I didn’t see the spider's web until I nearly ran into it. The thing was virtually invisible. If sunlight hadn’t suddenly glistened off its strands, I would have walked right into it. So there I stood, inches from the biggest, ugliest, hairiest spider I’d ever seen. Its open jaws were at least three inches wide and ready to grab me.Well, that last remark is hyperbole, however, truth be told, I was glad I wasn’t a hapless bug flitting through the air, totally clueless about the spider’s trap in front of me.
But while I’m on the subject of spiders and webs, in the near-indiscernible world of the supernatural, Satan’s subtleties are often invisible to the natural eye – which is why it’s so incredibly easy to get caught in his web. And most of the time we don’t even realize it is his web we’re caught in until he has devoured our health, wealth, homes, and families.
Sometimes even our lives.
There is a good reason the Holy Spirit inspired St. Peter to write, “Be sober, be vigilant. Your adversary, the devil, roams about seeking someone to devour" (1 Peter 5:8). There is good reason the Holy Spirit inspired Joshua to say, “This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night so that you will be careful to do all the things that are written in it” (Joshua 1:8). And the Psalmist to write, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path" (Psalm 119:105).There is no better way, there is no surer way, to avoid Satan’s web than to see the light of God’s word glisten off its strands as a warning: Danger! Don’t go any further.
The Church “has always venerated the divine Scriptures as she venerated the Body of the Lord" (Catechism paragraph 141), and the Catechism of the Catholic Church (para 133) further exhorts us “to learn the surpassing knowledge of Jesus Christ, by frequent reading of the divine Scriptures. Ignorance of the Scriptures is ignorance of Christ.” Thus, it is no wonder Pope Benedict repeatedly challenges the Catholic faithful to “assiduous study of Holy Scripture.”
Whether or not we obey the prophets and the Church who exhort us to read God’s word, Satan remains patiently waiting in his web. Problem is, we won’t see it unless God’s light glistens off the web.
See this link for one of many methods available to make Bible reading a daily habit. (Note to those living in the Tacoma area. I teach a weekly Bible study each Monday evening. Write me if you would like more information: firstname.lastname@example.org).