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   MARY WORSHIP, CHRISTIANITY AND ROMAN CATHOLICISM



Copyright 1994 - 2011 Endtime Prophecy Net

Published On : May 2, 1997

Last Updated : January 3, 2009

To Whom Should We Pray? Roman Catholic False Doctrine Of
Mary As Co-Mediatrix And Co-Redemptress




While doing some conference browsing, I came upon the
following quoted material:


----- Begin Quote -----

"Catholics would agree that the Blessed Virgin Mary should
not be worshipped; that is taught by the Catholic Church to
be a sin."

"There is no reason to suppose that it is inappropriate to
ask for her prayers, though. The word "pray" means "ask,
beg, petition or entreat." There is nothing that limits our
requests, petitions or entreaties to the mighty Triune God
only."

----- End Of Quote -----

In my view, it appears that these two statements are
contrary to each other. If the Catholic Church does not
condone worship of Mary, why do we see so many processions
throughout the world, such as where I live, where statues of
Mary are carried on shoulders, or on a platform down city
streets or from door to door. In my locale, it is a common
practice to kiss her statue when she is taken from house to
house. Isn't this a form of idol worship which the Bible
explicitly warns against? Is it also not a form of worship
when she is prayed to so that some petition might be
granted? I offer the following paper in order to shed some
light on this important issue.

In discussing any matter of a religious nature, it is always
good to refer to what many believers accept as the source of
authority. In Christendom, this is of course, the Bible.

In the Book of Acts, also known as the Acts of the Apostles,
we find the early history of how Christianity first began to
spread from Jerusalem immediately following Jesus' ascension
into Heaven, and the first disciples being anointed with
the power of the Holy Spirit, the primary purpose of which
was to give them the boldness, power & wisdom to preach the
gospel of the Kingdom into all of the known world of their
day. Remarkably however, consider that despite this
anointing from on high, it wasn't until Acts chapter 8 when
the disciples received great persecution (Acts 8:1), that
they finally obeyed and fulfilled Jesus' commandment first
given in Acts 1:8. (notice the numerology here!).

Being a follower of Jesus in those early days was not a
popular thing as it appears it is today. It usually meant
persecution, and ridicule, and sometimes even death. It is
in Acts chapter 11 in verse 26, when the first disciples
have established a congregation of believers in Antioch,
that we first have them being called 'Christians'. Some say
that this name was meant to ridicule them. The Jewish
religious leaders of the day considered them to be a
sect...interesting, isn't it? Regardless of how the name
came about, to this day it is still the name used by those
who follow the teachings of Jesus Christ. It is a name we
wear proudly. It is a name which has been with us for almost
2000 years now. The American Heritage Desktop Dictionary
provides the following as the first definition of
'Christian':

"A person who believes in Christ or follows the religion
based on His teachings."

So the Bible & the dictionary both make it clear that anyone
who follows the teachings of Christ is a Christian. Of
course, we can get into a whole long discussion on
discipleship and exactly what it means to follow Christ, but
that would be extremely lengthy and will be reserved for
another conversation. My primary purpose in the first part
of this paper is to establish the correct meaning of the
word 'Christian' and to state the origin of the word.

As to the word 'Catholic', the same dictionary, in its first
two definitions describes Catholic as follows:

"Of or belonging to the whole body of Christians or the
universal Christian church. Of or belonging to the ancient
undivided Christian church."

Again, the meaning is clear. In essence, in the most literal
sense of the word, the two words Christian & Catholic are
synonymous. Anyone who truly follows the teachings of Christ
is a Christian, and he is likewise a part of His universal
church which makes him a Catholic as well. This is not
referring to a modern-day religion, an organized physical
church of cold dead buildings, but rather, it is referring
to God's true universal spiritual Church which is spread all
across the Earth in many lands.

