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Yeshua, the virgin birth, and Isaiah 7:14
#1
(Isa 7:14 [KJV])
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 verse is commonly used, along with Isaiah 9:6(5) to prove that Yeshua was born as god, and fulfilled these prophecies. We see that the NT accounts stipulate in Matthew 1:23 that Yeshua’s birth is the fulfillment of prophecy. I’d like to state my objections to these claims, and then open up the thread for discussion.

1) Isa 7:14 was fulfilled in the time frame of King Ahaz, Hezekiah, and the prophet Isaiah. We see that Isa 7:15-25 specifies what is to occur after the child’s birth. Clearly, none of these events are associated with Yeshua’s birth or his lifetime.

2) Luke 2:21-24 specifies that Mary brought offerings as was required for married women who give birth in accordance with the Torah in Lev 12:2-8. These offerings are not commanded of virgins, like other commandments regarding virgins, i.e., Deut 22:23-29. So, Mary was not a virgin, and conceived naturally.

3) The word conceive in Isa 7:14, “hara” in Hebrew, is used in the same form in 11 other places in Tanakh and is always associated with a natural conception and with a woman not a virgin, Gen 16:11, Gen 38:24,25, Ex 21:22, Jud 13:5,7, 1 Sam 4:19, 2 Sam 11:5, Job 3:3, Isa 26:17, Jer 31:8. Isa 7:14 is no different.

4) The word in Isa 7:14 for virgin, in Hebrew almah, doesn’t necessarily mean virgin. The better word in Hebrew to use is Bethulah like in the verses in Deut 22:23-29.

5) A pregnant virgin is not a sign. How is this any different than a pregnant non-virgin? A sign is visible, i.e., Deut 6:8. The deliverance of Judah was the sign and that was visible.

6) Deut 23:13-14 specifies that Hashem does not dwell amongst filth, uncleaniness, indeceny, etc. Being born through a woman’s womb, in indeceny, unclothed, and filth, would be a contradiction to Hashem’s holiness. So, G-d could not have been born, or for that matter died like some people say.

7) The word/name Immanuel does not mean a physical manifestation of G-d. 2 Chr 3:13, 2 Chr 32:8, Psalm 46:7, Psalm 46:11, Isaiah 8:10, use the same wording to denote a feeling and knowledge that Hashem has blessed people and in that sense, G-d is understood as being with them. Isa 7:14 is merely a reassurance to King Ahaz that the southern kingdom would not fall.

8) For G-d to be born as a child, several things would need to happen on a biological level: a) The male sperm would have to have G-d in it. b) The woman’s ovum would have to have G-d in it. c) During the process of cell multiplication, every cell would have to have G-d in it. d) The structure and form of G-d would be changing constantly. e) G-d would be confined to a physical form, space, and time, and since the trinity is equal, all three persons would be trapped in the womb. I think you can see where I’m going with this. You end up with multiple gods on many levels, finite gods, gods of flesh and blood, and a god that changes, all contradictions of Isa 40:25, 46:5, 43:10-11, Mal 3:6. This thinking is no different than polytheism and G-d in all of nature and creation. f) As a result of cells dying as part of the normal growth process of the fetus and human development, you are saying that G-d is dying every day, and connected to death and unholiness. Only mortals die as shown in Psalm 82:6-7.

9) Being born from a woman only and not a physical father disqualifies Yeshua from the throne of David. Ezra 9:12 specifies that children of mixed marriages where a parent is not considered an Israelite/Jew, cannot inherit. So, if Yeshua does not have a physical father, then he cannot be king or messiah.

10) The promises made to Abraham and King David specifically states that they would have a physical descendant from their loins where they would be active participants of the fulfillment of the prophecies: Gen 35:11, 2 Sam 7:12, Psalm 89:29,34-36, Psalm 132:11, Isa 11:1. Notice that the Hebrew word for root in Isa 11:1 is also used to denote a “chain” in 1 Kings 7:17. The teaching is clear. If there isn’t a physical father for Yeshua, then the “chain” is broken and Yeshua is not a rightful heir as promised to David through his loins, Act 2:30 [KJV].

11) The process of marriage for Jews is referred to as Kiddushin/betrothal. The shoresh or root for the word comes from the same word for holiness. In other words, when a Jewish couple gets married in obedience to the Torah, their marriage is consecrated in holiness. What you refer to as the Holy Ghost is incorrect. G-d doesn't reside in people, Dan 2:11, or flesh and blood as described above in #8. So, Holy Ghost should be properly rendered as ruach hakodesh or "in a spirit of holiness" in agreement with Hashem's will and Torah. Any Jewish couple that is married according to the Torah then conceives in the "ruach hakodesh". There is nothing supernatural going on in Isa 7:14 or Matthew 1:23.

