David Jury - "Snares and Traps" - Didsbury, AB - 2004

Hymn 323 - All who are under 25, please stand while we sing this hymn.
 
Seeing all you young folk singing just about undid me. I counted 8 young workers among you who are under 25, what a privilege, as some among them are not 20 yet and that is a great tribute to our God who has called souls to labour. As I have sat in convention, I look to the right and the left of the platform and see workers, many of the staff I do not know, but I see great potential for different occupations in life. They would have no trouble finding a mate and I see the sacrifice. This kingdom is built on sacrifice, is based on sacrifice. If the sacrifice were to go out, it would not be acceptable any longer.  We are thankful to the God of heaven who has called them and is able to keep them. Workers are an endangered species in the world today, this ministry.

Back in Manitoba, we have 4 less fields that we had in 1983. We do not know all that has happened. Now there is more responsibility on young lives, for there are not enough hours in the day to meet the need, so we do the little we can do and our Father sees the need. I want to talk to the young folk for we were all young once. Now I am beyond middle age, 42 years old, but there was a day when I sat in gospel meetings, sitting on the front row, sitting listening like my future depended on it and it did. When our young ones are kept in this present evil world, it is a tribute to our God. I would like to speak to you in this meeting about traps and snares and we as workers are not immured to it, we are as susceptible as you. I do not want to scare anyone, but there are traps for us as workers as well as for you folk, for the workers are an endangered species, we are no exception.

Today I would like to take you down the trap line, Satan has a trap line. A trap is just a mechanical device that is holding an animal, and a snare is a device like a noose but the result is the same. We want to go quickly and look at Satan’s trap line. He caught Adam and Eve in his trap line. They doubted the word of God, they questioned it and the end result is that they were caught. Daniel had a trap line set for him but he was too wise to get caught in that.  With the help of God, he was able to jump the trap. Some boys at home have a trap line for animals. They set it for squirrels but sometimes the squirrels spring the trap and they are not caught in it. With the help of God we can spring the trap, no reason to get caught in it. When we trust our own skill and judgement we get caught. Satan is a kingdom above us and he knows the business, he will catch us. Achan thought that he could hide what he had taken. He could not use them, he could not display them, he was embarrassed about them, but this meant death, he was caught in the trap line. Satan did not get Adam and Eve because they repented, but he got Achan. Haman built a trap for Mordecai. He used his own material to build the gallows and he was caught and hanged on it himself. Whenever we build a trap for someone else, anytime we plan to build a trap to catch our brother or sister, we are the ones who finish up getting caught in it. My friends, do not build a trap for our brethren.

I was a licensed trapper and learned some different things about traps. Timber wolves, large and small, are so easy to catch. First thing is to get some bait and let it sit for  a few days. Other animals will come and frequent it but they will not touch it. Sometimes it takes two weeks and the wolves get interested, they have seen that the other animals have not touched it. They see the eagles fly down and feed, and they see the timber wolves getting nearer the bait. Then they set the snare about 200 yards back from the bait and the reason is that all have their guard up close to the bait. This man caught all in one clutch, the father and mother, all the children.  He felt guilty catching the whole family of timber wolves. This enemy we have that puts up a trap line for us has no heart, none whatsoever, does not matter whether we are middle age or older. He does not care for our soul, and he is working against God.

During preps, I set a trap line to catch some skunks. I caught 7 or 8. One morning, I went to see the trap and saw a mother and baby skunk caught. I thought that a baby skunk would be to young to be attracted to the bait, but it went with its mother. There was another skunk that was under the sisters' cabin. We wanted to kill that one, we had no sympathy. We became ruthless as we knew the stink that this skunk would create under the cabin so we caught it. It was a great victory. What about our enemy? He is also ruthless and has no sympathy. We could have let the skunk go but the enemy will never let us go. You mothers and fathers need to be so careful because of the little ones, you may not get trapped but what about the little ones? They are very dear and important in our hearts, for we see the work God can do in homes that have the environment for Him to work.

