- Published: 14 April 2011
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I have never heard of whatever this false seed is? They were sinners born and bred. Also I believe at the great white throne judgement, there will be tares there. That is when all is said and done. Just my thoughts. Maybe I am wrong.
Thanks for listening.
God bless your beautiful heart and thank you for writing and sorry this reply took so long but we wanted to help you with a careful answer. The Bible is the record of Gods purpose in the Ages, a record that reveals a spiritual foe of great power, and a conflict that involves two seeds, as indicated in the primeval prophecy of Genesis 3:
- I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise His heel (Gen. 3:15).
Our first investigation must be into the words employed. We observe that the word seed as found in the A.V. is a translation of either the Hebrew words zera or perudoth, or of the Greek words sperma, sporos, spora or speiro. The word perudoth, The seed is rotten under their clods (Joel 1:17) need not detain us, it is derived from the Hebrew word parad to be separated or scatter, and does not occur elsewhere. The word zera is the word that we must consider both in its primitive meaning and in its usage. This word is derived from zara to spread or scatter as in Zechariah 10:9 I will sow them among the people. In two passages zera is translated child (Lev. 22:13; 1 Sam. 1:11), but the most frequent translation of the word is seed. It enters into the composition of the name Jezreel Sown of God (Hos. 1:4).
The word seed is used in the Scriptures of man, of beast and of plant, and indicates either the germ of life, secreted in animals from the blood, or their progeny, offspring or fruit. We meet the word seed in the first chapter of Genesis, where the substantive occurs six times, and the participle, translated bearing and yielding in relation to seed, three times. The herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself (Gen. 1:11). In the first case, this is a statement of a material fact, but the record of Genesis 1 has more in it than the record of material creation. Pauls use of Genesis 1:2,3 in 2 Corinthians 4:6 For God, Who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts is an indication that this record sub-serves a spiritual purpose. We are therefore prepared to find that what is said of the seed of herb and of fruit tree will be also true of the seed in its highest and spiritual sense. Three items call for notice.
- The expression yielding seed or as it is literally, seeding seed, brings before us the initial fact that a succession, a progeny is in view.
- The statement after its kind, assures us that the continuance or succession preserves its relationship and likeness to the parent seed. Intermixture is apparently disallowed.
- Whose seed is in itself further impresses us with the bounds that are set, and which are not to be transgressed.
The power and purpose of a seed to continue the line and have successors or progeny, and its relation to the creation of man, made for a little lower than the angels, should be noted. So far as we know, angels are separate creations, they neither marry nor are given in marriage and have no seed. Adam, by his creation was allied to the animal world, in that he could be the father of the succeeding race, and so was distinguished from the angelic world where progeny is unknown. In this, the Scripture suggests that he was a figure of Him that was to come, the Second Man, and the last Adam, Who in a higher and spiritual sense was also to seed His seed. Unlike the angels, all men are derived from a common ancestor, all are made of one blood, and the teaching of Romans 5 shows that Adam and Christ stand as type and anti-type and that as by one mans disobedience many were constituted sinners, so by the obedience of One shall many be constituted 'righteous, mankind being organically one as the angels never could be. When Seth was born, his mother called his name Seth, for God, said she, hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew (Gen. 4:25). Here we have the attack upon the true seed, its preservation, and a hint of the doctrine of Substitution.
The Ark was prepared by Noah at the command of God with the express purpose of keeping seed alive upon the face of all the earth (Gen. 7:3), and the destruction of all flesh by the flood is intimately connected with the abnormal alliance of the sons of God, the daughters of men, and their resulting hybrid progeny, the seed of the serpent in fact. With the true seed, thus preserved, the covenant of Genesis 9:9 was made. The next reference to a seed is that of Genesis 12:7 where the promise of God to Abraham is expressed in the one sentence Unto thy seed will I give this land.
The history of the Bible is largely that of the conflict between two seeds and the narrowing line through which the true seed came. In the time of Noah, it was indicated that through the line of Shem the seed should come, and of the descendants of Shem, the family of Abraham was chosen. Ishmael is passed by and Isaac is chosen. Esau is set aside and Jacob chosen. Of the sons of Jacob, Judah is chosen, and of Judah, came the family of David and so on unto the birth of Christ at Bethlehem. We are, however, conscious that in thus stating the case, we have narrowed our survey down to One, namely Christ, whereas it is perfectly clear from Scripture that the seed of Abraham was to be multiplied as the stars of heaven or as the sand of the seashore. We must return accordingly to Genesis 3, where the great prophecy concerning the Seed of the Woman is recorded, and consider it more closely.
It is however impossible to hope to arrive at any clear understanding of the import of Genesis 3:15 if we do not see its relation with the surrounding context. We must go back at least to Genesis 2:18-20 where we read that the animal creation were caused to pass before Adam who named them all, yet, adds the passage For Adam there was not found an help meet for him. Common and uncritical usage has introduced into our language the word Helpmeet, which, first being improperly hyphened, was then taken to mean Help-mate. This however does not fully express the truth intended. True, the wife is a help-mate, but the intention of Genesis 2:18 goes deeper. The Hebrew reads ezer help, ki as, and neged the front part, the front of a thing next to the speaker, before, in the presence of, over against. The LXX translates these words, once by kat auton according to him (Gen. 2:18), and homoios auto like to himself (Gen. 2:20). Here it is insisted that the principle already enunciated after its kind operates in the matter of man and marriage. The process whereby the woman was brought to man illustrates the principle whose seed is in itself.
