PERHAPS THE MOST outstanding proof that Mary
worship developed out of the old worship of the sun worship mother
goddess may be seen from the fact that in sun worship
religion, the mother was worshiped as much (or more)
than her son! This provides an outstanding clue to
help us solve the mystery of sun worship today!
teaches that the Lord Jesus-and HE alone-is the way, the truth, and the life; that only HE can forgive sin;
that only HE,
of all earth's creatures, has ever lived a life that was
never stained with sin; and HE is to be worshiped not, his
mother. But Roman Catholicism--showing the
influence that sun
worship has had in its development--in many
ways exalts the mother also.
One can travel the world over, and whether in a
massive cathedral or in a village chapel, the statue of Mary
will occupy a prominent position. In reciting the Rosary,
the Hail Mary is repeated nine times as often as the Lord's
Prayer. Catholics are taught that by praying to Mary, she
can take the petition to her son, Jesus; and since she is his
mother, he will answer the request for her sake. The inference
is that Mary is more compassionate, understanding, and merciful
than her son Jesus. Certainly this is contrary to the
scriptures! Yet this idea has often been repeated in
noted Roman Catholic writer, Alphonsus Llguori, wrote at length
telling how much more effectual prayers are that are addressed to
Mary rather than to Christ. (Liguori, incidentally, was
canonized,as a "saint" by Pope Gregory XIV.) In 1839 and was
declared a "doctor" of the Catholic church by Pope Pius
IX.) In one portion of his writings, he described an
imaginary scene in which a sinful man saw two ladders hanging from
heaven. Mary was at the top of one: Jesus at the top of the
other. When the sinner tried to climb the one ladder, he saw
the angry face of Christ and fell defeated. But when he
climbed Mary's ladder, he ascended easily and was openly welcomed
by Mary who brought him into heaven and presented him to
Christ! Then all was well. The story was supposed to
show how much easier and more effective it is to go to Christ
The same writer said that the
sinner who ventures to come directly to Christ may come with dread
of his wrath. But if he will pray to the Virgin, she will
only have to "show" that son "the breasts that gave him suck" and
his wrath will be immediately appeased! Such reasoning
is in direct conflict with a scriptural example: "Blessed is the
womb that bare thee,-- a woman said to Jesus, "and the paps that
thou has sucked!" But Jesus answered, Yea, rather blessed
are they that hear the word of God and keep it" (Luke. 11,27,28).
Such ideas about the breasts, on
the other hand, were not foreign to the worshipers of the sun worship mother
goddess. Images of her have been unearthed which often show
her breasts extremely out of proportion to her body. In the
case of Diana, to symbolize her fertility, she is pictured with as
many as one hundred breasts!
attempts to exalt Mary to a glorified position within Catholicism
may be seen in the doctrine of the "immaculate conception" of
Mary. This doctrine was pronounced and defined by Plus IX in 1854
that the Blessed Virgin Mary "in the first instant of her
conception...was preserved exempt from all stain of original
sin." It would appear that this teaching is only a further
effort to make Mary more closely resemble the goddess of sun
worship, for in
the old myths, the goddess was also believed to have had
a supernatural conception! The stories varied, but all told
of supernatural happenings in connection with her entrance into
the world, that she was superior to ordinary mortals, that she was
divine. Little by little, so that the teachings about Mary
would not appear inferior to those of the mother goddess, it was
necessary to teach that Mary's entrance into this world involved a
supernatural element also!
doctrine that Mary was born without the stain of original sin
scriptural? We will answer this in the words of the Catholic
Encyclopedia, itself: "No direct or categorical and stringent
proof of the dogma can be brought forward from scripture."
It is pointed out, rather, that these ideas were a gradual
development within the church.
Right here a basic
difference--perhaps the basic difference--between the Roman
Catholic approach to Christianity and the general Protestant view
should be explained. Roman Catholic doctrine has been based
partly on scripture,
partly on traditions and ideas handed down by church
fathers, and partly on beliefs borrowed from sun worship if these beliefs
could be "Christianized." Concepts from all of these sources
have been mixed
together, developed, finally to be made dogmas at various Catholic
councils over the centuries. But the view that the
Protestant Reformation sought to revive was a return to the actual scriptures as a more
sound basis for doctrine, with little or no emphasis on ideas that developed
Going right to
the scriptures, not only is any proof for the idea of the
immaculate conception of Mary lacking, there is evidence to the
contrary. While she was a chosen vessel of the Lord, was a godly
and virtuous woman--a virgin--she was as much a human as any other
member of Adam's family. "All have sinned and come short of
the glory of God" (Rom. 3:23), the only exception being Jesus
Christ himself. Like everyone else, Mary needed a savior and
plainly admitted this when she said: "And my spirit hath rejoiced
in God my SAVIOR" (Luke. 1:47).
