The issue of the "virgin birth" is not, in my opinion, of a redemptive (affecting our redemption) nature. I address it primarily because many utilize it as "proof" that Messiah is God. However, there are many sincere seekers of truth that realize Messiah is NOT God yet still believe in the virgin birth. I consider such people to be worshippers of the TRUE God (vs. those that promote a "God in the flesh" Messiah), and we enjoy full fellowship together even though we may disagree on this particular issue. Nevertheless, I consider it my duty as I strive to serve the ONE and ONLY God to present my opinion since I feel the virgin birth concept is a pagan derived fabrication that was "edited" into the Messianic writings (New Testament) by scribes that were steeped in the mystery Babylon religion.
Also, let me be clear in stating that one of my primary objectives is to indeed show that the "virgin" birth is NOT a redemptive issue, that is it does NOT decide the eternal fate of an individual. The New Testament very clearly does not present, as necessary for salvation, that one must accept (or deny) the virgin birth. Even the most forceful proponents of the literal virgin birth must admit, unless they are dishonest, that the virgin birth issue is not presented in the New Testament as a doctrine that determines one's eternal destiny. In other words, study the issue and believe as you wish, knowing your sincere opinion will not influence your eternal life. It is NOWHERE stated in the New Testament that a person must accept the "virgin birth" in order to obtain eternal life. Anyone who states otherwise can be easily proven wrong.
A primary objective of this article can be summed up by the following, which appears later in this discussion and which I felt useful to state to help define my reasons for composing this article.IF Messiah was born of a "virgin" with no earthly father, why is it so rarely mentioned in the New Testament? IF such an event occurred, it would have been an astounding miracle and a subject of frequent discussion! Yet, the New Testament authors virtually never even mention it! This fact alone makes its actual occurrence unlikely.
- It is NEVER mentioned in ANY of the epistles.
- It is NEVER mentioned by Yeshua (jesus) the Messiah.
- It is NEVER mentioned in ANY recorded presentations of the "gospel" in Acts or the epistles.
- It is NEVER mentioned ANYWHERE as part of a necessary belief a person must accept! EVER!
- The ONLY place it is mentioned, or even hinted at, is in the alleged (and contradictory) birth accounts of Matthew and Luke!
- Yet Christianity, counterfeit Messianism, and many monotheistic Messianics consider it a crucial doctrine even though Scripture most certainly shows it to NOT be crucial!
The myth of the "virgin birth" of Messiah is a classic example of trying to "fit a square peg in a round hole." In this case the "square peg" is inaccurate traditional Christian doctrine (hereditary sin, God incarnate, Mary the "mother of God," etc.) and the "round hole" is Scriptural truth. Of course a square peg with a length/width dimension equal to the diameter of a round hole will never fit unless the round hole is destroyed to force a fit. A "forced fit" is exactly what is often done by traditional Constantinian Christian leaders as they shred Scriptural context and utilize a "cut-and-paste" tactic in their vain attempts to force-fit many of their doctrines into Scripture. Just as the round hole is ripped and distorted into an unrecognizable mess, so Scripture is likewise distorted by Christian apologists.
Some people sincerely feel that I practice hypocrisy when I chastise others for rejecting the teachings of the New Testament even as I question the few passages of the New Testament found in Matthew and Luke that appear to advance the notion of a "virgin" birth. I understand their opinion but feel they are wrong for the following reasons:
The virgin birth is proven by its lack of emphasis in the New Testament, which I discuss later, to be a trivial issue. Actually, most of the opposition from those accusing me of being hypocritical is due to their refusal to admit this unambiguous fact. They simply refuse to admit the trivial, non-redemptive nature and non-emphasis given the "virgin" birth in New Testament. Their emotional attachment to the "virgin" aspect of Messiah's birth prevents them from practicing clear, unbiased thinking. They prove by their fixation on the "virgin" aspect that they actually DO view it as important or redemptive and are simply irritated by the fact that they cannot substantiate its importance from Scripture. It is that irritation they possess that often motivates them to attack the many who feel as I do about this issue.
- The number of verses that actually refer in an unambiguous way to a "virgin" birth, a birth without normal sexual intercourse, are very few in number. Though I haven't counted them. I suspect there are less than five. Sure, there are more than five that refer to the birth of Messiah, but when the specific verses supporting a CLEAR "virgin" birth are highlighted among those passages they are shown to represent a tiny fraction of the overall number of "birth" passages.
Therefore, even if I "reject" those verses, the actual number being "rejected" can probably be counted on one hand.
Closely associated to the last point is the fact that the primary issue of importance that the New Testament gospel authors of Matthew and Luke wished to convey in their birth accounts is that Yeshua is a descendent of King David. I discuss that in this article and prove that a "virgin" birth seriously jeopardizes that necessary ingredient that must be part of Messiah's resume. Therefore, "virgin" birth proponents unwittingly weaken Yeshua's claim to be Messiah.
It is more accurate to say I "question" or am suspicious of the origins of the "virgin" passages than it is to say I outright reject them. And my suspicions are strongly supported, as you will see in the material presented in this article.
Equating sincere rejection or suspicions about the origins of the virgin birth passages with other doctrines of the New Testament that are clearly redemptive or relevant to salvation is unwise and, I feel, betrays an effort to escalate this issue to a level it does not deserve. This is done by ALL those who disagree with me and in every case the imbalance in their arguments is very transparent to anyone who sincerely considers the issue. It is a gross misrepresentation of the New Testament to claim the "virgin" aspect is as crucial as other issues to which it is often listed as equal in importance from the New Testament writings. Again, the "virgin" birth is an issue that is NEVER mentioned again in the New Testament or listed among the "salvation" relevant issues by any writer, including Matthew and Luke. Even if it is true, it still is rather trivial, and I would still view it as trivial, which is why I have no real disagreement with "virgin" birth proponents unless they wrongly use it to prove Messiah is "God in the flesh" or, implicit in such false teachings, to substantiate "hereditary sin."
Similar to the last point, sometimes other rarely mentioned issues, which ARE clearly redemptive and more crucial than the "virgin" birth, are put forth to combat my rejection of the virgin birth. The intent is to show that just because an issue is rarely mentioned does not mean it is trivial. I fully agree with the premise of such an argument; however, it is always the case that the other rarely discussed issues in the New Testament used in such arguments against my position are known by those arguing them to be important and are, therefore, specifically chosen in such a way so as to confuse the issue. They painstakingly search for such "gotchas" knowing their comparisons are a bit deceitful.This method of argument used by "virgin" promoters, just like the other points, especially point number 5, is a "red herring," a type of trickery thrown into the discussion by people who know their arguments are otherwise very weak. Such methods commonly used by "virgin" birth promoters represent a classic case of "comparing apples to oranges," and I personally feel such methods of debate are disingenuous.
- Finally, it is a certain FACT that there is a tiny amount of textual corruption in the New Testament. Textual corruption is not the same thing as translation errors. Textual corruption, as I define it, refers to verses or individual words that were ADDED by misguided scribes as they copied the copies of the copies of the copies ... of the original manuscripts. It also refers to the probable DELETION or CHANGING of passages in the original manuscripts. I firmly and irrevocably believe that such corruption represents a tiny, almost negligible fraction of the overall number of New Testament passages and that the common counter-missionary accusations of New Testament forgery are blatantly false and demonic. Therefore, the idea that the handful of verses that refer to Messiah's "virgin" birth may be corrupt is not wildly imaginative. It is VERY possible, and I believe probable, that to foster the pagan concept of a "virgin" birth early church scribes "tweaked" the manuscripts to advance their bias. Corruption is rather easily recognized by noting the inconsistency a particular verse shows relative to the rest of Scripture or to the rather clear spiritual intent (circumcision for instance) of Scriptural teachings. Since there is NOTHING besides the gospels of Matthew and Luke ever again mentioned about the "virgin" birth by Yeshua or the New Testament writers (even though such an occurrence, if it really happened, should have been OFTEN referenced) the "virgin" account is proven to be extremely inconsistent with the rest of Scripture and therefore strong evidence is seen that the "virgin" birth accounts are probably corrupt additions to the New Testament. It is even proven to be inconsistent with the rest of the New Testament! I discuss this further in the article. Thus, my rejection of the "virgin" birth cannot be legitimately represented as being equal to rejecting the New Testament. I simply point out a clear inconsistency that the "virgin" birth promoters refuse to admit is present because of their emotional or doctrinal dependence upon the issue.
