Preached at Holy Cross Evangelical Lutheran Church in Rocklin, California on The Fourth Sunday in Lent, March 14, 2021 by Pastor Todd Peperkorn.
Sermon Text: John 3:14-21
Sermon Theme: “Lifted Up”
Old Testament: Numbers 21:4–9
Epistle” Ephesians 2:1–10
Holy Gospel: John 3:14–21
Jesus Is Lifted Up on the Cross so that We May Look to Him and Live
The people sinned by speaking “against God and against Moses,” and the Lord called them to repentance by sending fiery serpents, which “bit the people, so that many people of Israel died” (Num. 21:4–6). When the people confessed their sin, the Lord provided a means of rescue from death. He instructed Moses to “make a fiery serpent and set it on a pole,” so that “if a serpent bit anyone, he would look at the bronze serpent and live” (Num. 21:8–9). Thus, God sent His Son into the world, in the likeness of our sin and death, and lifted Him up on the pole of the cross, that whoever looks to Him in faith “may have eternal life” (John 3:14–16). By His cross, “the light has come into the world,” not for condemnation, but “that the world might be saved through him” (John 3:17–19). While we “were dead in the trespasses and sins” in which we once lived (Eph. 2:1), God loved us, calling us to repentance and raising us up with Christ to live “with him in the heavenly places” (Eph. 2:4–6).