Bear Bait

June 6, 2024
Volume 28, Number 15

Residents of a Monrovia, California neighborhood have discovered something that will attract bears. A recent UPI story told of a bear that had been caught on camera entering a home through a window and leaving with a bag of Oreos cookies in its mouth. Though people were outside watching as the bear ambled by, it appeared unconcerned. It had found what it was looking for.

The same resident spoke of an earlier visit the bear had made to their house. It had walked into the garage and headed straight for a refrigerator there. Once opened, the bear found a box with chocolate cake inside, and sat down to enjoy it. Not surprisingly, the neighbors have named this bear “Oreo” because of its love for chocolate.

The folks of Monrovia are not deliberately setting out chocolate to attract bears; it’s just a fact that has been illustrated a couple of times. There have been times I have put out bait to attract mice, but that was for the purpose of eliminating them from our house. (Peanut butter works well, I have found.) I have also seen apples used as bait to catch raccoons and possums.

God’s word doesn’t say much about bears, but there’s a concerning passage about a lion on the loose: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8). To my knowledge there are no lions in my community, but Peter says there is one that is closer than I may realize. “Be sober, be vigilant,” he warns.

James tells us more about the methods this “lion” uses, and it’s interesting to learn that he uses bait that we desire. “But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death” (James 1:14,15). The lion can only devour me if I cooperate. He knows the bait that entices me and uses that bait to lure me into his trap. I don’t have to give in, but I usually want to.

I have learned through fishing that having the right bait matters if you want to catch something. Some “bait” doesn’t tempt me at all, while other kinds of bait powerfully tug at my desires. Is it inevitable, then, that I’ll go for Satan’s efforts if he finds what I desire most?

Jesus’ example in Matthew 4 needs to be carefully considered. He was tempted by Satan three times in powerful ways, but He never gave in. What enabled Him to resist? Each time Jesus responded to the temptation with the same words: “It is written”, and then He would note what God had said (Matthew 4:4,7,10). By knowing what is right (according to God), Jesus knew when sin was being dangled in front of Him. He was completely determined to stay away from the devil’s bait.

My observations at grocery stores tell me that many people are tempted by Oreos cookies and other chocolate confections. The real danger comes when the bait we swallow is designed to rob us of our eternal life. Let us heed Peter’s advice to “be sober, be vigilant”.

Come to the light God offers!  Study His word, the Bible.  Worship Him in spirit and truth (John 4:24).  Get in touch with us if you’d like to discuss these ideas further.


Copyright, 2024, Timothy D. Hall. All scripture quotations, unless otherwise noted, are from the New King James Version (Copyright, 1990, Thomas Nelson, Inc.).

“LightGrams” is produced by the Central Church of Christ, 2722 Oakland Avenue, Johnson City, Tennessee, 37601, and is written by Tim Hall, minister. It is sent free of charge every Thursday to all who request it. To subscribe or to receive more information, write to “” (our E-mail address), to the U.S. mail address above, or call (423) 282-1571.

Permission to reproduce and/or use the messages for noncommercial purposes is freely granted provided the messages are not altered.