Cain and Abel
I seem to be intrigued by this passage this morning. Adam and Eve had a child, Cain. Later on, they had another; Abel. When they grew up, Abel became a shepherd while Cain cultivated the ground. Look closely at this verse! The 1st born Cain worked the soil, and his little brother became a shepherd.
Remember in the last chapter, Genesis 3, what part of that curse was? Adam used to work the soil and it was great. But now, it would become hard. It would produce thorns and thistles and be a major pain! But little brother was living it up. Genesis 1:28 says, "Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it. Reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, and all the animals that scurry along the ground." So Abel seems to be lined up with man's original purpose to have dominion over life because he kept flocks, and Cain seems to be getting the short end of the stick.
It is quite possible that Cain is a little envious of his little brother.
"When it was time for the harvest, Cain presented some of his crops as a gift to the Lord. Abel also brought a gift - the best portions of the firstborn lambs from his flock. The Lord accepted Abel and his gift. But he did not accept Cain and his gift" (Genesis 4:2-5).
Hebrews 11:6 says, "It is impossible to please God without faith." I believe that Abel went out of his way to please God and his offering came genuinely from his heart. His actions were righteous. Cain's on the other hand - E.V.I.L. 1 John 3:12 says, "We must not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and killed his brother. And why did he kill him? Because Cain had been doing what was evil, and his brother had been doing what was righteous."
Cain could have tried to make it right with God, but his response showed his lack of faith. He became very angry, sad, and depressed.
Abel's sacrifice was a blood sacrifice. I know this. Cain's was not. But I do believe that has nothing to do with the point being casted here! Proverbs 21:27 says, "The sacrifice of an evil person is detestable, especially when it is offered with wrong motives."
God gave him a chance to fix things. God gave Cain simple advice that was this - It was that if Cain would please God by doing what is right, all would be well. But if not, sin would be ready to overcome him. Cain was filled with envy and he could have overcome it by doing what was right, but instead he sat and let it burn and grow and his anger got stronger and stronger until he acted on it.
He killed his brother.
God gave him a chance and tried to talk him out of his sin. The devil talked Eve in to her sin, and God tried to talk Cain out of his.He didn’t listen, so here come the consequences - his punishment was to be out of the presence of God! And Cain says to God, "That is too much. That is too severe God. You have banished me from the land and from your presence; you have made me a homeless wanderer. Anyone who finds me will kill me."
God still shows mercy to him and promises him that he will mark him in some way that no one will attempt to kill him or they shall be cursed.
So Cain is on his way. He left the presence of the Lord and settled in the land of Nod, east of Eden. But we see that he yet once again defiles God. He was told he would be a wanderer but yet settled in a city. This is just the very beginning of a rebellious generation to come!
Reading this story this morning, I am reminded of how sinful I am. No matter the amount of offerings I bring to God, it will achieve nothing if I have not faith! Abel's faith is what made him righteous and it was accepted by God.
God was very pleased with Jesus Christ's sacrifice and offering on the cross for our sins and it is by our faith in Him that we are righteous before God. No other way.
Be Encouraged, Chris