Sunday, December 09, 2012

Luke 1:26-33 - What the Virgin Birth Did

Sandro Botticelli's Annunciation, painted from...
Sandro Botticelli's Annunciation, (1489-1490). (Wikipedia)
“Fear not!” That’s what the angel said to Mary. That’s what the angel said to Joseph. That’s what the angel said to the shepherds. “Do not fear.” “Don’t be scared.”  And that is important. It is very important. In this season of the year, there is an important doctrine that we often overlook in all the celebration that gives us freedom from fear.

It is called the Virgin Birth. And it has been an important-enough doctrine to be held with confidence by the Church for 1850 years and then important enough for Enlightenment liberals to vilify, negate, downplay, and impugn for the last 160. A main argument used against the Virgin Birth is its supposed insignificance and even irrelevance, but the fact that liberal theologians make it their punching bag betrays the reality that the Virgin Birth is important.

Let’s look at this vital, but for some people controversial, doctrine today by reading the following passage.

Pray & Read:  Luke 1:26-38 (A sermon in two parts, Luke 1:34-38 to be posted separately).
Key Truth: Luke wrote Luke 1:26-38 to teach believers that the Virgin Birth happened without the agency of a man, was free of the corruption of sin, established Christ’s Davidic ancestry, his identity as the Last Adam and the last heir to David’s throne.
Key Application: Today I want to show you what God’s Word says about the Virgin Birth.

Sermon Points:
1.   The Virgin Birth established Jesus’ ancestry from David (Luke 1:26-27)
2.   The Virgin Birth established Jesus as the Last Adam (Luke 1:28-31)
3.   The Virgin Birth established Jesus as the Last Royal Davidic heir (Luke 1:32-33)


a.   “to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David.”
b.   Luke 1:27 - Mary is a parthenos (virgin), a young unmarried girl 12-15 years old. She is bound by legal marriage contract to wed Joseph (of the house of David) yet still living with her family. While no physical contact was permitted, Mary was still considered Joseph’s wife. She is troubled (NKJV) perplexed (NIV) (διεταράχθη) (Luke 1:29) because she had not yet known a man (Luke 1:34), much different from Zechariah who was deeply shaken and terrified at Gabriel’s appearance (Luke 1:12). But the Holy Spirit would overshadow her (Luke 1:35; 9:34; Matt 1:18-23; Isaiah 32:15; same verb used in Acts 1:8; Num 10:34 in LXX; ).
c.   APPLICATION: Favor is connected with simple trust in God’s faithfulness. Zecharias the priest asked the angel for a sign (Luke 1:18). Mary the virgin girl of Galilee submits in simple faith to the Lord.
d.   Gabriel follows the typical OT birth announcement structure, especially Isaiah 7:14: Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.
                      i.    His name would be Yeshua, Joshua, Jesus – “YWHH is salvation” v. 31.
                    ii.    He would be great, a title generally reserved in Scripture for God Himself v. 32.
                  iii.    He would be called “Son of the Most High” v. 32. Most High is Greek translation of Hebrew name El Elyon “God Most High.”  And Lord God from YHWH Elohim “YWHH God,” found in Genesis 1-2.He will sit on David’s Throne v. 32. “Throne of his Father David” v. 32 – Straight from Davidic Covenant 2 Samuel 7; Psalm 89) Language of v. 32-33 derives from 2 Samuel 7:12-16 and identifies this baby as the Mighty God of Isaiah 9:6-7, clearly a divine title. Father-Son relationship with God as promised to David (Luke 1:35). 
Jesus was a true descendant of David through his mother, Mary, and her ancestor, Nathan, a son of David (Luke 3:23-31; 1 Chron. 3:5; Rom 1:3; 2 Tim. 2:8). Luke gives Mary’s lineage through her father Heli (Luke 3:23). Matthew gives Joseph’s royal lineage through Solomon (Matt. 1:6-16) and shows Jesus’ legal connection to Joseph through Mary. Because of his legal connection with Joseph, the lineal heir to David’s throne, and his blood relation to David through his mother, Mary (Luke 3:23-31), the Lord Jesus is the last dynastic heir to David’s throne and the only one who can rule Israel with God’s blessing (Luke 1:30-33)
f.    APPLICATION: God always keeps His promises. Gabriel’s announcement to Mary was the fulfillment of a promise made 900 years earlier to King David. Jesus would reign forever on His father David’s throne.
g.   APPLICATION: FEAR NOT! Because Christ’s conception established his ancestry from David, you can be confident in the reliability of the Scriptures and the strength of God’s commitment to his own promises.  

a.   you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son”
b.   By his Incarnation (coming in the flesh) Jesus became the Last Adam. Just as Adam was the leader, pattern, and federal head of the flow of sinfulness down into humanity, Jesus became the leader, pattern and federal head of a new humanity of saved people who have been redeemed from the pattern of the first Adam (Rom 5; 1 Cor. 15:22, 45-49; 2 Cor 5:17; Eph. 2:10).
c.   The purpose of this divine, creative work in believers is to make a people in the image of God’s Son (Rom 8:29; Phil 3:20-21; 1 John 3:2).

d.   APPLICATION: FEAR NOT! Because of Jesus’ conception establishing his identity as the Last Adam, you can have confidence that your sins are paid in full and that by identifying with him, your punishment for sin is voided.

a.   “Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David.”
b.   Jesus’ virgin birth made it possible for Him to rule one day from David’s throne over Israel (Matt 2:2; 2 Sam 7:12-17; Luke 1:32-33). The Davidic Covenant (2 Sam 7:12-17) was transmitted through Solomon and his posterity (2 Chron 28:4-7; Matt 1:1-16, 20).
c.   But a curse on the descendants of Jehoiakim stood in the way. King Jehoiakim burned the Word of God, and God decreed that none of his descendants would ever sit or prosper on the throne (Jer. 36:30). The curse was repeated to his son Jehoiachin (Coniah), the last king of Judah of David’s royal dynasty (Jer. 22:30).
d.   By a virgin conception, Jesus avoided this divine curse and received full title to David’s throne through Joseph, his foster father. Jesus did not come under divine judgment because he was not Joseph’s biological son. But being Joseph’s eldest legal son, he inherited title to David’s throne.

e.   APPLICATION:  FEAR NOT! Because Christ’s conception established his identity as the last heir to David’s Throne, you can be confident in Christ’s Second Coming, the establishment of his eternal kingdom, and his setting right the injustices in this world.