This article discusses an issue of importance due primarily to its emphasis within traditional Christianity. In my opinion it may indeed be important with regard to the issue of whether or not Yeshua (jesus) is the BIBLICAL Messiah. It also represents one of the clearest examples of ignorance and/or deception that exists in traditional Christianity and counterfeit Messianism.
Ok, be honest. Admit it. Christians enjoy the thought of "baby jesus" in the context of the "virgin birth". It appeals to the "mother" in all of us. Christians want to believe the "virgin birth" account because it is such a beautiful story! The intense desire to believe something is a powerful emotion to overcome, and this desire is a primary reason why many refuse to consider that the alleged birth accounts of Messiah may be corrupted.
"Sugar and spice and everything nice" dances in the minds of most Christians during Christmas (an undeniably pagan holiday). They enjoy thinking about the sweet and emotional scenario of the "virgin Mary" with the cute little baby jesus in her arms or asleep in the manger. Most Christians don't consider the fact they are actually promoting "baby God" in the arms of Mary, a thought that is repulsive to those of us that truly revere the Almighty, infinite Creator YHVH or that have knowledge of the foundational Hebraic truths of Scripture. Anyone that doubts the extreme emotionalism inherent in the "virgin birth" story need only view the horrendous idolatry of "the blessed virgin" that exist within the Roman Catholic church, which has created an entire set of "Marian dogmas" surrounding the "virgin birth" story. Most Christians consider the virgin birth to be heartwarming, sweet and beautiful.
There is an "all or nothing" mindset within Christianity. Christianity being that is a "binary" religion - a religion that is 1 or 0, "yes" or "no", "grace" or "works", "saved" or "damned", etc. Most Christians will only accept "all" of the birth story and refuse to consider that, perhaps, it may not be totally accurate. Most of it may be true, but the "virgin" aspect is probably false and is most certainly NOT supported from the Tanakh (older Testament) - a fact I will prove in this article.
I realize most will angrily condemn me and reject this article, as well as most other facts I present on this web site, without even studying or looking at the evidence shown. So be it. The majority love not the truth and prefer to believe the lie (2 Thes. 2:10,11).
I have found that most Christians and Messianics flee those truths they wish not to accept and will usually not even devote time to study them. We are warned that such widespread deception is exactly what will be found by Yeshua when he returns to finally rebuke the false teachers, violators of the Divine teachings, and all others who struggle to perpetuate the age-old lies of the mystery Babylon religion.
I invite you to read on if you are sincerely searching for truth, because what I will prove is basic to whether or not you worship the TRUE Messiah that was promised through the prophets of the Tanakh (Old Testament) or the false Messiah of the antichrist promoting great harlot.
What I will prove is that IF Yeshua was born of a "virgin" mother he is NOT the Messiah of Scripture. Note that I said Messiah "of Scripture". I will show that the "Christ" of traditional Christianity and counterfeit Messianism is actually derived from pagan mystery sun-god religions from which many traditional Christian teachings originate.
The following issues constitute my argument that the virgin birth is a fraudulent manipulation of New Testament writings:
I will address the arguments regarding the likely more proper translation of the word often rendered as "virgin" in Isaiah 7:14.
I will also address the common use of the Septuagint Greek translation by those promoting the Babylonish mystery religion "virgin birth".
My final comparison to the alleged Isaiah 7:14 prophecy of the "virgin birth" will be to illustrate how IF it does indeed prophesy about Messiah, it can only do so as a "near-far" prophecy - one that has a "near" (at the time of the prophecy) and a "far" (a second more distant meaning) application. And IF it is such a near-far prophecy, it MUST be consistent in its application. As I will show, the traditional Christian application to Messiah's birth is NOT consistent with its original application to the birth of Isaiah's son. I fully accept the presence of "near-far" prophecies; however, Isaiah 7:14 does not appear to pass the consistency test that is required for such an application.
The belief among Christians and counterfeit Messianics that the New Testament writings are "perfectly" accurate will be discussed. The incorrect belief that the New Testament is "infallible" is a primary reason why so many accept the virgin birth scenario.
I will discuss the absolute necessity for Messiah to be a literal descendant of King David through his human father and how this fact of Scripture is discarded by Christian/Messianic apologists as they promote a false Messiah (antichrist) - a REPLACEMENT Messiah that usurps and replaces the true Messiah of Scripture.
The simple fact is that the "virgin birth" is never again mentioned or implied anywhere in the New Testament writings except for the alleged birth accounts in Matthew's and Luke's gospels. Furthermore, even in those birth accounts the "virgin" aspect is not given emphasis except for the handful of verses. This undeniable fact provides strong evidence that the "virgin birth" probably never happened. As part of this point is the clear and irrefutable fact that acceptance of the virgin birth is NOWHERE stated as a necessary belief within the pages of the New Testament writings!
This begs the question, if the New Testament writings NEVER state it is necessary to accept the virgin birth, why do traditional Christians and Christianized Messianics teach one MUST accept it? Exactly what are they really promoting since they present demands regarding what one must believe that are nowhere found in the Biblical writings? Elsewhere in other articles I make this same argument regarding the demand within Christianity and counterfeit Messianism that one must accept that Messiah Yeshua is God. The demand that one MUST accept that Messiah is "God in the flesh" is also NOWHERE found in ANY examples of conversion recorded in the Apostolic writings (New Testament).
Just so no misunderstanding will occur, allow me to define what I mean when I say "virgin birth". In this article "virgin birth" is defined as becoming pregnant - conceiving a child - without the normal sexual union between man and woman. It is the act of conceiving without loosing one's virginity. I define a "virgin birth" as human conception without the normal fertilization of the female egg with the male sperm - male sperm which is deposited by and/or originates from a normal human male. In that light, my use of the term "virgin" is to denote the one to whom the virgin birth, as just defined, applies. It is my firm conviction - a conviction fully supported from the Holy Scriptures - that Mary, the mother of Yeshua, did not conceive as a virgin, in the sense of not having relations with Joseph. I will specify when and where my use of the term "virgin" differs from the definition just mentioned.
As a side note: It is also the conviction of many leaders within Christianity that Mary was not a virgin. I know personally of some and have heard reports of many others who actually realize the virgin birth is not supported from Scripture and that also realize the New Testament accounts are likely fraudulent. However, they never express this "on the record". Instead, they admit their true belief "off the record". Personally, I consider it insincere and deceptive for them to continue to promote what they actually do not believe. For them and for many others peer pressure, pride, and the fear of losing their profitable positions take precedence over serving God with a sincere heart. By teaching what they do not themselves believe, they prove themselves to be practicing willful deception and prove that truth (and thus serving God) is not their highest priority.
Let me also clarify that I DO consider Yeshua (falsely called by the name "jesus") to be the promised Messiah. Most Christians and counterfeit Messianics are so confused about what the Scripture says about Messiah that they consider many doctrines, such as the "virgin birth", crucial to proving "jesus" is the "Christ". Such beliefs illuminate how successful false teachers have been in persuading many that their beliefs are Biblical, while they are actually very UNbiblical. Tragically, since the Scriptural study habits of most Christians are woefully poor, they are easily victimized by the Adversary's emissaries who are tasked with deceiving the entire world (Rev. 12:9).
So, if you assume that the objective of this article is to oppose Messiah, you are mistaken. My objective here and elsewhere in my discussions is to exalt the TRUE Messiah Yeshua presented in the New Testament while I expose the FALSE "christ" of traditional Christianity, which is NOT the Messiah in the New Testament writings. I hope to begin to shake Christians and counterfeit Messianics from their stupor of spiritual drunkenness and victimization caused by the ignorance or intentional lies of their spiritual leaders, some of whom may actually be among Satan's servants "disguised as angels of light" (2 Cor. 11:13-15).
Satan hopes to continue to present a "Christ" that knowledgeable Jews can NEVER accept, because he knows if they finally do accept Yeshua, he is doomed! A major obstacle to the acceptance of Yeshua as Messiah by many Jews, as well as many others who know Scripture, is the pagan doctrine of godly procreation promoted by the virgin birth teaching.I will prove that IF Yeshua did not have an earthly father, he is NOT the Scriptural Messiah (anointed one) of the one and only Eternal YHVH (God). This is a fundamental fact of Scripture that followers of and promoters of the spirit of antichrist (replacement Messiah) hope you never discover.
