Saturday, June 11, 2011


The promise of a coming Savior was given early on in the drama of the temptation and sin thing that happened with Adam and Eve. Interestingly, the first promise of help was given in the context of a curse being put upon the offending serpent. It reads this way..."And the Lord God said to the serpent, Because thou hast done this, cursed art thou above all cattle, and every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: and I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between her seed and thy seed : it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel." [ Genesis 3:14-15]  

This is not simply a statement of some kind of hostility that would exist between snakes and people but does, albeit in cryptic language, speak of a strife that will be between Christ and Satan and a final triumph of the former over the latter.

How much Adam and Eve understood of it all may be up for discussion to be sure, but that there was a measure of comprehension is clear from the language in the following verses. It is pointed out by James P. Boyce in his work entitled "Abstract of Systematic Theology" that Eve, at least, associated Jehovah and His promise with the birth of Cain. Boyce says this, "Now the record taken in it's strictest grammatical interpretation teaches not only that the promised seed had become a ground of hope for the woman, but that she had learned to associate with him who was to be the antagonist of the serpent the name of Jehovah Himself." [P-260] 

 Boice then gives an elaborate and interesting word study that winds up with his showing that Eve thought Cain was, in fact, that Jehovah man-child as he gives a well researched documentation of the language that shows her statement was a statement that said, "I have obtained a man JEHOVAH." In other words, she thought her child Cain was Jehovah come in human form. He wasn't. But that child did ultimately come and the heel-bruising of the seed of woman and head-crushing of the seed of the serpent did occur. We know it as the work of the Cross on our behalf.

I think interpretive honesty and our knowledge of Christ allows us to admit that Eve was incorrect in her assumption that Cain WAS that seed promised. But nothing in the language of scripture ever states that she was correct in that assumption either. Her belief that the promised seed would be Jehovah in human form doing battle on her behalf against sin and it's sources and consequences was ultimately brought to pass however. As stated before, it is the work of the Christ of the Cross and that is the message of the gospel.

This is another simple view of Christ presented in the Old Testament much as we saw last time that He can be seen in the garments worn by the High Priest, Aaron, and his sons, the priests. 

I love to reflect on how the whole of scripture is a tale of Christ and His accomplishing the work of redemption.

Paul B.


Andrew said...

So do you see this as a type of Christ, not fully disclosed until His Advent? And I'm also guessing that you disagree with Boyce that Eve thought Cain was an Incarnation.

Paul Burleson said...


I wouldn't say it's a type of Christ but a promise of Christ not fully understood until the Advent. If I understand what I've read by Boyce he did say that Eve THOUGHT it was Jehovah present in her son which you could label as an incarnation I suppose. She was wrong obviously, but that promise was fulfilled later as we are aware.

Aussie John said...


Thanky ou for another good blog.

Twenty years ago,although it now seems like 100 years, in an old congregation, ,I taught a series along similar lines to what you have written here.

The response was either total disbelief, or thankfully, wonderment that they hadn't heard it before.

I think the "heel" and "head" statement is so very powerful, as we see the restriction placed on Satan, compared with the powerful function of the promised Savior.

"I love to reflect on how the whole of scripture is a tale of Christ and His accomplishing the work of redemption."

I too!