Photo: The Garden of Gods (National Park, Colorado)
I absolutely love being outdoors, especially in the Southwest. One breathtaking place in particular—the Garden of the Gods—is one of the most photographed views in the region, and it's easy to see why. These sandstone rock formations tower over me at up to three hundred feet high, their red surfaces made even more dramatic against the bright blue sky. I read something interesting about this place as I was preparing for this journey. It said, "This park has unique and sensitive soil that is easily damaged. Even one person off trail can create decades of destruction."
That's not unlike what happened in the creation account, when Satan determined to destroy what God loves. And what God loves is us—me and you. When God made the first human beings, they were utterly unique, the pinnacle of His creation. He called them good, and they enjoyed intimate, unblemished fellowship with their Maker.
Fueled by jealousy and hatred, Satan immediately moved into their garden with his deceptive tactics. With one conversation—one question, really—humankind went off trail, and death and destruction have permeated the world ever since. Adam's disobedience allowed sin to enter the human race like a virus, and that virus opened up an insurmountable gap between God and us.
You might say that was the beginning of the end. But, fortunately for us, God planned for the end from the beginning. What if I told you that the crucifixion began in the garden? That redemption started with one bite of an apple?
Genesis 3:15 records an interesting conversation between God and a snake. Actually, it was an entirely one-sided conversation. God told the serpent—who is the Devil and Satan—that He would send someone who would crush his head, and that the serpent would merely bruise His heel. What does that mean? It is, undoubtedly, a strange prediction, but this is the prediction that marks the first stitch in the story of redemption. Someone would come to crush the one who had deceived them. But who?
To find out, we have to leave the garden behind and follow HIM!
GOD BLESS YOU.
About the author: Skip Heitzig is a native of Southern California and experienced the volatile days of the counter-culture in the late '60's and early '70's. Though raised in a religious home, Skip saw religion as a dead-end street with no answers. As a young musician, he got caught up in drugs and was arrested for two felonies. By 18, he had ventured into the spirit world of astral projection and automatic writing, again finding no answers. By 1973, the Jesus Movement was in full swing, with many young people committing their lives to Jesus Christ. This also happened to be the same year Skip left his family's home and moved to the San Francisco Bay area to enroll in college and escape his Christian friends who were trying to "convert" him. But God had a different plan for Skip's life. One day, alone in his brother's apartment in San Jose, Skip was watching TV and became mesmerized by Billy Graham. The gospel message penetrated Skip's soul, and he knelt down and prayed to receive Christ. Read his book here.