Continuing with the exploration and reflection through a series of articles written in a conversational language about Catholicism, about God, about Jesus, about the Church and many other faith related topics. Here we present:
Question 16 – Is Mary a virgin?
When Jesus* was still on this earth, many people believed that He was different from others. There was a special authority emanating from Him. He acted and spoke as no one had ever done. After his death and resurrection* people quickly started asking questions about who Jesus really was and how you could explain his otherness. They began to think about his origins. At that time it started with the question ‘Who really is his Father*?’ Was his father an ordinary man? Surely that is not possible! A man of whom it is believed that he is God’s Son* cannot be the fruit of the sexual intercourse between a man and a woman.
Belief in the divinity of Jesus explains why Christians call Mary* a virgin. The virginity of Mary is not so much a claim about Mary, but about Jesus. This religious expression is a special way of saying that the actual Father of Jesus is none other than God himself.
In the Bible* this special event is expressed by Gabriel, an angel*. Gabriel visits Mary before she becomes pregnant. He says, ‘The Holy Spirit* will come to you. And by the power of the Most High God, you will become pregnant. Therefore, your child will belong to God, and he will be called the son of God’ (Lk 1:15). This explains why Jesus spoke in a special way about God and also to God. He did not just call him, reverently, ‘Father’, like the other believing Jews*. Jesus addressed God with ‘Dad’, a pet name. Something that was unheard of at the time.
– What does the belief that God is the Father of every human being mean to you?
– Do you believe that Jesus had a unique bond with God?
Feel free to leave your thoughts, reflections or comments below.
Watch this space! Coming up: Question 17 – Did Jesus do miracles?
Follow these links to go back to Question 1 – Is believing exceptional? , Question 2 – Is Faith for simple souls? , Question 3 – Can you be a Christian and yet doubt your faith? , Question 4 – Can a believer be critical? , Question 5 – Can faith and science get along? , Question 6 – Are you born a Christian?, Question 7 – Can a human being meet God?, Question 8 – Did God create the world in seven days?, Question 9 – What did God do before he created the world?, Question 10 – Is God a man or a woman? , Question 11 – Can you be a Christian without believing in Jesus?, Question 12 – Did Jesus really exist?, Question 13 – What is the importance of the hidden life of Jesus?, Question 14 – What is the message of Jesus?, and Question 15 – Is Jesus God or human?
If you wish to learn more about this resource follow this link “52 Questions and Answers about faith”
About the author:
Nikolaas Sintobin, SJ, joined the Society of Jesus in 1989, following a short career as a lawyer. He was trained as a Jesuit in Brussels, Paris, and Santiago de Chile. Today he is a spiritual director who is keenly interested in online ministry and discovering new ways to help people find God.
This text is republished with the permission of Messenger Publications, Ireland. To buy a hard copy of the book click here.