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To Christians the classic Snakes and Ladders game seems to be based on Old Testament ideas around sin and God’s mercy. It makes us think of Jacob’s angel-laden ladder to the heavens in the Old, and satan disguised as a snake who sparked the Fall of Adam and Eve. But it’s actually an ancient Indian game based on Hindu mythology. The game board was dominated by snakes that sent wrong-doers down to rebirth in a lower form of life. When the game was introduced to England in the late 1800s some of the content was changed to reflect the values there. The number of ladders was increased to equal the number of snakes to illustrate that with every sin, there is an opportunity to repent and choose redemption!

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Snakes & Ladders

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Francine Pirola

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