The wicked have laid a snare for me: yet I erred not from thy precepts. – Psalm 119:110
In God’s diverse creation, there are many lessons and comparisons that can be applied to our lives. Whether it be the church as sheep, man’s life as grass, or Abraham’s generations as the sand upon the seashore, many creations of God reveal lessons found in His word. One stunning example is the similarity between the snare of the wicked and the snare of the Venus flytrap.
The Venus flytrap, an exotic-looking plant native to the Carolinas, is remarkable because of how it nourishes itself. While most plants get all their energy from soil, sun, and water, the Venus flytrap also relies on the flies that it captures and eats for additional nutrients. The flies are attracted to the fruity and flowery scent that the plant releases, and they fly in between the unusually-shaped leaves. As soon as the fly lands, it triggers tiny hairs on the plant and two leaves snap together, trapping the fly between them. The Venus flytrap digests the fly and opens up for more. This remarkable system created by God makes the Venus flytrap one of the few carnivorous plants in existence.
This brief biology lesson has a purpose. The Venus flytrap is a snare for insects, and the snare of the wicked is a trap for Christians. The wicked laid snares for the Old Testament saints as well as for saints today. Drug and alcohol abuse; partying; underage drinking, smoking, and vaping; gossiping, judging, and pride; pornography, homosexuality, and sex; bullying. The list could go on forever. There are countless snares, and different snares attract different people. You may be caught in one or multiple. As feeble little flies, we need to know where it is safe to land and how to get out of snares.
There is a safe place to land. Psalm 119:110 tells us God’s precepts kept him from the snare of the wicked. The Word of God is always a safe place to land and find rest. To avoid the snares of the wicked fly to God and He will preserve you.
Now, every Christian becomes trapped in snares, but there is a two-step process to get out. The first and most important step to escape is to realize that you are trapped. Sometimes, we like to stay trapped in our sin because it feels good, and we do not want to stop. However, for the child of God, the novelty of sin eventually wears off when God pricks our conscience and reminds us who we are. The longer a fly is in the trap, the weaker it becomes as the plant feeds off it. The faster we can get out of a trap, the better, because our spiritual lives get weaker the longer we live in sin. The second step is tricky, because it involves something that our sinful nature hates: asking God for help. Thankfully, God gives us the grace to accomplish this step. Do not fool yourself into thinking you can escape on your own. Cry out to God from the depths of your heart to save you. Only God is strong enough to break the snare of the wicked and free us. He then takes us in our weakened state to His Word. He rejuvenates us by His Spirit. And full of gratitude, we thank Him for His mercy.
We are still feeble little flies. We will still buzz off and get trapped again. But God is merciful and will save us when we fall. I pray that God will help His feeble flies to rely on Him and His precepts and preserve them from the snare of the wicked.
By Max Holstege