The New Testament teaches we should always test what is taught us by referencing the Tanakh (Older Testament). In the book of Acts we read of a group of people whom the author describes as "more noble" than others.
Note the reason they were considered noble is because they listened to the apostle's teachings "with all readiness of mind" (they were not close minded) and they "searched the Scriptures daily" to prove if what they were being taught was true. It seems to surprise some people to realize that the "Scripture" they searched was the Tanakh. The New Testament did not even exist at that time! Despite this, most Christians virtually never truly test what they are taught or interpret from their readings of the New Testament by seeing if it can be directly verified or implied from the Tanakh. Instead, most Christians blasphemously conclude the Tanakh is largely irrelevant. I prove elsewhere, in the article that discusses what is Holy Scripture, that ALL references to "Scripture" in the New Testament actually refer to the Tanakh, not to the New Testament.
Christians and counterfeit Messianics the world over (versus true monotheistic Messianics who refuse to honor the replacement mystery Babylon man-God Messiah) do not follow the clear teaching of the New Testament, which demands that all things must be verified from the Tanakh! Many Christians and counterfeit Messianics actually violate the New Testament they claim to cling to and shun, and/or despise, those of us who can prove that the unscriptural understanding of the New Testament being superior to the Tanakh is profanely incorrect. The New Testament writings are not, never have been, and never will be superior to Tanakh! The New Testament, itself, CLEARLY testifies to this fact.
Well, there is no better example of the need to test what is taught from the New Testament by verifying it against the ultimate truths in the Tanakh than the issue of the virgin birth. Ultimately, as I will show, the issue becomes one of glaring contradiction between the Tanakh and the alleged birth accounts in the New Testament.
Sadly, virtually all Christians and counterfeit Messianics do directly the opposite of what the noble Bereans of Acts 17:11 did. Most reverse the test applied by those Bereans by elevating the New Testament above the Tanakh as the ultimate authority, despite the fact the Apostolic writings (New Testament) teach against such an approach. When the TRUE test - the same test those "more noble" utilized - is applied, the virgin birth is proven to be a probable fabrication by those seeking to proliferate the ancient and continuing mystery Babylon sun-god false religion that has always stood against God's truths.
Now to the study.
ONLY if Joseph was Yeshua's father would Yeshua meet the primary necessity of literally being of the seed of David, a crucial fact of Messianic lineage that the virgin birth doctrine seriously weakens. So, if Joseph is proven to be his father, such news would positively impact Yeshua's prophetic hold to being Messiah. Such news would also not negatively affect his being the SCRIPTURAL "Son of God". I discuss what the term "Son of God" actually means in a separate article on this web site. The term "son of God" does NOT mean a literal "son" of the Almighty God, and I invite you to read that short article in order to grasp the correct Scriptural definition of "son of God."
A Traditional Christian misunderstanding of Scripture is shown by the common wrong belief that the virgin birth is an essential part of Yeshua's Messianic requirements. Prophetically speaking, as proof of his Messiahship, the claim that he was born of a "virgin" is indeed an issue, but in a way most Christians and Christianized Messianics fail to grasp. There is NOTHING in the Hebrew Scriptures that requires Messiah be born to a virgin. The passage many messianically apply to this claim (Isaiah 7:14) does NOT necessarily refer to a "virgin" woman, despite the claims of Traditional Christian and counterfeit Messianic preachers. Furthermore, a fact those promoting the virgin birth hate to have attention focused upon is that when the context of Isaiah 7:14 is considered the verse is easily shown to not even be Messianic passage!
Typically, the "virgin birth" debate focuses on the Hebrew word almah, which is found in Isaiah 7:14 and translated as "virgin" in many Bible translations. The New Revised Standard Version more accurately translates it as "young woman", and the New American Standard Version has an alternate rendering note, which shows "maiden" as the translation. The primary tactic used by those promoting the godly procreation teaching of the "virgin birth" is to confuse the issue by rarely mentioning the clear context of the Scripture. It is for this reason they promote the intentionally deceptive idea that the entire debate hinges on the proper translation of the word they choose to render as "virgin". For many years I was successfully deceived into ignoring the context by limiting my study of Isaiah 7:14 to the "almah" word game played by traditional Christian and counterfeit Messianic leaders.
The translation issue is a distant second to the far more revealing issue of Scriptural context, but since virgin birth proponents know the context offers them ZERO support, they endeavor to cunningly steer the debate clear of consideration of context by focusing on the less crucial and more confusing word game surrounding the "virgin" translation of almah.In order for Isaiah 7:14 to be Messianic it must be completely separated from ALL the surrounding passages. However, as with many other passages of Scripture, traditional Christian and counterfeit Messianic leaders show no hesitation to shred the context as a means to "prove" their false teachings, especially their promotion of a "God in the flesh" Messiah.
Although, the word-game regarding the translation of the word as "virgin" is a distant second in order of importance, I will nevertheless address the issue, since it is so often raised.
Those wishing to consider "virgin" as the proper rendering discard the clear Hebrew meaning of almah in order to claim proof for their argument. Actually, their "proof" is a zealous promotion of error as they intentionally stretch the Hebrew word's true meaning to the breaking point in their search for straws of nonexistent support for the pagan doctrine of godly procreation. When I discovered this I was further convinced that much of traditional Christian doctrine is built upon bias, ignorance, or deception.
The sure meaning of the Hebrew word, almah, (Strong's #5959) is a young woman of the age to be married. Whether it refers to a literal virgin or not has no affect on its being fulfilled in Yeshua except in a negative sense, since if Mary was a "virgin", Yeshua (jesus) is not of the lineage of David through his earthly father and therefore does not meet the requirements for Messiah.
The New Strong's Guide to Bible Words shows almah can mean "a lass" or "young woman".
The Enhanced Strong's Lexicon presents the word as meaning a "virgin or young woman of marriageable age, a maid or newly married".
The Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains: Hebrew (Old Testament) shows the proper rendering of almah to be "a young woman, i.e., sexually mature female of marriageable age, which may or may not be sexually active".
That almah does not imply virginity is conceded by E. W. Hengstenberg, author of the popular book The Christology of the Old Testament. In his commentary on Isaiah 7:14, he writes,
"Here, as well as throughout this whole inquiry, the notion of a pure virgin, and that of an unmarried woman, are blended together. The former is not indeed required by the etymology of the word, but the latter certainly is" (page 169).
On the same page, he writes,
"...we do not claim for the word the sense of unspotted purity, but only that of the unmarried state".
There is a separate Hebrew word, betulah, (Strong's #1330) that is used far more often to represent a true virgin (sexually pure) female. It is used 50 or so times in the Tanakh (older Testament), compared to 9 or so for almah. Strong's Exhaustive Concordance shows ONLY one clear translation for the Hebrew term, betulah. That translation is VIRGIN! Contrast this with the various alternate possible renderings for the word, almah, which traditional Christians and counterfeit Messianics demand must be translated as "virgin".
So, betulah, NOT almah, is clearly the Hebrew word for "virgin". Isaiah was well aware of this and would have used betulah if he meant to possibly imply a pure virgin was going to miraculously conceive! Constantinian Christian and Messianic theologians are also well aware of this but, as usual, twist the truth to fit their objectives.
Later I will address the weak argument made using the Septuagint Greek translation of the Hebrew Scriptures. The use of such weak arguments is common within traditional Christian and counterfeit Messianic groups.
I will concede that in rare situations the Hebrew word almah may possibly be used to refer to a virgin; HOWEVER, even if it was indisputably the word for virgin it still proves nothing. As I said, the word games played by desperate, biased Trinitarians and others seeking to promote the lie of pagan godly procreation are chaff thrown up to confuse and deceive. THE issue is NOT the translation of the Hebrew Word, almah. THE issue is the context of the passages in which Isaiah 7:14 is firmly and irrefutably placed!
For proof, I will do what few Christian or Messianic leaders do, I will present the actual context of the verse and highlight crucial areas here in the written article. This will prove that the use of Isaiah 7:14 as a Messianic passage is a prime example of biased-based distortion and context shredding of Scripture. I will even use the King James Version, the favorite of many who opposing us within traditional Christianity. My proof is even more pronounced if other versions are used; however, to preclude the accusation of using a version hand picked to strengthen my argument, I will use the translation most adored by those believing Yeshua to be God. As you will see, even the KJV proves the traditional interpretation of Isaiah 7:14 wrong to all who are sincere and open minded to God's Truth instead of in bondage to traditional bias.
