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Mary the “Queen Mother”?

I have heard some pretty interesting arguments defending the Marian Doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church. One argument for Mary being the Queen Mother comes from the OT hierarchy. This brand of interpretation is commonly known as typology. Someone in the OT resembles or is a “type” of a NT figure. Typology has been used in interesting ways and this video highlights that wonderfully:

Listen to Mr. Joseph’s first typological interpretation starting at the 30 second mark to the 1:50 minute mark. The specific passage that he reads is 1 Kings 2: 19-20 which says:

So Bathsheba went to King Solomon to speak to him on behalf of Adonijah. And the king rose to meet her and bowed down to her. Then he sat on his throne and had a seat brought for the king’s mother, and she sat on his right. 

Then she said, “I have one small request to make of you; do not refuse me.” And the king said to her, “Make your request, my mother, for I will not refuse you.”

So, Mr. Joseph says that this passage speaks to Mary’s relationship with her son, Jesus. If that is the case then there are a few items that need to be discussed.

First, Mary is said to be next to Jesus constantly interceding on behalf of those who pray to her. But, we have a problem. The “queen mother” in this passage needs a seat brought for her. The concept of queenly intercession  was not a consistent role in the OT. If it were a seat would always be next to the king reserved for his mother. So, apparently the typological interpretation can suggest that Mary has access to Jesus like the mother of Solomon did. However, they ignore the glaring contradiction. Roman Apologists say, “Mary is like the queen mothers of the OT by having access to the king for eternity.” Yet, the Bible says that a seat needed to be brought in for Solomon’s mother. Which implies that the seat was not permanent but limited.

Now start the video from the 1:48 minute mark and play it to the 2:10 mark. This is where Mr. Joseph applies this OT passage to Mary’s queenly motherhood. He says that Jesus seats Mary on his right hand and says, “Make your request my mother for I will not refuse you anything.”

Here is where this typological interpretation fails. According to this argument, Jesus listens to Mary and will grant every request that she makes because he loves his mother. This “type” is said to be  found in the OT concept of “queen mothers”. However, in 1 Kings 2 something really interesting happens. Bathsheba, the “queen mother” and type of Mary, doesn’t get her request granted by King Solomon! Instead, this happens:

She said, “Let Abishag the Shunammite be given to Adonijah your brother as his wife.” King Solomon answered his mother, “And why do you ask Abishag the Shunammite for Adonijah? Ask for him the kingdom also, for he is my older brother, and on his side are Abiatharthe priest and Joab the son of Zeruiah.” Then King Solomon swore by the LORD, saying, “God do so to me and more also if this word does not cost Adonijah his life!Now therefore as the LORD lives, who has established me and placed me on the throne of David my father, and who has made me a house, as he promised, Adonijah shall be put to death today.” So King Solomon sent Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and he struck him down, and he died.

Not only does Bathsheba not get her request granted but she gets Adonijah killed. Mr. Joseph does mention that Bathsheba’s  request doesn’t get granted but he gives us no explanation about why this shouldn’t be included in his typological interpretation. He says that Bathsheba was being deceived so King Solomon didn’t fulfill her request. If Bathsheba was deceived does that mean Mary can be deceived? If not why not? Also, the OT speaks of a few king’s mothers and guess how many times the “queen mother” gets her request granted…If you said 0 then you would be correct! If it is so important and clear that people should pray to Mary for her intercession before Christ then why put forth this kind of argument for her queenly motherhood?

Not only does this passage impune Mary but it impunes the character of Jesus. If in fact Bathsheba represents Mary then King Solomon represents Jesus. The story begins with King Solomon saying that he wont refuse his mothers request. Mr. Joseph echoes this point with, what he believes, Jesus says to his mother. In the story we see that King Solomon doesn’t grant his mother’s request and thus becomes a liar. If we use the same typological interpretation Mr. Joseph did for Mary’s “queenly motherhood” then we could say that Jesus is a liar because he tells his mother, “I will grant whatever you ask,” yet, he may not do so.

The Marian Doctrines cannot be substantiated from Scripture and this is just another example of how far Rome needs to stretch Scripture to fit her human traditions.

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About Travis Berry

I am a blatantly honest person who loves to think, read, discuss, and write about God and theology. I have a bachelor's degree in Youth Ministry from Crown College. I work at a church in Houston, TX as a Youth Director and love every minute of it! I am married to a wonderful woman named Becky and we have one amazing child! I have a love for God's Word, and a fervor to live it out in the fullest, and I pray this blog reflects that. Thanks for checking out AnotherChristianBlog!.

