“The law of the wise is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.”
Let’s talk about “snares” for a moment. What is a snare? A snare is a trap meant to catch and hold prey. A snare is something set by a hunter. The following description is posted on the Encyclopedia Brittanica’s animal advocacy page. (Link)
Killing animals with snares and traps is an appallingly cruel way of slaughter. The caught animals do not die instantly… it often takes days for the victims to slowly die of dehydration, starvation or strangulation. Although some animals manage to free themselves of these death traps, they are then crippled and unable to fend for themselves, again left to die slowly.
Any animal can get caught in these snares, including the young, the healthy and the pregnant — snares kill indiscriminately!
A snare is something that is set for a purpose; it is intentional. Snares of old were usually things like nooses made of rope, or pits dug and covered over to look like solid ground. Snares don’t happen on their own, but are set in order to catch a specific animal.
Snares are not very effective, however, when there are no lures attached. In order for a snare to catch something, that “something” must see a reason to justify stepping into the trap. Therefore, a snare is usually baited with something the prey would really like to have, like food.
But not all snares are baited with food. Some snares are baited with other desirous items like money, fame, sex, and shiny gadgets.
On the other hand, the most dangerous snares are those which are placed in an already determined path. They need no bait. All they need is a traveler not paying attention.
Laws and Teaching
Today’s proverbs says that the teaching of the wise is a regular source of life, helping us avoid inevitable traps meant to take our lives. What are some examples?
The Teaching: “Let your wife be a fountain of blessing for you. Rejoice in the wife of your youth.” – Proverbs 5:18 NLT
The Lure: “Life is short. Have an affair.” – Ashley Madison (.com)
The Snare: Betrayal. Broken marriage and home. Guilt and regret.
The Teaching: “Likewise the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark.” – James 3:5 NIV
The Lure: Debates on Facebook; Twitter Rants.
The Snare: Rash words you can never take back. Hurt feelings. Ruined friendships.
The Teaching: “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth…[but]store up for yourselves treasures in heaven. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” – Matthew 6:19-21 NIV
The Lure: Early retirement; Investment schemes; Real estate; Travel; etc.
The Snare: A life wasted on material gain. Unfunded ministries. No treasure in heaven.
The Teaching: “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” – Galatians 6:7 KJV
The Lure: “Stealth mode” on your computer.
The Snare: Shame. Addiction. Warped sense of love. Lying. Wanting more.
Make no mistake about it, there is a hunter on the prowl (1 Peter 5:8). He is all about setting traps. The lures he uses are getting more sophisticated every day.
And this hunter doesn’t care who he kills, or how much they suffer. For that matter, the more they suffer, the better.
But the “law of the wise” will keep you from falling into those traps. The “snares of death” are easily spotted and avoided when we obey the teaching of God’s Word.
“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.” – Matthew 6:13 KJV