In front of Beth's school there was a flagpole with a big, brass eagle on top. When Beth's mother dropped her off at school one day, Beth asked, "Mother, why is there an eagle on top of the flagpole?"
"I'll tell you a quick story about that, Dear One," said Beth's mother.
And this is the story she told:
One day, while the Israelites were walking near the Red Sea, they started to get upset. They said nasty things about God and Moses. "Why did you bring us out of Egypt to die in the forest?" they said. "There's no bread, there's no water, and we hate flat bread."
So God sent flaming snakes to bite the people, and lots of the people died.
Because of this, the people came to Moses and said, "We did something bad. We said bad things about God and you. Please ask God to take away the flaming snakes."
So Moses prayed for the people and God said to him, "Make a flaming snake out of brass and put it on a pole. After that, everyone who is bitten can look at the snake on the pole and get better."
Moses did as God had instructed, and nobody who looked at the brass snake died.
Beth thought about this for a moment. "So that's for us to look at in case we get bitten by eagles?" asked Beth.
"That's right, Dear One," said her mother. "Now run along to class."
Then Beth smiled, hugged her mother, and jumped out of the car. All her questions had been answered.
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