Talk 2:

BO SANCHEZ: Today I want to preach on the message Step On the Serpent.

I have a story I’d like to share with you from the Jurassic era of my life.

When I was in Grade 6, I had a classmate— his name was Ariel. And you see, for some reason, there were only 4 guys in our class of 40. So, Ariel and I became friends. But immediately, I knew that he had lots of stuff that I didn’t have.

The first one – the most obvious one—was that he was very, very intelligent.

His grades were like rocketships. They danced up to the stars. Mine were submarines. They dove to the depths of the murky waters and darkness.

Second, he was a star athlete. I mean—basketball, football, baseball— ang galing-galing niya.—he was very good. Me… never mind.

You know, there was one time, I was playing Jackstone.

So, imagine: I am sitting on the floor, and of course, I am losing. And then Ariel comes, sits down– oh my gosh, star player in Jackstone! Do you remember the exhibition part? You’re supposed to have three loops—this guy has eight! Olympic-level Jackstone exhibition.


Oh, by the way, of course, guapo— handsome. I mean Ariel was guapo.

Remember, 36 girls, 4 guys – so, he had a fans club of girls following him.

I mean, at that time, I did not know what that meant– at that time.

Anyway, I kind comforted myself. You know, this guy may be brainy, this guy may be athletic…But I had one skill– and I was proud of it. I knew how to draw. Like, Science notebook, Math notebook– whatever notebook I had, half of them were filled with drawings.

I loved drawing and I knew I was a good illustrator.

Now, there was this one day, our Homeroom teacher, she had an activity for us. She wrote each of our names on pieces of paper, gathered the pieces, put them in a box. We were supposed to pick one– and then, on the spot, create a greeting card for that person.

And I said, “Hah, yes, my territory. I’m good here.”

So, I drew my greeting card for my classmate, and I remember, it was Superman.

Then it was time to give our greeting cards to each other. And lo, and behold, you know who picked my name? Ariel!

Of course. He comes to me, gives to me his card, and my jaw dropped.

The card looked like Hallmark. I mean, he drew this luxury ship – with the etching and shadows, and the color combination, and then calligraphy – professional-level calligraphy. You know what he wrote? This:

I like red ships, I like blue ships, but most of all, I like friendship. —Ariel.

You know, after that, I went to God and said, “Lord, naman, o. Why are You so unfair? You gave him so many talents, you did not give me one. Well, I have a little—drawing– but look, he is ten times better than me. Lord, why?”

Two Phases of Envy

I want you to know that I was envious of Ariel. But thanks be to God that it did not go into malevolence, intense hatred. I mean, I did not wish him evil, or bad stuff, because as I grew up, I realized that envy has two phases.

And that’s when you start pulling him down. That’s when you judge.

That’s when you criticize. That’s when you wish him ill.

We’re going to read the story of someone who experienced that. And I have learned in life now, the ways to combatthe evil of envy :

No. 1:

No. 2:

Trust in God that I too will discover the abundance in my life. To be able to trust in God—that is very important.

My experience, looking back, I really believe that Ariel challenged me— challenged me to discover my own gifts. They’re there – I didn’t just see them, but they’re there. So, all my academic life—I want you to know, be honest with you— that my grades remained submarines. But I discovered that my communication gifts were like rocketships. I discovered that later in my life.

That’s my challenge to you.

This is not part of the talk but I just want to encourage you: If you’ve not yet discovered your rocketship, you will.

Sin Has Its Consequences

Last week, we were reading about God creating this good world, and then He creates human beings, and then He says,

“I want you to partner with Me and to rule this world.”

We, human beings, decided to partner with the Serpent. That’s what happened…

So, we pick up from there.

Sin has its consequences. Sin creates problems. That’s what happens. Sin brings death. When the human beings partnered with the Serpent, God had to do something. And this is the first thing that He did:

This is a promise: that a Victor will come, and this Victor will crush the head of the Serpent. And this Victor will come from human offspring. Who will this Victor be? This is Genesis 3, spoken to the Serpent. Could it be the children of Adam and Eve? Could it be their eldest, their firstborn? What’s his name? Spoiler alert: No, he was not: Let’s read:

The Lord accepts one gift. He did not accept the other.

