“Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him” (John 3:14-15 NIV).
This is the first in a series of devotions that takes their lessons from scriptures that are less known and sometimes overlooked because they are embedded within or immediately following a well-known bible story or biblical text. John 3:1-21 records the well-known story of the conversation of Jesus with Nicodemus, a Pharisee and member of the Jewish ruling council. This story contains what are probably two of the most recognizable and often quoted verses in the New Testament: John 3:7 – “You must be born again” and John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son….”
Although the illustrious verses 3:7 and 3:16 usually draw most of the expository attention in the Nicodemus story, the more obscure verses 14 and 15 are actually the focus of this discussion. In these verses Jesus refers to an event in Numbers 21 in the Old Testament and uses it as a lead-in to His dramatic pronouncement in John 3:16.Continue reading