Now, I am aware of the strong belief amongst modern-day
Catholics, who say that Peter was the first bishop of the
Catholic church...I am referring to the modern-day Roman
Catholic church. They base this belief upon Jesus' own words
when He said to Peter "...that thou art Peter, and upon this
rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not
prevail against it." (Matthew 16:18)

This verse has been misquoted, misused, and misunderstood by
many for literally almost two millennia. Jesus was not
referring to Peter as the rock, He was referring to Himself
as the Rock. This is borne out in many places throughout the
Bible, even in the Old Testament prophecies. But as a point
of clarification, consider what the Apostle Peter said in
his own words in one of his epistles. In referring to Jesus,
he says:

"To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed
of men, but chosen of God, and precious, ye also as lively
stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood,
to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus
Christ. Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture,
Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious:
and he that believeth on Him shall not be confounded. Unto
you therefore which believe, He is precious: but unto them
which be disobedient, the stone which the builders dis-
allowed, the same is made the head of the corner..." (1
Peter 2:4-7)

It continues from there if you wish to continue reading, but
the main point that Peter was trying to bring out, is that
he was NOT the chief cornerstone, Jesus Himself was and is
the cornerstone of His true spiritual church, His
Christians, His universal (Catholic) church.

Let me clarify this even more with the words of the Apostle
Paul who tells us in Ephesians 2:20-21:

"And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and
prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone;
in whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto
an holy temple in the Lord: in whom ye also are builded
together for an habitation of God through the Spirit."

In 1 Corinthians 10:4, Paul also tells us in part:

"...for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed
them: and that Rock was Christ."

So we have clearly linked through Scripture, and even our
dictionary, that those who truly follow the teachings of
Jesus are called Christians and belong to His universal
spiritual church...which is the literal meaning of the word
'Catholic'...and that Jesus is the True Rock upon which His
spiritual church is built.

So, if according to the current definition promoted by the
modern Roman Catholic Church, that being Catholic and being
Christian is not the same thing, who is at error here, and
why? We know that the scriptures cannot be wrong for they
are inspired of God (2Timothy 3:16). Why is it that when
asked, some people say that they are Catholics, while
denying that they are Christians? Is this a doctrinal error,
or simply a misunderstanding on the part of the person who
says this?

In his response to another person, the same person (whose
material I quoted above), stated that one of the primary
things which sets Roman Catholicism apart from Christianity,
is the worship of Mary, the biological mother of Jesus
Christ. To present a more complete picture, perhaps we
should also include their worship of saints through the
building of statues to them, the lighting of candles,
praying to them, having saints days and feast days, etc.
Having been a Roman Catholic many years ago, I am familiar
with the traditions.

So how does this tie in with what we originally said? Well,
if we all accept the Bible as the inspired Word of God, as
our ultimate reference source, as our manual or guide
through this life, should we not also look to it for
guidance regarding what it has to say on this issue? After
all, true Christians belonging to the universal church,
follow explicitly the teachings of Christ and His holy Word,
correct?

So we must ask ourselves, is there anywhere in the Bible
were we are commanded to bow down and worship, or pray to,
or use anyone else other than Jesus, as our mediator between
God and man (meaning humankind)? Does the Bible support or
condone this in anyway?

God will not lie to us through His Word. In asking myself
the above question, the very first example that came to me
can be found in the Book of Revelation, also known as the
Revelation of St. John the Divine. In this book, the Apostle
John (the youngest of the original 12 who outlived all of
the rest), is now an old man. It is around the year 90 A.D.
by most accounts. He has spent his entire life being a
faithful witness for the Lord. In the Book of Revelation,
John has been exiled to a small island in the Mediterranean
called Patmos. The reason he has been sent here is because
of his preaching the word of God. Historians claim that his
enemies tried to kill him by boiling him in a pot of oil,
but he wouldn't cook! <vbg> The reason for this is because
even at his old age, God was still not through using him.
Yes, he had written the Gospel of John, but his greatest
revelation & most mysterious prophecy was yet to be given.
This is what we find in the Book of Revelation.

