1And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD. 2And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. 3And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD. 4And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering:5But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell. 6And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? 7If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him. 8And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.
9And the LORD said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother's keeper? 10And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground. 11And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother's blood from thy hand; 12When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength; a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth.13And Cain said unto the LORD, My punishment is greater than I can bear. 14Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the earth; and from thy face shall I be hid; and I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth; and it shall come to pass, that every one that findeth me shall slay me. 15And the LORD said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And the LORD set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him.
16And Cain went out from the presence of the LORD, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden.
17And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Enoch: and he builded a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch. 18And unto Enoch was born Irad: and Irad begat Mehujael: and Mehujael begat Methusael: and Methusael begat Lamech. 19And Lamech took unto him two wives: the name of the one was Adah, and the name of the other Zillah. 20And Adah bare Jabal: he was the father of such as dwell in tents, and of such as havecattle. 21And his brother's name was Jubal: he was the father of all such as handle the harp and organ. 22And Zillah, she also bare Tubalcain, an instructer of every artificer in brass and iron: and the sister of Tubalcain was Naamah.
23And Lamech said unto his wives, Adah and Zillah, Hear my voice; ye wives of Lamech, hearken unto my speech: for I have slain a man to my wounding, and a young man to my hurt.
24If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, truly Lamech seventy and sevenfold.
25And Adam knew his wife again; and she bare a son, and called his name Seth: For God, said she, hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew. 26And to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enos: then began men to call upon the name of the LORD.
So now we look at the life of Adam and Eve after they leave the Garden of Eden.
1And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD.
The word knew here refers to sexual activity. Completely legal as Eve was his wife, so it was right and proper that he should have intercourse with her!
So Eve bares a son, and called his name Cain, which means a man from The Lord. It was a great mercy that the Lord gave Adam and Eve a son. Even though mankind is utterly depraved and sinful, yet The Lord allows our race to continue, and gives us children. But the human race will not continue forever, let that be noted!
2And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.
Again Eve has another baby at a later date, and she calls his name Abel. It doesn’t seem certain of the origin of Abel’s name, but some have suggested “herdsman”.
So Abel takes of the job looking after sheep, and his brother Cain takes up the job as a gardener. Both jobs are right and proper for a man to occupy himself with!
3And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD.
Presumably, Adam had encouraged both his sons to give offerings unto God, probably a peace offering asking for forgiveness for Adam and Eve’s sin in taking of the fruit, which sin is passed on through the generations. So Adam is trying here to teach his sons not to make the same mistakes he himself had made!
4And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering:
In the same way, Abel brought his offering. And God accepted Abel’s offering.
5But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.
Yet God did not accept the offering of Cain.
It is not stated in this book what the reason of Abel being given more preference than Cain was, but Hebrews 11 gives us an indication that the difference might have been simply that Abel offered his sacrifice in faith while Cain did not have faith but rather, did it as more of a ritual.
It’s kind of like prayers in a way. God will only respect your prayer if it is done in faith. I sometimes worry about how we pray just before the meal, when we say the so called ‘grace’. Do we just say the words of a well known prayer, or do we truly and faithfully thank God for His great mercy in allowing us to eat and to live yet another day? Prayer is no prayer without faith.
6And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen?
Wroth means “angry”.
“Countenance Fallen” is probably a reference to mild depression, where people become so obsessed about something that has gone wrong, instead of focusing on the good points.
Cain was angry at God. And that is a very dangerous state to be in! An enemy of God will never be able to stand.
Perhaps it’s understandable, Cain is trying to do the right thing by giving an offering to the Lord, and yet God would not hear. God often does that to us, we pray sometimes and God doesn’t seem to listen, or He brings more adversity upon us.
Jeremiah said: 8Also when I cry and shout, he shutteth out my prayer. (Lamentations 3:8)
7If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.
This verse gives us an indication that Cain was very sinful. Sin lieth at the door, it’s evident that the first thing that you see when you see a sinner, typified here as a house, that the first thing you see is sin. You might try and white wash the whole house, yet if you open the door, there lies sin.
The Bible is full of parables. Parables help you see the text in a slightly different way, and can often be a way of explaining the meaning of a text in a simpler form.
8And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.
Cain and Abel were talking alone in the field. Things began to get really heated as they began talking about God, and Abel started telling Cain that if he wanted God to accept him, he would need to have a little more faith. Then Cain gets really angry at his little brother who thinks he all so much better than he is, and in the heat of the moment Cain picks up a huge rock and hurls it at Abel, and Abel falls to the ground. Cain goes over feeling a bit remorseful and shakes his little brother to get him up, but Abel is dead as a doornail. Cain did not go out with the intention to kill his brother, it just happened. It’s like a lot of the sins we do, we don’t get up in the morning and think... “I’ll do this that and the other sin today”, no rather we think, we’ll do only good things and yet at the end of the day, we have done some terrible things.
Well that’s all for now, we will see the resolution to this great problem in our next session.
Lord bless His word!