In the King James Bible, Mark 16:18 says, “They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them.” Coots and his followers believe that God calls upon them to handle venomous serpents and to drink other poisons.
Where in the Bible does it talk about snakes?
Jesus exhorted them, “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves” (Matthew 10:16).
Why do churches handle snakes?
They fully believe that adherents need to handle the snakes as a demonstration of their having the Holy Spirit within. … And, if they get bitten by the snake, then they lack the true Spirit. Moreover, if they are bitten, then the congregation prays over them. If they die, then God intended for that to happen.
Why did God turn the staff into a snake?
Snakes on Staffs in Egypt
Before the poisonous snake incident in the desert with Moses, while the Israelites were still in Egypt in Exodus 7, Aaron threw his staff down before Pharaoh and it turned into a snake. This was a miracle given by God to show Moses and Aaron’s authority to Pharaoh.
What does handling a snake mean?
Snake handling, also called serpent handling, is a religious rite observed in a small number of isolated churches, mostly in the United States, usually characterized as rural and part of the Holiness movement. … Participants are Holiness, Pentecostals, Charismatics, or other evangelicals.
What did God say about snakes?
So the LORD God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, “Cursed are you above all the livestock and all the wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life.
What do snakes represent in the Bible?
It can represent death, destruction, evil, a penetrating legless essence, and/or poison. In the Christian tradition, Satan (in the guise of the serpent) instigated the fall by tricking Eve into breaking God’s command. Thus the serpent can represent temptation, the devil, and deceit.
What religion uses snake handling?
Practiced by a small fraction of rural charismatic Protestants, snake handling is often identified with the Church of God with Signs Following or other holiness churches.
What religion is called holy rollers?
Holy Roller or Holy Jumper are terms originating in the 19th century and used to refer to some Protestant Christian churchgoers in the Wesleyan-Holiness movement, such as Free Methodists and Wesleyan Methodists.
Why do Pentecostals speak in tongues?
The Spirit’s arrival on Pentecost “marks the origin of the Christian church,” said Spittler. Speaking in tongues is the “initial physical evidence” that a person has been baptized in the Holy Spirit, according to Pentecostal tradition.
Who picked up a snake in the Bible?
The people then acknowledged their sin and asked Moses to pray to the LORD that He remove the serpents from them. Instead, God commanded Moses to make a serpent and lift it up on a pole so that anyone bitten by the serpents could look at the serpent on the pole and live rather than die.
What does the snake stand for?
Fertility and rebirth
Historically, serpents and snakes represent fertility or a creative life force. As snakes shed their skin through sloughing, they are symbols of rebirth, transformation, immortality, and healing. The ouroboros is a symbol of eternity and continual renewal of life.
Did Moses stick turn into a snake?
The staff is first mentioned in the Book of Exodus (chapter 4, verse 2), when God appears to Moses in the burning bush. God asks what Moses has in his hand, and Moses answers “a staff” (“a rod” in the KJV version). The staff is miraculously transformed into a snake and then back into a staff.
Do all Pentecostals handle snakes?
The tradition of snake-handling in some Pentecostal churches is almost as old as the movement. Today, it is practiced in independent congregations in rural Appalachia. Mainstream denominations reject the practice.
Do snakes need to be handled?
Many reptile experts will say that pet snakes do not need human contact, the way a dog or cat usually needs it. … Granted, I’ll admit that most pet snakes could live long, healthy lives without any contact from their owners (except for what is needed for basic maintenance and cleaning).
Why do Pentecostals have snakes?
Serpent Experts Try To Demystify Pentecostal Snake Handling Earlier this month, NPR reported on a small group of Pentecostal Christians who handle snakes to prove their faith in God.