Matthew 1:18-25 (ESV)
Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. 19 And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. 20 But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” 22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet:
23 “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,
and they shall call his name Immanuel”
(which means, God with us). 24 When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him: he took his wife, 25 but knew her not until she had given birth to a son. And he called his name Jesus.
In Genesis 1, God spoke matter into existence. His words not only create, they create something out of nothing. In the Gospel According to Matthew, after listing the genealogy of Jesus Christ (Matthew 1:1-17), Matthew writes of the Holy Spirit coming upon the virgin Mary (Matthew 1:18) as prophesied in Isaiah 7:14 to birth Messiah into the world to “save his people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21)
What a staggering thought. What a stumbling block. For most, the idea that a “spirit” can impregnate a virgin and this child will be born to save people from their sins is too much to believe. It reads like a fantasy novel and does very little to make it easy for people to believe. As a matter of fact, the reality of a “virgin birth” is why many believe Christians are “stupid” or in the very least intellectually challenged.
The scientific mind refutes the virgin birth because it can’t be replicated (nor will it ever be again). It makes sense to me that it doesn’t make sense to them. Make sense? 🙂 The logical mind can’t accept it because it makes no logical sense at all. What makes more sense are statements like, “She must have cheated on Joseph” and “He was stupid enough to believe her story?” For many atheists, the fact that Christians believe in a virgin birth makes it impossible for them to take us seriously about anything. After all, if we believe this, we’ll believe anything! For them, it’s like believing in Santa Claus. There’s really no difference. I know. I was one of them!
I get it. I really do. I struggled with the virgin birth for a long time. I would question whether or not it could really be true. I was looking at it from a scientific, logical and atheistic mind and not a spiritual mind. For people who don’t believe in God, to them having a spiritual mind means you have to leave reality and enter into some state of dullness and stupidity that Christians call “faith.” That’s a leap too far for most to overcome.
Without a spiritual mind, how else could I interpret the virgin birth other than it being utterly ridiculous? Truth is, without God opening my eyes to this fact, (and yes, I do believe it is fact), I could never have believed it. Sadly there are many who identify themselves as Christians but do not believe in the virgin birth or much else in the Bible.
As secular society indoctrinates our culture with ungodliness and immorality through media and “education” while claiming morality, faith or the existence of God is useless (and even harmful), it’s easy to see why many in the “church” these days do not believe much of anything in the Bible. As “teachers of the Bible” become less biblical in their lives and teachings and instead adopt a secular worldview and preach it to biblically uneducated congregations, it’s easy to see how the virgin birth has become irrelevant or optional to faith in Jesus Christ.
Does it even matter? I think it does. A lot.
If the virgin birth is a myth, how can anything in the Bible be considered anything other than a myth? If you don’t believe in the virgin birth, how could you ever believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ? How can you believe God created anything? How can you even believe Jesus Christ really existed if the virgin birth is too much to believe? Chances are, if you’re selective with what you believe in the Bible and disregard what you determine is either a myth or useless, you’re not really believing what you think you believe.
I will admit there are many things that are hard to grasp in the Bible and yes, even hard to believe. And I do believe that “belief” is a process of discovery and illumination. I also believe that faith itself is a gift of God given to us by His grace through faith in Jesus Christ (Ephesians 2:8-9). While doubts and uncertainty are part of the journey of belief and faith, disregarding biblical concepts because they don’t seem possible or make sense opens us up to disregarding our faith all together. After all, what is faith if everything makes perfect sense? Where is faith if you can understand and comprehend everything logically?
Father, thank you for sending Jesus Christ into this world, born of a virgin to save your people from our sins. I pray that you continue to guide me into all truth so that I may have confidence to proclaim your Word to those you bring in my life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!
Thank you for reading my Daily Bible Journal!
Reading, reflecting and writing from the Bible has so radically impacted my life in Christ, it’s as if I’ve been on auto-pilot when reading the Bible in the past. There’s something about “sitting with the text” and through prayerful reflection, sharing what comes to mind. Because I’m posting online for others to read, I consider my words carefully and try to be clear and accurate.
This daily process enhances my understanding of God’s Word and embeds it into my conscience. It literally gets “hidden in my heart!”
I hope this encourages others to be in God’s Word every day.
For God’s Glory,