The Focus: Cain’s Reaction

The Lord accepted Abel and his gift. But he did not accept Cain and his gift. Why? We can only guess. We’re not sure of this but this might be the reason that Abel gave the best from his flock but there was no mention of Cain giving his best.

So, maybe… we’re not sure, and the author does not make it clear. Why? Because that’s not his focus. The focus is not on the reason for the rejection but on the response of Cain for the rejection.

How did Cain respond to this rejection? It says here:

Could there have been a better reaction? You see someone blessed—Abel’s offering was accepted. God blessed Abel. I look at that, my offering was not blessed. Is there a better reaction than “Unfair!” Rage and sadness.

How about this reaction: “Abel, ang galling mo naman.– You’re so good. I’m so happy for you. God accepted you. Turuan mo naman ako—Teach me how you did it.”

Would that be a better reaction? Yes. But did Cain respond in that way? No. But the key is this: When you see someone blessed, what you want to do is celebrate his abundance. That’s what you want to do. And then you trust in God that your abundance is coming. Amen.

Familiar Story

But the story is so familiar. Does this story remind you of Thor and Loki? Marvel fans.

Or– if you’re like me, with two boys, growing up, we watched thousands of Disney movies—Does this remind you of Scar and Mufasa?

Or– some of you, you read lots of books— Do you remember Little Women?

The point is this: In the Bible, sibling rivalry is so real. And why?

Because that’s our reality. The story of Cain and Abel was just the beginning. You’ve got so many other rivalries between brothers. From Isaac, to Ishmael, and from Esau vs. Jacob, and then Joseph vs. his bothers, and then David vs. his brothers—on and on.

And it doesn’t even have to be blood brothers. Think about our media or literature, our novels, and movies. Go back to superheroes: Professor X vs.

Magnito; Spiderman vs. his best friend Harry; or Captain America vs. Bucky.

Here: Do you know that DC says Clark Kent and Lex Luther were childhood friends?

Our Reality

Why would even fiction talk about those rivalries? Because that’s who we are. That’s our reality. That we’ve got best friends, we’ve got close

friends … Why do we keep on hurting each other? You know, when you really think about it,

We’re all one big family.

And yet why do we keep on hurting each other?

It’s this:

We envy our sibling. We envy our neighbor. We envy our officemate. We envy our classmate. We envy the person, the stranger who sits in front of the bus, right there in front of us—if he looks taller, if he’s better dressed, if he’s more guapo, if he’s happier—we envy him.

Beneath envy is really emptiness. And you know the funny thing about that – yes, insecurity and all of that.

The crazy thing is this: we don’t want to admit we’re envious. Actually, when we’re envious, we clothe our envy with anger.

The reason is if you’re going to acknowledge that you’re envious, you’re acknowledging that you’re being petty. And so, we clothe it with anger, and it comes out as annoyance. It comes out as, “Ang yabang-yabang niya. –He is very, very boastful.”

And so today, we’re going to keep on reading. Audee is going to read a story and you are going to see how God will respond to Cain.

Sin Grows Roots

AUDEE VILLARAZA: Talking about the sin of envy. I want to talk to you about this topic of sin for the next few moments.

Sin… probably I don’t even need to preach this. Because you know that sin is dangerous. Sin is bad. But you know one thing about sin is that you leave it in your life long enough for it to grow roots. It will steal, kill, and destroy everything that you hold dear.

I mean, it’s going to kill your relationships. It’s going to destroy your good habits. It’s going to steal your resources.

That’s what sin does. Because ultimately, what sin wants to do is to consume your soul.

