Friday, December 31, 2010

Muslims quoting Coptic and Roman Catholic sources on Mary

Below is a video in Arabic, with English subtitles, where this Muslim is quoting Coptic and Roman Catholic sources on their views of Mary. It is impossible to tell what the Latin words are behind the Arabic sources, if at all, since all the sources the Muslim quotes from are in Arabic. Maybe the Coptic church and other Orthodox groups don't make those distinctions that the RCC does in official documents. (distinctions between latria and dulia and hyperdulia don't seem to be communicated at all by the sources or the Arabic speaking Muslim. He says that the Coptic Church and RCC "idolize" (I don't know that word he used.) and worship (ebaudat; and abd) Mary. He quotes from the late John Paul II also. I can recognize some of the words because we have many of these words in Farsi. They use a word for worship ( ebaudat; عباده - Arabic or عبادت (Farsi/Persian).

The video is an answer to the Coptic priest, Zacharia Boutros and that he maintained that the Coptic church (and the RC and EO) officially have never worshiped Mary and that she has never been part of the Trinity, which is what the Qur'an seems to say in Surah 5:116 and 5:72-77 and 6:101-102.

Surah 5:72-78


لَقَدْ كَفَرَ الَّذِينَ قَالُوا إِنَّ اللَّهَ هُوَ الْمَسِيحُ ابْنُ مَرْيَمَ ۖ وَقَالَ الْمَسِيحُ يَا بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ اعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ رَبِّي وَرَبَّكُمْ ۖ إِنَّهُ مَن يُشْرِكْ بِاللَّهِ فَقَدْ حَرَّمَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ الْجَنَّةَ وَمَأْوَاهُ النَّارُ ۖ وَمَا لِلظَّالِمِينَ مِنْ أَنصَارٍ


(72) They do blaspheme who say: "Allah is Christ the son of Mary." But said Christ: "O Children of Israel! worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord." Whoever joins other gods with Allah,- Allah will forbid him the garden, and the Fire will be his abode. There will for the wrong-doers be no one to help.


لَّقَدْ كَفَرَ الَّذِينَ قَالُوا إِنَّ اللَّهَ ثَالِثُ ثَلَاثَةٍ ۘ وَمَا مِنْ إِلَٰهٍ إِلَّا إِلَٰهٌ وَاحِدٌ ۚ وَإِن لَّمْ يَنتَهُوا عَمَّا يَقُولُونَ لَيَمَسَّنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْهُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ

(73) They do blaspheme who say: Allah is one of three in a Trinity: for there is no god except One Allah. If they desist not from their word (of blasphemy), verily a grievous penalty will befall the blasphemers among them.

أَفَلَا يَتُوبُونَ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَيَسْتَغْفِرُونَهُ ۚ وَاللَّهُ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ

(74) Why turn they not to Allah, and seek His forgiveness? For Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful.


مَّا الْمَسِيحُ ابْنُ مَرْيَمَ إِلَّا رَسُولٌ قَدْ خَلَتْ مِن قَبْلِهِ الرُّسُلُ وَأُمُّهُ صِدِّيقَةٌ ۖ كَانَا يَأْكُلَانِ الطَّعَامَ ۗ انظُرْ كَيْفَ نُبَيِّنُ لَهُمُ الْآيَاتِ ثُمَّ انظُرْ أَنَّىٰ يُؤْفَكُونَ


(75) Christ the son of Mary was no more than a messenger; many were the messengers that passed away before him. His mother was a woman of truth. They had both to eat their (daily) food. See how Allah doth make His signs clear to them; yet see in what ways they are deluded away from the truth!

قُلْ أَتَعْبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ مَا لَا يَمْلِكُ لَكُمْ ضَرًّا وَلَا نَفْعًا ۚ وَاللَّهُ هُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيمُ

(76) Say: "Will ye worship, besides Allah, something which hath no power either to harm or benefit you? But Allah,- He it is that heareth and knoweth all things."


قُلْ يَا أَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ لَا تَغْلُوا فِي دِينِكُمْ غَيْرَ الْحَقِّ وَلَا تَتَّبِعُوا أَهْوَاءَ قَوْمٍ قَدْ ضَلُّوا مِن قَبْلُ وَأَضَلُّوا كَثِيرًا وَضَلُّوا عَن سَوَاءِ السَّبِيلِ

(77) Say: "O people of the Book! exceed not in your religion the bounds (of what is proper), trespassing beyond the truth, nor follow the vain desires of people who went wrong in times gone by,- who misled many, and strayed (themselves) from the even way.


لُعِنَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِن بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ عَلَىٰ لِسَانِ دَاوُودَ وَعِيسَى ابْنِ مَرْيَمَ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ بِمَا عَصَوا وَّكَانُوا يَعْتَدُونَ

(78) Curses were pronounced on those among the Children of Israel who rejected Faith, by the tongue of David and of Jesus the son of Mary: because they disobeyed and persisted in excesses.

Dr. White did an excellent job of showing in the context of the Qur'an, Surah 5:72-77, when it says that both "Isa (Jesus) and Mary ate food", that this passage, along with 5:116 thinks that Mary is part of the Trinity. (see Muhammad's Errors about Jesus

Surah 5:116

وَإِذْ قَالَ اللَّهُ يَا عِيسَى ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ أَأَنتَ قُلْتَ لِلنَّاسِ اتَّخِذُونِي وَأُمِّيَ إِلَٰهَيْنِ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ ۖ قَالَ سُبْحَانَكَ مَا يَكُونُ لِي أَنْ أَقُولَ مَا لَيْسَ لِي بِحَقٍّ ۚ إِن كُنتُ قُلْتُهُ فَقَدْ عَلِمْتَهُ ۚ تَعْلَمُ مَا فِي نَفْسِي وَلَا أَعْلَمُ مَا فِي نَفْسِكَ ۚ إِنَّكَ أَنتَ عَلَّامُ الْغُيُوبِ

(116) And behold! Allah will say: "O Jesus the son of Mary! Didst thou say unto men, worship me and my mother as gods in derogation of Allah´?" He will say: "Glory to Thee! never could I say what I had no right (to say). Had I said such a thing, thou wouldst indeed have known it. Thou knowest what is in my heart, Thou I know not what is in Thine. For Thou knowest in full all that is hidden.