Man by his constitution is called a being that breathes. God breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul (Gen. 2:7); All flesh, wherein is the breath of life (Gen. 7:15). The word translated rib is translated chamber on two occasions, and may mean a cell, and in the LXX is rendered by the word pleura and is associated with the lungs or breathing. Woman was evidently, like the seed in the plant, after its kind. Adam looked upon the woman brought to him as a help meet for him and said This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh. Jacobs in the Anthologia Palatina shows that the Greek word pleura was used for a wife. The progeny of such a pair must be unmixed and after its kind.
Another matter of importance is the evident relation of Genesis 2:25 with 3:1. In both verses the Hebrew word arom is found. In Genesis 2:25 it is translated naked. The spelling of the word can be shown in English as arohm, and in 3:1 where it is translated subtil, the spelling of the word can be shown in English as aroom. In the first occurrence the primitive meaning of nudity is retained, in the second occurrence the secondary meaning to be cunning or crafty in a bad sense is intended. The figure of the seed is however not quite out of mind, although to the modern and Western reader there is nothing to call up the idea of seed. When the word translated naked takes the feminine form in the plural aremah, it is then translated heap of corn (Ruth 3:7), and this was because the corn was naked or stripped of husk and straw, the threshing being done on the spot. To this the apostle refers in 1 Corinthians 15:37. Speaking of the present mortal body and of the resurrection body, he says, bare grain. Here the word translated is gymnos naked, and is so translated in connection with resurrection in 2 Corinthians 5:3 we shall not be found naked. Adam and his wife were bare grain stripped of all that is suggested by chaff or husk. Bare or naked grain was ready for sowing, ready to be fruitful and multiply. We are reminded in 1 Corinthians 15 moreover that to every seed its own body is as true in the spiritual relation of resurrection as it is in the physical creation. The body of the believer, like the body of Adam is at first natural, and afterward in resurrection spiritual, for, there is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. The natural body is that which we receive from the first man Adam, the spiritual body we receive from the second Man, the Lord from heaven, the last Adam. This associates the believer with Adam and with Christ and the two bodies that are in view, are embraced in the figure of the image.
- As we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly (1 Cor. 15:49).
- I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise His heel (Gen. 3:15).
in the Unfolding Purpose
Before concentrating upon the actual terms of this prophecy in germ, let us take a large view. The last of the prophets is Malachi, and he it is that points back to Genesis 2 and 3, and by so doing brings the whole of the Old Testament revelation concerning the seed to a completion. When we open the New Testament we are confronted with a genealogy, The book of the generation of Jesus Christ as the Son of David, the Son of Abraham, and in a peculiar sense the Son of a woman, Who is nevertheless Emmanuel God with us, and on the last page of the New Testament we read of Him Who is both the Root as well as the Offspring of David. We have therefore Old Testament and New Testament linked together as prophecy and fulfillment, by these four passages.
A Genesis 1 to 3. The Seed of the Woman.
- B Malachi 2:10-16. The Seed of God.
- B Revelation 22:16. The Root and Offspring of David.
- a 10. Covenant of fathers.
- b 11. Treacherous dealing.
- B 11 The daughter of a strange god.
- b Treacherous dealing.
- a Covenant of marriage.
- B 15 A seed of God.
In the prophecy of Daniel, we see very clearly that the strange god will be associated with the blasphemous beast of the time of the end (Dan. 11:39), and in the forecast of Gentile dominion Daniel reveals that at the time of the end some shall mingle themselves with the seed of men (Dan. 2:43), which suggests that as it was in the days of Noah so shall it be at the time of the end. To make the people of Israel aware of their profanation, the prophet Malachi leads them back to Genesis 2, Did not He make one? Both the record of Genesis 2:18-25, and the comment of the Saviour in Matthew 19:4-6 stress the fact that to Adam God gave one wife. Yet, continued the prophet, this limitation was not due to any deficiency, He had the residue of the spirit (or breath), and could have provided Adam with a number of wives, had He so intended. At marriage man and wife become one flesh, and this holy unity is designed by God to further His purpose; He sought thereby a seed of God. This fact will become more evident when we are examining the teaching of Scripture concerning the seed of the serpent.
Coming to the genealogy of Matthew 1 we observe that it is the book of the generations of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham, the Son of Mary, Emmanuel, God with us. In that genealogy there is a name that strikes us, it is Zorobabel. We have already seen that the Hebrew word for seed is zera and so Zorobabel, or Zerubbabel as it is written in the Old Testament speaks either of the seed, or the shoot of Babel or Confusion, or of those who were scattered in Babylon. It is arresting, whatever its primary meaning may be for another reason, and that is its place in the genealogy found in Luke 3. Zerubbabel is called the son of Shealtiel or Salathiel (Ezra 3:2,8; Hag. 1:1; Matt. 1:12; Luke 3:27), but in 1 Chronicles 3:19 he is called the son of Pedaiah, the brother of Salathiel (17,18).
We may not know just exactly what occurred, but that something of importance happened we gather by consulting the genealogy given in Luke 3. There, we read once more of Zorobabel and Salathiel (Luke 3:27). At first one may see nothing remarkable in this fact. Are not Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and David found in both genealogies? Why should not these two men figure in both? The answer is that David had two sons Solomon and Nathan. The line that is pursued in Matthews genealogy is that through Solomon, but the line pursued by Luke is that through Nathan. Now no man can be the son of his own uncle, and consequently when we read in Luke that Salathiel was the son of Neri who was in direct descent from Nathan, we must understand the expression to mean son in law and this is substantiated by examination of the passage.
