Good News in the Midst of a Shadow – Day 5

The Lord God said to the serpent,
“Because you have done this,
   cursed are you above all livestock
   and above all beasts of the field;
on your belly you shall go,
   and dust you shall eat
   all the days of your life.
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.” (Genesis 3:14–15)

I absolutely love the creation stories that are presented to us in Genesis 1 and 2. Whatever else we believe about these stories, they remind us of who we are and for what purpose we were created! God created me to bear his image. God created you to bear his image. That is amazing! That should change your day, your year, even your life. You bear the image of the Creator of the Universe. How are you doing this in your family? At work? In your relationships? That’s where Genesis 3 comes in. We fail. We falter. We fall.

As much as I love Genesis 1 and 2, I cringe at Genesis 3. Not because of the failure of Adam and Eve, but because of my own failure – because of my own fall. I am called to the high task of bearing the image of the Creator. The image of the Redeemer. The image of God himself. Far too often, however, the image that the world sees reflected in me is . . . well, it’s not what it ought to be. It is my own pride. My own arrogance. My own greed.

I’d like to blame it on Satan. “The Devil made me do it,” I call out in my defense. But the damage is done, and I am undone; no longer am I an image bearer, but rather a sinner in desperate need of a savior. In that first shadow of sin, however, a light shines. In the curse upon humanity and the Tempter in Genesis 3, a promise is nestled.

Though there will be suffering, though the Tempter will continue to strike at the heels of the offspring of the woman, a Son will be born. A Son who will also be struck by the Tempter. And – just when things look bad and couldn’t get worse – the Son will defeat the Tempter and crush him forever. Hope in the darkest moment, for the most severe sinners. It is a shadow of a promise that will be fulfilled under the shadow of death – the shadow of the cross.

Heavenly Father, thank you for the promise of salvation even the midst of my darkest moments and my greatest failures. Thank you for restoring me to be an image bearer of your love and glory to the world. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.