Surah 6:101 - this shows that the Qur'an and Muslim automatically think "Son of God" means that God had a wife.

بَدِيعُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ ۖ أَنَّىٰ يَكُونُ لَهُ وَلَدٌ وَلَمْ تَكُن لَّهُ صَاحِبَةٌ ۖ وَخَلَقَ كُلَّ شَيْءٍ ۖ وَهُوَ بِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ عَلِيمٌ


(101) "To Him is due the primal origin of the heavens and the earth: How can He have a son when He hath no consort? He created all things, and He hath full knowledge of all things."

Zacharia maintains that the group that worshiped Mary were the "Marians"; (and not the Coptic or other orthodox Christian groups at the time of Islam), which is probably what is known as the Collyridians,(a desert Gnostic sect in N. Arabia and what is today known as Jordan). The Collyridians prayed, bowed down, and presented wafer cakes to icons and statues of Mary.

When the Muslims see these things and read all the exalted language of Copts and Roman Catholics (and I suppose other Eastern Orthodox groups; it was unclear if the Muslim in the video quoted from other Eastern Orthodox groups), and see that these groups pray to Mary, call her "the Mother of the God", bow down before statues and icons and kiss icons and statues, and call her "the Queen of Heaven"; they don't care about the distinctions between latria and dulia and hyperdulia. And the Roman Catholic Church does a very poor job of communicating these distinctions. It really looks like they are worshiping Mary.

The Muslim in this video emphasizes the difference between "took" in 5:116 and 9:31 and "declared" worship of Mary. He asserts that the Qur'an is true because it doesn't say "they declare their worship of Mary", but rather he asserts that all these "Christians" - Roman Catholic, Orthodox, and Coptic worship Mary practically by their actions and prayers and bowing down and praises to her. So, he says it doesn't matter if you don't "declare" your worship of Mary; to the Roman Catholics and Copts and Orthodox, he is saying, "you worship her in deed and practice, while denying you worship her."

The Muslim also points out that the dogma of Mary's sinlessness, points to Mary worship. He claims that the RC sources have quotes from Ephraem the Syrian, Cyril of Alexandria, Augustine, and others on the sinlessness of Mary. He quotes from Origen, but I have never heard that Origen believed in the sinlessness of Mary. He is usually cited as someone who says that she sinned.

He also quotes from the "Christian" sources that say that because of the exchange that Mary and Jesus made - she gave Jesus is human nature, and "He gave His Mother, as a created being, the share in the divine entity". Wow.

It is clear that the Qur'an mis-understood the doctrine of the Trinity, which proves that God did not inspire the Qur'an. The true and Living God would have known what the doctrine of the Trinity is in the sixth and seventh centuries, when Islam started. The description of the Trinity is wrong in the Qur'an, the author of the Qur'an seems to have combined ideas not only from the Collyridians, but also by the nominal and orthodox churches, and other heretical "Christian" groups in the east. The more orthodox churches in Palestine and Syria at the time of Muhammad communicated the worship of Mary, by calling her "Mother of the God", and by their prayers and praises, and actions and exaltation of Mary, that she was part of the Trinity.

This is a very bad testimony to the Muslim world. Even if the RCs, Coptic Church, and EOs claim, "we don't worship Mary", it still looks like it, and smells like it, and definitely brings to them the Scriptural rebuke, "Do not do that! Worship God! (alone) (Revelation 19:10; 22:8-9; see also Acts 14:13-18)

"Then I fell at his feet to worship him, But he said to me, "Do not do that; I am a fellow servant of yours and your brethren who hold the testimony of Jesus; worship God. For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy." Revelation 19:10

"I, John, am the one who heard and saw these things And when I heard and saw,I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel who showed me these things."

But he said to me, "Do not do that, I am a fellow servant of yours and of your brethren the prophets and of those who heed the words of this book. Worship God." (Revelation 22:8-9)



This video shows not only that Muslims misunderstand the Trinity, but also that the non-Protestant groups like Oriental Orthodox, the Coptic Church, the Roman Catholic Church, and the Eastern Orthodox churches have erred in exalting Mary too much.

Evangelical Reformed Protestants say, "We told you so!"

The only remedy is for these groups, the RCC, the EO, and Oriental Orthodox Churches is to repent of this and get back to the Scriptures and have the right and biblical view of Mary.

55 comments:

David.S said...

Roman Catholics and Orthodox Christians can make the distinction between adoration and veneration all they want, but what really matters is where the rubber meets the road.

At the end of the day, Mary for them is the Mediator of all graces and the Hail Mary is The Prayer.

"Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee, blessed or thou among woman and blessed is the fruit of thy womb Jesus; Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the time of our death."

Then at of the end of the Rosary, is said;

Hail Holy Queen, our life our mercy and our hope, to thee do we cry, poor banished children of eve; to thee do we send up our sighs morning and weeping in this vale of tears. Turn then most gracious advocate thine eyes of mercy toward us and show unto us the fruit of thy womb Jesus. Oh Clement oh loving oh sweet virgin Mary, pray for us, Holy mother of God, that we be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Roman Catholics pray their Rosaries very frequently if not daily for the sole purpose, that it assures them of their righteousness.

So, they can try to make distinctions all day long, but the proof is in the pudding. They pray to Mary.

Ken said...

David.S -
Your comment implies agreement with my article; but your blog seems to affirm the Roman Catholic Church.

Which is it? Are you Roman Catholic or what?

At your blog; your quote of Revelation 12:17 is very different and strange. (and it is Revelation, not "Revelations")

And you spelled Mary wrong - it is not "Marry". Mary and Mother of God are not in the Biblical text.

"So the dragon was enraged with the woman, and went off to make war with the rest of her children, who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus. " (NASB)

Revelation 12:17

Is that (what you have at your site) a traditional interpretation by some Roman Catholics of that verse, or what?

