2023 Advent Devotional - Genesis 3:15 (Day 1)

Genesis 3:15 “…I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.”

The story of Jesus’ birth in the book of Luke is what most people are familiar with.  The promised gift is revealed and, as the hymn says, “earth receives her King!”  But the promise is first given in the first pages of God’s story back in Genesis 3.  

Every story has a conflict, and well, for mankind it doesn’t take long for the conflict to display itself.  Adam and Eve take the fall.  The deceiver and father of all lies has his way with God’s very good creation.  He convinces them that they can make their own wise choices and freely take the one thing God warned them not too.  And well, we have reaped the devastation ever since.  The sin has had its consequences and they are vast.  

But Genesis 3:15 offers us a glimmer of hope.  When God curses the serpent, he tells him that one day, after fighting a battle with the descendants of Eve, one descendant will “bruise his head.”  

As the story progresses, we will see God giving us signs of this promise being fulfilled.  Little shepherd David gets his victory over the seed of the snake! (Read the end of that story to see the bruising of the head!)  There’s a short story in Judges 4:21 when Jael has her chance to bruise the head of the snake.  And there are times when God’s people seem to be able to have victory over the seed of the snake.

But there are also so many times where it seems that the evil one is having his way.  By the time we get to the end of the Old Testament, it is clear that the defeat is real. (Ever been there?)  The prophets, as we’ll see this season, long for the victory to finally prevail!  And then the gift arrives.  

At first, it isn’t obvious.  It takes Jesus’ 12 closest followers a long time to see it.  But eventually, Jesus will face the snake (death) head on.  And when the tomb is empty, and Jesus appears to his disciples, their eyes are opened to the gift Jesus is giving them.  
 “O death, where is your victory?
  O death, where is your sting?”
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

May you live in the power and strength and the gift of his victory over all sin in your life!

Heavenly Father, praise be to You for the victory we have in Jesus!  Thank you for the gift that we never have to strive or earn or win a victory on our own.  May we live boldly and fiercely knowing that the evil one has been defeated forever.  In the name of the victorious Savior Jesus Christ, Amen.  - By Amanda Dablemont
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