What is important to this present discusssion, is how John
received this revelation. In Revelation 1:1 we read:

"The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto Him, to
show unto His servants things which must shortly come to
pass; and He sent and signified it by His angel unto His
servant John."

So in that one verse we have God's chain of command. God
Himself gave the revelation to His Son Jesus, Who in turn
gave it to one of His angels to deliver to John. This then
is followed by the 22 chapters of the most amazing
revelation in the history of humankind. In the very last
chapter, it is again confirmed that this message was brought
to John by one of the Lord's angels. Verse 16 in chapter 22
says in part:

"I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these
things in the churches."

So why am I using this as an example regarding Mary/Saints
worship? Well, it is very easy if you look at verses 8 & 9
of this same chapter:

"And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had
heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of
the angel which showed me these things. Then saith he unto
me, 'See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of
thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the
sayings of this book: worship God'."

The example is very clear here. John wanted to worship the
angel who had brought him this important revelation. He fell
down to worship him, and what did the angel do? Did he
accept this worship? No, he rebuked John and forbade him
from doing it. In fact, it sounds like he is telling John
that he is one of the Old Testament prophets who had been
resurrected, possibly at the first resurrection during
Jesus' crucifixion. (Matthew 27:50-53) Whatever the case
might be, he clearly told John that it was wrong to worship
anyone but God. He specifically commanded John to worship
God only, and not himself. What an example of humility!

In light of the above, how can we as Christian believers who
accept the Bible as the inspired word of God, justify our
worship of anyone less than God or His Son Jesus? The
Apostle Paul made it clear that there is no mediator, no
go-between between us and God except Jesus Christ Himself:

"For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men,
the man Christ Jesus." (1st Timothy 2:5)

This is just one of many verses on this topic. There are
also many many verses on the subject of building and
worshipping statues, icons, idols, whatever you prefer to
call them. The scriptures are very clear on this topic. They
leave absolutely no room for doubt. Jesus Himself said in
John 14:6 :

"I am the way, the truth and the life. No man cometh unto
the Father but by me."

In conclusion, having looked briefly into God's Word for our
answers, instead of relying upon others to tell us what is
true, we have come to see that worshipping or using Mary as
a mediator is not a scripture-based practice...it is not a
true Christian practice...it is not a practice accepted by
God's true universal Church. Many times in the Old
Testament, the Lord says, 'I am a jealous God, I will have
no other gods before me. Anything which takes our attention
away from God is an icon, an idol, and ought to be removed
from our lives.

As to the Marian apparitions, I will leave that one for you
to pray about based on what I have now shared with you. I
have spent a considerable amount of time doing this short
study for you, because I truly hope I have enlightened you
on these matters. I know it is extremely difficult to change
our views on things which we may have believed for many
years. We all have this problem, myself included. But in the
Light of God's truth, His Word, how can we do otherwise?

"Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path."
(Psalm 119:105)

Once we have the Light, there is no longer need to walk in
darkness.

So then, considering the above information, if we are not to
worship or pray to Mary, in whose name should we pray?
Again, the scriptures are very clear. The best answer comes
from the very words of Jesus Christ Himself:

"And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do,
that the Father may be glorified in the Son." (John 14:13)

"If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it." (John
14:14)

"Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained
you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your
fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the
Father in my name, he may give it you." (John 15:16)

"And in that day ye shall ask me nothing. Verily, verily, I
say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name,
he will give it you." (John 16:23)

"Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye
shall receive, that your joy may be full." (John 16:24).

"At that day ye shall ask in my name: and I say not unto
you, that I will pray the Father for you:" (John 16:26)

The above verses are all too clear. We are not to ask or
petition God for things in the name of Mary or any other
saint. It is only through the name of Jesus that we are to
pray.

I trust that this paper will be of help to anyone who may be
confused by this issue. What it really comes down to is, do
we accept and believe the Scriptures as the inspired word of
God...or do we, as the Scribes and Pharisees of old, by our
(Catholic) laws and traditions make the law of God of none
effect?

