In an earlier article, we saw five theological proofs from the Bible, all from the Old Testament and biblical books accepted by Protestants, of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Mother of God. Here, we continue our prayerful studies in Revelation, both from other Old Testament Books and also from the New Testament.
Theological Proof VI. Proof from the Gospel of St. Luke. From the angelic salutation. From the “gratia plena.” Proof from the angel’s supreme veneration of Mary. Proof from the Holy Spirit falling at Mary’s greeting. Proof from John the Baptist leaping in the womb. Proof from the Holy Spirit through St. Elizabeth highly praising Mary, being glad at her visitation. Proof from the amazingly fulfilled prophecy of the Queen of Prophets!
The Ave Maria signifies that Mary is the New Eve, the antithesis of Eva, the undoer of her disobedience. It also shows the highest reverence the angels have for their Queen.
In the Old Testament, Abraham, Lot, Tobias, and his son Tobias highly venerated the angels who appeared to them. Here, the angel highly venerates Mary, saying, “Hail,” as one would say, “Hail, Caesar” — or, as was later said, “Hail, King of the Jews” (Mk. 15:18).
Luke 1:28: “And the angel being come in, said unto her: Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.” In Latin, “full of grace” is gratia plena. Jesus Christ, the sinless Lamb of God, immaculate by His nature, is also called “full of grace” (plenum gratiae) in Jn. 1:14.
In Greek, “full of grace” is kecharitomene. Greek scholars tell us how this word can be translated: “It is permissible, on Greek grammatical and linguistic grounds, to paraphrase kecharitomene as completely, perfectly, enduringly endowed with grace” (Blass and DeBrunner, Greek Grammar of the New Testament). In other words, the angel salutes the Blessed Mother as full of grace — completely, perfectly endowed with grace.
What follows? That Jesus Christ has “divinized” (what is called theosis) His Mother, by giving Her all His gifts of grace. But Jesus Christ has the grace of being immaculate. Hence, Mary too must have had that grace; otherwise, Mary would not be full of grace. If Mary is full of grace, she is immaculate. Else Christ, being full of grace, would not be immaculate.
St. Elizabeth, filled with the Holy Spirit at Mary’s greeting, marveled that the Mother of God came to visit her. John the Baptist was sanctified in the womb when Mother Mary spoke. He leaped for joy in her presence, bringing to mind David before the Ark of the Covenant in 2 Samuel. The Ark was brought, it remained for three months, and it brought the Lord God’s Blessings.
And David was afraid of the Lord that day, saying: How shall the ark of the Lord come to me? And he would not have the ark of the Lord brought in to himself into the city of David: but he caused it to be carried into the house of Obededom the Gethite. And the ark of the Lord abode in the house of Obededom the Gethite three months: and the Lord blessed Obededom, and all his household. And it was told king David, that the Lord had blessed Obededom, and all that he had, because of the ark of God.
Here we see that honoring Mary, the Ark of God, brings blessings wherever she goes. The ancient promise of God to His saints, “I will bless them that bless thee, and curse them that curse thee” (Gen. 12:3), applies pre-eminently to Mary, Queen of Saints. Again in Tobias 13, this prophecy is reiterated, using the figure of the mystical City of God:
They shall be cursed that shall despise thee: and they shall be condemned that shall blaspheme thee: and blessed shall they be that shall build thee up. But thou shalt rejoice in thy children, because they shall all be blessed, and shall be gathered together to the Lord. Blessed are all they that love thee, and that rejoice in thy peace.
Let these biblical examples of how saints and angels have treated Mary set the example for us as well!
Further confirmation: It is a biblical commandment to honor one’s mother, as we read in Ex. 20:12, cited in Eph 6:2–3, and Mary is our Mother (Jn. 19:27). St. John signifies the perfect disciple of Christ, the one closest to His Sacred Heart, who loves God’s Mother as his very own. Do you desire such divine intimacy with the Savior? Then, O Evangelical Christian, love Mary as your own dearest Mother, too!
VII. The seat of wisdom, whose fruit is pure gold, the mystical Mother of divine grace whom the Jews called Shekinah, bride of God’s Spirit, appears again and again in the Wisdom books — in Proverbs, in Sirach, in the Song of Songs, and in the book dedicated to Wisdom itself!
