Whetstone Ministries

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Daily Encouragements

BY BENNIE McWHA

December 23

ABCs of Christmas (V) – Matthew 1:23

Is your heart as pure as a virgin?

The “V” of Christmas is Virgin. This word can be used in various ways. A virgin forest is one where the trees have never been cut. Virgin olive oil is the result of the first pressing of the olives. Morally it indicates that such a person has not had any immoral experiences. No mater how it is used, virgin has the meaning of purity.

A vital part of the Christmas story is the fact that Jesus’ mother Mary was a virgin—morally pure. Gabriel gave her the news that she would give birth to a son. Mary replied, “How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?” (Luke 1:34). Gabriel told her, “With God nothing shall be impossible” (Luke 1:37).

Prophets foretold this event many years before it happened, saying, “Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us” (Matthew 1:23). Mary also had a pure heart before God. Even though she must have had difficulty comprehending what Gabriel said, she replied, “Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word” (Luke 1:38).

God chose Paul to become a missionary with the responsibility of telling as many people as possible about the Lord’s love for them. One place he did this was in Corinth, which was a very ungodly, morally impure place. Some of the people, who heard Paul’s teaching, trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ and had all of their sins forgiven. Paul wrote to them saying, “For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused [betrothed] you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ” (II Corinthians 11:2).

There is always a danger that “as the serpent beguiled [deceived] Eve through his subtilty [craftiness], so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ” (II Corinthians 11:3). Allow this Christmas season to remind you to always maintain your virginity—your purity—before God.