Genesis 4

Cain and Abel – sibling rivalry from the beginning

4:3-5 Both bring an offering to God, but Abel’s is more acceptable. Why? The Bible cites that Abel brought from among the firstborn, so the first fruits. The best of what he could offer instead of just any old offering. And this pleased God.

4:5-7 Harsh but true words to Cain. His offering didn’t measure up so he throws a tantrum. Yeah, I do the same. God basically asks him why all the pouting because it was his own decisions that caused his offering to not be acceptable. Ouch! God then goes on to say that if he didn’t do his best then it was only because of sin and that he needed to diligently be on guard because sin was out to get him.

“If you do well, won’t you be accepted? And if you don’t do well, sin is lying in wait for you, ready to pounce; it’s out to get you, you’ve got to master it.” (4:7)

Sinning is a choice. It is always waiting to trap us, but we can master it, we can choose to do what we know is right.

4:8 Whoa Cain, really? All over some cuts of meat? All because your brother did what was right in God’s eyes, you go out and kill him??

4:9 Cain sounds like a bratty teenager that needs to be set straight. “What am I his babysitter?” or in some versions “Am I my brother’s keeper?”

4:10 “The voice of your brothers blood is calling to me from the ground” WHOA! That’s kind of a crazy thing to me, blood calling to God from the ground. Injustice will not go unnoticed by God.

4:11 Cain will only receive curses from the ground… sounds eerily like Adam’s curse.

4:15 Why did God mark Cain so that no one would kill him? Was it so that as he wandered the earth he would be reminded of what he did so he couldn’t “escape” his punishment? What kind of mark was it? was it some kind of visible mark?

4:16 Cain leaves the presence of God to wander in no man’s land. What if he had repented? He doesn’t even seem sorry he did it and in v. 11 is upset that the punishment is too great.

4:23-24 What are these verses about? 1) Lamech had two wives. Was he the first to have multiple wives? 2) he killed some guy for attacking him, okay but why the “If Cain is avenged seven times, for Lamech it’s seventy-seven” Eh? Can he make that pronouncement? And why? It seems he at least had some justification of being attacked, Cain was just upset.

4:26 Seth has a son named Enosh and “That’s when men and women began praying and worshiping in the name of God.” What caused this sudden turn around? How long does that mean it was before people began praying and worshiping God?