Jesus Himself began to be about thirty years of age, being legally reckoned (nomizo) the son of Joseph, who in his turn was legally reckoned the son of Heli. Heli was the father of Mary (Doctor John Lightfoot quoting Hieros Chagigah), and Joseph the son of Jacob (Matt. 1:16) became his son by marriage. There is however more in this genealogy than meets the eye. To illustrate our point, let us turn back to Genesis 36. It is clear from verses 24 and 25 that Anah was a man. He fed his fathers asses, and was the father of Aholibamah his daughter. With this knowledge let us read Genesis 36:2. Aholibamah the daughter of Anah the daughter of Zibeon.
This reads, on the surface, as though Anah a man, is called the daughter of Zibeon. The truth is of course that the genealogy should read, Aholibamah was the daughter of her father Anah, and so Aholibamah was also the daughter of Zibeon, not that her father Anah was the daughter of Zibeon. So, when we read in the genealogy of the Saviour, the words which was the son of that recur throughout, they refer always to Christ.
- Jesus (as was legally reckoned) the son of Joseph, and so the son of Heli, and at length the son of Adam and finally the Son of God.
If we would be fully equipped, we must give our attention to the teaching of Scripture regarding the Seed of Abraham, the Seed of David, the bearing of Romans 16:20 upon the prophecy of Genesis 3:15, the purpose of the words relative to the parable of the Sower How then will ye know all parables? (Mark 4:13), and the words of Galatians 3:16 and 29 Not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ, Then are ye Abrahams seed, but some of these aspects must be omitted in the present survey.
the Preservation of the Seed
If it had been the Divine intention to have satisfied the human mind with a scientific explanation of Creation, can we hope that 939 chapters, or the whole of the Old Testament would have been sufficient? Had it been the Divine intention to have put on record a history of the world, then inasmuch as there are seventy nations listed in Genesis 10, at least seventy separate Bibles would have been necessary. Nor is this all, even though we have so great a literature of Israel, we are obliged to admit that the half has not been told. In some cases we have a fairly detailed account of some episode in a familys history, in other cases, the reign of a king is compressed into a few verses. When we become aware that the Bible is concerned with Redemption, and Redemption is concerned with sin and death, then its apparent disproportion suddenly takes new shape, its omissions are readily understood, and the call of Abraham and the history of the chosen people are seen in something of their true light.
Now closely allied with redemption is the purpose of God in the Seed, and it is because the channel through which the Seed should come is narrowed down to the line of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, that the history of Israel becomes the history of the conflict between the seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent. References to the seed form the link between Adam and Abraham. The attack by Cain upon his brother Abel manifested the enmity that existed between the two seeds, and the birth of Seth was acclaimed with the joyful words God hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew (Gen. 4:25). The line of Cain is given in Genesis 4:16-24, a line containing names identical in some cases, and similar in others, to names that are found in the true line through Seth, an indication and a warning, that deception and misdirection are the methods adopted by the Enemy to divert the testimony of the Scriptures away from the true seed, to the false.
Cains first child is called Enoch, and so, when Jude would refer to Enoch who walked with God, he is careful to speak of him as the seventh from Adam (Jude 14). The succeeding names in the line of Cain, namely Irad, Methusael, and Lamech who boasted of his prowess and used the phrase sevenfold and seventy and sevenfold, are not unlike the names that occur in Genesis 5, namely Jared, which differs from Irad by one letter, and Methuselah which could easily be confused with Methusael, while Lamech who made no boast like his evil name-sake, nevertheless has this in common, that he lived seven hundred and seventy and seven years. This Lamech had a son Noah, the other Lamech had two sons, with whom the line of Cain ends.
When the genealogy came to be written as a preface to the book of the true succession, it reads Adam, Sheth, Enosh (1 Chron. 1:1), and the name of Cain is blotted out of the record, never occurring after Genesis 4, in the remainder of the Old Testament. A son was born to Seth, whom he called Enos, and the Scripture adds as a comment Then began men to call upon the name of the Lord (Gen. 4:26). As the passage stands in the A.V., it would give cause for rejoicing to think that, consequent upon the extinction of the line of Cain and the continuance of the line through Seth, godliness was now established in the earth. It is however evident from the early pages of Genesis, that men called upon the name of the Lord before the days of Enos, and that extreme ungodliness had so developed by the time that Enoch lived, as to call for the pronouncement of judgment by the Lord (Jude 15), and the prophecy of the coming Flood, for the name of Enochs son, Methuselah, means At his death it shall be.
That there was something hidden beneath the surface in Genesis 4:26 the following notes will make evident. The LXX inserts the verb elpizo to hope and reads as follows: ... Enos: he hoped to call on the nam e of the Lord. The translators of the A.V. also were not quite satisfied, for they insert in the margin the words Or, to call themselves by the name of the Lord. Now one may call himself by the name of the Lord for good, or for evil reasons, and there is a persistent tradition from early days, to show that the Rabbinical interpretation of these words understood them to be evil in intent. The Targum of Onkelos reads: then in his days the sons of men desisted from praying in the name of the Lord. The Targum of Jonathan says: That was the generation in whose days they began to err, and to make themselves idols, and surnamed their idols by the name of the Word of the Lord. Rashi reads:
- Then was there profanation in calling on the name of the Lord,
The word translated began is the Hebrew verb chalal, but the idea of beginning is entirely secondary. Chalal primarily means to perforate or pierce through. Thus to wound Psalm 109:22; Isaiah 53:5. From this primitive meaning comes the derived sense of laying open, giving access to and so to profane as one might a sanctuary (Lev. 19:8), and is used of profaning seed (Lev. 21:15). Chalal is translated in the A.V. be defiled, polluted, profaned, and prostitute, seventy times! The word chalal occurs in Genesis just eight times, and we give the references in order to provide every help possible in arriving at a true understanding of the passage before us:
4:26 Then began men to call upon the name of the Lord.
