During this season, I tend to page through Jim Boice’s book “The Christ of Christmas” (Linked below) for some annual Christmas reading. One chapter has to do with the historicity of the virgin birth and its relevance to the uniqueness of who Christ is. As we endeavor to keep a Christ-centered Christmas, here is an excerpt from that chapter that I hope will be be a devotional thought for you and an encouragement in are of history during this Christmas season.
First, the idea of the virgin birth is not some later addition to Christianity but is present in the earliest sources. People often try to undermine Christianity by saying of important doctrines, “this is only something that has been tacked on later by people who found it to be a pious way of representing some subjective experience.” . . . . [What we have in the New Testament] is the expression in historical narration of what really happened.
Second, the virgin birth was not invented by Luke (or any other early writer) but was learned by him from the earliest and most reliable of all witnesses—presumably Mary herself, or at least those to whom she passed on the information.
If that is true, we conclude that the virgin birth is a fact of history. We recognize, of course, that people do not like facts that fail to correspond to with their own experience. If they fail to conform, these facts are presumed to have no basis, and skeptics are ready to dispense with them as myth. But that is not a wise procedure. Shakespeare’s Hamlet said, “There are more things in heaven and earth . . . than are dreamt of in your philosophy” (act I SC. 5, line 167). People often have a limited philosophy. Many things do not enter into it. But that does not mean they are untrue. So when we are dealing with these great doctrines of Christianity we must recognize that, in spite of contemporary unbelief, the virgin birth has a place in history.
Fourth, the virgin birth is important because of its unique and miraculous nature, which therefore points to the uniqueness of Jesus Christ. It is significant that the life of the Lord Jesus is bracketed by two great miracles. AT the beginning is the virgin birth: He comes into being without benefit of a human father, and so is the Son of God and son of man in a unique way. At the end is the resurrection: He conquers and transcends the greatest of all enemies, death. What clearer way did God have of drawing attention to this one who is unique in human history? (James Montgomery Boice, The Christ of Christmas, pp. 47-48).
Recommended Christmas Books: