Hope of Israel Ministries (Ecclesia of YEHOVAH):
Purification and the Birth of the Messiah
The perpetual virgin theory is a creation of men, propagated first from paganism then through Catholicism and later through Protestantism. The rite of the purification of Mary is another Bible truth demonstrating to us the NATURAL birth of the Messiah by his mother, Mary. The truth to the whole matter is that Mary DID NOT have a virgin birth with the Messiah, nor was she a perpetual virgin. There is no place in the Scriptures that says such an event ever happened!
by HOIM Staff
After the birth of a child, a woman has a discharge, showing blood. This occurs for a short period of time and varies in days with the individual woman. The Jewish religion had numerous laws for blood uncleanliness and believed this to be an unclean period in a women's life during the showing of blood. If a man or woman showed or had done any unclean act, before that person could become clean again, they would have to go through a specified time period of separation for their cleansing.
As already mentioned, the showing of blood by a woman after the birth of a child required a separation period called "Purification" (cleaning). From the book of Leviticus, we read the requirements for child-birth in chapter 12, verses 2, 4-8,
"Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, If a woman have conceived seed, and born a man child: then she shall be unclean seven days; according to the days of the separation for her infirmity shall she be unclean. And she shall then continue in the blood of her purifying three and thirty days; she shall touch no hallowed thing, nor come into the sanctuary, until the days of her purifying, be fulfilled. But if she bear a maid child then she shall be unclean two weeks, as in her separation; and she shall continue in the blood of her purifying, threescore and six days. And when the days of her purifying are fulfilled, for for a son, or for a daughter, she shall bring a lamb of the first year for a burnt offering, and a young pigeon, or a turtle-dove, for a sin offering, unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, unto the priests who shall offer it before the LORD, and make an atonement for her; and she shall be cleansed from the issue of her blood. This is the law of her that hath born a male or a female. And if she be not able to bring a lamb, then she shall bring two turtles, or two young pigeons; the one for the burnt offering, and the other for a sin offering: and the priest shall make an atonement for her, and she shall be clean."
While speaking of the Temple rites concerning the presence of a woman for her purification after childbirth, it should be mentioned that the woman was not required to be physically present if her offering was given through a representative of the laity. The laity came from various districts, taking part daily in the Temple services. However, devoted mothers such as Mary -- the wife of Joseph -- who lived within a close distance of the Temple, would attend personally. As we have just read, a woman from the time of her giving birth was considered unclean -- if it was a boy for seven days, and with a girl it was fourteen days. Now during these days of her uncleanliness her husband was not to have intercourse with her. Her days in the blood of her purifying was a further thirty-three days for a boy, and sixty-six days for a girl. During the period of her purifying she would not be allowed to enter the Temple or any holy place -- nor touch anything holy.
Following is an excerpt from the bookFamily, written by the Jewish author Hayyim Schnied:
"Whereas most of childbirth is surrounded by folklore, one aspect, the sexual relations of the parents after childbirth, is dealt with extensively in the law codes. The basic law is stated in the Bible, and according to its literal meaning a woman is prohibited from having intercourse for seven days following the birth of a male child and for fourteen days if she gives birth to a girl. A further period of thirty-three days in the former instance and sixty-six days in the latter is laid down, these being the days of her purification, 'during which any blood seen is the blood of purification' when she is permitted to have relations with her husband. After the period of purification has elapsed, she must bring prescribed sacrifices....The law of sexual relations was preserved in the sages, who added, however, that any blood seen during the 'days of her purification' renders her prohibited to her husband and requires her, when the blood flow ceases, to immerse herself in the Mikveh (ritual bath) at which time she becomes clean."
This passage by Hayyim Schnied, was inserted in this article for further proof to show that the Jews did follow this course of "purification" of the woman after childbirth. This purification act deals strictly with the discharge of blood from a woman after child-birth.
The sacrificial offering for the purification rite of the mother was for the "sin offering for the Levitical defilement symbolically attaching to the beginning of life, and a burnt offering, that marked the restoration of communion with God" (by Alfred Edersheim, author of the book, Jesus The Messiah). The woman, after the completion of her time of Purification, could again enter into the holy places of the Temple having been cleansed. And it should again be quoted that a woman after childbirth is separated for the required time of whatever the sex of the child. Leviticus 12:2b, ".....according to the days of the separation for her infirmity..." Notice Leviticus 15:19 to 25:
"And if a woman have an issue, and her issue in her flesh be blood, she shall be put apart seven days: And whosoever toucheth her shall be unclean until the even. And every thing that she lieth upon in her separation shall be unclean: every thing also that she sitteth upon shall be unclean. And whosoever toucheth her bed shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the even. And whosoever toucheth any thing that she sat upon shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the even. And if it be on her bed, or on any thing whereon she sitteth, when he toucheth it, he shall be unclean until the even. And if any man lie with her at all, and her flowers be upon him, he shall be unclean seven days; and all the bed whereon he lieth shall be unclean. And if a woman have an issue of her blood many days out of the time of her separation, or if it run beyond the time of her separation; all the days of the issue of her uncleanness shall be as the days of her separation: she shall be unclean."
