THE HOLY SPIRIT AND DNA IN THE INCARNATION OF JESUS
By: Frank Tunstall
“The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God” (Luke 1:35-36, NIV).
King David is the prophet who foretold the Heavenly Father has a Son (Psalm 2:7). The process is fascinating that brought about Jesus’ birth a thousand years after David’s prophecy. The angel Gabriel told Mary, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So, the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God” (Luke 1:35; Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23).
The incarnation of Jesus, defined as God becoming a man, has to be one of the greatest miracles of all time. Mary was a virgin and Joseph had “no union with her until after she gave birth” to Baby Jesus (Matthew 1:5). This “overshadowing” that Luke described, in contemporary language applies to the DNA – the genetic structure, and the chromosomes – supplied by a father in conception. In Jesus’ case, they had to be miraculously created.
DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) is a microscopic-sized molecule that holds the instructions an organism needs in order to develop, live healthily, and reproduce. In this sense, DNA is the discovery of the building blocks of life, showing how God did it. These directives are found inside every human cell, and are handed down from parents to children. A full set of genes, known as the genome, includes some 3.2 billion base pairs of DNA. Said another way, the DNA replicated from the union of two parent’s cells give the commands for a lifetime of orderly growth and development. Johannes Kepler (1571 – 1630), a German scientist, astronomer and mathematician, and a trained Lutheran theologian, would view it as thinking the thoughts of God after him.
With this in mind, what would have been the father’s contribution to Baby Jesus’ genetic system had to be perfectly formed in a creative miracle with its billions of microscopic parts fitting harmoniously into the nucleus of a single cell. It also had to be activated in Mary’s womb for the conception of Jesus to take place. Only then could the Son of God be truly born sinless as Mary’s Baby, move into the neighborhood of Adam’s seed, and grow up as the Son of Man and the God-Man.
Wow! Only God could do it.
A person cannot be a Christian without believing in miracles, and the birth of Jesus lives to this day as one of the five greatest miracles of all time. It discloses the power and divine intelligence revealed in the miracle of the creation, as well as Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection, His ascension, and the gift of the Holy Spirit.is of the
When the angel Gabriel made the announcement to Mary, she sought more information, giving Gabriel a lesson in Biology 101: “How will this be since I am a virgin?” (Isaiah 7:14). Gabriel responded with his own lesson in Theology 101: “Nothing is impossible with God!” (Luke 1:34-38).
Ah! Like Mary, we are to release our impossibilities to the Lord.
We can only begin to imagine, however, the power and genius required to conceive a child without a sexual union. But God is the Creator of DNA, and in the thousands of years since God made Adam, and then Eve, the DNA plan has worked billions of times.
At the incarnation of Jesus, the Holy Spirit did it again – worked to perfection too.
Modern science’s discovery of DNA has unveiled how God did it, revealing the divine genius behind the creation of DNA. But that discovery, great as it is, remains a far, far cry from being able to create it.
Science can explain the what, but not the who; it cannot introduce us to the divine genius who created it and makes it work, generation after generation, millennium after millennium, amid all ethnicities and peoples around the world.
Indeed, if it were possible to get the world’s top 100 scientists into the world’s best equipped lab and give them the assignment to create the building blocks of life that are compressed into each of a person’s invisible billions of cell nuclei they would be like Nebuchadnezzar’s wise men: “What the king asks is too difficult. No one can reveal it to the king except the gods, and they do not live among men” (Daniel 2:11). The Babylonian wise men were at least partly right, only God. They were also very wrong, not gods, but the one God who is a Trinity of three-in-one-and-one-in-three, He could create it, and He did!
As you ponder the incarnation of Jesus, let yourself consider the sovereign dominion of the Holy Spirit that was required to make it all happen. When you have absorbed the miracle of the incarnation, you will have no trouble believing Gabriel had it right: “nothing is impossible with God.” Nor will you shrink back from believing each of the other great miracles of the Bible.
The implications are far reaching. God created DNA first in His formation of Adam, then in Eve, making each of the two genomes compatible, but also different. The DNA of Adam connected with the DNA of Eve so that Eve gave birth to their first-born child. The plan worked, and has never needed to be repaired, even though Adam and Eve did not know why. Eve understood enough to give God the honor, however. “With the help of the Lord,” she said, “I have brought forth a man.”
When the time came for the heavenly Father to send His Son into the world in an incarnation, truly as a man, Jesus could not be born as a union of husband and wife, for then He would have been Adam’s son. For the miracle of the incarnation to take place the Holy Spirit had to duplicate the DNA that united with Mary in her womb. Only then could the Baby be both a man and God’s sinless Son. This understanding gives new and fresh meaning to Paul’s teaching that Jesus Christ is the last Adam, a lifegiving Spirit (1 Corinthians 15:45). An angel told Joseph, who was engaged to marry Mary, not to be afraid to take Mary as his wife, because her pregnancy was of God. o
Mary made a trip south to the hill country of Judea to visit with her relative, John the Baptist’s mother, who was in her sixth month.
Mary made a second trip south to Bethlehem a few months later, this time with Joseph, when she was “great with child” (Luke 2:5). Baby Jesus was born on that trip in a Bethlehem cave that served as a cattle stable.
The grand miracle of the incarnation had become history.