We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
As the Christmas trees come down and the holiday cheer is stored away, this from Mead:Born of a WHAT???
The specifically Christian idea of the Virgin Birth is one of the most controversial and confusing theological concepts around, and a Yuletide blog which didn’t take on the topic wouldn’t be doing its job.
The Christmas season extends at least to the Epiphany, and the decorations should stay up at least to then. If you go over to John C. Wright's Journal, you will find reasons to keep them up 'till early February.
You must be suffering from some residual Puritan guilt.
(not that I have ever had much trouble with the doctrine of the VIrgin birth, found it a great impediment to faith OR the measure of our Saviour's uniqueness. Jesus Himself was and is all the proof anyone needs. The rest (birth circumstances, miracles, etc.) are vivid examples of God's power breaking into the world and changing it, but not the measure of His unique role as Saviour. As an analogy, soldiers of good, bad and loathsome states can win a war, with acts of heroism and daring, but it takes the ones from a good state to liberate the concentration camps and feed starving kids. It's not the winning a war against a mighty adversary that is the proof that they are good, but what they do after they have won. Likewise, one can believe in the miracles (I do) and the Virgin Birth (I do, to the scorn of my rationalist relatives), but should not stay too hung up on them. They were, in a sense, the warm up band. Our real focus should be what God is continuing to do and wants us to do with Him now. That can sometimes be even more miraculous than a pregnant teenager in Nazareth or a blind man seeing again.
The Church should go with the times and announce proudly that Christ was born out of wedlock, to poor worker class parents, that Joseph was an exploited union member working for pitiful wages for The Man, Mary had an affair with God while being engaged to be married to Joseph, and Herod was an evil right wing conspirator wanting to oppress the lower classes.
They'll be instantly popular in Washington, Hollywood, Sacramento, and New York, the only places that count for the media and thus 90% of the population who get all their information and opinions from that media.
I don't remember the exact wording and I don't have a copy handy, but in The History of the Church Eusebius makes reference to First Century Christian savages that perpetuated the ridiculous notion the Jesus was the son of man and proved that any man could be a King.
These were the Christians that were fed to the lions, as it was well known at the time that only one of noble blood could be a King. Jesus had to be the Son of God for the story to work.