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Critics have endeavoured to represent this passage as a combination of occurrences and sayings from the life of the prophet written down by an unknown hand .
The credibility of the contents is not necessarily affected by this theory, since prophetic traditions may be recorded by any writer without losing their credibility.
Since our indefinite article serves this purpose, we may translate: "I will put enmities between you and a woman".
Hence the prophecy promises a woman, Our Blessed Lady, who will be the enemy of the serpent to a marked degree; besides, the same woman will be victorious over the Devil, at least through her offspring.
But even Duhm considers the theory as an apparent attempt on the part of the critics to find out what the readers are willing to bear patiently; he believes it is a real misfortune for criticism itself that it has found a mere compilation in a passage which so graphically describes the birth-hour of faith.
According to 2 Kings 16:1-4, and 2 Chronicles 27:1-8, Achaz, who began his reign 736 B.
The second prophecy referring to Mary is found in Isaias 7:1-17.The first prophecy referring to Mary is found in the very opening chapters of the Book of Genesis (): "I will put enmities between thee and the woman, and thy seed and her seed; she shall crush thy head, and thou shalt lie in wait for her heel." This rendering appears to differ in two respects from the original Hebrew text: (1) First, the Hebrew text employs the same verb for the two renderings "she shall crush" and "thou shalt lie in wait"; the Septuagint renders the verb both times by employed in the Septuagint by the Latin "servare", to guard; St.Jerome  maintains that the Hebrew verb has the meaning of "crushing" or "bruising" rather than of "lying in wait", "guarding".But seed not only may denote a particular person, but has such a meaning usually, if the context allows it. Paul (Galatians ) gives this explanation of the word "seed" as it occurs in the patriarchal promises: "To Abraham were the promises made and to his seed.
He saith not, and to his seeds, as of many; but as of one, and to his seed, which is Christ".The strength of the Christian tradition as to Mary's share in this victory may be inferred from the retention of "she" in St.