We must each answer for ourselves.

----------

Addendum To 'Mary Worship & Prayer':

Following is another quote from the person I mentioned
previously:

"Now if you want to see, in the _Word_, where Mary is a
symbol for God's people, I invite you to come into the Body
of Christ, the Word Incarnate, and to listen to the Holy
Spirit dwelling within the Body of Christ, and meet the
Blessed Mother of God for yourself. And then you will
understand. But you won't find that looking at words printed
the pages of a book, even if they are the words of God."

I must admit, that while I understand the intent of the
above quote, I am greatly troubled by it. In my view, God
has seen fit over the past six millennia to give us both an
oral and a written record so that we might know what He
expects of us in every facet of our lives.

We are told that God is not the author of confusion, that He
changes not, and that His word is established forever:

"For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob
are not consumed." (Malachi 3:6)

"For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in
all churches of the saints." (1 Corinthians 14:33)

"LAMED. For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven."
(Psalms 119:89)

The Bible is our reference book, our manual, our guide
through this life. God will not contradict His written Word,
or the Spirit contained in those words. If anything
contradicts what God has already given us in the past, in my
view, it should immediately be held suspect. How can anyone
know if something is truly of God's Holy Spirit (as in the
above quote), unless they know what God's Spirit is truly
like? How can they know if what they are receiving today is
of God, unless they take the time to study what has already
been given in the past? We must use the Bible as our basis,
as our measure of comparison. Such is the case of making
statues to Mary (or to other saints), venerating her,
kissing her figurines, carrying her statue or likeness in
parades down city streets, praying to her, etc. There is
absolutely no basis for it in the Bible. Yes, God can do new
things if He so chooses, but the truth still holds, He will
not confuse us or contradict Himself. Jesus is the only
mediator between God & man. The whole Catholic concept of
Mary simply takes attention away from Jesus and places it
upon Mary instead...and this is akin to idol worship, no
matter what anyone may say.

This will undoubtedly offend some, but as I write this, I am
thinking of the problems Paul and the early disciples had in
Ephesus in Acts chapter 19. To quote the whole story would
be too lengthy, but briefly: There was a Greek craftsman
there named Demetrius whose profession was to make silver
shrines to the Greek goddess Diana. We are told that it was
quite a lucrative job for him and his fellow craftsmen.
Through their preaching the Word, Paul and his companions
were apparently causing business to slump heavily, and thus
the last half of the chapter deals with the persecution
which arose against Paul, Gaius and Aristarchus. Here are
some of the key verses:

"Moreover ye see and hear, that not alone at Ephesus, but
almost throughout all Asia, this Paul hath persuaded and
turned away much people, saying that they be no gods, which
are made with hands: (Acts 19:26)

"So that not only this our craft is in danger to be set at
nought; but also that the temple of the great goddess Diana
should be despised, and her magnificence should be
destroyed, whom all Asia and the world worshippeth." (Acts
19:27)

"And when they heard these sayings, they were full of wrath,
and cried out, saying, Great is Diana of the Ephesians."
(Acts 19:28)

"But when they knew that he was a Jew, all with one voice
about the space of two hours cried out, Great is Diana of
the Ephesians." (Acts 19:34)

"And when the townclerk had appeased the people, he said, Ye
men of Ephesus, what man is there that knoweth not how that
the city of the Ephesians is a worshipper of the great
goddess Diana, and of the image which fell down from
Jupiter?" (Acts 19:35)

How similar this sounds to the situation today which exists
within Catholicism. Regardless of what the actual doctrine
of the Catholic church might be, it is a fact that the
practices I have described in this article are real and
cannot be denied. They are prevalent in every Catholic area
I have been in around the world. You can attribute it to
ignorance of the common people, or whatever you like, but it
is a reality which cannot be denied. Where I live, I more
often hear the phrase 'Holy Blessed Mother!' on the lips of
Catholics, than I do something like 'Sweet Jesus!' or
similar phrase giving praise to Jesus.

