John 1:14 "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must
the Son of man be lifted up:
15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal
“Serpent” or “Serpents”
Forty-nine times this word [in the singular or
in the plural] is found in the Bible and except here in this passage and
in Numbers chapter twenty-one, is connected to something very evil or
dangerous, and is in every case a reference to the Devil, to a literal
snake or is connected to the “wicked”.
1. The Devil: Serpent
The first reference is found in [Genesis 3:1] “Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he
said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree
of the garden?” and the last reference to the serpent is in [Revelation
20:2] “And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the
Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,”
2. The wicked: Serpent
Their lies are like the poison of a serpent. “The wicked are estranged
from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies.
Their poison is like the poison of a serpent: they are like the deaf
adder that stoppeth her ear.” [Psalm 58:3-4]
3. The Snake [literal]: Serpent “He that diggeth a pit shall fall into it; and whoso breaketh an hedge,
a serpent shall bite him.” [Eccl 10:8]
The most unlikely symbol to use to draw all men [who are sinners] to
being healed from sin is a symbol that mimics a serpent. Let’s read:
[Numbers 21:4-9].“And they journeyed from mount Hor by the way of the Red sea, to compass
the land of Edom: and the soul of the people was much discouraged
because of the way. And the people spake against God, and against Moses,
Wherefore have ye brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness?
for there is no bread, neither is there any water; and our soul loatheth
this light bread.
And the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and
they bit the people; and much people of Israel died. Therefore the
people came to Moses, and said, We have sinned, for we have spoken
against the Lord, and against thee; pray unto the Lord, that he take
away the serpents from us.
And Moses prayed for the people. And the Lord
said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and
it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh
upon it, shall live. And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon
a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when
he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived.” When “the people [Israel] spake against God, and against Moses”, they
sinned. The judgment of God was to send fiery serpents among the people
to bite the people … thus the people were poisoned and were waiting to
Once the people came to repentance: [We have sinned, for we have
spoken against the Lord, and against thee; pray unto the Lord, that he
take away the serpents from us.] then the man of God could pray for them
to God. Amen! The solution, or remedy, from God was this. “Make thee a
fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that
every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live.”
Look And Live
The remedy, therefore, for a serpent’s poisonous bite was accomplished
by the sinner [actively] looking on a brazen serpent on a pole. Life!
Again, the antidote for the serpent’s poisonous venom, which was to
bring certain death to the sinner, was to look upon the serpent of brass
on the pole. Have you gotten it?
Look and live! That’s bizarre! This to
me [in my limited understanding] was the most unlikely symbol to use to
draw all men, who are sinners, to life! Are not God’s ways strange?
my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith
the Lord.” [Isaiah 55:8] Yeah, the remedy for their sin is this brazen
symbol mimicking the very serpents whose bites were poisoning them to
Made Him To Be Sin
Now in [2 Corinthians 5:21] is the answer to the problem. [“For my
thoughts are not your thoughts …”] Here are God’s thoughts on the
matter. Are you ready? “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew
no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” Jesus
Christ became SIN for us on the cross of Calvary. [Matthew 27:46]
about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli,
lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken
The Father forsook the SON. Never had this happened before, and
never will happen again! God, The Father, could not look upon God, The
Son, because of the transformation of His Son, Jesus Christ, into
SIN … for us. In those hours on the cross before his
death, his transformation [made sin] was done to the one who knew no sin.
The Father could not
look upon him, [made him to be sin] yet if we sinners look upon Jesus
Christ WE WILL LIVE. LOOK AND LIVE! Amen! “Make thee a fiery serpent,
and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that
is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live.”
What happened in the
wilderness was to point to a future event. The great salvation God has
provided at the Cross [POLE] of Calvary [Hebrews chapter two].
hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made
the righteousness of God in him.”
The Warning of Idolatry!
Yet the symbol of salvation [the brazen serpent] became an idol
generations later and had to be destroyed by Hezekiah in [2 Kings 18:4].
“He removed the high places, and brake the images, and cut down the
groves, and brake in pieces the brasen serpent that Moses had made: for
unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it: and he
called it Nehushtan.” Idolatry inevitably comes in time.
The Cross today has become for the multitudes … an idol. The crosses
abound everywhere, in the churches, in the homes, in the dashboards of
our cars, and even in the necklaces around the necks; and are
worshipped, even as Israel worshipped [by burning incense to the brasen
What was once meant to be a symbol for their salvation in the
wilderness had become an idol. What is meant by the command to look and
live in the finished work of Jesus Christ on the Cross [True Salvation]
has degenerated to a cross which is only a religious idol [False
John 3:1 There was a man of
the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews:
John 3:2 The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi,
we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do
these miracles that
thou doest, except God be with him.
John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say
unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of
John 3:4 Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is
old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be
John 3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a
man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the
kingdom of God.
John 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is
born of the Spirit is spirit.
John 3:7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
John 3:8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the
sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it
goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.
John 3:9 Nicodemus answered and said unto him,
How can these things be?
John 3:10 Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of
Israel, and knowest not these things?
John 3:11 Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know,
and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness.
John 3:12 If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how
shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?
John 3:13 And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came
down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.
John 3:14 And as Moses lifted up the
serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
John 3:15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but
have eternal life.
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten
Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have
John 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the
world; but that the world through him might be saved.
John 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that
believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in
the name of the only
begotten Son of God.
John 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the
world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds
John 3:20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither
cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.
John 3:21 But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his
deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.
John 3:22 After these things came Jesus and his disciples into the
land of Judaea; and there he tarried with them, and baptized.
John 3:23 And John also was baptizing in Aenon near to Salim,
because there was much water there: and they came, and were
John 3:24 For John was not yet cast into prison.
John 3:25 Then there arose a question between some of John's
disciples and the Jews about purifying.
John 3:26 And they came unto John, and said unto him, Rabbi, he that
was with thee beyond Jordan, to whom thou barestwitness, behold, the
same baptizeth, and all men come to him.
John 3:27 John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except
it be given him from heaven.
John 3:28 Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the
Christ, but that I am sent before him.
John 3:29 He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend
of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly
because of the
bridegroom's voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled.
John 3:30 He must increase, but I must decrease.
John 3:31 He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the
earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from
heaven is above all.
John 3:32 And what he hath seen and heard, that he testifieth; and
no man receiveth his testimony.
John 3:33 He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal
that God is true.
John 3:34 For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for
God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him.
John 3:35 The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into
John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he
that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God
abideth on him.