Ikonophile said...

A biblical view of Mary can be found here:
http://orthodox-apologetics.blogspot.com/2010/12/mary-according-to-bible-video.html

(Apparently I'm not skilled enough in the combox to link the site to a single word or phrase).

And David,

Nice job putting the word "Orthodox" next to the words "Roman Catholic" and then proceeding to describe Roman Catholic practices. If you want to argue against Orthodoxy, please do not be so ignorant as to find arguments against the RCC and copy/paste the words "Eastern Orthodox" in place of the words "Roman Catholic". Our theologies differ greatly enough that the copy/paste function shows ignorance rather than articulating a proper argument.

John

Ben m said...

How great is the majesty of the Blessed Virgin!

Armchair Lutheran said...

Ken - Sorry, that was an old blog that I had forgotten about, it's been a long time since I've been active on blogs and since I've used my blogger id.

I was a Catechumen, but have since then moved over to Confessional Lutherism. I've changed my profile. Sorry again for the confusion.

Ikonophile - I've been to a area's of the world where the Orthodox Church is the predominant Church and their treatment of Mary is the same as the RCC.

I'm not being negative, I'm just simply pointing out the truth. I am very ecumenical at heart, I'm sorry if my first posting seemed at all hard lined.

One of the toughest things for me to give up when I decided to become Lutheran was my Rosary. It is a wonderful meditation and I'm really not that hung up on Mary as a mediator. But, like Luther; I personally have disagreements with Papal and Roman authority equalling and superseding holy scripture. But there are many aspects of the Catholic and Orthodox Church that I truly love.

But.... I don't think that the RCC and Orthodox Church should try to make a distinction between Veneration and Adoration, doctrinally when it's plainly obvious that in practice there is no distinction, but rather Mary tends to be the center of focus in the daily life of a Marian Catholic.

Now with that being said though.... there are "fewer" marian Catholics in the Church, in fact, in most RCC Churches now, you don't find too many parishioners with any marian devotion.

Plus the whole Mass is centered on Christ and not Mary.

scotju said...

David.S, you may not believe in praying the rosary anymore, but do you believe Mary is the mother of God, as stated in the Book of Concord?

Viisaus said...

"Now with that being said though.... there are "fewer" marian Catholics in the Church, in fact, in most RCC Churches now, you don't find too many parishioners with any marian devotion."

It is widely known that RCs have become a lot more subdued with their bigoted legacy since the days of Vatican II (and even earlier). Hardcore Trad-cats and Sedevacantists believe with justification that modern RC mainstream is brazenly betraying its heritage with this tolerant attitude.

By and large, Rome has simply exchanged the superstitious Pharisaical arrogance of its glorious old days to decadent liberal-latitudiarian indifferentism. Average RC believer has thus merely rolled from the frying pan to the fire.

James Swan said...

scotju said...
David.S, you may not believe in praying the rosary anymore, but do you believe Mary is the mother of God, as stated in the Book of Concord?


I don't have problem with "mothor of God" and I'm Reformed.

Contemporary Protestants though distance themselves from the title, “Mother of God,” and perhaps for good reason. The term has evolved in its usage. What was once a rich theological term expressing a doctrinal truth about Christ developed quickly into a venerating praise to Mary. The term Theotokos can be translated with a strong Christocentric nuance as, “the one who gave birth to the one who is God.”

Kim said...

I'm a Protestant who was looking into Orthodoxy after giving up on RC and spent several months happily worshiping in an Orthodox church. Then I was given this prayer to Mary by a friend at church who has been Orthodox all her life, and it stopped me cold in my tracks.

Then I started looking at everything I was so easily accepting with a more critical eye and read this book my husband had bought (which is excellent, btw), and as I read about the RCC I couldn't help thinking that most of what I read was describing the OC (except the magesterium parts). They are extremely similar if we want to be honest with ourselves.

My experience was that Mary was highly exalted in my OC to the point that sometimes we just "prayed" to her. It made me very uncomfortable.

Ikonophile said...

David,

I'm sorry, but I can only say that your response shows your ignorance of the differences in Roman Catholic and Orthodox theology. To say that it's all the "same" is to ignore such differences as the Immaculate Conception (known to the Orthodox and perhaps even Protestants as the Immaculate Exception), the fact that the Assumption of Mary is dogma (i.e. to disbelieve is detrimental to one's salvation) in the RCC and much more.

Granted, we both venerate her. In that, I agree. But if you study RC and EO theology in any detail, whether you agree with it or not, you will find that our differences are far greater than the seemingly apparent surface similarities.

Also, "The Prayer" in RC might be the Hail Mary, but in Orthodoxy "The Prayer" is the Jesus Prayer:

"Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, the sinner".

Mary isn't even mentioned in "The Prayer" of Orthodox Christianity.

I'm not trying to be a jerk, but it does seem to me that you lack any significant knowledge about Orthodox theology regarding Mary and her role in the Life of the Church.

If you truly are interested in understanding the differences, there is a book that I would recommend. It is by George S. Gabriel called "Mary: the Untrodden Portal of God". In this small book, Mr. Gabriel talks about the differences between Orthodox and RC theology and how Mary relates to both. I highly recommend it.

John

Kim said...

Oh, yes, and the Immaculate Conception part differs, as well. I forgot about that. But Mary is almost as highly exalted by the OC as she is in the RC. She is positively deified. Isn't it true that she wasn't spoken of in such exalted terms until around the 300's? Did the earliest of the early church fathers raise her up so high right from the start, or was it something that gradually happened over time?

Ken said...

David S/ Armchair Lutheran -
Praise God !
I am so glad to hear that you realized Roman Catholicism was wrong and that you are Lutheran.

That's great.

Yeah, your old site was really confusing. Glad you cleared that up.

What you wrote in your first post is exactly what the Muslim was saying in this video - it doesn't matter if the RCC or Copts or EOs claim they "don't worship Mary" - their prayers to her and veneration of her practically show that they do.

Ken said...

Iconophile -
I am glad your church's formal prayers are not like the RCC's "Hail Mary" prayers.

