2 Kings 18:4 – “…and he broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made; for to those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it…”
When the Israelites were travelling through the desert on their way to the Promised Land, a great plague was stopped when Moses, following God’s instruction, built an image of a bronze serpent on a stick. Everyone who looked at the serpent was saved from the plague. Symbolically it stands as a picture of sin, crucified on the cross of Christ. As we look to Christ the ‘plague’ of sin is stopped in our lives.
But hundreds of years later, the bronze serpent was still around and had become an idol. The children of Israel were burning incense to it, and presumably looking to it for help in their time of need, instead of looking to the Lord.
It just goes to show that something which is a deliverance in one generation can be an idol in the next generation. God is constant, but not static. He’s always moving on to new things, and if we try to hang on to things that He’s moved on from, we’ll find ourselves in a place of death.