In John 3:!4 Jesus says, "Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up..."
What the heck is Jesus talking about here?
He's referring to a passage from the book of Numbers. Specifically, Numbers 21:4-9. Here is that passage.
Then they set out from Mount Hor by way of the Red Sea to bypass the land of Edom, but the people became impatient because of the journey. 5 The people spoke against God and Moses: “Why have you led us up from Egypt to die in the wilderness? There is no bread or water, and we detest this wretched food!” 6 Then the Lord sent poisonous t snakes among the people, and they bit them so that many Israelites died.
7 The people then came to Moses and said, “We have sinned by speaking against the Lord and against you. Intercede with the Lord so that He will take the snakes away from us.” And Moses interceded for the people.
8 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Make a snake image and mount it on a pole. When anyone who is bitten looks at it, he will recover.” 9 So Moses made a bronze snake and mounted it on a pole. Whenever someone was bitten, and he looked at the bronze snake, he recovered.
The Holy Bible: Holman Christian standard version. (2009). (Nu 21:4–9). Nashville: Holman Bible Publishers.
Jesus was comparing Himself to the snake that Moses lifted up so that the Israelites might be saved. As I prepared for this morning's message, I was struck by how many parallels there were between the story in this passage and our own relationship with Jesus. Here is a chart I put together showing all those parallels. I hope you enjoy this as much as I enjoyed studying it and putting it together.
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