So the Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, ‘Cursed are you above all the livestock and all the wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life. And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head and you will strike his heel.’” – Genesis 3:14-15
These verses in Genesis, at first glance, may seem out of place in a devotional meant to lead up to Christmas But Advent is a season of waiting to celebrate the arrival of the Christ child. This verse provides the first hint of God’s plan of salvation following Adam and Eve’s fall in the garden of Eden. It gives the promise of a Messiah, and ushers in a long season of waiting for a Savior to save God’s people from their sin.
We often think of a different kind of promise at Christmas– promises of holiday celebrations involving family, food, and gifts. We want to live up to high expectations, both our own and those of others. We may stress over the details of decorating a perfect tree, shopping for the perfect gifts, and preparing the perfect meal.
These verses give us a perfect hope in the promise of Christ’s ultimate triumph over sin and death. As we observe this season of Advent leading up to the celebration of our Savior’s birth, let us also keep in mind that the church is in another season of Advent. We are looking forward to the second coming of Jesus the Messiah.
Heavenly Father, thank you for the love you have for us. You loved us in spite of our sin, and provided a way for our salvation through your son Jesus. Thank you for the gift of your son that we celebrate at Christmas. Help me to remember to celebrate the true reason for the season this year, and to live in the joy and hope of your promise.
~ Amy Schmersal