach to the evangelicals of today what He taught to the heretics of yesterday?”

And by the way, of the THOUSANDS of Protestant groups’ who are the successors of the reformers? Many Lutherans (Martin Luther’s successors) and Anglicans believe in Mary’s perpetual virginity. Were they not touched by the so-called on-going reform?

The accountant miserably failed to account for the following:

1. The Reformers read the same Bible as Rodimus and other evangelicals read. How come they had a different conclusion?

2. Why do modern day Protestants do not anymore believe in the doctrine of Mary’s perpetual virginity, a doctrine which was asserted and defended even by their very own founders?

3. Why is there contradiction between the position of the Reformers and modern evangelicals?

4. In believing Mary’s perpetual virginity, were the Reformers heretics? If so, Protestantism (and all its offshoots) was founded by heretics. If they were wrong on Mary’s perpetual virginity, they can be wrong on so many things.

5. If the belief in Mary’s perpetual virginity is not heresy, then what is Rodimus crowing about?

The accountant has clearly settled for something unbalanced. The “apologetics auditor,” after having been audited, has been weighed but found wanting.

[Note: more on the other issues]

Posted in Bereans, Converts, Doctrinal Comparison, THE CATHOLIC CHURCH HAS THE ANSWER, Virgin Mary | Leave a Comment »

FALSE AND SELF-SERVING CONCLUSIONS OF RODIMUS FALL FLAT ON HIS FACE by Atty. Marwil Llasos

Posted by catholicfaithdefender on March 9, 2009

FALSE AND SELF-SERVING CONCLUSIONS OF RODIMUS FALL FLAT ON HIS FACE by Atty. Marwil Llasos

Link:http://thesplendorofthechurch.blogspot.com/2009/03/false-and-self-serving-conclusions-of.html

FALSE AND SELF-SERVING CONCLUSIONS OF RODIMUS FALL FLAT ON HIS FACE!!!
“Theories concocted by men often lead to inconsistencies when it tested. Mary had other children after the virgin birth of Christ. Matthew 13:55-56 has stated this to be so. Sadly, Roman Catholics offer different perspectives on the verse which lead to complications. The Bible was not meant to adjust to the desires of men, but men should adjust themselves to the Bible. If we only let the Bible speak for itself, Roman Catholics would renounce the Perpetual Virginity of Mary.”
Thus saith Rodimus!
We shall analyze this conclusion if it holds up to Biblical scrutiny, church history, logic and plain common sense.

“Theories concocted by men often lead to inconsistencies when it tested.”

Rodimus is fond of generalization. Until now, he cannot tell us who precisely were these men who “concocted” the teaching on Mary’s perpetual virginity. Rodimus cannot name names. He is long on sweeping allegations but short on specifics. On the other hand, evangelical writer and scholar, Prof. Tim Perry states –

“There is more to the creedal affirmation that Christ was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary than the virginal conception. It entails that Mary’s virginity is in some sense ongoing. Not only was she a virgin, but she remains one. This is the doctrine of Mary’s perpetual virginity, but she remains one. This is the doctrine of Mary’s perpetual virginity. Traditionally, this has been explained in terms of three chronological moments: Mary was virgin at the time of Christ’s conception (virginity ante partum), remained a virgin in the act of giving birth (virginity in partu) and persisted in virginity thereafter (virginity post partum). This belief is both ancient and catholic, not only spanning East and West but also was, until the last two hundreds of years or so, broadly accepted by Protestant Christians [Tim Perry, Mary for Evangelicals (Downer’s Grove, Illinois: Inter Varsity Press, 2006) p. 280-282].

Mary had other children after the virgin birth of Christ. Matthew 13:55-56 has stated this to be so.

This is just Rodimus’ personal opinion. Nowhere in the Bible can we find a verse that says that Mary had other children after the virgin birth of Christ. Rodimus’ reliance on Matthew 13:55-56 to prove that Mary had other children is misplaced. The verse doesn’t say that Mary is the mother of Jesus’ brothers. If Matthew wanted to convey the astounding truth that Mary had other children, he could have done so.

Rodimus can keep his opinion for himself. There are evangelicals who don’t share his view that Matthew 13:55-56 as fool-proof basis for the proposition that Mary had other children.

Evangelical David Gustafson, in his debate with Catholic Dwight Longenecker admitted: “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].

If the Gospel account in Matthew 13:55 is not absolutely decisive on whether Mary had other children, then what is?

I raised the challenge before and I raise it again: Rodimus should 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.”

Matthew 13:55 just won’t do. More on this later.

Sadly, Roman Catholics offer different perspectives on the verse which lead to complications.

Complications exist only in the bigoted mind of Rodimus. The opacity of his anti-Catholic thinking prevents him to see the light. He has already made up his mind. So, no matter what perspective we offer, Rodimus would just simply brush it aside because he is cocky sure of his own position (which other evangelicals do not share).

