To those of you who clued into Facebook, you are invited to join the group there called "Out of the Ooze Volume 1" The contributing authors are there and will entertain questions. Spencer will likely be traveling the country fostering discussion about many emerging voices in Christianity, and the work his website TheOoze has been engaged in.
In the paper I'm doing now, that I hope to pitch to publishers, I was fascinated to learn the Jewish people were not expecting a virgin birth. This is one of the reasons to believe the Gospel are true in fact. Matthew and Luke didn't need to fit a mold when writing their conception narratives. This would be a shocker to the readers of their texts, and likely a detail that came from Mary as a detail of the unusual way her first born came into the world. Though Isaiah wrote "the "virgin" will conceive" he was predicting the birth of Hezekiah the heir of King Ahaz. They did not know this was a double prediction and thought the Messiah would be born to normal parents in a normal way.