It seems that this song has found its way onto a large number of the modern day Christmas albums. When you finish reading this post, you will understand why I recommend pushing the "skip" button if this song comes up on a CD. This song is especially popular among secular artists at this time of year. But what does Ave Maria mean, and what is this song about? The consensus of several sources give the following interpretation of the song:
Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum.
Benedicta tu in mulieribus,
et benedictus fructus ventris tui, Iesus.
Sancta Maria, Mater Dei,
ora pro nobis peccatoribus, nunc,
et in hora mortis nostrae.
The English translation:
"Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee;
blessed art thou amongst women,
and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
pray for us sinners now
and at the hour of our death.
There is a much longer poem from which this shorter version was derived. Following is the original English by Sir Walter Scott:
Ave Maria! maiden mild!
Listen to a maiden's prayer!
Thou canst hear though from the wild,
Thou canst save amid despair.
Safe may we sleep beneath thy care,
Though banish'd, outcast and reviled -
Maiden! hear a maiden's prayer;
Mother, hear a suppliant child!
Ave Maria! undefiled!
The flinty couch we now must share
Shall seem this down of eider piled,
If thy protection hover there.
The murky cavern's heavy air
Shall breathe of balm if thou hast smiled;
Then, Maiden! hear a maiden's prayer;
Mother, list a suppliant child!
Ave Maria! stainless styled!
Foul demons of the earth and air,
From this their wonted haunt exiled,
Shall flee before thy presence fair.
We bow us to our lot of care,
Beneath thy guidance reconciled;
Hear for a maid a maiden's prayer,
And for a father hear a child!
Need I explain why this song is blasphemous? Taking a brief look into the Holy Scriptures, one would learn that the virgin herself would refute the teachings of this song. Oh, and BTW, she is no longer a virgin. She gave birth to Joseph's children, too.
In Luke 1:38, Mary called herself "the handmaid of the Lord" and submitted to the plan of the Father. The word handmaid means female slave.
Mary is not the mediator between God and men. Jesus is!
Jesus told us to ask the Father in His (Jesus') name, not Mary's.
Romans 8:26, 27, and 34; also Hebrews 7:25 says that the Holy Spirit and Jesus make intercession to God the Father for us. The Bible never says that Mary makes intercession for us.
Lastly, Mary calls God her Saviour in Luke 1:47. Mary was a sinner just like you and I. She was just a humble, Jewish girl whom God chose to be the "surrogate" by which He brought the Saviour into the world.
I love to hear songs like "Joy to the World", or "Mary, Did You Know?" I love the line in "Mary, Did You Know" that says, "This child that you've delivered will soon deliver you." I realize that I'm talking to "the choir", but thanks for letting me share my thoughts.