“And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel."
The section of Scripture known as the “Protoevangelium” continues with this crucial scripture. Genesis 3:15 essentially describes a macro-level view of history from this point forward. It introduces the need for the Messiah—Savior—to ultimately defeat the influence of Satan. Thus, this scripture is the first messianic prophecy in the Bible.
Let’s break this verse down to understand more about what we are to learn:
- “And I will put enmity between you and the woman.” This statement can be understood on multiple levels. First, on the physical level, this verse declares that there would be enmity (hatred, hostility) between humans (especially females) and snakes. This is true, as human beings generally have a fear and dislike for snakes, some of which are extremely dangerous. Second, this explains the hatred that exists between Satan and the human race (the progeny of the woman). Satan is described as a “murderer” (John 8:44), an “enemy” (Matthew 13:39) and an “adversary” (1 Peter 5:8) of humanity. That enmity Satan has for humanity is based on his desire to subvert God’s plan of “bringing many sons to glory” (Hebrews 2:10).
- “And between your seed and her Seed.” The prophecy here broadens to look further into the future. “Her Seed” is a reference to Jesus Christ, who was the most important descendent of Eve (through Abraham) as revealed in Galatians 3:16 (see also Galatians 4:4). The work of Jesus Christ, as the prophesied Messiah, includes many aspects that put Him in direct conflict with Satan. Satan’s seed is anyone who has his mind and attitudes. In John 8:44, for example, Satan is said to be the father of the Pharisees, who want to destroy Christ.
Here are a few ways that Jesus Christ and Satan are in direct conflict:
- Christ is the Light, revealing God’s truth (John 1:9); while Satan is darkness, blinding humanity (Acts 26:18; 2 Corinthians 4:4).
- Christ came to save men’s lives (Luke 9:56; 1 Timothy 1:15), while Satan seeks to murder human beings—not just physically, but to spiritually destroy them by leading them down the path to eternal death (John 8:44).
- Christ leads human beings to righteousness (Romans 3:22; 5:17; Philippians 1:11), while Satan seeks to lead humanity toward wickedness (Ephesians 6:12).
These and many other reasons are why Satan and Christ are prophesied to be at “enmity.” This is especially clear in the direct confrontation between Christ and Satan in Matthew 4:1-11. This account shows how Satan tried to destroy the plan of God by tempting Jesus Christ to sin and thus disqualify Himself from being the Savior. He believed that if Jesus sinned, the plan to bring human beings into God’s family (Hebrews 2:10) would failGod’s plan to bring human beings into His family (Hebrews 2:10) requires that human beings be forgiven through Christ’s perfect sacrifice and then walk in “newness of life” (Romans 6:4) until a future time when they will be resurrected as immortal spirit beings (1 Corinthians 15:17-18). Satan wanted to thwart this—but he failed, and the plan of God continued forward.
Tomorrow we will cover the last part of this verse, which reveals the ultimate outcome of the “enmity” between Satan and Jesus Christ.
To learn more about the role of Jesus Christ in the plan of God, read the articles in our section on “Jesus Christ.”
Tomorrow on the Daily Bible Verse Blog: “Satan and Jesus Christ in Genesis, Part 2.”