Mary

Mary: The Ark Of The New Covenant

God uses the Ark of the Old Covenant to give us a beautiful foreshadowing of the Ark of the New Covenant. 

Good As Gold

“Have them make a chest of acacia wood [the Ark of the Covenant]— two and a half cubits long, a cubit and a half wide, and a cubit and a half high. Overlay it with pure gold, both inside and out…” ~ Exodus 25:10-11

Just as the Ark of the Old Covenant was pure inside and out starting at its very construction, so must the Ark of the New Covenant be pure inside and out starting at her very conception (The Immaculate Conception).

Metals rust as they react with oxygen. But gold is a metal that does not rust. Gold does not rust because when God created gold, he infused into it the characteristic of not reacting with oxygen. Without that extra characteristic added by gold’s creator (God), gold would rust. 

People sin as they are tempted by the world. But Mary is a person who did not sin. Mary did not sin because when God created Mary, he infused into her the characteristic of not succumbing to temptation. Without that extra characteristic added by Mary’s creator (God), Mary would sin.

Whereas the rest of us were conceived by two ingredients (egg and sperm), Mary was conceived by three (egg, sperm, and God’s saving grace). Without that third ingredient, Mary would be as sinful as the rest of us. Her sinlessness was totally dependent upon grace, that third ingredient, which came from a source (God) external to herself. God’s sinlessness (on the other hand) is dependent upon no source external to himself. God is good, period. 

Once Saved, Always Saved

The “once saved, always saved” theory of salvation that many American Christians mistakenly (in my opinion) apply to themselves can be correctly applied to Mary, who was highly favored by God.

And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. ~ Luke 1:28 (King James Bible)

God sent the Angel Gabriel to Mary not with just any old greeting, but with a greeting that is unprecedented and unparalleled in the Bible– “Hail, thou that art highly favoured.” 

Carrying The Word, And The Word Made Flesh

The Ark of the Old Covenant carried the word of God (the Ten Commandments). The Ark of the New Covenant carries the word of God made flesh (Jesus Christ).

Arks of Old and New Covenants - Copy 1

In the beginning was the Word [Jesus], and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. ~ John 1:1

Hands Off

And remember that the Ark of the Old Covenant could not be touched by just any man?

“After Aaron and his sons have finished covering the holy furnishings and all the holy articles, and when the camp is ready to move, the Kohathites are to come to do the carrying. But they must not touch the holy things or they will die.” ~ Numbers 4:15

And when they came to Nachon’s threshing floor, Uzzah put his hand to the Ark of God and took hold of it, for the oxen stumbled. Then the anger of the LORD was aroused against Uzzah, and God struck him for his error; and he died there by the ark of God. ~ 2 Samuel 6:6-7

The Ark could not be touched by just any man. This is a pretty remarkable foreshadowing of the sexual purity of the Ark of the New Covenant, Mary.

Three Months

And then there is the fact that the Arks of the Old and New Covenants made visits for the same lengths of time.

The ark of the LORD remained in the house of Obed-Edom the Gittite for three months, and the LORD blessed him and his entire household. ~ 2 Samuel 6:11

Mary stayed with Elizabeth for about three months and then returned home. ~ Luke 1:56

Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy

Finally there is the excitement generated by the Arks of the Old and New Covenants because of what (and who) they contained.

So David went and brought up the ark of God… Then David danced before the LORD with all his might… David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouting and with the sound of the trumpet. ~ 2 Samuel 6:12-15

When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her [Elizabeth’s] womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. ~ Luke 1:41

The Bible is always proven true.

7 replies »

  1. I understand all of the points you make in this post and agree Mary is the New Ark of the Covenant. But does her Immaculate Conception mean God the Father conceived her in her mother’s womb the same way Jesus was conceived in hers? And how does that not diminish the miracle of Christ’s conception? Why is there not mention of Mary’s Immaculate conception in the Bible (or is it in the Septuagint (which I am only just beginning to read)?) This is one point in the Catholic faith that I have long struggled with as a former Methodist. Thanks in advance for your insight!

  2. Karen,

    Thanks for the excellent questions! I do not believe that Mary’s Immaculate Conception means that God conceived her in her mother’s womb the way he conceived Jesus. I believe Mary was conceived by natural means.
    Now, whereas Matthew Chapter 1 shows the genealogy of Mary’s husband, Joseph, Luke Chapter 3 shows the genealogy of Mary (on her father’s side) all the way back to Adam.

    Mary’s father’s name was Heli.

    Luke 3:23-4:1
    The Genealogy of Jesus Christ Now Jesus Himself began His ministry at about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, the son of HELI [Heli is Mary’s father, not Joseph’s. However, genealogies were mapped from male to male, so as Heli’s son-in-law, Joseph is here mapped in Heli’s family line, the conclusion being that Heli had no sons, i.e. Mary had no brothers], the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, the son of Melchi, … [on and on all the way to Adam, you can read it all in Luke 3:23-4:1]

    Since Mary has a biological father, she was not conceived miraculously by the Holy Spirit like Jesus. So, what I believe is meant by Mary’s Immaculate Conception is that she was conceived without original sin– unlike every other human being (except Jesus) that has entered this world ever since Adam and Eve had children. Note, Adam and Eve’s children came into existence with original sin, but Adam and Eve did not. Adam and Eve EARNED original sin for the rest of human kind because of their sin in the Garden. Fallen humankind is fallen because we are now born with a sin nature imparted to us by Adam and Eve through their sin in the Garden.