The enemy uses various snares, he uses the best tool for the situation. Sometimes the snare is hidden, set so you do not see it. Sometimes timber wolves are smart. They’ll go along and smell and go around the trail, get off the trail and pull back and forth. A trapper will remove every human scent from a snare so that the animals will not smell the trap. Our enemy does not put a "Be Careful" sign up. A little girl was playing dress up at a neighbour's place. One said to her, "Try it on." She said, "I had better not, in case I like it." This was a little trap. It is better to shun the bait than to struggle in the snare. One time a girl gave us a warning. She thought the best thing was to go out to try her own wings and fly on her own, no longer be concerned with the guidelines of her parents. So she went her merry way. She was cursed with good looks and had the ability to be a model. She went to the place where she could fulfill her dreams and became a model in the far away country of Virginia. She married a rich man, her picture was on the packets of cigarettes, she had reached the top. A few years later she was a long ways down from the top. She came to her parents a mess. She spent the last years of her life warning others not to go down that route. "It was a snare," she said. She saw the bait, it looked fine but it was not so nice. I wonder if all of you young folks could understand what I have to say to you. My heart aches for some of you, as we do not want you to fall into the snares of this world.

I could tell you of a lady in our field who saw the snare come down on her. Her name is Mary. She was going to school and wanted to go to the school prom. She thought it would be wonderful and she asked us if we thought it would be all right but she did not do so well with us. She did not get to the source of help. She was serving God 18 inches too high. She knew the standard in the home but she loved the world. We stood on the porch of the house trying to listen to her. Her hair was cut and in bangs. She asked if she went to the prom would her parents have the Sunday morning meeting taken out of her home. We said, "No." We asked her, "Why do you want to go?" She replied that she wanted to see what it was like. I do not know whether she saw the bait or not, or just wanted to see what the real world was like. Then she said, "I have one desire:  not do anything immoral." We said that you will have some appetites that will be a detriment to you keeping that desire. So she went off to prom. We saw that snare come down tight; she had less life now so later she wanted a visit. She told us that she did not want to take part in the meeting any longer. She felt she was a hypocrite, she realised you can not live a double life; she could not walk the talk any longer. There were tears, and it is one of the toughest things for worker to see, to see people leave this wonderful fellowship. We did not see her for a long time. We felt comforted by the fact she said she did not want to do anything immoral and so we had to leave her in the hands of God. We knew that there would be rocks at the bottom and sad there was not enough fear in her to stop her going down that road. Then we heard Mary met someone and it ended up that her goal was not achieved as she ended up having a baby. The boy was the town criminal, who was often in jail, he was a no good fellow. At special meeting time we were going through that town and we saw her exchange wedding vows with the town criminal. The baby was born and the father was such a bad fellow that Mary had to have a court order to have him stay away. If any of you young people have thought of taking your own course, you may think of your family. 2 Timothy 2:26, "and that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.”

I do not know where you are at, if you have seen the snare of the world, or whether the snare has compassed around you and is tightening itself upon you or not, but you can recover yourself, there is help to be delivered from it. We may feel that the enemy is telling us it is hopeless but while we have breath it is not hopeless. God can grant us repentance, there is a future for us. There is a another verse, Luke 21:34, “And take heed to yourselves, lest at anytime your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares, for as a snare shall it come to all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth.” We need to watch to escape all these things for we know that snares will come upon all, but there is a remedy we do not need to be caught but can be delivered from it. What are we going to do about it?

One time, a monkey put his hand into the peanut jar. He had his hand full of peanuts but now he could not get his hand out of the jar. The solution was simple. He just had to let go of the peanuts but he could not do it. The solution is simple for us. We just need to let go. There is a remedy, we cannot do it ourselves, the enemy is of a higher kingdom and we are no match for him, so we need the help of God. Sometimes an animal is caught by the foot. There is a struggle, but, if it wants to free itself, it has to lose a foot. Then the animal realises it is better to live without a foot than to die in the trap. We do not want to dwell so much on the negative side, for there is a positive side for us. In Romans it tells us that where sin does abound, grace does much more abound. We can have lots of opposition but also we have more help on our side. We can stay free from the traps. The world, flesh, and devil - all of them to much for us. Each one singularly is too much, but with the help of God we can prevail and get the victory.