15 And heavenly Father, we now come approaching Thee again in prayer. Which no doubt that prayer has already been made among the children of God tonight in this little place, and that songs have been sung, and we have lifted hearts in joyful rejoicings at the praises of God. David said he would come into the congregation of the saints and make his requests known. And tonight, there has been many hands. Perhaps, maybe, I would say, 80 percent of those that are setting in this building tonight raised their hands for requests. Shows, Lord, that we just can't go without You. We've got to have You day by day. You are our Life, our Joy, our Health, our sustaining Strength, our Stay, our Buckler, our Shield from the enemy. And we just could not fight this battle of life without You. It would be totally impossible for us to do it, and we have to totally rely upon You. For we know that we're walking through a dark and dismal land. On every side the enemy has beset us, on giving traps and snares. Our paths, Lord, are set full of snares of the enemy to upset us.

2Luke 21:31-36 So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand. 32 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled. 33 Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away. 34 And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.

3Luke 21:34-35 (NIV) 34 "Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap. 35 For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole earth.

4Notice Luke 21:34 where we see the condition of the people, and why they miss this Parousia Presence and setting up of His invisible Kingdom. And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged (that’s means weighed down) with surfeiting (surfeiting is a bad headache caused by much drinking.), and drunkenness (Drunkenness is a condition where the keenness and sharpness of the mind and senses are dulled to what is really happening around them), and cares of this life (Notice how the cares of this life come in and are associated with a mental condition like drunkenness, but here is the key…) , and so that day come upon you unawares.

5There it is, Jesus is warning us that the cares of this life will cloud the brain like drunkenness and the people will not be aware that the Kingdom of God is being established in the earth. You see Peter tells us to gird up the loins of our mind at the time of the Revelation of Jesus Christ. We have to have sharp minds to catch the revelation. We can’t afford to cloud them over with drink and cares of this life, but that is exactly what is happening to the people.

6And yet we all think, Yeah, that’s right. It is happening to them, but never to me, and then when we get to that place we have already deceived ourselves.

735 For as a snare (a snare is a trap, so like a trap) shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. (what will come? The cares of this life. The everyday living, it will come on everyone like a trap, and what's the purpose? To keep you so occupied that you will miss the very thing you have longed to see. The Kingdom of God being established here in the earth,)

836 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before(The word again means to stand “in the presence of “) the Son of man.

9Now in this scripture we are told that the cares of this life or anxiety is actually is as a trap or snare for all who live on the face of this earth. Why? Because just as a trap it doesn't end there. If our focus is on the things of this world, then we will be caught up into those anxieties which become a snare to us. So you see the snare is set for those who do not have their focus on the path.

10I remember when I was a young boy, I had watched Tarzan show and saw how they set traps for wild animals. So the next time we were playing guns in the woods, I cut a vine and made a noose in it, set a small not in it and cut a notch in a nearby tree to hold it down, then I laid the noose end on a few small sticks to hold it of the ground so as to catch the foot of the bad guys and then I covered the noose end with leaves. I set it on a path in the woods, and I waited for the bad guys to come along. I knew that if they were not paying attention they would get caught in the trap.

11And that is exactly what Satan has been set for mankind in this hour. A trap has been set for those whose focus is not upon Christ and His Promises for this end-time. Those who are lazily walking though life without paying attention to the conditions of the hour. Didn't Jesus warn us "if the man of the house had know what hour the thief was coming, he would have prepared his home and he would not have suffered the thief to break in."

12Our focus should be on standing in the presence of the Son of Man as Jesus tells us here. We should not be concerned with the cares of this life, because they are considered a snare to the real things that God has in store for us. And remember people, every time we see people caught in a trap in the scriptures, they were destroyed.

13The snares that trap and catch men are all different; but Satan, seems to not give up on any man while he still has a chance to snare him. And he finds some way by which to confuse, entangle, sidetrack and secure the downfall of all men where it is possible.

14We can look all threw the Bible and see that men of God seemed to fall for something that became a snare to them and they lost out on the promise for their day as a result. The snare in Gideon's case was gold; with Samson and David and Solomon, it was lust; with Saul it was envy; with Balaam and Judas it was money; with Demas it was the love of this present world.

