Numbers 21.7-9 explains, the people 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. So Moses prayed for the people. The Lord said to Moses, Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live. So Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole. Then when anyone was bitten by a snake and looked at the bronze snake, they lived.
The Lord did not remove the snakes as the people requested, rather He provided a means for healing should the people be bitten by the snakes. The means for healing required faith, faith that God would act upon their behalf should calamity strike in the form of a snake bite. This is how we are to live.
Calamity is not taken from us who know the Lord. Like the pagan, we must all live in a fallen world. The brokenness of the world, the brokenness of humanity and the workings of the evil one, affect the Christian and the non-Christian. The non-Christian is left to their own devices to deal with these things. Their coping is by false gods who are of no value, drugs and alcohol, pleasures, depression, suicide.
The Christian looks up, he looks to God, Who provides Jesus, the hope of the world. Jesus is the presence of God in a world of suffering. Jesus endured suffering knowing His future of eternity was certain. Therefore Jesus helped all who were suffering by offering peace with God and hope for eternity through His deeds of service and love.
The Christian too will not have the ‘snakes’ of their life removed but they are to always look up at the cross where we see Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our salvation. The Christian is to now live among the people and the ‘snakes’ encouraging and demonstrating faith in God by looking to the cross where God has most clearly revealed Himself and His good will toward us.
God’s healing, His salvation is for all people but only those people who look to the cross by faith trusting Him for the future while serving others now in a world that is full of troubles will come to know His presence now and His eternal healing in the future.