We have explained to the point of being trite that our perspectives on Matthew 13:55-56 are not mutually exclusive nor contradictory. Truth, no matter from which perspective you look at it, remains truth simply because truth is indivisible. We Catholics look at every possible angle, consider every possible argument and traverse every possible channel. We may not always necessarily agree on each other’s reasoning, but we do agree in the result. We know how to distinguish what is essential from the non-essential. In the case of Mary’s perpetual virginity, even if we explore each and every possible argument on the issue, we do concur in the result, i.e., that the so-called brothers of Jesus Christ in Matthew 13:55-56 are not Mary’s children.

Rodimus must remove the hardened mote in his eyes. He should look around his own backyard to see the unfortunate divisions and glaring contradictions there. If Rodimus succeeds in cleaning up his own backyard, then he can perhaps train his guns again on the Catholic Church.

“You therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge the other, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things” (Rom. 2:1).

“So when you, a mere man, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God’s judgment? (Rom. 3:3).

The Bible was not meant to adjust to the desires of men, but men should adjust themselves to the Bible.

This is plain sloganeering. Nevertheless, I do agree with it. That’s why I firmly believe that Rodimus must adjust himself to the Bible and not the Bible to himself.
So much of Rodimus’ speculations, assumptions and conclusions are not only unbiblical but anti-biblical.

If we only let the Bible speak for itself, Roman Catholics would renounce the Perpetual Virginity of Mary.”

We do let the Bible speak for itself. It doesn’t say that Mary had other children. Neither does it say that the so-called brothers of Jesus are Mary’s children. Rodimus continues to stifle the voice of the Bible by insisting on his erroneous conclusions.

For over two thousand years, we let the Bible speak for itself on the issue of Mary’s perpetual virginity. Thus, Protestant Reformers even after cooking up sola scriptura did not renounce the Perpetual Virginity of Mary. Neither can we.

Posted in Bereans, Debate, Doctrinal Comparison, Virgin Mary | 1 Comment »

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

Posted in Bereans, Debate, Doctrinal Comparison, How to Help others become Catholic, THE CATHOLIC CHURCH HAS THE ANSWER | 1 Comment »

THE ACCURACY OF THE INACCURACY OF THE BEREAN PASTORS

Posted by catholicfaithdefender on February 16, 2009

THE ACCURACY OF THE INACCURACY OF THE BEREAN PASTORS

Link: http://thesplendorofthechurch.blogspot.com/2009/02/accuracy-of-inaccuracy-of-berean.html

Can I take a Look at your Face Pastor Berean?

Few days ago I posted about the visit Bro. Franz and I made as a courtesy to Bro. Henry Siy, the Chairman of Defensores and Bro. Marwil Llasos. I mentioned that the Berean Pastors are refusing to accept the CHALLENGE OF CATHOLIC APOLOGISTS TO DEBATE THEM IN PUBLIC. Well, actually this is what I wrote:

“The two informed us that personal communications are on-going between the Berean pastors and our apologists. We have offered them the challenge for public debates but they politely declined. They also refused to defend in public the books of Anthony Pezzota despite the fact that it is in their recommended list. As usual Bro. Mars regaled us with his wit and humor against the enemies of the faith.”

That small paragraph seems to have incensed the Bereans… [well, they do not use Incense… that is exclusive to the Angels in the Book of Revelation and the Roman Catholic Church acolytes]. It earned their attention to the point that they called the Prophet Elijah from his chariot of fire in Heaven and sent him back to earth to visit this Blog. That Prophet if indeed he is the real Elijah appeared to be harmless. Here is his message:

Anonymous said…

Hi,

I am a moderator in the Bereans forum.. I just wanna ask coz you said here..[quote]The two informed us that personal communications are on-going between the Berean pastors and our apologists.[/quote]May I ask who are the Berean pastors that you are sayin? Just askin…