It wants to destroy your soul. Something so powerful that God said to Cain:

God says if you refuse to do what is right, guess what: You have the power to choose not to do what’s right. You’ve got the option to do what’s not right. Why? Because of free will. But free will comes with certain responsibilities.

Bro. Bo talking about Marvel movies: In the film Spiderman, what did Uncle Ben tell Peter Parker? “With great power comes great responsibility.”

I said that one time and then somebody told me, “With great power comes a high electricity bill.”


With great power comes great responsibility. That’s why there is a warning. If you refuse to do what is right, then watch out. God says a warning: Sin is couching at the door– waiting to pounce on you like a predator to its prey.

You want to know what creature likes to crouch? Likes to crawl? Like to slither? The Serpent.

The author of Genesis is actually pointing us all the way back to the story of man—to the Fall of man, to the story of Creation, to the first time Adam and Eve sinned. So, there’s this hyperlink happening here. The author is pointing us to the time when original sin was committed.

You know, I was thinking just a while ago at the backstage, if Adam and Eve’s sin is called original sin, what do we call our sin? Is it fake sin? Pirated sin? Phony sin? I don’t know. I’m just sharing with you my raw thoughts, okay?

When Sin Becomes Normal

God says this: Sin, it’s crouching at the door, it’s

It wants to dominate you —to rule over your life. It wants to pin you down

into submission.

Question: How do you know when sin has already dominated you?

When sin is already in control of your life?

Very simple answer—this is not my personal opinion: sin is already in control of your life when it has become normal. It’s become, you know, second nature to you. You don’t worry about it anymore. You do the simple act and then you take a good rest. You do the simple deed and then you go watch a movie, you go on a date.

That’s when you know that sin has penetrated in your life. When lying has become normal. When stealing has become normal. When cheating has become normal. When corruption has become normal. That’s when you know that sin has grown in your life. You’re not even bothered by it anymore.

You know what? This is a dangerous place to be in. This is a very deadly place to be in. I believe this: Once sin takes root in your life—you know what, the Devil doesn’t have to do anything after that. Because all he needs to do is watch you grow that sin, grow more roots.

That’s why I believe this: That corrupt people, they don’t need enemies anymore. Why? Because their greatest enemies are themselves.

That’s why we got to talk about sin. Because it’s damaging our families. It’s damaging our relationships.

Battle with Sin

Make no mistake: Adam and Eve, they fought with sin. You know what that tells me? We are forever destined to fight with sin. We’re destined to battle with sin. But the battle against sin is not the way we look at it.

Some of us, whenever we look at battles – we look at a battle as a one-time event. Whenever a battle is done, the war is done. Yeah, we’re victorious. We praise God.

But I want you to know this: that God looks at victory in a different way. He looks at the definition of victory in a very different way. Let me explain this through an example.

How many of you recently celebrated the win of the Golden State Warriors in the National Basketball Association (NBA) Finals? I love the Golden State

Warriors. Since 2015, I’ve followed them. I have one rule in my home, one simple rule: every time there’s an NBA Finals, nobody is allowed to talk to me for two hours.

And so, recently, the Warriors won. They are the 2022-2023 NBA champions! And we all celebrated!

But it wasn’t always like that. Early on, they lost to the Toronto Raptors. And then, they lost one of their star players, Kevin Durant, to the Brooklyn Nets. And then they also lost Klay Thompson, one of their key players, to injury.

Then 2020, they also lost. So, their bashers were saying, “We’re never gonna see the Warriors in an NBA Finals. The dynasty is dead. “

So, imagine the victory of this team!

What You Become

Sometimes, you realize the truth that with winners, there will always be haters. That’s what the Golden State Warriors experienced. So, when they won, it was such a sweet victory.

But then a few days later, I was reading in social media, some of the guys—and I’m not talking about random guys, I’m talking about the lead, key players—they started talking back at the people who talked against them. They were trash-talking people, in spite of their win.

And– this is just my personal opinion—you can disagree with me, I can handle that, that’s fine. But I truly believe this: They won the championship. But at some point,

I felt like, they also lost. Why? Because of their attitude.

