January 8

Genesis 3:15 (NIV) 15And 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."

This is the first declaration in Scripture that God would deal with sin, and it is made to Satan in the earshot of Adam and Eve. It is in the same chapter as the fall of man. As God is pronouncing the affects of sin upon their lives and the world in which they live, He also gives man a promise and Satan a warning. First there is the declaration that there will be hatred between Satan and man. The seed, or offspring, of the woman will be in conflict with the offspring of Satan. Satan is out to kill, steal, and destroy. (John 10:10) But there is one Seed (singular) that will specifically take on Satan and crush his head (authority and rule). This promise tells us that the Victor will be a male descendent of Eve.

God was quick to give mankind a hope to look forward to by faith. People living before Christ looked forward to the Victor of the enemy of their souls, by faith, just as we look back with faith. We all trust that the crushing of Satan's head was sufficient to rescue us from Satan's authority, the authority over us that our sin gave him. In the process the Savior's heel was struck. Archeologists have discovered that crucified victims were nailed through the heel bone. Jesus' heels were pierced like the two teeth fangs of the serpent, one through each heel. In the process, Satan's head was crushed. Satan tried to bite our Savior, but the bite resulted in his defeat and our salvation. The promise has been fulfilled.

Consider: Are you living free from the authority of that defeated one and in the power of the risen Victor?

January 8

Micah 2:11 (NIV) 11If a liar and deceiver comes and says, 'I will prophesy for you plenty of wine and beer,' he would be just the prophet for this people!

3:8 (NIV) 8But as for me, I am filled with power, with the Spirit of the LORD, and with justice and might, to declare to Jacob his transgression, to Israel his sin.

3:11 (NIV) 11Her leaders judge for a bribe, her priests teach for a price, and her prophets tell fortunes for money. Yet they lean upon the LORD and say, "Is not the LORD among us? No disaster will come upon us."

Micah, the name means "Who is like Jehovah", is speaking to the tendency in man to welcome the predictions of blessing, even while injustice is rampant. Man would prefer to believe that things will continue as they are, and that God does not judge. If someone comes and predicts prosperity, we readily swallow the message. We have prosperity preachers in our day also. Jesus says, "Take up your cross and follow me!" His example was anything but a life of prosperity in the physical. The allure of the material draws our flesh to reason against the Spirit.

In contrast, Micah says that he is full of power and the Spirit of the LORD, full of justice and might, to declare the sin of the people. God had anointed and empowered him to preach the wrath of God upon injustice and greed. Yet, in each of the three sections of Micah, we see the mercy of God in a promise of restoration and reign of the coming Messiah. There is only one solution to the heart of man, the Messiah, our Savior. When we speak out against sin, we are often condemned as being critical, and legalistic. If we want the power of the LORD and His Spirit upon us, we must speak the truth.

The leaders no longer labored for the Lord, but for financial gain. Did they even know that the anointing had left their ministry and that they faced the impending judgments of God?

Consider: Speaking the truth will often cost us the world's favor, but the favor of God is incomparably more desirable.