Thanks,

Propeta Elias

Confronted by an alleged Prophet I decided to summon the Patriarch Abraham the Justified One in order to respond on my behalf. Here is the answer of the Venerable Ancestor:
Hi to you too,
Grace and Peace be upon you.
Thank you very much for visiting our blog.
Concerning the names of your pastors in direct communication with the Defensores leaders I don’t think that it is proper for me to reveal their name in public because they are not personally communicating with me. Therefore, I suggest that you ask your pastors who among them are discussing with our apologists. Or you can direct the question to our Defensores Fidei chairman Bro. Henry Siy. For sure you have his address and contact number or e-mail.
My latest news is that your pastors refused the challenge for a formal debate.
The challenge of Atty. Llasos to the Berean pastors to defend in public the anti-Marian attacks of Anthony Pezzota is public. It was posted in his blog and in mine and in many other sites. If ever you wish to accept that challenge we will be very glad. The debate topic is not limited to Marian doctrines, it could be your cherished Sola Fide and Sola Scriptura or OSAS, etc.
Besides Bro. Mars, the Catholic Faith Defenders of Cebu and Davao are also eager to debate you and your company in the public plaza of the said cities.
Another reason why I don’t want to reveal the names of your pastors publicly because your company seems to be comfortable being incognito. Unlike our apologists whose faces and identity are revealed in public. Very interesting isn’t it?
We are praying for the day that just like James White and Walter Martin, the Berean pastors will have the courage to debate their Catholic counterparts in public plazas or in front of the camera in a face to face encounter.
Anyway, we respect your decision to remain anonymous and to refuse formal debates. It’s your choice. Just inform us if you are ready. Bro. El Cid is awaiting your reply with bated breath.
Patriarch Abraham
Since then I haven’t heard again from Prophet Elijah. I supposed that he returned to heaven with a chariot of fire leaving behind his cloak to the Prophet Elisha. But, no Elisha appeared as well instead I was informed by KAPATAS that a certain Rodimus posted in the Berean Forum entitled Fr. Abe Arganiosa’s Inaccuracy.
What a very Prophetic Act from the Bereans. If my message is inaccurate I expect their ‘honorable’ and ‘justified’ and ‘saved’ and ‘predestined’ prophets or mercinaries to respond in my Blog and settle the score here. If ever there is something wrong with what I have written then I can correct or their comments and explanations in the comment section will suffice. Instead they made a topic out of me in their Forum. Muchas Gracias!
There are some points I want to clarify on this matter:
1. Now, since our Blog is being read by Catholic Apologists I have received a lot of information from several Catholic Apologists who sent FORMAL LETTERS OF DEBATE CHALLENGE TO RODIMUS AND HIS COHORTS FOR A ONE ON ONE, FACE TO FACE MEET YET NOT A SINGLE LETTER HAS BEEN ANSWERED. The Challenge of Bro. Mars is only a tip of a Rock Mountain called Petros. Prof. Rey Entila of Catholic Faith Defender sent a formal letter as well through Rodimus’ pastor in Davao but NO ANSWER. Then, Bro. Ryan Mejillano the young, topnotch debater of Catholic Faith Defender in Davao went to the Office of Pastor Jurem in Davao personally but NO RESPONSE at all. Pastor Jurem didn’t even appear to meet our apologist
THE BEREANS REFUSE THE CHALLENGES FROM CATHOLIC APOLOGISTS WHILE OUR KNIGHTS COMPOSED MOSTLY OF YOUNG CATHOLICS ARE VALIANTLY DEBATING THEM IN THEIR FORUM, IN THEIR OWN TERRITORY AND ON THEIR OWN RULES. YET THEY DON’T WANT TO GET OUT OF THEIR SHELLS TO FACE OUR WARRIORS IN PUBLIC PLAZA AND IN FRONT OF THE CAMERA.
I remember that during the 80’s the Evangelicals were so courageous. They were issuing challenges left and right. And many Catholics were left helpless against their vicious attacks. Now, it seems that they have lost their courage. Is this Fear or simply Cowardice?
2. ARE THE BEREANS EVANGELICALS? Because as far as I know Christians are not hiding anytime, anywhere. The Catholics in Baghdad, in China and in Africa are proudly proclaiming their faith in public and the same thing for our Apologists here in the Philippines. Our names, addresses and photos are there for everybody to see and to enjoy. For instance, I do not even know who is Rodimus. Is it a bird, a plane, a food, an animal or what? Are his posts in the Bereans really a work of a single person or a collective effort of a group of pastors. The reason for their hiding of identity is pathetic. They simply declare to others that they are afraid for their lives or afraid of their evil doings to be unearthed or afraid to be taken into task for what they have written.
3. The apparent disunity in the Bereans. Once I read a post there claiming that they are united with each other. Then when Bro. El Cid debated them in a post where they attacked the sinful acts of priests, he fought back and pointed to the more numerous and officially upheld immoralities of their pastors. In order to save their hide from shame The Bereans ‘disowned’ their fellow Baptists and fellow Evangelicals.
The same is happening now with Pezzota. They have recommended the books of Anthony Pezzota, now that they are under attack they don’t want to defend them. They are finger pointing for the one responsible.
They have reasons to be weary. In the United States Dr. Walter Martin lost credebility after his series of debates with Fr. Pacwa while James White is getting older and weaker after debating about 30 of our Catholic Apologists while he seems to be alone on their side. Those who are debating him are mostly top notch pastors converted to the Catholic Church. And our list of Apologists in line ready to debate White is too long for this post.
That post of Rodimus is actually a tranquilizer to lessen his shame that Challenges are proliferating on the nets yet he is avoiding them all. He wants to save face in front of his readers in order to regain some dignity despite the obvious refusal to take on the Catholic Challenge. He prefers the forum style of debate wherein his ingenuity for ‘copy-paste’ is being used to the full. Nakakahiya.
IF THE BEREANS WANT TO PROVE ME WRONG THEN TELL ME ‘WHEN WILL YOU FACE BRO. MARS IN A ONE ON ONE DEBATE?’ OR MAY BE YOU WANT TO BRING A COMPANION WITH YOU FINE. THERE ARE MANY OTHER IN OUR LINE WILLING TO BE SECOND TO MARS. IT COULD BE ED DE VERA, CALOY, DR. DICKY BONCAN OR EVEN I MYSELF.
IF THE BEREANS WANT TO PROVE ME WRONG THEN TELL ME WHEN WILL YOU FACE DR. REY ENTILA, BRO. RYAN MEJILLANO AND THE CATHOLIC FAITH DEFENDERS IN DAVAO AND CEBU?
Rodimus is lying when he denied that the Berean Pastors and DFF Apologists are in communication because he himself wrote in their forum that their Justyn met with DFF. And I have proofs that Rodimus himself is exchanging messages with Bro. Carlos Antonio Palad on Sola Scriptura and exchanging e-mails even with Bro. Mars on Marian issues. These are already two Bereans and two DFF apologists so I am justified of my use of plural form when referring about communication between apologists of both sides.
And it is equally true that Rodimus and the other Bereans are refusing to take the formal Challenges of Catholic Apologists for a one on one, face to face debate. If this claim is inaccurate then where is their official announcement of acceptance of the said challenges? Nothing in English. Nada in Spanish. In Russian NYET NYET!