12) The name Immanuel means "G-d is with us". It doesn't mean the person named is G-d. J-sus was never named Immanuel in his lifetime nor does the NT mention it. Yeshua, short for Yehoshua (Joshua) means "G-d is salvation", not him. This agrees with Psalm 20:6, Psalm 28:8, Psalm 89:26, Hab 3:13, where the anointed/messiah is saved by G-d.

If you would care to discuss, please pick one point (1 - 12) at a time, and reply. This will make the exchange more manageable. And please, no personal attacks. Just stick to the point.
#2
3) I wouldn't say it necessitates a natural conception. I would point out that הָרָה, "hara," means "is pregnant," not "will be pregnant," indicating again that this is a contemporaneous matter. How do we know הָרָה means present tense and not future tense? When we see other times the word is used, it always refers to someone who is pregnant, as in Exodus 21:22, when two quarreling men strike a pregnant woman, "אִשָּׁה הָרָה."
#3
(09-13-2013, 09:49 AM)benyosef Wrote: 3) I wouldn't say it necessitates a natural conception. I would point out that הָרָה, "hara," means "is pregnant," not "will be pregnant," indicating again that this is a contemporaneous matter. How do we know הָרָה means present tense and not future tense? When we see other times the word is used, it always refers to someone who is pregnant, as in Exodus 21:22, when two quarreling men strike a pregnant woman, "אִשָּׁה הָרָה."

I am not arguing with you (much) but the word 'pregnant' is a noun not a verb, it describes a condition not a time frame of the condition, the sign to be given is a pregnant maiden who gives birth to a son who is called 'God with us', the LXX has 'gives birth' in the future tense as I am almost certain is the Hebrew, this gives the entire statement a future time frame.
#4
(09-13-2013, 10:44 AM)HumblePetitioner Wrote: I am not arguing with you (much) but the word 'pregnant' is a noun not a verb, it describes a condition not a time frame of the condition, the sign to be given is a pregnant maiden who gives birth to a son who is called 'God with us', the LXX has 'gives birth' in the future tense as I am almost certain is the Hebrew, this gives the entire statement a future time frame.

"Pregnant," technically, is an adjective, and thus could be written in present or future tense. Hebrew is different than English in that words are altered to reflect numbers and tenses. For example, the messengers told Jacob that they came (בָּאנוּ) to Esau (Gen 32:6), and then Jacob said if Esau will come (יָבוֹא) to fight (32:9), etc. Same root, בֹּא, but edited to reflect numbers and tenses.

Concerning the LXX: if you look into Josephus, the Anchor Bible Dictionary, or many introductions to modern-day LXX's, you will learn that the rabbis only translated the Five Books of Moses, not the entire Jewish Scriptures. The Church would later add the rest of the Hebrew Bible, and would even edit what the rabbis wrote in the Five Books. Thus, the current LXX's are wholly a product of the Church, designed to further their message, and do not accurately reflect what the Hebrew text says.
#5
(09-13-2013, 09:49 AM)benyosef Wrote: 3) I wouldn't say it necessitates a natural conception. I would point out that הָרָה, "hara," means "is pregnant," not "will be pregnant," indicating again that this is a contemporaneous matter. How do we know הָרָה means present tense and not future tense? When we see other times the word is used, it always refers to someone who is pregnant, as in Exodus 21:22, when two quarreling men strike a pregnant woman, "אִשָּׁה הָרָה."
I agree with you. The only thing I would add is there is an assumption of a normal pregancy unless proven otherwise. We might be able to say then that Ex 21:22 could have been a virgin pregnancy too, or any of the other pregnancies in the Tanakh as well.
#6
benyosef Wrote:"Pregnant," technically, is an adjective, and thus could be written in present or future tense. Hebrew is different than English in that words are altered to reflect numbers and tenses. For example, the messengers told Jacob that they came (בָּאנוּ) to Esau (Gen 32:6), and then Jacob said if Esau will come (יָבוֹא) to fight (32:9), etc. Same root, בֹּא, but edited to reflect numbers and tenses.

So ‘technically’ we agree that the noun ‘pregnant’ is being used to describe (like an adjective) the condition of the ‘maiden’, but you are suggesting that the word ‘pregnant’ is implying the present condition while the verb ‘will give birth’ is implying the future condition, so that the one has no effect on the other, am I reading you correctly?

benyosef Wrote:Concerning the LXX: if you look into Josephus, the Anchor Bible Dictionary, or many introductions to modern-day LXX's, you will learn that the rabbis only translated the Five Books of Moses, not the entire Jewish Scriptures. The Church would later add the rest of the Hebrew Bible, and would even edit what the rabbis wrote in the Five Books. Thus, the current LXX's are wholly a product of the Church, designed to further their message, and do not accurately reflect what the Hebrew text says.