15To this day men are falling away from duty and from God on account of these things. And because the Devil has had such success in the employment of these baited traps and flower-covered pitfalls, he is as persistent in his temptations these days as in former times. He knows the power of the snare and the weakness of the nature he has to deal with, and never seems to be discouraged.

16This is the reason that the Bible has so much to say about "Watching and Praying;" about working out one's salvation with fear and trembling; and utters the peculiarly solemn words, "Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall." We have all known men who not only thought they stood, but really did stand in grace and were used of God; and yet we have seen them sour, grow bitter, become envious, backslide in heart, backslide in life and then lay around for years as helpless, useless and melancholy in appearance as the wrecks of ships thrown by a storm on the beach and left after that to whiten and fall to pieces as the days and months rolled by. God save us from the snare of Gideon and from those of Saul, Samson, David, Judas and Demas and from any and every other kind which the enemy of our souls would place in position to cripple and capture us, and finally, to destroy and damn us, both soul and body, in hell forever.

17Amos 3:5 Can a bird fall in a trap upon the earth, where no snare [has been set] for him? shall [one] place a snare in the earth, where there is nothing at all to catch? 6 Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? shall there be disaster in a city, and the LORD hath not done [it]? 7 Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets. 8 The lion hath roared, who will not fear? the Lord GOD hath spoken, who can but prophesy?

18When God sends you a prophet, it is because God wants you to know something. This is the man that you must listen to. And He gives you a choice, you either listen and be saved, or if you choose not to listen, you will be destroyed. Not much of a choice, but I like it that way. Strait to the point. He said, "this is the way, walk ye in it."

19But notice what Amos is telling us. Amos 3:5 Can a bird fall in a trap upon the earth, where no snare has been set for him? shall one place a snare in the earth, where there is nothing at all to catch?

20And the greatest catch in this hour is the Elect Bride of Jesus Christ. So, Satan has all his guns aimed at her in this hour. And if that is so, the he's got to be setting his snares to catch every soul that he can. And when you understand what those snares are you will also know to flee from them with all your life. Flee, get away from those things.

21And so what is the snare to the church in this hour? The Apostle Paul told us it is a wrong Word.

22Romans 11:7-10 What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded 8 (According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day. 9 And David saith, Let their table be made a snare, and a trap, and a stumblingblock, and a recompence unto them: 10 Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their back alway.

23The snare is scripture itself, inasmuch as it is understood and handed down or taught in a deceitful manner, so that under the show of pious instruction the souls of the deceived and simple are craftily ensnared. From one and the same table, or from one and the same Holy Scriptures, one draws for himself death while the other life, the one honey and the other poison. Hence, nothing else should be treated with such reverence and so altogether without arrogance as the Word of God. It at once ensnares the proud and traps and offends them, though in a way that they do not perceive: Indeed, in a fascinating and beautiful disguise. And this is not the Words fault, but that of human pride, which arrogantly raises it's head against it. The stumbling block consists of this, that they who are ensnared by false teaching constantly take offense. For if they are ensnared it is through that which they understand wrongly. To that they cleave and with it they are pleased. So without realizing it, they permit themselves to be ensnared willingly. But they take offense of what is pointed out to them as the truth from which they turn away. If they can not avoid it, (the truth) they distort it and deny that scripture must be so understood. At last their eyes are darkened 11:10, so that while others see, they themselves do not permit themselves to be enlightened, and while all others are raised up, they remain perverted in their mind.

242 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.

251 Timothy 6:9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.

26Isaiah 28:7 But they also have erred through wine, and through strong drink are out of the way; the priest and the prophet have erred through strong drink, they are swallowed up of wine, they are out of the way through strong drink; they err in vision, they stumble in judgment. 8 For all tables are full of vomit and filthiness, so that there is no place clean. 9 Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. 10 For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little: 11 For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people. 12 To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear. 13 But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken.

27ROTHERHAM: Isaiah 28:8-9 For all tables are full of filthy vomit, there is no place! Whom shall he teach knowledge? And whom would he cause to understand the Message?

28Isaiah 28:8 NIV All the tables are covered with vomit and there is not a spot without filth. 9 "Who is it he is trying to teach? To whom is he explaining his message?

