God is amazing in that He teaches us amazing lessons about life through everyday life experiences. We have something to learn from the parables of reaping and sowing. We have something to learn from having a stable foundation on which to build a building. We have something to learn from fishing.
Ask any fisherman what it takes to catch a fish. He’ll say he needs a couple of things. He needs bait. He needs a hook. You can’t have one without the other. If you have just the bait, the fish will snatch the worm and dip out. If you have just the hook on a string, no fish in its right mind will just hop on hook and say, “Beam me up!”
Ask the devil what he needs to snatch a man’s soul. He’ll say he needs a couple things. He needs bait. He needs a hook. You can’t have one without the other. The devil knows your flavor, just as a fisherman knows that fish like worms and bugs. A fisherman would be insane to put a bottle of lotion on a hook and cast it into the sea waiting for to catch a fish. The fish might look, and it will swim around the bottle looking for its worm. The devil is much the same way. He knows if you like tall, dark and handsome men. He knows if you like blond-haired, blue-eyed buxom babes. He wouldn’t send me an overweight, short man because I don’t go for those types of baits. But he knows Mistye likes tall men who are in shape. Those are the types he might send on a hook for Mistye.
I’m not saying that every opportunity, man, or woman who looks like your type is hell-sent, but you should beware. Because THE DEVIL KNOWS YOUR FLAVOR.
So back to the fish. The fish is hungry. The fish may even be desperate. But the fish is chilling in the pond looking for food. Then he spots the bait. It looks like a worm, it wiggles like a worm, and low and behold it even tastes like a worm! It must be a worm right? It’s like a hungry man walking through the desert after a couple of days desperate for food and water. And after walking for a while, he spots a nice table spread with an assortment of soul food, sweet tea, lemonade, and water. He runs for it! He doesn’t stop to ask himself, “Hey now, Bob. This is just too good to be true. There are no tables in the desert and all drinks would have evaporated.” But he’s just so desperate that he doesn’t even take the time to ask himself the probability of something this good coming to pass. I mean even the Israelites leaving Egypt to go the promised land had to eat bread and drink water sent from God Himself! But he’s so desperate that he goes for it. Just as a dumb fish for a worm on a hook.
Notice how the fish has to be hungry to go for the plastic worm. The Bible says in Proverbs 27:7 that “the full soul loatheth a honeycomb, but to the hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet.” Some people are so desperate for an experience that they go for anything. Some people are so bored with their God-devoid lives that they live every day looking for the next high. But God is a constant high. Get to know Him and you won’t have to go looking for the next woman to bed, the next blunt to hit, the next crime to commit. Many Christians are so full of God, that the bitter things remain bitter and they have no interest in them. I am not perfect, nor have I arrived to my spiritual apex, but I can say that most sins do not interest me in the least. My soul is full with God. But to people and fish with hungry souls, they are desperate for anything — even the artificial things of life.
But back to the fish. Had the fish looked closer and waited awhile, he’d have seen that there were literally “strings attached.” Yea, the worm looked real, but it had a long string that it was dangling from. The same with you people. If you had waited just one week, you’d have seen this person’s true character. You’d have seen that he was married. If you had waited at least six months before marrying so and so, you’d have seen he was crazy possessive and mad jealous. If you had waited 3 weeks, you’d have seen all those HIV medications in the medicine cabinet. But you were just so desperate and hungry for love and sex that you rushed into things. If it looks too good to true, make sure it good and true. Sure, God can bless you with some pretty amazing things that seem too good to be true, but so does the devil. For my readers who like the light skin, curly hair, light-colored eyes type, I know of friends who’ve been enraptured by that bait, and who been regretting it for years. Don’t get so caught up in your “pretty, little bait” to the point that you neglect reason.
Now some people catch fish just for the heck of it. They do it for their love of the game and throw the fish back out. But some people catch fish for to eat. The devil is like the latter. He doesn’t want you for a minute; he wants you for life and then for eternity. He wants to make your life a living hell and then he wants to take you to hell. Once he gets you, he will not let go unless you get Jesus involved. Jesus is the grace you need to get you off of that hook. Many people fell in love with their pretty, little bait and bit the bait. The fish will squirm and try to swim in the opposite direction, but it’s too late. If it was a hook you could get off of, then it wasn’t much of hook. The devil uses the best hooks and baits. He’ll bait you with “it’s just one hit” marijuana; and he’ll have you hooked on drugs for life. He’ll bait you with “just one sexy wo(man) and have you hooked on sex and stuck on Valtrex for life. He only wants you to take a little bite because just that bite might have you hooked for life.