6:1 When men began to multiply.
9:20 Noah began to be an husbandman.
10:8 Nimrod ... he began to be a mighty one.
11:6 This they begin to do.
41:54 The seven years of dearth began to come.
44:12 He searched, and began at the eldest.
49:3,4 Reuben ... then defiledst thou it.
It is not without significance that the one occasion in Genesis where the verb chalal is translated defile, the reference is to Reuben who committed a defiling sin against his father and so lost the excellency of the firstborns position. Here was a most definite attempt to pollute the seed and is but one of many similar attempts that are recorded in the book of Genesis. The second reference, Genesis 6:1 is recorded as a preface to the violation of Gods will by the sons of God, another attack upon the seed. Even the innocent record Noah began to be an husbandman is but a preface to his drunkenness and the illegitimate begetting of Canaan (Gen. 9:20-27), (see later in this article) and Nimrod stands as the head of the abomination that is associated with Babylon throughout the entire Word of God.
Genesis 11:6 also is connected with Babylonian rebellion, this they begin to do being balanced by which they have imagined to do. The reader will see, therefore, that there is good ground for the suggested translation began to profanely call in Genesis 4:26. Eminent and learned men are of opinion that the word rendered began should be translated began profanely; and that the spirit of inspiration has recorded the fact in this place, as being the first public step in that course of audacious impiety which was rapidly manifesting itself, and by which the ambitious and infidel leaders arrogated to themselves the name, prerogatives and attributes of Divinity (Robt. Jamieson D.D.).
The line of Cain might be extinct, but the Enemy of truth was still active, and was preparing the minds of men for the next invasion of humanity and attack upon the purity of the seed, as revealed in Genesis 6. The next occurrence of the word seed in Genesis is found in chapter 7, where the purpose of the Ark is indicated to keep seed alive upon the face of all the earth (Gen. 7:1-3). Something most terrible must have taken place since the days of Enos, for so marvellous a provision for the preservation of seed to be called for. That terrible thing was the corruption of mans way upon the earth, and the consequent threat of a deluge. Genesis 6 deals with a phenomenon so unnatural that the mind at first turns from it and searches for a more reasonable interpretation than that which lies upon the surface. As this chapter is to the world of Noah and his three sons, what Genesis 3 is to Adam and the entire race, we must spare no pains in our endeavor to understand its teaching. Who, and what are the sons of God? In what way could such beings take to themselves wives? and how could such wives bear them children? How are we to understand the word giants? and what is the meaning of the words And after that in Genesis 6:4? What is the significance of the word perfect when applied to Noah (Gen. 6:9), and what the intention of the words all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth? (Gen. 6:12). These subjects should be studied by the student of the Bible in the context of the seed of the serpent.
- But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord (Gen. 6:8).
These gracious repentings we can perhaps understand, but it is strange indeed to read that the Lord repented that He had made man. In the first place we may say that repenting and being grieved at the heart are instances of the figure of speech known as anthropopatheia, a figure which ascribes human attributes to God. The Hebrews called this mode of speech Derek Benai Adam The way of Adam, and without such condescension on the part of God, man could never apprehend His revelation. But conceding all this, and admitting that the use of such parts of the body as face, nostril, eyes, ears and hands with reference to God are accommodations to our limitations, we nevertheless believe that they stand for realities, even though we can affix to such spiritual realities no human name.
In like manner, though we may not take the words grief, anger, jealousy and other similar affections and feelings at their surface value, we nevertheless know that they stand for something equivalent on the high plane of Divine experience. Consequently we are to gather from Genesis 6:6, that something of extreme antipathy to the purpose of God and creation had come in and spoiled the work of Gods hands, grieved His heart, and made Him repent that He had made man. In the language of the parable, the reason is found in the fact that an enemy hath done this, and that with reference to two sowings of seed (Matt. 13:28). Throughout the Bible we have the consciousness of a conflict, a conflict between good and evil, darkness and light, God and Satan, and that the battle is intensely real, making demands upon the Wisdom and Power of the Almighty, and culminating in the sparing not of His Beloved Son. If such inroads had been made into the nature of mankind by the evil one, that it could be said, all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth, then God must act and act drastically if the situation were to be saved. The word translated corrupt in Genesis 6:11 and 12, and the word translated destroy in Genesis 6:17 is the Hebrew shachath. The only remedy was to destroy it (de facto) as it had become destroyed (de jure) (The Companion Bible). At the time of the sounding of the seventh angel, the wheel has come full circle, as it was in the days of Noah and we read that the time had come to destroy them which destroy (or corrupt) the earth (Rev. 11:18). Standing separate and almost alone in the midst of well nigh universal corruption was Noah. It is not without significance that the name Noah is derived from the selfsame Hebrew word translated repent. The Hebrew word is nacham and is found for the first time in Scripture in the words of Lamech This same shall comfort us (Gen. 5:29), and refers to the Ark and the Flood. The next occurrence of nacham is in Genesis 6:6 where it is written it repented the Lord. The reason why the one Hebrew word can have such opposite meanings is that primarily nacham means a change of mind or affection and obviously the mind may change sometimes in one way, sometimes in another. God changed His mind regarding mankind as a whole and destroyed them, He changed His mind about Noah in particular and saved him. What constituted the essential difference between Noah and the rest of mankind? We shall find upon examining the history of Israel that they are denounced as wicked, and corrupt and evil, yet even though enemies because of the gospel, they are beloved because of the fathers, for the gifts and calling of God are without repentance (Rom. 11:29). Israel, for all their sins were the chosen seed, and so were saved. Even after the Flood, the words are written I will not again curse the ground any more for mans sake; for (although, Heb. ki) the imagination of mans heart is evil from his youth (Gen. 8:21). What was it that the Lord saw in the generation before the flood that demanded total destruction? It was the corrupting of the seed, and it is the separation of Noah from this that marks him out in Genesis 6.
