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009 A Wonderful Saviour

‘And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; he shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel’

(Genesis 3:15)

Key Verse:

‘But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hidden His face from you, that he will not hear’

(Isaiah 59:2)

(Genesis 3)

In our last lesson, we saw how Adam and Eve strayed from the way of God by eating fruit from the tree that God had forbidden. Thus, the man, whom God created in His own image, chose to follow Satan, the enemy of God. Before Adam and Eve sinned,

they rejoiced

whenever God came to the garden to talk with them, but now, when they heard the voice of God,

they were afraid

and ashamed and tried to hide from God among the trees of the garden! However, God followed after Adam and Eve, spoke with them, and told them what their sin would bring into the world: trouble and suffering, thorns and thistles, sickness and death. As a result, from that day until today,

the shadow of death hangs over us, Adam’s descendants.

We who are Adam’s children are conceived in sin and born with an evil nature.

Whether we like it or not, we all share the life of our forefather, Adam. It is often said “Like father, like son” It is because of Adam’s sin that we are all born sinners. Truly,

“an epidemic is not confined to the one from whom it originates!”

And just as Adam’s sin separated him from God, so has our sin separated us from God. That is what the Scriptures say, “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, and so

death passed upon all men,

for all have sinned” (Rom. 5:12)

“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Rom. 3:23) 

“But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hidden His face from you, that he will not hear.” (Isa. 59:2)

This message is not pleasant to hear, but that is the way it is. As we say,

“Truth is like a hot pepper. It is not easy to swallow.”

Thus, we see how

Adam’s one sin separated the whole human race from God.

On the day that Adam disobeyed God, Adam, and the whole human race yet to be born, left the kingdom of light and entered the kingdom of darkness.

They no longer had any share in the Kingdom of God.

Because of their sin, they now stood with Satan, who had taken them as his captives and slaves. Now, they couldn’t hope for anything in this life, except slavery to sin and fear of death–and in the hereafter, endless punishment in the eternal fire!

If the Scriptures ended here, we could only close the book and weep bitterly like someone lost in the desert, with no hope of being found. If God had not opened a way of salvation to save the children of Adam,

we would be doomed forever!

But blessed be the LORD our God, the Scriptures do not end with the story of Adam’s sin. God, who is great in mercy, has opened for the children of Adam

a door of salvation!

But, the Word of God says, “Where sin abounded, [God’s] grace did much more abound.” (Rom. 5:20) “Fear not; for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people!” (Luke 2:10) “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men!” (Tit. 2:11)

As we have already learned, God is holy and, therefore must judge sinners.

God is righteous and cannot overlook sin.

He must punish every sin. The penalty for sin is death and eternal separation from God. God never changes and the penalty of sin never changes. However, today, we will begin to read in the Scriptures how God, the Holy One, designed a plan to deliver sinners from the penalty of sin. Thus, we will learn that God is not only the Holy One, but He is also the Merciful One! God, our Judge, wants to become our Saviour!

We will see how, on the day that Adam and Eve sinned, God began to make known

His wonderful plan to save sinners.

Let us continue now in the book of Genesis, so that we might learn about this Good News. We read in chapter 3, verse 15: God said to Satan, who was in the serpent, “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; he shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.” This difficult verse contains many deep and important truths which God’s prophets would later explain in detail. The contents of this verse, can be simply explained like this: God was beginning to make known His plan to bring into the world a Saviour {or Deliverer} who would redeem the children of Adam from the rule of Satan. This is

the first verse

that mentions the coming of the holy Redeemer. In this verse, let us consider four truths concerning the Redeemer whom God promised to send.

1) God was announcing how this Redeemer would be

the seed of a woman,

that is, a virgin. All of us have a male and a female parent. However, the Redeemer who was to come,

would be born only of a woman,

by the power of God. He would not have an earthly father. The Saviour of the world could not come from Adam, because all of Adam’s descendants are stained by sin. The Saviour of sinners had to be without sin. He had to come forth from God, from heaven. Thus, the first thing we may learn from this verse is this: God promised a holy Redeemer who would be the son of a woman, but

not the son of a man.

2) There is something else that God announced on the day that Adam and Eve sinned. Concerning the promised Redeemer, God said to Satan: “Thou shalt bruise his heel.” Thus, God began to announce how Satan would hurt the Saviour whom God would send from heaven. In coming lessons, we will see that the prophets foretold how Satan would provoke men to persecute, torture and kill the Redeemer.

A suffering Redeemer would be part of God’s plan.

In order to bring us back to God, the Saviour of the world would have to die as a sacrifice for sin; the Righteous One dying for us, the unrighteous. He would willingly lay down His life to pay sin’s penalty:

death.