(i) Prov. 8:17–20:
I love them that love me: and they that in the morning early watch for me, shall find me. With me are riches and glory, glorious riches and justice. For my fruit is better than gold and the precious stone, and my blossoms than choice silver. I walk in the way of justice, in the midst of the paths of judgment, That I may enrich them that love me, and may fill their treasures.
Here, personified Wisdom speaks to us as the Mother of Grace, whose fruit is fairer than gold! Since the fruit is Christ, the fruit of Mary’s immaculate womb, as St. Elizabeth, inspired by the Holy Ghost, would joyfully confess centuries later, it is evident that the woman is Mary. Lady Wisdom continues to speak to us through the lips of the prophets throughout all the Wisdom books!
A further confirmation in Sirach 24. The Lord makes His tabernacle in Holy Wisdom; she is to be praised in the churches of the Most High. Among the blessed, she is the blessed.
(ii) Sir. 24:
Wisdom shall praise her own self, and shall be honoured in God, and shall glory in the midst of her people, And shall open her mouth in the churches of the most High, and shall glorify herself in the sight of his power, And in the midst of her own people she shall be exalted, and shall be admired in the holy assembly. And in the multitude of the elect she shall have praise, and among the blessed she shall be blessed, saying: I came out of the mouth of the most High, the firstborn before all creatures: … Then the creator of all things commanded, and said to me: and he that made me, rested in my tabernacle, And he said to me: Let thy dwelling be in Jacob, and thy inheritance in Israel, and take root in my elect. From the beginning, and before the world, was I created, and unto the world to come I shall not cease to be, and in the holy dwelling place I have ministered before him. And so was I established in Sion, and in the holy city likewise I rested, and my power was in Jerusalem … I am the mother of fair love, and of fear, and of knowledge, and of holy hope. In me is all grace of the way and of the truth, in me is all hope of life and of virtue. Come over to me, all ye that desire me, and be filled with my fruits.
Here, in these amazing verses, we learn of the Mother of grace! Just as the Jewish people expected a Messiah to come, they expected also His Mother, Mother of grace.
That is the deep meaning of the “full of grace”: Mary is the Mother of God, full of His grace. Mary is therefore always to be praised; by the will of her Son, she is grace! She is the Mother of love, of fear, of holy hope. All grace of the Way, the Truth and the Life — i.e., of Christ — is in her. She is Mother and mediatrix of all the graces of His Spirit, as His true spouse. She lived only to do His will, therefore she was ever full of grace, and always grew in it. That is why the Bible tells us to praise her, to honour her in God, etc., as above.
(iii) Wisdom in Wisdom 8: the Lord of all loved the lady who is Mother of wisdom. He made His tabernacle in her. Who is she? The Immaculata!
God tells us how He loved and pursued Lady Wisdom. She is the true bride of His Holy Spirit. The Lord of all sought to have her for the spouse of His Spirit, as we see here.
She reacheth, therefore, from end to end mightily, and ordereth all things sweetly. Her have I loved, and have sought her out from my youth, and have desired to take for my spouse, and I became a lover of her beauty. She glorifieth her nobility by being conversant with God: yea, and the Lord of all things hath loved her.
VIII. The beloved bride whom the Holy Ghost calls, “O My Love” is altogether without stain, immaculate. Mary is a figure of the Church. She already represents in her own person what the whole Church will be on the last day.
Canticle 4:7: “Thou art all fair, O my love(!), and there is not a spot in thee.” The English word immaculata comes from the Latin for this verse. “Macula” means stain. Macula non est in Te, the Holy Ghost sings to His bride; in other words, the Holy Ghost declares to us that Mary is immaculate. (The verse in Latin is, from the Vulgate 4:7, Tota pulchra es, amica mea, et macula non est in te.)
IX: The Ark of the Covenant is astonishingly seen in Heaven. She is the woman crowned with twelve stars. She is the Mother of the Church, the daughter of Israel, the all-immaculate Virgin Mary.
Rev 11:19 “And the temple of God was opened in heaven: and the ark of his testament was seen in his temple[.]” So the Ark of God was assumed into Heaven, as the Church teaches! This Ark, as we have seen above, of pure gold, stainless and immaculate to contain the stainless and immaculate Lord of Glory, is none other than the immaculate Virgin Mary.