Posted in Bereans, Debate | Leave a Comment »

CATHOLIC ANSWERS VERSUS DEFENSORES FIDEI?

Posted by catholicfaithdefender on February 16, 2009

CATHOLIC ANSWERS VERSUS DEFENSORES FIDEI?
Bro. Marwil N. Llasos’ Reply to Rodimus of the Bereans

Link: http://marwil-n-llasos.blogspot.com/2009/02/catholic-answers-versus-defensores.html

It all started when I posted in my blog a critique of Chapter 11 of Dr. Anthony Pezzotta’s Truth Encounter. After some time, I learned that the evangelical Bereans Apologetics and Research Ministry (Bereans) disclaimed that it is endorsing Dr. Pezzotta’s book. This disclaimer was published in the Bereans forum. Also, one of the moderators of the Bereans informed me through email that his group is not endorsing Dr. Pezzotta’s book against Roman Catholicism. This disclaimer from the Bereans meant a little victory for this Catholic apologist. I realized that Dr. Pezzotta is virtually alone in his fight against the Catholic Church considering that his brothers in the Bereans do not even take up his cudgels.

However, the same moderator of the Bereans, one who hides behind the pseudonym RODIMUS, raised some questions regarding the perpetual virginity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. I welcomed his email with delight as in fact I told him that I was delighted to receive an email from him. Despite my initial hesitation to respond to his email because his true identity was shrouded in utmost secrecy, I replied to his email by acknowledging it and honored him as a “brother.” In that email, he specifically told me to take my time in answering back. So I did. That was how much I trusted this Christian brother. I never had any reason to doubt his word. I accorded him full faith and credit. In the first place, he seemed to be very respectful and nice.

I was genuinely sincere when I told him that I was delighted to receive his email. I told myself that finally I would have a dialogue partner who may be reasonable, fair and a sincere seeker for the truth. What I had in mind was entering into an honest and scholarly dialogue with an evangelical friend. That way, I believed that we would be raising the standard of apologetics in this country – far different from what the ADD and INC are doing.

My idea was to imitate the exchanges between MR. DWIGHT LONGENECKER (Catholic) and MR. DAVID GUSTAFSON (Evangelical). Theirs was a friendly debate – sans the acrimony and rancor that are usually noticed in religious discussions. The antagonists in fact published their discussion. The output was the book Mary: A Catholic Evangelical Debate published by Brazos Press in 2003. I purchased that book immediately after I received the email from RODIMUS. I intended to pattern our discussion to the style and manner of those two respected gentlemen. Mr. J.I. Packer, an evangelical who wrote a Foreword in the book says –

“I liked this book, and commend it, for several reasons.

First of all, I appreciated its tone. It is a fine example of a literary form that is deservedly popular nowadays in Christian circles, namely the friendly debate. In debates of this kind, which are more than formal dialogues or informal chat while remaining less than all-out war, empathy moderates argument, the significance of positions to their protagonists is probed, and the verdict that each is partly right and partly wrong becomes possible. Such interaction gets readers further faster than old-fashioned polemics can do, and this is doubly so when, as here, questions are set at key points to draw them into the conversation on their own account. Full marks, then, for attitude and angle. And the exchange itself is well-informed, fair-minded, and clearheaded. Full marks again” [Dwight Longenecker and David Gustafson, Mary: A Catholic-Evangelical Debate (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Brazos Press, 2003) p. 13].

