The Big Four (Watershed Events in Judeo-Christian History)
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Genesis 3:15 "And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel."
The above passage is one of the fundamental points of the Bible. Let's examine why. First, enmity is defined as a deep-seated hatred. In this passage, God is speaking to four "transgressors." God is speaking to the snake that is the animal; he speaks to the evil spirit that inhabits that animal. God speaks to both man and woman, and he figuratively speaks to all of mankind and womankind.
"And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers..." Here, God has laid a curse- the first judgement of many to come that he lays on mankind. He states clearly that the woman's offspring (seed) and the offspring of Satan will hate each other. They will have a deep-seated mutual hatred for each other.
This is part of a WATERSHED event in the Judeo-Christian religion. In every sense, it is a watershed event in human history. Actually, the watershed event is when Eve ate the fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, thus bringing sin into the world. God's judgement results in enmity eternally placed between two peoples. This judgement is the EFFECT of that sin, just as a hurricane is a watershed event which has permanent effects- like a island divided in two pieces, or lives lost.
God goes on to address both the snake and mankind; also placing a mutual hatred between the two species. But, it is the first portion of the text- the important part- which I want to dwell on here.
This enmity that God puts into place has two immediate effects that are tied to one another. First is the actual enmity itself which sets in motion a chain of events that have played out through history and continue today. Second, by placing this judgement, God has MARKED or identified his people. His seed is Adam and Eve's seed.
Of course one could argue that we all come from Adam and Eve, but the real point is that we have to remember that Jesus is directly descended from Adam; by 76 generations (Luke 3:23-38) So, in this one action, God separates two groups of people, proclaims that they will not like one another, and he has IDENTIFIED his people which we will see him PURCHASE in the future. I will get to that in a minute, but for now think of it as a person in a store who spots something that he likes, and has made a point to come back and purchase before they leave the store.
Back to the enmity. This enmity is responsible for the Jews being tormented and hated by groups of people like the Philistines and the Moabites, etc. This enmity is responsible for there being a supernatural hatred of the Jews by all groups of people; even those who have never met a Jewish person. It is responsible for WWII and Hitler's concentration camps. This enmity is behind Osama, Al Qaeda, and everything going on with the Israeli-Arab conflict today. It is because of God's judgement that roughly one-third of all resolutions passed by the United Nations concern a little patch of land called Israel. And this enmity is the reason that people scoff and mock Christians.
PEOPLE WALKING IN THE DARK WILL NOT LIKE THOSE WALKING IN THE LIGHT. Plain and simple. This is set forth purposely by God and this judgement does not carry a sunset provision. This enmity will exist until the end.
Understanding this is CRUCIAL to understanding what it means to be Christian.
So, once you read the Bible and the Holy Spirit fills you with understanding, you will see that basically, there are 4 MAJOR WATERSHED EVENTS in Christian history.
1. Number one is the forementioned judgement- a foundational point in history. This separates people into two groups.
2. The Passover. The Passover is the second one. Now, remember that guy walking around in the store I talked about? See, God has labeled a group of people as his people. (Of course other events play an important role- like Abraham's test and eveything that results from that test- again marking God's people.) But, now after having identified his people, God has come to REDEEM his people. Redeem means to purchase. In a Christian context, God redeems through the blood- through the blood of another. In this case, God redeems or PURCHASES his people with the blood of every first born creature in Egypt. God gives a warning through Moses to all the people in that kingdom in that day. So this opportunity is not just open to Jews. Presumably, Egyptians could and some probably did cover their doorframes with the blood from a lamb. Those households were passed over at night by the Angel of Death, and they became God's chosen people- redeemed and PAID FOR by the blood of the households that did not. This redemption is permanent and can not be undone. This is a WATERSHED event. It is also a foreshadowing of the Cross.
3. Event number three is Christ's crucifixion. In the same manner as the passover above, Jesus pays for the sins of HIS people with HIS blood. HE is the lamb this time around. Like the first passover, it is a redemption that is offered to any willing to accept the offer. It goes beyond ethnicity or race. That purchase, like the passover, is permanent.
See, redeem means to purchase, and two things are necessary for redemption to take place. There must be a price, or value; and it is only good if there is someone to redeem it. Like a coupon for a dollar off a TV dinner. The transaction can only take place if you have the coupon, AND you have a place that will redeem it. Otherwise it is just a piece of paper with some ink on it. While salvation is a broad concept which includes redemption and faith and prayer, etc., redemption is very narrowly defined. YOU MUST HAVE A REDEEMER.
Two many other faiths and sects and people make this mistakes: they say---
I AM SAVED (because)
I BELIEVE (in God)
I ACCEPT (he existance of God)
Do you see all the I's here? Is there a REDEEMER here?
See, redeeming or redemption (THE PURCHASE OF YOUR SOUL) is only possible through Jesus Christ- with the Blood of Jesus Christ. That is what happened on the cross. Jesus personally purchased YOU. (Those of you who accept him). Once he does, you belong to him- eternally.
4. EVENT NUMBER FOUR has not happened yet. But it will involve separation of people into two groups- the sheep from the goats- the same outcome as the first three watershed events.
The ultimate and FINAL separation of the sheep from the goats. Think about it.
by Charles Lance Bailey 2003©
"leading people to Jesus Christ"
(scripture quotes - NIV)
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