Mary was indeed blessed of God as she was the vessel He
chose to bear His Son in an earthly form, and we should
recognize that as a wonderful work of God, but beyond that,
she should not be worshipped or venerated. Jesus is the only
one who can save us. He is the One who paid the price for
our salvation. He is the One who intercedes for us before
the Father. And ultimately, the Bible tells us that even He
will return all power and authority to His Father once all
of His enemies have been subdued.

Even stating that Mary is the _Mother of God_ as I have
heard many Catholics say, is a blatant inaccuracy and
clearly reveals the misconception amongst members of the
Catholic Church. Whether this is through their personal
ignorance, or through incorrect doctrine of the church as a
whole, I know not. Jesus was not God, He was the SON of God.
Jesus many times referred to God as His Father and prayed to
Him directly, thus to say that Jesus is God, as some
Catholics do, is wrong. While it is true that through His
example Jesus manifested to us what God is like, He himself
admitted that He is not God and will ultimately submit
Himself to His Father after He has subdued all of His
Father's enemies and rebellious Earthly and spiritual
authorities:

"Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the
kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down
all rule and all authority and power." (1 Corinthians 15:24)

"And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall
the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things
under him, that God may be all in all." (1 Corinthians
15:28)

Clearly, if Jesus is God, then it would seem ridiculous for
Him to pray to Himself (as in the Garden of Gethsemane), or
submit Himself to Himself as described in the above verses.

As I have often stated, if people would take the time to
read the Bible for themselves instead of relying upon
second-hand knowledge and opinions, they would quickly see
through all of the inaccurate things they are taught by
those who claim to be the shepherds of God's church...and I
am not just referring to the Catholic church, but to all
organized religions which feed their flocks their false
doctrines to maintain a grip on their spiritual and material
lives. Even with my writings, while I believe what I tell
you is true, I expect you to question it and check out the
Bible for yourself to see if what I am saying is really
true. To make it a little easier for those of you who just
are not motivated to open your Bibles, I try to include a
lot of verses to show you that I am not just talking off the
top of my head. The Bible is our authority on all things,
not your priest, pastor, shepherd, deacon, bishop, Sunday
school teacher or anyone else. Go directly to the Word of
God yourself for the answers and don't be spiritually lazy.
If you really want to know the truth, God will reveal it to
you by His Spirit through His Word.

Before concluding this article, I want to include two more
verses which I hope will clarify this issue of praying to
Mary:

"Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the
Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and
supplication for all saints; "(Ephesians 6:18)

Unless I am mistaken, the above verse is one I have seen
used to justify praying to Catholic saints. This is most
definitely NOT what the above verse is saying by any means.
First of all, notice that it does not say 'TO all
saints'...it says 'FOR all saints.' The word 'saints' here
is not referring to the same thing as interpreted by
modern-day Catholicism. The word 'saint' is a derivative of
'sanctify' which means to separate and set aside for some
special use. In His prayer to His Father in John 17 where
Jesus is praying for His disciples who have been called out
of the world, separated for God's special use, we find the
following verse:

"Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth." (John
17:17)

Notice too, that it is belief in the Word of God which
separates us and divides us from the world. As Jesus also
said:

"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not
to send peace, but a sword." (Matthew 10:34)

As Hebrews 4:12 also confirms, the sword Jesus was referring
to is the Truth, the Word of God, and He Himself is the
living Word of God:

"For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper
than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing
asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow,
and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the
heart." (Hebrews 4:12)

"And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we
beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the
Father,) full of grace and truth." (John 1:14)

The main point I am trying to get across here is that when
we see the word 'saint' used throughout the New Testament
epistles, it is referring to the first century believers,
the first Christians, what Paul referred to as the
'household of God:

"Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but
fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of
God;" (Ephesians 2:19)

As Jesus said in John 14:2:

"In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so,
I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you."