Chapter and verses were added to the Bible by the Catholic Church later, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Apoc. 11:19 and 12:1 go together; they speak of the woman crowned with twelve stars in Heaven, who is clothed so gloriously, above all the saints and angels, that she must have led an immaculate life of the greatest sinless perfection possible.
And a great sign appeared in heaven: A woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars: … And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with an iron rod: and her son was taken up to God, and to his throne … And the dragon was angry against the woman: and went to make war with the rest of her seed, who keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.
Look how manifest it is that Mary is crowned in Heaven, more glorious than the sun, the moon, and the stars. (1) The woman here is the Mother of Jesus, and Mary is the Mother of Jesus. (2) The woman here is the Mother of Christians, and Jesus gave Mary to be Mother of St. John at the Cross, and of His perfect disciples. (3) The woman here is the same woman as in Gen. 3:15. (4) The woman here gave birth both to Jesus and to us, her spiritual children, while remaining ever a virgin, for that is why it is said we are her seed, therefore she is a virgin mother. But only one woman in history ever has been and always will be a virgin mother — namely, the Virgin Mary. Therefore, she is the Queen Mother of the twelve tribes of Israel, Queen of the twelve apostles of the Church, the Blessed Virgin Mary. Like the Gebirah in Israel, it is clear that her petition is always heard.
She signifies Israel, because She is the virgin daughter of Israel that Isaiah, Jeremiah, and the prophets speak of. She also typifies the Church, as St. Ambrose, St. Clement, St. Ephrem, and the Fathers say, because she is in her own person what the Church will one day be.
St. John the Apostle showed us that the model disciple receives Mother Mary as his own personal dearest Mother, just as he receives Jesus Christ as his own personal Lord and Savior. Here, the apostle teaches us that all who have God for their Father must have Mary for their Mother, for she is the true Mother of all God’s children, and we are her spiritual seed, whom she conceives as still a virgin.
Great Saints like St. Cyprian and St. Montfort say that those who do not have Mary and the Church for their Mother do not have God for their Father [III] [IV].
X: The bride of God is a woman in Heaven, who with her spouse the Holy Spirit speaks to us in Apoc. 22. She is a type of the Church, as the Church Fathers say, and is immaculate Mary.
Is there further evidence that there is a woman assumed into Heaven, who received her coronation there? Yes: She is not only Mother of God the Son and daughter of God the Father, but also, as we have seen with ample citations from both Testaments, the true beloved bride of the Holy Ghost. The Holy Ghost calls her “My Love”, and He deigns to allow her to speak to us in the last chapter of the Holy Bible. It is written, “The Spirit and the Bride say, ‘Come’” (Apoc. 22:17). From the fact that the Holy Spirit speaks, many Protestants themselves, against J.W.s and other Protestants, prove correctly that the Holy Ghost is a person. Hence, by the same standard, the bride of the Holy Spirit is a person.
Who is she? None other than Mary Immaculate, bride without stain, living image of Mother Church. Whoever is truly devoted to her will be saved.
Footnotes, references, links, and further reading
[III] St. Cyprian of Carthage, “On the Unity of the Church,” Chapter 6: “She knows one home, with chaste modesty she guards the sanctity of one couch. She keeps us for God; she assigns the children whom she has created to the kingdom. Whoever is separated from the Church and is joined with an adulteress is separated from the promises of the Church, nor will he who has abandoned the Church arrive at the rewards of Christ. He is a stranger; he is profane; he is an enemy. He cannot have God as a father who does not have the Church as a mother.”
[IV] St. Louis Marie de Montfort, “The secret of Mary,” Part 1, Doctrine of the Holy Slavery, para 11: “As in the order of nature a child must have a father and a mother, so likewise in the order of grace, a true child of the Church must have God for his Father and Mary for his Mother; and if anyone should glory in having God for his Father and yet has not the love of a true child for Mary, he is a deceiver, and the only father he has is the devil.”
Nishant Xavier lives in Chennai, India. He has an MBA in Financial Management and works in investment banking in Credit Suisse. He earlier worked at Bank of New York in its Chennai office. He makes time to preach the Gospel. His Passion is to preach to 100 Crore Souls before he dies. He is the Author of the upcoming Book: The Great Commission of Lord Jesus Christ: Distributing 150 Crore Bibles in India by 2033. For any important concern, send him a mail at [email protected] or connect with him on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn and YouTube.