It would be profitable to you if you would continue to read on to verse 30. From the previous texts, we are told that during the time of a woman's uncleanness, she is totally separated -- even from her husband. It is hoped there is a better understanding to the reader of just what was involved in the rite of Purification for a woman after childbirth. We should now be able to visualize with a more understanding mind, Mary with her husband Joseph and their FIRST-BORN son making the trip to nearby Jerusalem (for they were still staying at Bethlehem during this period) for the required sacrificial offering for Mary's purification -- and also the redemption of their first-born son. She, in all likelihood, entered the Temple by the "Gate of the Women" into the "Court of the Women" and then she would have deposited in the third "Trumpet" (trumpet shaped chest) the price of the turtle doves, having been informed of the price by the superintending priest stationed by the Trumpet. Then, at a certain appointed time during the day, the organ sound declared that the incense would soon be kindled on the Golden Altar, for those who were to be purified. The purification-service would not last long and the women who had shared in the rite were now Levitically clean.
Mary, we know by scripture, went through the rite of Purification as every Jewish woman who has ever given birth to a child. But an important detail for our edification is the fact that this particular purification rite was for the showing of blood from child-birth. We should closely question the unsupported teaching of Mary having a virgin birth and maintaining a perpetual state of virginity the rest of her life. If she was a perpetual virgin -- and her womb had never parted for her to have had a natural birth -- then why did Mary go through her allotted time of Purification of 40 days upon bringing forth a son -- as written in Luke 2:22? "And when the days of her purification according to the law Moses were accomplished."
The truth to the whole matter is that Mary DID NOT have a virgin birth with the Messiah -- nor was she a perpetual virgin! There is no place in the entire Bible that says such an event ever happened. There may be a couple of verses in the Bible that may appear to indicate such a happening, but only because of mankind's ignorance of the Biblical laws and customs. As a result, they mistakenly interpret something into saying something that it is NOT saying at all!
The ideology of Mary being a perpetual virgin is just another one of the many fabricated stories by certain religious hierarchical authorities influencing their followers into believing that there IS something written in scripture of which -- we have already mentioned -- does NOT even appear in scripture. The reason why this happens in so many denominations is because their adherents accept their church's teachings without question or proof. A true Christian should heed the following: "...they received the word with all readiness of mind and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so" (Acts 17:11), "Prove all things, hold fast that which is good" (1 Thessalonians 5:21). If Mary did NOT have a natural birth in bringing forth the Messiah, then she would not have had an afterbirth, and if she had no afterbirth then she would have showed no blood at birth or after.
In fact, with Mary's supposed ever-virgin condition there was, in reality, not even a birth at all, because her womb did not part for the Messiah's delivery -- according to the ever-virgin doctrine! This would mean that the Messiah miraculously appeared outside the wall of the flesh without any disturbance to the uterus. But all this is an ILLOGICAL notion for anyone to believe because it is contrary to the written word of scripture -- which was spoken of the Messiah coming from the seed of David. Mary, according to the writer Luke, had finished her forty days of the blood of purification as it was required according to the law of Moses, and then Mary went up to the Temple and offered her sacrifice of two turtle doves.
Lastly, but not the least important point is Luke 2, verse 23:
"Every male that openeth, the womb shall be called holy to the LORD."
This is in reference to the first-born and this text follows the first half of Luke, verse 22, "Brought him to Jerusalem, to present him to the LORD." The perpetual virgin theory is a creation of men, propagated first from paganism then through Catholicism and later through Protestantism. But those who believe in the truth of YEHOVAH God's Word through the inspired writings of the scriptures, know that the rite of the purification of Mary is another Bible truth demonstrating to us the NATURAL BIRTH of the Messiah by his mother, Mary. There can be no truthful denial that Mary went through the Purification rite of child-birth, and therefore she had to have shown blood to have been cleansed from her affliction of child-birth -- according to the law of Moses of which she kept.
Hope of Israel Ministries -- Preparing the Way for the Return of YEHOVAH God and His Messiah!
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