Friday, November 5, 2010

Truth of the Virgin Birth: Objections

Dr. David R. ReaganPDFBy Dr. David R. Reagan

Let's continue with our search for evidence of the innocence of Mary. The next piece of evidence is to be found in a beautiful song that Mary sings to Elizabeth:

46 Then Miryam said, "My soul magnifies Adonai;

47 "and my spirit rejoices in God, my Savior,

48 "who has taken notice of his servant-girl in her humble position. For imagine it! From now on, all generations will call me blessed.

49 "The Mighty One has done great things for me! Indeed, His name is Holy;

50 "and in every generation He has mercy on those who fear Him."

I ask you, what unwed pregnant girl has ever behaved in this manner, singing songs of praise to God in front of her relatives? The behavior of Mary is the behavior of innocence!


The Response of Joseph

And her innocence is also confirmed by what Matthew tells us about the behavior of her husband, Joseph. Matthew says that because Joseph was a righteous man, he at first wanted to divorce Mary quietly, but then changed his mind and decided to go ahead with the marriage because an angel appeared to him and assured him of Mary's innocence (Matthew 1:18-23).


Joseph

Matthew makes it clear that Joseph's initial response to the news of Mary's pregnancy was one of shock. He was clearly an innocent party. And his willingness to continue with the marriage showed that he was convinced by the angel's visitation that Mary, also, was completely innocent.


The World's Objections

Yet, the world, including some professing Christian leaders, screams "Nonsense!"

"It's scientifically impossible!" they say. Well, of course it is! But the conception of Jesus was a miracle of God performed by the One who spoke the whole universe into existence. As Gabriel said to Mary, "Nothing is impossible with God."

The critics respond, "But it's mentioned only in Matthew and Luke. There is no mention of it in the Gospels of Mark and John, nor is there any mention of it in the epistles of Paul, Peter and John." My response is to ask, "How many times must God state something for it to be true?" One is enough for me.

It is stated specifically in two Gospels, and it is referred to indirectly by Paul in Galatians 4:4 where he refers to Jesus as having been "born of a woman," which was a very quaint statement in a male dominant culture.

The critics counter by claiming that the early Christians simply tried to deify Jesus by relating his birth to pagan myths of great people, like Alexander the Great — people who were supposedly born of a union between a god and an earthly woman. But all such myths crudely pictured gods coming to earth and having sexual intercourse with women.

The idea that Orthodox Jews in the First Century would try to deify their Messiah by applying pagan myths to Him is preposterous. It is equally preposterous to believe that they would devote their lives to a myth and be willing to die for it.

The last gasp of the critics is their contention that a virgin birth was nowhere anticipated in the Hebrew Scriptures, and therefore, it had to be a myth that was conjured up later by ignorant and superstitious people.

But this ignores the fact that the two writers who mention the virgin birth were both educated men — Matthew, the former Roman tax collector, and Luke, a medical doctor.


The argument also ignores the fact that the virgin birth of the Messiah was definitely anticipated in Bible prophecy. We'll look at that point in the next installment of this "Truth of the Virgin Birth" series.

8 comments:

Rodney said...

Though this comment will appear out of topic I would like to share a personal miracle of mine. Six years ago my wife had her tubes tied in an effort to prevent further pregnancies. While we foolishly thought to overstep the plan of God in our lives, our daughter Juleah Rachel was born on October 30th.

We are happy to report this precious gift from the Lord God, formed by his might hands. The pregnancy of my wife was considered a risk and required a Cesarean, when her womb was cut open, the Doctor noticed her tubes were still yet tied. This is our eighth child, we now have 5 girls and 3 boys.

The Lord has blessed us beyond measure and we are thankful to have such wonderful and healthy children. Miracles are a testimony of the love of God for his children and we were fortunate to experience this for ourselves in the form of a little bundle of joy.

Expected Imminently said...

Rodney
That is absolutely brilliant news, I am so pleased for you both.

I have one itsy, bitsy problem with this miracle!

