First Person: The implausible truth of the Christmas story

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First Person: The implausible truth of the Christmas story

By William Perkins
Editor of The Baptist Record in Mississippi

“Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. And her husband, Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly.

“But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, ‘Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.’”

—Matthew 1:18–21

Ponder for a moment how implausible such a concept must appear to the purely scientific mind.

Who could believe a collection of 5,000-year-old verbal histories, the origins of which cannot be verified beyond a reasonable doubt, would foretell the coming of a Messiah?

Who could ascribe the fulfillment of that prophecy to the obscure, apparently illegitimate birth of a Jewish commoner in a backwater Middle East town before a decent calendar existed?

The biologist would explain that except for parthenogenesis in some lower plant and animal forms, no creature on earth ever came into existence without the sexual union of a male and female of the same species.

The geneticist would ask, since every person must receive half his deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) from his mother and half from his father, where was the father’s DNA?

The physician would posit that a child born under such primitive, nonsterile conditions in the filthy abode of unclean animals would more than likely not survive very long after birth.

The historian would assert that no one is absolutely certain what time of year, or even the year itself, that Jesus was born.

The attorney would demand a court order to compel Mary to submit to a physical examination to prove her impossible claim that she was pregnant and at the same time still a virgin.

The atheist would simply argue that since there is no God, there could be no Son of God.

The sleep researcher would attest that since dreams are nothing more than the brain randomly misfiring during unconsciousness, Joseph’s vision actually meant nothing.

‘In a word — faith’

No reasonable explanation can be found in modern science for the events of Jesus’ birth, so why should we believe the ancient biblical account? In a word — faith.

The righteousness of the gospel message is grounded in faith (Rom. 1:17). We derive our faith from accepting that message (Rom. 10:17), not by what we experience in the natural world (2 Cor. 5:8).

We must cover with faith everything we hold to be true (Heb. 11:6). We know with faith, nothing is impossible (Matt. 17:20, Mark 11:22–23).

Faith is accepting we cannot understand everything (Heb. 11:3), and yet we must still be willing to give God complete control of our lives (Prov. 3:5–6).

Faith is believing with all our hearts that God is who He says He is in His Word, that Jesus is the Son of God who came into this world exactly as the Bible describes and is everything the Bible says He is.

People who live as if they believe every word of the statements about faith call themselves Christians.

At this special time of year in the Christian world, be sure to make time to share your faith with someone who needs to know Jesus is Lord — the Christ, the Messiah.

Show them by word and deed the true meaning of Christmas.

Make it count

During this time of seemingly endless gift giving and secularism, make sure your gifts truly count for someone’s eternity.

Give your faith to someone who really needs it.

Give your money to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions so every unsaved soul on the globe can hear about Jesus before He comes back — and He is coming back.

Our Lord and Savior urged us to send His message to a lost world (Matt. 28:18–20).

After what He did for us, it’s the least we can do for Him.

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