Because the victory that God wants for us is not just an external victory. It’s an internal victory. God wants to win within.

One other example.

I watched this movie, a few months ago, titled American Underdog. This is a true-to- life story about a guy named Kurt Warner.

All his life Kurt wanted to play in the NFL – the National Football League. He wanted to go pro. And ever since he was young, he had the skills, he was big, he was strong, he was fast, he had the talent to do it. But for some reason he just could not catch a break.

He had a good life, by the way—good relationship, he was loved by his wife, he had a good livelihood. But every time he would look at the mirror, he saw himself as a failure. Because he wasn’t at the NFL. That was his dream.

Until there was this beautiful conversation between him and his coach played by Dennis Quaid.

The coach said, “Kurt, all your life you’ve been trying to measure your success based on your achievements—on what you did right, your dream. And just because you’re not in the NFL, you feel like you’ve failed in life.”

And then he said these words that I will never forget. He said:


Life is a journey. It’s not an event. And I hope I can speak this to somebody here today to know the truth that the victory that God wants you to have is not a one-time event. But it’s a process. If you win the victory, but you remain vengeful, and sinful, and bitter, guess what: you really did not win anything. If you passed the test, but you cheated your way to that test, guess what: you didn’t really win anything, did you? If you get the girl, or you get the guy, but you lied your way to that relationship, you didn’t really win anything. If you got the promotion but you bribed your way up on the corporate ladder, and you stepped over a dozen people, you didn’t win anything.

Because the victory that God wants you to win in your life is not just a one- time event. Praise God, for the victory He wins for us.

The victory—and this is the way God will handle sin—is called transformation. It’s a life-long process where God is changing you and changing me, and changing him, and changing her to become more and more like Jesus.

So, imagine: If there’s this personal transformation happening in all of us.

We’re conquering sin deep within because God wants to win within. That’s how God will win the victory against sin: If He wins in you.

But you know. sadly, in the story that we’re studying about Cain and Abel, Cain did not win the victory—that is, not within. He won the external victory over his brother. He was envious but he won. But deep within, he lost.

Cain lost this battle.

Let’s read in Genesis 4:

Quick lesson: Sin will not always be packaged in a scary way. The enemy is very clever and cunning. You know how he will package sin? It’s something very attractive. It’s not scary like, you know, horror movies. No.

Moving Forward

Sin will come in your life in the form of, sometimes, a brother. Friendly brother. But that brother has evil intentions. It will come, sometimes, in the form of a sister with a seemingly friendly invitation.

So, what can we learn from here?

First, how do we respond to things like that? You have to acknowledge the truth that

hey, we live in a broken world– the people around you are broken. Each of us have been hurt in one way or another.

So, we acknowledge the truth that hey, we have been hurt.

And we know the wisdom: Hurt people hurt people. So, if you have been on the receiving side of hurt, I want you to think about this…

If you’ve been hurt, first thing, I want you to discern: “In my hurt, am I also hurting others?”

You might be in the receiving side of hurt, but you might also be on the giving side of hurt. But if you feel like– in a genuine way– that you did not do anything to earn that hurt, what you do is just surrender that hurt to the Lord. Let God heal you. You receive His mercy. And then you ask God to teach you how to forgive. Because my friends, forgiveness is the only way you can move forward.

So, here’s my advice: Love people. Yes. Love people. But love them wisely, noy blindly, okay?

You love wisely. Entertain people in your life. But don’t just give your heart to the next person that you see. This is advice for all the single people.

Generational Sin

What happens next in the story: After Cain killed Abel, God punished Cain, as we read in Verses 11-12 (below).

What was happening here? Cain actually condemned his future. But not only that. Cain actually cursed the next generation.

And in life that happens. We call this generational sin. We pass the sin from one generation to the next generation, to the next generation… That’s why there are families that are so dysfunctional because it’s like:

“Lolo cheated on Lola, and now Daddy cheated on Mom. And now I’m destined to cheat against my wife.”

