Covenant of Hope
At the point of utter despair and hopelessness, God establishes as new covenant – the Adamic Covenant. This covenant would again be made with Adam as the representative head of all mankind. But unlike the Edenic Covenant, which was conditional and bilateral, the Adamic Covenant is unilateral, made solely by God, and He would be the One to fulfill it. The Adamic Covenant opens with a pronouncement on the serpent. There are two aspects to this pronouncement. The first aspect is related to the animal-serpent. We know that the rebellious, fallen angel Lucifer was the ultimate source of the temptation of Eve, but the vessel used to tempt her was cursed first. We see that the serpent must have walked uprightly before the Fall, because the it would now be forced to crawl on its belly. It would also be hated and feared by mankind from that point forward. The second aspect of the pronouncement on the serpent is related to Lucifer, himself. And herein lays the hope of the Adamic Covenant. First, we see hatred between Lucifer and Eve that would continue throughout the history of mankind. It only takes a moment to look at the way that women have been treated over the centuries to see this illustrated. We also see a veiled prophecy of the virgin birth illustrated here. Simple biology teaches that the man brings the seed to the conception process, but here we see God make reference to the Seed of the woman - the only time this occurs is in the birth of Jesus. And the promise of the Adamic Covenant is that, although Lucifer would bruise the heel of the Seed, the Seed would ultimately crush Lucifer’s head. Before we look at the pronouncements of the Adamic Covenant upon Adam and Eve, we have to put ourselves in their place. At this point they have no hope; no future. We know that the serpent is Lucifer. We know that the Seed is Jesus. We know that Lucifer would “bruise His heel” at the Crucifixion. We know that Jesus would crush Lucifer’s head at the Resurrection and, ultimately, after the final rebellion of Revelation 20. Adam and Eve do not. All Adam and Eve know is that their rebellion has ruined Paradise. They know that the intimacy with God that they were created for has been broken. They know, for the first time, what good and evil are. But these words of God offer a glimmer of light. If there is enmity between the woman and the serpent, and between their seeds, than that must mean that humanity has a future? But that future would be difficult. For the woman, childbirth and conception would be hard, and she would be ruled by men. For the man, work would now be difficult and, at times, seem to be fruitless. And both would face physical death, just as they were now spiritually dead. They are expelled from the Garden, and a cherub with a flaming sword cuts off their ability to partake of the Tree of Life in the center. But not until after God has given them a covering for the manifestation of their guilt. Genesis 3:21 says, “Also for Adam and his wife the LORD God made tunics of skin, and clothed them. For the very first time, God slaughters an animal - maybe even a lamb - and uses that death to cover man’s guilt. It doesn’t take long for the reality of spiritual death to sink in. Cain kills Abel out of jealousy, and the downward cycle continues. Just a few hundred years pass before humanity has become so evil that God regrets creating it: Genesis 6:6-8 – “And the LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. So the LORD said, ‘I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them.” But even as the Creator of the Universe makes plans to wipe out humanity, His grace, mercy and faithfulness to the Covenant made with Adam, shine through: Genesis 6:8 – “But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.”
TomorrowA look at the Noahic Covenant - God's blueprint for the conduct of the Gentile world.