Wednesday, June 27, 2012


One last thought on "the fall":  man succumbed to temptation and sinned.  It is no sin to be tempted.  But sin is committed when we yield to the temptation.  Temptation will always be there.  God allows temptation, but He never causes it.  James 1 reminds us of that.
Severe consequences follow when we sin.  Man was cast out of the garden.  Sin had separated man from the close fellowship with God.  Man would henceforth labor and toil and life would be harder.  Note that the Garden of Eden and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil were mentioned in the 2nd chapter of Genesis and the last chapter in Revelation, where it states that they will be restored.

.Chapter 4  -  Cain and Abel

One thing we must get out of the way first.  I don't have any concrete answers, but just a few thoughts.  As you read Chapter 4, you become aware that there seems to be many people on the earth, yet not too many decades have passed.  Remember what I said about the writers being limited as they conveyed on paper the words and thoughts of God.  Although we'll comment more on this when we get to the flood, I am still not convinced that God's creation of "Man" was limited to Adam and Eve.  His mentioning of man and mankind as opposed to a single man makes me think.  Certainly no believer limits God's ability to create as many humans as He wanted to.  I'm not trying to make this difficult, but we're talking about ALL CREATION here.  How can everything be contained in 3 chapters of 1 book?  We must have very forgiving minds and hearts if some facts and events are ommitted.  Like I stated in an earlier post, I believe the Bible contains everything we NEED to know.

There is so much in this short chapter.  The Scripture tells about an array of sins ranging from petty jealousy to premeditated murder, constantly teaching us about the "personality and character" of God.
Adam and Eve had 2 sons:  Cain first, then Abel.  Cain was a farmer and Abel was a shepherd.  (Just like the work God assigned man)  Cain and Able brought offerings.  (Levitican Law not established yet.  I am to assume that God made these mandates known to Adam and Eve)  In verse 3, Cain brought as an offering "some of the fruits of the soil".  vs 4:  Abel brought "fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock"  God was pleased with Abel's offering, but not with Cain's.  I have a few thoughts as to why:  Cain's attitude may have been begrudging about giving anything to anybody including God.  Its easy not to like Cain much.  He reminds me of Esau.  Also, the best from Cain's crops would be the seed stock, or the very plumpest of the fruits and vegitables. It was clear that Abel offered the best.  God honors the "first born" as we'll see very clearly in the books to come.  Cain did not approach God and asked how he could do better or even why God was displease.  Instead, Cain got angry.  Very childish.  Vs 6 God said if you do what is right, you will be accepted, which tells me that Cain was rejected more than his offering was.  vs 7:  "sin is crouching at your door", dangerously close.  like a snake coiled up, ready to strike.  I see God here as tring to lead Cain to repentance, but remember God gives us a free heart to love Him and fellowship with Him.  Unfortunately this free heart can choose to go the other way.  So Cain took Abel out in the fields and killed him.  Jealousy had turned to murder.  Then God finds Cain and asked where Abel was.  "I don't know" (lie)  Am I my brother's keeper (smartmouthing God)  Punishment was swift and just.  Punishment was two-fold:  banished from his homeland, living the life of a fugitive, and the land would no longer be generous for Cain as it had been (I still say he took for granted how bountiful his crops were and was stingy with his offering to God.  just a thought)  He was banished to the land of Nod.  Doesn't tell exactly where Nod is, but the Hebrew of Nod is "wandering"  reminds me of the wilderness Moses and Aaron got stuck in.  One last thought about Cain.  This is from a 61 year old Christian and student of human nature.  A bad relationship with man causes a bad relationship with God.  A bad relaionship with God causes a bad relationship with man.  I've seen it time and time again.  Can a person be right with God and wrong with mankind at the same time?  Possible I suppose, but I doubt it.
As you finsh reading chapter 5, you'll see a lot of lineage (Old Testiment is big on lineage.  Maticulous records were kept)  But notice Cain's bloodline.  Gets to Lamech.  Vss 23, 24 He admits to his wife that he killed a man.  Appears out of anger.  Just like his great grandfather.
But this chapter ends on a wonderful note.  Check out vss 25,26.  God allowed Adam and Eve to have another son.  He was named Seth.  He was to replace Abel.  Seth also had a son he named Enos.  vs 26b  -  "at that time people began to call on the name of the Lord".  Think about that:  Cain descendants became murderers and the like.  Seth's descendant became Godly people.  Seth's heart was right, but we know that he must have put forth effort to teach and set an example for his family every day.

1 comment:

  1. We have had several discussions on temptation in our men's group. We've discussed this same principal that temptation itself is not sin and many people spend a lot of their lives feeling defeated and guilty when it comes to temptation.

    Thats an interesting thought that God not only created Adam and Eve, but others as well. I guess that means that we all did not come from the same bloodline, possibly?