Why did God curse the snake?

edited December 1969 in Faith Issues

In the Gospel of Mark chapter 5, it says"

And when He had come out of the boat, immediately there met Him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit, 3 who had his dwelling among the tombs; and no one could bind him, not even with chains, 4 because he had often been bound with shackles and chains. And the chains had been pulled apart by him, and the shackles broken in pieces; neither could anyone tame him. 5 And always, night and day, he was in the mountains and in the tombs, crying out and cutting himself with stones.
6 When he saw Jesus from afar, he ran and worshiped Him. 7 And he cried out with a loud voice and said, “What have I to do with You, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I implore You by God that You do not torment me.”
8 For He said to him, “Come out of the man, unclean spirit!” 9 Then He asked him, “What is your name?”
And he answered, saying, “My name is Legion; for we are many.” 10 Also he begged Him earnestly that He would not send them out of the country.

In this passage, Christ forgives,heals and frees the man from the demons.It also says,that no man could tame the demon-possessed man, which clearly shows that the man was not in control of his body and mind.

Going back to Genesis, the snake that tempted Eve did not do so out of its own, but due to Satanic control .Both the man  that Jesus healed and the snake were the tools of Satan.

Why did God curse the snake (the created animal) for something that Satan did? Thanks


  • What do the Fathers say?

    Let me urge us to turn to the Fathers rather than rely on our own understanding.
  • Father bless,

    I did check Fr Tadros Malaty's book on INTERPRETATION OF THE BOOK OF GENESIS before hand. Although he does make extensive use of the Church fathers in his book, he only says this much in regards to the cursing of the serpent:

    "So the Lord said to the serpent ‘Because you have done this, you are cursed more than all cattle, and more than every beast of the field; On your belly youshall go, and you shall eat dust all the days of your life”(Gen. 3: 14).Carrying on the deceits of the devil for man, the serpent got the curse that was: “On your belly you shall go, and you shall eat dust all the days of your life”. So will be every man who becomes an instrument in the hands of the evil one, he will become like a serpent, going on his belly,loving the earthlies; will have no feet to lift him over the dust, nor wings to take him forth above the worldlies; He will love to fill up his stomach with dust, will crawl on his belly, to get lit fulfilled. From another aspect, whoever accept the counsel of the serpent, will lust for the earthlies, to become, himself, earth and dust; namely, he will be food for the serpent to devour.While whoever has the wings of the Holy Spirit, will rise above the dust, setting forth toward heaven, where the serpent, crawling on the earth, can not approach or devour him.St. Augustine says: [The wicked get attached to the earthlies; and being created from earth, they think of it; and being earth, they become food for the serpent.]. , [If you do not want to become food for the serpent, do not be dust ! And how could that be ? If you do not enjoy feeding on the earthlie".
  • It's late here so I can't provide much help at the moment,

    but it would be useful if you extracted the relevant comments from St Ephrem's commentary here, where addresses your question.

    http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=D3BUfDec1ukC&pg=PA24&dq=commentary+genesis+serpent&hl=en&ei=1vrnTZaVHIKu8QOp1qDsCg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCsQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=commentary genesis serpent&f=false

    God bless

    Father Peter
  • Thanks Fr Peter.There is something from page 23- 31. The argument appears to be that the Serpent deserved curse, because it served as a vessel for the works of the devil. But I will have to re- read it carefully.I will get back for more help if the overall commentary is difficult to grasp.
Sign In or Register to comment.