The starting point for all of the prophecies of the coming Messiah is Genesis 3:15, where we see for the first time, the promise that one of the Descendants of the woman will one day come and end the work of the serpent. People have rightly called this verse the ‘Proto-euangelium’ or the ‘first-gospel’ because Genesis 3:15 is the first place in the Bible where there is a promise that the Redeeming Messiah will come. We know two things from this verse.
The ‘Seed’ of the woman will do work that will crush the serpent’s work, and the result of this work is that the serpent shall receive a fatal blow, while the ‘Seed’ of the woman receives a non-fatal blow to His heel. Of course this fatal blow to the serpent is referring to the entire life of Jesus Christ, the Son of God: His birth, His life, His ministry, His death, His resurrection, and His ascension provide for us everything we need for redemption while the non-fatal blow the serpent will deal to the Messiah is His temporary death on the cross.
The consequences flowing out of Genesis 3:15 are massive.
Even in the midst of such blatant defiance, death, and darkness in the fall of man – God is there to give grace to His people.
It is astonishing, almost unbelievable that God will not allow man to perish but is determined to bring rescue. Genesis 3:15 introduces us to the grand plan of salvation. Much is still dark, true. We do not see with clarity as we do now.
This gracious promise becomes an organizing theme for the rest of Scripture and the rest of human history, such that every character and every event find their place in relation to the great battle now unfolding between the conquering ‘Seed’ of the woman and the lying serpent, Satan.
Though much is still in the dark, we learn that God will take the initiative to save His people. To provide redemption. To do for mankind what mankind cannot do for Himself. He will introduce enmity and the long foretold coming ‘Seed’ of the woman shall deal the decisive fatal blow. Even way back in Genesis 3:15, in the midst of such sin, we see the light of the gospel breaking forth.