But hey, it’s not a destiny. It’s choice. It’s a decision that you make. I want you to challenge yourself, starting today, that as you might have received a curse or something from your past, from your family– that you had been taught over the years– I want you to be the kind of Christ Follower that over that timeline, you will be the first person to say:

“It ends with me. The sin stops with me. I’m not going to pass it to my children. I’m not going to pass it to my sibling.

I’m not even going pass it to my friends.

Because the sin stops with me.”

Two Choices

That’s right. Because you’ve got a choice. Two choices actually: 1. Either you step on the Serpent– you kill the sin completely; 2. Or you live long enough to actually become the Serpent. Either you step on the sin, on the Serpent, or eventually, if you don’t, you become that Serpent.

We’ve learned about two of the children of Adam and Eve. By the way, Adam and Eve did the sin. So, sin followed the children.

But the author is actually giving us a surprise. Because this doesn’t end with Cain and Abel. There’s actually a third child.

The number 3 is very significant in the Bible. We preached about this when we studied the book of Jonah—how the number 3 signifies New Life. The Third Day is a symbol of New Life.

Abraham walked on the mountain—to Mt. Moriah. Because God told him to sacrifice there his one and only son, Isaac. And imagine, if you’re a parent, sacrificing your only son, your only child. But then at the foot of Mt. Moriah, an angel stopped Abraham—just before he could do the deed. When was that? Three days later. Abraham experienced New Life.

Noah also experienced New Life. He and his family were the only survivors from this Great Flood. But then because they were in the midst of a water world, Noah had to search for dry land. He sent a bird to look for a dry land. Few days later, the bird came back. No dry land. After a few days—seven days—Noah sent another bird and again, that bird came back. But the third time, he sent that bird out, the bird never came back. So, Noah experienced New Life.

But if there is a person whom we look to the most, who symbolizes the Number 3, He has to be Jesus Himself. Jesus was buried dead in a tomb—back then, people were mourning. Jesus awoke from His death. He was raised to life. When? Three days later. New Life.

And I’m praying that God would breathe New Life in that old breath of yours.

He would replace your old dreams with God’s dreams.

The Third Child

In the story, we hear about two children—Cain and Abel. Adam and Eve already failed. Can you imagine your kid killing his brother?

Thank God—that He is not finished yet. Because there was a third child. The third child named Seth. In the Hebrew language, the word seth

means anointed or placed— not by accident, but by Divine Appointment.

In Genesis 5:3, the author says Seth was so much like his dad Adam.

So, you see, down the timeline, if you can imagine this: You got Cain, you got Abel, you got Seth. And you failed with the first two. You failed miserably. But then there is a third child. What is the message in all of this? You might be buried in some sin, and some struggle, and in some difficulties, and some challenges in your life. And God knows you are trying… You try to get rid of that pornography or substance addiction. You’re trying to get rid of that infidelity. But you keep on failing, you keep on backsliding.

But here’s the message of hope: that in this kind of life – of Cain and Abel, of failure after failure, after failure– something significant happens.

Because in the Bible, in the book of Genesis, nothing much is mentioned about Seth. You don’t hear a lot about Seth. But Seth plays a very vital role.

Remember the time when God promised a Champion to the world?

God said “I will send you a Champion who will crush the head of the Serpent. That Champion was not Cain. It was not Abel. It was not even Seth.

Who was that champion? Jesus!

Question: Where did Jesus come from? Jesus was not a descendant of Abel. Abel didn’t even have kids. He died. He wasn’t a descendant of Cain.

Jesus was a descendant of Seth.

The Lord’s Message

The message of the Lord for all of us today is that you can have failure, after failure, after failure– but if you choose not to give up, eventually God can turn your biggest setback into the greatest comeback ever.

Never give up. Because you don’t know that down in your timeline, there might be a sin, and a sin, and a sin—but eventually there will be victory. Because God sees victory in a different way. It’s not a one-time event. You could fail in this event. You could fail in this event.

