I asked a simple question in a Catholic/Protestant discussion group yesterday, knowing it would spark mixed reactions:
Jesus is God; Mary is the mother of Jesus; Mary is the mother of God. Any objections?
The only objection that came out of the group was:
Is Mary the mother of Jesus according to the flesh? Yes. Is Deity constituted by family relationships? No. Did Mary exist before time began? No. Does Mary share any of the essential attributes of the Trinity? No. Is Mary worshiped? No. Does the NT identify Mary as the “Holy Mother of God?” No. Is God’s existence contingent upon Mary? No. Should followers of Christ be referring to Mary as the Mother of God? No.
Most of these are solid points that I can’t disagree with. But they are not all spot on objections. For instance, if you ask “Does Mary share any of the essential attributes of the Trinity?” followed by, “Does the NT identify Mary as the Holy Mother of God?” then I have to ask, exactly where does the NT identify God as the Trinity?
I think whatever answer you give to that question can be applied to Mary’s status as Holy Mother of God.
Here’s how I would explain Mary’s motherhood in response to all these objections. Christians believe in the hypostatic union — that Jesus Christ is true God and true Man; the man was God, and that God became a man. In virtue of the incarnation, the Word who was with God in the begging and who was God, for all eternity, became flesh. So the mother of Jesus according to the flesh… follow me on this… gave birth to God.
Mary is the Mother of God, clear and simple.
I like the way the Icon at the top of this post represents this reality. Jesus Christ in his totality, is the son of Mary. Contemplate that as long as you can. You’ll never exhaust it!