This discussion of the virgin birth is to somewhat counter the position taken by Pageau discussing the symbolism that must, apparently, be understood as necessary for understanding the virgin birth. And although I agree with his lengthy, almost mathematical, detailing of the virgin birth, I would point out an important thing—maybe the most—that is crystal clear in the scriptures, but hardly focused on when it is discussed outside of them; and that is that God came into the world in a strange combination of the pure and the scandalous. And that it was precisely more scandalous, because it was most pure.
When God chose to come to us, he chose, not merely to arrive humble, but arrive humiliated. We laugh with Sarah, the mother of Nations, but we do not leer at her. There may have been the odd, angelic instruction to Sampson’s father about how to avoid scissors, but not one about how to avoid scandal.
I might not exactly say that I would have preferred for God to be born of the virgins, Larry and Mary—I don’t know exactly what I would’ve preferred; maybe for God to have been borne on an astroid-bassinet like baby superman, or maybe brought to a doorstep with a lightening scar on his forehead—but, and this is precisely the point, even though I might not say I would have preferred the story to start with little Larry, Jr., I can say I would have preferred it to start with a little less scandal.
I may be more or less familiar with the innocent gazes turned toward babes left on doorsteps, but I know all too well the invectives hurled at a fatherless boy and his unwed mother.
But God, knowing this and infinitely more, by his choice and will, preferred to counterpoise the purity of his birth against the scandal of it.