- These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God (6:9).
This word, which translates the Hebrew tamim means without blemish and primarily refers to physical, not moral perfection. It is in constant use to describe the blemishless character of a sacrificial animal (Exod. 12:5; Lev. 1:3). Job was described as perfect, as well as upright (Job. 1:1,8; 2:3), and Jacob is described as a plain man (Gen. 25:27), using the same word as is employed in Job and translated perfect, while undefiled is the translation of the word in Song of Solomon 5:2 and 6:9. The testimony of Genesis 6:9 is that Noah was uncontaminated so far as his pedigree was concerned, and the channel through which the Seed of the Woman could come, though narrowed down by the well nigh universal corruption that had set in, was still preserved.
As we proceed with the history of the Seed of the Woman we shall assemble a series of Divine interpositions, each one marked by its own peculiar character, and together building up a system of teaching that points irrevocably to Christ. Let us note the following as a beginning of this special phase of truth:
- The Seed is diverted from Adam, at the Fall, and is referred to as The Seed of the Woman. This introduces the element of miracle or a dealing by God that is not natural. We must never lose sight of the supernatural associations of The Seed.
- The Seed is in the second place bound up with vicarious suffering. His heel shall be wounded in the conflict with the serpent.
- Ultimate victory is prophesied for the Seed of the Woman, for although in the conflict He shall be wounded in the heel, it is the head of the serpent that is bruised.
- The next principle that emerges is the principle of substitution. The attack upon Abel is countered by the appointment of Seth, or as the Hebrew reads, God hath Sethed me another seed. Seth was appointed instead of Abel whom Cain slew (Gen. 4:25).
- The sending of the Flood, and the destruction of every living person except the eight souls preserved in the Ark, or as Peter puts it, God spared not the old world, but saved Noah, reveals the solemn fact that the question of numbers does not enter into the plan. If the seed can be preserved, though it cost the destruction of millions, the Lord will do it. If such a conclusion should appear harsh, let us remember that the selfsame word spare is used of Christ He that spared not His own Son.
- The provision of the Ark introduces into the story another aspect of the redemptive side of the story of the seed. It is common knowledge with students that the noun and verb pitch it within and without with pitch (Gen. 6:14) translate the words kaphar and kopher, which are used by Moses and the rest of the Old Testament Scriptures for the propitiation made by the sacrificial offerings, indicating in fuller measure the nature of the bruising that should be received in the conflict with the serpent. It pleased the Lord to bruise Him said Isaiah, showing that even though wicked hands took and crucified the Son of God, that bruising of His heel was at the same time the sacrificial offering made for sin. The word bruise in Isaiah, however, is not the word used in Genesis 3.
- Finally, or at least so far as we have gone, the preservation of the seed is associated with newness of life, resurrection ground, the beginning of a new world, and a new day. This is forced upon the attention of the reader throughout the record of the Deluge by the fact that the date upon which the Ark rested on one of the mountains of Ararat, namely the seventeenth day of the seventh month, became after the revision of the calendar at the Passover (Exod. 12:2), the third day after the offering of the Passover on the fourteenth day of the month, and so the very day of the Saviours resurrection. The emphasis upon the first year the first month the first day in Genesis 8:13 carries the idea forward, while the numerical features associated with Noah (the eighth person) and his family (eight souls), each emphasizing the number eight and the commencing of a new period, round off this testimony to resurrection and newness.
- Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth (Gen. 9:1).
- Blessed be the Lord God of Shem ... he (Japheth) shall dwell in the tents of Shem.
- Unto Shem also, the father of all the children of Eber, the brother of Japheth the elder, even to him were children born (Gen. 10:21).
Shem had five sons, and Eber is the descendant of Arphaxad, the third of those that are named in Genesis 10:22. Now Eber had two sons, Peleg so named because in his days the earth was divided, and Joktan. Joktans descendants are named, but Pelegs descendants are reserved until The generations of Shem are given in Genesis 11:10, where Joktan finds no place. The line of the Seed therefore from Noah, runs as follows: Noah, Shem, Arphaxad, Eber, Peleg and so on to Terah, the father of Abram. Shem is called the father of all the children of Eber for this reason.
