Summary: Genesis 3:15. The first glimpse of the gospel is explained from the account of the fall of man.
IN THE BEGINNING
GENESIS PART 1 – ANTEDILUVIAN HISTORY
THE DOCTRINE OF REDEMPTION
- Any good author knows the end of the story before he begins writing the beginning of it. It makes it easier to fill in the details of the storyline if you know where everything is supposed to end up. What is included in the story is determined by whether or not it makes progress towards the ultimate ending. The same is true for a public speaker writing a speech or a preacher writing a sermon. If you don’t know where you are going you will have a difficult time getting there. The main point of a speech or message dictates what information is included. And we could really apply this to just about every area of life. When you want to build something, you lay out the plans first. The blueprints point the way to the final product. You know what you are building before you pick up the hammer. It is almost always beneficial to plan the ending of something before you start it.
- Now, while God in many ways is not to be compared to an earthly storyteller, or speaker, or architect; he is similar in this way: the end was planned from the beginning. God knew what the ultimate goal for this universe was before he created it. He tells us many times in his word what this goal was. And perhaps one of the clearest places is in Ephesians 1:3-10: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.
- When God set out to create the universe this was the plan: that he would call a people known and loved by him from eternity to himself, that he would adopt them as sons and daughters as they were predestined to be; that to the praise of his glorious grace he would redeem them from their sinful depravity, and that through all of this the entire creation (both spiritual and physical), the heavens and the earth would see the glory of Jesus Christ. Redemption was the plan before sin ever stuck its ugly head into the picture. And the glory of God seen in the redemption of man is the great purpose of this universe.
- What do we mean by the word redemption? It is not a complicated concept. To redeem means to buy or purchase something; especially to pay a ransom for the deliverance of someone or something. In the biblical era, to redeem a slave meant that someone purchased a slave’s freedom for a specific price. So when the word redemption is applied in a spiritual sense, in a Christian context, to sinful mankind it refers to Jesus Christ giving his life as a ransom for our freedom. Jesus Christ bought us out of sin and purchased eternal life for believers on the cross.
- And as we have mentioned, that was the plan from the very beginning. The cross was not a back up plan. For us football fans, it was not an audible. God had predetermined that this was how he was going to reveal his glory to his creation. So it’s no surprise then that when Adam and Eve fall into sin as a result of giving in to the temptation of the serpent, God immediately announces the solution to problem.
- This is not a case of God being a quick thinker or a fast problem solver. This is a display of his eternality, his omniscience, his sovereignty, and the eternal purpose of his will. Of course I am speaking of Genesis 3:15. Here is what God says to the serpent in the midst of his proclamation of judgment to him:
[READ GENESIS 3:15]
- This verse has been called the Protoevangelium. That is simply a compound of two Greek words, proto meaning “first” and euangelion meaning “gospel” or “good news”. So this is the first glimpse of the gospel in Scripture. And it is fitting that the first hint of redemption comes before the account of the fall into sin is even complete.