Read: Genesis 3:14-15
They had walked in perfect communion with God, but in one fleeting moment, giving in to temptation, Adam and Eve lost it all. Now, they stood at God’s feet, fearful and covered in shame.
So often, I have imagined this scene with them and God, living out a punishment beyond anything we can comprehend. In my mind, the serpent has never been in this picture, and yet, he was there. Not only was he present, he was the first to receive punishment from God. The serpent is the only one directly cursed in the passage, and God does not mince words. The serpent is cursed above all other wild animals, and pushed down to the ground to eat the bitter dirt that surrounds him (Genesis 3:14).
Verse 15 of chapter 3 is one of the most important prophecies in the whole Bible, because it’s the first telling of the Messiah to come. Also known as the protoevangelium (in Greek it means the first Gospel), an Old Testament scholar named Derek Kidner said it was “the first glimmer of the gospel.” Even as the world is thrown into darkness and Adam and Eve are losing their intimacy with God, He is promising that Jesus will come, and that He will trample Satan (who is the serpent) in final victory.
It’s hard to comprehend that even in God’s sorrow and just action, He is already moving humanity towards the hope of the Gospel. So often, I find myself unable to accept God’s love. Hope seems so far off. And yet, we have an eternal hope.
Through the death and resurrection of Jesus, the serpent’s head has been crushed for all time. Satan’s dominion on this earth is only a little while yet before Christ comes in glory and newness. Our broken down humanity is being made continually new in God. When the serpent struck Christ’s heel, He stepped on Satan’s head in the final victory of His resurrection.
I know that I am called to live the hope of that truth out even today. In the wrestle of living, the ultimate victory is already won. What will it take for us to remember that reality? Make it a prayer: God, show us even now.