by Reverend Anthony R. Locke
Mother’s Day 2012
1 Timothy 2:15
English Standard Version
15 Yet she will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith and love and holiness, with self-control.
I like to think of my mom as a co-Redemptrix.
That’s not a word we Protestants use. If you grew up Roman Catholic then there’s a good chance you studied the co-Redemptrix work of Mary. Catholics describe the mother of Jesus with three labels: the co-redeemer, the mediator of all grace and our advocate.
Mary is described as a co-Redeemer because she submitted to the will of God that the Redeemer should be born through her body by the power of the Holy Spirit. She prayed, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word (Luke 1:38).
Secondly, the Roman Catholic Church teaches that Mary is a co-Redeemer for her heart was pierced through with many sorrows while at the foot of the Cross. She is called the Woman of Sorrows like Jesus is called the Man of Sorrows. The Catholic Church would like people to believe that the suffering of Mary provides grace.
Of course, Protestant ministers are quick to point out that there’s only one Redeemer and Savior of mankind, that being Jesus. No one helped Jesus redeem mankind. No one is on an equal level with Jesus to save sinners. Only Jesus can satisfy the wrath of God against His enemies and make atonement for His people.
On the surface it looks as though the Roman Catholic Church makes itself an easy target, but the truth is that the Roman Catholic Church has never defined the word co-Redemptrix.
A petition was started in 1990 to urge Pope John Paul II to declare Mary as the co-Redemptrix and then define the term. More than six million signatures were gathered from 148 countries, including those of Mother Teresa of Calcutta, Cardinal John O’Connor of New York, and 41 other cardinals and 550 bishops. A Vatican commission in 1996 voted it down 23 to 0.
So for Mother’s Day I am going to do the work of the Pope and explain how All Mothers bring salvation to their family. Just call me Pope Tony. =) I am going to tie together the term co-Redemptrix with 1 Timothy 1:15.
God says in Genesis that the Savior of the world would come through a woman. That woman was Mary. Mary did submit herself to the will of God and cooperate with God’s redemptive plan for Messiah to come through her womb. She cooperated with the redemptive plan.
That’s how many people interpret 1 Timothy 1:15. That mankind was saved, when through childbirth, a woman brought the Messiah to the world. There’s definitely some truth to this interpretation, but it’s not the primary interpretation of our passage.
The most helpful way to understand our verse is that family matters, starting with child bearing, but including all the family matters of the home, are the primary area of accountability for a Christian woman before God.
A Christian mother might drive a school bus, work accounting, drive in NASCAR or manage a corporation, but her primary accountability before God is to train up her family in the faith, with love, unto holiness and self-control.
Even nature teaches us this truth. Men don’t birth babies. We have babies, but we don’t do the birthin’. If we did the population would be in serious decline.
God sends children through strong women and attaches the needs of the child to the mother. It’s axiomatic: an undeniable truth of life. Even the best of selfless men can’t figure out a way to give birth, breast feed or mother a child. God will judge the women for how well they did these things.
God refines a woman’s faith within the context of family life. My family often jokes on Sunday morning that we almost lost our religion trying to get all the children in the car and on time for church.
Ladies, answer in your mind, how hard is it to persevere in submission and respect toward your husbands? We men are God’s abrasive tool for your sanctification before God! =) When children reach the terrible twos they are being used by God for your sanctification.
The authenticity of your confession of faith is at stake. The assurance of salvation in your own heart will either be diminished or increased by how you act and react within the home. This is how John Calvin and Martin Luther understood this passage.
You are not saved by being a stay at home mom. You are not saved by being a good wife. No. You are being sanctified and your faith is being tested.
You are persevering in your salvation as you work redemptively within your home to grow your family in faith, with love, unto holiness and self-control. This is how women work out their salvation in fear and trembling before God. This is how you ladies join with Jesus, mothers cooperate with Jesus, to raise their family in the Christian faith.
