Virgin Birth

There is a very popular thinking among many professing Evangelical Christians that the Virgin Birth of Christ was necessary in order to produce a spotless Redeemer who would be the perfect and all sufficient sacrifice for our redemption. This theory says that Christ was sinless only because He had no earthly, physical father. However, that thinking also makes the assumption that God, for whatever reason, was incapable of producing a sinless person using the DNA of a sinful male. But this same theory also presupposes that it was within God’s power to produce a sinless person using the genetic contribution of a sinful female. Or, does this theory say that God could have made a sinless person using only one but not a combination of both human male and female genetic contributions? Either way does that thinking make any sense?

People often confuse the Virgin Birth of Jesus with the Immaculate Conception of Mary and they are not the same thing. The Immaculate Conception has nothing to do with the Lord Jesus Christ and is not found in Scripture. It is a Roman Catholic teaching that Jesus’ mother, Mary, was born without original sin in order to be a fit and qualified vehicle for the coming of Christ. One problem with that theory is the fact that Mary calls God her Savior (Luke 1:47) which indicates she believed she needed salvation, and the need of salvation presupposes the existence of sin. In other words, if she was without sin, she wouldn’t have needed a Savior.

There was a perfectly understandable necessity for the Virgin Birth of Christ that had nothing to do with the Lord’s redemptive role. First, let’s understand the circumstances that were in place leading up to the Virgin Birth.

God established a covenant (an agreement) with King David of Israel, and one of the elements of that covenant was that all the legitimate rulers of the Nation would be David’s descendants. “When your days are complete and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your descendant after you, who will come forth from you, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever” (2 Sam. 7:12-13). (Take note of the fact that the throne for Israel is an earthly and eternal throne.) Several centuries later, the Southern Kingdom of Judah was still being ruled by the House of David while the Northern Kingdom of Israel had been ruled by a variety of kings and several royal dynasties.

In about the eighth century BC, the Davidic ruler in the South was Jehoiachin and during those dark days of his very sort reign, the army of Babylon had lay siege to the kingdom’s capital of Jerusalem. It was King Jehoiachin who finally surrendered Jerusalem to the Babylonian ruler, Nebuchadnezzer. Jehoiachin was a scant eighteen years of age at the time and had only been king for a scant three months. As a result of this cowardly and diabolical act, the sacred and holy Temple was looted by the Babylonians, desecrated, robbed, violated, and ruined. All the gold was taken and these Gentiles rendered the building complex unclean, unholy, and disqualified for any sacred service.

Because Jehoiachin was held responsible for this tragedy, God issued a curse upon him that the Prophet Jeremiah recorded. He would be dragged off to captivity and never see his homeland again. Calling him Coniah, Jeremiah further wrote, “Is this man Coniah a despised, shattered jar? Or is he an undesirable vessel? Why have he and his descendants been hurled out and cast into a land that they had not known? O land, land, land, hear the word of the LORD! ‘Thus says the LORD, write this man down childless, a man who will not prosper in his days; for no man of his descendants will prosper sitting on the throne of David or ruling again in Judah’” (Jer. 22:28-30). If this curse was to be carried out as written, it would seem that Israel could never have a future king. The rulers who came from the House of David have now been cursed to never sit upon David’s throne again. Was this the end of the Davidic line? No!

You can trace the royal genealogy from David through Solomon (Mt. 1:6) all the way down to Joseph, the husband of Mary (Mt. 1:16). In the middle of this list of Judean kings is the name of King Coniah (Mt. 1:11) which means that Joseph was in the Davidic line but was part of this curse of Coniah. But Jesus was virgin born and, as a result, wasn’t physically related to Joseph, but by being the carpenter’s legal son, Jesus inherited the royal title. Being the physical son of Mary, He also inherited the royal blood of David because Mary’s genealogy, given in Luke chapter three, indicated that she also came from King David but through a different son, Nathan, who was not involved in the curse. Hence, Jesus was given the royal title through Joseph and the royal blood through Mary and He by-passed the curse of Coniah making Him the only qualified ruler of Israel.

The angel Gabriel spoke to Mary and explained several truths concerning her coming Son. “He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David” (Luke 1:32). The Throne of David was an earthly throne over a single Nation that was composed of God’s chosen people. For nearly five centuries, the Israelites had not had a qualified person to be their king, that is, until now. When the Wisemen came from the east, they came seeking, “The King of the Jews,” and that’s what Jesus is. There will still come a day when He will reign over the Nation as the Davidic ruler of God’s people.