If you are like me then you are more ready for a break from work/school than you are ready to worship Jesus for coming to earth.
There are so many distractions during this time of year. I am hearing the Christmas music playing but I am not really listening yet. I am humming some of these songs but they aren't getting past my mouth to my heart.
I thought I would get an early focus on Christmas this year. We have 11 days before we celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus ... are you ready? Is your heart prepared to give Him room?
8 When the cool evening breezes were blowing, the man and his wife heard the Lord God walking about in the garden. So they hid from the Lord God among the trees. 9 Then the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”
10 He replied, “I heard you walking in the garden, so I hid. I was afraid because I was naked.”
11 “Who told you that you were naked?” the Lord God asked. “Have you eaten from the tree whose fruit I commanded you not to eat?”
12 The man replied, “It was the woman you gave me who gave me the fruit, and I ate it.”
13 Then the Lord God asked the woman, “What have you done?”
“The serpent deceived me,” she replied. “That’s why I ate it.”
14 Then the Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, you are cursed more than all animals, domestic and wild. You will crawl on your belly, groveling in the dust as long as you live. 15 And I will cause hostility between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring. He will strike your head, and you will strike his heel.”
16 Then he said to the woman, “I will sharpen the pain of your pregnancy, and in pain you will give birth. And you will desire to control your husband, but he will rule over you.”
17 And to the man he said, “Since you listened to your wife and ate from the tree whose fruit I commanded you not to eat, the ground is cursed because of you. All your life you will struggle to scratch a living from it. 18 It will grow thorns and thistles for you, though you will eat of its grains. 19 By the sweat of your brow will you have food to eat until you return to the ground from which you were made. For you were made from dust, and to dust you will return.”
Christmas began in a garden. Christmas began after the fall to be more accurate.
Buried in this pronouncement of God is the promise of hope. Behind this horrible pronouncement stands the shadow of a baby in a manger.
Our English translations do not do justice to the words found here. Let me show you what I mean:
And I will cause hostility between you and the woman, and between your offspring (plural) and her offspring (singular). He will strike your head, and you will strike his heel.”
This is a prophecy that the coming Messiah would save people from darkness and sin. The offspring (plural) of the serpent will do battle with the offspring (singular) of woman. In other words, one baby would come from the womb of a woman and rescue people from the effects of the Fall. One "seed" or offspring would be able to change the impact of all others.
Eve now needed to be rescued by one of her own children. Could that be Cain? She might have easily thought so.
"Cain's mother mistook Cain for Christ. As soon as Eve saw her first-born son she no longer remembered the anguish. What a joyful woman Eve was that day! Put yourself back into her place. Eve had brought banishment from Eden on her husband and on herself by listening to the father of lies. But the Lord God had come down to Eve in her terrible distress and beginning His book of promises with His best promise, had promised to her that the seed of the woman should bruise the serpent's head and should thus redeem and undo all the evil that she had brought on herself and on her husband.
As we know now, Cain was not to be the Christ. No. The angel Gabriel was not sent to Adam and Eve. The angel of the Annunciation who stands in the presence of God passed by Eve and Sarah and Rachel and Hannah and Elizabeth and all the other mothers in Israel and came to a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph."
Alexander Whyte, pastor in Scotland, 1890
Christmas is the promise of hope for you today.
Christmas answers Eve's greatest need and our need as well. Christmas offers the rescue we all need from the effects of sin inherited from our family.
This passage says a lot about God and the gospel. First I see that God is holy and must deal with sin. He loves Adam and Eve and therefore cannot overlook their choices. So, we see a judgment for sin. On the other hand. I see a God that is merciful and willing to take that sin on Himself. He loves Adam and Eve too much to leave them in their sin.
That is what Christmas is all about. It is not just one of several competing Winter holidays!
Praise you God for your indescribable Gift!
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