Also, thank you for helping us understand some of the differences between RCC and EO.

Eastern Orthodoxy does not believe in the Immaculate Conception of Mary, right?

That's good.

What about sinlessness of her?

What about her bodily Assumption?
You seemed to indicate it is not dogma, but just . . . what? mystery, left up to the individual? doctrine, but not dogma? pious believe of many?

Perpetual Virginity?

Does she mediate and pray for your people? Is she considered a mediatrix or co-mediator/?

The link Kim gave seems to show that the Orthodox do pray to her.

Do Eastern Orthodox meditate and pray before her icons ? Do they pray, kiss, bow to the icons of Mary?

If so, then that is a problem, for it appears to be idolatry and giving worship to a creature and a physical thing (icon) - it looks like an idol to Muslims and Protestants.

I am glad you don't have the Hail Mary prayer of RCC;

However, the link that Kim gave of Orthodox prayers to Mary seem to be the same kind of thing.

I am glad to learn more about the differences of EO vs. RCC, and the EO church seems closer to the Bible on rejecting Papal authority and the Immaculate Conception;

[this is off topic, but I understand that EO does not believe in original sin]

but farther from the Bible by not believing in original, inherited sin. (Psalm 51:4-5; Romans 5:12; Ephesians 2:1-3; Jer. 17:9, Genesis 6:5; 8:21)

John said...

We orthodox use exalted language of our clergy too. And we bow to them ( and them to us also ). Yet we are not acused of worshipping our clergy. Funny that. Maybe the concept of a distinction between latria and dulia, or between worship and non-worshipful respect is true after all, huh.

Viisaus said...

"Isn't it true that she wasn't spoken of in such exalted terms until around the 300's?"

Actually, back in the 4th century Mariolatry was still largely practised only by heretics like Collyridians - whom Epiphanius in his "Panarion" repeatedly addressed with indignation, "let no one # proskuneo # the Virgin".

Hear John Henry Newman's powerful "hostile witness" testimony on this subject:

http://www.sounddoctrine.net/Classic_Sermons/George%20Salmon/infallibility_church.htm

"Dr. Newman himself, disclaiming the doctrine that the Invocation of the Virgin is necessary to salvation, says (Letter to Pusey, p. III): 'If it were so, there would be grave reasons for doubting of the salvation of St. Chrysostom or St. Athanasius, or of the primitive martyrs. Nay, I should like to know whether St. Augustine, in all his voluminous writings, invokes her once.' But he holds (p. 63) that, though 'we have no proof that Athanasius himself had any special devotion to the Blessed Virgin,' yet, by teaching the doctrine of our Lord's Incarnation, 'he laid the foundations on which that devotion was to rest.'"


It was only after the 431 Council of Ephesus that the cult of Mary truly began to emerge within Christendom.

Viisaus said...

"We orthodox use exalted language of our clergy too. And we bow to them ( and them to us also ). Yet we are not acused of worshipping our clergy."

Relying on Matthew 23:8-12, we could easily condemn the over-veneration of clergymen as well.

Ken said...

Viisaus-
Good comments!

Is there an on line link of Ephiphanius' statement, "do not proskunew the Virgin"?

Can you give a fuller citation and reference from a book, if it is not online?

that is very good.

But the Penarion is not in the standard ecfs collections.

John said...

Condemning something does not establish idolatry, which is the accusation on the table.

And if bowing establishes over-veneration, congrats, you just proved over-veneration of the laity by the clergy. I suppose next you'll go on to prove kissing your wife is over-veneration.

Ken said...

Kissing and bowing, (along with prayers to these objects) to an inanimate object ( an icon or statue) looks like idolatry, and looks like a violation of the 1 and 2nd commandments.

Even if the answer is that the icon or statue is just a symbol of their spirit in heaven or window to them in heaven; the animist actually says the same things - they are not literally worshiping the stone or tree or mountain; rather the "spirit within or under the stone or mountain or tree."

Kissing one's wife is an expression between two living beings, also obviously not in a worship context.

I hope you watch and listen to the whole video and follow with the English sub-titles.

This is a massive bad testimony for many centuries to the Muslim world.

John said...

The Jews were commanded to bow down to the ark and to Moses' staff. I guess if you misunderstand the commandments, they look like a violation too.

And the bible wasn't written to refute animists, so irrelevant.

Viisaus said...

Well Ken, here on pages 350-351 you can see a footnote in original Greek from a short citation from Epiphanius on Collyridians - he indeed condemns "proskynesis"-worship of Mary, not "latreia"-worship:

http://www.archive.org/details/difficultiesofro00faberich


More about Epiphanius and Collyridians here, pp. 205-206 (although no citations in original Greek):

http://www.archive.org/details/apreservativeag08cummgoog

See yet here, pp. 74-75:

http://www.archive.org/details/a602976500palmuoft

Viisaus said...

"And the bible wasn't written to refute animists, so irrelevant."

You are actually quite wrong about this. Old Testament prophets were fighting against systems of idolatry (Egyptian, Canaanite, Babylonian) whose worldview was very much influenced by animistic presuppositions.

Animism does not necessarily mean "primitive" - highly cultured Greek pagans and later Japanese pagans had myriads of animistic superstitions.

Ken said...

John,
Thanks for the interaction.
Please give me an exact Scripture reverence where the Jews were commanded by God to bow down before the arc and the staff of Moses.

I would like to study the Scriptures on that.

Ken said...

Viisaus,
Thanks!

I will have to look at that later.

You always lots of good comments!

John said...

Ken: Ps 99:5 says to bow to God's footstool. This is the name they used for the Ark. (1 Ch 28:2)

I shouldn't have said they bowed to the serpent, but their looking to the serpent is equated to looking to Christ the saviour with the eyes of faith in John 3:14. And that sure sounds like religious adoration to me.

Ben m said...

By and large, Rome has simply exchanged the superstitious Pharisaical arrogance of its glorious old days to decadent liberal-latitudiarian indifferentism. Average RC believer has thus merely rolled from the frying pan to the fire.