Fortunately, we serve a God of grace and mercy. Grace can more simply be defined as God letting the good happen to you that you do/did not deserve to happen to you. Mercy can be defined as God NOT letting the BAD happen to you that you do/did deserve to happen to you. Some of my readers should have been “burnt” from that one night stand with their pretty, little bait. Some of my readers should have overdosed on that pretty, little bait. Some of my readers should have been incarcerated for stealing that pretty, little bait, but God showed them mercy. God is just so good to us, we don’t even understand how hooked we should have been by now. We really should appreciate Him. Look in the jails, and ask the imprisoned what their pretty, little bait was. They all have/had one. Ask the crack addict and the alcoholic. You’d never be an alcoholic if you never took a drink. But God can help, heal, and deliver you. Not everyone gets healed because plenty of people die from diseases, but it’s worth the try and more than likely, you will get great results depending on your faith. God will even give you grace for the results of your hook if you do not have the faith to get healed.
Many Christians say that we give the devil too much credit, but I say we don’t give him enough in some instances. The devil is wiser and more intelligent than we think. Arguably, very cold-blooded killer in the history of the world was led to do what he or she did by this fisherman named Satan. Perhaps every child rapist, every thief, and every liar was led to do what he or she did by the this fisherman named Satan. We need to be vigilant of this adversary. He is very cunning. Never forget that.
But also never forget that your flesh can take much of the blame. Just as Adam and Eve let their flesh’s desire — and not just the serpent’s temptation — for this mysterious fruit lead them to deliberately and knowingly disobey God, your flesh may lead you to do certain sins. Sure the devil will tempt you with bait, but notice how he only sends certain bait to certain people. He knows that not everyone likes sex, but he knows who does so he will tell them certain things to encourage them to listen to their flesh’s desire. The fish’s desire or appetite for worms led him to go for the worm. Horny wives and husbands have a lust for sex that leads them to commit adultery. Greedy people have a desire for money that leads them to embezzle or connive to get money the unethical way. Everyone is not a money-hungry person, so the devil knows he can’t tempt them with that, but many people (especially Americans) are very greedy for food, so he may tempt them to commit gluttony (overeating). Some people have a desire to always feel a high or an adrenaline rush. They may get a rush from doing extreme sports and doing daring, dangerous acts. So he may tempt them with drugs that cause a euphoric state. The bait changes for the individual. The devil is not omniscient, but he has ways of finding out what your desires are. Once he does, he’ll send your pretty, little bait package and wait for you to open it and act. It’s up to you to choose!
The fish has a choice when he’s in the water. He’s hungry. He likes worms. He eats worms. But he still has a choice. No one forces the fish to put it’s mouth on the worm. He does it 100% of his own accord. He can’t blame the school of fish he hangs out with. He can’t be mad at the fisherman and his son enjoying a nice Sunday on the lake. He can’t blame the plastic worm that fooled him. He can only blame himself once he gets his head chopped off, gets his scales skinned off, and gets fried in the frying pan.
You too have a choice when you’re in the world. You may be desperate for that swig of whiskey. You like to drink whiskey because of how it makes you feel. You drink whiskey all the time. But you still have a choice on whether or not you will drink it today or tomorrow or ever again. No one pulls your head back, forces your mouth open, and pours the bottle down your throat. No one forces you to get behind the wheel of the car to drive home after the party. You do it 100% of your own accord. You can’t blame the salesperson behind the counter at the Spirits & Wines store on the corner. You can’t be mad at the bottling company who sent it to the store. You can’t blame your friends who peer pressured you to chug. You can’t blame the bottle. You can’t be mad at the single mother of three who is driving down the same street you happen to be drunk-driving on. You can only blame yourself when you kill the mother after you drunkenly swerve in her lane, when you get charged with murder, and when you gets life in prison.
This scenario goes for sex, drugs, fighting, stealing, gluttony, greed, etc. You can’t blame anyone but yourself. You are not defenseless from your pretty, little baits. You are not a dumb fish. You have a very efficient brain. If you have enough sense to get through all of those steps, you have enough sense to say, “Yes, that is very tempting. Yes, I did it yesterday and everyday before then. Yes, I want to do it now. But, no, I will make a different choice today. Don’t let the devil get you hooked! Remember that God and Jesus loves you!