“I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you” - Luke 10:19 (NIV).
Just as in desert Israel, there is an abundance of dangerous snakes in Africa. Lying low and wiggling itself along the ground a snake can easily be missed for its silhouette colors. Snakes are not known to move with fanfare; they roll sneakily somewhere, unseen, where once settled, they sharpen their fangs, before delving on the unsuspecting victim. A snake venom quickly attacks the central nervous system and unless immediately arrested can easily cause respiratory failure and subsequent death.
In the Bible we first become aware of a snake where it is depicted as “more crafty than any of the wild animals” (Genesis 3:1); ultimately, seducing Eve to cause the fall of Adam. The consequence of that was a curse which is well reflected even today. “ So the Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, “Cursed are you above all livestock and all wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life” (vv 14).
Now although mankind was sworn to eternal enmity with the serpent; they have survived to this day, where they remain as much of a danger. In life we often find two types of snakes: first, those sleazy creatures crawling on their bellies with devastating fangs. Then there are also people who carry the very traits of serpents. These penetrate among us unsuspectingly without much fanfare, take on the colors of their surrounding, and can easily be passed, only one day to attack and bring down their victims.
We should be alert to these snakes, for the danger they pose. There are certain ways one can protect themselves from snakes such as removal of wild bush in our surroundings and being ever on the lookout. As Christians we need also to remove those bushes that can give cover for snakes to penetrate among us. Snakes fear fire and long before used to be chased with smoke. Likewise, a life diminished of the fire of the Lord, opens itself to the guise and ultimate devastating attack of a snake.
However, one of the most beautiful things about being a Christ follower is that believers have been given power over snakes. There can be snakes constantly attacking us in multiple ways: from financial distress to physical challenges. For all the snakes around us let us walk with confidence knowing that authority has been left to us “to trample on snakes and scorpions” and we should fear no harm.
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, for any snakes arraigned against me I trample over them, through faith and in the power of the name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior!
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“Who dares despise the day of small things, since the seven eyes of the Lord that range throughout the earth will rejoice when they see the chosen capstone in the hand of Zerubbabel” ( Zechariah 4:10).
The public life of King David is well known. However, there is an early aspect of his life quite hidden though we can get glimpse of it. The first time we get to know David he is a stay home kid while his big brothers are on to bigger stuff, like fighting with King Saul. “Jesse’s three oldest sons had followed Saul to the war: The firstborn was Eliab; the second, Abinadab; and the third, Shammah. David was the youngest. The three oldest followed Saul, but David went back and forth from Saul to tend his father’s sheep at Bethlehem” ( I Samuel 27:13-14).
Left home alone perhaps it was a time for David to bond with the old man Jesse. Maybe he sometimes felt idle and ignored. But there was something maturing in his life for the life ahead. For in the meantime as he would later point to King Saul once an opportunity availed itself, God was ironing out his CV. When he offered to take on Goliath and Saul hesitated, he quickly shot back: “Your servant has been keeping his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, I went after it, struck it and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it. Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. The Lord who rescued me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will rescue me from the hand of this Philistine” (vv 35-37).
That’s the point. What had apparent been idle moments God was preparing David for the battles ahead? He would not only emerge out of the shadow as a great warrior but also a shepherd of his people ever relying on God.
Equally so, for all of us, there are moments that might appear idle and we feel frustrated as we see the days go by. Yet, in His gentle ways, God is preparing us for great days ahead.
Prayer today: Lord Father God, maker of heaven and earth, for those periods in life of apparent inactivity and maybe trials, help me appreciate them as the maturing me, for in due time and season all will bear fruit, this I pray in Jesus’ name!