Posted on December 28, 2011, in Christianity. Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

    • I like Barron’s analogy of umpires. Umpires make calls within the game. They call balls and strikes. They determine fair and foul. However, Barron doesn’t take this analogy far enough. What are umpires bound to? The written rules of the game. They cannot stray from the rules of the game. The rules are the rules. If a hitter’s batted ball gets caught he is out. The umpires do not have the power to change the rules. This is the same for anyone that is a follower of Christ.

      We, as Christians, are bound to Scripture. We are not allowed to stray from what is written. The same should go with the Roman Catholic Church but it doesn’t.

      Also when we talk about authority there is no benefit to simply moving it from the Bible to the “Church”. Many Catholics, such as Barron, suggest that there are 30,000 protestant denominations. I would appreciate the reference to this number. If Barron is using the World Christian Encyclopedia , as many Catholics do, then he has a problem. He has a problem because that same source says in the year 2000 there was 242 “Roman Catholic” denominations.

      Beyond that, why in the world do Catholics keep bringing this point up? How many liberal professors are in Catholic colleges? I can’t tell you how many Catholics I meet that have differing opinions of many topics. So, where is the unity that Barron is saying we must have? Rome cannot give you that. They can only pretend to do so.

      We have two choices.

      #1 We follow an authority that is self proclaimed to be followed (Roman Catholic Church)

      #2 We follow an authority that God defines as “God-breathed”. (Sola Scriptura)

      Thanks for reading,

      Travis

  1. Sola Scriptura?

    Where in scripture does it state Sola Scriptura? historically the Bible that is proclaimed by most churches today to be the infallible word of God was compiled in the 4th to 5th centuries by the Catholic Church and its canon closed by a Pope. We have the Catholic Church today to thank for our Bible, and ironically when you promote the infallible nature of scripture, then you are promoting the Catholic Church that compiled and guarunteed the Bible. So you argue against Catholic authority in one breath, then promote their authority to assure our Bible is infallible in teaching in another.

    Here is another point to think about, the New Testament was not written till years after the passion, death and resurrection of Christ. So, Chirst didn’t have the New Testament in His hand when He taught, he only had the teachings of the Old Testament. So, it wasn’t Christ’s hand that physically wrote the New Testament, it was His apostles, years after the events of their testemonies were done. And since writing was such an expensive thing to do (one book costed an average of a 3 year salary,) and there were few people that knew how to read and wirte, then most people had to depend on oral tradition to learn from, not a Bible. The apostles didn’t teach from a New Testament, they lived it. We really don’t even see Bible’s as common items until the printing press comes about over a thousand years.

    So, we have the apostles word written that the events described is what happened, we have literally hundreds of fake stories coming out in the 3rd and 4th centuries all claiming divine inspiration, and we have one Church started by Christ that comes together and declares the books selected that are in our Bible today forming the New Testament are the true divine teachings. Since Matthew makes it clear that there is one church started by Christ that the gates of Hell cannot prevail against, and since there was only one Christian church that existed in the early centuries after Christ, then we have to accept that it was Christ’s Church that declared the Bible as we know it today as infallible, and it is also this Church that cannot be defeated by the gates of hell that must still be standing today.

    Since the Catholic Church is the only church today that has a logical claim through Apostolic Succession back to the time of Chirst, then we have to accept that this is the same church that gave us the Bible, and if they have the authority to guaruntee scripture, then thsi is the Church we as Christians should be looking to, because they are the only ones out there that have to authority from Christ Himself(Matthew 16 and Matthew 19) to practice authority in His name.

    • Thanks for the comment Van,

      Allow me to respond to some of your points.

      You said: “Where in scripture does it state Sola Scriptura?”

      Me: Well, you wont find the the word sola scritpura. However, we do clearly see the principle in Scripture. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 says:

      All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.

      Is it a good work to teach the marian doctrines, infallibility of the pope, indulgences? All of these things are taught by the Roman Catholic church yet they are not found in Scripture. Yet, the Scriptures say that the Scriptures are the source for equipping the man of God for every good work.

      You: “historically the Bible that is proclaimed by most churches today to be the infallible word of God was compiled in the 4th to 5th centuries by the Catholic Church and its canon closed by a Pope.”

      Me: Where to start? First, the 4th to 5th century? The canon was not officially defined until the Council of Trent in 1546. Popes and bishops all had different lists all throughout history. So, to say that the Catholic church is the one that defined these things is misleading. Also, it is totally false to say that the canon was compiled in the 4th and 5th century. 1546 is the 16th century.

