The healing of the Israelites who had been bitten by the fiery serpents was according to a divine plan. It was a means of healing that human wisdom would never have contrived. The victims were commanded to look upon a serpent of brass set on a pole.
These instructions for cure were contrary to man’s reason but brought instantaneous life and health to all who obeyed. God’s way of saving sinners never fails. Though it be absolutely contrary to the wisdom of this world, the Gospel of God alone brings healing to sin-sick souls.
Christ Himself shows us that in John chapter 3 this divine plan was a prefiguration of His own cross work. Had He not done so, we might have been puzzled over the type. Doubtless we would have thought a brazen serpent an unlikely type of Christ.
However, think carefully! The serpent was a reminder and emblem of the curse. Through “That old serpent,” Satan, man sinned and came under the curse, but deliverance comes through Christ’s “being made a curse for us” [Galatians 3:13]. Thus there was no flaw in the type. Moses was told specifically to make a serpent of brass, for that metal in Scripture is an emblem of judgment. In coming under the curse, Christ suffered the judgment of a holy God. Yet He bore that judgment unflinchingly, just as brass, the hardest of metals, endures the scorching flame.
Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness to show that the Gospel must not be obscured. Christ is to be plainly and clearly set forth. If the gospel be hid, “it is hid to them that are lost”
[II Corinthians 4:3]. Let us ensure that we never lose sight of Christ. He is the divinely appointed object of faith. The Lord says, “Look unto me, and be ye saved” [Isaiah 45:22]. May you look today, for there is life for a look at the crucified One. [Rev. John Greer]
THE KING JAMES BIBLE
It was on January 12, 1604, that King James I of England (James VI of Scotland) convened a conference in Hampton Court. The purpose was to create an official Bible in English. Earlier Bibles in English included Wycliffe (1380), Coverdale (1535), Matthew’s (1537), Great Bible (1539), Geneva (1560), and Bishop’s (1568).
James gathered scholars of the most godly minds and brilliant intellects to translate the Scriptures from the Hebrew (Old Testament) and Greek (New Testament). They published in 1611 the translation known as the King James Version, or the Authorized Version.
Their work, said Adam Nicholson [Toronto Star, 12 January 2004], was “an enormous and magnificent verbal building embracing the inhabitants of Britain – its orderliness and riches a kind of national shrine.”
Acceptance of the new translation was slow at first but by the end of the 1600s it was well accepted and soon became the English translation. In this modern age many have turned from its pages decrying it as old-fashioned with archaic wording. It does, however, have the stamp of God’s approval on it.
The Lord took a rather ungodly earthly king and used him for the greater glory of the heavenly King. The Free Presbyterian Church is happy to continue using this venerable Bible.
WHY WE USE THE KJV
In its public services, the Free Presbyterian Church, since its inception in 1951, has used the King James Version of the Bible. We do so for it is a faithful and accurate translation from reliable Greek and Hebrew manuscripts. The majesty of its language is unsurpassed. It has been said that there is “no other book worded with more beauty than our English Bible.”
We also use it for unity of worship with all people and children using the same reliable translation, thus avoiding the confusion in many churches where a multiplicity of versions is used. The fruit of its usage is noteworthy in countless revivals in New England, Ulster, Wales, and Lewis etc. It prospered the ministry of the Wesley’s, Whitefield, Edwards, and Spurgeon and countless more. God has singularly blessed its use more than the rest.
SAID ABOUT JESUS
He who is the Bread of Life began His ministry hungering. He who is the Water of Life ended His ministry thirsting.
Christ hungered as a man yet fed the hungry as God. He was weary, yet He is our rest. He paid tribute, yet he is the King. He was called a devil, but cast out demons. He prayed, yet he hears our prayers. He wept, and has dried our tears. He was led as a Lamb to the slaughter, yet He is the “Good Shepherd.” He gave His life, and by dying destroyed death.
The lowly carpenter of Nazareth is the mighty Architect of the Universe. [Author unknown]