John 3:14-15 “The Serpent and the Savior”
John 3:14) 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 life.
Jesus is speaking to Nicodemus the words contained in these
verses. He is a ruler of the Jews. He is a Pharisee. Jesus referred to him as “the master of
Jesus has cause Nicodemus to admit that his intelligence is
inadequate. Nicodemus had to see that if
you put his brain on the edge of a razor blade it would look like a bee bee rolling down a four lane highway. Nicodemus has mental knowledge of the law but
not heart knowledge. Nicodemus has had
to admit that he does not understand the
Jesus will now tell Nicodemus what he needs to know. God requires faith and trust in the savior which He has provided in order for one to be saved. What better illustration than that of the brazen serpent in the wilderness.
The brazen serpent was certainly no type of Jesus Christ; but from our Lord’s words we may learn,
1. That as the serpent was lifted up on the pole in the wilderness, so Jesus Christ was lifted up on the cross. Yet the brazen serpent did not die. It did not have the sins of the people laid upon it. It did not suffer for the sins of the people in any way. Thus it falls short of being a true type of Christ.
2. That as the Israelites were to look at the brazen serpent to be saved from physical death, so sinners must look to Christ for salvation from spiritual death. The serpent had no power to heal but our Savior does.
3. That as God provided no other remedy than this looking for the wounded Israelites, so he has provided no other way of salvation than faith in the blood of his Son.
4. That as he who looked at the brazen serpent was cured and did live, so he that believeth on the Lord Jesus Christ shall not perish, but have eternal life.
5. That as neither the serpent, nor looking at it, but the invisible power of God healed the people, so neither the cross of Christ, nor his merely being crucified, but the pardon he has bought by his blood saves the souls of men.
6. The serpent represents sin and its curse and brass, being the color of fire, represents judgment on sin. Christ, who knew no sin, became sin on the cross suffering its judgment for you and me.
7. In each case those who are to be benefited can he aided in no other way. The bite of the serpent was deadly, and could be healed. Only by looking on the brass serpent could they be healed. Sin is deadly in its nature, and can be removed only by looking to the savior who died on the cross.
8. The mode of their being lifted up. The brass serpent was in the sight of the people. So Jesus was exalted from the earth raised on a tree or cross. Jesus said “and I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto Me.”
9. The design was similar. The one was to save the life, the other the soul; the one to save from temporal death, the other from eternal death.
10. The manner of the cure was similar. The people
W. A. Ogden wrote these words:
I’ve a message from the Lord, Hallelujah!
The message unto you I’ll give;
Tis recorded in His Word, Hallelujah!
It is only that you look and live.
I’ve a message full of love, Hallelujah!
A message, O my friend, for you.
Tis a message from above, Hallelujah!
Jesus said it and I know tis true.
I will tell you how I came, Hallelujah!
To Jesus when he made me whole.
Twas believing on His name, Hallelujah!
I trusted and He saved my soul.
Look and live, my brother, live.
Look to Jesus now and live.
Tis recorded in His word, Hallelujah!
It is only that you look and live.
Conclusion: The people of