      You: “The apostles didn’t teach from a New Testament, they lived it. We really don’t even see Bible’s as common items until the printing press comes about over a thousand years.”

      Me: There are over 5,000 Greek manuscripts that we have. How can you say “we really don’t even see Bible’s as common items”?

      You: “So, we have the apostles word written that the events described is what happened, we have literally hundreds of fake stories coming out in the 3rd and 4th centuries all claiming divine inspiration, and we have one Church started by Christ that comes together and declares the books selected that are in our Bible today forming the New Testament are the true divine teachings.”

      Me: So, there were many different stories coming out of the 3rd and 4th centuries and the Roman Catholic church waited to officially respond to these claims for 12 centuries? Wow.

      You: “Since the Catholic Church is the only church today that has a logical claim through Apostolic Succession back to the time of Chirst”

      Me: This is a common claim by Catholics but it is completely without proof. The early Christians show no signs of believing what medern Roman Catholics are supposed to believe today. The marian doctrines and papal infallibility are just a couple of examples.

      You: “then we have to accept that this is the same church that gave us the Bible, and if they have the authority to guaruntee scripture,”

      Me: The Roman Catholic church “gave us the Bible”? I thought God did that. They guarantee Scripture? I thought God did that.

      The problem with your claim is that you misunderstand what is meant by discerning what the canon is. Christians didn’t “give” us Scripture. They only recognized its authority. There is an essential difference between the two.

      Thanks for reading,

      Travis

  2. Unfortunately Travis, I cannot agree with your points. 1546 is the year that the Protestant reformation occurred, not the year the Bible was compiled. Besides, if it was compiled in 1546, then does this mean there was no Bible before the 16th century? Interesting. If it took this long to get a bible together, then how would sola scriptura hold water for the first 16 centuries after Christ? The closed canon of the Bible had been around since the fourth century, I’ve done the research. Apostolic Succession is completely without claim? We are actually able to trace the Pope all the way back to Peter through historically accurate documentation. Again, I’ve spent the time and have done this myself.

    You say that the Bible came from God, does this mean that the first Bible fell from the sky scripted by God’s hands? We do believe that it is divine inspiration that grants the infallibility of scripture, but it was fallible men that penned the book. this is why a divinely inspired church had to close the canon of scripture, so there would be no debate on what is truth. This is also why an authoritative body is needed. Even the Bible can be manipulated by people that want to promote personal agenda.

    The doctrines you mention, and claim to be non scriptural are actually in scripture and the traditions of the Church. This can be found in the writings of the Early Church Fathers from the first second and third centuries.

    I understand that you dislike the Catholic Church and want to disprove it, but to a knowledgeable Catholic, this cannot be done. Lets face it, you are trying to do something that people have tried to do for centuries and have failed to do. You are even using the same arguments that they have used for all this time, yet the Catholic Church is just as strong today, and not going anywhere. I recommend that if you really wanna argue Catholicism with a devout catholic, then actually learn the accurate history of our faith, and study the true doctrines of the Church, not the false propaganda that was made up over time.

    • Van,

      That is exactly my point. The Roman Catholic church didn’t identify the canon until the Council of Trent in 1546. This is a fact.

      The real question is if the Bible was identified and definite why did Pope Gregory the Great edit out Maccabees? Allow me to give you a reference:

      With reference to which particular we are not acting irregularly, if from the books, though not Canonical, yet brought out for the edification of the Church, we bring forward testimony. Thus Eleazar in the battle smote and brought down an elephant, but fell under the very beast that he killed (1 Macc. 6.46). -Library of the Fathers of the Holy Catholic Church, (Oxford: Parker, 1845), Gregory the Great, Morals on the Book of Job, Volume II, Parts III and IV, Book XIX.34, p.424.

      Notice what the pope says about Maccabees. It is not Canonical. So, your assertion that it was defined in the 4th and 5th century is false. This also proves that papal infallibility is false but that is another topic.

      What I would really like you to do it give me a resource that gives the names of every pope all the way to Peter. That would be great.

      You also said that the marian doctrines and papal infallibility are written about in the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd centuries. Can you give me those references?

      I would encourage you to turn from the Catholic church and embrace the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He is the only name that can save. Mary nor the saints can intercede for you because there is only one mediatior between God and man. And he is Jesus Christ. I pray that God reaches down and regenerates you to see the amazing truth that is found within the pages of Scripture instead of the false teaching of the Catholic church.

      Thanks in advance for responding,

      Travis

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