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More Than the Legend of Zeus - Luke 1:31-34

Wisdom for the Heart / Dr. Stephen Davey
The Truth Network Radio
January 1, 2020 12:00 am

More Than the Legend of Zeus - Luke 1:31-34

Wisdom for the Heart / Dr. Stephen Davey

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January 1, 2020 12:00 am

What makes Jesus' virgin birth stand out amongst history's many other virgin birth stories? Stephen brings us a wonderful answer as he gives us a lesson in history, world religion, and the Christmas story.

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Throughout human history there have been those who claimed to bring salvation, but only Jesus really caught he bore in his body on the tree, your weight of sin. He was pierced, the prophet said for your transgression. He was crushed for your iniquity. This is the way of your sin and it is death, and he paid the penalty died. Only God could pay the penalty.

That's why Jesus fully man is also Christ is fully God and fully man. True Christian you know this to be true you know that salvation isn't possible without believing in Jesus, but we also need to recognize that Satan also knows this. That's why throughout the ages. Satan has presented counterfeit. Christ's legends of false salvation. This is wisdom for the heart and today Stephen Davey is going to remind you that there is no salvation apart from Jesus Christ and any claim to the contrary is a lie.

The lesson you're about to hear is called more than the legend of Zeus. If you're able to grab your Bible and settle in for today's lesson from God's word pierced Philip Yancey once contrasted in one of his books the humility of Christ coming to earth with a trip abroad by the Queen of England when the royal family travel someplace to make an appearance.

There shown. Of course with their jewelry and everything just seems perfect and Lotta fanfare surrounded by written notice paparazzi.

He recorded when Queen Elizabeth visiting the United States entirely and that there were so many details and preparations. She traveled with 4000 pounds of luggage or luggage contained two outfits for every conceivable occasion, including one outfit in case somebody died and she needed to attend the funeral. She brought along her own hairdresser to valets.

Dozens of personal attendance now notices carefully preserved within her luggage were 40 pints of plasma in case of a medical emergency.

Even a brief visit of the Queen to a foreign country can cost her government upwards of $20 million. Having been over there recently and toured a number of the raw residences this past summer they have a custom of flying the flag whenever the Queen is in residence see the flag flying somewhere how to castle, you know, the Queen is in. I can't help but think as we rehearse the story of our Majesty the King of Kings. He has arrive.

He has traveled to earth without personal attendance in factories late as you know, in a borrowed feed trough. It seems the animals were willing to loan it to their creator. This Christmas like every other Christmas we have the announcement again. Worldwide, the Kings arrived. For those of us who believe in him beyond December 25.

We believe in him and his flag flies in and from the castle of our hearts.

It is the flag of redemption. Jesus did not come to earth with spare blood packed away in case of an emergency.

He came to give his blot away because there was an emergency. There was already wages of sin, facing us is death but the gift of God through Jesus Christ is eternal life. What an incredible mystery God the Redeemer coming to put on the street close of ordinary humanity, the eternal second person of the triune God becoming confined in time the omnipresent son being bound in a spirit fertilized egg in a virgin's womb. Talk about a mystery. None of us really can fathom it. Yet our gospel depends upon it entirely. This is an optional truth. This is foundational doctrine that he is fully God and fully man. No wonder the enemy launched and still launches severe attacks against this truth.

Even before the end of the apostle John's life the last living apostle. There were attacks on this doctrine of Christ in an early view probably existing during the remaining days of John's life was called no sadism.

It said that Jesus wasn't really flesh and John I've encountered this specifically in his second letter he writes for many deceivers of gone out into the world. Those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the antichrist. The truth is that Jesus Christ is not fully man and fully God. We have no true Christianity, we have no gospel.

The essence is one off the road and the power of the gospel is that God became man, and that by being both holy God and a holy man. He was able to reconcile sinners to God.

It is true, then, of course, what the New Testament says about him and all the other things would be suspect.

Right if the gospel writers misrepresented the truth of his birth. How do we know they're telling the truth about anything else about his virgin birth is atoning death is resurrection is ascension is returned. Literally, they all stand together.

Those doctrines were they all fall together. No wonder the attacks are so vociferous against this truth of Christ. Holy God and holy man wasn't long after John the apostle died that other views reared their heretical heads. Another view known as mono visitors and taught that Christ had only one nature, sort of a fusion of divine and human. He was at least 50% God and he was 50% human. The attacks on Christ's nature had not gone away.

