...continued from The Ideal Israelite.
If we could picture ourselves as present at the Sermon on the Mount, would any of us have wondered who the speaker's father was?
The doctrine of the Virgin Birth actually posits just such a carnal and ludicrous scenario - the disciples and followers of Jesus discussing not only the question of his paternal ancestry but also the state of his mother's hymen!
Unlike certain church fathers, whose mental meanderings through Mary's reproductive system would today necessitate speedy intervention of the psychological sort, the minds of the followers of Jesus were of a decidedly loftier order, 'ignorant' fishermen though some of them were.
These men and women were drawn to Jesus because of his life-giving teachings and the values and principles he embodied - through his 'grace and truth.' It was only after his death that the necessity arose to justify the Apostles' claims for his 'messiahship.'
The so-called 'infancy narratives' were written for a single, compelling purpose - to demonstrate Jesus of Nazareth's right to be designated a son of David, a key criterion that the 'anointed' one was supposed to satisfy on his appearance. They were not written to record a 'virgin birth.' Indeed, such a pagan and preposterous concept would have been profoundly foreign and detestable to Jesus and all other Israelites.
Matthew wrote his genealogy to prove that Jesus was not the son of Joseph because if it had been discovered that Joseph was a descendant of Jeconiah, then the Apostles' claims that Jesus was the 'Messiah' and the 'King of Israel' could have been challenged.
Luke was also able to perceive that the Apostles' claims for the 'messiahship' of Jesus must not be exposed to ridicule and his genealogy not only states that Joseph was not the father but also goes one step further and provides the name of the biological father of Jesus. [See Virgin Birth and Incarnation category for an exhaustive analysis of the Infancy Narratives]
We have shown in The Ideal Israelite that, with the advantage of hindsight, the writers of the New Testament were able to realise just how perfectly Jesus had fulfilled Messianic expectations in terms of his values, principles and moral supremacy. Nevertheless, they still thought it necessary to stress his 'physical' descent from David:
"...concerning his Son, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh..." Note that the very next verse tells us the point in time at which Jesus was declared to be the Son of God "...who was declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead; even Jesus Christ our Lord." (Rom 1:3-4)
" Of this man's seed hath God according to his promise raised unto Israel a Saviour, Jesus." (Acts 13:23)
"Hath not the scripture said that the Christ cometh of the seed of David, and from Bethlehem, the village where David was?" (John 7:42)
"Remember Jesus Christ, risen from the dead, of the seed of David, according to my gospel." (2 Tim 2:8)
Only through artificial contrivance and theological sophistry have scholars and ecclesiastics been able to justify ignoring the clear intent of the above passages and, despite Luke's evidence to the contrary, continue to claim that Jesus was descended from David through his mother Mary.
The Christian religion should not be confused with Christian faith and Christian living for they are as apart as the poles. As it exists now, the Christian religion is merely the redressing of paganism with a misleading nom-de-plume in order that homage may be paid to old pagan gods, which worship would rightfully be denied them if they were recognised as such. The pinnacle of the subtlety of the serpent.
The Achilles Heel of all the 'divinity' teachings of the Christian churches is the doctrine of the Virgin Birth. Notwithstanding its current status in the different sects of Christendom, it is the pillar upon which the entire structure rests.
Finding it necessary to explain away the perceived 'embarrassing' birth of Jesus by promulgating this false teaching, the early Graeco-Roman fathers subsequently encountered problems which could only be addressed and answered by promulgating yet more false teachings.
In the case of the Roman Catholic Church, these 'cover' stories continued all the way to the 19th Century and the adoption of the doctrine of the 'Immaculate Conception' which teaches that Mary was conceived without spot or stain of Original Sin.