From Ensign articles to the Bible Dictionary, we are given to understand that Jesus refers to Himself as "the Bright and Morning Star." Running alongside this interpretation are the elaborate metaphors of how Christ is like the planet Venus (Venus is the most universal interpretation of the morning star in our collective consciousness), dipping below the horizon as a symbol of death and its rising again likened to resurrection. But what if these comparisons are uncalled for? What if Christ wasn't actually referring to Himself as the "bright and morning star" at all? I think, perhaps, Catholicism has something to share with us about this star. Let's listen to what Jesus actually said in the ONE reference that has got us all spinning perhaps in the wrong direction:
It helps to keep in mind that neither the ancient Hebrew nor the Greek texts upon which the Bible are based had punctuation marks. Heck, ancient Hebrew didn't even have vowels, let alone commas. So, what if we take out the comma that was inserted as a best, educated guess in verse 16? It pretty much reads: "I am the root and offspring of David and the bright and morning star." This is His pedigree! This is His declaration of the coming to pass of something the nations had looked for since the dawning of time. The planet Venus had always played a role in the Christ story -- Venus, the Madonna star, held the "warrior son" star (Mars) in her womb. He was the "apple of the eye" figuratively but in a very literal sense, if you look at the visuals. Here's a glimpse of how our skies may have looked in the past - a planetary alignment along earth's polar axis called the "polar configuration." It's a "sign," or symbol, in the heavens meant to instruct about the nature of God and His Christ.
Our skies may look different today than they did in the past, but they are not without symbols of hope...one of which remains Venus, the brightest of the morning stars (planets) which either glimmers in the darkness just before dawn or prolongs the splendor of the evening after the sun has set. She is an interior planet - enjoying a greater closeness to the sun than we do, but is able to reflect it's light for our benefit.
The early writers of Catholicism refer to Mary as the "Stella Matutina" = the "morning star." She is the "morning star" spoken of in the Litany of Loreto and the Canticle of Canticles. In old cathedrals, the Lady Chapel was situated behind the choir and the high altar, to the extreme east, as the symbol of her as the Morning Star. A solemn mass was sung every day at early dawn in her honor, and the bell for rising was called "Saint Mary's bell." St. Bridget of Sweden called her "the star preceding the sun."
God asked Job "Where wast thou...when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy?" conjuring up a possible feminine application for his morning stars when coupled with the more masculine sons of God. (Job 38:4, 7)
Now...there is one more possibility to consider when pulling apart the statement of Jesus that He was the offspring of David and the bright and morning star. He could perhaps have been referencing both Mary AND His Heavenly Mother in one succinct phrase: offspring of the "bright star" and the "morning star." For those unfamiliar with the brightest star in our sky, it is Sirius the Dog Star, and has for millennia (especially in the ancient world) been a symbol for the Queen of Heaven, the Heavenly Mother. Christ, like us, does have 2 mothers: the mother of His spirit and that of His body. Was this a reference to them both? I can only WONDER.
What say ye?