Lucas Banzoli vs. Biblically Venerated “Catholic” Mary

Lucas Banzoli vs. Biblically Venerated “Catholic” Mary February 22, 2023

Lucas Banzoli is a very active Brazilian anti-Catholic polemicist, who holds to basically a Seventh-Day Adventist theology, whereby there is no such thing as a soul that consciously exists outside of a body, and no hell (soul sleep and annihilationism). This leads him to a Christology which is deficient and heterodox in terms of Christ’s human nature after His death. He has a Master’s degree in theology, a degree and postgraduate work in history, a license in letters, and is a history teacher, author of 27 self-published books, as well as blogmaster for six blogs. He has many videos on YouTube.

This is my 63rd refutation of Banzoli’s writings. From 25 May until 12 November 2022 he wrote not one single word in reply, claiming that my articles were “without exception poor, superficial and weak” and that “only a severely cognitively impaired person” would take them “seriously.” Nevertheless, he found them so “entertaining” that after almost six months of inaction he resolved to “make a point of rebutting” them “one by one”; this effort being his “new favorite sport.”

He has now replied to me 16 times (the last one dated 2-20-23). I disposed of the main themes of his numberless slanders in several Facebook posts under his name on my Anti-Catholicism page (where all my replies to him are listed). I shall try, by God’s grace, to ignore his innumerable insults henceforth, and heartily thank him for all these blessings and extra rewards in heaven (Matthew 5:11-12).

Google Translate is utilized to render Lucas’ Portugese into English. Occasionally I slightly modify clearly inadequate translations, so that his words will read more smoothly and meaningfully in English. His words will be in blue. Words from past replies of mine to him will be in green.

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This is a reply to Lucas Banzoli’s article, “A nova tentativa de Dave de justificar a idolatria católica” [Dave’s New Attempt to Justify Catholic Idolatry] (2-20-23).

The feeling is that Dave is pressured by his readers to write something in response to my articles,

Mostly my readers urge me to ignore Banzoli as an idiot. Just two hours ago, for example, someone wrote on my Facebook page under a little article refuting yet another Banzoli error: “Man, you keep casting pearls before swine.” So if there is any “pressure” it’s to not reply.

It must be an immeasurable shame that a gentleman whose profession is apologetics and who makes a living from it alone is not able to give a minimally decent answer to a young man who has apologetics only as a hobby, not as a job . . . 

This is very interesting. Banzoli has been lying for months, saying I have no job at all, and now he wants to switch on a dime and assert that apologetics is my “profession” and “job”? I guess this is Orwellian doublethink and doublespeak. Normally such a drastic change would call for a retraction and apology. But then, alas, four paragraphs later, he writes that “this is his ‘job'”: implying that it really isn’t. So the doublethink continues full force.

See, for example, what Pope Pius XII said:

And the Empyrean saw that she was really worthy of receiving the honor, the glory, the empire, — because more full of grace, more holy, more beautiful, more deified, incomparably more, than the greatest saints and the most sublime angels, or separately or together; —because mysteriously related in the order of the Hypostatic Union with the whole Blessed Trinity, with the One who is by essence the infinite Majesty, King of kings and Lord of lords, who is the eldest Daughter of the Father and the Supreme Mother of the Word and the beloved Spouse of the Holy Spirit ; — because Mother of the divine King, of the One to whom the Lord God gave the throne of David and eternal royalty in the house of Jacob from her mother’s womb and who from himself proclaimed, to have been given all power in heaven and on earth: He, the Son of God, reflects upon the heavenly Mother the glory, the majesty, the empire of her royalty; — Because associated, as Mother and Minister, with the King of martyrs in the ineffable work of human Redemption, she is forever associated with him, with an almost immense power, in the distribution of the graces that derive from Redemption. (Radio Advertisement to the Portugese Faithful on the Occasion of the Celebration of the Coronation of Our Lady of Fatima, May 13, 1946)

I see no problem here. This is all quite biblical. She receives honor?:

1 Chronicles 29:20 (RSV) Then David said to all the assembly, “Bless the LORD your God.” And all the assembly blessed the LORD, the God of their fathers, and bowed their heads, and worshiped [shachah] the LORD, and did obeisance [shachah] to the king. [KJV: “worshipped the LORD, and the king”]

2 Chronicles 32:33 And Hezekiah slept with his fathers, and they buried him in the chiefest of the sepulchres of the sons of David: and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem did him honour at his death. . . .

Luke 1:42, 45 “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! . . . [45] And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfilment of what was spoken to her from the Lord.”

1 Peter 2:17 Honor all men. . . .

So should we honor Mary? Of course! She’s the Mother of God the Son. How could we not honor such a person? How about Mary receiving glory? Is that outrageous idolatry or a biblical thing? It’s the latter (odd how Banzoli could be ignorant of so much Scripture!):

John 17:22 The glory which thou hast given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one,

Romans 2:10 . . . glory and honor and peace for every one who does good, the Jew first and also the Greek.

