We are going to look at the birth of Yeshua and this will take some time to develop in detail because of what is called the “Lullaby Effect.” We have been so affected by movies, books, songs and false teachings that it has lulled us to sleep. We are not seeing what is in the Scriptures and it will tell a totally different story than what we have seen before. We are going to emphasize the fact that Yeshua was born at Sukkot and the Virgin Birth, with all the “technical” issues associated with it. There is a factor in the book of Jeremiah that will play a significant role in what happens and this is called the curse of Coniah.
Coniah was a king of Judah and he goes by several names, Jehoichin and Jeconiah. The last great king of Judah was Josiah, and he is killed at Megiddo by Pharaoh Neco. Jehoahaz is placed on the throne, and he is displaced after 3 months by Jehoikim, his half brother. He reigns 11 years, and the king of Babylon comes along and displaces him with Jehoikim’s son Jehoichin, and he reigns 3 months. The king of Babylon carries Jehoichin into captivity, and places his uncle (a full son of Josiah) Zedekiah on the throne, and he reigns 11 years. The king of Babylon comes back and destroys Jerusalem and the Temple, and Zedekiah tries to get away. He is caught by Nebuchadnezzar, and kills Zedekiah’s sons right in front of him, then puts out his eyes. There are no heirs and nobody to reign after him. So, the last king with sons is Jehoichin, but there is a problem. In Jer 22.28-30 it says, “Is this man Coniah a despised shattered jar? Or is he an undesirable vessel? Why have he and his descendants been hurled out and cast into a land that they have not known? O land, land, land, hear the word of the Lord, ‘Write this man down as childless (or just as if he was childless), a man who will not prosper in his days; for no man of his descendants will prosper (as a king) sitting on the throne of David or ruling again in Judah.'”
Judaism says God rescinded this curse, but we will see that he didn’t. We will see how this plays out in the birth of Yeshua later. So, let’s go back to Luke 1.26-33. This is important because when you read these verses she is saying that her son is going to be the Messiah. She asks a question in v 34 that is similar to Zechariah’s question because she is a virgin. The angel Gabriel, the same angel who dealt with Zechariah, says the Ruach ha Kodesh (the Holy Spirit) will overshadow her, and her son will be called “the Son of God” (v 35).
Remember, Gabriel was sent to Miriam in the sixth month of Elisheva’s pregnancy, around the time of Chanukah. Chanukah was called the “second Sukkot” and it was celebrated in the month of Kislev. We read that Miriam said in v 38 that “Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; be it done to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her. The angel already has told her how this was going to happen in v 35 and how she will be overshadowed by the power of the Most High. What Miriam said is exactly what she would have said when putting up a “sukkah” at Sukkot. On p. 813 of the Hertz Authorized Daily Prayer book we have the prayer that is said in the sukkah on the first night of Sukkot. It says, “May it be thy will, O Lord my God and God of my fathers, to let thy divine presence abide among us. Spread over us (“overshadow” like Gabriel said) the canopy (sukkat) of thy peace in recognition of the precept of the sukkah which we are now fulfilling, and whereby we establish in fear and love the unity of thy holy and blessed name. O surround us with the pure and holy radiance of the glory, that is spread over our heads as the eagle over the nest he stirreth up; AND THENCE BID THE STREAM OF LIFE FLOW IN UPON THY SERVANT (THY HANDMAID). And seeing that I have gone from my house abroad (Miriam left home-Luke 1.39), and am speeding the way of they commandments, m ay it be accounted unto me as though I had wandered far in they cause” and then it goes on. As you can see, there is a similarity to what Miriam says and what is said the first night in a sukkah.
Why is the angel pointing out that this is the sixth month (Kislev) of Elisheva’s pregnancy? The angel is giving us information relating to the time of his visitation to Miriam and Miriam was to go to Elisheva. But why? We will find out later. It says in Luke 1.38-39 that Miriam went to Elisheva “in haste.” Matt 1.18-23 says that she was betrothed to Joseph, and betrothal is the first stage of marriage, and then Matthew quotes Isa 7.14 saying this was going to fulfill that verse. But we have a problem. Many don’t believe in the Virgin Birth who are believers because they say it can be found in paganism. But we don’t see that as a problem because there are “counterfeit” stories of the truth. The enemy always tries to confuse the truth. The Virgin Birth is essential because of the curse of Coniah. No descendant of his will ever sit on the throne of David, and he is in the kingly line. So, let’s go back to Isa 7.14 and the word for “virgin” which is “almah” in Hebrew. In the Gesenius Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon of the Old Testament, p. 634, it says that “almah means a youthful spouse recently married. The notion of unspotted virginity is not that which this word conveys, for which the proper word is betulah.”
In other words, “almah” does not necessarily mean “virgin” but “young woman, ripe sexually, maid, newly married” and “betulah” means virgin. So, why was almah used? It had to be used because this passage has numerous fulfillment’s. In the peshat (literal), it was fulfilled in the time of Ahaz with Isaiah and his wife (Isa 7.10). Why did Ahaz need a sign? Because an alliance of kings from Ephraim and Aram (Syria) have allied against him (Judah). The Lord says, “Ask of me for a sign” and Ahaz refuses to test the Lord, so the Lord says it is one thing to test the patience of men, but don’t test the Lord (v 13). So, the Lord will give Ahaz a sign (7.14), and then this famous verse goes on. But, what we fail to notice is that there will be three fulfillment’s of this verse. The first fulfillment will be in the days of Ahaz, the eighth century BC. The second fulfillment will be with Yeshua, and the third fulfillment will be in the Day of the Lord because we see the term “in that day” used in v 18, 20, 21 and 23, and “in that day” is referring to the “day of the Lord” or the last 1000 years of the 7000 year plan of God. This time period is also called the Atid Lavo, Messianic Kingdom or Millenium. In the case of Yeshua, it will be a virgin birth. The only way we can get three fulfillment’s out of Isa 7.14 is by using the generic word “almah” which can mean “young woman” or “virgin” who is a young woman.
In Part 46, we will pick up here and continue with this concept and how it was fulfilled in the time of Isaiah and Ahaz. Then we will discuss what the sign was, how the curse of Coniah fits into this verse, and then how this relates to the birth of Yeshua at Sukkot.