So what you are suggesting is that outside of the Torah there were no other books of the Tanakh translated into Greek prior to the 1st century CE and that all the other books were rendered into Greek by members of the Church after the death of Jesus, am I reading you correctly?
#7
(09-13-2013, 11:59 AM)HumblePetitioner Wrote: So ‘technically’ we agree that the noun ‘pregnant’ is being used to describe (like an adjective) the condition of the ‘maiden’, but you are suggesting that the word ‘pregnant’ is implying the present condition while the verb ‘will give birth’ is implying the future condition, so that the one has no effect on the other, am I reading you correctly?

Summarily, if Isaiah had wanted to say "will be pregnant," he would have used the conjugation which means "will be," not "presently is."

(09-13-2013, 11:59 AM)HumblePetitioner Wrote: So what you are suggesting is that outside of the Torah there were no other books of the Tanakh translated into Greek prior to the 1st century CE and that all the other books were rendered into Greek by members of the Church after the death of Jesus, am I reading you correctly?

Yes. It's possible that some books of the Prophets and Writings were translated between the initial LXX and the Jerusalem Church, but the finalized version is a Church product.
#8
I'm adding this last point to the original 12 in post #1 of this thread.

13) I went back and looked at Isa 9:6(5), and some insights which I overlooked. Isa 9:6(5), Isa 37:32, 2 Kings 19:31 all use the same phrase "The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this".

In both Isa 37:32 and 2 Kings 19:31, King Hezekiah is mentioned and is the context of the passages. Being that King Ahaz is the father and reigning king in Isa 7:14, and the sign is given that the southern tribe of Judah will not be overrun by the Assyrians, it is pretty sure that Hezekiah is the son/child in Isa 7:14 and Isa 9:6(5). The context match in these verses.
#9
benyusef Wrote:Summarily, if Isaiah had wanted to say "will be pregnant," he would have used the conjugation which means "will be," not "presently is."

The term conjugation is applied only to the inflection of verbs, and not of other parts of speech; inflection of nouns and adjectives (etc.) is known as declension.

Conjugation is the inflection of a verb to indicate person, number, gender, tense, aspect, mood, voice, or other grammatical categories.

Declension is the inflection of nouns, pronouns, adjectives, and articles to indicate number (at least singular and plural), case (nominative or subjective, genitive or possessive, etc.), and gender.

According to the Hebrew Grammar by Gesenius the Hebrew language only has two tenses (Perfect and Imperfect) suggesting that, from a purely Hebraic time standpoint, an action is either completed (past tense) or is incomplete (either present or future tense). Therefore it is only through context or the interpretative guidance of the Holy Spirit that a correct interpretation may be derived.

Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Look, the young woman is with child and shall bear a son, and shall name him Immanuel. [NRSV]

Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Watch! The young lady is conceiving a child, and will give birth to a son, and his name will be called Immanuel. [ISV]

Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. [ESV]

Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. [NIV]

Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel. [NASB]

No matter which interpretation one chooses a contemporary fulfillment is possible and could have taken place BUT the Holy Spirit has given ‘us’ the understanding that this sign prophesy is also applicable to the LORD Jesus and is the announcement of His virgin human birth.
#10
(09-16-2013, 12:08 PM)HumblePetitioner Wrote:
benyusef Wrote:Summarily, if Isaiah had wanted to say "will be pregnant," he would have used the conjugation which means "will be," not "presently is."

The term conjugation is applied only to the inflection of verbs, and not of other parts of speech; inflection of nouns and adjectives (etc.) is known as declension.

Conjugation is the inflection of a verb to indicate person, number, gender, tense, aspect, mood, voice, or other grammatical categories.

Declension is the inflection of nouns, pronouns, adjectives, and articles to indicate number (at least singular and plural), case (nominative or subjective, genitive or possessive, etc.), and gender.

According to the Hebrew Grammar by Gesenius the Hebrew language only has two tenses (Perfect and Imperfect) suggesting that, from a purely Hebraic time standpoint, an action is either completed (past tense) or is incomplete (either present or future tense). Therefore it is only through context or the interpretative guidance of the Holy Spirit that a correct interpretation may be derived.

Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Look, the young woman is with child and shall bear a son, and shall name him Immanuel. [NRSV]

Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Watch! The young lady is conceiving a child, and will give birth to a son, and his name will be called Immanuel. [ISV]

Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. [ESV]

Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. [NIV]

Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel. [NASB]

No matter which interpretation one chooses a contemporary fulfillment is possible and could have taken place BUT the Holy Spirit has given ‘us’ the understanding that this sign prophesy is also applicable to the LORD Jesus and is the announcement of His virgin human birth.
Are you arguing for a double-prophecy fulfillment, one in Hezekiah's time and one in JC's time?


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