But the victory is in the process. It’s where God is changing you.

So, ask yourself this question: In the work that you do, whatever work that is– in the family he’s planted you into, in the place where God will call you to migrate to, in the mission that He calls you to do—the question is: It’s not about what you’re doing. It’s about who you are becoming.

Are you becoming more like Jesus? Or you’re becoming somebody else?

Are you becoming more loving like Jesus? Because the winning is not in the doing. The winning is in the becoming.

I can end the message here but I want to convict still some of you here today.

Because I know the kind of sin that we go through – it’s not easy. You get to a point in your life where you’ve recovered from some addictions, you’ve recovered from lying, you’ve recovered from cheating, you’ve recovered from gambling, or gossiping. But all it takes, sometimes, is just one pull, one nudge, one tap on the shoulder– and then you’re back into that same sin. It’s hard, it’s hard.

But the promise that I received this week is that Yes, it’s hard, but we don’t have to do it alone. The Devil is so clever and cunning that he can easily outsmart you. You can’t defeat the Devil on your own.

But here’s the message: You cannot outsmart him, but you can certainly overcome him. How? Through the power of Jesus at work in your life. It’s by the power and the grace of the Lord our God, Jesus Christ Himself who can overcome temptation, who can overcome sin, that will enable you to overcome the same sins in your life. But you have to make that decision:

Will you allow Jesus to be your God?

Choose: Will you follow Cain, or will you follow Christ? Will you follow the one who took the life of his brother? Or, will you follow the One who gave His life to His brothers and to his sisters? Will you follow the one who was so envious?

Or will you follow the One who was so secure in His Father’s love? There’s no comparison for Jesus because He knew He was perfectly loved.

There Is Power in Jesus’ Name!

Will you follow Cain or will you follow Christ?

The choice is yours. You make the choice today based on the posture of your heart.

This will be your prayer. Make it your own in the Presence of the Lord.

God almighty, we thank You for the strength that we know You can give us. We are imperfect. We are frail. We are fragile. We are limited—in the sense that we have fallen from grace.

We battle with sin. But we thank You that we don’t have to do this alone. We thank You that the Holy Spirit is working in us to fight with us and to fight for us. And so, in Your Presence, right now, we surrender all our sins – the sin of envy, the sin of pride, every sin that we have accumulated, that have been planted in the garden of our life.

Father, we ask You to help us get rid of all these sins. We surrender them to You at the foot of the Cross, knowing and believing that You can handle them all. We thank You for we are not alone. Thank You for the promise of victory in our life, Lord. We may not see it right now, but we certainly believe in the promise of tomorrow. Down our timeline, there is a promise that one day, we will attain the victory. Thank You, Jesus. Thank You for the power of Your Name. There is power in Your Name, Jesus, and we declare this today: that there is healing in Your Name. There is strength in Your Name. There is Love in Your Name, There is mercy in Your Name. And so, we walk in this faith, in this victory of Jesus.

Let’s worship the Lord, Everybody.

BO SANCHEZ: Life is a choice. It’s a choice that you and I have to make – whether we love

or whether we hate. A choice that we have to make whether we are for Cain or for Christ. Are we going to follow the Serpent, and be a partner of the Serpent, or are we going to partner with Jesus?

It’s a choice that we make every moment of our life. But today, I want you to renew your commitment, your choice for Jesus. And for some of you, it might just even the first time you’re doing this choice. I want to congratulate you.

May I lead you into that prayer right now?

Christ or Cain? We choose Christ. Would it be the sin and the Serpent? Or will it be Jesus? Let’s choose now. If you can lift your hands to the Lord as a symbol of openness, everybody, say:

I choose Jesus. I follow Jesus my whole life and I offer to Jesus my heart. Come in, Jesus, be Lord. Be our Savior. Transform me. Change me. To become like You for the rest of my life. I am yours. I am yours. Amen.


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