Cain and Abel
Adam lay with his wife Eve, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Cain. She said, “With the help of the Lord I have brought forth a man.” Later she gave birth to his brother Abel.
Now Abel kept flocks, and Cain worked the soil. In the course of time Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil as an offering to the Lord. But Abel brought fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock. The Lord looked with favor on Abel and his offering, but on Cain and his offering he did not look with favor. So Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast.
Then the Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it.”
Now Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.” And while they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.
Then the Lord said to Cain, “Where is your brother Abel?”
“I don’t know,” he replied. “Am I my brother’s keeper?”
The Lord said, “What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground. Now you are under a curse and driven from the ground, which opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand. When you work the ground, it will no longer yield its crops for you. You will be a restless wanderer on the earth.”
Cain said to the Lord, “My punishment is more than I can bear. Today you are driving me from the land, and I will be hidden from your presence; I will be a restless wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.”
But the Lord said to him, “Not so; if anyone kills Cain, he will suffer vengeance seven times over.” Then the Lord put a mark on Cain so that no one who found him would kill him. So Cain went out from the Lord’s presence and lived in the land of Nod, east of Eden.
It’s interesting to me that the Lord said to Cain, “If you do what is right, will you not be accepted?” In other words, Abel gave the best portions of his offering while Cain just gave ‘some.’ Cain did not attempt to honor the Lord with his gift. He just threw something into the offering plate as it went by just because he knew he was supposed give something. But from the Lord’s response, we know that Cain knew what was right. He just did not want to do what was right. He wanted to do what he wanted to do and he did not want to be held accountable for the wrong he had done.
Isn’t is something how we can do things that we know are wrong, but we still get angry if someone calls us out. There is another word for this. It’s PRIDE. Even though we know that we are wrong, we do not want to apologize. We do not want to make things right. And if anyone expects or suggests that we should have handled things differently, our anger flies like arrows from a bow.
God opposes the proud (James 4:6). When we are wrong, we must find the humility to admit it. If we don’t humble ourselves, we set ourselves up as an opponent to God. Because the Lord is the source of all wisdom, and opponents do not have the privilege of His resources, we lose all wisdom in moments of anger. We do things that do not even make sense; things that will only bring regret later.
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My dear brothers, take note of this:Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.