You may remember last Sundays Old Testament lesson was from Numbers. It was the story of the Israelites who had just been freed from Egypt. They were out in the wilderness on the way to the Promised Land. But they were complaining because they didnt feel like they were being taken care of. That happened a lot. Sometimes Moses would go to God on behalf of the people and God would provide something extra. But this time, God decided tough love was the best course. So, he sent poisonous snakes into the camp. When the snakes bit the people, they got very ill and would soon die. So, God had Moses place a bronze image of the snake on a pole and hold it up. When the people looked at the snake on a pole, they would be healed and live.

I was listening to a sermon one of my colleagues preached on the same passage and he had such wisdom, I had to share it with you. He pointed out something easy to miss in this story would be the snakes themselves. The snakes werent evil. They were just doing what snakes do. When they feel threatened, they bite. End of story. So, when the people got sick, God could have just killed off  the snakes and that would have been the end of the problem. But he didnt. Instead, God provided a solution to the peoples problem.

It is the same with us. Because we live in a sinful world there are literally snakes all around us. Things that hurt us, make us upset, and cause pain and suffering. But when that happens, God doesnt take those things away. Instead, God provides a solution to the problemJesus Christ! Just as the serpent raised on the pole was life for the Israelites. Jesus on the cross is the symbol of life for us! Christ suffered death on the cross so that we might have eternal life. Lift high the cross!

See you Sunday!