I may or may not get to preach or teach before Christmas, so I wanted to take the time to blog this. As a result of the disobedience of man in Genesis 3, God doles out punishment to all parties involved. To the serpent, He says,
Because you have done this, cursed are you above all livestock and above all beasts of the field; on your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life. I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.
In the immediate context, it's not clear who "He" will be, but on the New Testament side of history, it becomes clear. From the seed of the woman - the next Adam - would come the one who would have victory over Satan. And while Adam and Eve couldn't have known what it meant, in that moment of God's anger and righteous judgment, we see the grace that is the very essence of who God is.
I preached recently that God is in the business of saving people. We see that here - even while God was sending down a curse upon humanity, He had a plan to beat the curse. While Satan had previously only had enmity with God, he would now have enmity with man, and through humanity, God would provide the answer for the sin problem. Here, at the fall of man, we see a foreshadowing of the Gospel.
The story of Christmas is the beginning of the Gospel - that God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself. God became the man Jesus so that by Him, we could have access and communion with God. Not only that, but that our sinfulness would be put upon Christ, so that Christ's righteousness would be placed upon us, and we can look forward to, one day, being caught up to spend eternity in heaven with Christ. But this story, this great story of love, grace, and redemption, it starts in a manger. It starts with a virgin, and a star, and a decree by Caesar, and a trip to Bethlehem. This is where the entire Gospel starts - with Christmas.
And that's what I love about Christmas.