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OLD TESTAMENT

Deuteronomy 30:15-20 Darby (15)
See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil, (16) in that I command thee this day to love Jehovah thy God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his ordinances, that thou mayest live and multiply, and that Jehovah thy God may bless thee in the land whither thou goest to possess it. (17) But if thy heart turn away, so that thou wilt not hear, but shalt be drawn away, and thou shalt bow down to other gods and serve them; (18) I denounce unto you this day that ye shall surely perish; ye shall not prolong your days upon the land whereunto thou passest over the Jordan to possess it. (19) I call heaven and earth to witness this day against you: life and death have I set before you, blessing and cursing: choose then life, that thou mayest live, thou and thy seed, (20) in loving Jehovah thy God, in hearkening to his voice, and in cleaving to him--for this is thy life and the length of thy days--that thou mayest dwell in the land which Jehovah swore unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them.

NEW TESTAMENT

Matthew 5:17-20
Darby Think not that I am come to make void the law or the prophets; I am not come to make void, but to fulfil. (18) For verily I say unto you, Until the heaven and the earth pass away, one iota or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law till all come to pass. (19) Whosoever then shall do away with one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of the heavens; but whosoever shall practise and teach them , *he* shall be called great in the kingdom of the heavens. (20) For I say unto you, that unless your righteousness surpass that of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no wise enter into the kingdom of the heavens.

Note
The message from Moses is the same in the Gospel because in general the Gospel highlights Moses to establish Jesus. Also, the venue had changed. Moses no longer resides in Israel only. Moses had gone out of Zion (Isaiah 2:3) to the world. We are at the final leg of the human intelligence (HI) experience tragedy. Enough has been proven to Heaven. Hence, the New Testament speaks of the Kingdom of God. We still have to choose between life and death. 

Deuteronomy 30:11-15 LEB
(11)  "For this commandment that I am commanding you today is not too wonderful for you, and it is not too far from you. (12)  It is not in the heavens so that you might say, 'Who will go up for us to the heavens and get it for us and cause us to hear it, so that we may do it?' (13)  And it is not beyond the sea, so that you might say, 'Who will cross for us to the other side of the sea and take it for us and cause us to hear it, so that we may do it?' (14)  But the word is very near you, even in your mouth and in your heart, so that you may do it. (15)  "See, I am setting before you today life and prosperity and death and disaster;

AN EXAMPLE OF REAL LIFE APPLICATION OF BIBLICAL CRITICAL REASONING 


What is a virgin in the Bible?

For example, did Mary give birth to Jesus and still remain a virgin?  (You can get to understand the Bible by also considering related biblical cases on the controversial topic).

Any female can be a virgin at any age. Virginity does not, thus, necessitate a youg woman. An older than a young woman who never had sex is also a virgin. 

The King James Version (KJV) of the Bible does not faithfully render the idea of virginity and of a young woman. Of Rebekah, we read:

Genesis 24:16 KJV
(16)  And the damsel was very fair to look upon, a virgin [bethulah, in Hebrew], neither had any man known her: and she went down to the well, and filled her pitcher, and came up.
Genesis 24:43 KJV
(43)  Behold, I stand by the well of water; and it shall come to pass, that when the virgin [almah, in Hebrew] cometh forth to draw water, and I say to her, Give me, I pray thee, a little water of thy pitcher to drink;

With bethulah, there is the qualifier that she had not had sex yet (Leviticus 21:3). With almah who went to draw the water there is no mention of sexual experience. Thus, almah refers to a young female, not a virgin. Once Rebekah marries and has sex, she remains an almah, not a bethulah anymore.

What was the case for the mother of Jesus?

We read her story as a virgin from a Greek translation. Was she a 'bethulah' or an 'almah'? Of Mary, we read:

Luke 1:26-27 KJV
(26)  And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth,
(27)  To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary.

The Greek has its own word for 'virgin'. We read also that Matthew quoted Isaiah to infer the birth of Jesus as Immanuel (God with us, therefore, YHWH  with us) and understood that almah means instead virgin and not a young woman in general.

Isaiah 7:14 KJV
(14)  Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin (almah) shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

Rebekah was referred to as an 'almah' when she went to draw water, not as a 'bethulah' who never had sex. At this stage in the story, we cannot say that an 'almah' is necessarily another word for 'bethulah' but we get the idea that the 'almah' has not had sex yet. So, Rebekah, at this stage, had not lost her 'bethulah'. At this stage, she is an 'almah bethulah', a temporary virgin.

When Angel of YHWH met Mary, was she a 'bethulah', an 'almah' or an 'almah bethulah'?

