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Head and Heel

July 24, 2019
By Martin Luther

"He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel."

GENESIS 3:15

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Head and Heel

See how uneven the outcome of the battle is. The human being's heel is in danger, but his head is uninjured and undefeated. On the other hand, it is not the tail and not the belly of the serpent but the head itself that is to be crushed and trodden underfoot by the Seed of the woman. But this victory will also be given to us as a gift, as Christ clearly states (Luke 11:22): "The spoils are divided after the defeat of the mighty one." By faith the Christian is made the victor over sin, over the Law, and over death, so that not even the gates of hell can prevail against him (Matthew 16:18). This first comfort, this source of all mercy and fountainhead of all promises, our first parents and their descendants learned with the utmost care. They saw that without this promise procreation would indeed continue to go on among people as well as among the other living beings, but that it would be nothing else than a procreation to death. And so that gift which was given by God to our nature is here made greater, nay, even made sacred; for there is hope of a procreation through which the head of Satan would be crushed, not only to break his tyranny but also to gain eternal life for our nature, which was surrendered to death because of sin.

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