“And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel” (Genesis 3:15, NIV). What did the Lord say to the serpent here, and what hope is implied in these verses?
God begins His judgment with the serpent because he is the one who initiated the whole drama. The serpent, too, is the only being who is cursed in this narrative.
We reach here a kind of “reversal” of Creation. While Creation led to life, the appreciation of good, and blessings, judgment leads to death, evil, and curses — but also, to the hope and promise of salvation. Attached to the somber picture of the crushed serpent eating the dust (Genesis 3:14) shines the hope of the salvation of humankind, which appears in the form of a prophecy. Even before the condemnations of Adam and Eve, which will follow, the Lord gives them the hope of redemption (Genesis 3:15). Yes, they have sinned; yes, they will suffer because of their sin; and, yes, they will die, too, because of the sins. But despite all that, there is the ultimate hope, the hope of salvation.
Compare Genesis 3:15 with Romans 16:20, Hebrews 2:14, and Revelation 12:17. How is the plan of salvation, as well as the great controversy, revealed in these texts?
Notice the parallels between Genesis 3:15 and Revelation 12:17: the dragon (serpent), enraged (enmity); the seed (offspring); and the woman in Eden and the woman in Revelation 12:17. The battle (the great controversy) that moved to Eden, with the Fall, will continue to the end of time. However, the promise of Satan’s defeat was already given in Eden, in that his head will be crushed, a theme more explicitly revealed in Revelation, which depicts his final demise (Revelation 20:10). That is, right from the start, humanity was given hope that there will be a way out of the terrible mess that came from the knowledge of evil, a hope that we all can share in right now.
|Why is it so comforting to see that, in Eden itself, where sin and evil on earth began, the Lord started to reveal the plan of salvation?|