Sunday, December 17, 2017
Jesus Was Born of a Virgin
(Matthew 1:18-25) "Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily. But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that whicdh is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet saying,
Behold a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.
One of the grave injustices many of the modern translations commit is to substitute the word "young woman" in place of the word "virgin". That changes the entire meaning of the birth of Jesus. Why is that so? Simply because not all young women are virgins. In today's society there are 12 and 13 year olds that aren't virgins. The King James had it right when it said that Jesus was born of a virgin. Some of these modern translations such as the NIV will substitute "young woman" with virgin. That could cast into dispute whether or not Mary was a virgin when she conceived the Christ child. The King James is explicit in its language. It doesn't use ambiguous language. As something as serious as the virgin birth of Christ, the King James Bible wouldn't use the phrase "young woman" in place of "virgin". It would be crystal clear in its usage of language. Something as profound as the virgin birth it would definitely use the proper word virgin to signify that Mary was indeed a virgin when she conceived Jesus. She knew no man before she was impregnated. That's something in itself that is an impossibility according to the laws of nature. There's no woman that's living in this world that could become pregnant without the aid of a man or without his sperm. A man must be involved when it comes to a pregnancy. A pregnancy without a man involved is against the laws of reproductive nature.
However, when we read about the account of Mary being impregnated, we read about an incident that has never taken place before in the history of mankind nor has since. Mary became pregnant without the aid of a man. On top of that she was still a virgin. That's two contradictory terms. No woman could become pregnant without the aid of a man as well as no pregnant woman could be a virgin. A woman that's a virgin is a woman that's never entered into any kind of sexual relationship with a man. Once a couple are joined together and become one, they aren't considered "virgins". However, in the case of Mary we see two contradictory things that were a reality in her situation. Mary was a virgin and was pregnant with the Christ child. Also, Mary had known no man. Even after Mary and Joseph wed the Bible says that Joseph knew her not until she had brought forth her firstborn son. When Joseph knew that she was pregnant, he being a just man was going to put her away privily and not make her a "public example." However the angel of the Lord appeared unto Joseph and told him that it was no problem for him to wed Mary because the child that's in Mary was conceived of the Holy Ghost.
Who had ever heard of a woman being impregnated of the Holy Ghost? You can imagine what some of those in Jerusalem may have thought if they were to learn of Mary's pregnancy. Some probably would've said, "It's impossible, how can a woman become pregnant without a man?" However, God's ways aren't man's ways. This was a supernatural type of birth. It was called the "Immaculate Conception." This was a birth that was foretold throughout the last four thousand years. God had promised Eve as far back as the Garden of Eden that "and I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel." (Genesis 3:15) God told Eve that after she and Adam partook of that forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. Since that time many women in the Old Testament had desired to conceive a child in hopes that they would be the ones to give birth to the Christ child. The birth of Christ was a major event that was to change the landscape of the world. Never before would the world be the same again once Jesus entered into this world.
Why did Jesus have to be born through the Holy Ghost? Why couldn't he have been born through Joseph? Jesus is the Lamb of God. He was God and is God. He was part of the Godhead prior to the creation of the world. There are some that teach that Jesus didn't ever exist until he was born into this world. However, scripture verifies Jesus existed with the Godhead. He always was. Jesus came into this world as God incarnate: all man and all God. That's another human impossibility. Jesus would never have been born into this world as all God and all man had he been born through Joseph. Jesus couldn't have been born through mortal man and have been sinless. He would've been a sinner like the rest of us if he was born through Joseph. You read in Psalms where David said that in "sin did my mother conceive me." David was born through a human father named Jesse. All humans that are born through natual birth are born in sin. The seed of sin passes down from man to man from generation to generation. That's why the Bible says that babies are born speaking lies. They were tainted with the seed of sin. God the Father had a purpose for Jesus to be born into this world. Jesus was born to die on a rugged cross called Calvary to save man from the ravages of sin.
Jesus could never fulfill his purpose to die on a wooden cross for the sins of man if he was born through natural means. God knew this from the beginning and it was planned that Jesus be born of a virgin. That's the only way Jesus could be born without sin. The seed of sin is passed down from the male; not the female. Jesus couldn't be God incarnate unless he was born through the Holy Ghost. Not only was he born without sin but he maintained his integrity and sinned not throughout his 33 years that he lived on earth. Even when he was tempted of the Devil in the wilderness, he didn't cave into sin. He resisted Satan through scripture. He was obedient even unto death. Even when Jesus was sweating great drops of blood knowing he would have to drink of that bitter cup, he still sinned not. He was still obedient unto the father. He was obedient unto the end. And it's because of his obedience that we can celebrate the birth of Jesus and enjoy Christmas. If Jesus could've sinned and had sinned at any time while living on this earth, we wouldn't know what it would mean to enjoy the free pardon of sin. We couldn't come together and spend time with our families remembering the account of Jesus birth. If Jesus hadn't died on the cross for the sins of man, we would be all the most miserable. I'm thankful that Jesus was born of a virgin and that he died for the sins of man. One of the cardinal doctrines of the Bible is the virgin birth. Without the virgin birth, there would have been no spotless lamb to offer upon Calvary's cross. Jesus couldn't die for the sins of man himself had he been tainted with sin. Tampering with the virgin birth is heresy. We wouldn't know what it means to be saved today if it weren't for the virgin birth.