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December 3rd - Emily Silver

Hey everybody! My name is Emily Silver, and I am a senior at UK studying human health science with a neuro minor, and hoping to attend PA school in Spring 2025! I have served on several leadership teams during my time at the BCM, but this year you’ll find me serving primarily on Thursday nights co-leading a study through Deuteronomy with the one and only Brennan Graham! Today’s study will be using ESV.

This morning we are going to be diving into a couple of promises that God made to his people: that a savior would be born of a virgin, and that he would be born in Bethlehem. I am going to start at the end by talking about the location of the birth of Jesus and then circling back to the virgin birth a little later!

As a quick recap, Jesus was born in a manger in Bethlehem, because there was no room for him and his family at the nearby inn (Matthew 2:1). His birth in Bethlehem was not a coincidence though. After all, approximately 700 years before it happened, Micah prophesied that a ruler would come from Bethlehem (Micah 5:2). Fulfilling the Old Testament prophecy, Jesus was born in a quiet manger in Bethlehem and had come to be the savior that the Lord’s people were all waiting for.

Now, let's dive into the virgin birth! Throughout the book of Isaiah, a story is told of Israel’s constant disobedience and they are warned of their impending judgment. To their benefit though, the story doesn’t stop there and Isaiah also offers a message of intense hope to them as they are told of the savior that will soon be coming. “Therefore, the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel” (Isaiah 7:14). I can imagine that this was hard to comprehend at the time. After all, how could a virgin give birth?

Mary had the same question 700 years later. She was engaged to Joseph when an angel appeared to her and told her that she would conceive and give birth to a son. Confused, she asked the angel how she could give birth if she was a virgin. He replied “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the most high will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be called holy- the son of God” (Luke 1:25). Nine months later, Isaiah’s prophecy was fulfilled and Jesus was born of a virgin (Luke 2:7).

We aren't stopping there though. We are going to dive a little bit deeper into why it was so important that Jesus was born of a virgin. The obvious reason would be because that is what was prophesied in Isaiah, but that isn’t the whole picture. John 6:69 describes Jesus as “The Holy One of God” and He couldn’t have been born solely of Joseph and Mary while still being holy in this way. Because He was not born of Joseph, He did not inherit Joseph’s sinful nature and instead, the physical body he received from Mary was filled with his own Godly and eternal nature. His human body from Mary and His Holy nature allowed Jesus to live a perfect life and become a sufficient sacrifice to die on the cross and save humanity from the grasp of their sin. The virgin birth also represents the work of God in our lives. Just like Mary relied on the Lord to become pregnant and birth the savior of the world, we must rely on him to provide us salvation and eternal life.

This is in no way an extensive study of the birth of Jesus and the circumstances surrounding it, but I think it does leave some room for reflection for all of us. It is easy to breeze through the Christmas story this time of year (I am guilty of this myself!) but this time, I challenge you all to spend some time contemplating the importance of how Jesus entered the world! His birth was a miracle, and His life provided us the opportunity to spend eternity with him in heaven!

Reflection Questions:

  1. Are there any other passages that you can think of in the Old Testament that predicted the coming of a savior?

  2. How does Jesus being born of a virgin set him apart? How does this impact his role as the Son of God? How does this impact his humanity?

  3. How can we live differently after being reminded that like Mary, we must fully rely on the Lord, even when circumstances seem unfavorable?

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1 Comment

Joshua Donahue
Joshua Donahue
Dec 19, 2023
  1. Genesis 3

  2. No one else has been born of a virgin! Jesus being without man's original sin and with God's perfection created a perfect yet fully intact blend of humanity and holiness, allowing Him to feel every emotion and temptation but never succumbing to it in sin.

  3. Know God loves to do the impossible. He can and will work if we give Him our faith and trust in us. The first step is letting Him handle your worst problems, and the hardest is letting Him handle your easiest.

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