How did Christians get the doctrine of the virgin birth? Counter-apologist Paulogia says it was a mix of Matthew’s creativity and stupidity.
Paul and other critics say that Matthew was too quick to connect Jesus to the Old Testament, even if it caused him to get sloppy and make a fool out of himself. So to bolster Jesus’ Messianic credentials, he invented the virgin birth story. He did this by misreading the Greek version of Isaiah 7:14, which does use the word virgin or parthenos in Greek. But the original Hebrew passage wasn’t referring to a virgin at all, but a young woman. If Isaiah was prophesying a virgin birth, he would have used the more precise word bethulah, not almah. Matthew assumed the word meant virgin. His ignorance led to the doctrine of the virgin birth of Jesus. Or so the story goes.
But is Paulogia and some of the other critics right? No. If there’s anyone misreading the text here, I believe it’s Paulogia.
Erik is a Reasonable Faith Chapter Director located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He’s a former freelance baseball writer and the co-owner of a vintage and handmade decor business with his wife, Dawn. He is passionate about the intersection of apologetics and evangelism.