We read that at the news that she was going to have a baby, she pressed Angel of YHWH by pointing out to Him:

Luke 1:34 KJV
(34)  Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?

So, according to Luke 1:34, Mary was not etymologically the 'almah' of Isaiah 7:14, any woman who could have had sex already, but an 'almah bethulah', a woman who had not have sex yet. In other words, Mary was a 'bethulah' who had not had sex yet, like the Rebekah who went to draw water, even though she was attributed by prophecy to have been an 'almah' of Isaiah 7:14.

Now, did Mary give as a Virgin? Of course, because at the time labor she had not had sex yet. Did Mary lose her 'bethulah' while giving birth to Jesus?

The vagina has the ability to stretch out to let the baby out and go back to its normal state after the baby is born. Does the hymen necessarily rupture during the stretching to give birth?

Think about it. 

Did Mary have other children? Of course!


Matthew 12:46-47 LEB 
And while he was still speaking to the crowds, behold, his mother and brothers were standing there outside, desiring to speak to him.  (47)  And someone told him, "Behold, your mother and your brothers are standing there outside desiring to speak to you."


John 7:1-9 LEB 
And after these things Jesus was going about in Galilee. For he did not want to go about in Judea, because the Jews were seeking to kill him.  (2)  Now the feast of the Jews—the feast of Tabernacles—was near.  (3)  So his brothers said to him, "Depart from here and go to Judea, so that your disciples also can see your works that you are doing.  (4)  For no one does anything in secret and yet he himself desires to be publicly recognized. If you are doing these things, reveal yourself to the world!"  (5)  (For not even his brothers believed in him.)  (6)  So Jesus said to them, "My time has not yet come, but your time is always ready.  (7)  The world cannot hate you, but it hates me, because I am testifying about it, that its deeds are evil.  (8)  You go up to the feast. I am not going up to this feast, because my time is not yet completed.  (9)  And when he had said these things, he remained in Galilee.

Are there people who still believe that Mary never had sex or other children and died a virgin, even though the New Testament says otherwise? Of course.

Did the Apostles take wives? Yes. All, but Paul.

1 Corinthians 9:2-5 LEB  If to others I am not an apostle, yet indeed I am to you, for you are my seal of apostleship in the Lord.  (3)  My defense to those who examine me is this:  (4)  Do we not have the right to eat and drink?  (5)  Do we not have the right to take along a sister as wife, like the rest of the apostles and the brothers of the Lord and Cephas?


If the analysis makes sense to you and you understand it, this is the way to approach any doctrine in the Bible. You think critically about it. YHWH God welcomes critical thinking:

Isaiah 1:16-18 KJV 
Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;  (17)  Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.  (18)  Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

Are you ready to reason with God in your quest to be Bible literate? You choose a topic, a behavior in real life, and you run it through the codes of the Bible for soundness and righteousness, because we act, think as we hear, as we are accustomed to. When Messiah YHWH Yeshua (or Christ the Lord Jesus) knocks at the door of your heart and you let Him in, the discussion has to be reasonable (Isaiah 1:18), specially when you know there are peddlers who also knock at the door of your heart:

For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ.  (2 Corinthians 2:17 KJV)

DOES MOSES STILL ADVOCATE KEEPING VIRGINITY BEFORE MARRIAGE?

Deuteronomy 22:20-21 Brenton
(20) But if this report be true, and the tokens of virginity be not found for the damsel;
(21) then shall they bring out the damsel to the doors of her father's house, and shall stone her with stones, and she shall die; because she has wrought folly among the children of Israel, to defile the house of her father by whoring: so thou shalt remove the evil one from among you.

Depending on the culture where you live today, a woman can be laughed at if she reveals that she is still a virgin. Moses is laughed at also because modern citizenry, depending on your culture, promotes sexual freedom. The question is 'if you are a believer in YHWH God [Jesus], is virginity optional in His eyes, in keeping up with Moses'? Remember that Jesus says Moses cannot be changed until all is fulfilled. Is virginity fulfilled on the cross? The only kind of law or command that is no longer binding in Moses is the sacrificial law and the necessary drastic enforcement for breaking the rules of the Law (aka Torah). The deterrent  in Israel for a daughter to remain virgin until married was death by stoning. Moses does not call for enforcement of its rules outside of Israel. Jesus upheld that rule when He told the adulteress woman to go and sin no more.

Still, is virginity optional?
The simple answer is that a woman who is a believer is expected to follow any rule of conduct in Moses, even keeping her virginity.

Matthew 5:18 LEB
(18)  For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not one tiny letter or one stroke of a letter will pass away from the law until all takes place.

The Bible is mainly about behaviour. Any behavior can be cross-referenced and sanctioned through Moses.

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