There are several unambiguous facts seen in the context of these verses.
I humbly challenge anyone to show me FROM THE CONTEXT OF ISAIAH that this verse applies to the Messiah! And don't throw Matthew and Luke at me, writings for which evidence exist of scribal manipulation, an issue I will briefly address later. Prove it from Isaiah. Also, recall that even in the New Testament we find that truth must be proven from the Tanakh, just as was done by the "noble" Bereans of Acts 17:11. Almost all Christians seem to forget or ignore this clear teaching from the pages of the New Testament.
For those that may think my understanding of Isaiah 7:14 is mindless anti-Christian bias, I will now quote form a Christian commentary that agrees completely with the points I just presented. Interestingly, I came across this more than a year after first publishing this article and was surprised as you may be to discover that there are some Christian scholars who honestly present the truth, though they usually do voice a "disclaimer" of sorts in which they note how they accept the virgin birth, knowing that if they do not they may be ostracized from the Christian community. The following is taken from Be comforted, by Warren W. Wiersbe. It is a commentary on the book of Isaiah. This quote is a word-for-word quote from the commentary with the relevant areas shown in bold letters. My personal comments are shown in bracketed red, italicized letters.
"... 1. Immanuel: A message of hope (Isa. 7:1–25)
A promise to King Ahaz (Isa. 7:1–9). [Note that he immediately begins his commentary of Isaiah chapter 1 with the exact point I previously made, which is that the prophecies of Isaiah chapter 7 were made to Ahaz and NOT intended to apply to an event that was not to occur for over 700 years!] These were perilous days for the nation of Judah. Assyria was growing stronger and threatening the smaller nations whose security depended on a very delicate political balance. Syria and Ephraim (the Northern Kingdom) tried to pressure Judah into an alliance against Assyria, but Ahaz refused to join them. Why? Because he had secretly made a treaty with Assyria! (2 Kings 16:5–9) The king was playing “power politics” instead of trusting in the power of God. Syria and Ephraim planned to overthrow Ahaz and put “the son of Tabeel” on the throne, and Ahaz was a frightened man.
The Lord commanded Isaiah to take his son Shear-jashub (“A remnant shall return”) and meet Ahaz as the king was inspecting the city’s water system. Ahaz’s heart had been wavering, and the hearts of his people had been shaking for fear (Isa. 7:2); but Isaiah came with a message of assurance: “Take heed, and be quiet; fear not, neither be fainthearted” (v. 4). How would Ahaz find this inner peace? By believing God’s promise that Judah’s enemies would be defeated. “If you will not believe, surely you shall not be established” (v. 9, NKJV). Faith in God’s promises is the only way to find peace in the midst of trouble. “You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You” (26:3, NKJV).
In God’s eyes, the two threatening kings were nothing but “two smoldering stubs of firewood” (7:4, NIV), who would be off the scene very soon; and they both died two years later. Furthermore, within sixty-five years, Ephraim (Israel, the Northern Kingdom) would be gone forever. Isaiah spoke this prophecy in the year 734 B.C. Assyria defeated Syria in 732 B.C. and invaded Israel in 722 B.C. They deported many of the Jews and assimilated the rest by introducing Gentiles into the land; and by 669 B.C. (sixty-five years later), the nation no longer existed.
A sign to the house of David (Isa. 7:10–16). [Note: Ahaz WAS of the "house of David;" therefore, the prophecy of Isa. 7:14 was still specifically directed to Ahaz. The commentator is trying to dodge the fact that this was a prophecy specifically addressed to King Ahaz. This attempt to change to whom, specifically, the prophecy of Isaiah was directed within the context is a typical and necessary tactic "virgin birth" promoters MUST slyly do.] If Ahaz had believed God’s promise, he would have broken his alliance and called the nation to prayer and praise; but the king continued in his unbelief. Realizing the weakness of the king’s faith, Isaiah offered to give a sign to encourage him; but Ahaz put on a “pious front” and refused his offer. Knowing that he was secretly allied with Assyria, how could Ahaz honestly ask the Lord for a special sign? So, instead of speaking only to the king, Isaiah addressed the whole “house of David” and gave the prophecy concerning “Immanuel.”
[Ok, in this next paragraph the author deviates from the pure Scriptural context of his commentary to voice what amounts to a disclaimer in order to force Isaiah 7:14 to fit the standard Christian "virgin birth" teaching. His interjection of Christian bias at this point is rather obvious. I will place this particular deviation in his commentary in italics. Within this disclaimer paragraph several standard Christian false teachings are represented that I will not comment on within this article. Needless to say, I completely disagree with every point made in his disclaimer.]
Of course, the ultimate fulfillment of this prophecy is in our Lord Jesus Christ, who is “God with us” (Matt. 1:18–25; Luke 1:31–35). The virgin birth of Christ is a key doctrine; for if Jesus Christ is not God come in sinless human flesh, then we have no Savior. Jesus had to be born of a virgin, apart from human generation, because He existed before His mother. He was not just born in this world; He came down from heaven into the world (John 3:13; 6:33, 38, 41–42, 50–51, 58). Jesus was sent by the Father and therefore came into the world having a human mother but not a human father (4:34; 5:23–24, 30; 9:4).
However, this “sign” had an immediate significance to Ahaz and the people of Judah. [The author has now once again returned to a true commentary of the actual Isaiah prophecy, and as he does, even he is forced to honestly admit that the "immediate" application of the prophecy was "to Ahaz and the people of Judah."] A woman who was then [... meaning at THAT time in history ...] a virgin would get married, conceive, and bear a son whose name would be “Immanuel.” This son would be a reminder that God was with His people and would care for them. It is likely that this virgin was Isaiah’s second wife, his first wife having died after Shear-jashub was born; and that Isaiah’s second son was named both “Immanuel” and “Maher-shalal-hash-baz” (8:1–4; note vv. 8 and 10).
Orthodox Jewish boys become “sons of the Law” at the age of twelve. This special son was a reminder that Syria and Ephraim would be out of the picture within the next twelve years. Isaiah delivered this prophecy in 734 B.C. In 732 B.C., Assyria defeated Syria; and in 722 B.C., Assyria invaded the Northern Kingdom. The prophecy was fulfilled. [Did you get that! Even this Christian commentator openly admits the "virgin birth" prophecy was THEN fulfilled!]
A warning to Judah (Isa. 7:17–25). Instead of trusting the Lord, Ahaz continued to trust Assyria for help; and Isaiah warned him that Assyria would become Judah’s enemy. The Assyrians would invade Judah and so ravage the land that agriculture would cease and the people would have only dairy products to eat (vv. 15, 21–23). The rich farmland would become wasteland, and the people would be forced to hunt wild beasts in order to get food. It would be a time of great humiliation (v. 20; 2 Sam. 10:4–5) and suffering that could have been avoided had the leaders trusted in the Lord.2. Maher-shalal-hash-baz: A warning of judgment (Isa. 8:1–22)
[In this next paragraph the author again presents the sure fact that the Isa. 7:14 prophecy most assuredly WAS specifically referring to Isaiah's son born by his new virgin wife!]
Isaiah married the virgin, and the legal documents were duly witnessed and sealed. He even announced that their first child would be a son and his name would be Maher-shalal-hash-baz, [Recall that the author previously correctly pointed out how this same child of Isaiah and his virgin (previously unmarried) wife was ALSO named "Immanuel;" thus proviing again that the entire context of the Isaiah chapter 7 prophecy was for THAT time in history.] which means “quick to plunder, swift to the spoil.” Since Isaiah’s sons were signs to the nation (8:18), this name was significant. It spoke of future judgment when Assyria would conquer Syria and invade both Israel and Judah, and when Babylon would take Judah into exile. A child would start speaking meaningful sentences about the age of two. In 732 B.C., about two years after Isaiah’s son was born, both Pekah and Rezin were dead (7:1); and Assyria had conquered Syria and begun to invade Israel (2 Kings 15:29). The army was “quick to plunder and swift to take the spoil.”
In the remainder of this chapter, Isaiah used three vivid contrasts to show the rulers of Judah the mistake they were making by trusting Assyria instead of trusting the Lord. ..."
I applaud the honesty of the author of the Christian commentary I just quoted. Except for his one "disclaimer" paragraph about how the prophecy to Ahaz also allegedly applies to Messiah, he presents a refreshingly truthful interpretation.