I also purchased the book Mary for Evangelicals (Downers Grove, IL: Inter Varsity Press, 2006) by Tim Perry. I like Prof. Tim Perry and his book a lot. Although I disagree with him on so many points, I respect his honesty and scholarship. Prof. Tim Perry’s credentials are by any standards superior to RODIMUS. Prof. Perry is an Associate of Theology in Providence Collge (Manitoba, Canada), columnist for Faith Today and a published author.

I got hold of Tim Perry’s Mary for Evangelicals because I wanted to know where an evangelical is coming from when it comes to the issue of the Blessed Virgin Mary. I don’t want to be accused of misrepresenting the evangelical position. My sense of justice and fairness as a human rights lawyer cannot permit anything less.

Sadly, my romantic notion of a beautiful and amicable discourse vanished in thin air. I was jolted by a rude reality check.

This happened last February 6, 2009 when I again received an email from the same Bereans moderator, RODIMUS. He sent me another query regarding the position of Mr. Jason Evert of Catholic Answers. He nicely told me that he was not following up on my answer but was just giving another question.

Little did I suspect that, while not yet waiting for my answer (in fact even before he emailed me his question) RODIMUS already posted in his blog an article with a very catchy title: CATHOLIC ANSWERS VERSUS DEFENSORES FIDEI. The impression he was obviously trying to convey is that the two Catholic apologetics organizations, one in the U.S. and the other in the Philippines, are opposed to each other. He said: “However, I have noted conflicting positions from two Roman Catholic apologists. One is from the USA, Jason Evert, a writer of Catholic Answers. And the other is Atty. Marwil Llasos, a resource person for Mariology of the Defensores Fidei Foundation in the Philippines.” RODIMUS also concluded: “The Roman Catholics are desperate that they concoct some spurious theories to obscure the truth without realizing it backfires on them. The glaring contradiction above is just one of the many.”

To be honest, I was hurt, nay, felt betrayed. All the while I thought that he would wait for my response before he would post anything. I was wrong. It turned out that even before he got my answer, he already made his mind and posted in his blog his accusations and conclusions against me and Defensores Fidei Foundation of which I am a member, the Catholic Church, and more importantly, the Blessed Mother’s perpetual virginity.

I felt bad by this “sneak attack,” if I may call it that. I was not upset by his accusations because I know in my heart of hearts that I can answer them. What I resent was the manner by which he wanted to deliver his point or message across. Upon reading his blog, I posted a comment there reminding him of his promise: “I remember you said that I can take my time and you will wait for my response patiently. I am holding on to that assurance from you. However, I didn’t know that you already posted the issue here in your blog.”

I also pleaded to his readers to suspend their judgment before I have responded to the issues raised by RODIMUS. I wrote: “To those who may have read your blog, may I appeal that they withold their judgment before I have given my piece.” For good measure, I quoted Proverbs 18:13 from God’s Word Translation that says: “Whoever gives an answer before he listens is stupid and shameful.”

Sadly, the actuations of RODIMUS reminded me of what the Japanese Empire did at the outbreak of WWII. While Japanese ambassadors were talking peace and professing friendship at Washington, DC, the Japs were already attacking Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. That prompted US President Franklin D. Roosevelt denounced such perfidious and cowardly attack: “This is a day of infamy.”

I believe that what RODIMUS did was rather perfidious and sly. I don’t expect it from the hands of a Christian brother. With all due respect, I found it to be un-Christian. Last time I checked the Sacred Scriptures which we both profess to be the Word of God, treachery is not one of the Christian virtues. I was really very much disappointed.

At any rate, let me respond briefly to the attacks of the Berean’s RODIMUS.

My initial impression of RODIMUSarticle is that it is more polemical rather than scholarly. It is even amateurish and puerile, to say the least.

The first tactic that I noticed is the classic Divide and Conquer Tactic. RODIMUS skillfully made it appear that the US-based CATHOLIC ANSWERS and our very own DEFENSORES FIDEI contradict each other’s position. Nothing can be farther than the truth. As I will explain, the supposed contradiction is more apparent rather than real.

I understand why RODIMUS employed that tactic. Misery loves company. I think that he is privy to the divisions, if not contradictions, extant in evangelicalism that he is now trying with all his might to prove that Catholics are also divided as the evangelicals are. This is the case of the pot calling the kettle black.

RODIMUS harped on Mr. Evert’s caveat: “Here is a common misconception to be on the lookout for: ‘Catholics teach that the brothers were actually cousins.’ That’s not the Catholic position.” He pitted Mr. Everet’s statement to my argument that James, Joses, Judas and Simon mentioned in Mark 6:3 and Mathew 13:55-56 are the “brothers” of Jesus because they are His “cousins.”

