False doctrine can turn on you quickly.
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It was common knowledge while growing up that we must not surprise my mother with snakes. Not just actual snakes, but also toy snakes and pictures of snakes. So I apologize to her, and anyone else this may startle, when this photo pops up on your computer today.
My daughter took this picture while on a school field trip. I don’t know what kind of snake it is, but I think it’s kind of pretty, and it has an inquisitive look on its face. I can say this because it’s just a picture. I could probably have said the same thing if I was with her, because the snake was behind glass. However, if I ran into this same creature without the barrier between us, I don’t think I’d examine it too closely to determine whether or not it’s safe.
Why do so snakes have such a bad reputation? Obviously there’s the Biblical account of the serpent in the garden of Eden, but is this really why so many people fear them? I know I don’t expect any snake to open its mouth and try to tempt me to sin.
We have a harmless corn snake at our house whom I’ve had the temporary privilege of feeding. I’ve petted her in the past and seen my children hold her. However, now that I’ve watched her catch a mouse, I’m admittedly afraid. She goes from not moving at all to striking at a blinding rate. It’s the sudden speed and incredible strength of snakes that makes me respect their space.
“But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ”.
2 Corinthians 11:3 New International Version
Just as it is intelligent to have a cautious respect for snakes, we need to remain wary of the teaching we receive about Christ. What may seem innocent at first, can quickly turn into something dangerous. Pray, remain in God’s Word, and He will help you discern between truth and dangerous lies.
Photo copyright Torie Hecker
Text copyright Richelle Hecker