Curious thing to say given what Protestantism owes to its Pharisee heritage! ;) (and how far do you all think your movement would have gotten without them? )

... and don't forget to read the section on Luther...!


Please give me an exact Scripture reverence where the Jews were commanded by God to bow down before the arc...

“Then Joshua tore his clothes and fell facedown to the ground before the ARK OF THE LORD, remaining there till evening. The elders of Israel DID THE SAME…” Joshua 7:6 See the Wikipedia article.

Bowing as an act of reverence was actually quite common in the Bible.

“So Moses went out to meet his father-in-law and bowed down and kissed him.” Exodus 18:7

“The company of the prophets from Jericho, who were watching, said, ‘The spirit of Elijah is resting on Elisha.’ And they went to meet him and bowed to the ground before him.” 2 Kings 2:15

Luke 24:5

And there are many more examples ... just look for them!

Course maybe all those bowing folks were Catholics (or Orthodox)! ;)

steelikat said...

Ken,

I'd like to see a rational defense of that proposition, if I'm understanding it correctly: kissing and bowing to an inanimate is literal idolatry, strictly speaking, but kissing and bowing to one's fellow man is not?

If the one is idolatry how can the other not be? both inanimate objects and human beings are mere creatures.

In most parts of the world, bowing to each other is a commonplace e everyday expression of respect and kissing takes it to the next level. In America we kiss but don't bow but that is not the international norm I think.

I think Id agree that treating an inanimate object that way could lead to suspicions of a kind of violation of the first commandment, for example superstition, but not necessarily idolatry in the strictest sense. You have to interpret it in context. What if I kiss a picture of my wife? what if I kiss a picture of Jesus? We ought not to be kissing pictures of Jesus but if I witness somebody doing that I'm not going to assume that the act has a different sort of significance than my kissing a picture of my wife. the same sorts of emotions might have lead to that and the latter is not necessarily idolatry. It depends on intent and context.

Viisaus said...

"Curious thing to say given what Protestantism owes to its Pharisee heritage! ;) (and how far do you all think your movement would have gotten without them? )"

That book by Louis Newman is dated (written in 1925), second-rate scholarship. But it would certainly suit a Tradcat bigot to see the Reformation as a mere Jewish conspiracy.

"Protestantism made its greatest stand where the Marrano Jews were active" - what a nonsensical claim. Spain and Italy had lots of Marranos and Protestantism did not get far in those territories. Meanwhile, places like northern Germany, Sweden and Scotland had very few Jews and became strongholds of Protestantism. Puritan movement in England also saw its greatest flourish BEFORE Cromwell began to allow Jews to the country.


The spiritual Pharisaism of Romanism goes a lot deeper. Is it more typical for Protestants or RCs to "build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous" (Matthew 23:29)?

http://www.ewordtoday.com/comments/matthew/mh/matthew23.htm

"Note, Carnal people can easily honour the memories of faithful ministers that are dead and gone, because they do not reprove them, nor disturb them, in their sins. Dead prophets are seers that see not, and those they can bear well enough; they do not torment them, as the living witnesses do, that bear their testimony viva voce—with a living voice, Rev. 11:10. They can pay respect to the writings of the dead prophets, which tell them what they should be; but not the reproofs of the living prophets, which tell them what they are. Sit divus, modo non sit vivus—Let there be saints; but let them not be living here. The extravagant respect which the church of Rome pays to the memory of saints departed, especially the martyrs, dedicating days and places to their names, enshrining their relics, praying to them, and offering to their images, while they make themselves drunk with the blood of the saints of their own day, is a manifest proof that they not only succeed, but exceed, the scribes and Pharisees in a counterfeit hypocritical religion, which builds the prophets' tombs, but hates the prophets' doctrine."

scotju said...

Ben M, I've read Newman's book and I found it to be a first-rate book that was well written, well researched, and very well documented. The claim that there were very few crypto-Jews in northern Europe who could have aided the Reformation is in error. There were plenty of crypto-Jews in Germany, France, England and Scotland who did lend their resources to help the Reformation. I'm a descendant of those Jews, so I should know this. the book, "When Scotland Was Jewish" tells the story of the Scottish crypto-Jews who's descendant I am. That's why I call myself ScotJu. My ancestors were Scottish Jews who passed themselves off as Scot-Irish.

Ben m said...

Viisaus,

That book by Louis Newman is dated (written in 1925), second-rate scholarship.

You’re entitled to your opinion, but I disagree, as does scotju (see his comment above).

Spain and Italy had lots of Marranos and Protestantism did not get far in those territories. Meanwhile, places like northern Germany, Sweden and Scotland had very few Jews and became strongholds of Protestantism. Puritan movement in England also saw its greatest flourish BEFORE Cromwell began to allow Jews to the country.

scotju made a good response to this above.

But even if (for the sake of argument), there really were only a few Marranos, that's beside the point. Look again at what Newman actually said:

"Protestantism made its greatest stand where the Marrano Jews were active."

He just says where the Marrano Jews were active, not necessarily where they were most populous.

The spiritual Pharisaism of Romanism goes a lot deeper. Is it more typical for Protestants or RCs to "build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous" (Matthew 23:29)?

What “prophets” have we built tombs to? Answer: none. But we do honor the saints and martyrs as do the Orthodox. As to the ridiculous charges of idolatry constantly made against Catholics (especially around here), I again appeal to St. Augustine:

“As to our paying honor to the memory of the martyrs, and the accusation of Faustus, that we worship them instead of idols, I should not care to answer such a charge, …

“It is true that Christians pay religious honor to the memory of the martyrs, both to excite us to imitate them and to obtain a share in their merits, and the assistance of their prayers.

