In his Christian Evidences column today on Forthright Magazine, our good brother John Henson writes,
Modernists wish to make Christ an ordinary man and not God our Savior (Titus 1:3, 4). To do this, they preach that while Jesus was a genius, he is just an ordinary man. In order to solidify their doctrine, the virgin birth is the first casualty.
John does a good job in few words of showing the importance of this essential doctrine. Without it, we’re all just a bunch of moralists, as was Dr. Barclay.
The virgin birth gives the lie to progressives who love to use 1 Cor. 15 to affirm that only the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ are the core of the gospel. Even though the passage itself does not lend itself to such a “core” interpretation, the absence of mention of the incarnation destroys their affirmation. Unless, of course, they deny the virgin birth, which is another ball of wax.
The incarnation is also the basis for mission. If Jesus became one of us, in order to save, he sends us in the same manner. “Even so,” he said, or as the NET puts it, “Just as” (John 20:21). We see it in Paul’s principle of becoming “all things to all people, so that by all means I may save some” (1 Cor. 9:19-22).
A friend of mine, who’s now a powerful evangelist used by the Lord, once told me that he had talked with one of the brotherhood’s well known figures in the US, who didn’t realize that Jesus was divine. I was speechless. We need more teaching about Jesus and the major facts and doctrines about his life. So John’s article is a welcome contribution, and recommended for careful study.