The record of Genesis 10 is the record of the nations, and the words By these were the nations divided in the earth show that the settlement of the nations and the lands inhabited by them is the important theme, and it is the descendants of Joktan and their lands that is recorded in Genesis 10 whereas, in Genesis 11 Joktan is omitted, but the generations of Peleg are given in detail and this proves to be of the most importance, for this is the line of the true seed. Our attention therefore is called to the fact that the line of Joktan does not exhaust the descendants of Shem. The two names Eber and Peleg demand our attention. The Hebrew name Eber means beyond, and occurs in such phrases as beyond Jordan, on this side Jordan or on the other side Jordan (Gen. 50:10; Num. 22:1; Josh. 2:10). The verb abarmeans to pass or to pass over and is often used in connection with the passing over of the Israelites into the land of Canaan (Deut. 12:10; Josh. 3:16). In Genesis 14:13 Abraham is called The Hebrew. This is partly explained in Joshua 24:2,3.
- Your fathers dwelt on the other side of the flood ... I took your father Abraham from the other side of the flood.
Rivers formed natural boundaries in ancient days, so much so that in English the word rival comes from the idea that men living on opposite banks of a river would be divided in their loyalties.
It is not true to say that the words of Genesis 10:25 the earth was divided cannot refer to the division of the earth as an inheritance, but only by some geological division as that which has formed the continents, for the feminine form of both the Hebrew and the Chaldee words is employed to speak of the division of both families and of the priests (2 Chron. 35:5; Ezra 6:18). In Pelegs day the earth was divided among the nations, according to the number of the children of Israel (Deut. 32:8). The reader will discover that there are seventy nations mentioned by name in Genesis 10, and the words When the Most High divided to the nations their inheritance, when He separated the sons of Adam, He set the bounds of the people according to the number of the children of Israel have regard to that number seventy.
- Seventy souls went down with Jacob into Egypt, that they might restore the seventy families by the confusion of tongues. For these seventy souls were equal to all the families of the whole world (Zohar).
- How good is thy love towards Me, O thou congregation of Israel? It is more than that of the seventy nations (Targum on the Song Solomon).
- The chapter begins with mans attempt to unify mankind, and ends with Gods new provision to unify all in blessing with Abrahams seed (The Companion Bible).
But Sarai was barren: she had no child (Gen. 11:30). So into the story of the coming seed is now interposed human inability, in order that it may be demonstrated that the true seed is indeed of God. This Hebrew word translated barren aqar, signifies a mere stock or stem without branches, a dry tree. Bateman says of Ecclesiastes 3:2, where the A.V. reads a time to pluck up, to lop as trees, cut them close to the stock or stem. This supernatural element is emphasized later in the story of Ishmael and Isaac, and a definite reference is made to it in Romans 9, where we read In Isaac shall thy seed be called, that is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed (Rom. 9:7,8).
Immediately following the statement concerning Sarais barrenness, comes the record of Terahs trek towards Canaan and his tarrying and death at Haran. We learn from Stephen in Acts 7:2, that The God of glory appeared unto our father Abraham, when he was in Mesopotamia, before he dwelt in Charran. Terah, it would appear was moved by the revelation given to his son, and took Abram, Lot and Sarai, but by so doing contravened the distinct commandment Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred moreover, although they went forth from Ur of the Chaldees to go into the land of Canaan they did not accomplish this purpose for we read they came unto Haran, and dwelt there. This partial obedience to the separating command of God, will be met again. For example in Exodus 8:25 where Pharaoh substitutes for the three days journey, Go ye, sacrifice to your God in the land or Sacrifice to the Lord your God in the wilderness: only ye shall not go very far away (Exod. 8:28).
According to Hebrews 11, Abraham when he obeyed God did not know the land that God had promised him, and so the language of Genesis 11:31 written after the event must be considered as supplemental. Terah, whose name among other meanings seems to be wanderer, was evidently moved by the call that had come to his son, but the thing to be noticed is that although he made that trek from Ur of the Chaldees, as far North as Haran, he never passed over the Euphrates. After 600 miles separation from Ur he still dwelt in the same country, and had in reality made no essential change. Terahs movement was like many religious movements, they fail in essentials.
Abraham was called The Hebrew for he passed over the dividing river. Terah was never a Hebrew. He came out of Ur but he died in Haran, a city of the same country. He had but changed one denomination for another. Terah died in Haran, and until he died he was a hindrance to faithful obedience. Terah represented the old man, who can be religious and do almost everything except pass over. Only when the old man (Rom. 6:6) dies, can the believer rise and walk in newness of life. We are however tracing the history of the Seed, and must not allow ourselves too many doctrinal excursions, but the reader will doubtless perceive that the spiritual history of the individual believer finds an echo many times in the record of the Seed and its conflict.
(1) The first prophecy of the Seed, Genesis 3:15
The bruising of head and heel.
(2) The second reference, Seth, 4:25
Instead -- the principle of substitution.
(3) The third reference, Noah, 5:29
Comfort because of curse.
(4) The fourth reference, The Ark, 6:14
(5) The fifth reference, Barrenness, 11:30
The flesh set aside.
These items will give the reader some idea of what we intend, but the above list is temporary, and will be revised when the subject is considered as a whole.
At the moment we are concerned with the onward progress of the true seed, and have reached the time when, at the death of Terah, Abraham was free to pass over and become Abraham the Hebrew. At Genesis 12, the nations of the earth go into the background and only come into the record as they touch the land and people of Israel. The channel through which the Seed should come is now narrowed down to one man, a descendant of Shem, and to that man a promise was given of a land and of a seed.
- Unto thy seed will I give this land (Gen. 12:7).
- And Terah took Abram ... to go into the land of Canaan; and they came unto Haran, and dwelt there (Gen. 11:31).
- And Abram ... went forth to go into the land of Canaan; and into the land of Canaan they came ... and the Canaanite was then in the land (Gen. 12:5,6).
