Archaeology

Nehushtan

Were there really fiery serpents sent by God to plague the offenders of Israel? Did a man named Moses receive a remedy from God which entailed a staff and a brazen serpent? Is this Biblical account reliable history?
Recommend To A Friend
Audio Options: MP3

Nehushtan

Article#: 1072

Psalms 31:19:

Oh how great is thy goodness, which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee; which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee before the sons of men!

The great goodness of God is extended to all who make a covenant by sacrifice.  In essence, it is the sacrifice of one’s life unto Christ.  The great goodness would include the following and more:

• The glorious beauty of transforming salvation.

• The Comforter—the very baptism of the Holy Ghost.

• The magnificence of the mystery of Godliness.

• The promises found in the Word of God in this life and eternal life.

• The benevolent instructions of God found in His Word.

• Absolute answers to all of life’s dilemmas.

• The stripes of Christ Jesus that heal all our diseases.

• The angel of the Lord that encamps about the righteous.

• The promise and ever-present reality that today is the best day of my life and that tomorrow will be better.

• The marvels and benefits of creation.

Have you yet to discover the very fountain of life?  Have you been born again, this time of the Spirit?  Click onto “Further With Jesus” for simple instructions for instant entry into the Kingdom of God.  You will discover the great goodness of God.  NOW FOR TODAY’S SUBJECT.

GOD SAID, Numbers 21:8-9:

And the LORD said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live.

And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived.

GOD SAID, II Kings 18:4:

He removed the high places, and brake the images, and cut down the groves, and brake in pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made: for unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it: and he called it Nehushtan.

MAN SAID: Bible accounts are not reliable, nor are they certified by secular history.  They are simply religious tales passed down from generation to generation.

Now THE RECORD.  In the entire history of man, no book has been so honored and revered, and no book so reviled and defamed, as the Holy Bible.  This book that claims to be the divine, inerrant truth has been a ready target for the ungodly.  For just over 6,000 years, Satan has harnessed carnaldom’s finest minds to challenge Holy Writ, only to fail time after miserable time.  Satan’s champions of this vapor continue to parade before the children of men to present their old, jaded ideas—which are the same old ideas offered up since the beginning, simply decked out in a new dress.  The world’s latest discoveries, its latest rebellion of the day, and its latest failed policy continually testify of God. 

This is article #385, archived on GodSaidManSaid in text and streaming audio, which proves the full veracity of the Word of God.  On this website, we employ a four-step proof text that verifies the record presented in the Word of God.  The issue of the brazen serpent falls under the proof category we call “Archaeology.”  In this category, archaeology, paleontology, and ancient history are employed to prove that the Bible’s historic record is true without exception, even to the most challenged and ridiculed accounts.  The proof is staggering.  Subjects such as a 6,000-year-old creation, the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve, the serpent, giants, Noah, confounding the languages at Babel, Abraham, Sodom and Gomorrah, fire-breathing dinosaurs (dragons), Jonah and the whale, and so much more are certified to be true.

The Word of God commands in I Thessalonians 5:18:

In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

“IN EVERY THING”!  What a magnificent idea.  This marvelous position is enjoyed when we walk before God in faith and obedience.  In Numbers 21:5-9, Israel is far, far from this principle.  It reads:

And the people spake against God, and against Moses, Wherefore have ye brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? for there is no bread, neither is there any water; and our soul loatheth this light bread.

And the LORD sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of Israel died.

Therefore the people came to Moses, and said, We have sinned, for we have spoken against the LORD, and against thee; pray unto the LORD, that he take away the serpents from us. And Moses prayed for the people.

And the LORD said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live.

And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived.

God hates complaining and unthankful spirits.  It behooves us as Christians to give them a wide berth.  Of the original Hebrew adults who escaped Egypt’s bondage, only two were permitted to enter the Promised Land, the famed land of milk and honey.

Because of Israel’s sin, God sent fiery serpents into their midst.  By God’s direction, and after Israel’s repentance and turning from sin, Moses is instructed to make a brazen serpent and place it at the top of a staff.  Those who were bitten would look upon the brazen serpent and be healed.  This is a prime example of the principle that the commandments and accounts of the Old Testament are a schoolmaster bringing us unto Christ—a very shadow of the Christ to come.   In the New Testament, Jesus said in John 3:14-15:

14  And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:

15  That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

Again in John 12:31-33 it reads:

31  Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.

32  And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.

33  This he said, signifying what death he should die.

The serpent, of course, represents sin.  Jesus hung on the cross on Golgotha’s hill, suspended between heaven and earth, even as the brazen serpent.  He carried on the cross the atonement for the sins of the world.  As we look upon that Christ of Calvary, we find atonement for our sins and the glorious, most magnificent new life that’s in Christ Jesus.  The brazen serpent foretold the cross.

Were there really fiery serpents sent by God to plague the offenders of Israel?  Did a man named Moses receive a remedy from God which entailed a staff and a brazen serpent?  Is this Biblical account reliable history?

The following paragraphs are from the book The Bible As History:

Surprisingly enough quite recently we have had archaeological confirmation of two occurrences in the Biblical account of the journey through the desert which nobody would have expected in this connection.  In spite of all the planning and systematic work, chance nevertheless has its part to play in archaeology and chance does not always pay any attention to what the scholars expect!  In this case it enabled the Israeli archaeologist Benno Rothenberg to discover a “serpent of brass” and a tabernacle in the copper mine area of Timna (Wadi Arabah). 

The “serpent of brass” is a serpent idol to which magical powers were attributed (Num. 21:9).  It is reported that there was a similar idol in the temple at Jerusalem which was not removed until it was broken in pieces by King Hiskia (Hezekiah) of Judah, who reigned around 700 B.C. (2 Kings 18:4).  The serpent idol naturally reminds us of the Sumerian serpent staff on a vase dedicated to the god of life Ningizidda.  It reminds us, too, of the Aesculapius’s staff of a later phase of Classical Antiquity as well as of the numerous serpents of Ancient Egypt.  Already at the beginning of this century a German scholar, H. Gressmann, had asserted that the “brazen serpent” in the Bible must have been taken over from the Midianites with whom the Israelites were in contact during the journey through the desert.

According to the Bible, the Midianites were descended from Abraham’s wife Keturah (Gen. 25:2-6) and Reuel (or Jethro), a priest of the Midianites, who was the father-in-law, adviser and co-celebrant “before the Lord” (Ex. 2:16, 3:1, 18:1) of Moses.  The Israelites are supposed to owe the strange cult of the brazen serpent to Reuel.  It is not without a touch of dramatic effect that we note that it was at an archaeological site showing signs of Midianite occupation that Benno Rothenberg’s found an idol in the form of a brazen serpent five inches in length and partly decorated with gold.  As though this sensational confirmation of an important part of the Biblical accounts of the journey through the desert, which have been the object of so much discussion, were not enough, this small bronze serpent was found in the Holy of Holies of a tabernacle!  [End of quote]

Moses?  The brazen serpent?  Archaeology says yes.

GOD SAID, Numbers 21:8-9:

And the LORD said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live.

And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived.

GOD SAID, II Kings 18:4:

He removed the high places, and brake the images, and cut down the groves, and brake in pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made: for unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it: and he called it Nehushtan.

MAN SAID: Bible accounts are not reliable, nor are they certified by secular history.  They are simply religious tales passed down from generation to generation.

Now you have THE RECORD.

 

 

 

References:

Authorized King James Version

Keller, W., The Bible As History, Barnes & Noble Books, p149

Visits: 9895