The Virgin Birth | 2

 

The Virgin Birth | 2

Introduction

Isaiah 7:14 gives us a promise of an alleged “virgin” birth.But what I think we'll see is that the context doesn't allow for such a conclusion.
  • in v.3 of chapter 7, Isaiah brings his first son with him to speak with Ahaz.
  • in v. 14, a “virgin” is promised a son, a sign to King Ahaz.
  • in chapter 8, we learn that it’s Isaiah’s son Mahershalalhashbaz, who is “called” “Immanuel.
This proves a few things:
  • it’s primarily a near prophecy of Isaiah’s son
  • Isaiah’s wife wasn’t a virgin because they already had a son (v.3), so the word can’t be translated “virgin.” The JPS TaNaKh renders the Hebrew word as “young woman” in English—which is contextually accurate.
  • if this has a double fulfillment, it shows that it isn’t prophetic of a virgin birth; and it shows that “Emmanuel” is an epithet. Jesus was named JESUS and NOT Immanuel in the Gospel accounts, meaning it’s not to be taken literally.
  • Jesus is “God with us” in the sense that God was in him, working miracles and speech through him (Acts 2:22).
Conclusion
 
If we don't consider the context, we're doomed to misunderstand the application of the text. In the context, the woman isn't a virgin, therefore the translators were wrong to change the word to "virgin"; in the context, Isaiah's son is called "Immanuel" (which, being interpreted is "God with us")--this is proof it's not a name but rather an epithet...otherwise, we would have to incarnations of God on the earth from two virgin births. The reality is more likely that the Virgin Birth is a myth that was inserted into the text rather than a historical event.