by Rev Joel Yong
“As Moses lifted up the snake on a pole in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up. Then everyone who believes in him will have eternal life.” God loved the world this way: He gave his only Son so that everyone who believes in him will not die but will have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but to save the world. Those who believe in him won’t be condemned. But those who don’t believe are already condemned because they don’t believe in God’s only Son.
Jesus referred to a story in the Old Testament of when the people were writhing, poisoned and God instructed Moses to lift up a pole with a bronze snake crafted onto it. All who looked up and saw the snake were healed as a result.
He likened His impending death on the Cross to that Old Testament event – all who are without hope of being cured and saved, will be saved when they look to Jesus.
They ‘look to’ Jesus by believing in Him.
More than just beholding Him with their eyes, they behold Him in their hearts.
He saves and He cures us from our sinful condition and promises us new life- eternal life, in Him.
Those who do not turn to Him, are like those who are bitten by a poisonous snake in the Old Testament story, but refuse to accept that they are in need of an antidote and in need of healing. They will perish from the poison.
Then Jesus goes on to elaborate, that it’s not God’s intention to let us perish- rather He desires that all of us get healed and be given life rather than die.