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#251 – The First Gospel (Genesis 3:15)

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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.” This is known as the protoevangelium, which means the first gospel. So we’re three chapters into the Book of Genesis. Everything was perfect in Genesis 1 and 2. Everything good. God and man existing together in perfect harmony. Man and woman existing together in perfect harmony. Man, woman and creation existing together in perfect harmony.

But then in the beginning of Genesis 3, sin enters the world, and we see the fall of man. We see the effects of sin as man and woman and their relationship with God are now marked by guilt, and shame, and fear, and there’s separation that occurs. Yet in the middle of it all, it the middle of what is really the worst chapter in a sense in the entire Bible, the entrance of sin into the world, and just think about all the effects of sin since that day all over the world, natural disasters, moral evil, horrible injustices.

Sin ruined the intimacy between God and man, but God promised He would send One to restore that intimacy.

The effects of sin in the world all coming from that one day. Yet in the middle of it, in the middle of this chapter, God gives a promise. He says to the serpent, “There is going to be enmity between you and the woman and so basically you and her offspring, so all who would come after her, all who would come after Adam and Eve, would experience battle with sin.” Every one of us knows this in our lives. Yet there’s a promise here, the first gospel promise that there’s one coming from Eve, from her offspring, who will bruise, some translations say, “Crush the serpent’s head, who will defeat sin, who will defeat the devil.” This is obviously a picture, the promise of the coming Christ, the savior who would defeat sin.

This is a promise of Jesus in the very beginning of the Bible that God will not leave us alone in this battle with sin, that God will come, that God, we look back now has come. Jesus has come. He has lived a sinless life. He never once gave in to temptation and then though he had no sin for which to pay, there was no curse he deserved. He did not deserve to die. He chose to die. He became Galatians 3 says, “A curse for us.” He took the penalty of our sin upon himself on the cross so that, get this, you and I can be forgiven of all of our sin against God. We can be free from its power over us and free from its ultimate penalty in our lives.

So we pray, Lord Jesus, all glory be to your name. You are the fulfillment of this promise, Genesis 3:15. We praise you for crushing the serpent’s head. We praise you for going to the cross, for taking the curse we deserve upon yourself, for dying in our place. Then we praise you for rising from the dead in victory over sin and death and making eternal life possible for us, making reunion with restoration to redemption, reconciliation with God possible. What was separated now can come together. You and I, oh God, that you have given what was separated can now come together. We, oh God, sinners are right now speaking to you in your presence.

This is only possible because of what Christ did on the cross for us, so we thank you. Thank you. Thank you, Lord Jesus and we pray. Help us today. Help us to live the way you’ve called, created us, saved us, to live. Help us to live with power over sin. Help us to turn from temptation today. It does not have rule and reign over us. God help us we pray to turn from sin today by the power of your grace. Help us to turn from sin more, and more, and more, and more.
God we long for the day when sin, our struggles with sin, will be no more. We long for that day. Please bring it about soon we pray and help us. Help us to be faithful, increasingly faithful. Make us more, and more, and more, holy we pray. By the power of Christ and his grace in us, make us holy we pray. Help us to turn from sin and walk with you by the power of the king who crushed the serpent for us in Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and president of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, and Counter Culture.
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