Saturday, August 19, 2006

Snakes On A Disciple

O.K. I admit it, I'm simply cashing in on the cultural fascination with this movie and it's title to draw unsusssspecting net surfers to the gosssspel. So ssssue me.
You want snake stories? The Bible has plenty:
From online encyclopedia Wikipedia:
In Christianity the snake makes its infamous appearance in the first book (Genesis) of the Bible when a snake appears before the first couple Adam and Eve and tempts them with the forbidden fruit. It is also seen in Exodus when Moses, as a sign of God's power, turns his stick into a snake to devour the pharaoh's snake. Later Moses made Nehushtan, a bronze snake on a pole that when looked at cured the people of bites from the snakes that plagued them in the desert. Jesus instucted his disciples to be be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.

My favorite snake story from the Bible is the account of Paul in Acts 28. He and his crew have been shipwrecked amongst a tribe of savages. While making a fire, a snake crawls out from the heat and bites Paul. The islanders think the snake is divine retribution for Paul's badness, but Paul simply shakes off the serpent, unharmed. This site offers some commentary on the scene, and you can read the actual story right from the Bible here.
Of course, there is also controversy on whether one is to prove their faith through the handling of snakes. I agree with this writer, who states that God would certainly be capable of protecting a believer from a snake's venom, but that we are not to go around testing God like this. The upshot of the matter is that God will protect His followers eternally, even if they come to harm in this life.
Actually, snakes will become harmless even before eternity. During the 1000-year millenium, Isaiah 11:8 tells us that:

"The infant will play near the hole of the cobra, and the young child put his hand into the viper's nest."

Celebrate the Savior That Saves Us From the Serpent and Subdues All Snakes!

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