Links Daily Devotional

Bruised for Us

The LORD God said to the serpent, “…I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; he shall bruise you on the head, and you shall bruise him on the heel.”  (Genesis 3:14-15, NAS 1995)

Have you ever been hit with a golf ball? If you have, you’ll know that they are pretty solid objects that, with any speed behind them, are more than a match for the flesh that protects us from most outside elements.

I’ve been hit twice, both times by friends I thought could be trusted with a club and ball. Both times I was less than forty yards away, and both times I had my back turned. Both times my friends yelled a warning. The first time I ducked forward and the ball glanced up my spine and hit me in the back of the head, fortunately directly on the adjustment strap of my golf cap. No blood (mine or his) was shed.

The second time was just a few days ago, and when my friend yelled “Heads up!” I started to duck and simultaneously felt the ball strike my left heel, just an inch to the right of dead center. It ricocheted from there back toward the middle of the fairway, traveling at least twenty yards. Three thoughts came immediately to mind:

1. Ouch!
2. I’m glad I wore traditional golf shoes today and not the soft-sided ones I thought about wearing.
3. “He will bruise you on the head, and you will bruise him on the heel.”

That may seem like an odd thing to think of in that moment, but since I learned more than 40 years ago that Genesis 3:15 is the first prophecy in the Bible about Jesus the Messiah, it has never been far from my mind. The words were spoken by God to Satan (the serpent), and they were fulfilled just over 2000 years ago. In fact, as we celebrate Easter and the resurrection of Jesus Christ, I thrill at these words once more.

Satan did bruise the heel of Jesus. He was crucified, and as far as the world was concerned—and perhaps as far as Satan was concerned—the poison had been administered, death was the result, and the ending was written. But if the serpent had listened more carefully he would have understood that it was only a wound for Jesus, but it was the end for him.

I like to think that when Jesus was raised from the dead—and his resurrection is what Easter is all about—those words of God from the time of Adam and Eve rang through Satan’s mind, “He will bruise your head, and you will bruise his heel.” The ending was written; it just wasn’t the one he wanted.

So there I was, “walking it off” on the golf course, accepting my friend’s apology and telling the group I was fine, and thinking about Genesis and Jesus. When I finally removed my shoe an hour later, I could see a pretty nasty bruise on my heel (it’s still there as I write), and I was thankful once again for what Jesus did for all of us.

Lewis Greer

March 28, 2013

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