Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate. Therefore, let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach. For we have no continuing city here, but we seek one to come.
Select a thought to read by choosing a collection, the month, and then the day:
“A certain woman of the company lifted up her voice and said unto him, ‘Blessed is the womb that bare thee and the breasts that you have sucked.’ But he said, ‘Yea, rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God and keep it.’”
The praise given to Mary by the woman in these verses from Luke is the first example of the flesh lifting up Mary toward the status of being worshiped. Jesus immediately corrected the thinking associated with that kind of praise. I have often referred to this woman as “the first Catholic” because of her misguided exaltation of Mary.
Of course, Mary was honored to give birth to Jesus, but she was not made holy by Jesus’ nursing her; she was made holy by her obedience to God. The mind that sees as holy the physical things touched by Jesus while he was on earth is the mind of the Middle Ages, a mind that would make extraordinary pilgrimages to places deemed holy simply because Jesus once was there. It is a superstitious faith, one that would make the cross on which the Romans tortured Jesus holy because Jesus was nailed to it. Can you imagine?
Jesus did not come to sanctify things but people. There are no holy places on earth, no holy body parts of dead saints, no holy water, no holy incense. The only holiness that exists on earth is in the holy Ghost, and that holiness is within the bodies of saints to whom the holy Ghost has been given. There is no holiness anywhere on earth but in the hearts of sanctified people. Every other so-called holy thing and place on earth is a fraud, and the religion that promotes such superstition above all others is Catholicism. That religion is the mother of all frauds. Stay away from it. Jesus refused the superstition of the first Catholic, and those who truly love him do the same now to that woman’s spiritual offspring.