“But we build altars not to any martyr, but to the God of martyrs, although it is to the memory of the martyrs. No one officiating at the altar in the saints' burying-place ever says, We bring an offering to you, O Peter! Or O Paul! Or O Cyprian! The offering is made to God, who gave the crown of martyrdom, while it is in memory of those thus crowned. …

“What is properly divine worship, which the Greeks call latria, and for which there is no word in Latin, both in doctrine and in practice, we give only to God. To this worship belongs the offering of sacrifices; as we see in the word idolatry, which means the giving of this worship to idols. Accordingly we never offer, or require any one to offer, sacrifice to a martyr, or to a holy soul, or to any angel. Any one falling into this error is instructed by doctrine, either in the way of correction or of caution. For holy beings themselves, whether saints or angels, refuse to accept what they know to be due to God alone.”

Contra Faustum, Book XX, 21

Ben m said...

scotju,

I've read Newman's book and I found it to be a first-rate book that was well written, well researched, and very well documented.

And it’s a part of Reformation history that one virtually never hears about!

Listen to William Thomas Walsh in his "dated" (1937) book, Philip II:

"What is equally certain, but strangely kept well in the background of most historical research, is that the Protestant Revolt, far from being an “advance” or a “progressive step,” was a long retrogression toward the moribund Judaism of the Pharisees of the time of Christ... P. 248.

"If there is exaggeration in that astonishing but almost unnoticed statement of Cabrera, himself of a Spanish Marrano family, that “most of the heresiarchs and heretics of this present century have been of those people,” it is beyond question, as a Jewish historian says, that the first leaders of the Protestant sects were called semi-Judaei, or half-Jews, in all parts of Europe, and that men of Jewish descent were as conspicuous among them as they had been among the Gnostics and would later be among the Communists.... p. 248.

"Modern research by Jewish historians has made it clear that in the sixteenth century large numbers of English Protestants (and doubtless the most active in propaganda and organization) were Jews who had put on the convenient mask of Calvinism at Antwerp. For example, “from an early period,” says Dr. Lucien Wolf, “the Marranos in Antwerp had taken an active part in the Reformation movement, and had given up their mask of Catholicism for a not less hollow pretense of Calvinism. pp. 248-249.

source

That's why I call myself ScotJu. My ancestors were Scottish Jews who passed themselves off as Scot-Irish.

That’s very interesting. I don’t know about Jewish (?) but I do have some British blood, and probably some Scottish blood somewhere as well. Who knows, maybe we’re related! ;)

ben said...

scotju,

I've read Newman's book and I found it to be a first-rate book that was well written, well researched, and very well documented.

And it’s a part of Reformation history that one virtually never hears about!

Listen to William Thomas Walsh in his "dated" (1937) book, Philip II:

"What is equally certain, but strangely kept well in the background of most historical research, is that the Protestant Revolt, far from being an “advance” or a “progressive step,” was a long retrogression toward the moribund Judaism of the Pharisees of the time of Christ... P. 248.

"If there is exaggeration in that astonishing but almost unnoticed statement of Cabrera, himself of a Spanish Marrano family, that “most of the heresiarchs and heretics of this present century have been of those people,” it is beyond question, as a Jewish historian says, that the first leaders of the Protestant sects were called semi-Judaei, or half-Jews, in all parts of Europe, and that men of Jewish descent were as conspicuous among them as they had been among the Gnostics and would later be among the Communists.... p. 248.

"Modern research by Jewish historians has made it clear that in the sixteenth century large numbers of English Protestants (and doubtless the most active in propaganda and organization) were Jews who had put on the convenient mask of Calvinism at Antwerp. For example, “from an early period,” says Dr. Lucien Wolf, “the Marranos in Antwerp had taken an active part in the Reformation movement, and had given up their mask of Catholicism for a not less hollow pretense of Calvinism. pp. 248-249.

source

ben said...

That's why I call myself ScotJu. My ancestors were Scottish Jews who passed themselves off as Scot-Irish.

That’s very interesting. I don’t know about Jewish (?) but I do have some British blood, and probably some Scottish blood somewhere as well. Who knows, maybe we’re related! ;)

John Lollard said...

... and what good Roman Catholic offensive would be complete without blaming the perfidious Jews.

scotju said...

John L, the history of Jewish individuals and groups supporting what Rabbi Newman calls "reform movements" (actally heresies) in Christian history is very well known. Maybe not to the average pewsitter, but to people such as my humble self who's research into his own family history showed I was of Ashkenazim and Sephardim crypto-Jew descent, this is common knowledge. As Ben M said, the influence of Jewish thought, moral and financial support of the Reformation is very well known to folks who take the time to study these things. I'd suggest that you might want to do the same instead of making a flippant comment abot the "perfidious Jews".

Viisaus said...

"What is equally certain, but strangely kept well in the background of most historical research, is that the Protestant Revolt, far from being an “advance” or a “progressive step,” was a long retrogression toward the moribund Judaism of the Pharisees of the time of Christ... P. 248."

This citation already tells me what an anti-Jewish, anti-Protestant crank W.T. Walsh was. A true pre-Vatican II, unreconstructed Romanist bigot. He well fits the 1930s style - as Jews were widely connected with Communism back then, right-wing RC writers felt free to assert Jewish conspiracy behind every historical revolt against Rome. And it is not only because of political correctness that modern scholarship has found such tendentious claims highly exaggerated, to put it mildly.

Even if some individual Jews or Marranos participated in the Reformation, their role was negligible - they played no decisive part. I would like to see any modern scholar would would claim otherwise.

"it is beyond question, as a Jewish historian says, that the first leaders of the Protestant sects were called semi-Judaei, or half-Jews, in all parts of Europe" - what twaddle. ben only discredits himself by uncritically repeating such nonsense. At most, this is mere re-circulation of ignorant slanders that 16th century RC propagandists made about Reformers. Jesuit writers could make some amazingly brazen whoppers about the "enemies of the faith."

(Also, some "Jewish historians" of the late 19th-early 20th era made some unsupportable claims about the influence of their countrymen out of national vanity as well.)


The spirit of the Reformation was as far from self-righteous Pharisaism as possible. Pharisees of old had nothing to do with either "Sola Scriptura" principle (being worshippers of man-made Talmudic traditions) nor "Sola Fide" gospel of grace, whereas Protestant Reformation was based on those two pillars.

Viisaus said...