There is still great theological debate on battle about this second person of the God one British author wrote. Not too long ago that Jesus would have been horrified to think of a church, let alone people worshiping him as if he were divine.

Jesus would have been horrified at the thought surprised another road that Jesus was just a magician who had people under his sway.

Another wrote Jesus was a great rabbi who had no intention of starting a movement he was just a good teacher this and this is true then Christ cannot truly represent us as man and he can really redeem us as God Another way Satan attacks the authenticity of Christ nature is not just by denying it or making it sound silly, but by counterfeiting by promoting other views to dilute the uniqueness of the virgin birth counterfeiting.

The message just study the religions of the world you will be exposed to story after story after story of virgin born son.

Romans believed that Zeus impregnated Smeal without contact with her and that she conceived by Nicias, the Lord of the earth was the virgin born son.

This view was held by many.

As Paul walked in that Empire teaching the truth of who Christ was the ancient Sumerians even earlier inscribed on a wall thousands of years before the birth of Christ, how their emperor was created in the womb of his mother by their God's. He was a virgin born son 600 years before the birth of Christ. It was claimed that the goddess of procreation brought about the conception of King's inaccurate been his mother's womb.

He also was a son of God. The Chinese have their own goddess sheeting Lou holding her baby, you can take all of these stories of all the world religions and you can interpret them one of two ways. One, you could arrive at the conclusion that all these virgin conception stories means Christianity simply borrowed the idea from other religions and sorta came up with its own version, or you can understand it is the enemy's strategy to predate Christianity with similar versions of the gospel so that when the events of the gospel are unfolded.

People can say that's nice but that's old staff did Satan know at the beginning of human history that God had in mind a virgin born son so that he could counterfeiting and development of manipulative. We go all the way back to Genesis chapter 3 verse 15 when God said to Satan, the seed of the woman will crush the head of the serpent your member that is the first gospel, the proto-evangelism of the proto-event going.

This is the first message of the gospel, foretold by God. The seed of the woman will crush the head of the serpent.

Every other time in the Bible you read about seed literally sperm or offspring, it's a reference to the sperm of man, but here in Genesis 315 you find the phrase in fact the only time in the Bible you read about the seed of a woman there's no seed of a woman. Why is it mentioned here this way.

The only time in the Bible because she conceives without a man or offspring, which is uniquely independent of the seed of man will crush defeat the serpent. This is a reference to the Messiah defeating Satan at the very outset of human history. Satan knew what was going to happen. Add to that another text that Satan was fully aware of the prophet Isaiah said a virgin is going to conceive right bear a son in the name of that son is Manuel God with us is going to be the conception within the womb of a virgin, by means of God.

Satan knows all about this. He happens to be fairly bright. He's not entirely bright because he refuses to surrender how dumb is that he's read the rest of the book he knows Revelation, but he is fairly bright. He knows and so he dispenses it originates and manipulates and encourages and facilitates the development of pagan thought to incorporate the idea of virgin birth, so you have a mother who one day sees a great white elephant come into her womb. She bears a virgin born son name Buddha you have the reincarnation of Vishnu is a fish, a tortoise, a bore ally and eventually descending into the womb of a woman and is born to her as Krishna and you have Hinduism even during the days of Christ. The legend persisted that Alexander the great was virgin born by the power of Zeus through a snake serpent that impregnated his mother Olympia's. He too was a son of God, born of a virgin. Imagine all the world religions, the major world philosophies claim a son born as the offspring of their God. So Christ is born of a virgin, truly the world of Christ can easily say that we've heard that story before.

Christianity does has its own version your philosophy professor in college might've told you that Christianity is just borrowed. That's what he believes.

