A reader has sent in this website asking that it be looked into.
The concern is that Walls of Jericho is denying the Virgin Birth. As I look, it’s denying a lot more, but it centers on the Virgin Birth. For an example of the deeper heresy involved, simply check this paragraph:
[Jesus was a normal man, chosen from among his fellows by God. This was the whole issue. He did not meet with the approval of the priestly establishment of his time. To them he was a malcontent, a man who stirred up the people. The priests desired a messiah made in their own image and likeness. They did not want God’s messiah; they wanted their own — fashioned according to their own delusions of grandeur. It was only natural that they should accuse Jesus of being deluded.]
I hope many readers recognize the adoptionist heresy in which Jesus is not God incarnate. Instead, he is a man chosen to be the vessel that God would use amongst many other possibilities. If there is no virgin birth, then it would seem likely that Jesus is not fully deity. If there is a virgin birth though, then that certainly increases the likelihood that he is.
I was honestly expecting a lot more, but when I went to the site, what I saw is scant and hardly convincing. Also, real sources on the virgin birth are not used.
Let’s look at the first Scripture cited. It’s Luke 3:23:
23Now Jesus himself was about thirty years old when he began his ministry. He was the son, so it was thought, of Joseph,
Which this tells us the information we need. In the eyes of the world, Jesus was seen as the son of Joseph. (One can imagine the thoughts that would go through the minds of the average populace had Mary said that Jesus was virgin born. It could be the exact same as went through the mind of Joseph. (Yeah, right. Granted, that’s not what he said but considering he was wanting to give her a certificate of divorce, it’s likely he was believing a virgin birth account even if she told him.)
Instead, Jesus was presented as the son of Joseph, which makes great sense in a Hebrew society that placed stock on parentage and family.
Our next verses will come from the gospel of John:
40Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, was one of the two who heard what John had said and who had followed Jesus. 41The first thing Andrew did was to find his brother Simon and tell him, “We have found the Messiah” (that is, the Christ).
45Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.”
49Then Nathanael declared, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel.”
One wonders why the 49th verse is included. Naturally, Jesus in social circles as was said would be seen to be the son of Joseph. This isn’t a problem for the virgin birth. If he’s thought of as the Son of God, it does point to a divine status though. This passage is to be understood much like the last one was.
Our next look involves Luke 2 and the passages of Jesus being left behind in Jerusalem. We will put the two relevant verses although six are given. Anyone can go to the site though if they think I am taking things out of context.
49“Why were you searching for me?” he asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?” 50But they did not understand what he was saying to them.
Again, I wonder why this is included. All this tells us is that they didn’t understand what he was saying. There is no reply of Joseph saying “Son, this isn’t my house.”
John 7:1-5 and Mark 3 with Jesus’s own family being confused about him are cited next. What does this show though? All it shows is they thought he was crazy. While we would think a virgin birth would be talked about often, it’s not likely that it really was. Even if that had been what was told, could it be the brothers would not grasp what that meant?
The last one to be addressed will be Mark 6:
1Jesus left there and went to his hometown, accompanied by his disciples. 2When the Sabbath came, he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed. “Where did this man get these things?” they asked. “What’s this wisdom that has been given him, that he even does miracles! 3Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him.
4Jesus said to them, “Only in his hometown, among his relatives and in his own house is a prophet without honor.”
Which shows Jesus had a house where his family lived. Somehow, this is supposed to argue against the virgin birth?
As we go on, we are told that only two gospels mention this virgin birth. I wonder if Walls of Jericho is skeptical though of the Sermon on the Mount. Only two gospels mention that also and it happens to be the same two gospels.
There is also the argument that no other sources mention the virgin birth in the NT. So what? They don’t mention the Sermon on the Mount or the feeding of the 5,000 and the latter is in all four gospels. Acts is interested in the ministry of the apostles and the epistles are the outworking of doctrine based on the life of the historical Jesus. None of them would need the virgin birth.
We will look at other passages tomorrow.