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

Scot McKnight, Author . Paraclete $19.95 (176p) ISBN 978-1-55725-523-5

In this slim, engaging volume, McKnight (Protestant author of The Jesus Creed ) makes the case that the real Mary of the Bible has been hijacked by theological controversies. He begins by noting that Mary has been seen by turns as a compliant "resting womb," a damaging stereotype of passivity, a Christmas figure and a source of "reaction formation" by Protestants, as well as the mother of Jesus. "The real Mary is no offense to Protestants, but rather a woman for us to honor," he insists, envisioning her as an impoverished, bold, gutsy woman of faith. He also portrays her as neither goddess nor supersaint, but as the mother of God. McKnight lends interesting cultural context to Mary's simple and courageous words, "let it be," and unpacks the Magnificat as a song of protest and revolution. He poignantly portrays Mary's gradual knowledge that her son would not be the triumphant king envisioned as Messiah, and makes a somewhat controversial case for Mary having other children. His sections on the immaculate conception and Mary as mediatrix in prayer should help debunk some Protestants' false impressions of Catholic belief. McKnight's lucid, sometimes humorous, conversational style makes this an accessible book for a wide pool of evangelical readers. (Jan.)

Reviewed on: 11/13/2006
Release date: 12/01/2006
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 978-1-55725-551-8
Paperback - 188 pages - 978-1-61261-901-9
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