He believes that and he will go to hell unless hell turns out to just be another myth that we've concocted, which he depends upon. Hopefully that wasn't true either. I would Satan spend so much energy and time, effort to deny an attack and dilute in counterfeit the message of God's son virgin born sign fact you study the gospel in the new study world religions. It's amazing to me how much of the truth of the gospel is counterfeited is already in a sense taken. The terms are already arrested by Satan. The concepts of the gospel. You get the virgin birth of the resurrection you have baptism you have the thought of being born again was new. When Jesus came along was already well worn. The mystery religions had initiations where the initiate would be bathed and blinded, and afterwards he would be considered born again. In fact, one mystery religion would take its initiate through the blood dripping upon them, and then having declared him born again. They give him a cup of milk to drink, assuming he was a newborn baby Jesus Christ and his church bar these ideas. No, Satan is already been at work for the teachers and world religions to counterfeit claims of Christ and the virgin birth is one of those key doctrines which he seeks to undermine why because he knows he knows fully well that without the virgin birth without a Messiah who was fully God and fully man the world is without a Savior. We either have a good man or some tainted deity who is unable to save Ravi Zacharias God is using tremendously. These days, and a few watch the news we just recently he spoke in the Mormon Tabernacle invited there to declare the Christians truth related to the deity of Jesus Christ. And he preached a packed house. He wants one of his recent works talked about Larry king talkshow host Larry king was asked the question if you could select one person in all of human history to interview who would it be and he said Jesus Christ very things I'd love to interview Jesus Christ and the questioner followed with and what would you like to ask him. Larry king replied I would like to ask him if he was indeed virgin born the answer to that question would define history for me, ladies and gentlemen of the story of Christ. Virgin birth is just another legend just another story.

And so is what the rest of the Bible says about him but if he is indeed fully God and fully man. It does, in fact, define your history and mine. That's the question who is Jesus the wonder that one of the most often attacked versus and denied would be in Matthew's gospel chapter 1 verse 18.

I will give you a few verses you might turn there are never what you come here without opening your Bible.

Matthew one verse 18. Here's how simple it is, but it can only be believed by faith. Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows.

Here's how it happened when his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, that is engaged considered by Jewish law to be married, as were but a year would be separating the between the betrothal or the official announcement and consummation during this year before they came together she was found. She was discovered to be with child by the Holy Spirit. You have 17 versus explaining his human lineage and one verse explaining is the mind because all we need one verse to know we can understand any more than that.

What a mystery if you want to turn over to Luke looks gospel his account in chapter 1, a little bit more explanation is given by Luke and I'm so grateful, probably because Luke was a doctor or medical doctor.

God used him to give many details of things related to his birth. Luke chapter 1 verse 31 of a hold the Angels telling Mary look now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name him Jesus. He will be great will be called the son of the most high in the Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, that is, he is the rightful heir to the throne of David and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and his kingdom will have no end.

And Mary said to the angel.

The same thing we would say how can this be, since I am a virgin and the angel answered and said to her, here's the explanation, the Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the most high will overshadow you and for that reason, the holy offspring shall be called the son of God, there is the Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the most high will overshadow you overshadows a Greek word that refers to a cloud that covers over some area. There's your explanation where you be overwhelmed by the Holy Spirit. Do we understand that no we understand how God could fertilize an egg by as it were touching an egg with an womb. No, no more than we can understand so much of what we believe to understand. I got to collect your dust one day, bringing together and then reunited with your spirit that's already been celebrating with him in heaven and he's going to give you a glorified body needs to take you to be with him forever and ever and ever and ever and ever and ever and ever know that either. Only God can understand his ways and were not God would do is good to get up in the morning sometimes look in the mirror and say I don't know who you think you are, but you are not God coming here and we breakfast.

The apostle Paul said, beyond any doubt. The mystery is great God appeared in a body. He was really human. He wasn't pretending the learn how to walk like a fool. These people into thinking I'm human. God sent forth his son, born of a woman. Galatians 44. Why must Jesus Christ be fully human. Let me give you three reasons are lot of them whittled up three you will get more than three. Wayne Gruden is an excellent systematic theology. You can go there if the others are left out number one so that he would in fact the representative of the human race in his obedience so that he would be a representative of the human race in his obedience.

The Redeemer had to be a man. He could be faking or pretending he had to be man fully. The Bible says as one man's sin led to condemnation for all men, so one man's act of righteousness leads to life for as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by one man's obedience many will be made righteous. You have the first Adam and you have the last Adam, you have one begins the human race. You have the second or last which begins a new race under people a new possession of God, the holy priesthood that we might declare the praises of him who called us out of darkness into everlasting what light.

