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Elkmont Baptist Church
The Need for a Virgin Birth
May God bless you all!
Since it is the Christmas season, I will answer the following two questions:
In what sense is Isaiah 53 yet to be fulfilled, and why did it have to be a "virgin" birth?
First, how is Isaiah 53 yet to be fulfilled? Isaiah verses 53:1-9 are all clearly regarding the first coming, and specifically, Christ's calling to the cross. Even the first half of verse 10 is declaring the mission God had outlined for Jesus - that of being smitten on our behalf to pay for our sins. The last three verses of Isaiah 53 are as follows:
Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put
to grief: when thou shalt
make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see
seed, he shall prolong
and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul,
shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant
justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him
with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
- Isaiah 53:10-12
Where it starts in verse 10, "he shall see
seed . . .", God looks forward from the
cross throughout the rest of world history into the millennial reign at all the fruit that the cross has produced - all of those who would be saved as a result of the work on the cross. "He shall prolong
days", I think speaks of the eternal reign yet to come.
"[A]nd the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand" - speaks to me of all the good God intended to fulfill - all of His promises - will be fully fulfilled in the hands (read that completed work) of Jesus Christ.
Verse 11 again speaks to those who were saved, are saved, and are yet to be saved because God looks at the work of the cross and is satisfied, and therefore, justifies those who come to the cross and are saved. Thus He bore the iniquities of many past, present, and those yet to be saved.
Finally, in verse 12, because of His work on the cross, He shall inherit a portion and a spoil. I suspect that verse is also past, present, and future as all the spoil is not yet realized until the last person is saved.
Second, why a virgin birth? God gives a promise to King Ahaz found in Isaiah 7:14: "Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel." This promise alone dictates that a virgin needs to conceive a child so that God will not become a liar. But we also know that a "blood curse" was pronounced on a wicked descendent king of King David, the one named Jeconiah. We find in Jeremiah 22:30: "Thus saith the LORD, Write ye this man childless, a man
shall not prosper in his days: for no man of his seed shall
prosper, sitting upon the throne of David, and ruling any more in Judah." So the child to be born of the royal line of David could not be born of that seed - of which Joseph is a scion. We know, of course, that Mary is of the seed of the second son of David and Bathsheba; and therefore, not of the royal line, but of the line of David nonetheless.
But the greatest reason for me is that Jesus is both God and man. Man sinned and man must pay the penalty for sin. Yet man in his sinful state would never be able to keep all the law and thus be worthy to fulfill the righteous demands of God for sin's penalty. This dilemma puts man in a serious position - that of not being able to pay for his sins - ever. Only God is able to remain sinless and meet the righteous demands for sin's penalty as God's justice dictates. Yet God cannot pay for man's sin - it has to be a man. Therefore, only the God-Man - Jesus the Christ - could do that. In addition, God has always wanted intimate fellowship with man - and again, in the form of a man - he can do that. It had to be a virgin to help meet the stringent demands of the law - that of being a perfect, sinless sacrifice; to meet the demands of God's promises to redeem man; and to meet the demands for God's own desires to have eternal fellowship with man. Christ had to be born of a virgin - and He was! Merry Christmas!