NLT - 23 “Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.’”
Community answers are sorted based on votes. The higher the vote, the further up an answer is.
Although (in my opinion) devotion to Mary can be taken to extremes, belief in the virgin birth (as recorded in the gospels of Matthew and Luke) is an essential element of saving faith in Christ. Without the virgin birth, Jesus is reduced at most to the role that even many non-Christians ascribe to Him -- that of being a "great human teacher". But, as C. S. Lewis said in his book Mere Christianity, accepting Jesus as a great teacher without also accepting His own claim of being God incarnate (as indicated by His statements that He had always existed (John 8:57-59); that He and the Father are One (John 10:22-39); and that He had the authority to forgive sins (Luke 7:36-50) -- attributes or actions that are possible only if the virgin birth is true) is an option that is not available to a person. If Jesus were not God (as He Himself claimed to be), He would not even be a great teacher, but would, at minimum, be a lunatic, or, at worst, be the greatest fraud, liar, and deceiver the world has ever known, on a par with Satan himself. In addition, even Jesus' opponents recognized what He was saying by these claims. Although in pantheistic religions, anyone might claim to be part of God or to share in the divine essence, the Jewish concept of God was a Being who was outside the world, who had made the world, and who was infinitely different from anything in it. Also, only someone who was both fully, truly God as well as fully, truly human (as could be accomplished only through the virgin birth) could live a life of sinless perfection, both in nature and in thought, word, and deed (of which no one else has ever been or could ever be capable), and then die a sacrificial death that could be an atonement in God's sight for the sins of all humanity from eternity past to eternity future. And only such a Being could also validate His claims and the sufficiency of His atonement by rising from the dead to live eternally.
Yes it is, the Virgin Birth is important because of the original Sin and the plan for redemption set forth by God. Paul tells us the facts like these that make it clear where all of us stand being born of a man. Romans 3:23 "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God." This speaks of every human born with a earthly father. The one exception is Jesus who did not have an earthly father, the Holy Ghost overcame Mary and she conceived and brought forth a Son. This is the cornerstone of Christian faith in believing in the Virgin Birth of Christ. Why is that important, Paul further explains in Romans 5:19 "For as by one mans disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous" His reference here is to Christ who was obedience to the end, and have never sinned was the only possible perfect sacrifice to save mankind. The saying born in sin and shaped in iniquity it taken from Psalm 51:5 where it says "Behold I was shapen in iniquity;and in sin did my mother conceive me." So with God as His father Jesus was not born in sin and this is why the perfect sacrifice for us today. If we don't believe in the Virgin Birth we don't believe in Christ as the Son of the Living God and we cannot be saved.
In my opinion, the answer to the question is yes. The foremost alternative to believing in the virgin birth was expressed by the Jews in John 8:41 "... We be not born of fornication;..." Mary was with child when she was married to Joseph, presumably from fornication. True Christians cannot pick and choose which verses of the bible to believe or not believe, or which parts of the gospel to believe in. The miracles surrounding the birth of Christ testify to his unique status among human beings. All elements of the gospel are important, even though they are not equally emphasized in the scriptures. Ancient cultures such as the Aztecs, the Incas, or the Celtics practiced human sacrifice, but little or nothing came of it, and now these cultures are defunct. The Jews understood that their animal sacrifices didn't save them - they only covered over, or hid, their sins until judgment after death. This gave them extra time before death to reverse their behavior and multiply their good actions. The significance of Christ's sacrifice is that he didn't originate from a sexual act as other men and animals did. If he had, his sacrifice wouldn't have had any transcendent quality to it. His sacrifice enables sins to be blotted out once and for all so they will not be included in a Christian's judgment after death.
As it pertains to the virgin birth and it’s believe being a requirement for salvation, be aware that salvation comes from the renewal of the spirit and the waters of baptism(John 1 & 3). When we break it down, we find that there is a process to come to know Christ and accepting him as lord and savior. This process is different in each and one of us in terms of length, understanding, believe, faith and dedication and commitment. Within this process of changing your spirit and bringing it to new birth, you will have to confront your own belief as to whether or not Mary was a virgin. Now I caution you, this path can derail you from seeking salvation because it can entrap you in the world wind of evidence seeking. Understand that believe is no enough to endure a Christ like walk. You must have faith as well. So, I encourage you to look first at a faith argument or debate specially one that is bible driven. Don’t force yourself to be convinced but look at how the prophecies of the messiah were unraveled. And then let that be your guide to a belief and faith of the virginity of Mary. Once that has been accomplished than your path is fairly simple; follow Christ. Now, is it a requirement? In my search as a disciple of Christ, I can only tell you that it was not an issue whether Christ was born of a virgin, the only time that was brought up was to confirm whether the prophecies come to completion, and the only ones seeking those answers were the Jewish and/ or learned men. For the most part, the focus was Christ Jesus and the following of him, the only requirement was to repent of your sins and be baptized (Acts 2) As to my personal conviction, I have studies both sides of the arguments and in both sides the possibilities of a virgin birth exist, however, there is compelling evidence of its improbability, I chose the faith argument because my soul is not governed by the rules of this creation or existence, it is governed by God, Jesus Christ and his Holy spirit. I believe and have faith that Mary was a virgin girl and Jesus came from her as the angel stated (Luke and Matthew 1).
Belief in the virgin birth isn't nearly as important as believing in the resurrection. Not only was the resurrection one of the most documented happenings in history at that time, it validated, very emphatically, that the Lord Jesus Christ was who he said he was. As the Apostle Paul wrote: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. 1Co 15:17
The last time I checked neither the disciples nor Christ said that anyone had to believe in a virgin birth to be saved. When the jailer asked, "What must I do to be saved?" Acts 16: 30-31, Paul said, Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved." If belief in a virgin birth were important to our salvation, both Christ and the disciples would have made it very clear that it was. Belief in Christ and repentance - turning from your sins, are all that is required to be saved. Don't let the world or anyone distract you from the pure and simple truth that believing Christ is the Son of God, is God, and came to earth to live and die as a sacrifice for our sins, and that accepting him as lord and savior and repenting and following him is all that is needed to be saved. Salvation does not come through doctrine, laws or dogma, but through faith and belief.
All answers are REVIEWED and MODERATED.
Please ensure your answer MEETS all our guidelines.
A good answer provides new insight and perspective. Here are guidelines to help facilitate a meaningful learning experience for everyone.