Fang of the Serpent: the Ultimate Solution to Sin

Numbers 21 – Deuteronomy 3

Have you ever asked yourself, “why do so many bad things happen to me”? Why don’t you ask, “why do so many good things happen to me”? We are surrounded by blessings. The greatest of these is Jesus taking the curse of sin upon Himself to free us from it’s bondage.


It’s very common for people to ask why bad things happen to them.  

But have you ever wondered why we don’t ask the question the other way around: Why don’t we ask, “why do so many good things happen to us?

Think back in your own life experience, do you remember some morning getting out of bed and thinking to yourself, “why am I so blessed?”

Most of the time, we take the blessings for granted, don’t we?   

The many ways we are protected, spared, shown love and mercy from our Father in heaven… this goes completely outside of our field of focus— and it isn’t until a single blessing is removed, and a single obstacle is allowed in our                    day, one thing that goes wrong— and we begin asking “Why is my life falling apart?”   


          When all along we should’ve been asking “Why is my life still together?

Every car ride we take without an accident, flat tire, car trouble, or speeding                    ticket — we are being blessed! 

The fact that we have family who love us, children who laugh with us,          people who socialize with us — this should all be a source of gratitude in our           heart — with wonder we should look up to heaven and say, “Oh Lord, why do you love me like you do?

          Consider the human heart:

                   Your heart beats over 100,00 times per day

                  It pumps about 1.5 gallons of blood every minute, that’s over 2000 gal/day.

                   We have 60,000 miles of blood vessels in our body!


                   Cousin Danny— Teaching SS Class— Pacemaker

          What about our eyes?

                    The human eye can distinguish over a million different colors

                    It can change its focus up to 50 times per second

                   The camera equivalent of the human eye would be 576 megapixels

         The miracle of your muscles?  The ear.  The nervous system.  The brain.

We are surrounded by blessings— Protected from a thousand different curses each day, many of which we aren’t even aware exist.  

There are millions of reasons to live each day expressing wonder and thanksgiving and gratitude to our wonderful God!

But we are challenged by our carnal nature:  By nature we magnify the problems, and forget about the blessings — it takes conscious effort and daily consistency to begin cultivating an attitude of praise!

Read:  Numbers 21:4-5

1)  God’s Unseen Hand Of Protection

The children of Israel were taken care of in very special ways:   

          They had the cloud above to protect them from the sun.   

          They had the pillar of fire to give them warmth at night.   

          They had the bread from heaven delivered to them every morning.   

          They had a visible reminder of God’s presence.   

          They had His leading, His protection and His continual watch 24/7—


          And most of the time they took God’s blessings for granted.

Spiritual Point:

When we indulge the spirit of discontent, we will be disposed to find fault even                    with our blessings.  (vs 5)

We should take time to thank God for His unseen and unknown acts of                            protection and blessings in our lives.   

          We don’t have to see the miracle, to believe and be thankful.  

                    A spirit of thankfulness will create a protective barrier for sin

Read:  Numbers 21:6



          Where did these serpents come from?  (vs 6)

           Did God send the serpents into the camp?

“who led you through that great and terrible wilderness, in which were fiery serpents and scorpions and thirsty land where there was no water; who brought water for you our to the flinty rock; who fed you in the wilderness with manna…” 

                                                                                                         (Deut. 8:15, 16b)

         The fiery serpents were there all the time.  (EXPLAIN)  

God needed to reveal to His people their true condition, and two essential truths:

2)  The Wages Of Sin & All Have Sinned

Too often our suffering is viewed only as a punishment from God, rather than the result of us leaving God and seeking our own way.  

          “By continually dwelling on the dark side of their experiences, they separated themselves farther and farther from God.”   (PP 428)

When we grumble, murmur and complain… we chip away at our faith.   