"As to the ridiculous charges of idolatry constantly made against Catholics (especially around here), I again appeal to St. Augustine:"

Augustine was wrong about this, so simple as that. Back in his days, the cult of the saints had not yet gotten quite so outrageous as it did in centuries after his own times - Augustine for example protested that only foolish false Christians "worshipped pictures":

"75. Do not summon against me professors of the Christian name, who neither know nor give evidence of the power of their profession. Do not hunt up the numbers of ignorant people, who even in the true religion are superstitious, or are so given up to evil passions as to forget what they have promised to God. I know that there are many worshippers of tombs and pictures. I know that there are many who drink to great excess over the dead, and who, in the feasts which they make for corpses, bury themselves over the buried, and give to their gluttony and drunkenness the name of religion."

http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/1401.htm

We can see already here the direction that the cult of the saints was going to.

Augustine himself might have condemned the whole thing if he only could have seen in future what would be going on in the shrines of "Virgin of Guadalupe."

In any case, Augustine presented merely a sophistic ad hoc excuse and Reformers - having learned from history, being "sadder but wiser" than the Nicene-era writers - reasonably did to martyrs' cults what good king Hezekiah did to the bronze serpent Nehushtan.

TRUE saints would never want their own celebration or their "merits" detract from the glory of Christ. With John the Baptist, they acknowledge that "He must increase, but I must decrease" (John 3:30).

John Lollard said...

"As Ben M said, the influence of Jewish thought, moral and financial support of the Reformation is very well known to folks who take the time to study these things."

I don't remember denying these things. I simply stated, in typical Roman Catholic fashion, the Jews are blamed for something you find terrible, and you are now seeking to demonstrate that it is terrible because the Jews are involved.

scotju said...

Viisaus, playing the ad hominum card against WT Walsh (anti-Jewish, anti-Protestant crank) isn't going to prove yor arguement. It's refuting his information and facts that will carry the day for you. I kindly suggest that you read the following to edcate yorself on the Jewish inflence on Protestantism. 1. Newman's book. 2. When Scotland Was Jewish by Hirschman and Yates. (pay close attention to Chap 10) 3. The Melungeons: The Last Lost Tribe In America by Hirschman (pay close attention to the chapter on the Primitive and Regular Baptists) I do hope you have a good time reading!

Ben m said...

Viisaus,

This citation already tells me what an anti-Jewish, anti-Protestant crank W.T. Walsh was. A true pre-Vatican II, unreconstructed Romanist bigot.

Crank? Bigot? Let us see.

In his book Philip II, ch. 2, “The Childhood of Philip [1532],” p. 26, Walsh writes:

“In the famous Dominican monastery of St. Thomas one could see the resting place of Torquemada, and the right arm of Saint Thomas Aquinas, with that hand he had once used to startle an Emperor by pounding on a table. 13 In this Church was preserved also the consecrated Host, stolen, desecrated, and recovered, and still intact after forty years, of the celebrated La Guardia case.14”

The “La Guardia case” is a reference to the tragic “Holy Child of La Guardia” affair. The Jewish Encyclopedia gives its version of events here.

Walsh however, is of another opinion, which he briefly explains in note 14, referenced on pp. 728-729, in “Notes on Chapter II.”

The desecration of the Host and the case of the Holy Child of La Guardia are discussed at some length in my Isabella of Spain (Mcbride, New York, 1930; Sheed & Ward, London, 1931). Jewish critics resented my giving so much space to the subject, instead of dismissing is summarily as a judicial murder, as Lea and others have done. But as it seemed to me no more incredible that a few ignorant Jews should commit a horrible crime than that three Dominican priests and twelve learned Catholic gentlemen should conspire to send innocent men to a horrible death, I examined the evidence with great care, and when I found that Lea had been able to exonerate the accused only by changing an important date, I felt that readers were entitled to as much of the testimony as I had space for."

Ben m said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ben m said...

Viisaus,

This citation already tells me what an anti-Jewish, anti-Protestant crank W.T. Walsh was. A true pre-Vatican II, unreconstructed Romanist bigot.

Crank? Bigot? Let us see.

In his book Philip II, ch. 2, “The Childhood of Philip [1532],” p. 26, Walsh writes:

“In the famous Dominican monastery of St. Thomas one could see the resting place of Torquemada, and the right arm of Saint Thomas Aquinas, with that hand he had once used to startle an Emperor by pounding on a table. 13 In this Church was preserved also the consecrated Host, stolen, desecrated, and recovered, and still intact after forty years, of the celebrated La Guardia case.14”

The “La Guardia case” is a reference to the tragic “Holy Child of La Guardia” affair in The Jewish Encyclopedia gives its version of events here.

Walsh however, is of another opinion, which he briefly explains in note 14, referenced on pp. 728-729, in “Notes on Chapter II.”

The desecration of the Host and the case of the Holy Child of La Guardia are discussed at some length in my Isabella of Spain (Mcbride, New York, 1930; Sheed & Ward, London, 1931). Jewish critics resented my giving so much space to the subject, instead of dismissing is summarily as a judicial murder, as Lea and others have done."

Ben m said...

Continuing with Walsh (my emphasis):

“But as it seemed to me no more incredible that a few ignorant Jews should commit a horrible crime than that three Dominican priests and twelve learned Catholic gentlemen should conspire to send innocent men to a horrible death, I examined the evidence with great care, and when I found that Lea had been able to exonerate the accused only by changing an important date, I felt that readers were entitled to as much of the testimony as I had space for.

“My opinion then was, and still is, that the judges and both juries were convinced of the guilt of the accused. This opinion was not altered by the controversy I had on the subject with Dr. Cecil Roth, in the Dublin Review of October 1932. But I regret the harshness with which I replied to his strictures on my book (including the additional touch injected by the printer who made me say “he Roth” in stead of “Dr. Roth”); and I willingly make such amends as I can to that distinguished scholar for any brusqueness or lack of charity in my article.

"I regret, too, that I must still disagree with him on the main issue. My view of the matter is shared by the best Spanish historians: for example, Vicente de la Fuente (Las sociedades secretas); and Menéndez y Pelayo (Historia de España).