    So, Mary’s conception in her mother’s womb happened by natural means, but was (by God’s grace, and by God’s grace only) pure in the sense that the life resulting from that conception had no sin nature. Here is where this gets interesting. Whereas by Eve’s choice to bite the fruit, mankind was doomed to hell, by Mary’s choice to say yes to Gabriel’s pronouncement, mankind was given its ticket to heaven, its Savior, Jesus Christ. Eve was born without original sin but by her disobedience passed on damnation to the rest of us. Mary was born without original sin but by her obedience gave us our only means of Salvation, Jesus Christ. Mary is the new Eve, just as Jesus is the new Adam.

    So it is written: “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam [Jesus], a life-giving spirit. ~ 1 Corinthians 15:45

    As I learn more about the Immaculate Conception, I will post about it. It’s a fascinating subject that I (for years) believed was completely invented and had no basis in Scripture. I no longer believe that. However, Scripture may not give us the explicit verse that says “Mary was conceived without original sin.” That would seal the deal, and put the matter to rest for most Protestants. However, there is a fallacy in that line of thinking because that line of thinking relies on Martin Luther’s “Sola Scriptura” (Bible Alone) method of learning the Faith.

    “Sola Scriptura” adherents say that if it’s not in the Bible, it’s not in the Christian Faith, and I have learned over the past few months that this is a lethal premise, which precludes any hope of accurately interpreting a book that we read 2,000 years removed from its closing words. It has been shocking to me to learn that the Bible is NOT the only means by which our Faith is passed down through the ages. There is another means, as infallible as the Bible itself, and that means is the Catholic Church– the only church on earth (among tens of thousands of churches) which traces its roots 2,000 years back in time to Jesus and the Apostles.

    Words of Paul:
    Although I hope to come to you soon, I am writing you these instructions so that, if I am delayed, you will know how people ought to conduct themselves in God’s household, which is THE CHURCH OF THE LIVING GOD, THE PILLAR AND FOUNDATION OF THE TRUTH. ~ 1 Timothy 3:14-15

    The Church is the pillar and foundation of the Truth, not the Bible. In fact, we only have our current Bible because the Catholic Church had the good sense (and guidance of the Holy Spirit) to canonize many of the books passed down in the Faith through the ages. Protestants love to say “Sola Scriptura” but they fail to realize that they are saying that they refuse to rely on anything but a Catholic source (the Bible) for their Protestant Faith. It’s comically ironic, and I was part of it for years. However, the Catholic Church did not canonize the Bible so that the Bible could be the only source of information on our Faith. It was never meant to be that, and Protestants misuse it as such.

    Imagine buying a car from Ford but telling the dealer “Sola Leftura,” and refusing to accept the right tires and rims. You don’t need anything but the left tires and rims, and refuse to rely on the right tires and rims. In fact, you’re going to verbally trash the right tires and rims every chance you get, and refuse to learn anything about the precious guidance they could offer your car. Your driving life would be wobbly, cumbersome, inaccurate, and it might end you up driving off a cliff. The same goes for Christianity. The Catholic Church is the two right tires, and the Bible is the two left tires. Refusing the two right tires makes your Faith life wobbly, cumbersome, inaccurate, and you might end up driving off an eternally steep cliff.

    Words of Paul:
    So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the teachings we passed on to you, whether BY WORD OF MOUTH or by letter. ~ 2 Thessalonians 2:15

    Not everything is written in the Bible. There is an entire other dimension to our Faith that was passed down by Apostolic Tradition through the ages. These precious teachings clarify many issues that seem to be only hinted at in the written Bible. For example, it is very easy for Protestants to say that the Bible does not specifically speak of babies being baptized. However, we have clues of infant baptism in the New Testament verses about people getting their entire household baptized. Then, when we combine that with quotes from early church fathers, and the Apostolic Tradition (Catholic teaching) that has endured through two millenia, we clearly see that infant baptism is not only allowed, but prescribed. The same is true for the Immaculate Conception of Mary.

    We may not have the smoking Biblical gun telling us explicitly that Mary was conceived without original sin (or maybe we do, and I just don’t know it yet), but when we take the issue in its entirety, we see that Biblical clues like the Ark of the Covenant’s purity, and other Biblical indicators (that I will post about in the near future) are elaborated upon and completed by the understanding that the Apostles and earliest church fathers passed on verbally to the first Church, the Catholic Church.

    Thank you again for your zeal for Truth and for your excellent questions!

    Tom

  3. Sorry for my delayed reply, Tom. I am fascinated by what you are learning and sharing with us. And a bit relieved to know that it is not God placing Mary in her mother’s womb that constitutes “Immaculate Conception”, but God removing sin with her “yes” to the angel Gabriel. This makes a lot of sense. And it goes back to one of your original points about the Catholic Church not doing a great job of teaching its beliefs. I honestly wonder if many “cradle Catholics” know the difference? Here again, I find peace with something I’d resisted (for no good reason other than that’s what my Protestant upbringing said to do), thanks to you. Praise God for your hunger to find the full truth and Praise God I found your blog! God bless you.

  4. Karen, praise God for your hunger to find the full truth as well. Thank you for the great questions and the kind words. God bless you too!

  5. Tom
    We need you no the radio. Hosting a Catholic show!!! I love your work!!! You are blessed by the Holy Spirit!!! This knowledge does not come from flesh and bones but by the Father who is in Heaven!!! Prais be to GOD and our Savior Jesus Christ!!!!

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