by Kristen C. Strocchia
“So the Lord God said to the serpent, ‘Because you have done this, cursed are you above all livestock and all wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life. 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 3:14-15
From craftiest of all the animals to cursed above all the animals. God relegates the serpent to groveling in the dust–the very material from which God made man. The same material to which His now mortal Creation would be made to return.
Not only that, but because man would now be subject to death, Satan would face an earthly enemy in addition to the enmity he’d already created between himself and God. And in the end, Satan himself would be subject to both the justice of goodness and the evil of the death that he had unleashed on earth.
This is the first Messianic prophecy recorded in scripture. Right from the Fall of man, God had a plan to redeem us–to make the things that we made wrong, right on our behalf. Redeem means to regain possession of something in exchange for payment.
You see by disobeying God, Eve and Adam removed Him from the throne of their hearts, therefore revoking their Godly citizenship. And they did so by accepting Satan’s lie that they could put themselves on the throne of their own hearts, that they could be their own god. In effect, accepting citizenship from the ruler of the power of the air, Satan [Ephesians 2:2].
Now when a third of the angels in heaven fell hook, line and sinker for Satan’s lie, they were cast out of heaven with him [Revelation 12:4]. In order for God to regain His own on this earth, payment had to be made. And sin demands the payment of death [Romans 6:23]. But wasn’t death the exact thing that God didn’t want to happen to his most beloved of the Creation?
Enter the woman. She was the first deceived. The first to revoke her Godly citizenship. But one day, God would send a seed through her–a descendant of the Creation, both fully God and fully man–who would redeem her and the husband she enticed to join her in disobedience. This seed would crush Satan’s head, but not before Satan struck [some translations bruise] His heel. And this bruised heel would be God’s payment for human redemption, but would end with God’s ultimate victory not Satan’s.
Jesus Christ died on the cross. That was the strike on the Promised Seed’s heel. His death paid the wages of our sin–every one of our sins from Eve to the great and glorious day of the Lord. But Jesus Christ also crushed Satan’s head. He conquered death, hell and the grave [1 Corinthians 15:55; Revelation 1:18]. And in the fires of hell [Revelation 20:10], Satan himself will experience eternally the death that he unleashed on the earth about 6,000 years ago in the garden.
When the great and glorious day of the Lord comes, and you stand before our Loving Creator–the Holy Judge–which citizenship will He find in your heart? Have you accepted Jesus’ payment for your sins? Or have you rejected it in favor of being your own god?