I too was 'cut and tied' many years ago after fourth son (while on 'the pill'). The thing is, I am a pensioner. It happened to Mrs Abraham and my name begins with an S - and my second name is Mary, and my third is Elizabath. \O/

A word to the wise. Being tied isn't enough, it also requires tubes to be CUT and tied.
:D

Rodney said...

Perhaps E.I. you are correct, yet she was also to be a twin, the other fetus did not develop, yet the amniotic sac remained full with the placenta. The Doctor initially thought it to be a cist, yet it continued to grow and then was clearly identified. Though her twin did not develop, she was healthy as an ox. So you see, she it still a miracle child.

Expected Imminently said...

Rodney
OF COURSE your baby is a miracle! In spite of man’s best efforts to prevent it; she has been born and is known to God. I regret if I gave the impression she wasn’t.

My first boys were twins and they too were miracles in a similar way. In the early days of my pregnancy, I had a threatened miscarriage – but apart from perpetual vomiting, the pregnancy continued normally.

I had a suspicion I was having twins, but after specialist examination I was told that because I had such a narrow pelvis, had I been expecting two, I would have spontaneously aborted.

When I was 8 ½ months, they sent me for an Xray, so on my 21st birthday I learned I was indeed expecting twins. (I looked like the side of a barn with the doors left open).

After 9 ½ months, still no signs of labour, so I was admitted to Genea’ and was put on a drip to induce labour - then I was prepared for a Caesar for three days. Eventually they used a machine to suck baby out by his head!

Then they got ready for a breech birth – but I said ‘it’s fine, he’s just turned around’ with snorts of derision I was asked how I could possibly know that. They were taken aback to discover 2nd baby had indeed turned and was head down and delivered normally. All my boys were ‘helped’ to be born as they, like me, were 10 month pregnancies.

Examining the placenta, they discovered that one sac had failed, and were amazed that both babies were being sustained by sharing just the one. Not only that, they realised my twins had been triplets, so my threatened miscarriage had indeed happened.

If baby three had not left when he did, all three babies would have been miscarried. He has a name and we look forward to meeting him with Jesus.

God bless you and your precious family.
Sue

Expected Imminently said...

Hello Nathan and all

The rejection of the virgin birth, among other doctrines, comes from two 19th Century, Church of England heretics Westcott and Hort. They were opposed to the Textus Receptus and found a faulty, incomplete Greek Codex from which the modern translations have emerged.

They were successfully changing Scripture until the discovery of the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’. Scrolls are much older than the Codices and ‘lo and behold’ the more ancient documents were the same as the Received Text; thankfully the Lord had ‘raised up a standard’ against the enemies flood of heresy.

The safest TRANSLATION into ENGLISH is the good old KJV as it is a primary translation (directly from Greek to English) its minor errors are well known and do not affect doctrine in any way. The NKJ has more faults than the old KJV but follows the TR. The NIV is from the Sinai/Vaticanus which finished at Hebrew 9, so they found other Latin INTERPRETATIONS, from which they did an English INTERPRETATION so they aren’t even TRANSLATIONS, from Hebrews 9 to Revelation.

With the exception of the NKJ, this is the case for ALL modern translations including the NASV.

I am only just re-learning about this, so suffice it to say that the ‘scholarship’ of Westcott and Hort AND the ineptitude of their publishers has had my blood pressure flashing critical. Dr. David Hocking has been the easiest for me to understand so far. “Which Bible is Best”, and others can be viewed at:

http://www.radiofreechurch.com/speaker_display/2

P.S. I/They are NOT advocating ‘The KJV Only’ movement.

Nathan Jones said...

Number 8?!? That's great, Rodney, congratulations! I thought you were going to say it was a "miraculous conception," but then I guess it could indeed fall under such a claim. God bless your wife! Hope you guys are getting some sleep.

Fascinating and touching story, E.I.! Both the joys and pains of childbirth don't stop at delivery day, do they?

Expected Imminently said...

That's right Nathan! There are two breaks in parenting, banks and hearts.

Have to say I have embarrased myself; too much info I fear. If I don't shut up, my entire life story will be published on 'The Christ in Prophecy Journal'.

God bless all Mums and Dads.

Nathan Jones said...

At least it's an interesting story, Sue!