The Friday morning Bible Class will study Genesis 3 and the appearance of the shrewd serpent. It is one of the animals God fashioned and named by the man. It held the first theological discussion in history and convinced the woman and man to listen to him rather than God their creator. This disrupted all relationships world – wide. I read Exodus 4 this morning and there the serpent reappears when Moses throws down his shepherd’s staff and it turns into the snake. Scared him half to death. God tells him pick it up by the tail and it returns to a staff.
Later in the desert, when Israel complained about God, God sent a bunch of fiery (poisonous) serpents leading to several deaths. Upon confessing their sin, God told Moses to hang an effigy of a snake of a pole and when they looked on it, they would be healed. Thus, the cause of their trouble became their savior.
But in John 3, Jesus is compared to the serpent on the pole in Moses day. God loved the world so much that he was willing to allow his only Son to be lifted up on the cross like a serpent, so that whoever believes in him hanging there, limp and lifeless, won’t perish from the results of the serpent’s discussion in Eden, but will live and eternally at that.
Jesus, the seed of the woman designated to stomp on the serpent’s head, becomes the one stomped on. Four times John says, believe it and live. Grace amazing.