MORNING MEDITATION

“Wgen I Am Lifted Up…!”

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“When I Am Lifted Up…!”(Jn.12:27-33).
Key verse: “But I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself.”
Jesus was surprised that Nicodemus, Israel’s teacher did not understand what it means to be born again by the Spirit. Wanting to make things clearer and simpler for Nicodemus he said inter-alia, “Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life”(Jn.3:14-15).
This statement of Jesus takes us back to when on the exodus journey the people grew impatient and spoke against God and against Moses. God sent venomous snakes which bit them and many of them died. They remorsefully came to Moses and said, “We sinned when we spoke against the LORD and against you. Pray that the LORD will take the snakes away from us.”
Moses prayed to the LORD and the LORD told him, “Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live.” Moses did as the LORD commanded. “Then when anyone was bitten by a snake and looked at the bronze snake, he lived”(Num.21:4-9).
Jesus’ words in our key verse is either ambiguous, ambivalent, polysemic and (double entendre?) in the sense that his being “lifted up” is either on the cross, but more so his being lifted up from the grave to the earth and from the earth to heaven.
When we carry our own crosses to follow the crucified Lord, we identify with his being lifted up on the cross like the bronze snake.
His ascension into heaven where he intercedes for us is his lifting up from the grave and earth, drawing all humanity on to himself.
The bronze snake of Moses cured those bitten by snakes symbolizing salvation. It is a foreshadowing of the crucifixion of Christ bringing salvation to humankind and also triumph over the serpent who caused Original sin in the garden of Eden.
Just as the Israelites came to Moses to acknowledge their sins and were spared, so too when we come to Jesus, the risen Lord with penitent and contrite hearts, he forgives us and draws us unto himself.
Johnson Oatman puts this in the sweetly compelling song,
“Lift Him Up:”
How to reach the masses, *men of ev’ry birth,
For an answer Jesus gave the key:
“And I, if I be lifted up from the earth,
Will draw all men unto Me.”

Refrain:
Lift Him up, (Lift the precious Savior up),
Lift Him up, (Lift the precious Savior up),
Still He speaks from eternity:
“And I, if I be lifted up from the earth,
Will draw all men unto Me.”

2 Oh! the world is hungry for the Living Bread,
Lift the Savior up for them to see;
Trust Him, and do not doubt the words that He said,
“I’ll draw all men unto Me.” [Refrain]

3 Don’t exalt the preacher, don’t exalt the pew,
Preach the Gospel simple, full and free;
Prove Him and you will find that promise is true,
“I’ll draw all men unto Me.” [Refrain]

4 Lift Him up by living as a Christian ought,
Let the world in you the Savior see;
Then men will gladly follow Him who once taught,
“I’ll draw all men unto Me.” [Refrain]

Yes friend; the Lord gave us the word, but it is our responsibility to do what draws all humankind unto him; including you and I.
Prayer: Glory be to you Father Almighty for lifting Jesus up and bringing us all unto him. Amen!
Have a blessed day! Peace be with you!
Rev Babila Fochang.

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