No one answered very quickly here this important truth. Jesus was fully human and could be because he had a human parent human parent from Mary.

He received his human nature so that he was a member of Adam's race. But while Jesus received from Mary is human nature. He did not receive from Joseph, the transmission of Adamic sin nature is very important what Orthodox theologians call inherited guilt which comes by way of Adam's seed follow carefully the only way Jesus could be fully human and not corrupted with the legal and moral guilt of Adam would be to be born apart from the seed of Adam is only one way that could happen fully human because he was given flesh and blood in nature from Mary and yet there was no seed of Adam why he was virgin born so he could in fact be a representative of the human race is perfect life and obedience. Secondly, Jesus had to be a man so that he could be a substitute for the human race, and a sacrifice.

Jesus had not been a man. He could not of been able to be in our place and pay the penalty due to the human race. Listen to how Hebrews puts it in chapter 2 verse 17 he had to be made like his brethren, he had to be made like his brethren, in all things that he might be an atoning sacrifice for the sins of the people which leads me to the third he had to be a man so that he could experience the penalty. The human race. With his death. Paul wrote to the Philippians, Christ was made in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. So Jesus fully man could bear the penalty of God by becoming sin, our sin bearer for us.

He had to be a man and ordered me a representative, a substitute and experience the penalty you need to understand ladies and gentlemen, there isn't any salvation in his birth there is in any salvation in his teaching. There isn't any salvation in his sinless life. Those are all important, but even those alone could not save us some money had to die. Somebody had to bear the wrath of God. Somebody had to become our sin bearer. So Jesus was born, so that he could die and come back to glorified resurrected life the Scripture say brought himself back to life. He's more then then fully human is gotta be more than that. Then right. He is fully God and we must be fully God to be the satisfaction for our sins and not our sins. Only first John 22 rights, but also for those of the whole world only one who was fully God could bear the penalty of the sin of the whole world. How do you bear the sin of the whole world. We couldn't pay the penalty of our own load of sin and guilt because our load of sin and guilt is against an infinite God.

It will take an infinite amount of time to pay the penalty that will never end. So how do you bear the weight of sin against an infinite God in a moment of time. You must be fully God, not just fully man. He bore in his body on the tree, your weight of sin.

He was pierced, the prophet said for your transgression. He was crushed for your iniquity. This is the wage of your sin and it is death, and he paid the penalty and he died because he was God is capable of paying the full penalty of all of your guilt. And he rose now offers to you at sinless people, not good people, not perfect people, but sinners. He offers salvation freely and those who receive his penalty paying sacrifice on their behalf become one with him and are forgiven.

So the question is who is Jesus Christ who he is, then, defines what is able to do for you fully God fully man and he has the ability to fully be able die. He is fully able to redeem. He is fully able to forgive. He is fully able to return again and just as his first coming, which we celebrate happened with prophetic precision second coming will also literally take place fulfilling precisely the prophet's words. But back to the question.

Who is he to you. Who is he to you is he just a baby in a manger, is he a seasonal interruption.

Is he a warm feeling of temporary sanctification is he a nice man who was treated very cruelly by Roman soldiers put on a cross that he didn't deserve you happen to be in the midst if you're here is an unbeliever. People who come by God's grace to place their faith in this one who carry the weight of sin, paid the full penalty and rose again.

He is more or less than a baby is are living send Lord and we invite you today. Trust to place your face in the Scriptures to point us to the one who can redeem this virgin born fully man, fully God save well. I hope that this reminder that salvation lies in Jesus Christ alone has helped get your year off to a great start. This is wisdom for the hard were the Bible teaching ministry of Stephen Davey Stephen pastors colonial Baptist Church in Cary, North Carolina. Many of you are on our mailing list and you receive our monthly newsletter that we call heartbeat. If so, you've received our new Bible reading guide and I would encourage you to work your way through reading God's word with us in 2020, the first reading starts today and ends on December 31. As we read chronologically through God's word. Our office is closed today so we can't take phone calls but you could write to us and send us your name, email address and postal address and be sure and ask to be added to the heartbeat newsletter mailing list. You can also send us an email if you address it to if you prefer to send correspondence through the mail. Our address is wisdom for the heart PO Box 37297 Raleigh, NC 27627. That's all for today. Join us tomorrow for more wisdom for the heart

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