We don’t know how long Adam and Eve were in Eden before they disobeyed and ate the forbidden fruit. However long it was, by the third chapter of Genesis we find God dismissing them from that paradise. As He did, He informed them of the curses that go with sin. The serpent would have to crawl on its belly. Man would have to work much harder to get produce from the earth. And woman would have more difficulty and pain while giving birth to children.
But with that curse also came a promise. The offspring of the woman would eventually be struck in the heel by the serpent, and then the head of the serpent would be crushed by the heel of the child. This is the second oldest promise in Scripture. Each generation of women hoped… prayed that their child would be the fulfillment of that promise, defeating the enemy of sin and death.
But it would be nearly 4,000 years before that promise was fulfilled. An angel came to young Mary and continued the conversation God had started with Eve. The promise now had a name. “You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will call His name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end.” (Luke 1:31-33)
That seems like a long time for someone to make good on a promise. Mary would herself watch Jesus be struck by the enemy before He crushed the head of Satan. But here we are 2000 years later, celebrating the birth of the Savior who died and rose in victory. He went back to Heaven to be with the father, but not before promising that He would return for His people. Now we actively wait for Him to fulfill that promise. One thing we know… God has proven Himself faithful. So when He makes a promise, it is worth the wait.
For those wondering what the oldest promise is... it is actually related, and precipitated the second oldest promise. God had to promise a deliverer because Adam and Eve did not believe God's first promise... "You must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for on the day you eat from it, you will certainly die.” (Genesis 2:17)
So, God's promises are always true. I'm glad His desire is to have us in right relationship with Him. He did not cancel out the first promise, but He provided a workaround with the second promise. Thank God for all of His promises.
[Bible quotes are from the Holman Christian Standard Bible, unless otherwise noted.]
Find more of David’s work at Heart Of Ministry.
My name is David, and I want to know God more, and help other people find Him.