This week I want to start off with some verses from God’s word, “From Mount Hor they set out by the way to the Red Sea, to go around the land of Edom. And the people became impatient on the way. And the people spoke against God and against Moses, “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no food and no water, and we loathe this worthless food.” Then the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people, so that many people of Israel died. And the people came to Moses and said, “We have sinned, for we have spoken against the Lord and against you. Pray to the Lord, that he take away the serpents from us.” So Moses prayed for the people. And the Lord said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent and set it on a pole, and everyone who is bitten, when he sees it, shall live.” So Moses made a bronze serpent and set it on a pole. And if a serpent bit anyone, he would look at the bronze serpent and live.” Numbers 21:4-9
This passage was written thousands of years before Jesus was even born, but you can see how this story parallels with the story of Jesus on the cross. We can see that the Israelites are in the wilderness and are dying of snake bites and in our world today people are dying not of snake bites, but of a lot of other things, diseases, accidents, and cancers. We live in a fallen and dying world, but God being rich in mercy gave us a way to come to Him, all we have to do is look at the cross in faith and He will save us from the second death, which is to be separated from God forever. They are so similar, we look in faith at the cross and are saved from the second death, whereas the Israelites looked to the bronze snake on the pole and were saved from the first death. They looked on the snake and were saved from God’s wrath for their sins, so we looked to Jesus on that cross, though He had no sin and was perfect, He took all God’s wrath for our sin on Himself, so that we could live forever with Him.
The most amazing thing is that we are not just able to live with Him forever, but that we are also sons and daughters of God. We have been adopted by the blood of Jesus into His family (2 Corinthians 6:18). We can not be loved anymore or less by God than He loves you at this very moment. So many times I think Christians are trying to work because they think God will give them more favor or they are trying to justify their worth to God. Working to try to earn something from God or to justify our worth to Him will just make us miserable. We do not work because we are trying to find self worth or justify our worth to God. There is nothing we can do to make ourselves worthy in the eyes of God, the only thing that makes us worthy is the blood of Jesus. We should not try to find worth in anything or anyone, but Jesus. Serving is not something we do for God’s attention, but we serve because we see the world’s needs through His eyes and are called by Him. The people in the Bible who did the most good by serving were not the ones who were looking for self worth or identity, but the ones who knew who they were in God and their works were just the fruit of that knowledge. Remember work is not what makes fruit, but fruit comes from our relationship with God.
So this week, know that we live in a fallen and dying world, but that God sent His only begotten son that whoever believes in Him will not die but have eternal life (John 3:16). God can not love us as Christians any more or less then He does right now. If you would like to come to know Jesus, all you have to do is to admit that you are a sinner, believe that He died on the cross for your sins, and confess Him as Lord of your life. Also this week, remember that work will not produce fruit, but will only be a result of your relationship with God.