ADVENT IN THE OLD TESTAMENT—DAY 7
Numbers 21:7-9 The people came to Moses and said, “We sinned when we spoke against the LORD and against you. Now pray to the LORD to take these snakes away.” So Moses prayed for the people. Then the LORD told Moses to make a metal snake and put it on a pole, so that anyone who was bitten could look at it and be healed. So Moses made a bronze snake and put it on a pole. Anyone who had been bitten would look at the bronze snake and be healed.
Does anyone else think that it is strange that the first depiction of the Crucifixion of our Lord Jesus should be a snake on a pole? But the identification of the bronze snake with Jesus is inevitable—both were lifted up for our healing, if we would but look to Him. Perhaps not so strange. The Bible says that “He who had no sin became sin for us.” It also says that in the cross Jesus made a public display of the powers that be in the world and canceled our debt to them by nailing it to the cross. In this way our natural wickedness is raised from the dust toward heaven. So the next time you see a snake, think not only of Satan or of your own sinful nature, think of how God ultimately honored snakes by making them a symbol of the healing Jesus is working in you.
Dear God, you do indeed love all your creation, even snakes like me. Thank you for Jesus who became like me to lift me up to be like you. Grant that when my life, my eyes, and my experience are stuck in the dust that I may turn my eyes and see Jesus lifted up to draw all people to Himself and to You. In His name and for your delight I pray. Amen.