Journals out

New editions of The Heythrop Journal and New Blackfriars are now available (online), both including articles on the Virgin birth/conception, turning our gaze back to the sources in the inscripturated witness and its significance in the divine economy.

The Heythrop Journal (Volume 49, Issue 2, March 2008) includes the following articles:

In modern theology the doctrine of the Virgin Birth of Christ, including the doctrine of his Virginal Conception, has been the subject of considerable scepticism. One line of criticism has been that the traditional doctrine of the Virgin Birth seems unnecessary to the Incarnation. In this essay I lay out one construal of the traditional argument for the doctrine and show that, although one can offer an account of the Incarnation without the Virgin Birth which, in other respects, is perfectly in accord with catholic Christianity, such a doctrine is still contrary to the plain teaching of Scripture and the Creeds on the question of the mode of the Incarnation. It might still be thought that the Incarnation was an ‘unfitting’ means of Incarnation. In a final section I draw upon Anselm’s arguments in defence of the Incarnation to show that this objection can also be overcome.

Also, New Blackfriars has announced the following articles in their latest edition:

In Jeffrey Archer’s The Gospel According to Judas, Judas dismisses the virginal conception of Jesus as no more than another example of ‘Greek myths that tell of gods in heaven who produce offspring following a union with women of this earth’. To attribute such a view to a first-century Jew like Judas seems strange, since the earliest evidence shows Jewish critics of the Christian movement rejecting the virginal conception as a case of illegitimacy. In any case such Greek myths do not provide plausible sources for the two Gospel accounts of the virginal conception. Yet such merely historical debate is insufficient. One should press on to illustrate the religious significance and theological importance of the virginal conception within the whole story of Jesus: for instance, the role of this conception in revealing the Trinity at work for human salvation.

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