WHAT IS YOUR BRONZE SNAKE?
"Do not make for yourselves images of anything in heaven or on earth or in the water under the earth" (Exodus 20:4 TEV).
"[Hezekiah] destroyed the pagan places of worship, broke the stone pillars, and cut down the images of the goddess Asherah. He also broke in pieces the bronze snake that Moses had made, which was called Nehushtan. Up to that time the people of Israel had burned incense in its honor" (2 Kings 18:4 TEV).
On their way to the Promised Land in the wilderness, the Israelites grew impatient and spoke against God and their leader, Moses. So, the Lord sent venomous snakes that bit them, and many of them died. After the people repented, God directed Moses to make a bronze snake and lift it up, that anyone who looks at it will live. Moses did as God directed and as many as the people of Israel that looked at the image survived the poison of the deadly snakes (see Numbers 21:4-9). It is interesting to note that the people of Israel kept this bronze snake for centuries burning incense to it. In other words, what God used as a type to save the Israelites from a calamity was turned by them to a god (named Nehushtan) that they were worshiping! It took hundreds of years before a king in person King Hezekiah destroyed this image.
Nowadays, people have many seemingly bronze snakes that they are worshipping knowingly or unknowingly. Even some Christians denominations and churches are not left out in this error. They have turned many things that God used one time or the other to accomplish His purposes in their lives to norms and practices. Such things have become traditions that are competing with (or even taking the place of) the word of God! No matter how good such traditions may be, they have to be discarded.
What are your seemingly "bronze snakes"? They may not necessarily be physical images. In what honour are you still "burning incense"? Check your life, beliefs and practices. Anything that does not conform to the sound teachings of the word of God should be discarded no matter how popular it may be.
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).