Silly objections to miracles
There are actually some good arguments against miracles, but today, I just want to talk about some bad ones. These aren't objections to miracles in general; they are objections to specific miracles in the Bible.
The occurence of miracles in the Bible is a serious obstacle to faith for some people. Imagine, though, that there were no miracles in the Bible at all. Recall from a previous entry that I defined a miracles as an event in the natural world whose cause is not natural. Any direct act of God in the natural world, then, is a miracle. If God never acted in nature, though, there'd be no reason to be a Christian. I don't see how Christianity could exist if God never acted in nature. Isn't that ironic? If God doesn't act in nature, then we should forget about Christainity, but if God does act in nature, and the Bible records it, then we should forget about the Bible.
Anyway, back to the topic. Since Christmas just happened, I might as well use the virgin birth as an example. When a person objects to this event on the basis that virgins do not give birth, they're essentially objecting to the fact that it's a miracle, and miracles don't happen. So their objection is really to miracles in general, and the virgin birth is just an example of a miracle. But some people will accept that there could be miracles, and they object to the virgin birth for a different reason. But given their acceptance of miracles in general, this objection seems completely silly to me.
The objection is that Jesus was male. You see, to get a male, the father has to contribute a Y chromosome. Women don't have Y chromosomes. But if Mary was a virgin when she conceived, then there was no father to contribute a Y chromosome. With no Y chromosome, Jesus should have been female. The fact that he was male proves that Mary was not a virgin.
Do I even have to point out the silliness of this argument? If a person accepts that the virgin birth could have happened as long as Jesus turned out to be female, then the person has accepted that miracles can happen. If miracles can happen, then God can act in nature. If God can act in nature, then why couldn't he create a Y chromosome? If God created life to begin with, one measly little Y chromosome is going to be no problem for him. I suppose a person could say that God is powerful enough to produce a virginal conception, but not powerful enough to produce a Y chromosome at the same time. On what basis, though?