Are you caught in the devil’s snare? Do you know the best way to set a trap?

Cunning trappers and hunters have been catching animals for the longest of times by using the same method. The method: set a path that the intended catch will go down; entice the catch with some form of bait – something it will want; be sure to hide any clues that this is a trap; sit back out of site and quietly wait. This same method has been used since man began to hunt and there’s no need to change because it’s not like animals are truly capable of learning and adapting to the same trap.

Many do not realize this but the Devil operates in a like manner. The devil, like us (but even better), is also a very cunning hunter or trapper. Satan, however, does not hunt after animals, he hunts after the souls of mankind.

We are on a journey – running a marathon – and Satan is doing his best to entice you while you run the race of faith. We must be able to recognize all of the signs that point towards us walking into and getting caught in the devil’s snare before it is too late. I want to take time today to point out the bait that the devil uses to get you caught in his trap so that you will be able to recognize when you are walking into his snare.

Looking out for the signs

Cunning hunters and trappers will tell you that the best traps are the ones that are not clearly obvious. If the trap is obvious, then the animal will get suspicious and not fall for the trap. So the hunter must make everything look as natural as possible. They will hide and cover up anything that will alert their catch to something being off.

We are not like animals. Though the devil may hunt us like an animal, there is a great difference between us and the animal. Yes, we have a higher level of thinking, but what truly sets us apart is our foresight. We have the foresight (knowledge) and are aware that the devil sees us as his prey (1 Pet. 5:8). So, let us use this knowledge to our advantage instead of walking around in this world completely unaware as some do.

An example via the devil’s first hunt

I want to take a look at Satan’s first hunting of mankind to see what we can learn from that occasion (Gen. 3).

Satan’s first began his hunt of mankind in the Garden of Eden. The Lord created man and woman and placed them in the garden where they were to tend to the garden. God commanded Adam that they were not supposed to eat of the tree of knowledge (Gen. 2:16-17). Adam and Eve did what they were commanded for a period of time though they were unaware of their predator. The predator only seeks to strike its prey when it is completely unaware and vulnerable.

You see, there are many people in our world today who are somewhat like Adam and Eve though there is one great difference. Adam and Eve had no knowledge of Satan whereas many people today have knowledge of Satan but they simply do not believe he exists. Those that do not believe in his existence are the ones who are most vulnerable. (Would you expect a lion no to hunt you down if you stepped into its hunting grounds unaware?)

The enticing bait of the devil

The devil began to set a path for Eve, just as any good hunter would do. He begins to talk to Eve about God and His command (Gen. 3:1). Often times people get hung up on what kind of serpent the devil was or the type of fruit that Adam and Eve ate. Yet, we must recognize that the devil, right away, wanted to sow seeds of doubt about God and God’s authority.

The devil then began to lay down the enticing bait. (Good hunters will entice with a trail of crumbs of something that entices its catch to stay on the path.) The devil entices Eve with the crumbs of knowledge (Gen. 3:4-5). Adam and Eve had no real knowledge of anything other than God being the Creator and tending to the garden. So, I imagine, that this bait was rather enticing to Eve.

The devil even announces to Eve what’s inside of his trap. The devil says to Eve, “you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” In the devil’s snare was this idea of godhood. Satan cunningly offers this idea of being like God and knowing good and evil. (This was the big piece of cheese in the trap.) I imagine that Eve was thinking that she would be just like her Creator and have all of the ability and power of Him. Eve may have thought that she and Adam could be just as God.

How Adam and Eve got caught in the devil’s snare

Eve ate of the fruit and then Adam ate of the fruit (Gen. 3:6). Sadly, what followed was not omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent powers of God. Indeed their eyes were opened to good and bad (Gen. 3:7); it was when their eyes were opened that they recognized that the had gotten caught in the devil’s snare and it was too late for them and for mankind (in a manner of speaking). Mankind had fallen into sin, the very sin of the devil’s that he intends for us to continue to fall into.

Where some may hunt to have food to survive, the devil hunts with the sole intent to get mankind to fall to sin. So, we must pay attention to the signs that we may be walking into a snare of the devil’s. He set the path with Eve by getting her to question God and His command in her mind. Satan then enticed Eve with something that she wanted. When Eve took the bait she had gotten so far down the path that she believed she was doing the right thing – there was no turning back! She and Adam ended up caught in the devil’s snare – let us learn from this.

How does the devil set his traps today?

Somebody might say, “we don’t live in the same world today, so there are many more things the devil can use to entice us.” Yes, certain, that is definitely true – I agree. Another might ask, “what specifically should we look for the devil to entice us with?”