I believe my mother will receive the eternal reward for having worked together with Christ to raise our family in the Christian faith. My mother worked as a co-Redemptrix with God to bring me to salvation. She didn’t add to the work of Christ, but she worked with Christ to bring me to faith.
Every mother can be a co-Redemptrix is she works with Christ to bring her family to faith. By your prayers, using the word of God as part of your parenting and instruction, by your godly living, in love and holiness you can bring our lives under the constraints and freedom of God’s law.
So whether you are a mother, grandmother, sister or daughter, you are commissioned by God to train others in faith, motivated with love while modeling holiness, to instill godliness and self-control in the lives of those that you touch.
If you will do this then you will have great reward in heaven, and your life will fulfill its’ primary purpose: glorifying and enjoying God within the family environment.
May God give us the grace to be all that He calls us to be in Christ Jesus.
 The Holy Bible : English Standard Version. 2001. Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.
More posts in this category
- Jesus told Mary, “I am Not Yet Ascended” — Didn’t He Already Go to Heaven?Jesus makes two ascents. Take a moment to think this through. There are two events when Jesus ascends into Heaven. First, after His death on the Cross Jesus immediately ascends into the congregation of the saints in heaven. Jesus told the thief hanging next to Him that they were both going to heaven. This answers ...
- Is the National Debt a Sin?Every time Christians elect politicians willing to spend more in taxes than we collect, we cosign our good names to the generational theft from future generations. This is a great sin. What is the role of the Church? We need to preach against stealing. Is our national debt really stealing? It is no different than ...
- Did Jesus Really Descend into Hell?Confessing that Jesus descended into Hell tells us what really happened in the darkness. It is the real story told from God’s perspective. Mel Gibson’s movie “The Passion of the Christ” tells the story from Man’s perspective, but Jesus descended further. Jesus descended into Hell. We all learned this in grade school. The whole is ...
- Do You Believe This?March 7th, 2010 John 11:17-27 17 Now when Jesus came, he found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb four days. 18 Bethany was near Jerusalem, about two miles off, 19 and many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them concerning their brother. 20 So when Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she ...
- The Book of Revelation Ends the Same for Everyone — God says, "Checkmate!"Sermon Series in Revelation # 01 Revelation 1:1-8 1 The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show to his servants the things that must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John, 2 who bore witness to the word of God and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, ...
- The Four Horseman of the Apocalypse — Revelation 6:1-8by Reverend Anthony R. Locke Sermon Series in Revelation # 14 Revelation 6:1-8 English Standard Version 1 Then I saw when the Lamb broke one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying as with a voice of thunder, “Come.” 2 I looked, and behold, a white horse, and he who sat ...
- Why a Trinitarian Benediction? — 2 Corinthians 13:14Reverend Anthony R. Locke May 30th, 2010 (Trinity Sunday) at the First Presbyterian Church of Tucker 2 Corinthians 13:14 English Standard Version The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all. The Trinity is one of those distinctively Christian doctrines that separate us from other faith ...
- 2011 02 06Tithing: Good Advice Reverend Anthony R. Locke February 06rd, 2011 www.FirstPresTucker.org at the First Presbyterian Church of Tucker Malachi 3:6-12 A Sermon on Stewardship English Standard Version 6 “For I the Lord do not change; therefore you, O children of Jacob, are not consumed. 7 From the days of your fathers you have turned aside from my statutes and have ...
- Do You Believe in Dragons?Sermon Series in Revelation # 23 Revelation 12:1-6 1 And a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. 2 She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pains and the agony of giving birth. 3 And another ...
- What’s at the Center of the Universe?Sermon Series in Revelation # 10 Revelation 4:1-6a 1 After this I looked, and behold, a door standing open in Heaven! And the first voice, which I had heard speaking to me like a trumpet, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.” 2 At once I was in the ...
- Reckless AdorationMarch 21st, 2010 John 12:1-11 1 Six days before the Passover, Jesus therefore came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. 2 So they gave a dinner for him there. Martha served, and Lazarus was one of those reclining with him at table. 3 Mary therefore took a pound of expensive ointment made from ...