A typical argument presented by Constantinian Christians/Messianics is that Isaiah 7:14 has a "dual" meaning. Those promoting this will agree that the context does NOT suggest some sort of future Messianic prophecy. However, instead of allowing Scripture to speak for itself, they utilize the common "ejection button" of "mystery" or "hidden meaning." I discuss the use of ejection buttons to "eject" from a Scriptural debate in my article on Kabbalah.
If a prophecy cannot be shown to apply from the Tanakh it is not a prophecy, and the use of Isaiah 7:14 as Messianic prophesy cannot be legitimately shown from its context; therefore, its "fulfillment" in the birth of Messiah cannot be substantiated. Unlike other verses that leave room for various opinions regarding their application to Messiah, Isaiah 7:14 is too clear to allow it to be so brutally divorced from its context. Unfortunately, since traditional Christians doggedly claim the New Testament to be superior to the Tanakh, they allow the few verses in Matthew and Luke or the notion of a "dual" meaning to overrule the clarity shown from the context of Isaiah 7 and 8. Read or listen to the article, "What is HOLY Scripture?", for my argument regarding what is TRULY "Holy" Scripture.
Regardless of the specifics of the prophecy, one thing is clear - it was DEFINITELY a prophecy for Ahaz and the days of Ahaz. There is absolutely NO HINT that this is referring to the Messiah 700 years later.
Also, IF Isa. 7:14 is a dual prophecy, a near-far prophecy that had fulfillment during Ahaz's time and also applied to the birth of Messiah, then why is it not argued that the birth of Isaiah's son was also a "virgin birth?" The same Hebrew word and same verse of Scripture would apply to Isaiah's son; therefore, the same interpretation of the word rendered "virgin" in many Bibles would have to apply THEN as well as at Messiah's birth. Whatever the birth circumstances surrounding Isaiah's wife's pregnancy, the same circumstances should apply to Joseph's wife's (Mariam/Mary) pregnancy, the mother of Messiah Yeshua (christ jesus). To be consistent the meaning of the verse THEN would have to be the same as the meaning when Messiah was born, which would strongly suggest the literal "virgin" aspect of Messiah's birth is incorrect. But instead, "virgin birth" promoters totally change the meaning and thereby prove their bias and lack of consistency, thus displaying yet again their typical tactic of context shredding and distortion of Scripture to fit whatever they wish it to say.
The common Christian interpretation that Isaiah 7:14 applies to Messiah (despite the contextual evidence proving otherwise) was possibly accomplished when scribes took it upon themselves to edit the Gospel accounts of Yeshua's birth so that the alleged birth account would better line up with the standard Babylonian sun-god mystery religion man-God of pagan thought. The typical, almost universal argument I receive from those who disagree with me comes from the alleged Gospel accounts. Thus, the ONLY proof available for the virgin birth comes from writings scholars have proven are corrupt copies of original manuscripts that themselves are not "originals."
The fact that tens of thousands of undeniable differences exist between the available New Testament manuscripts is all one need point to for proof that the New Testament has scribal corruption. If I recall correctly, Bart Ehrman says in his book, The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture, that there are over 100,000 variations among the 5366 extant manuscripts and no two manuscripts are in agreement. Even the most conservative estimate among scholars is that there are "over 10,000 variations" in the available texts. These facts ALONE prove beyond doubt, that the New Testament is NOT the "perfect" Word of God.
Only the most obstinate and insincere individual would dare deny the clear fact of manuscript differences. Of course, the textual variants just mentioned apply only to the Greek manuscripts and ignore the added error introduced by incorrect translation from those manuscripts. If translator mistakes (or bias) are considered, the potential for error is dramatically multiplied since even a perfectly authentic Greek text, assuming one even exist, can be corrupted by biased translation into a different language - English for instance. Nevertheless, few Christians or counterfeit Messianics wish to accept the facts, which prove the New Testament to be imperfect. Seriously! Many Constantinian Christians and Messianics absolutely refuse to accept this undeniable fact and in so doing PROVE themselves to be insincere!
Unfortunately, because of an unrealistic traditional insistence on the infallibility of the New Testament, despite mountains of scholarship that proves otherwise, insincerity rules supreme in traditional Christianity regarding Isaiah 7:14 and the probably fabricated "virgin birth" accounts in the early chapters of Matthew and Luke. In those accounts Isaiah 7:14 is stripped from the context in which it resides and wrongly applied, probably by biased scribes reaching for nonexistent "proof" of prophecy for a "virgin birth" that more closely aligned with their mystery Babylon-based religions beliefs. So, a person must be truly insincere and biased to apply Isaiah 7:14 to the Messiah when reading Isaiah free from the bias of Matthew's and Luke's birth accounts, particularly since Matthew's and Luke's accounts can NOT be proven to be free of scribal corruption.
Those who doggedly maintain "perfection" for the New Testament will utilize all manner of arguments from it to "prove" the virgin birth. Of course ALL such arguments are necessarily limited to ONLY a few passages from Matthew and Luke - passages that would tell a completely different story if only a handful of words were different. Scribal corruption would not have had to be extensive to totally change the birth accounts of Messiah so as to align them with the virgin birth Roman doctrines of the Babylonian mystery religion sun-god worship that was common during the times the gospels were canonized. Virgin birth proponents are forced to rely upon the small fragments of verses they cling to from Matthew and Luke since the Tanakh (Older Testament) is void of any proof of the virgin birth. There are NO Messianic prophecies that even hint at a "virgin birth"! In fact, with the exception of Matthew's and Luke's alleged accounts, virgin birth promoters cannot even find proof anywhere else in the New Testament for their belief! It is nowhere else mentioned or even hinted at in the entire Bible!!!
One "proof" argument uses the alleged fact that Joseph was going to put away (cancel plans to marry) Mary when he found out she was pregnant. Those using this argument will say this proves it was not his child and was therefore a "virgin birth".
The common characteristic of ALL such arguments is the ASSUMPTION that what is recorded in a few specific verses is actually the truth and/or was in the original autographed copy of the text. Ultimately, those presenting such "proofs" simply refuse to consider that the gospel accounts of the birth of Messiah may have been corrupted by changing just a few crucial words. They utterly refuse to consider that their belief in the infallibility of the New Testament writings may be unwise. They elevate the New Testament above the Tanakh, despite the fact that very New Testament warns them to ALWAYS base truth on the Tanakh! Later I will present one case of SURE corruption, that being the discrepancy between the recorded genealogies of Messiah shown in Matthew and Luke.
Many who disagree with me vehemently present another argument similar to the following:
"The New Testament has been proven 99 percent accurate."
Let's assume that I accept their statement. In fact, I do believe that the New Testament is highly reliable and state such elsewhere on this web site. I may even argue for accuracy greater than 99 percent. The question is, do those making arguments such as these actually accept their own accuracy estimate? Are they willing to stand by their statement? Since they so forcefully promote the idea that the New Testament is 99 percent accurate, then they must also accept what is implied by their statement, which is that the New Testament is 1 percent corrupt! Are they willing to admit that one out of every 100 words in the New Testament is corrupt, based on their own vigorously stated position of 99 percent New Testament accuracy? Obviously, if they admit 1% error they will have to admit it is quite possible a few of those 1 out of 100 incorrect words (or added words) may lie within the alledged birth accounts of Messiah! There are 7957 verses in the New Testament. Are those promoting 99 percent accuracy willing to admit that by their own estimation roughly 80 New Testament passages present false information? Depending on where those 80 (as a minimum) are located, they may GREATLY affect one's understanding of "Scripture."
In truth, even those that assume 99 percent accuracy for the New Testament still refuse to admit there may be 1 percent error. Even if they do, they ALWAYS subjectively select those passages they consider to be within the list of erroneous verses based upon their own personal bias. In other words, those who accuse me of discarding passages I choose not to accept do precisely the same thing when shown the numerous New Testament passages that conflict with their own beliefs! They are proven to be hypocritical regarding the accusations they hurl against those like myself.
The difference between me and those who hypocritically accuse me of selective New Testament acceptance is that I, unlike my accusers, use the same approach as the "noble" Bereans (Acts 17:11). I test the verses of the New Testament by comparing them to what is written in the Tanakh, just as the New Testament authors command. This test is virtually never used by Christians or counterfeit Messianics. Therefore, my use of discernment to determine what may be incorrect within the New Testament is not only Scriptural, but is also commanded from within the very pages of the New Testament. Since I follow the command to test the apostolic writings using the Tanakh, I am more of a "New Testament believer" than my Constantinian Christian opponents! I ACTUALLY FOLLOW THE NEW TESTAMENT MORE CLOSELY THAN THOSE WHO DISAGREE WITH ME! This is further investigated in the article I previously mentioned, which discusses what is TRUE "Holy" Scripture.
