-- The Old Testament book of Numbers tells the chilling tale about
snakebite. The Israelites, led by Moses, were making their way
across that wilderness from the Nile to the Jordan River. They
encountered a vicious enemy, the carpet viper -- not just one,
but apparently thousands of them.
These snakes are rather small, never more than 24 inches, and
very hard to see. They blend into the sand, sometimes just their
The late Karl Schmid of the Chicago Museum, who himself died
of a snakebite, regarded the carpet viper as one of the most dangerous
of all snakes known. They do not travel alone. In northwest India,
nearly a quarter of a million of them were killed in one small
G. S. Cansdale has written that no other snake is known to exist
in such numbers. The venom of the carpet viper is more deadly,
gram for gram, than any other viper. These reptiles are easily
provoked and are bad tempered.
A virtual army of them had nestled in the sand near Edom. Here
came nearly three-million Israelis, trekking across the sand.
And the snakes struck at the passing ankles and sandaled feet.
Moses put it so simply, “They bit the people, and many
died.” In Scripture, Satan is often referred to as the serpent.
One thing is sure, his bite is brutal.
But, thank God, there is an antivenin, and that is the blood
of Jesus Christ. Did I say “an” antivenin? No, no,
there is ONE antivenin.
All our pulling ourselves up by the bootstraps will never stop
the deadly process of sin’s bites. Jesus is still your answer,
good friend. Count on it!
Used with permission by author, Dan Betzer. Previously published on ByLine OnLine, copyright © 2005 Media Ministries of the Assemblies of God.
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