There is only ONE Mediator between GOD and man!
The 'conflicting parties' in this case, are of course, GOD, and mankind. Jesus Christ did indeed act as mediator by suffering and dying for us.
Another point of confusion would be the secondary meaning
of 'Intercessor', 'One who 'Mediates' in a dispute, ...to intervene'.
The Catholic use of the word 'Intercessor', is the first meaning, whereas the Protestants choose the second, and this is where they err.
There are many cases where the secondary definition of words is quite different from the first, and for some reason, detractors will invariably use the secondary in order to try to make a point.
Another example which comes to mind is the Jehovah's Witness translation of Luke 1:48, "...all generations shall call me 'blessed'." They use a second or third meaning of the word 'blessed', and substitute the word 'happy', which to me changes the meaning of the verse and detracts from the beauty of it. 'All generations shall call me happy' does not make any sense. No doubt they did this on purpose.
Now that we have the definitions in mind, let us go back to 1Timothy 2, and read it in context...
"I urge therefore, first of all, that SUPPLICATIONS, PRAYERS, INTERCESSIONS and THANKSGIVINGS be made for all men; for kings, and for all in high positions, that we may lead a quiet and peaceful life in all piety and worthy behavior. This is GOOD and AGREEABLE in the SIGHT OF OUR SAVIOR, who wishes all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one GOD and one mediator between GOD and men, himself man, Christ Jesus." 1Timothy 2:1-5
Taken in context, 'Intercessions', 'Prayers' and 'Supplications' are asked for all men. When Catholics say the Hail Mary, they just repeat the salutation of Gabriel from Luke 1:28 for the first part, and the last part is, "Holy Mary, Mother of GOD, PRAY for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death, amen."
We do nothing more than to ask for her 'Intercession' (please reread the first meaning of the word), and for her to pray for us.
Gen18:23-33, Abraham pleads with GOD for the lives of the
people of Sodom.
Ex 32:11 and Psa 106:3, Moses pleads with GOD over the golden calf.
Rom 15:30, St. Paul asks all to pray for him.
Col 1:9, St. Paul said, 'we too have been praying for you unceasingly, since the day we heard this, and asking that you may be filled with knowledge of His will, in all spiritual wisdom and understanding'.
2Thess 1:11, St. Paul iterates 'we pray always for you'.
James 5:16, St. James asks, 'pray for one another'.
And then of course, Blessed Mary already had interceded with her Son in John 2:3-5, so a precedent for her intercession was already set.
Clearly, there is only one 'Mediator', but there are many 'Intercessors' to GOD.
Written by Bob Stanley, February 20, 1998
Updated June 2, 2001