7. a. The Lord told Moses to—
Make a replica of a poisonous snake.
b. In light of the second commandment in Exodus 20:4—
You are not to make any idol or image of other gods. In fact, you are not to make an image of anything in the heavens above, on the earth below, or in the waters beneath.
It seems God’s instruction to Moses would cause him to break that commandment.
Also, the serpent is a common image in ancient Egyptian mythological art. Satan appeared as a serpent, too.
In this case, it seems the bronze snake is simply an image of the real thing causing death. Teaching the people to look at the image in faith, seems like an act of worship. I’ve read several commentaries and articles about this topic, but I still don’t understand its purpose.
8. a. John 3:14-16 I don’t think Jesus is comparing Himself to the poisonous snake—just His coming crucifixion and resurrection.
Just as those bitten by snakes could overcome the deadly effects of the venom, those who bear the effects of sin can overcome and receive everlasting life by believing in Jesus’ sacrifice.
b. In a word, I’d describe my belief in the Son of Man, Jesus Christ as victorious!
Then I heard a loud voice shouting across the heavens,
“It has come at last—
salvation and power
and the Kingdom of our God,
and the authority of his Christ.
For the accuser of our brothers and sisters
has been thrown down to earth—
the one who accuses them
before our God day and night.
And they have defeated him by the blood of the Lamb
and by their testimony.
And they did not love their lives so much
that they were afraid to die. Revelation 12:10-11 NLT
Painting by Fyodor Bruni Public Domain