I noticed that RODIMUS was only interested in my conclusion. He did not even bother to contest, much less refute, the premises on which I predicated my conclusion. It seems to me that my friend’s desire is merely to involve me in contradiction.

As I stated earlier, the contradiction in the mind of my good friend RODIMUS is only apparent rather than real. Mr. Evert merely stated his conclusion that it is not the official Catholic position that the “brothers” of Jesus are actually His cousins. It simply means that the Lord’s brothers should not always be taken to mean as His cousins simply because the word “brother” in Hebrew as well as in Aramaic have a more encompassing meaning. The Bible offers various meanings to “brothers” which cannot be restricted to siblings alone. Thus, it is equally true that it is not the official position of the Catholic Church that the so-called “brothers” of Jesus may not be His “cousins.” May I refer you to the Catechism of the Catholic Church –

“Against this doctrine [of perpetual virginity of Mary] the objection is sometimes raised that the Bible mentions brothers and sisters of Jesus. The Church has always understood these passages as not referring to other children of the Virgin Mary. In fact James and Joseph, “brothers of Jesus,” are the sons of another Mary, a disciple of Christ, whom St. Matthew significantly calls “the other Mary.” They are close relations of Jesus, according to an Old Testament expression.” [par. 500, Catechism of the Catholic Church (Manila: ECCE Word and Life Publications, 1994) p. 124]. (emphasis added)

Simply, there is no contradiction between Mr. Evert’s statement and my conclusion. Both are actually correct. So, Mr. Everet is correct in saying that that it is not the official Catholic position that the “brothers” of Jesus are not actually his cousins because as we can see, the official position of the Catholic Church mentioned in the Catechism is that these “brothers” are “close relations of Jesus” and did not use the word “cousins” to refer to them. However, my position is also correct because “cousins” are also “close relations.” The Church’s canon law as well as our own Family Code prohibits marriage between cousins up to a certain degree because of the close blood relationship that exists between them. Thus, as far as I’m concerned, my cousins are my close relatives. I just don’t know if RODIMUS considers his cousins as distant relatives.

Again, let us read Mr. Evert’s statement –

“Here is a common misconception to be on the lookout for: “Catholics teach that the brothers were actually cousins.” That’s not the Catholic position. In fact, we can’t tell if any of the “brothers” were cousins. All the Church affirms is that they were not children of Mary. They could have been children of Joseph from a prior marriage. But the specific word for cousin (anepsios) probably would not have been used in Matthew 13:55 unless all the “brothers” were cousins. If even one of them was not a cousin, the more general term “adelphoi” covers the situation. Even if all of them were cousins, the term “brother” could still be used by Matthew to appropriately describe them.”

RODIMUS made a serious misreading of Mr. Evert’s statement. RODIMUS claims that Mr. Evert “made it clear that in Matthew 13:55, these men were not Christ’s cousins; it’s a misconceptionRODIMUS.” RODIMUS’ conclusion is not accurate. He clearly misrepresents Mr. Evert’s view. Mr. Evert did not categorically say, as RODIMUS would have us believe, that Jesus brothers are not His cousins. In fact, all that Mr. Evert is saying is that “we can’t tell if any of the ‘brothers’ were cousins.” Furthermore, Mr. Evert theoretically argued that “the specific word for cousin (anepsios) probably would have not been used in Matthew 13:55 unless all the “brothers” were cousins.” Finally, Mr. Evert pointerd out: “If even one of them was not a cousin, the more general term “adelphoi” covers the situation. Even if all of them were cousins, the term “brother” could still be used by Matthew to appropriately describe them.”
Mr. Evert and I are in full agreement that the so-called “brothers” of Jesus are not the children of Mary. Mr. Evert was categorical: “All the Church affirms is that they were not children of Mary.” Where’s the contradiction there? In my critique of Dr. Pezzotta, I also mentioned that the “brothers” and “sisters” of Jesus were not said to be the “children of Mary.”

RODIMUS never realized that the arguments in support of Catholic teachings constitute a vast arsenal. There are many weapons in that arsenal. Catholic apologists may choose the weapon that best suits them. There are so many ways to skin a cat.

What is necessary in this discussion is that Catholics, apologist or not, agree on essential things. It’s enough that we are united in our belief in Mary’s perpetual virginity. The thesis to be proven, which the Church affirms and both I and Mr. Evert are unanimous about, is that the so-called “brothers” of Our Lord are not the children of Mary. There is so much room for argumentation on how one arrives at that conclusion. As I said, we are free to choose from our arsenal the weapon that best suits us.

