Today was the first time I had heard the argument for Mary not really being a virgin. Well, not exactly, but it was the first time I had heard a specific reason for people to say that it wasn't so. Apparently the idea going around is that the original Aramaic and Hebrew word used for the prophecy found in Isaiah 7:14 meant "young  woman" or "maiden" and that "virgin" is a mistranslation. Seeing as the place I came across this information was on tumblr, which is hardly a reputable source, I did my own research.

The Hebrew word in question is הָעַלְמָה ha-al'mah.
I tried finding the Aramaic term, but that's proving to be more difficult.

There were a lot of articles that left out a ton of context, so here are a couple that really dig deep, using well rounded reasoning and sources.

Fight the Good Fight Blog: http://growinthespirit.blogspot.com/2013/11/the-meaning-of-hebrew-word-almah-or.html

Andrews University Publication: http://www.andrews.edu/~davidson/Publications/Messianic%20Prophecies/Messianic%20Hope%20in%20Isaiah.pdf

In the gospels it's not even a question that Mary is referred to as a virgin. Here's the Greek word.

παρθένος,n  \{par-then'-os}
1) a virgin  1a) a marriageable maiden  1b) a woman who has never had sexual intercourse with a man  1c) one's marriageable daughter  2) a man who has abstained from all uncleanness and whoredom  attendant on idolatry, and so has kept his chastity  2a) one who has never had intercourse with women

Sites used: Wiktionary, The Online Greek Bible, Bible Hub.

I'd like to find my own offline sources too. Sounds like a trip to the library.~

May edit this for other sources and updated info later.

The more I see of worldly views the more I am thankful to be a Christian. There is so much hate out there. Hate against races, genders, religions, and much more. Everyone thinks they have the answer, but so often it only creates more hate or redirects the hate elsewhere.

I appreciate God's law of love because He solves the problems without any hate at all. Everything is done in love.

35 Then one of them, which was a law-
maker, asked him a question, tempting him,
and saying,
36 Master, which is the great command-
ment in the law?
37 Jesus said unto him,
Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all
thy heart,
and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.

38 This is the first and great command-
ment.

39 And the second is like unto it,
Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.

40 On these two commandments hang
all the law and the prophets.


- Matthew 22:35-40

I am so thankful to serve a loving God.


What Next?

Sep. 20th, 2013 01:44 pm
I just finished reading through the minor prophets this morning and now I'm not sure where I want to go from there. The goal is to read everything I haven't read for myself before, but I may have reached the point where I read the whole bible. It would have been helpful to keep a list on hand to check off as I read, but regardless, I'm almost positive that I have read the whole bible at this point.

Perhaps I should start focusing on specific topics to study. That sounds like a good idea. Only......I wonder what topic I should start with......
If anyone is reading this they may be wondering how I can still be in the book of Ezekiel. Just let me clarify this. I jump between my Sabbath school lesson and reading chapters of the Bible. Once I get through one book of the Bible, I move on in order or sometimes randomly. That's what happened =).

Ezekiel 16 brought out the love of God for his people so beautifully. Reading it made me want to cry. I look at myself and I can identify with the children of Israel easily. Even though they were God's people they were constantly wandering away from Him. They were drawn to the things of the world. Even so, God loved them and did everything to try to help them one day meet Him.

In this chapter God compares the Israelites to a newborn baby that was abandoned in a field. She was unwanted and struggling in her blood. Then God came and took pity on the child and told her to "Live!". He raised her well and when she became mature and her beauty was pronounced, He covered her with His wing and swore an oath to her, that she would be His. Afterwards He gives her everything that is good for her. Unfortunately she seeks out the idols of the other countries and is never satiated with them. This was so sad. After reading of God's love for her and seeing her fall to temptation anyway, it was heartbreaking. At the same time I can't simply look at her as some loathsome being because I've done the same things. God said that she couldn't even be called a harlot because she wasn't being paid. She purposely went out to seek the company of these men (other countries). As for how this relates to me, there are plenty of things that take me away from my time with God. I have so many worldly desires. At least I've got it a little bit easier than Israel though. They were still under the old covenant at this time where they had to sacrifice lambs because Jesus hadn't died for them yet. It was a much harder time to live in. When Jesus died to save us, we were placed under the newer, better covenant that the old one pointed to. Thank God for that.