Romans 5:2 Through him we have obtained access to this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in our hope of sharing the glory of God.

Romans 9:23 in order to make known the riches of his glory for the vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory,

2 Corinthians 3:18 And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being changed into his likeness from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.

1 Thessalonians 2:12 to lead a life worthy of God, who calls you into his own kingdom and glory.

2 Thessalonians 2:14 To this he called you through our gospel, so that you may obtain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.

1 Peter 4:14 If you are reproached for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the spirit of glory and of God rests upon you.

1 Peter 5:1 So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ as well as a partaker in the glory that is to be revealed. (cf. 5:4)

2 Peter 1:3 . . . through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory [see many more such passages]

Mary is relatively more deified? That’s no problem, since we are all called to that. The Bible teaches that followers of Christ would be “united with him” (Rom 6:5), “one spirit with him” (1 Cor 6:17), “changed into his likeness” (2 Cor 3:18), “filled with all the fullness of God” (Eph 3:19) and “the fullness of Christ” (Eph 4:13); indeed, “partakers of the divine nature” (2 Pet 1:4). Even Martin Luther taught deification.

mysteriously related in the order of the Hypostatic Union with the whole Blessed Trinity

Yes, she is related to God in the Holy Trinity, as the Mother of God the Incarnate Son, miraculously impregnated by the Holy Spirit and thus able to be called His “spouse” in a sense. “Spouse of the Holy Spirit” — like “Mother of God” — is wrongly thought to imply an equality with God, when in fact it’s only a limited analogical description based on Mary’s relation to the Holy Spirit in the matter of the conception of Jesus. This description is no more “unbiblical” or non-harmonious with scriptural thought than St. Paul saying “we are God’s fellow workers” (1 Cor 3:9; cf. 2 Cor 6:1).

Along these lines, there are many biblical passages about Israel or the Church being the “bride” of God the Father or Jesus Christ, God the Son:

Isaiah 54:5 For your Maker is your husband, the LORD of hosts is his name; . . .

Isaiah 62:5 . . . as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you.

Jeremiah 31:32 . . . my covenant which they broke, though I was their husband, says the LORD. (cf. 3:20)

Hosea 2:16, 19-20 “And in that day, says the LORD, you will call me, `My husband,’ and no longer will you call me, `My Ba’al.’ . . . [19] And I will betroth you to me for ever; . . . (cf. 4:12; 9:1)

Matthew 9:15 And Jesus said to them, “Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them?” (cf. Mk 2:19-20; Lk 5:34-35; Mt 25:1-10)

2 Corinthians 11:2 I feel a divine jealousy for you, for I betrothed you to Christ to present you as a pure bride to her one husband.

Ephesians 5:28-29, 32 Even so husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. [29] For no man ever hates his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, as Christ does the church, . . . [32] This mystery is a profound one, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church (cf. Rev 19:7; 21:2; 21:9)

God chose to involve her intimately with Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Who are we to second-guess Him? Intimacy with God is, again, something all believers were meant to experience. The Holy Spirit is in us (the indwelling). We are “in” the Father and the Son (Jn 17:21; 1 Jn 2:24), and “in” Jesus (Jn 6:56; 14:20; 15:4-7; 16:33; 2 Cor 5:21; Phil 4:13; Col 2:6-7, 10; 1 Jn 2:24, 28; 5:20). God is in us (1 Jn 3:24; 4:13, 15) and we are “in” God (Col 3:3; 1 Jn 2:5, 24; 3:6, 24; 4:13, 15). Jesus is “in” us (Jn 14:20).

God the Father just took these principles a bit further in the case of Mary, since she was the Mother of His Son. So Mary was associated with God “in the ineffable work of human Redemption” and “the distribution of the graces that derive from Redemption”? So was the Apostle Paul:

Romans 11:13-14 Now I am speaking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify my ministry in order to make my fellow Jews jealous, and thus save some of them.

1 Corinthians 9:22 I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.

2 Corinthians 1:6 If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; . . .

2 Corinthians 4:15 For it [his many sufferings: 4:8-12, 17] is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.

Ephesians 3:2 assuming that you have heard of the stewardship of God’s grace that was given to me for you…

So does God intend us to be:

1 Corinthians 7:16 Wife, how do you know whether you will save your husband? Husband, how do you know whether you will save your wife?

Ephesians 4:29 Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for edifying, as fits the occasion, that it may impart grace to those who hear. [is not “imparting grace” the same as “distributing” it?]

1 Timothy 4:16 Take heed to yourself and to your teaching: hold to that, for by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers.

1 Peter 3:1 Likewise you wives, be submissive to your husbands, so that some, though they do not obey the word, may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives [Paul says that Timothy can help save others, and wives and husbands can help “save” their spouses (and Peter concurs with the latter notion), thus also becoming a mini-mediators]

1 Peter 4:8b-10 . . . love covers a multitude of sins. Practice hospitality ungrudgingly to one another. As each has received a gift, employ it for one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace.