In disputations, there is such a thing as “alternative argumentation.” This is case where we argue “assuming ex gratia argumenti” or “assuming arguendo.” In English, it goes something like “granting for the sake of argument” or “granting without admitting.” This is a valid form of argumentation.

That is what Mr. Evert and I precisely did! We presented alternative arguments. These alternative arguments in no way compromise the thesis that the “brothers” of the Lord were not children of Mary.

I don’t know what makes it difficult for RODIMUS to see that. Maybe, his anti-Catholic bigotry already clouded his thinking which I hope not.
Notice how Mr. Evert constructed his argument:

1. The Church affirms that they were not children of Mary;
2. We can’t tell if any of the “brothers” were cousins;
3. They could have been children of Joseph from a prior marriage;
4. But the specific word for cousin (anepsios) probably would not have been used in Matthew 13:55 unless all the “brothers” were cousins.
5. If even one of them was not a cousin, the more general term “adelphoi” covers the situation.
6. Even if all of them were cousins, the term “brother” could still be used by Matthew to appropriately describe them.”

It is clear that Mr. Evert used alternative arguments as can be noticed in the words he employed: “could have been;” “probably would not have been,” “if even” (or “even if” – i.e., “assuming for the sake of argument”).

Thus said, the sweeping and hasty conclusion of RODIMUS that “The Roman Catholics are desperate that they concoct some spurious theories to obscure the truth without realizing it backfires on them. The glaring contradiction above is just one of the many,” is utterly baseless. It has no leg to stand on.

Without having proven anything, RODIMUS categorically concluded that Mary had other children aside from Jesus. He said: “They (sic) way I see it, the Perpetual Virginity of Mary is impossible to be proven because the New Testament has many verses that proves that Mary had other children after giving birth of Christ. Matthew 13:55 and 56 is very comprehensive about it.”

This is assumptio non probata. RODIMUS claims that Mary’s perpetual virginity is impossible to be proven because the New Testament has many verses that proves (sic) that Mary had other children after giving birth of Christ. What are these many verses? RODIMUS mentioned only Matthew 13:55-56 which is allegedly “very comprehensive about it.”

I’m sorry to state that RODIMUS statement that Mary had other children is an UNBIBLICAL assertion. Now I want RODIMUS to show me only two (2) verses in the Bible to prove his point:

(1) Where in the Bible does it say that “Mary had other children aside from Jesus?”
(2) Where in the Bible does it say that “Mary is the mother of the brothers of Jesus?”

Not unless RODIMUS can show these two verses, he has failed to debunk the dogma of Mary’s perpetual virginity. I have other questions to ask but I will reserve them in some future time. It would suffice for the moment for RODIMUS to give me these two verses.

RODIMUS reliance on Matthew 13:55-56 as the supposedly “very comprehensive” verse that proves that Mary had other children is misplaced. The verse does not say say that the “brothers” of Jesus are the children of Mary. In fact, a parallel verse in Mark 6:3 refers to Jesus as “THE son of Mary.” The article “the” is significant in Greek because it signifies “the one and only.” Jesus, being the Son of Mary, means that He is Mary’s only Son in the same manner that Jesus, being the Son of God, means that he is the only-begotten Son of the Father.

Without any shred of proof acceptable to the reasonable mind, RODIMUS concluded that the “the Roman Catholics are desperate that they concoct some spurious theories to obscure the truth without realizing it backfires on them.” This brazen accusation holds no water.

Who are these desperate Roman Catholics who concocted the “spurious theory” of Mary’s perpetual virginity?

When did these desperate Roman Catholics concoct the spurious “spurious theory” of Mary’s perpetual virginity?

I want RODIMUS or any of his colleagues in the Bereans to tell me the exact day, month and year when the Catholic Church concocted the “theory” of Mary’s perpetual virginity.

Exodus 23:1 says: >“Do not spread false reports. Do not help a wicked man by being a malicious witness.”

I am also bothered by RODIMUS fixation on the Catholic Church as though it is the only church that teaches Mary’s perpetual virginity. It creates the impression that only Catholics believe in Mary’s perpetual virginity. My friend must have forgotten that there are also such things as the Orthodox churches who believe the same dogma as we Catholics do.

I studied the history of the early Church and I found out that we Catholics who believe in Mary’s perpetual virginity are in good company. Early Christians, we call them Church Fathers, believed in Mary’s perpetual virginity. These men of learning and piety include Origen, Hilary of Poitiers, Athanasius: Epiphanius of Salamis Didymus the Blind, Ambrose of Milan, Pope Siricius I, Augustine, Leporius, Cyril of Alexandria and Pope Leo I.

