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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

You've got... snakes?

So you're walking along complaining about the lack of what you call "good food" and lack of water.  You are sick of the food you've been eating that God supplied.  In mid-conversation your friend screams and drops to the ground yelling in pain.  You see a snake slithering back in the the tall grass and you watch your friend die.  That sounds wonderful doesn't it?  This is obviously a made up story expanding on the above scripture.  

So they ask Moses to intercede for them to the Lord.  They want the serpents removed.  What we see here is a classic case of repentance.  The only problem is they don't understand, like many people today, that the guilt of a sin can and will be removed upon repentance and obedience, but the consequences remain.  A person addicted to drugs may repent and obey the Gospel.  They are no doubt forgiven for that sin  and the guilt is removed, but health issues will remain due to the consequences of drug abuse!  This applies here as well.  They were guilty of speaking out against the Lord and Moses.  They were complaining about God's provision and felt like they had more in the world than they did under God's care.  The consequence of that sin venomous snakes and death.  Sin in our lives gets us the same thing today!  Rom 6:23  

The Lord provided a way for all His people to be saved.  He has Moses put a serpent on a standard.  The word standard literally means ensign; signal; sign.  It comes from the root word that means to be high.  So God basically says make a snake on a high sign.  If the people look upon it they will be saved from the snakes around them.  Notice the snake bites, or the consequence of the sin, didn't go away.  Provision of healing is provided and that is all that is needed the rest is on the shoulders of the people.  

He has done the same for us today.  We all have sinned. Rom 3:23  Satan tries to tell us God is not providing for us as well as he should.  We could have a lot more in the world, with our own rules, and making our own way.  Hey, it worked with Eve too!  God provided a way for us to be saved as well, in Jesus.  He has been lifted up as sign too.  Jn 3:14,15  God is still providing salvation for those who choose to obey.  I'm not saying that only certain people are chosen by God for salvation.  The Bible doesn't say that. Jn 3:16; 1Ti 2:3,4; 2Pe 3:9  I'm simply :saying only certain people will choose God's salvation. Mt 7:13,14 

What we see in this text is man's enemy, that old serpent (Rev 12:9), deceiving people and causing sin and death.  A unique remedy for the sin and death is provided by God upon man's obedience to His commands.  I mean a serpent lifted up, really?  I will be saved if I just focus on that?  YES!  A man dies on a cross, really?  Being dunked in a pool of water washes away sins, really?  YES!  That lifting up of the serpent foretold of Christ being lifted up on Calvary.  Just like the bronze serpent lifted up was made in the likeness of the other serpents, Jesus, who was lifted up on Calvary, was made like us. Heb 2:14,15 

God has provided a unique way for man to be saved today and it all starts by focusing on the man that was lifted up on that cross, Jesus Christ. The snakes are still biting but we must focus on Christ and we will be healed and saved from those snakes.  Today, I ask you what snakes are biting you and trying to keep you from focusing on  God's saving power?  Focus on Jesus today, put Him and His Word first in your life.  


Hear The Word-  Rom 10:17; Acts 4:4

We Must Believe or Have Faith-  Heb 11:6; Acts 16:31

We Must Repent-  Lk 13:3; Acts 17:30

We Must Confess Christ Before Others-  Mt 10:32; Acts 8:37

We Must Be Immersed Into Christ (Baptized)-  1Pe 3:21; Mk 16:16; Acts 2:38  

We Must Remain Faithful-  Rev 2:10; Acts 14:22     



  1. 2 Peter 3:9 KJV

    The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

    That verse actually supports Gods election. If you take it as meaning God is waiting for all men to repent, then He can never return. But if you take it as God is waiting for all the elect to be saved, because some have not yet been born. Then God will not return until all the elect are saved. Do all men come to repentance. No. Shall God wait to give all men a chance to repent. If He did then He can never return. The only way that verse makes any sense, is if God is waiting, for all those chosen to be saved. It fits in with Romans 9 and John 6. In John 3:16. Whomsoever, more lickley refers to both Jews and Gentiles.

    John 10:16 KJV

    And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.

    But to day that God does not choose those who will be saved, because the Bible does not teach that, is not true.

    Read Romans 9 and John 6.

    1. I don't see 2Pe 3:9 saying the Lord is waiting for "all" men to repent and when they do then He will return . I see it saying that people think since Christ hasn't returned yet He is slacking on His promise. The apostle replies the Lord is not slacking, but the fact that He hasn't returned is because he desires all to repent. (1Ti 2:4) It doesn't support election in my eyes at all. When I combine 1JN 2:2 "and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world." and HEB 2:9 "But we do see Him who was made for a little while lower than the angels, namely, Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, so that by the grace of God He might taste death for everyone. " Both NASB I see thise saying that are welcome, but not all will submit. I do believe that God has an elect, His Church, but I don't believe He excludes anyone. That thought of exclusion is hard to harmonize with the above verses.

      Concerning. Jn 10:16, we must keep that in context. That is said to His disciples and is a parable about Jesus being the Good Shepherd. When this is said by Jesus the only sheep in the fold are the Jews. When He says "other sheep" he is referencing the gentiles being included in God's family. That is why He then says "one fold, and one shepherd." He is telling them that the time will come when Gentiles will be apart of His fold and not the Jews alone. That is fulfilled in Acts 10.

      Rom 9 is addressing the thought that all Jews were God's children. Paul denounces that thought in verse 6. He gives examples of that in the following verses. Then in verse 18 we read that God has mercy on who He desires. The previous verse mentions Pharaoh. Therefore, I will use him and the King of Ninveh as a contrasted example. One was spared and one was not. How does God decide which one was which? Does he put faces on a dart board and whoever gets hit with the dart is spared? NO! One of these men repented and the other did not. How we respond to God's Word depends on whether we are saved or not. Paul is saying that God reserves the right to have mercy on who he chooses. God chooses the ones who properly respond to His Word. That is what this chapter is dealing with not that God is arrogant and only chooses a few to be saved. God is love. (1Jn 4:8) Mt 7:13,14 says that few will "find" the narrow road. It doesn't few will "be permitted on" the narrow road! We all have the choice to seek that narrow road.

      You will have to be more specific on John 6 my friend. There are 71 verses in that chapter. I would love to discuss the specific ones that you have questions or concerns about. Have a red letter day!

      God loves you and so do I,