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"Hear O' Israel, HaShem is our G-d, HaShem alone"

Isaiah 7:14


The missionaries will say that Isaiah 7:14 "proves" that the Messiah, whom they believe to be the Immanuel (meaning the L-RD is with you) refered to here, must be born of a virgin. They will quote the verse as saying: "Therefore the L-RD Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call his name Immanuel." They may then point out that in the New Testament Matt. 1:18-25; Luke 1:26-38 say that Jesus was born of a virgin and that the angel said to have spoken to Mary greeted her (Luke 1:28) by saying "Greetings, you who are highly favored! The L-RD is with you." Matthew even quotes the Isaiah 7:14 verse when talking to Mary.

The Reply is that the New Testament quotes can prove nothing to a Jew. We must examine the Tanach, the Jewish Scriptures. That being said the Hebrew word almah (the word used in the passage above) means young woman or maiden, not virgin. This is reinforced that the word alma is translated as parthenos in the Septuagent, a word that we are told also means virgin. Yet Jacob's daughter Dinah was refered to as a parthenos after being raped by Shechem. She was most certainly not a virgin after the rape, and yet she was a young woman, after being raped. The Hebrew word for virgin is b'tulah in every case.

Secondly, there is a ha (meaning the) in frount of the word almah, hence it should say "the maiden" or " the young woman", not "a" as in the Christian translation. Even the NIV (another Christian translation) realizes virgin is a mistranslation, though they try to explain themselves out of it anyhow.

Now, considering the sign was for Ahaz (context, context, context), who lived centuries before Jesus was born, it could not mean Jesus. It would not be much of a sign to Ahaz if it did not occur when Ahaz was alive. Additionally, since it says "THE young woman", the woman in question must have been known by Ahaz, and possibly present at the time of the prophecy. Considering that Isaiah named two other of his sons symbolic names, it is highly possible that the young woman in question was none other than Isaiah's own wife. Finally, Jesus was named Jesus, not Immanuel.


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