- And Noah began to be an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard (Gen 9:20).
A comparison of Genesis 9 with what had previously been said of Adam will reveal several similarities. Among them let us notice Adam and Noah are both associated with a garden planted, indeed the Hebrew word nata to plant occurs in Genesis 1 to 11 but twice, namely at Genesis 2:8 The Lord God planted a garden and here in Genesis 9:20 Noahs downfall is connected with an act he drank of the wine, even as the fall of Adam is connected with eating the fruit of the forbidden tree. In both cases, there is a strange sequel. Adam and Noah are found naked the only references to nakedness in this early section of Genesis. Adam covered his nakedness with fig-leaves, Shem and Japheth covered the nakedness of their father with a garment. God subsequently clothed Adam with a coat of skin. The enmity between the two seeds is revealed to Adam, and the earth is cursed for his sake. When Noah awoke, he strangely cursed, not Ham, but the son of Ham, Canaan, who was doomed to be a servant of servants.
At the door of the garden of Eden, the Lord caused to tabernacle (placed Gen. 3:24) the Cherubim, and Noah continuing his prophecy, said He (the Lord) shall dwell ("tabernacle") in the tents of Shem (Gen. 9:27). These again being the only occurrence of shaken to dwell or tabernacle in Genesis 1 to 11.
These parallels are on the surface, but there is more, not so plainly stated but nevertheless implied. Is it not illuminating that immediately consequent upon the fall of man, the Lord should speak of child-birth (Gen. 3:16)? and is it not equally illuminating that Noah should speak of Canaan the unborn child of Ham, and not of Ham himself? In the case of Adam and Eve, there is the positive statement that Cain was of that wicked one (1 John 3:12), but nothing positive is said of Canaan, yet by the time one has read all that is written of the Canaanites, there is no room left for doubting that of Canaan it could have been written Canaan was of that wicked one also. In the record of Genesis 3 Adam is accompanied by his wife who is named and addressed. In Genesis 9, the wife of Noah is not specifically mentioned, but, when we remember that the expression thy fathers nakedness (Lev. 18:8) is definitely said to indicate thy fathers wife, and when we further know that the words spoken of Noah to be uncovered (Gen. 9:21) are the same as those used in Leviticus 18, the sin of Ham begins to assume a more serious aspect, a sin that brought with it a curse as we can see by reading Deuteronomy 27:20.
It appears from the combined testimony of the several passages, that Ham was guilty of the same sin as that of Reuben (Gen. 49:3,4), where the word defiled translates the Hebrew chalal already examined. If Ham, like Reuben, taking advantage of his fathers drunkenness was guilty of incest, the door was flung open once more for the Evil One to sow his seed, and the Canaanite was the dreadful result. The Canaanite would therefore take the place occupied by the giants before the Flood, and because the Seed was now known to be destined to come through Abraham, the Canaanite was concentrated in advance in the land of promise. The meaning of the word Canaan is, something low, and in a secondary sense, a merchant, trafficker or trader. The name Canaan carries with it the debasement pronounced by Noah as the following passages which use the verb kana will show to bring low (Job 40:12), to subdue (1 Chron. 17:10), to bring into subjection (Psa. 106:42). Their name reveals their end, the Canaanites whether physical or spiritual, must one day be subjected beneath the feet of the victorious Seed of the woman. When the time came for Isaac, the true seed to be provided with a wife, Abraham made his eldest servant sware by the God of heaven and by the God of the earth, that he would not take a wife for Isaac of the daughters of the Canaanites (Gen. 24:3). The Canaanites were to be driven out of the land of promise by Israel (Exod. 23:28), and by the Lord (Deut. 7:1); and were to be utterly destroyed (Deut. 20:17). Something of the horror with which this evil seed was held can be gathered by reading the whole of Ezra 9 and 10.
- The people ... have not separated themselves from the people of the lands, doing according to their abominations, even of the Canaanites ... the holy seed have mingled themselves with the people of those lands (Ezra 9:1,2).
- In that day there shall be no more the Canaanite in the house of the Lord of Hosts (Zech. 14:21).
- As Israel did unto the land of his possession, which the Lord gave unto them (Deut. 2:12).
With the opening of the New Testament we leave promise, and begin fulfillment, and as our salvation and hope are bound up with the realization of the promise of God concerning the seed, we must still give our attention to the unfolding of this great theme.
We observe that throughout the gospels, Christ is referred to as the Son of David, but when we consider the testimony of Paul, he avoids the title Son of David and uses the deeper and more significant title The Seed of David. At first sight this distinction may savour of hair-splitting, for He Who is the Seed of David must also be his Son. Yet on the other hand it is also true that he who is the son of David may not necessarily be his seed in the full significance of that term. We all know that Solomon was a son of David, and most of us will remember two other sons, Nathan and Absalom, but how many of us know that in the genealogy given in 1 Chronicles 3:1-9, there are nineteen sons named? Six were born in Hebron, four were born in Jerusalem, and nine are listed without specifying either the name of their mother or the place of their birth. Even this list of nineteen sons is not complete, for the Chronicler adds besides the sons of the concubines (1 Chron. 3:9). In the course of time Davids strength began to fail, and claimant voices began to be heard regarding succession to the throne:
- Adonijah the son of Haggith exalted himself, saying, I will be king (1 Kings 1:5).
- Didst not thou, my lord, O King, swear unto thine handmaid, saying, Assuredly Solomon thy son shall reign after me, and he shall sit upon my throne? why then doth Adonijah reign? (1 Kings 1:13).