          Complaining about our situation, denies the promises of God:

         “My grace is sufficient”  (2 Cor. 12:19)

         “For we know that in every situation, God is working for our good…”  

                                                                                                                   (Rom. 8:28)

 Grumbling is the offspring of doubt, and doubt is the opposite of faith

The effect of sin, is that it separates us from God…. the source of life.   

When we sin, we essentially tell God, “I do not need or want your blessings any             more”, “I’m content to live life under my own governing”— and God allows us to follow our path deeper and deeper removing— His hand of protection and                      allowing us to experience the wages of sin.  

          The full wage of sin is death, which is an earned outcome.  

Punishment sometimes conjures the idea of an angry, unreasonable, and vengeful God — but an earned outcome is God giving us what we have chosen.

The serpents in the wilderness were called “fiery serpents” due to their terrible effects produced by their sting, it causing violent inflammation and speedy death.  

          This was a perfect lesson on the effects of sin.  

Secondly, the serpents didn’t just affect a few of the people, but ALL the people.  

          Which highlights the Bible truth that  

                    ALL have been stung by the fiery bite of sin                                   

                    ALL have felt the fang of the serpent and  

                   ALL are in need of a remedy

Read:  Numbers 21:7


                   Did the Israelites believe their sin would have such consequences?  

                   Did they blame God?  (vs 7)

                    Who was affected by the fang of the serpent?

Spiritual Lesson: Sin brings about death and the sin of some can spread to many

It is dangerous to play with sin, we do not realize how deep and dark that path goes.

Read:  Numbers 21:8-9

3) The Remedy — Jesus Becomes Sin For Us

The Story:  People are dying in the camp and coming to Moses begging for a cure.  

Moses comes to the Lord asking for a remedy or a miracle— and the answer of God is to make a serpent with the same fangs and the same scales and the same slithery form of the fiery snake!  And then put the image of the culprit on a  pole and go into the camp lifting it high for everyone to see— and cry out for all                            to hear, “Look and live!”

The Serpent is a symbol of Satan

          Revelation 12 talks about the great, fiery red dragon— that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan.  (vs 3, 9)

          The serpent is also a symbol of sin and that is opposed to God

So, why would a serpent, a symbol of sin, be used as a remedy?  This was the curse?  How can the curse, be the cure???

Description of Sin: 

          When we sin our name changes and so does our identity.  

          When we murder we become a Murderer,  

          When we steal we become a Thief,  

          When we lust the Bible says we become an Adulterer  

          And with the change in identity comes Shame, and Guilt, and Condemnation.

The Remedy of God was for Jesus to take sin, and the curse of sin, upon Himself —  

Jesus name and identity changes when this happens in the garden of Gethsemane, He becomes the curse for us.  

When the act of Murder is transferred from Hitlers name to Jesus name, Jesus also takes the title Murderer— and with it He bears the shame, the guilt, and the              condemnation.  

He does this for the whole world— for all sins of the 8 Billion people today…and all the people that have ever lived.   

This is what crushed Him and made Him sweat blood, and caused him to ask for the cup to be removed—  


But the Father answered his prayer by sending an angel to strengthen him, and Jesus drank the cup down… to the dregs, that’s the sediment at the bottom!  He took it for us!

If Jesus took the identity of sin upon himself, do you need to carry that identity any longer?  


If Jesus took your sin of lying, and the identity of a liar, then he also bears the shame, the guilt, and the condemnation for that — Do you need to bear that identity any longer?

The amazing truth is this:

                             “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree.’)”  (Gal. 3:13)

                   “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”  (2 Cor. 5:21)

                   “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so much

the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.”  (John 3:14, 15)

LOOK & LIVE — Look means more than a casual glance, it means the look of faith to believe that when Jesus bore your sin He bore it all.

Spiritual Lesson: God calls us to believe that Jesus has taken our sin and our shame, our guilt and our condemnation, upon Himself fully — He has nailed it to the cross, that we should bear it no more —  

We NOW have a NEW identity, do you know what it is?

“As Many as received Him, to them He gave the right to be called children of God”John 1:12