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Posts Tagged ‘Scripture’

“The Surgeon General says it’s hazardous to breathe,” is a line from a Guns and Roses song that has always amused me.  And the headlines of recent days seem to indicate that those bad boys of the 90s may have been a little prophetic.

The looming threat of the swine flu has captured the world’s attention.  And the reaction of world government and health services seems more threatening and attention getting than H1N1.  I can perceive the need for wisdom and caution in dealing with this new strain of virus our bodies have not been prepared to fight against, but it is equally important that we are prepared to fight against the panic that wells up in our heart as we link up to our daily overdose of world news.  How do we walk in faith and courage in the face of swine flu? As I prayed with some friends over this situation today, a lady in our church reminded me of an event in the Old Testament that speaks to the circumstances we are witnessing.  In the book of Numbers chapter 21 verses 4 through 9, we read:

“Then they journeyed from Mount Hor by the Way of the Red Sea, to go around the land of Edom; and the soul of the people became very discouraged 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 our soul loathes this worthless bread.” So the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and many of the people of Israel died.

Therefore 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.

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent, and set it on a pole; and it shall be that everyone who is bitten, when he looks at it, shall live.” So Moses made a bronze serpent, and put it on a pole; and so it was, if a serpent had bitten anyone, when he looked at the bronze serpent, he lived.” [1]

192px-star_of_life2_svg Can you imagine the scenario?  What is it like when your journey through the desert in open toed sandals is suddenly interrupted by fiery serpents?  The thought of it makes me shiver, and I live in a town that hosts the World’s Largest Rattlesnake Round Up. But the marvel of the story is that, in the midst of the slithery chaos, God provides a way of healing.  He says, “Look up.”  Suspended between Heaven and Earth is a memorial of your pain and the means to your healing.  And so, with snakes at your feet, and desperate screams all around, the healing for the poison that runs through your body is found in looking up.  Undistracted, undeterred, unafraid, and up.

I am thankful for those who stand at the forefront of this battle, and I pray that wisdom and grace lead them in the fight against this vicious disease.  I also pray that those who observe with a sense of helplessness as events unfold will not give their hearts over to fear and panic, but will walk in faith and peace.  It is equally true today that in the middle of the chaos, God provides a way of healing.  He says, “Look up.”

In the book of John chapter 3 verses 14 through 15 Jesus declares:

“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.”[2]

Suspended between Heaven and Earth is a memorial of your pain and the means to your healing.  I invite you to look to Jesus for peace and healing today.


[1] The New King James Version. Nashville : Thomas Nelson, 1982

[2] The New King James Version. Nashville : Thomas Nelson, 1982

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