Paul does not obtrude into the epistles to the Church a title that would confuse these two departments of their redemptive purpose, he omits the kingdom title and uses the deeper and more significant title the Seed of David. Not only so, he uses this title when writing the epistle to the Romans (1:3), and he uses it again after the dispensation of the Mystery had come in (2 Tim. 2:8), and Timothy is called upon to remember this relationship, and that it formed an integral part of that which Paul called especially my gospel. In both passages the resurrection is prominent. While therefore Davids son Solomon and his successors are the heirs to the throne, Christ alone as Davids Seed carries the great primeval promise of God to its glorious consummation.
The Syrophoenician woman was made to realize that in Christ as the Son of David she had no place (Matt. 15:22), but the Seed of David was declared to be the Son of God with power by the resurrection (Rom. 1:4), and the good news associated with Him in that capacity was addressed to both Jew and Gentile. While the succession to the throne came through Solomon, Marys line descends through Nathan, Solomons brother, and so in Matthew we have The Son of David with special reference to the king and kingdom, whereas in Luke 3 we have The Seed of the Woman descending from David, through Nathan and Mary. Luke was the evangelist who labored so faithfully with the apostle Paul, and it is Lukes account rather than Matthews that stresses The Seed. In like manner Christ is called The Son of Abraham (Matt. 1:1) but is never so called by Paul, for just as we found that Paul speaks of Christ as the Seed of David, so also does he speak of Christ as the Seed of Abraham.
- Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ (Gal. 3:16).
Turpies book on quotations refers Galatians 3:16 to Genesis 22:18. We feel however that Paul would remind us that he was meticulous in his quotation, even to the word and, and to thy seed, and consequently we must refer Galatians 3:16 to such texts as Genesis 17:7,8 or to Genesis 24:7, which in the LXX agrees with the words quoted in Galatians. To these passages can be added Genesis 13:15. It must be remembered that the Hebrew word zeraim seeds, in the plural means various kinds of grain, even as the plural spermata does in 1 Corinthians 15:38, and Ellicott says on this passage, We hold, therefore, that there is certainly a mystical meaning in the use of zera in Genesis 13:15 (and in 17:8): though the writer was not necessarily aware of it. If we read the context of Genesis 13:15, we are met with the stated fact that the word seed is used in the plural, for verse 16 goes on And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth ... so ... shall thy seed also be numbered. The same is true of the context of Genesis 17:8, for the words in their generations, which come in verse 7 and in their generations which is repeated in verse 9, show that the word seed is used in the plural. If we continue in our reading of Galatians 3, until we get to verse 29 we shall read:
- And if ye be Christs, then are ye Abrahams seed, and heirs according to the promise (Gal. 3:29).
(1 Cor. 15:24-28)
- And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly.
Psalm 8 looks in two directions, back to Adam and the limited dominion given to him, and forward to Christ, and the universal dominion given to Him. In Hebrews 2 the reference to the eighth Psalm is associated with His suffering and death, and to the world to come oikoumene. In 1 Corinthians 15 the reference to the eighth Psalm looks beyond the limitations of the habitable world, to the goal when God shall be all in all; while Ephesians 1 alludes to Psalm 8, when speaking of the principalities and powers that are subjected beneath the feet of Christ, in His capacity as Head over all things to the Church. The bruising of the serpents head was not accomplished however without extreme suffering on the part of the Great Deliverer -- He shall bruise His heel. It is not surprising that this primeval prophecy should have been known to the ancient world. The ancients confounded the name zeroashta the seed of the woman, interpreting the word ashta to mean fire, and so gave the name Zoroaster. Throughout the mythology of the ancient world, the struggle between the serpent and a Deliverer is well known.
- And while sublime his awful hands are spread,
- Beneath him rolls the dragons horrid head,
- And his right foot unmoved appears to rest,
- Fixed on the writhing monsters furnished crest
Here it will be observed, two words occur that are also found in Genesis 3:15 bruise shuph (shephiphon adder), and aqeb heel, and this fact must be kept in mind when translating Genesis 3:15 The apostle, in Romans 16:20 employs the word suntribo to translate shuph bruise. In Romans 3:16 the apostle uses the word in slightly different form, suntrimma, Destruction and misery are in their ways. Suntribo is translated elsewhere in the New Testament bruise (Matt. 12:20), break, or break in pieces (Mark 5:4; 14:3; Luke 4:18 [in the Received Text]; John 19:36 and Rev. 2:27). The English word triturate, to reduce to fine powder by rubbing, trite, worn out by constant use or repetition, tribulation, from the wearing down effect of a threshing instrument, and diatribe, a discourse which wears away time, will no doubt occur to the reader. Taking all things, therefore, into consideration, the bruising of Genesis 3:15 and of Romans 16:20 indicate an agonizing and protracted process, wearing in its effect, and associated with concealment, darkness and attack. To the fact that it is a protracted struggle, the record of the ages bears witness. That it was agonizing, the cry both of Gethsemane and of Calvary reveal:
- All Thy waves and Thy billows are gone over Me (Psa. 42:7).
- My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me? (Psa. 22:1).
- This is your hour, and the power of darkness (Luke 22:53).
- From the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour (Matt. 27:45).
- He shall see His seed ... He shall see of the travail of His soul, and shall be satisfied (Isa. 53:10,11).
He shall see His seed;
He shall see of the travail of His soul;
He shall be satisfied.
Come quickly Christ Jesus our Lord.
All God's Blessings,