A good question: What do you make of the virgin birth?

AGQ Virgin birthWhat do you make of the virgin birth? Fact or fable? And either way, what is it all about? This December, Reform’s ‘A good question’ panel get to grips that bit of Christmassy theology.

The panel features the Revd Matt Stone, Minister of Herringthorpe United Reformed Church (URC), Rotherham, South Yorkshire; Lawrence Moore, Mission and Discipleship Consultant for the URC’s North Western Synod and founder of iChurch – a URC service that resources local churches and helps them get online; The Revd Carla A Grosch-Miller, a URC Minister and practical theologian, educator and poet; and Anjum Anwar, a teacher who also worked as Dialogue Development Officer for Blackburn Cathedral from 2007 to 2016.

One question four answers

Matt Stone
“I once heard a preacher say: “Jesus is not a ‘chip off the old block’. Jesus is the ‘old block’. That phrase has stuck with me, and it explains why I believe the virgin birth is so important ... Most objections to the virgin birth are along the lines that virgins don’t generally have babies.”

Carla A Grosch-Miller
“… One year, while preaching, almost as an aside, I said something to the effect that believing in the virgin birth need not be a stumbling block; it was adiaphora, not essential to faith. From a back row of that cavernous space, an older woman shouted: ‘Thank God!’”

Lawrence Moore
“The mystery and miracle of Christmas is that the baby who is born is no one less than God come among us in human form – fully human, and fully divine.”

Anjum Anwar
“As Muslims, it is incumbent on us to believe in the virgin birth of Jesus. The first miracle mentioned in the Qur’an is the infant Jesus defending his mother and speaking prophecy …”

These are extracts from an article that was published in the December 2019/January 2020 edition of Reform, the United Reformed Church's magazine.

Read more of these extracts here, or subscribe to the magazine here.

Picture: A dipiction of Mary/Brent Clark
Published: 17 December 2019