Close this search box.

St. Patrick Cast Serpents into the Sea

Every March 17th, we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a feast of Irish cuisine and much drinking. We are advised to wear green under threat of being pinched (This was an act of solidarity for the Irish Rebellion in 1798), and shamrocks patterned on clothes or jewelry becomes a necessity. While many all over the world celebrate with revelry, it is a holiday designed to commemorate the famous patron saint of Ireland (born in Roman Britain not Ireland) and his great feats he had accomplished with God.


Like most things however, this honorable day was hijacked and victim to worldly customs. Paul addressed the Romans in Romans 13:12-14–” The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.”


This holiday is a tribute to Christianity and celebrates the life of a Christian believer that even though his father was Calpurnius; a deacon in the early Christian church, he did not always believe. In fact, being captured by Irish pirates at age 16 and forced to serve as a shepherd for 6 years, that was what led to him converting, and although he managed to escape as the “scales” were removed from his eyes. It was not long before the French captured him and there in France, he learned of the monasticism concept. This idea embraces “monkhood” and abstaining from worldly views in devotion of spiritual endeavors and growth.


Patricius (As he was well known) had a dream that he was to be an apostle and bring Christianity to the mostly pagan country of Ireland, and indeed he did. The “snakes” St. Patrick was said to have cast out of Ireland was a metaphor used for describing the pagan/druid people. Although, it has also been theorized that the Naasenes were also included as “snakes;” a Gnostic cult that used the serpent described in the book of Genesis for their worship, specifically the passage about Eve in the Garden of Eden being deceived by the serpent which was Satan. St. Patrick was deemed a zealot while he dealt fairly and justly with the non-believers, but while some loved him, many more hated him.


He used “power evangelism” to reach the people of Ireland, performing baptisms and through working miracles such as raising the dead (33 men to be exact as recorded in his hagiography) praying for the Lord’s supply and being provided for and for others. The Irish heathens and believers alike would bear witness to these miraculous works and be changed. There is also speculation that the involvement of the Shamrock was from the saint using it as a symbol to teach the “trinity” or “Godhead” as described in 1 John 5:7-8–” For there are three that bear witness in heaven: The Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness on earth: the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree as one.”


While it is NOT officially historically known beyond legend, this lesson was said to be easy for the Irish to accept, as they already held the number three in high regard in their belief system. The Celtic culture gave spiritual value to numbers like we do in Hebrew numerology, but their views were contrary to Christianity and “3” could have represented the 3 realms (land, sea, and sky,) their concept of gods, un-gods, and ancestors, three points of time (past, present, and future,) etc.


During his lifetime, Patricius helped establish over 300 churches across Ireland, giving way to conversions to Christianity (especially success in the sons of kings being taught and converted,) an increase in fellowship, ordaining new priests to grow his ministry, and leading women into nunhood. The saint accomplished so much, and although he originally doubted his capacity and skill to lead and teach others, God brought a whirlwind of change with his obedience to the Lord. As God once told the major prophet Jeremiah in Jeremiah 1:7-8–” But the Lord said to me: ‘Do not say ‘I am a youth’, For you shall go to all whom I send you, And whatever I command you, you shall speak. Do not be afraid of their faces, For I am with you to deliver you,’ says the Lord.”


From this moment forward we should view St. Patrick’s Day as a beautiful day that glorifies God, and edifies all believers, encouraging them to do as this brave Christian once did. He was a faithful disciple and gained much success in his contribution of spreading Christianity. I believe the “voice of God” was speaking through this willing servant and carried much influence. At first, he was not heard or accepted by any means on the mainland so he retreated to some smaller islands nearby and it was there he evangelized and gained followers, and then returned with more witnesses that could aid in teaching Christianity. Over years of time, Biblical principles were taught, and the Living Word was digging up heathen roots and shining a light all over a broken country. Cheers to a bold man that chose to listen to the voice of truth over man’s traditions and cast the snakes into the sea!



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.