Monday, September 16, 2013

How a 16th Century Roman Apologist Understood the Mariology of the Reformers

Those of you familiar with basic Reformation history should know the name of Roman Catholic theologian and apologist, Johann Eck.  Johann Eck's 404 Theses, 1530 is an interesting look at how he understood the beliefs of the Reformers. Eck was perhaps the top Roman apologist of his day.

Here is a brief summary as to how Eck understood the Mariology of the Reformers. I present this because there are Roman apologists today that argue "the Reformers accepted almost every major Marian doctrine and considered these doctrines to be both scriptural and fundamental to the historic Christian Faith." Sometimes they'll go as far as saying the Mariology of the Reformers has been "covered up." Note below, Eck was certain the Reformers had a quite a different "Mariology" than what was the norm during the 16th Century.

Against Mary:

91] Christ said to Mary: "What have I to do with thee!" meaning: Because you are a woman you think that some special favor will be shown you by me on the ground of a merit of prerogative. Understand, however, that you have no more influence with me than the woman who was a sinner, or the Syrophenician (Melanchthon) .

92] Christ permitted Mary to err (Luther). And Joseph wanted to desert her under the suspicion of adultery (ib).

93] When Christ preached, the centurion had greater faith than Mary; for while Christ gave his mother great faith at the conception and nativity, afterwards it was not, or only rarely, so great, and meanwhile he permitted it to waver (Luther).

94] The contradictory of the statement that the Blessed Virgin was conceived without original sin has not been censured ( Luther.)

95] We certainly are just as holy as Mary (Luther). On this account, we are unwilling to have her as an advocate.

96] That on the day of the nativity of Mary we use the Epistle concerning the wisdom of God, and the Gospel concerning the nativity of Christ, is a falsehood and blasphemy ( Luther, the Nurembergers).

97] The "salve regina, " "regina cceli" are improper, and do a wrong to Christ, since they ascribe to a creature what belongs to God (Heathen; the Nurembergers; Luther).

98] Your prayer, says Luther, is just as precious as that of Mary, because you can aid me just as much as she.

99] Christ was unwilling to comply with the curiosity of Mary, when she asked for a miracle when the wine failed (Zwingli).

100] Claustra virginitatis Mariae in partu fuerunt aperta et dimota (Luther.)

101] I hate no festival more than that of the Conception of Mary, and that of Corpus Christi (Luther).

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