When the Serpent Goes Hunting

Author: Joyce Yearsley

Well, we caught up with this guy at the Living Planet Aquarium. Being from South Florida, I have seen bigger snakes than this, not to mention, bigger cockroaches than the one a few enclosures down from the snake. But what caught my eye was the description alongside the window: “anacondas live in the murky, still swamp water, but they hunt on land”. They leave their abode, slither among the trees and vegetation to catch small mammals, then retreat with their prey back to the swamp.

I always pictured the serpent in Genesis, chapter three, as hanging out in its natural abode, the place where it was the most comfortable. But when Satan possessed the serpent, it went hunting. And it found its prey in the middle of the Garden. What was Eve doing there anyway, hanging around so close to the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil?? When I’m on a “diet”, I don’t go to the Cheesecake Factory. That would be too tempting and I know it.

But there was the serpent, slithering around the two most important trees in the Garden, the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, and the Tree of Life. How dare he? But he did dare…. And he still dares today. What kinds of places does the Devil hang out in today? Yes, we can well imagine, he is present in drug dens, in places of abuse, in Vegas of course, but when he leaves his natural abode, where does he go hunting? How about in our places of worship? In the workplace? Our homes?

What’s a redeemed saint to do? First, we need to understand that though the Devil is tricky, deceitful and prowling, we are not without the necessary tools to be victorious. We are well-armed. Ephesians 6:11 reminds us that we just need to put on the full armor of God, and then we can “stand against the wiles of the Devil” (KJV). Wait, he has wiles? Yep, but we can stand. What kind of wiles? 2 Corinthians 2:11 says we are not ignorant of his schemes. We aren’t?? No, friends, they are the same schemes he used all along. Trying to tell us that God has lied to us, that God is holding out on us, that God’s word is somehow wrong, or that we have somehow misunderstood it, therefore it doesn’t really mean what it seems to mean, etc. He slithers around our feet, telling us that we are without worth, without value in this value-driven world. He whispers that a little sin is OK, might even be good for us. These are the same lies he whispered to Eve. He has nothing new to throw at us.

The full armor of God (Ephesians 6:10-20) is not difficult to understand, nor is it challenging to put on. God has made it easy for us: Trust God and His word, believe in and partake of the sacrifice of Christ, share the gospel with others, fill your heart and mind with the things above, the things pertaining to Christ, pray, pray, pray.

The anaconda hunts its prey, squeezes the breath out of it, then swallows it whole, head first. This is not life. This is not victory. Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”

What is squeezing the very breath out of you today? Time to escape the Devil’s snares, his wiles and his deceit. Time to stop believing the lies, and send the snake slitting back to his abode.


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