Chapter-a-Day Numbers 21

The Star of Life, medical symbol used on some ...
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God said to Moses, “Make a snake and put it on a flagpole: Whoever is bitten and looks at it will live.” Numbers 21:8 (MSG)

I was in the car on a business trip yesterday. The client was talking about a young man in their office who was in trouble. In the conversation my client said, “I think the boy protests too much.” It struck me that the client turned a well worn Shakespearean line, but I wondered if she had any idea where the line came from. I’m guessing she could not tell you where the line came from.

In a similar manner, I’ve been amazed once more as we’ve journied through the ancient books of Leviticus and Numbers how many ways God’s Message still influences our everyday lives and culture in ways we don’t realize. In today’s chapter, God tells Moses to make a little art project, sculpting a snake and attaching it to a staff. Those who looked at it were healed.

How many times have we seen the medical symbol of a snake wrapped around a staff on the sign of a doctor’s office or an ambulance? Did have any idea we were looking at a symbol that came directly from Biblical history?

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4 thoughts on “Chapter-a-Day Numbers 21”

  1. When I was in Bahrain I had a jeweler make me a tie clip of the serpent on the staff. In john 3:15 Jesus references the incident. Once I was asked the meanings of the clip, I am hoping more will ask so I can share the message.

  2. The people came to Moses and said, “We sinned when we spoke out against God and you. Pray to God; ask him to take these snakes from us.”

    I am always amazed by reading Scripture how the human condition hasn’t really changed over thousands of years. In the OT, as well as today, people complain against God and forget about God until there is a crisis. Then, they realize they can’t control all of life’s circumstances, and cry out to God. I think of natural disasters today. It seems to be the only time that the airwaves are filled with God-talk and prayer and needing a “savior”. We need to be aware that during times of success and profit, God desires to hear from us too.

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