As a Spiritualist, I have always had a problem with the concept of the Virgin Birth. It went against the known Natural Laws. I understand science has now discovered species that are able to self-reproduce, however this has come more recently. In struggling with the Virgin Birth, I found information in the Bible that enabled me to resolve this question in a manner satisfying to me. I do NOT offer this as fact. I simply offer it as a thought provoking idea for your consideration. On the internet you can go to Yahoo.com; enter The Space Ships of the Prophet Ezekiel and see the prototype that was built to the specifications of those dimensions. Following that trend of thought, would it make any difference if Jesus’ conception was actually accomplished in that manner? We realize Biblical people could not describe these experiences as we can today due to the complete lack of vocabulary as well as the inconceivability of space travel at that time.
As Spiritualists, we regard the Bible as one of the most timeless Holy Books. It is the most recently written of all the Holy Writings and probably the most widely read Holy Book in this part of the world. It also incorporates all of the teachings of the previous Master Teachers and is just as clearly written and easily understandable as other Holy Books, even though sometimes it, too, is difficult to read. (This writer struggles especially with Numbers and lineages!) Also, with all the translations from Aramaic, Greek, Latin and Hebrew many idioms throughout the centuries have changed and may have been misunderstood or mistranslated. In our own days meanings have changed during our own lifetimes such as gay which once meant happy and lighthearted but which now has a totally different connotation.
We accept Jesus as our Master Teacher and as the Wayshower; the most highly evolved teacher the world has known up to this time.
Hinduism, Zoroastrianism, Buddhism, Judaism, Confucianism, Taoism, Shintoism, and the religion of Islam all proceeded, or came before, Christianity.
The first five books of the New Testament of the Bible in this order are St. Matthew, St. Mark, St. Luke, St. John and Acts of the Apostles. I do not know who titled those people as saints. The only religion I am familiar with that title people as saints is the Catholic religion. Of those five books, only two, St. Matthew and St. Luke, contain the story of Jesus’ birth.
We could go into the story of Zacharias and Elizabeth, the parents of John, but today we are going to omit that story except for St. Luke Chapter 1, verse 17 verse which states: “ and he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias….” This passage read in full (Luke verses 5 thru 17) indicates that John was the reincarnation of Elias. You also have the reference in St. Matthew, Chapter 17; Verses 10 thru 13, which reads in part “…and Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come and restore all things. But I say unto you, that Elias is come already and they knew him not. And the disciples understood that he spake unto them of John the Baptist.”
According to the chronology listed in the first chapter of Matthew we find that there are 42 generations between Abrahams time and the birth of Jesus, a generation being the average time span between the birth of the parent and the birth of their offspring. (Merriam Webster Collegiate Dictionary).
The story of the birth of Jesus demonstrates prophecy, starting back in the Old Testament in the book of Isaiah, Chapter 7: Verse 14 which states, “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign: Behold a virgin shall conceive and bear a son and shall call his name Immanuel.”
In the first chapter of St. Matthew, Verse 23 we find that the name Emmanuel (sic Immanuel) interpreted is: “…God with us.” Isaiah lived back in the time of King Solomon and Jeremiah, so this prophecy took a number of years and generations to work out and manifest. St. Matthews’ story of the birth of Jesus is certainly the same or parallel, to the story of Jesus’ birth in St. Luke. However, after reading Matthews’ account of Jesus birth, I found it rather utilitarian as compared with reading St. Luke’s’ narration of the same thing which is most likely the reason that the traditional Christmas story of Jesus’ birth is usually read from the Gospel of St. Luke Chapter 2, verses 1 – 11..
Today, in keeping with the Season of Christmas, we are going to share the Biblical story of the birth of Jesus as is traditional in this part of the world. Chapter two of St. Luke verses one through eleven reads: “And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Cesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria. And all went to be taxed every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth into Judea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her first born son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
And so it is that we celebrate the birth of the Master Teacher, Jesus, the last known entity of such high vibration to walk on earth. It doesn’t matter how he was conceived, really. The important thing is his teachings which we strive to emulate.
Go with God, and with rejoicing in your hearts for the teachings Jesus brought. His most valuable teaching was to love one another, which He repeated several times in several ways. If nothing else is valid, that teaching alone makes this season special. We can do no better than to love one another with forgiveness in our hearts. None of us is perfect. None of us is without blame. If we can live up to that one teaching, we will surely capture the essence of Infinite Intelligence in our lives. Merry Christmas to you all and may God be within you and manifested in your lives to the highest of your ability, not only at this time, but every day of the year.
By Rev. Frances D, Montgomery, CM, NST