If Mary needed
a savior, she was not a savior herself. If she needed a
savior, then she also needed to be saved, forgiven, and
redeemed. The fact is, our Lord's divinity did not depend on
his mother being a divine person. He was divine because he
was the only begotten son of God! His divinity came from his
The idea that
Mary was superior to other human beings was not the teaching of
Jesus. Once someone mentioned his mother and brethren. Jesus
asked, "Who is my mother? and who are my brethren?" Then,
stretching forth his hand toward his disciples, said, "Behold my
mother and my brethren! For whosoever shall do the will of
my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister,
and MOTHER" (Matt. 12:46-50). Plainly, anyone who does the will of
God is, in a definite sense, on the same level with Mary!
Catholics the world over recite the Hail Mary and other prayers
addressed to Mary. Multiplying the number of these prayers,
times the number of Catholics who recite them, someone has
estimated that Mary would have to listen to 46 ,296 petitions a
second! Obviously no one but God himself could do this.
Nevertheless, Catholics believe that Mary hears all of these
prayers; and so, of necessity, they have to exalt her to the
divine level--scriptural or not!
justify this exaltation, some have quoted the words of Gabriel to
Mary, "Blessed art thou among women" (Luke. 1 : 28) But Mary being
"blessed among women" cannot make her a divine person, for many
centuries before this, a similar blessing was pronounced upon
Jael, of whom it was said: "Blessed above women shall Jael the
wife of Heber the Kenite be..." (Judges 5:24).
Before Pentecost, Mary gathered with
the other disciples waiting for the promise of the Holy
Spirit. We read that the apostles "all continued with one
accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the
mother of Jesus, and his brethren" (Acts 1:14). Typical of
Catholic ideas concerning Mary, the picture to the right attempts
to give to Mary a central position. But the disciples were
not looking to Mary on that occasion. They were looking to
their resurrected and ascended CHRIST to out-pour on them the gift
of the Holy Spirit. In the drawing, the Holy Spirit (as a
dove) is hovering over Mary! Yet, as far as the scriptural
account is concerned, the only one upon whom the Spirit as a dove
descended was Jesus himself--not his mother! On the other
hand, the sun worship virgin
goddess under the name of Juno was often represented with a dove
on her head, as was also Astarte, Cybele, and Isis!
attempts to glorify Mary may be seen in the Roman Catholic
doctrine of the perpetual virginity. This is the teaching
that Mary remained a virgin throughout her life. But as
Encyclopedia Britannica explains, the doctrine of the perpetual
virginity of Mary was not taught until about three hundred years
after the ascension of Christ. It was not until the Council
of Chalcedon in 451 that this fabulous quality gained the official
recognition of Rome.
the scriptures, the birth of Jesus was the result of a
supernatural conception (Matt. 1:23), without an earthly
father. But after Jesus was born, Mary gave birth to other
children-the natural offspring of her union with Joseph, her
husband. The Bible says Jesus was Mary's "firstborn" son (Matt.
1:25); it does not say he was her only child. Being her
firstborn could certainly infer that later she had a second-born
child, possibly a third-born child, etc. That such was the
case seems apparent, for the names of four brothers are mentioned:
James, Jose, Simon, and Judas (Matt. 13:55).
also mentioned. The people of Nazareth said: "and his
sisters, are they not all with us?"(verse 56). The word
"sisters" is plural, of course, so we know that Jesus had at least
two sisters and probably more, for this verse speaks of "all" his
sisters. Usually if we are referring to only two people, we would
say 'both" of them, not "all" of them. The implication is
that at least three sisters are referred to. If we figure
three sisters and four brothers, half-brothers and half-sisters of
Jesus, this would make Mary the mother of eight children.
The scriptures say: "Joseph...knew her not till she had brought
forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS" (Matt.
1:25). Joseph "knew her not" until after Jesus was born, but after
that, Mary and Joseph did come together as husband and wife and
children were born to them. The idea that Joseph kept Mary
as a virgin all of her life is clearly un-scriptural.
times of the falling away, as though to more closely identify Mary
with the mother goddess, some taught that Mary's body never saw
corruption, that she bodily ascended into heaven, and is now the
queen of heaven. It was not until this present century,
however, that the "assumption"
of Mary was officially proclaimed as a doctrine of the Roman
Catholic church. It was in 1951 that Pope Pius XII
proclaimed that Mary's body saw no corruption, but was taken to
The words of St. Bernard sum up the
Roman Catholic postilion: "On the third day after Mary's death,
when the apostles gathered around her tomb, they found it empty.
The sacred body had been carried up to the Celestial Paradise .
..the grave had no power over one who was immaculate.,..But it was
not enough that Mary should be received into heaven...she had a
dignity beyond the reach even of the highest of the
archangels. Mary was to be crowned Queen of Heaven by the
eternal Father: she was to have a throne at her Son's right
hand....Now day by day, hour by hour, she is praying for us,
obtaining graces for us, preserving us from danger, shielding us
from temptation, showering down blessings upon us.
All of these
ideas about Mary are linked with the belief that she bodily
ascended into heaven. But the Bible says absolutely nothing
about the assumption of Mary. To the contrary, John 3:13
says: "No man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down
from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven"--Jesus Christ
himself. HE is the
one that is at God's right hand, HE
is the one that is our mediator, HE
is the one that showers down blessings upon us-not his mother!
connected with the idea of praying to Mary is an instrument called
the rosary. It consists of a chain with fifteen sets of
small beads, each set marked off by one large bead. The ends
of this chain are Joined by a medal bearing the imprint of Mary.
From this hangs a short chain at the end of which is a
crucifix. The beads on the rosary are for counting
prayers--prayers that are repeated over and over. Though this instrument is
widely used within the Roman Catholic church, it is clearly not
of Christian origin. It has been known in many
Encyclopedia says, "In almost all countries, then, we meet with
something in the nature of prayer counters or
rosary-beads." It goes on to cite a number of
examples, including a sculpture of ancient Nineveh, mentioned by
Layard, of two winged females praying before a sacred tree, each
holding a rosary. For
centuries, among the Mohammedans, a bead-string consisting of 33,
66, or 99 beads has been used for counting the names of
Allah. Marco Polo, in the thirteenth century, was surprised
to find the king of Malabar using a rosary of precious stones to count his
prayers. St, Francis Xavier and his companions were equally
astonished to see that
rosaries were universally familiar to the Buddhists of Japan.
Phoenicians a circle of beads resembling a rosary was used in the worship
of Astarte, the mother goddess, about 800 B.C. This rosary is seen
on some early Phoenician coins. The Brahmans have from early times
used rosaries with tens and hundreds of beads. The worshipers of
Vishnu give their children rosaries of 108 beads. A similar
rosary is used by millions
of Buddhists in India and Tibet. The worshiper of Siva uses
a rosary upon which he
repeats, if possible, all the 1,008 names of his god.
The most often
repeated prayer and the main prayer of the rosary is the "Hail Mary"
which is as follows: "Hail Mary, full of grace , the Lord is with
thee; Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of
thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us
sinners, now and at the hour of death, Amen." The Catholic
Encyclopedia says, "There is little or no trace of the Hail
Mary as an accepted devotional formula before about 1050."
The complete rosary
involves repeating the Hail Mary 53 times, the Lord's prayer 6
times, 5 Mysteries, 5 Meditations on the Mysteries, 5 Glory Be's,
and the Apostles Creed.
the prayer to Mary is repeated almost nine times as often as the
Lord's prayer! Is a prayer composed by men and directed to
Mary nine times as important or effective as the prayer taught by
Jesus and directed to God??
Those who worshiped the goddess Diana repeated a
religious phrase over and over:"...all with one voice about the
space of two hours cried out, Great is Diana of the Epheslans-(Acts
19:34), Jesus spoke of repetitious prayer as being a practice of the
heathen "When ye pray,"he said, "use not vain repetitions, as the
heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much
speaking" (Matt. 6:7-13).
passage Jesus plainly told his followers NOT to pray a little
prayer over and over. It is significant that right after
giving this warning, in the very next verse, he said: "After this
manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven..."--The
Lord's Prayer." Yet Roman Catholics are taught to pray this prayer
over and over. If this prayer was not to be repeated over
and over, how much less a little man made prayer to Mary!
It seems to us
that memorizing prayers, then repeating them over and over while
counting rosary beads,
could easily become more of a "memory test" than a spontaneous
expression of prayer from the heart.
“Signs and symbols rule the Sun Worship world, not
words nor laws.”