- ‘Born’ and ‘Come’ of women
‘Born’ of women in Matthew 11:11, regarding the entering into the world of John the Baptist, his parents Zacharias and Elizabeth, is the translation of the word gennetois (see also Luke 7:28) which Liddell & Scott [American Edition 1854] say is derived from gennaw (the ‘w’ is omega, a long ‘o’). Bible hub says that gennetois is an adjective and is the dative, plural masculine.
Liddell & Scott gives the meaning ‘to beget’ for the verb gennaw and ‘begotten’ for the adjective gennetois. Thayer [2nd Edition 1958] agrees completely with Liddell & Scott in this regard.
Of Jesus, Paul says that he is genomenon of woman, Galatians 4:4. Bagster’s Analytical Lexicon says this is the accusative, singular, masculine and neuter, participle, aorist 2 of the verb ginomai, to come or to become.
Jesus, here in Galatians 4:4, is ‘come’ of woman but not, here, ‘begotten’ of woman.
- ‘Begotten’ - naturally - of woman
Jesus says, recorded in John 16:21, that ‘a woman … in travail … hath sorrow … but as soon as she is delivered (tikto) of the child she remembereth no more the anguish for joy that a man is begotten (gennaw) into the world’. Note : delivery first, results in a begetting.
Luke records the birth of John the Baptist in Luke 1:57 ‘Now Elisabeth’s full time came that she should be delivered (tikto) and she brought forth (gennao) a son.
In both the above cases the delivery of the child and the cutting of the cord result in a new, independent entity being in the world. This is called a begetting. Delivery first, results in a begetting.
- The Only Begotten Son of God
When the concept of begetting is mentioned of Jesus, it is in connection with his Father in heaven.
For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son (monogenes) [John 3:16 KJV]
Both Luke (2:7) and Matthew (1:25) record that ‘Mary … brought forth (tikto) the son of her, the prototokos. Neither evangelist states that this is a ‘begetting’.
Prototokos does not mean, intrinsically, ‘firstborn’. The root tokos means ‘usury’ see Matthew 25:27 and Luke 19:23, and the translation of prototokos should reflect that root meaning.
Of Jesus’ conception it is heralded by the angel Gabriel that
… thou shalt conceive in thy womb … and bring forth (tikto) a son … [Luke 1:31 KJV]
… the conception … the begetting (gennao) holy shall be called Son of God … [Luke 1:35 KJV]
This second reference, Luke 1:35, describes the result of :
… the Holy Spirit shall come upon thee
… the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee
The result of these two divine influences and activities - is that a begetting is present in the womb of the virgin. And this begetting is prior to a delivery taking place.
A new individual entity is already present in the world, prior to the delivery of a child.
Likewise, in Matthew’s record (1:20), the angel informs Joseph in a dream that ‘that which in her is begotten (gennaw) of Spirit is holy’. Again, there is a new individual entity in the world, already. But she is not yet tikto, delivered.
This is not a natural birth. It is supernatural.
Luke records (2:1) that ‘Jesus having been begotten (gennaw) in Bethlehem …’. Now we know that Mary was already great with child, Luke 2:4 and 5, when Joseph and she journeyed from Nazareth to Bethlehem. Her conception occurred in Galilee.
There was a begetting within her, by virtue of her conception. This results in a begetting in Bethlehem. But it is still not attributed to Mary.
It is not said that Jesus is ‘begotten of Mary’, only that ‘having been begotten’ in Bethlehem. The wording is most careful. There is a definite avoidance, in all of these scriptures, of stating that Jesus was ‘begotten’ of Mary. It is just not there.
Nowhere is Jesus said to be ‘begotten’ of Mary.
He is ‘come’ of woman, Galatians 4:4.
He, himself, is the only begotten Son - of God.