Christians and counterfeit Messianics need to realize that their faith in the infallibility of the New Testament writings is actually faith in the infallibility of the men who collected, copied (edited), and canonized the New Testament manuscripts! When a Christian states a belief that the New Testament is the "Word of God", what they are actually naively accepting as perfect are imperfect men that history proves were VERY anti-Hebraic, anti-Semitic, steeped in the mystery sun-god religions, and politically motivated! Christians are not even aware of what their faith ACTUALLY involves or in whom their faith is ACTUALLY placed! They never stop to consider what they are ACTUALLY basing their "faith" upon! And of course, very few Christians have the slightest idea of what REALLY happened during those crucial first 4 centuries following the death of Yeshua. Worst still, most Christians don't care!
I am NOT saying the New Testament is bogus. Many falsely accuse me of that since they cannot refute my arguments using the Tanakh or scholarship! All I am saying is that even if the corruption exists in a small percentage of the overall number of passages it is unwise to ultimately base one's faith on a collection of writings PROVEN to be corrupt or questionable in various areas, which were collected by men that are also proven to be corrupt. I am also not implying widespread corruption. It doesn't take much cyanide or cobra venom to kill. One drop is all that is needed. Likewise, a scribal "edit" of just a few carefully placed words can totally poison truth, particularly when those words are contained in a handful of crucial verses. As stated previously, this problem is multiplied when otherwise correct text within the Greek manuscripts is mistranslated! It is for this reason one should follow the New Testament authors' pleas to ALWAYS base one's faith ULTIMATELY on what is written in the Tanakh by verifying that their interpretation of New Testament passages has Tanakh support.
It is also unwise to assume English versions of the Bible to be the "Word of God", which are based upon biased renderings from the available Hebrew and Greek manuscripts. Bias does not necessarily imply intent to corrupt. It is simply a fact of human nature that bias will inevitably enter into a translation when the translator must choose between various legitimate renderings of a Hebrew or Greek word. Of course, virtually all Bibles used by Christians were translated by individuals that were biased against the Hebraic world view. I discuss some of this in an article on the canonization of the New Testament.
I list one book which discusses the issue of scribal manipulation of the New Testament writings. The book is The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture, by Bart D. Erhman, which I briefly mentioned earlier. There are LOTS of other books which prove that the New Testament is most certainly NOT infallible. I will not spend time proving what many scholarly publications already do. If others wish to believe the New Testament is the "perfect and infallible Word of God" and refuse to verify their stated belief, so be it. There are many who prefer ignorance over truth because truth is too much for them to accept. Such is the case of those who wish to believe the New Testament writings are totally free from error.
Now I will address the common argument regarding the Greek word found in the Septuagint, which is properly rendered as "virgin"; however, the Greek word, parthenos, is not limited to always meaning "virgin". Briefly, there are a few points one must consider:
First, although I personally consider the Septuagint to be a very accurate translation, it is nonetheless a fact that the Septuagint IS a translation. The situation is no different than an English translation from the Hebrew that all in the English speaking world carry. Only the most grotesquely deceived will dare claim the English Bible is "perfect". Most serious students of Scripture reference Hebrew Lexicons to verify and clarify their English translations of the Hebrew Scriptures. So, like your English version of the Tanakh (Older Testament), the Septuagint is a translation from the original Hebrew, and like your English version, it is NOT perfect.
The Septuagint was completed in the Hellenistic hotbed of Alexandria Egypt. Though traditionally said to have been translated by 70 or 72 Jewish scholars at the request of Ptolemy II, the information I found suggests that most scholars believe that only the Pentateuch (Torah, or Genesis - Deuteronomy) was completed in the early part of the 3rd century BCE and that the remaining books were translated in the next two centuries. Obviously, Isaiah is part of this later addition to the Septuagint. I do feel the Septuagint is an excellent source for study and even quoting; however, when conflicts arise between the Greek of the Septuagint and the Hebrew of the more widely accepted Hebrew Scriptures, precedence should always be given to the Hebrew.
HOWEVER, the question then becomes "what Hebrew translation?" My studies suggest that Hebrew scribes corrupted the widely accepted "Masoretic Text" of the Hebrew Scripture as part of their efforts to reduce the amount of Scriptural proofs showing Yeshua to be Messiah. The Septuagint is almost 1000 years older than the Masoretic text and is probably based upon a DIFFERENT Hebrew text that is NOT the one composed by the Masorites almost a millennia later. Please refer to this link for more information regarding the comparison between the Septuagint and the Masoretic Hebrew texts.
It is unlikely that Yeshua or the other writers of the New Testament used the Septuagint as the final Word, but they probably DID use it in their ministries since Greek was such a common language. It is most likely that they used whatever Hebrew text existed at that time for their personal studies, which was NOT the Masoretic Hebrew text. Frankly my opinion of the Septuagint has change dramatically since my first draft of this article. I was once strongly opposed to it; but after discovering information proving errors (intentional?) in the relatively modern Masoretic text, I now have almost as much confidence in the Greek Septuagint as I do the Masoretic Hebrew version. However, the reason for my confidence is NOT due to the fact that LXX (Septuagint) is Greek, but is instead due to the fact that whatever Hebrew text was used for the LXX translation is DEFINITELY more accurate and error free than the Masoretic version that was commissioned and put together by Rabbis who were vehemently anti-Yeshua. Remember, however, that the "word games" is NOT the deciding factor in this "virgin birth" discussion; therefore, it doesn't matter which version/translation we consult.
Even if the proper translation of the Hebrew word is "virgin", it still does not prove that a literal virgin was intended. If one marries a virgin and she conceives after the first act of sexual union, it can legitimately be stated that a virgin conceived. Of course, AFTER the union she would no longer be a virgin. The term is interpreted in the strictest possible sense by Constantinian Christians when, in fact, it should be interpreted based upon how the original writer intended, which of course we cannot possibly know. It could very well have been a young maiden, which is the rendering from the Hebrew.
Finally, regardless of whether or not it is rendered as virgin or maiden, it still is firmly lodged in the same context of Scripture; therefore, the context still demands the prophecy be applied as shown, which was as a sign to AHAZ. Ahaz was long dead (about 700 years) before Yeshua was born. As stated earlier, a sign to a dead man will not do much good.
Most will immediately think of the passages in the New Testament that refer to the child (Yeshua) being conceived "of the Holy Ghost", I will briefly address that issue.
First, as already mentioned, there is legitimate debate regarding the authenticity of the accounts recorded in the early chapters of Matthew and Luke; so, the alleged fulfillment of Isaiah 7:14 in those Gospels may be an invention of the early Constantinian minded Greek and Roman scribes. The clear context of Isaiah 7:14, as just discussed, does not even hint at any sort of Messianic fulfillment. Also, the Word (Scriptures) is Spirit; therefore, being conceived of the Holy Spirit could just as well mean being conceived as prophesied or planned by YHVH through His Word. The plan of YHVH always involved the birth of THE Messiah; therefore, being conceived (planned) by the Holy Ghost could just as easily mean being planned by the Creator and manifested at that time.
Next I wish to address a common argument put forth by those promoting the virgin birth as they attempt to wiggle free from the CLEAR contextual facts previously presented. This argument is among one of the clearest examples of panicked desperation that one can find within traditional Christian Biblical interpretations.
You know that feeling you get when a friend makes a fool of themselves in public? You know, that feeling of embarrassment for them? Well, the typical traditional Christian argument I'm about to discuss is like that. It is such an obvious act of desperation that it actually makes me feel embarrassed for the Christian and Messianic leaders who are forced to utilize it as they find themselves with no place to hide from the UNAMBIGUOUS PROOFS found within the context of Isaiah 7 and 8. The argument to which I refer is the use of Genesis 3:15 by those promoting the virgin birth of the passage, which refers to the "seed" of woman. They frantically attempt to promote the teaching that within this verse there is a mysterious code, which differentiates between the "seed" of man and the "seed" of woman, that lay dormant for 4000 years then reappeared to apply to Mary, the mother of Yeshua. Below I show 4 separate translations of the verse.
