SUBJ: The beginning of the
struggle of good and evil as it is seen in the murder of Abel because of
jealousy and in total rebellion against the Lord.
AIM: That we might ever be
reminded that “by one man sin entered into the world and death passed
upon all” and that sin and death has become progressively worse and thus
be driven to Christ.
INTR: The effects of the entrance
of sin into the world are quickly presented to us in scripture and that
which exists in the heart is soon manifested in action against God and
all that He approves.
1. Cain and Abel have become symbols of this
conflict, but we would be reminded that they were real people who have
exemplified the stark distinctions in fallen man and the righteousness
2. We must recognize that operations of evil is first and
foremost directed against God and especially against Christ Jesus our
3. Again, as we look to this account we will try to avoid the
oversimplistic storybook type of narration and rather seek to see the
purpose of the Holy Spirit in preserving these things to us millennia
THESIS: The challenge of
evil manifests the desire of the father of lies is seeking to establish
dominance over the things of God and ultimately to wrest the power from
God. He will rule in righteousness.
I. The birth of two sons (vv.
1. The point in time of the first conception is not mentioned
and may have occurred years from the fall. What is significant is that
Even declared that she had gotten a man from the Lord and may have been
remembering the prophesy about the seed of the woman.
expectation may have been tied to the promise. It is said that every
Jewish woman wanted a son in hope that he might be that promised
2) Nothing beyond what we know to be normal happened as to
the conception and birth and
3) What we do know is that the DNA would
have been identical and Adam’s dying body was passed on and so was his
2. Several questions arrive here (we will not spend
much time on speculation) such as no conception being mentioned with the
birth of Abel (they may have been twins) and some have supposed the
birth of a twin sister with each of them.
3. What we do know is that
sin made its first passage from Adam on into the world.
4. Of note
here is that Adam was a farmer and Cain followed him in that while Abel
was a shepherd.
II. A question of sacrifice (vv. 3-7)
immediate distinction is made in that although Cain was the eldest, the
sacrifice of Abel is mentioned first, and we learn that it was faith
from Hebrews 11:4.
2. It seems evident that they had both been taught
the form of worship and the proper manner of sacrifice before the Lord.
1) They would have heard of the promise of the seed of the woman and
what He would do and
2) They would have surely connected the thought
of sacrifice with the Lord’s provision.
3) The offering of a blood
sacrifice as the proper manner and the fat belonged to the Lord.
3. The problem with the offering of Cain was
1) It has been suggested by some that it may not have been
what he offered so much as how he offered it. He could have obtained a
2) Jealousy seems to have entered here in that Cain
was the eldest and the heir to the birthright, but in that his sacrifice
was not accepted he may have feared the loss of status.
3) It may
have been at this point that he perceived Abel as a threat.
Lord’s response was doing well – implying obedience and compliance or
5) Sin was at the door (of conscience and heart) to place him into
servitude. While this is the consensus as to the meaning here, many
other thoughts have been suggested that do not seem to fit what
6) The changed in countenance was a manifestation of his
challenge to the authority of God and of defensiveness in contending to
so as he would. Jude called it the way of Cain.
7) He would take it
out on his brother.
III. The first murder (vv. 8-13; 14-17)
The cruelty of jealousy determines that it cannot leave it at rejecting
something – it must try to assert dominance. It was more than just
killing hid brother of whom he was jealous, it was to take away the one
whom God approved.
2. It may have been that he thought that Abel was
the seed that would crush the serpent.
3. Satan demands dominance and
was launching an attack against all who he thought might be the promised
4. The absence of repentance is notable. (Could Cain have been
5. The blood of Abel spoke condemnation and God heard
it. In Hebrews 12 we learn of the blood of Christ that speaks better
things than that of Abel. It speaks forgiveness which Abel had by faith
6. The curse was expanded and intensified for Cain and he
was preserved from immediate death and left to suffer in the misery that
sin had brought upon him.
7. WE rejoice that Abel stands at the head
of a long line of faithful saints who have looked the merciful provision
of God in sending His own Lamb into the world that “whosoever believeth
in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.