I think we are all aware, especially if you have read the Bible at least to some degree, that the information, we receive about Jesus Christ, and his sacrifice on the cross, was brought forth, in the New Testament.
But I have not been taught this, nor seen, the distinction from the old testament cross, and the new testament cross. Maybe you have. But I feel led to share it, because we do not hear of it. In teachings etc. Or at least I had not. So to see this distinction, brought a lot of perspective to me. A lot of understanding. It increased my faith, it showed me, more than ever, how great the sacrifice of Christ is. That he would go to the cross, and take my sins, for me, as the sacrifice. I am more so, more grateful, as I learn this. Perhaps you will be as well.
In Numbers Chapter 21, of the old testament, we see, that the people had sinned against God. And the Lord sent serpents among the people, and they bit the people. And many of the people died. Numbers 21:8. So the people went to Moses, and said, we have sinned. And Moses prayed to God. God instructed him, to take a serpent, and to put it on a pole. And that every one that will look at it, that has been bitten, when he looks upon that pole shall live.
I had read this before, and had not really made the distinction as to it being a cross, but a pole by the scripture. And by the words that are used. It does not say a cross, it says a pole. So I never related it to being a cross. But recently, I saw a documentary on this, and the pole that was erected, was actually a cross. Which makes a lot of sense. Because Moses, had horizontally, placed the snake on the cross part of the pole, to fasten the serpent. Hence, thereby making the pole a cross. The story itself, was odd to me. When I had read this in the past. To be totally honest. I thought it was odd, that God would instruct Moses, to do this. To look at a serpent. For them to receive their healings. But as soon as he did do that, those, who did look at it were healed. They were saved.
But as I saw this documentary, I realized something, and really learned something, that I will try and bring to perspective here. In relating this, it showed this version. Which, I will call the Old Testament cross. (pole) But then, it went to the times of Jesus. And it shows Nicodemus, in John Chapter 3, talking to Jesus. Nicodemus, I will refer to, is Old Testament. He is an old testament type of guy, who has a really hard time understanding Jesus, and his ways. Jesus tells him, Unless a man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God. Nicodemus thinks this is odd? How can a person be born again? He cannot go into his mothers womb. And Christ explains unless a person is born of water, and the Holy spirit, he cannot enter the Kingdom of God. Which explains baptism, and receiving the Holy spirit, when we believe…..
But then in John 3:14 two scriptures above the famous…For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believes in him, should not perish, but have everlasting life. Is a scripture, I have honestly missed in relating to the old testament cross, because it explains, there was an old testament cross.
There in this scripture Jesus brings it into perspective. In John 3:14, Jesus says….And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up.
Now, let me put this into my perspective, because this is important that we understand this, and I have always understood, that Christ was the sacrifice, the lamb of God, and that yes, God loves us so much, that Christ, was sent to die for our sins. I understand this. But what I learned, and maybe you can see this as well. By the example from the Old testament cross. That God had instructed Moses to put the serpent on the pole, and for them to look at it. Instruction. It was a curse, that he erected on the pole. I could not understand the choice to put a serpent on that pole. A curse, a viper? But I do now. You see, when Christ, was put on a pole for us, he became the curse. For us. To live. The word says, Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us. For it is written, cursed is everyone that hangs on a tree. Galatains 3:13. By his sacrifice of becoming the curse. He gives us life.
Not only for now, but for eternity. He took all of our sins, all of the payment that we would receive, had he not died for us. We would have died without, any redemption. Sending us straight to hell. Death. Like those, people that had died, as the serpents bit them. But even then, God made a way. And he instructed them to look to the cross. You see, God does not change. Even then, sin, was punished. And it is today as well. The only difference today, we can give our sins to Jesus, and he saves us, because he paid the penalty for our sins. He became the curse, so we would not have to. How great his love is for us. All we have to do is believe. Repent, and seek him. And change our ways. Becoming obedient. We have to look to the cross.
Do you see that he fulfilled the scriptures from the Old Testament as as he told Nicodemus? For Christ was lifted up. On that cross, high above, we can see what he did for each one of us.
The same holds true now. All we have to do is look to the cross of Christ. Instruction. The Bible is our guideline, our instruction. The old and the new testament. Christ told us he did come to abolish the law, but to fulfill it. And he does.
As we believe….. There is life in that. I know this sounds odd, but maybe you can see it too. When Moses erected that pole, from the first testament, I can see Christ saying to God the Father, in heaven…. “You know, I need to go down there, and save those people from death. I can become the sacrifice, I will take their curse upon me, and become the sacrifice. I will give my life for them, to spare them from the curse. And God said yes, for I so love the world”.….That means he loves you, he loves me.
Now it is up to us to accept this gift, and to be born again. Are you like Nicodemus, an old Testament kind of person? Legalistic perhaps. Having a hard time to believe? It does not make sense? You don’t see this spiritually, you see it intellectually. Christianity has always seemed odd to you. Or do you see, what Christ did, for he truly did come to fulfill the scripture, that the covenant he made with God, is for our behalf. If we just look to the cross, we can live. We can be spared the consequences of our sins. Death, separation from God for eternity. Spared from hell.
I will be honest, thats where faith comes in to believe. You may not see all the picture right away. You might not see all the facts, concerning Christ. Even here I had not. You may not know all the truths from the Bible. But I am so glad I made the choice to believe, in faith. When I accepted Christ as my Lord and savior. Because as I walk with Christ, he shows me the truth. Little by little, precept upon precept, I have learned. This is just one part of the puzzle that he put together for me, but it just reminded me, I just had to look at the cross. God has been so very good to me. Especially from the point of my believing, and receiving my Salvation. God has shown me, his love, his power, he has done so much on my behalf. But it took my believing, without the evidence. For whatever we need, whatever ails us, or cannot get through, Christ’s sacrifice, is the answer. He can make a way. He did make a way for us. For truly as the word says, he is the way, the truth and the life. We just have to look to the cross. Will you?
Blessings, and just my thoughts. In his love, I hope you see this. I hope you are looking to the cross.
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