Primarily as a result of the KJV translation, traditional Christians stretch, twist, and bend the words "seed" and "woman" into being some sort of mysterious code-match of words to imply Messiah is here shown to be of the "seed" of Mary instead of the "seed" of Joseph. Therefore, they attempt to force the argument that the CLEAR and OFTEN STATED crucial requirement that Messiah be LITERALLY of the offspring of King David THROUGH HIS FATHER, which I will discuss shortly, is somehow overruled by this verse. Well, this is one of the best examples of shameless context shredding that one can point to within traditional Christianity and is, indeed, an embarrassingly desperate teaching. In this case, the context being shredded is the entire Bible, which shows Messiah to be the LITERAL offspring of King David! Ok, let's look at the verses.
First, the word rendered as "seed" or "offspring" is the Hebrew word zera. The Enhanced Strong's Lexicon shows the word (Strong's #2233) occurs 229 times in the Hebrew Scriptures. Note that it is shown to be a MASCULINE noun. The Authorized Version (KJV) translates it as seed 221 times, child twice, and also other times as carnally, fruitful, seedtime, and sowing time. Strong's also shows the meaning as:
The Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament presents the following information regarding the Hebrew word, zera. As you read this note how the primary meaning most definitely implies it is the MALE reproductive function that dominates the definition, NOT the female.
zera: Sowing, seed, offspring. This noun is used 224 times. Its usages fall into four basic semantic categories:1. The time of sowing, seedtime; 2. the seed as that which is scattered or as the product of what is sown; 3. the seed as semen and 4. the Seed as the offspring in the promised line of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob or in other groups separate from this people of promise.
Harris, R. L. (1999, c1980). Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament (Pages 252-253). Chicago: Moody Press.
Finally, within the definition found in the Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains : Hebrew (Old Testament) we find the following:
(zera): n.masc.; = Str 2233; TWOT 582a - 1. LN 3.35 seed, i.e., a kernel part of a plant that propagates the species (Ge 1:11); 2. LN 8.70-8.77 semen, i.e., the product of the male genitals (Lev 15:16); 3. LN 9.41-9.45 child, i.e., one that is the direct offspring (Ge 15:3); 4. LN 10.14-10.48 offspring, descendant, posterity, i.e., one that is related more than one generation removed (Ge 3:15); 5. LN 11.90-11.95 family, clan, i.e., an extended family group based on a common ancestor (Ge 19:32, 34); 6. LN 11.12-11.54 race, i.e., a very extended family line based on many different criteria, with a focus on religious ties (Ezr 9:2)
Swanson, J. (1997). Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains : Hebrew (Old Testament) (HGK2446). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
I realize the information just presented may seem like overkill; however, the main point shown is that the term simply means offspring. Also, since the term is masculine, distorting it to refer to the "seed" (egg) of Mary instead of the "seed" (sperm) of Joseph is proven to be nothing more than hopeless desperation by those unwilling to release their embrace of error. There are numerous clear references to specific application of the term to male seminal emission. However, there are no references to it that I found where it refers specifically to the female egg; yet, this is precisely what panicky traditional Christian and counterfeit Messianic promoters of error implicitly and/or explicitly present as the meaning in Genesis 3:15. However, the dominant meaning is simply offspring; thus, seed means offspring and is correctly translated as such in many versions of Scripture.
Genesis 3:15 is simply saying that from Eve's offspring (the human race, NOT some code word for Mary's egg) would arise one or possibly many (Messiah or the "Israel" of God) that will crush the head of Satan. There is nothing mysterious or mystical at all about the clear and simple meaning of the verse. All mankind are offspring of Adam and Eve. The idea promoted by the virgin birth adherents, which is that Genesis 3:15 represents some mysterious "code" that negates ALL the subsequent prophecies showing that Messiah would be a descendant of King David through his father, is an outlandish assumption and is shown to be an unparalleled attempt at deception by traditional Christian leaders. Also, since Eve's offspring are HUMAN BEINGS, the "God in the flesh" teaching is further weakend, since IF Messiah is "God", he is NOT human, despite the blaphemous verbal gymnastics conducted by those who promote a person can be both fully human and fully God. This particular misrepresentation of Scripture (Gen. 3:15) is one of those false doctrines for which I show little patience towards its promoters due to their intent to demolish the clear Scriptural context just so they can salvage a primary doctrine they promote.
The Scriptures VERY CLEARLY prove in case after case after case, that one's genealogy is traced THROUGH THE FATHER. It is for this reason, for instance, that we read in the Tanakh books of Kings and Chronicles instances of where the sons of Kings were killed by wicked rulers in an attempt to prevent the seed of David from continuing on as kings of Judah and where God allowed the sons of various wicked men to be killed in order to destroy their seed (eliminate their future offspring). Obed, the Israeli grandfather of King David, had Ruth, a Moabite, as his mother. Similarly, Rahab the non-Israelite harlot is an ancestor of Messiah. However, since it is ALWAYS the father that determines one's Biblical heritage, the non-Israelite status of these women is meaningless.
Note also that the ancestry of Yeshua shown in Matthew and Luke is dominated by men with only a few passing references to women. Some attempt to promote the totally false teaching that the Luke genealogy was for Mary, despite the fact the verses in Luke's gospel very clearly carry them through to Joseph. Frankly, the insistence that the Luke genealogy applies to Mary is one of the more obvious examples of outright deception by Christians and counterfeit Messianics as they attempt to "prove" their false godly procreation teaching and should be noted as clear evidence of how far some will go in their attempts to promote blatant falsehood.
So, why do Constantinian Christians and counterfeit Messianics attempt to misrepresent the clear reading of the genealogy accounts of Matthew and Luke? Answer: Because of the obvious error presented in New Testament writings regarding the ancestry of Messiah Yeshua. The deceivers frantically attempt to side-step the VERY CLEAR fact that the differing genealogies shown in the Matthew and Luke gospel accounts PROVE the gospels to be corrupt!
There is no way around the fact that Matthew and Luke cannot both be correct in their presentation of different records of Yeshua's ancestry. However, instead of admitting the obvious truth that these verses prove the New Testament writings are NOT infallible, Christians and Messianics engage in hopeless verbal gymnastics in an attempt to cover up the fact that the differences provide strong evidence of scribal manipulation. They, of course, wish to cover up the genealogical discrepancy and hope their followers will not notice the glaring contradiction. Their primary strategy used to explain away the obvious error is shameless deception. They promote the devious and totally baseless concept that one account is for Joseph and the other for Mary, despite the fact both accounts list Joseph as the focus of the genealogical record. Sadly, the majority of Christians and Messianics swallow the lie hook, line, and sinker as they do numerous other obvious false teachings.
Some will argue that since Judaism teaches one's ethic heritage is derived from the mother this proves Messiah did not have to have an earthly father. So, despite the anti-Judaic stance of Christianity, Rabbinic traditions are sometimes used in a twisted attempt to support Yeshua's deity. [First, it should be noted how odd it is that Christianity adopts "Judaic" principles when those principles support them and condemns them as "works of the law" when they do not.]
The Rabbinic tradition that one's Jewishness is transferred through the mother actually originated as a ruling of Judaic authorities in the early centuries. It was created in reaction to the large numbers of Jewish women that produced offspring resulting from rape by Romans and other non-Jews. Of course abortion was not an issue as it is today; therefore, the mother would be shouldered with the responsibility of raising and training the child. Such a task would have been extremely difficult had she and/or the child been ostracized by the Jewish community. The Orthodox Jewish community can be EXTREMELY harsh towards those that dare break from tradition. The Jewish authorities (sanhedrin) sympathetically recognized the tremendous burden of both mother and child and thus ruled that the child was fully Jewish despite the fact the father was not. It was intended to be an inclusive and well-meaning opinion of the Sages that allowed the children of such brutality to be counted as fully Jewish - with all rights and privileges - and thus accepted and supported by the community. The matriarchal (vs. Patriarchal) Jewish pedigree is NOT based upon Scripture, though the Rabbis prospect for Scriptural support for it. Unfortunately, what was intended as an INCLUSIVE ruling has become EXCLUSIVE; thus, even to this day one is "Jewish" only if his/her mother is Jewish despite the fact Scripture presents an opposite "ruling". Bottom line: THE MATRIARCHAL PEDIGREE CONCEPT IS RABBINIC. IT IS NOT SCRIPTURAL and represents one of many Rabbinic rulings ("traditions of men") that have become "Torah" for Judaism as Rabbinic law supercedes and/or appends YHVH's laws.