In conclusion, when Paul says 'supplication for all saints'
in Ephesians 6:18, he is not saying that we should pray TO
the saints, as per the modern-day Catholic understanding,
but rather, he is saying that we should pray FOR each other,
because we in fact are the saints of God when we accept
Jesus Christ as our personal Saviour AND then allow the
truth of His Word to separate us from the world and dedicate
our lives to Him in some level of service.

And believe me, if you truly believe and preach the Word of
God as Jesus, His first disciples, and many others have done
since then, you will be separated from the world! You will
not only be separated, but you will be despised and hated
for telling the truth...even by other Christians...and for
some of us, it may eventually cost us our earthly lives! In
Matthew 24:9, Jesus gave the following sign concerning the
end of this current worldly system:

"Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall
kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's
sake." (Matthew 24:9)

In that same chapter, Jesus said that brother shall betray
brother and many other things which some modern-day
Christians might find shocking.

Undoubtedly, there are those reading this who are already
feeling a fire kindling within themselves against me. But
that is of no concern to me. I truly wish that you would
receive the truth of God's Word, but I cannot force you, and
don't even wish to. It must be your personal choice to do
so. That is part of God's plan. In this current age of
grace, everyone is being given a chance to make the right
decision on their own...but time is running out.

To conclude this issue of praying and making supplication,
consider this verse which very clearly tells us to Whom we
should make our requests known:

"Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and
supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made
known unto God." (Philippians 4:6)

Notice again, it does not say we should make our requests
known to Mary or to any other saint, but rather directly to
God...and as previous verses have indicated, we should do
this in the name of His Son Jesus. There is great power in
the name of Jesus!

So there we have it, the truth concerning praying to Mary
(or statues of other saints) straight from the Word of God.
Building statues to, lighting candles in front of, & making
small figurines of Mary or any other saint and then praying
to the same, kissing their feet, or similar practices, is
just not a scriptural practice...and I challenge anyone to
prove that it is. If anyone can present me with solid
_scriptural_ support for this practice, I would be happy to
look it over, but I seriously doubt that anyone can. As
stated previously, there are many many verses throughout
both the Old and New Testaments which condemn this practice.
This article is only a light study on the topic in response
to a comment which was presented to me.

Jesus is our link to the Father, and the only One we should
pray to...and if we really want to get technical about it,
if we read the above verses closely, Jesus is not even
saying that we should pray to Him, but that we should pray
to the Father in His (Jesus's) name. He is our intercessor
before God. He is our Defense Attorney fighting that evil
Prosecuting Attorney, Satan, before the Judgment Seat of
God. He paid the price, He made the ultimate sacrifice. He
lived among us, so understands our wants, our desires, our
needs, so He makes the perfect Intercessor, not Mary or any
other saint. They have all received their rewards in Heaven
and don't have need for us to pray to them or honor them in
any Earthly way other than to acknowledge & be thankful for
the fact that they yielded their lives to God & paid the
price through persecution, martyrdom, etc. so that we can
hear the Gospel and be saved 2,000 years later today. Just
as Paul looked back at the heroic saints of the Old
Testament in reverence in that famous chapter of Hebrews 11,
we can likewise use the same verse and look back in
reverence at our first century brothers and sisters and say:

"God having provided some better thing for us, that they
without us should not be made perfect." (Hebrews 11:40)

All of us, from the beginning of the Bible until now, look
forward to something better, and what is that? In the words
of Paul who described the faith of Abraham:

"For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose
builder and maker is God." (Hebrews 11:10)

And in verse 16 Paul goes on to say:

"But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly:
wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he
hath prepared for them a city." (Hebrews 11:16)

And what is that wonderful city like? Read the last two
chapters of the book of Revelation to find out. So let's not
get tripped off in our concrete church buildings, our
statues, rituals, etc. These are all temporal things which
will one day soon be gone. Let's keep our eyes on Jesus, the
Author and Finisher of our faith:

"Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith;
who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross,
despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of
the throne of God." (Hebrews 12:2)

I hope and pray that this article will be a help and
blessing to many.

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