Sunday, November 17, 2013

Giving Thanks #17 Genesis 3:15

Genesis 3:15 may sound like an odd thing to be thankful for. In some ways it's an ugly verse about the trappings of sin. But. It's also a promise. It's the first gospel promise. The first indication that a Savior would indeed come, that God would provide a way to restore fallen man. This verse shows ultimate victory: victory over Satan, victory over sin. Look closer at the verse, and you see that God is showing love and mercy to sinners.

It's important today that we realize our fallenness; it's essential that we recognize our need for a Savior. And that includes recognizing that our need is met completely and fully in Jesus Christ. (John 1:29; Matthew 1:21; John 14:6) Sin separates man from God. Sin prevents us from being in right relationship with God. The only way we can be right with God is through his Son, through our union with his Son. The gospel is precious; the Bible is full of precious promises; the Bible shows God's grace from cover to cover--Genesis to Revelation.
This is the first gospel sermon that was ever delivered upon the surface of this earth. It was memorable discourse indeed, with Jehovah himself for the preacher, and the whole human race and the prince of darkness for the audience. It must be worthy of our heartiest attention. ~ Charles Spurgeon, Christ The Conqueror of Satan
This promise was literally fulfilled in the person of our Lord Jesus Christ. Satan bruised his heel, when he tempted him for forty days together in the wilderness: he bruised his heel, when he raised up strong persecution against him during the time of his public ministry: he in an especial manner bruised his heel, when our Lord complained, that his soul was exceeding sorrowful, even unto death, and he sweat great drops of blood falling upon the ground, in the garden; He bruised his heel, when he put it into the heart of Judas to betray him: and he bruised him yet most of all, when his emissaries nailed him to an accursed tree, and our Lord cried out, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” Yet, in all this, the blessed Jesus, the seed of the woman, bruised Satan's accursed head; for, in that he was tempted, he was able to succor those that are tempted. By his stripes we are healed. The chastisement of our peace was upon him. By dying, he destroyed him that had the power of death, that is, the devil. He thereby spoiled principalities and powers, and made a show of them openly, triumphing over them upon the cross. ~ George Whitfield, The Seed of the Woman, and the Seed of the Serpent
This third chapter of the book of Genesis is absolutely essential to a true understanding of life, the whole of life as it is at this moment for each individual. ~ Martyn Lloyd-Jones
And 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 3:15, NASB)

Almost all translations get this verse right. In fact, I was surprised to discover that translators COULD get this one wrong. But one gets it wrong--dreadfully wrong. And it's a deal breaker for me. Because the CEB (Common English Bible) got this one wrong, I don't imagine that I'll ever read that translation again.

I will put contempt between you and the woman, between your offspring and hers. They will strike your head, but you will strike at their heels. (CEB)

Translations that get right: NIV; ESVThe Message; NKJV; NLT; NRSVGod's Word Translation (GW); Amplified Bible; American Standard Version; Contemporary English Version; ESV; GNT; HCSB; KJV; Living Bible; NCV; NET; RSV; WEB; The Voice.

Every major translation gets this one right. Even the translations that have made other changes to make the Bible more gender-friendly in other places. Even the translations that are free and paraphrased. So it's a big deal that a translation could get this verse--this important verse--wrong. It makes me question the translation.

For further reading:
Christ the Conqueror of Satan by Charles Spurgeon
The Serpent's Sentence by Charles Spurgeon
The Seed of the Woman, and the Seed of the Serpent by George Whitfield

© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible


Joyful Reader said...

Great post but I have to confess that I almost skipped it due to that picture of the snake! Glad I pushed through.

Nikki said...

Thank you for letting me know the "why" behind your decision not to read the CEB anymore. I happened upon your website because another site linked your review of Erwin Lutzer's book so I happened to just browse around and saw the note on CEB.

Nikki said...

Thank you for directing me to this post as to why you no longer read the CEB. Another site linked your book review of Erwin Lutzer's Eternal Rewards. While browsing around your site,I saw your notation on the CEB and was curious.