The examples are numerous that prove beyond doubt that one's ancestry is determined by who fathered them. The pedigree is determined by the father, NOT the mother. Therefore, with this in mind the virgin birth becomes a SERIOUS issue, because if Yeshua the Messiah did NOT have an earthly father he is NOT the Messiah! Thus, the Beastly religious system represented by the great harlot of Rome has shown her antichrist (usurper of Messiah, replacement Messiah) foundations again by removing from the Messianic resume of Yeshua THE primary demand for Messiah, which is that he be LITERALLY an offspring of King David through his father. Thus, if the virgin birth is true, Yeshua is not the Messiah!
Friend, this is a MAJOR point! IF YAHSHUA DID NOT HAVE AN EARTHLY FATHER WITH DAVID AS AN ANCESTOR, YAHSHUA IS NOT MESSIAH! Why Christian and counterfeit Messianic leaders dismiss this important point is a cause for deep concern and wonder by me, because what they are actually dismissing is THE primary test used for determining if one is - or is not - the Messiah!
Another relevant issue of importance is the "timing" of Yeshua's birth, which relates to the clear 70 weeks prophecy of Daniel 9:24-27 and the absolute necessity of the Messiah arriving at that precise time in history. Mark alludes to this "timing" in Mark 1:15:
15 And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.
The King James Version, (Cambridge: Cambridge) 1769.
In terms of Yeshua being Messiah, Mary's virginity - indeed the entire birth episode - should not (in my opinion) be an issue judged as redemptive. It is for this reason myself and others that disagree on this issue enjoy unhindered fellowship. However, in my opinion it DOES impact whether or not Yeshua is the Messiah. The ONLY crucial issue regarding his birth is whether or not he was a literal descendant of King David, which the genealogies from Matthew and Luke indicate as being the case IF - and ONLY if - Joseph was his father. The fact is, there is NOTHING in Scripture that REQUIRES a miraculous birth of Messiah but there is a LOT of of evidence that requires he be LITERALLY of the seed of David through his father.
As a final argument, ask yourself the following question: IF Messiah was born of a "virgin" with no earthly father, why is it so rarely mentioned in the New Testament? IF such an event occurred, it would have been an astounding miracle and frequently discussed! Yet, the New Testament authors virtually never even mention it! This fact alone makes its actual occurrence extremely unlikely.
I cannot accept something that is hardly even mentioned except for a few questionable verses in the early chapters of Matthew and Luke. It would have been a VERY big deal and would have been often mentioned within the pages of the New Testament if it is an important doctrine. The fact that it was NOT discussed in ANY of the examples in Acts, for example, where we read of the preaching and/or acceptance of the Gospel, proves to me it did not happen. Of course, there is also no mention of it in any of the epistles.
My friend, use common sense. Imagine if this happened today. Wouldn't such an event be on the front page of every newspaper in the world and the major topic of most news broadcasts? Such was also the case then.
The silence regarding the virgin birth of Yeshua within the pages of the New Testament strongly suggest it never occurred and that Yeshua was born just as all other human beings are born, AND THIS IN NO WAY DIMINISHES HIS BEING MESSIAH! Since his being Messiah is not dependant upon a "virgin birth", he is still very clearly the Messiah.
The unusual importance Christian leaders place on Yeshua's birth may be due to the importance that was placed on the birth of Tammuz, Mithra, and other "god in the flesh" saviors in the pagan religions from which the Constantinian religion of Christianity derived many of its doctrines. These same pagan religions ALL had godly procreation as a major theme; thus, Constantinian Christianity and counterfeit Messianism, which is actually repackaged Constantinian Christianity, exalts the alleged godly procreation in the birth of Messiah even though it is irrelevant to Messianic prophecy! The ONLY "demand" imposed upon Yeshua being a LITERAL "son" of God is the demand created from the pagan origins of the majority of Christian theology - the same origins from which the doctrine of the Trinity arose!
It is a matter of historical fact that there were MANY pagan, mystery religions that flourished during the time the "church fathers" canonized their "New" Testament "scripture". Mithraism was but one of those religions. Oh! Of course many of these were based in worship of a sun god. Guess where the church gets the idea for the halo or sun that surrounds the head of "jesus" and/or Mary in many artists renderings?
The pagan foundation of MANY aspects of Christianity is obvious; however, most Christians prefer to ignore it. Truth is too difficult or embarrassing for most Christians and counterfeit Messianics to accept.
History records that:
One source is quoted as saying that there were many mythological figures: Hercules, Osiris, Bacchus, Mithra, Hermes, Prometheus, Perseus and Horus who share a number of factors. All were believed to have:
Oddly, the concept of godly procreation is hinted at within Scripture; however, neither the "gods" nor the concept are presented in a positive light. We read in Genesis chapter 6 how the "sons of God" lusted for the "daughters of men" and cohabited with them. Though there is debate as to what the record truly signifies, many feel the relevant passages suggest angelic beings left their heavenly abode because of their lustful desires for earthly women. There are other apocryphal writings that support this - Enoch for instance. When one reads the passages in Genesis chapter 6 without allegorical interpretation, they seem to very directly refer to such mingling of angelic beings with humankind.
If one considers the fact that Adam and Eve were absolutely perfect in all physical respects, and that these earthly women were only a few generations from this perfection, it is conceivable that the appearances of the women of that time surpassed that of today's sexiest, most stunningly attractive women. They were probably unimaginably beautiful. Of course the men were probably also amazingly strong and handsome, and all lived astoundingly long lives. It is my personal opinion that the new body those that merit eternal life will be given after the resurrection will be of the same state of perfection that the Creator originally intended for his most exalted creation - mankind.
It was these "earth babes" that the angelic beings lusted for and with whom they possibly had sexual relations. Again, debate rages on this issue; however, the verses seem relatively straight forward. It is also from these unions that mighty men (superhuman offspring) were possibly born. These were, in a sense, sons of the "gods". My point is that the godly procreation of mythology is not as far-out and unscriptural as most may think. There may be some aspects of truth to the mythological stories of old, though the stories are distorted.
So, IF such was the case, then we can indeed point to a form of godly procreation. The "gods" were the heavenly beings, and the "virgins" were the stunningly attractive women of the earth. But, does Scripture record this as being a good thing? NO! In fact, it was largely as a result of these abominable unions that God ultimately destroyed the earth with a great flood! Thus, what Scripture CLEARLY implies to be a grotesque abomination - cohabitation between heavenly and earthly beings - Christianity teaches as a major doctrine and exalts! Worse still, Christianity, following its pagan Babylonish origins, has the very Creator, Himself, partaking in this sexual union with woman!
It is notable that two of the only religions that do not have a virgin birth account is the true Monothestic Messianic faith (not to be confused with counterfeit Messianism) and Judaism of which the true Monotheistic Messianic faith was a sect.
For centuries, since the dawn of time, Satan worked tirelessly to promote his false, Babylonish religion. He finally succeeded with his final work - the Beastly religious system or great harlot that seduces and spiritually fornicates with much of the world's population - Constantinian Christianity. It is with this grand achievement - the spiritual great harlot - that Satan may finally obtain the worship he has always desired. Using Constantinian Christianity, Satan has pulled many people away from worship of the TRUE God and the man chosen by God - Messiah Yeshua.
I am dismayed as I consider the way Traditional Christians focus so much on the "virgin birth" of Yeshua, even to the point of making it a foundational and often redemptive teaching. Of course, this is done despite the fact there is hardly a mention of it in the entire New Testament and absolutely ZERO indication that it was considered a necessary belief! Christianity even "christianized" an unscriptural holiday to commemorate it (Christmas), which is undoubtedly a celebration of entirely pagan origins.
Scripturally speaking, the birth of Yeshua - at best - ranks a distant third among miraculous births! Adam was fashioned from dirt, and Eve from Adam's rib! Neither of them even had a mother! If a miraculous birth is a primary ingredient in determining who is the "son of God", the female, Eve, is more of a "son" than Yeshua! Indeed, if miraculous birth is a primary ingredient for determining one's "deity", then Adam and Eve have a stronger claim to being "God" than does Yeshua!
Our eternal life is not determined by Yeshua's birth. It is determined by his selfless death as payment for the lawful penalty of eternal death we deserve because of our sins. It is his death and subsequent resurrection by His God and ours that gives us hope for a future resurrection to eternal life in the Kingdom to come.