Snake on a Pole

A snake on a pole. Such an emblem is associated with the medical community and healing arts, whose origins are from Greek mythology. But, this emblem has earlier origins in the Bible, and has far more significant meaning and implications.

During the forty year wilderness wanderings of the people of Israel, they spoke out against Yahweh and Moses. Poisonous snakes were unleashed as punishment, resulting in the death of many. After repenting, Yahweh gave these instructions: "Make a fiery serpent, and set it on a standard; and it shall come about, that everyone who is bitten, when he looks at it, he will live.” (Numbers 21.8)

This remarkable action and symbol finds greater significance in the sacrifice of Christ: "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life." (John 3.14-15)

The serpent, the deceiver instrumental in humanity's ruin in the Garden of Eden, is mortally wounded through the One crucified on a pole. All who look to Him in believing faith can be saved.

Many place great faith in the medical community, symbolized by a snake on a pole. I, and many others, place greater faith in the One lifted up to be crucified on a Roman cross.

May we look up to Him today, and experience the hope and healing only He can bring.

©Steve Taylor, 2016 --Used by permission

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