The Biology of Christmas

by | Dec 7, 2011 | Blogs, Fire in My Bones

The
virgin birth contradicts the laws of science. But our faith rests on the
miracle of the Incarnation.

My wife and I have four girls, and I was in the hospital
room for each birth. There was a normal amount of blood, but no serious
complications. Our oldest took forever to be born. Our second was in such a
hurry that we thought she might end up on the floor of a hospital hallway. Our
third tied her umbilical cord in knots in the womb. And our youngest calmly
slipped out as if to say: “OK, I’m born. What’s next?”

I had very little to do in the delivery room. My wife
was the hero. She sweated, strained, pushed and gasped for hours. I stroked her
arm a few times—and ate some doughnuts.

“The concept of a woman giving birth to a baby without
a man’s involvement is ludicrous to unbelievers. It contradicts all the laws of
biology.”

Normal births are amazing, whether they occur in
hospitals or homes or the back seats of taxis. But when I consider the birth of
Jesus, I’m in total awe—not just because of Mary and Joseph’s bumpy ride from
Nazareth, Mary’s lack of a doctor (and no anesthesia!) and the crudeness of the
manger, but also because of how Jesus was conceived. Mary was a virgin. Joseph,
the “father,” had nothing to do but stand in the background.

Secularists and liberal theologians have mocked the
virgin birth for centuries. Thomas Jefferson called it
a fable, while Episcopal heretic John Shelby Spong called
it an “entrance myth.” The concept of a woman giving birth to a baby without a
man’s involvement is ludicrous to unbelievers. It contradicts all the laws of
biology.

Yet Mary was not a scoffer. She asked the angel how she
would bear this child, and he said: “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the
power of the Most High will overshadow you” (Luke 1:35, NASB).

I would have asked for more scientific information.
(“Um, thanks Gabe, but how does this process of miraculous impregnation work?”)
But Mary didn’t quibble over details. She believed Gabriel’s announcement and
submitted to God in childlike faith.

The Greek word for “overshadow,” episkiazo, is a reference to the cloud of God’s presence that
materialized in Moses’ tabernacle. The Amplified Bible translates Luke 1:35 as:
He “will overshadow you like a shining cloud.” This same cloud hovered over the
ark of the covenant, led God’s people through the wilderness and filled
Solomon’s temple with shimmering shekinah glory.

Think about it. The same cloud of glory that caused
Moses’ face to shine hovered over a virgin and deposited a divine seed in her
womb. The God who hid behind a veil in the Old Testament clothed Himself in
human flesh in the New Testament.

The Incarnation cannot be explained in purely biological
terms. There was nothing sexual about it, yet Mary’s ovum was fertilized
without Joseph’s sperm. Divinity merged with humanity. Jesus, fully God and
fully man, began a nine-month gestation.

When the Savior was born, there was a normal amount of
blood, sweat and tears—because Mary was human. But this birth was surrounded
with wonder because Joseph was not the father. He came from a line of kings,
but his pedigree was not enough to save the human race. He could not contribute
to this miracle.

Doubters think Joseph got Mary pregnant out of wedlock.
If that were true, Christianity itself would be a lie because (1) if Jesus were
not born of a woman, He could not have identified with our sins fully; and (2) if
God were not His biological father, He could not have redeemed us.

This is the most glorious revelation of the nativity.
Bible teacher R.T. Kendall put it this way: “The virgin birth of Christ shows
that salvation can never come through human effort.” God performed this
science-defying miracle without our help. All we can do is receive His amazing
love and forgiveness.

We just stand there in awe. As you prepare for this
holiday season, I pray you and your family will be overshadowed in a fresh way
by the presence of the Savior.

J. Lee
Grady
is the former editor of Charisma. You can follow him on
Twitter at leegrady. His most recent book is
10 Lies Men Believe (Charisma House).

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Have We Departed From the  Simplicity of Christ?

Have We Departed From the Simplicity of Christ?

Recently I heard a pastor say the following: "When I was pastoring and saw little fruit, I began to call those with potential to reach others for Christ to our home and to mentor them one on one. That's where massive growth happened in the people." Local pastors and...

Take the Fight to the Enemy, Before He Strikes at You

Take the Fight to the Enemy, Before He Strikes at You

Read Time: 3 Minutes 7 Seconds “When the Philistines heard that they had anointed David king over Israel, all the Philistines went up to seek out David; and when David heard of it, he went down to the stronghold,” (2 Sam. 5:17). When David heard that he was under...

Joyce Meyer: Becoming a Prisoner of Hope

Joyce Meyer: Becoming a Prisoner of Hope

Read Time: 3 Minutes 56 Seconds God is good. And He has a good plan for each of our lives. No matter what may be going on right now, God’s plan is unfolding. In the meantime, Romans 12:12 tells us to “be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer,”...

Victimized By Gaslighting? 5 Steps to Finding Freedom

Victimized By Gaslighting? 5 Steps to Finding Freedom

Read Time: 2 minutes 26 seconds The term "gaslighting" has gone viral across social media this year and Merriam-Webster chose it as their word-of-the-year, saying searches for the word spiked 1,740% in 2022 alone. We're breaking down what the Bible has to say about...

WATCH: Vlad Savchuck: Life, Health and the Bible

WATCH: Vlad Savchuck: Life, Health and the Bible

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZdzLoS3wCM During a recent visit to @HungryGeneration, Pastor Vlad Savchuk asked Bill Wiese to comment on his personal experience applying the Word of God to his own life and health. These same principals hold true for all who read and...

RECENT ARTICLES

Miraculous Divine Intervention Birthed by Thanksgiving and Praise

Read Time: 4 Minutes 2 Seconds When I first became a believer in 1970, my mother was one of my first “converts," giving her heart to Jesus as soon as I shared with her the beauty, the power and the...
I’m Going Defcon G on the Enemy

I’m Going Defcon G on the Enemy

Read Time: 1 Minute 32 Seconds The last six years have been the best of times and the worst of times. I’ve seen more death, destruction, disease and devastation than I care to remember. I’ve also seen the hand of God move in extraordinary ways. Indeed, sometimes I...

Prophetic Vision: ‘Now is the Time of Your Healing’

Prophetic Vision: ‘Now is the Time of Your Healing’

Read Time: 3 Minutes 41 Seconds I was remembering a time when my husband and I were praying over friends who had been in a situation for many years that had caused deep trauma to their souls. As we were praying for them, I became aware of an angel standing over them...

5 Ways to Improve Your Emotional and Spiritual Health

5 Ways to Improve Your Emotional and Spiritual Health

Read Time: 4 Minutes 50 Seconds Do you believe the Lord is concerned about your emotional and spiritual health? He is. He wants you to know how to improve your emotional and spiritual health to be resilient in turbulent times. One of the most powerful things you can...

Pin It on Pinterest