29LAMSA: Isaiah 28: 89 For all tables are full of vomit and filthiness, so that there is no place clean. To whom shall he teach knowledge, and whom shall he make to understand the report. Those who are weaned from the milk and drawn from the breasts. For filth is upon filth, filth upon filth, vomit upon vomit, vomit upon vomit; a little here, a little there; For with difficult speech and with an alien tongue will he speak to this people. For I have said to them, This is the place of my rest wherewith I may cause the weary to rest, and this is the place of tranquility; but they would not listen. So the Word of the Lord was to them filth upon filth, filth upon filth vomit upon vomit vomit upon vomit a little here little there that they might return and fall backwards an be broken and snared and taken.

30John 8: 34 Jesus said, "he that committeth sin is the servant of sin." Then we found in 2 Peter 2: 19 that when we are overcome by a certain influence, we thus become in bondage to that influence.

31Now thus far in our study we have found that this bondage is a result of an influence that begins with anxiety. The Devil has laid out a snare or trap for every one in the whole world. And that snare or trap is in the guise of the economy. He knows that people have to make a living. He has known that since the curse that was placed upon man for his disobedience in the garden. In fact he was responsible for that curse being placed upon man. And so then we see that he took advantage of that situation and he has manipulated man into a wrong focus again.

32The other thing the Apostle points out is that they are causing offenses which are contrary. Now the Greek word for offenses here is the word skandalon in which we get our English equivalent scandal. Literally it is a stumbling block, an occasion of stumbling, a thing that offends, 1a) the movable stick or trigger of a trap, a trap stick; a trap, snare; any impediment placed in the way causing one to stumble or fall.

33So here we find the Apostle warning the people of those brethren that would be doing things that are contrary to the doctrine and which would be causing the people to fall or to stumble because of the things they are doing.

34And what are we to do when we see that there are ones causing sedition and who are doing things which are contrary to the doctrine we have been taught? He said avoid them!

35Romans 16:17 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.

36Is that all we are to do Paul? Yes, that is all. Just avoid them. Don't go near them. Just let them alone. Notice, these are not people who are just ignorant of the doctrine, and don't know any better. But these are men who willfully use means to dissuade and cause sedition, insurrection and harm to the doctrine, and those who would stand by it.

37Luke 21:34 NIV Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with spending too much time and energy on indulging yourself with pleasure, drunkenness, and the anxieties of life which is (worrying and becoming apprehensive about what may happen), and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap or snare. For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole earth. Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand in the Presence of the Son of Man."

38And then in Luke 14: 33 Jesus Said, "Whosoever be of you who is not willing to forsake all that he has, he has cannot be my disciple." Now, those are pretty strong words from our Lord, but 99% commitment just won't cut it with Him. It's either all or nothing. Either you're in or your out. He said, "He that is not with me is against me." And he also said in the Book of Revelations to the church of Laodicea. "And because they are neither cold nor hot I will spew thee out of My mouth."

39Now, the rich young ruler did all the commandments of God yet when it came time to surrender all that he had in a final gesture of total commitment to Christ, he could not depart from his material possessions. He almost made it. Almost, but one word off is Satan's kingdom. The Bible even tells us that Jesus loved him much, but later Jesus tells us the story of how this rich young ruler had died and was burning up in hell, and asked Abraham to send the beggar Lazarus with a drop of water to quench his thirst. And looking up from hell he pleaded with Abraham to send some one to warn his brothers, But Abraham said, "Though one be raised from the dead they won't believe Him!" And I tell you this evening, that One has Raised from the dead and is standing in their very midst today and yet they believe him not!

40The other thing the Apostle points out is that they are causing offenses which are contrary. Now the Greek word for offenses here is the word skandalon in which we get our English equivalent scandal. Literally it is a stumbling block, an occasion of stumbling, a thing that offends, 1a) the movable stick or trigger of a trap, a trap stick; a trap, snare; any impediment placed in the way causing one to stumble or fall.

41So here we find the Apostle warning the people of those brethren that would be doing things that are contrary to the doctrine and which would be causing the people to fall or to stumble because of the things they are doing.

42And what are we to do when we see that there are ones causing sedition and who are doing things which are contrary to the doctrine we have been taught? He said avoid them!

43Let us pray