The Virgin Mary and the End Times
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The book of Revelation by the apostle John has been challenging to interpret, to say the least. Some even in the Catholic church teach that the symbolism and prophecies contained therein refer only to the time in which it was written during the Roman Empire and it has no future relevance. There are several problems with this approach:
1) the extent of conjecture to which symbols in the text are aligned to actual events at the time of the Roman Empire defy belief. On the other hand, some of the symbolism can only be explained if the actual events were in the 20th century: "When he opened the sixth seal, I looked, and behold, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth, the full moon became like blood, and the stars of the sky fell to the earth as the fig tree sheds its winter fruit when shaken by a gale; the sky vanished like a scroll that is rolled up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place" (Rev 6:12-14). The "sky vanished like a scroll that is rolled up" is John's description of the huge mushroom cloud from a nuclear bomb. The statue that gives life to the image of the beast (Rev 13:14-15,14:9,14:11) is the description a first century man would give upon seeing television for the first time.
2) This approach ignores prophecies of the end times leading up to the 20th century from many saints and mystics, including the Blessed Virgin Mary. 3) This approach places a limit on what secrets of the future God can or cannot reveal to his servants.
The 100th anniversary of the appearance of Mary to the 3 children at Fatima, Portugal on May 13, 2017 also is the 100th anniversary year of the Bolshevik Revolution that grew into the Soviet Union, the Iron Curtain, Red China, etc. Mary, described by the children as a Woman Clothed with the Sun, and her deadly enemy Marxist Atheism following quickly after in October 1917, described at times as the Great Red Dragon, fit nicely into the symbolism in Revelation 12. Some say that the Woman in the book represents the Church, not Mary. That cannot be so because the Woman and the Church are described separately in verse 17: "Then the dragon was angry with the woman, and went off to make war on the rest of her offspring, on those who keep the commandments of God and bear testimony to Jesus." The children are the church. The woman is the spiritual mother of the children, given to us by Jesus Christ on the cross. The woman, her offspring, and Jesus are all on the same side.
"A young virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Emmanuel". The prophecy of the first coming of the Lord is as much a prophecy of a special woman as it is about the Messiah. The virgin birth and the Messiah, the Son of God, are inseparable. You cannot have a virgin birth without God's intervention; it is impossible. You cannot have Emmanuel, God with Us, without the virgin birth; it is impossible because God requires a holy and unblemished temple to dwell in for 9 months. God's word to Moses was, "take off your sandals, because this is holy ground". No one outside of selected Levites were allow to touch the Holy of Holies, upon the penalty of death. In the gospel we are told we are temples of the Holy Spirit, and that when we commit sins the Holy Spirit flees (John 14:21). For these reasons, with historical testimony and teachings of the Holy Spirit (John 14:26), the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception of Mary was declared and states that Mary was sinless her entire life; a gift to her and a requirement for the indwelling presence of a Holy God.
Jesus Christ, being God and Man, was sinless therefore he honored both his Father and Mother faultlessly, even to the point of adjusting his time to go public to the wishes of his Mother (John 2:3-5). This passage says as much about the obedience of Jesus, a perfect son, to Mary as it does to the Intercessory power of Mary with God.
As he hung from the cross, in one last gesture of generosity and concern for the new church which He founded, Jesus gave us Mary as spiritual Mother to all of God's children (John 19:26-27). Now it is up to us to listen to, invoke and obey Mary our mother, following in the footsteps of Jesus. Over the centuries Mary has intervened, appeared and/or given messages to her children at strategic and desparate times as required, especially in the 20th century.
Voice From the Womb