“For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.” 1 John 3:8b
The Christmas story begins in an unlikely place. If asked, many would say in the Gospels, with an angel’s visit, with a virgin and her betrothed. But the need for Hope was found in a garden when the first woman encountered a serpent, partaking then of forbidden fruit and when the first man decided to doubt God’s Word and follow the path of temptation yielding to sin.
It began with banishment and thorns and pain. It was followed by death and the reign of the serpent was unbroken for centuries. By placing the story of Christ’s birth in the larger storyline of the Bible it opens up its significance to us.
Genesis 3:15 is the first Messianic prophecy of Scripture.
“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.” Amplified Version
God implemented the ritual of sacrifice for sins. He sent Moses to lead His children to the Promised Land. He gave Kings to lead them, but all led unperfectly, and God’s chosen people often strayed, complained, worshipped idols, married idolaters, fell into captivity of heathen nations, repented of their sin until God would deliver them.
Then, in the fulness of time, God sent his Son, born of a Virgin into the world. Born of flesh to condemn sin in the flesh. When Christ died, that serpent bruised his heel, but on the third day Christ rose triumphant and in the life of every Christian he daily ‘bruises Satans head’. Our victory comes from Christ!
Come, Desire of nations, come,
fix in us thy humble home;
rise, the woman’s conquering Seed,
bruise in us the serpent’s head.
Adam’s likeness, Lord, efface;
stamp thine image in its place.
Second Adam from above,
Reinstate us in thy love.
Hark! the herald angels sing,
"Glory to the new born King!"