And More

Like the majority of the world population,
snakes are not my thing. I don’t suffer
specifically from ophidiophobia (the irrational
fear of snakes—and yes, I had to look up that
one). I am just not a fan. One of my family
members, however, is an enthusiast. In fact, a
fun time for him and his friends in high school
was to stomp through the swamp in the dead
of night and catch snakes. Their purpose was
not to kill them, but rather to catch and
identify them. That’s all well and good. But I’ll
stick with identifying birds. It seems a much
safer hobby than hobnobbing with reptiles.
“Now the serpent was more crafty than
any other beast of the field that the LORD
God had made” (Gen. 3:1). This is our first
encounter in Scripture with a snake (or a
snake-like creature). It is described as crafty
(also: cunning; wise and understanding;
clever; smart). The serpent convinces Adam
and Eve that the prodigious plenty provided
by God is actually not enough. The serpent
implies that God is holding back from
humanity. God has deceived them by being
dishonest about the true nature of “the tree of
the knowledge of good and evil.” According to
the serpent (the actual deceiver), God is only
protecting his own interests. God is being
selfish and domineering. There is no good
reason, the serpent might say, that humans
should not take part in the delicious,
succulent fruit of the “forbidden” tree.

And so it goes from that day to this. In
opposition to the benevolent God, the
deceiver continues his malevolent work in
our world. The serpent is crafty and
ancient. He can be convincing. Yet from
the beginning, our munificent God has
given us all we need, and more.

Share This