Ben m said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ben m said...

Continuing with Walsh (my emphasis):

“But as it seemed to me no more incredible that a few ignorant Jews should commit a horrible crime than that three Dominican priests and twelve learned Catholic gentlemen should conspire to send innocent men to a horrible death, I examined the evidence with great care, and when I found that Lea had been able to exonerate the accused only by changing an important date, I felt that readers were entitled to as much of the testimony as I had space for.

“My opinion then was, and still is, that the judges and both juries were convinced of the guilt of the accused. This opinion was not altered by the controversy I had on the subject with Dr. Cecil Roth, in the Dublin Review of October 1932. But I regret the harshness with which I replied to his strictures on my book (including the additional touch injected by the printer who made me say “he Roth” in stead of “Dr. Roth”); and I willingly make such amends as I can to that distinguished scholar for any brusqueness or lack of charity in my article."

Ben m said...

Continuing with Walsh (my emphasis):

“But as it seemed to me no more incredible that a few ignorant Jews should commit a horrible crime than that three Dominican priests and twelve learned Catholic gentlemen should conspire to send innocent men to a horrible death, I examined the evidence with great care, and when I found that Lea had been able to exonerate the accused only by changing an important date, I felt that readers were entitled to as much of the testimony as I had space for.


“My opinion then was, and still is, that the judges and both juries were convinced of the guilt of the accused. This opinion was not altered by the controversy I had on the subject with Dr. Cecil Roth, in the Dublin Review of October 1932. But I regret the harshness with which I replied to his strictures on my book (including the additional touch injected by the printer who made me say “he Roth” in stead of “Dr. Roth”); and I willingly make such amends as I can to that distinguished scholar for any brusqueness or lack of charity in my article.

Viisaus said...

Ben, how is all that stuff supposed to be connected to proving Walsh's claims about Jewish Marranos being behind the Reformation - or whatever it is you are trying to argue? So far you have mostly just been insinuating things.

“most of the heresiarchs and heretics of this present century have been of those people” - this claim here is rubbish (which you yet for some reason decided to cite for us). Let's see you scholarly corroborate that tall tale.


And scotju, even if you really were of Scottish-Jewish heritage, that does NOT actually make you an any sort of expert on the history of the Reformation - or even on Jewish participation in the Reformation. Sorry to spoil that romantic delusion of yours.

Truth Unites... and Divides said...

"This citation already tells me what an anti-Jewish, anti-Protestant crank W.T. Walsh was. A true pre-Vatican II, unreconstructed Romanist bigot."

Curious. What does "unreconstructed" mean? In the context of this sentence, I mean.

Ben m said...

Viisaus,

My other 2 posts regarding your saying Walsh was a bigot appeared and then disappeared! I'll try again:

Continuing with Walsh's words (my emphasis):

“But as it seemed to me no more incredible that a few ignorant Jews should commit a horrible crime than that three Dominican priests and twelve learned Catholic gentlemen should conspire to send innocent men to a horrible death, I examined the evidence with great care, and when I found that Lea had been able to exonerate the accused only by changing an important date, I felt that readers were entitled to as much of the testimony as I had space for.


“My opinion then was, and still is, that the judges and both juries were convinced of the guilt of the accused. This opinion was not altered by the controversy I had on the subject with Dr. Cecil Roth, in the Dublin Review of October 1932. But I regret the harshness with which I replied to his strictures on my book (including the additional touch injected by the printer who made me say “he Roth” in stead of “Dr. Roth”); and I willingly make such amends as I can to that distinguished scholar for any brusqueness or lack of charity in my article.

Ben m said...

test.

Ben m said...

Continuing with Walsh (my emphasis throughout):

“But as it seemed to me no more incredible that a few ignorant Jews should commit a horrible crime than that three Dominican priests and twelve learned Catholic gentlemen should conspire to send innocent men to a horrible death, I examined the evidence with great care, and when I found that Lea had been able to exonerate the accused only by changing an important date, I felt that readers were entitled to as much of the testimony as I had space for."

Ben m said...

Continuing with Walsh:

“My opinion then was, and still is, that the judges and both juries were convinced of the guilt of the accused. This opinion was not altered by the controversy I had on the subject with Dr. Cecil Roth, in the Dublin Review of October 1932. But I regret the harshness with which I replied to his strictures on my book (including the additional touch injected by the printer who made me say “he Roth” in stead of “Dr. Roth”); and I willingly make such amends as I can to that distinguished scholar for any brusqueness or lack of charity in my article."

Ben m said...

Continuing with Walsh (final):

"I regret, too, that I must still disagree with him on the main issue. My view of the matter is shared by the best Spanish historians: for example, Vicente de la Fuente (Las sociedades secretas); and Menéndez y Pelayo (Historia de España).

“In the present work I have relied upon Jewish sources as much as possible, where Jew are concerned, hoping that by bringing together Jewish and Christian accounts (which for some mysterious reasons have been kept in separate historical compartments, although the story is all one) I may in some way contribute to a better understanding among Jews, Protestants and Catholics, and in no way add to the hatred which afflicts the world.

"This hatred and its perpetuation derive partly from the falsification of history through the neglect or misinterpretation of source material.


Now, truthfully, Viisaus, does that sound like one who ought to be qualified as either a crank or a bigot?

zipper778 said...

As far as what I've read from you guys about the Jews and their involvement in the Reformation, it has NOTHING to do about the doctrines and the REAL reasons that the Reformation happened in the first place. Who cares if the Jews helped? God has moved unbelievers and eventually brought them to Christ. This is presented like it's the Reformation's dirty little secret, but to me it looks like people are trying to distract others from the real reasons that the Roman church is wrong in the first place.

Viisaus said...

Reading archives, I can see how "scotju" is fond of far-fetched conspiracy claptrap - on the basis of just one book, written by some second-rate Bulgarian scholar, he uncritically claimed that the English Reformation originated from Bogomilian Gnosticism:

http://beggarsallreformation.blogspot.com/2010/05/morning-star-of-reformation.html?showComment=1273854589227#c8213236935942504484