My husband and I read from Genesis 3 this morning for our advent devotional. Three chapters into the Bible, and the world has fallen from perfect holiness into sin and brokenness. All because man disobeyed his good, loving Creator by eating from the tree.
We were reading the part where God is confronting Adam and Eve for their willful disobedience and telling them the consequences of their actions. During this exchange between Maker and man, the serpent’s deception is brought to light and God has this to say to the conniving beast:
I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.
It was at this point that we stopped reading, and my husband quietly spoke, “It’s incredible that we’re not even three chapters into Scripture and God is already proclaiming the coming of Christ.” He paused and added, “I’m so glad that punishment isn’t the last word- grace is.”
Punishment is not the final word; rather, God’s grace.
Oh, my friends, in a time like today when there is such brokenness and evil in our world, I’m thankful for these reminders:
God is not unaware of our need, and the remedy is Christ. He saw our desperate hour and proclaimed Him right from the beginning.
God is not indifferent to evil. He hates it, and He will punish it. Need proof? Read Genesis 3. Adam and Eve chose to do evil, and He punished their wickedness.
But punishment is not the final word. Into this bleak scene in the garden shines the hope of Jesus Christ. Christ, who is Immanuel, God with us.
And it is on the cross, where the Son of God died, that God’s justice and grace shine most radiantly. For on the cross, God placed the punishment for our sin upon His only, perfect Son. And on the cross, He provided a way for sinful, evil humanity to once again be made right with their Maker. God’s justice and grace are met in Christ.
Christ, whom God gave up for us. Christ, the very essence of God Himself. Christ, our remedy and our hope.
If you are struggling this season, if you are fearful of what you witness around you, if you do not see the hope in your situation…go back to the beginning and see grace. He is there, in the midst of our brokenness, shining like a beacon in the darkest hour of night.
And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.”…And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment. -Revelation 21:6