Originally Posted by Liquesce
Since I'm not asking about the full scope of reasoning, and am asking about just that one element, it's relevant to my own question. I'm just curious why such an argument would ever come up, since I've always been of the impression that belief in the virgin birth only applied to later faiths ... Christianity, Islam, maybe Bahai (?).
"Hey, I've got this puzzle piece. It's the last piece to your puzzle, and I'm gonna use it to start my own game."
"Um, okay, I guess that's cool.. but what makes you think it's my puzzle piece?"
"Well, your missing piece is mostly blue, and so is this one."
"Yeah, but my missing piece has two straight edges because it's a corner-- yours doesn't have any."
"That's all right, it doesn't need any-- it's mostly blue, so it's definately from your puzzle."
"It's nice that it's blue and all, but it really can't be my puzzle piece. Have fun with it, all right?"
"But I told all my friends it was part of *that* puzzle! It's important to me that I can tell them it's the missing piece of your puzzle!"
"Dude, it *isn't.* It's not part of my puzzle at all. I don't really care what you do with it or what you call your game, but leave my puzzle out of your conversation."
In other words, it comes up because that's the argument-- that the product of a virgin birth is somehow of a particular line which can only be determined patrilineally.
Originally Posted by Smokering
I'm not sure what you mean by the bolded statement. As for Christian themes; yes, they are relevant. Christ took a sort of 'sola scriptura' view of the Old Testament, denouncing much of the Jewish oral tradition, which means that the text itself, not necessarily how it was interpreted by Jewish rabbis etc, is what should be used as the criteria for determining the Messiah. There is nothing in the text of the OT that states that the Messiah was of David's line in the sense that his human, physical father was patrilineally descended from David. While that is the obvious interpretation, given that Jesus was not expected to be God's Son, it is not the only interpretation. It is not, to my knowledge, Biblically mandated that descent must be patrilineal, especially in such an unusual circumstance. I'm interested in mamacita's mention of adoption, also.
What I mean is that the trouble with arguing with Christians about anything is that they come from a place of assuming that they're right, and then work backwards to prove those assumptions using whatever means are efficacious at the time.