James 5:20 let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins. [Paul and others “save” other people, thus becoming “mini-mediators” in the sense that they are vessels for the grace and salvation that comes from God, won by Jesus’ wholly sufficient and perfect sacrificial death on the cross]

Banzoli simply needs to think more biblically. It’s a problem completely able to be solved. When he learns that, he will be able to easily comprehend Catholic Mariology. Catholics are so much more biblical than Protestants are, it takes time for the latter to learn and catch up. But that’s one reason I’m here: to help assist people to think more biblically.

Banzoli has a problem with Pope Leo XIII stating on September 12, 1897: “Yet our manner of praying to the Blessed Virgin has something in common with our worship of God, so that the Church even addresses to her the words with which we pray to God: ‘Have mercy on sinners.’ ”

Lots of things have elements in common with others, without being the equivalent of the other thing. This is common sense and logic. Walking and bicycling have in common the constant motion of legs. Does that make walking and bicycling the same thing? No. Arithmetic and calculus both work with numbers. Does that make them the same thing? No. Painting a house and painting a portrait of a beautiful woman both involve paint and a brush. Does that make them identical? No. Anti-Catholic Banzoli and anti-theist atheists both call me stupid. Does that make Banzoli an atheist? No. And so on and so forth.

Likewise, a thing that is not worship of God may have a characteristic that it has in common with worshiping God. Did anyone ever pray or say “have mercy” to anyone besides God? Sure; the rich man prayed this to Abraham: “Father Abraham, have mercy upon me, and send Laz’arus to dip the end of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in anguish in this flame” (Lk 16:24). Does that make Abraham God? No. But it makes him able to hear and also to answer (if it’s God’s will) a prayer.

God told Abimelech that Abraham would pray for him, so he could live, “for” Abraham was “a prophet” (Gen 20:6-7). In effect then, Abraham had mercy on Abimelech, too, because he played a key role in the entire event. “All Israel” (1 Sam 12:1) “said to Samuel [the prophet], ‘Pray for your servants to the LORD your God, that we may not die’. . .” (1 Sam 12:19). Samuel exercised mercy, just as Mary does if we ask her, “have mercy on sinners.”

God told Job’s “friends”: “my servant Job shall pray for you, for I will accept his prayer not to deal with you according to your folly” (Job 42:8). Same principle again. Why did God listen to Job’s prayers? It’s because God Himself stated that “there is none like” Job “on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil” (Job 1:8). King Zedekiah asked the holy prophet Jeremiah to pray for him and the country (Jer 37:3).

Exodus 32:30 On the morrow Moses said to the people, “You have sinned a great sin. And now I will go up to the LORD; perhaps I can make atonement for your sin.” Did Moses have mercy on his people? Yes. Does that make him God? No. “Then the people cried to Moses; and Moses prayed to the LORD, and the fire abated” (Num 11:2). “Pardon the iniquity of this people, I pray thee, according to the greatness of thy steadfast love, and according as thou hast forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now.” Then the LORD said, “I have pardoned, according to your [Moses’] word” (Num 14:19-20). See many many more examples.

There are things that creatures do that result in mercy or grace (even salvation) being extended to more and more people. This is how God designed it. We best follow His examples.

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Some sort of sidekick of Banzoli, named André Marinho, tried to undercut my argument about Mary’s intercession, in a comment underneath Banzoli’s article (on 2-24-23) that is refuted above. He thought he did so by citing words of Pope Francis that are supposedly “against” the Mariology that I hold (in perfect harmony with the Church). Rightly understood, of course there is no difference. But nice try. E for effort, and also for performance. Here are my articles that refute Marinho’s claims, along with two related ones by others:

Pope Francis vs. the Marian Title “Co-Redemptrix”? (+ Documentation of Pope Francis’ and Other Popes’ Use of the Mariological Title of Veneration: “Mother of All”) [12-16-19]

Pope Francis’ Deep Devotion to Mary (Esp. Mary Mediatrix) [12-23-19]

Pope Francis and Mary Co-Redemptrix (Robert Fastiggi, Where Peter Is, 12-27-19)

Pope Francis and the coredemptive role of Mary, the “Woman of salvation” (Mark Miravalle & Robert Fastiggi, La Stampa, 1-8-20)

His other arguments, made in surrounding comments (which were conveniently seized upon by Banzoli as an excuse not to reply to this article: “I don’t even need to say anything else”), are too ridiculous and dumbfounded to spend any further time on. I just wanted to set the record straight about the complete agreement between myself and Pope Francis with regard to Mary. This is an old trick that anti-Catholic polemicists play quite a bit: pretending that popes oppose what an apologist like myself argues in favor of. They merely expose their gross ignorance in attempting these ludicrous pseudo-“arguments.”

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Photo credit: Our Mother of Perpetual Help, a 15th Century Marian Byzantine icon. [public domain / Wikimedia Commons]

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Summary: Anti-Catholic Lucas Banzoli fanatically opposes a biblically venerated “Catholic” Mary. I relentlessly refute his anti-biblicism with dozens of Scripture passages.

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