3) The third truth concerning the Redeemer was that God told Satan, who was in the serpent, that “he (the Redeemer) would crush his (Satan’s) head.” That was bad news for Satan, but good news for whoever wants to be delivered from the power of Satan, sin and hell! Thus, God began to announce that

the Redeemer would, in the end, defeat the devil

and set free the children of Adam who had become slaves of sin.

4) Finally, God began to announce that there would be two groups of people in the world:

The people of Satan and the people of God.

The people of Satan are those who refuse to believe the Word of God. The people of God are those who believe God’s Word and put their trust in the promised Redeemer. (John 1:9-13)

Thus, on the day that Adam and Eve sinned, God began to announce His wondrous plan to redeem sinners. In coming lessons, little by little, we will see how all of God’s prophets announced

the coming of a holy Saviour

who would free sinners from the hand of the devil. If what we have just taught is not yet clear in your mind, do not worry, because as we progress in our chronological study, things will become clearer. Remember the proverb that says: “The thing comes to the person who seriously seeks for it”. Are you seeking with all your heart at the Word of God?

Good!

God says: “If thou seekest her [the truth] as silver, and searchest for her as for hidden treasures . . . then shalt thou . . . find the knowledge of God!” (Prov. 2:4,5)

Now then, let us finish reading the third chapter of the first book of Genesis. The Scriptures say: “For Adam and for his wife did the Lord God make coats of skins,

and clothed them.

And the Lord God said, behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil; and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever; Therefore

the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden,

to till the ground from where he was taken. So he drove out the man; and he placed in the east of the garden of Eden cherubim, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life” (Genesis 3:21-24). That is how the third chapter ends. There are some things here which need to be explained, before we conclude this lesson.

The Scriptures say: “For Adam and for his wife did the Lord God make coats of skins, and clothed them.” Do you remember what Adam and Eve did after they ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil? They wove together fig leaves and wrapped them around their waists in an attempt

to hide their shame before God.

Did God accept the clothes they had made for themselves, the clothes they made with leaves? No, He did not! Why did God not accept the clothes they had made for themselves? Because God wanted to teach Adam and Eve that

He is perfect and cannot accept the imperfect works of man.

Concerning this, the Scriptures say: “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses as filthy rags.” (Isa. 64:6) There is nothing man can do to cover his sins before God.

However, God did something for man. God killed some animals, skinned them, and made clothes of skin for Adam and Eve. Yes,

God made the first animal sacrifice.

What a shocking sight for Adam and Eve as they watched the life-giving blood flow out of the animals that God had killed! Through the shed blood of animals, God wanted to teach Adam and Eve that “the wages of sin is death, (Rom. 6:23) and that “without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin.” (Heb. 9:22) We cannot explain this in detail today, except to say that God’s basic law of forgiveness states: “Without shedding of blood there is no remission of sins.” The penalty of sin must be paid.

The penalty of sin is death.

God can only forgive sins that have been paid for. A pure and innocent victim must die in the place of the guilty sinner. This is the only way that God can forgive people of their sins and still remain righteous. We will learn more about this later. However, let us remember that

God shed the blood of animals to cover the shame of Adam and Eve.

After this, God expelled Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden. He placed an angel holding a flaming, flashing sword

to guard the way to the tree of life.

Adam and Eve had chosen the way of death when they ate the fruit that God had forbidden. As a result, they could no longer enjoy the blessings of the wonderful Garden of Fellowship with God. We have already seen how God expelled Lucifer, that is, Satan, from His presence because of his sin. Now we see that God expelled Adam and Eve because of their sin.

God is the Holy One, and He must punish all that is unholy.

So dear students, let us keep two thoughts in mind: First,

God is the Righteous One.

God cannot tolerate sin. That is why He judged Adam and Eve and expelled them from the garden. Second,

God is the Merciful One.

Adam and Eve did not deserve God’s mercy. They only deserved God’s judgement. However, God does not want people to perish. That is why He promised a Saviour who could save sinners from the darkness of the kingdom of Satan, and transfer them into the light and glory of the Kingdom of God.

Do not be deceived:

God’s mercy can never work against God’s righteousness.

These two characteristics of God must operate together. In future lessons, we will see more clearly how God can show mercy to sinners,

and still remain righteous.

Dear friends, you have been studying about the wonderful promise God made on the day that Adam and Eve strayed from God’s way. We hope that you will continue studying these lessons until you have come to understand fully God’s wonderful promise about the Redeemer

He has sent to save you from your sins.

Thank you for studying. We invite you to join us for the next lesson to learn some important lessons from Adam and Eve’s first two sons: Cain and Abel.

God bless you as you carefully consider what the Scripture says “Where sin abounded, [God’s] grace did much more abound!” (Rom. 5:20)

We would invite you to answer the questions attached and send them together with any questions that you might have