Jerome, the great Scripture scholar, stingingly rebuked Helvidius in a treatise on Mary’s perpetual virginity: “I was requested by certain of the brethren not long ago to reply to a pamphlet written by one Helvidius. I have deferred doing so, not because it is a difficult matter to maintain the truth and refute an ignorant boor who has scarcely known the first glimmer of learning, but because I was afraid my reply might make him appear worth defending….! I must call upon the Holy Spirit to express His meaning by my mouth and defend the virginity of the Blessed Mary. I must call upon the Lord Jesus to guard the sacred lodging of the womb in which He abode for ten months from all suspicion of sexual intercourse. And I must also entreat God the Father to show that the mother of His Son, who was mother before she was a bride, continued a Virgin after her Son was born” [St. Jerome, De perpetua virginitate Beatae Mariae adversus Helvidium. Migne, Patrology, PL 23, 183-206. For more excerpts on the topic, see: William A. Jurgens, The Faith of the Early Fathers Vol. II (Minnesota: Liturgical Press, 1979) 190-191].

On the other hand, I also found out that the early opponents of Mary’s perpetual virginity were known as the Antidicomarianites. These were an Eastern sect which flourished about A. D. 200 to 400. They were so designated as the “opponents of Mary.” The other heretics who denied Mary’s perpetual virginity were the Ebionites. They were the first to maintain that Our Lord was merely the son of Joseph and Mary. This doctrine became repugnant even to their own adherents. Later on, they modified it so as to teach that, although Our Lord was born of Mary through the Holy Spirit, afterwards Joseph and Mary lived in wedlock and had many other children (modern Protestants and evangelicals like RODIMUS follow this view). The sect denied the formula “ever-Virgin Mary” used in the Greek and Latin liturgies. The earliest reference to this sect appears in Tertullian, and the doctrines taught by them are expressly mentioned by Origen (Homilia in Lucam, III, 940). Certain Arians, Eudocius and Eunomius – all heretics! – were great supporters of the teaching. The sect attained its greatest development in Arabia towards the end of the fourth century, and the name Antidicomarianites was specifically applied to it by St. Epiphanius of Salamis who wrote vigorously against them in an interesting letter giving the history of the doctrine and presenting proofs of its falsity (St. Epiphanius of Salamis, Contra Haeres., lxxviii, 1033 sqq.). [Cf. Luigi Gambero, S.M., Mary and the Fathers of the Church (San Francisco, California: Ignatius Press, 1999) 122-123].

Beware of the company you keep, RODIMUS.

Why did the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, teach the heretics the truth which He did not teach mainstream and orthodox Christians?

Even the Reformers believed the “concocted spurious theory” of Mary’s perpetual virginity.

Martin Luther (1483-1546):

It is an article of faith that Mary is Mother of the Lord and still a virgin. … Christ, we believe, came forth from a womb left perfectly intact. (Weimer’s The Works of Luther, English translation by Pelikan, Concordia, St. Louis, v. 11, pp. 319-320; v. 6. p. 510.)

This immaculate and perpetual virginity forms, therefore, the just theme of our eulogy. Such was the work of the Holy Ghost, who at the Conception and birth of the Son so favoured the Virgin Mother as to impart to her fecundity while preserving inviolate her perpetual virginity.

In this work whereby she was made the Mother of God, so many and such great good things were given her that no one can grasp them. … Not only was Mary the mother of him who is born [in Bethlehem], but of him who, before the world, was eternally born of the Father, from a Mother in time and at the same time man and God. (Weimer’s The Works of Luther, English translation by Pelikan, Concordia, St. Louis, v. 7, p. 572.)

John Calvin (1509-1564):

It cannot be denied that God in choosing and destining Mary to be the Mother of his Son, granted her the highest honor. … Elizabeth called Mary Mother of the Lord, because the unity of the person in the two natures of Christ was such that she could have said that the mortal man engendered in the womb of Mary as at the same time the eternal God. (Calvini Opera, Corpus Reformatorum, Braunschweig-Berlin, 1863-1900, v. 45, p. 348, 35.)

Ulrich Zwingli (1484-1531):

I firmly believe that Mary, according to the words of the gospel as a pure Virgin brought forth for us the Son of God and in childbirth and after childbirth forever remained a pure, intact Virgin. (Zwingli Opera, Corpus Reformatorum, Berlin, 1905, v. 1, p. 424.)

These Reformers read the same Bible as RODIMUS and other evangelicals read. How come they had a different conclusion? In fact, my question to modern day Protestants is why they do not anymore believe in the doctrine of Mary’s perpetual virginity, a doctrine which was asserted and defended even by their very own founders. The contradiction it seems lies in the position of the Reformers and modern evangelicals.

In believing Mary’s perpetual virginity, were the Reformers heretics? If so, Protestantism (and all its offshoots) was founded by heretics. If they were wrong on Mary’s perpetual virginity, they can be wrong on so many things.

If the belief in Mary’s perpetual virginity is not heresy, then what is my good friend and brother RODIMUS crowing about?

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