There are still a lot of areas of my life that I need to ask God to help me overcome so that I can completely dedicate myself to Him. It was impossible not to think of my own sinful nature when I read this chapter. I pray that God will become the center of my life.
The world of asexuality in the christian religion is fairly quiet as far as I can tell. Most times people seem to confuse it as celibacy and praise an asexual for their amazing self-control. That's about as far as it goes. However I have also heard stories here and there on the internet about people who have been put down for being a christian asexual. The main reason I keep seeing is that God told humanity to be fruitful and multiply, and that isn't what asexuals are doing.

Let me share something from my own experience. Both of my parents are Christians. My dad is the head elder of our church and is involved in many other ways. When I "came out" to my parents, neither of them made any sort of fuss. To this day I don't think they believe me, and are still waiting for grandchildren. I have to give my dad some credit though. When I was looking for answers in my bible about how God views asexuality, he pointed out a wonderful verse to me that I think fits quite well. Let me share it here with whoever may read this.

 10 His disciples said to Him, "If
such is the case of the man with his
wife, it is better not to marry."
 11 But He said to them, "All can-
not accept this saying, but only
those to whom it has been given:

 12 "For there are eunuchs who
were born thus from their mother's
womb, and there are eunuchs who
were made eunuchs by men, and
there are eunuchs who  have made
themselves eunuchs for the king-
dom of heaven's sake. He who is
able to accept it, let him accept it."

- Matthew 19:10-12 NKJV

This is only a part of a conversation between Jesus, the pharisees, and the disciples. The pharisees came to Jesus asking about whether a man can divorce his wife for any reason. For the full context I recommend reading from the beginning of Matthew chapter 19. Personally I like to see the context of a verse before I believe what someone tells me it means. Context can be everything.
What I got from these texts is that if a person needs that sexual intimacy, then they should look for a partner to be joined in marriage with. If a person can live without it in comfort, that is also acceptable. The problem comes in when people aren't joined together by God.
I understand that asexuals aren't eunuchs, but based off of these verses, I don't see how God could have any problem with us either. The way the word "eunuchs" is used in these verses also appears to me to refer to more than just people missing parts. It seems like Jesus is referring to various cases that cause people not to have sexual intercourse.

Well, that was my little biblical study on asexuality and Christians. I wish I had more, but even this small amount seems to sufficiently cover the material. It is my hope that fellow christian asexuals with similar questions to what I had will find this to be a useful resource.

God bless~
'They will throw their silver
  into the streets,
And their gold will be like
  refuse;
Their silver and their gold will
  not be able to deliver them
In the day of the wrath of the
  Lord;
They will not satisfy their
  souls,
Nor fill their stomachs,
Because it became their
  stumbling block of iniquity.'

- Ezekiel 7:15 NKJV

I wanted to find something a little sweeter, but Ezekiel isn't full of exceptionally sweet moments, and I'm reading my Bible in a certain order. However Ezekiel serves it's own purpose quite well, and sometimes serves as a type for events in Revelation. The verse above stood out to me because I can identify with it. I have a hard time with material possessions. The money itself isn't so bad, but it's what I do with the money. These people in the verse relied on their money to support themselves, and lost sight of God. Their silver and gold became their "stumbling block of iniquity". It's a sad outcome, but not an uncommon one. When the end of the world comes, I just hope that I will be right with God, and will have built up that relationship to the point that material wealth will not be where all my hopes and dreams lie.

Here's a parting gift to even things out a bit.

'Trust in the Lord with all
  your heart,
And lean not on your own
 understanding;
In all your ways acknowledge
 Him,
And He shall direct your
 paths.'

- Proverbs 3:5,6 NKJV

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