12 August 2014

Review: The Real Mary: Why Evangelical Christians Can Embrace the Mother of Jesus


The Real Mary: Why Evangelical Christians Can Embrace the Mother of Jesus
The Real Mary: Why Evangelical Christians Can Embrace the Mother of Jesus by Scot McKnight

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Very enjoyable read. As a good Reformed protestant that I have been for 25 years now, I of course shy away from any "Mary-ology" leanings. This books reveals the Mary I have never looked at or given the time of day to. That seems to be the main goal of this book, and at least for me, it works. I know have a new-found admiration for Mary, and believe all protestants should.

A lot of the opening sections of the book look at the situation and culture that Mary was in, speculating a little to fill in the blanks of what someone in her position would be doing and thinking given the situation.

The examination of the words and meaning of the Magnificat really is interesting and looking at it in light of the time and culture it was said in really alters things in my opinion.

The latter chapters look at the Roman Catholic (RC) teachings on Mary, clearing up some misconceptions, clarifying others, and at times showing how both Protestants and RCs have swung their pendulums too far to the extreme in their views on the subject.

One thing I have found in all of my years working within the Reformed theology field, is that since the Reformation and it's theology came out of RC, quite often the Reformed views work so hard at going against the RC view, that they swing too far away from it and become somewhat extreme in the opposite direction - at times straying too far outside of the Bible themselves. Its the old "throwing the baby out with the bathwater" idea, and at times a more biblical and balanced approach needs re-established. I feel this book goes a long way in doing just that, and for that I can recommend this as a great introduction. Another book on this topic, that I have yet to read, but seems like it will be more in depth, is Who Is My Mother?: The Role and Status of the Mother of Jesus, which I hope to one day tackle for further reforming of my view on Mary.

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