I want you to understand that the devil’s hunting methods have not changed over time. Like the catch of a human hunter, we ourselves have not adapted to how the devil hunts his prey. Even though mankind has the foresight knowledge of his presence, he has had no need to change his method because collectively we still foolishly fall for his trap! Every. Single. Time.

What does the devil do today? How do we, the genuine believer, end up getting caught in the devil’s snare?

The path of deception

The devil starts the path to his snare by first getting you to question God and God’s power (authority) just as he did to Eve. How often do you find yourself at times doubting whether the Lord has your best interest in mind? The devil wants us to believe that we know what is best for us because we are the ones living in this world. Every decision that we make, we have to live with the consequence of each decision. The devil wants you to believe that nobody knows you better than you know yourself – not even God!

How often have you had that thought, “Can’t nobody else tell me what’s best for me because only I know what I want!” This is a common statement that we make and it’s actually a very understandable thought. We would say that thought is a natural thought to have. Again, every good hunter wants its catch to feel that everything is natural and nothing is out of place.

Any time we begin to feel we know what is best for us over God, know that you are starting down a path of deception. Understand this, that is the devil whispering those thoughts in your ear. God is never going to tell you that you know more than Him! Beware of this sign!

The enticing bait

The devil got Eve to eat the trails of crumbs he had laid down on the path to his snare. For Eve, it was having the knowledge of a god. Satan has a way of playing with the things you may covet (want). Some folks covet power and so Satan will lay down crumbs of power for those people to feed off of. Some folks covet great wealth and so Satan will lay down those crumbs as well. Whatever you want, Satan has the bait for it and will drop out those crumbs so long as he sees you taking a nibble.

Again, we have to take great caution, especially when it comes to the bait. (As a fisherman lures in his catch by using bait, the devil will do the same to you.) What looks good may not be good for you. The field may be green but it might just be a field of green weeds. How can we tell whether it is bait or not?

To avoid such bait, we should pray to the Lord that He shows us His way just as Moses prayed (Ex. 33:13). Moses prayed, “show me now Your way, that I may know You and that I may find grace in Your sight.” The believer should definitely want to stay on the Lord’s path! God will reveal His path to those who truly have faith in Him.

In the devil’s snare

The one who is not prayerful is vulnerable to taking the bait. For those who simply do not believe the devil is real, they most definitely will eat the bait up. Someone might ask, “What is the big piece of cheese waiting in the devil’s snare?” The devil is still using the same piece of cheese that he used on Eve – godhood.

Satan wants us to believe that we don’t need God. The devil certainly knows that we need God but all he wants is your soul. Remember, the devil is a hunter nowadays and he even admits to it (Job 1:6-10). Satan wants mankind to eat the bait and fall into his snare of sin. The sin that Satan wants you to commit is to curse God.

When the devil gets someone to fully believe and accept that they do not need God, he has gotten them to commit the unpardonable sin. There is no way out of this trap. For those who end up getting caught in this trap, there is simply no turning back. Someone might say, “I thought God was a forgiving God and will forgive all sins.” The Lord is certainly a forgiving God, but He does not forgive every single sin that one commits.

God does not forgive the sin of blaspheming the Holy Spirit (Matt 12:31-32). To speak against the Holy Spirit is to speak against the presence of God that resides in all of His faithful. The Holy Spirit which came by way of the ascension of Christ. Christ ascended after He was risen from the grave by which entered from dying on a cross for our sins. Christ came from God the Father and is God.

Can I be saved from the devil’s trap?

Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is the final step in one biting down into the devil’s fruit and getting caught in his snare.

So, we must beware of the signs that point to one being taking down a path to being caught in the devil’s snare. Someone might ask, “I thought Jesus was supposed to be able to save me from the devil?” Jesus is more than capable of saving you from going down that path! I will even go a step further, Jesus is even capable of saving you when you ate some of the devil’s bait!

You see, all of us have sinned and have fallen short of the glory of God (Rom. 3:23). However, the genuine believer decided that they were done falling for the devil’s deceptions and taking his bait. We turned to Christ and Christ opened our eyes and revealed the truth to us and that truth has set us free! The devil may certainly still try you as a genuine believer but all you have to do is call on the name of Jesus!

If you now recognize that you are heading towards being caught in the devil’s snare, I want you to do a couple of things today. First, I want you to pray that God shows you His way so that you can find grace in His eyes. Secondly, I want you to start proclaiming the name of Jesus and watch what is revealed to you spiritually.

Listen to this sermon