Simply the Bible Blog

Daily Devotion and Podcast

Genesis 4:8-24 “Cain Murders Abel”

“And the LORD said, ‘What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood is crying to me from the ground.’”

Genesis 4:10 (ESV)

It didn’t take long for sin to take root in the first family. Paradise was lost. Man now earned his bread by the sweat of his brow. There was conflict between the sexes. The woman desired her husband’s place, and he dominated her. There was even rivalry between brothers. When God accepted Abel’s offering, but not Cain’s, Cain was very angry. God intervened and told Cain that sin was crouching at his door and desired to have him. But rather than listening to God, Cain yielded to his hatred. What is hatred? It is wishing that someone else did not exist.

Cain called Abel to come out with him into the field, and then he attacked his brother and killed him. Perhaps Cain thought that no one saw. But later the LORD said to Cain, “Where is Abel your brother?”

“I don’t know,” he replied. “Am I my brother’s keeper?”

“What have you done?” God said. “The voice of your brother’s blood is crying to me from the ground!”

Cain did not count on Abel’s blood having a voice! But blood that has been violently shed cries out for justice. Murderers may escape the judgment of man, but they cannot escape the judgment of God.

When Jesus taught in the Sermon on the Mount, He was concerned with more than just the physical act of murder.

“You have heard that our ancestors were told, ‘You must not murder. If you commit murder, you are subject to judgment.’ But I say, if you are even angry with someone, you are subject to judgment! If you call someone an idiot, you are in danger of being brought before the court. And if you curse someone, you are in danger of the fires of hell.”

Matthew 5:21–22 (NLT)

We may think that we are off the hook because we have never murdered someone. But what is our attitude toward that other person? Are we holding onto anger? Does it erupt into unkind, spiteful, or vicious words? Then Jesus says we are in danger of judgment and maybe even the fires of hell! If we wish that someone else did not exist, then sin already has hold of us, and it won’t let go until it consumes us!

“For this is the message that you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. We should not be like Cain, who was of the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own deeds were evil and his brother’s righteous.”

1 John 3:11–12 (ESV)

We may feel that our anger is justified, and perhaps it is. But Paul warns us not to let the sun go down on our anger nor give an opportunity for the devil (Ephesians 4:26). If someone has offended you, and you can’t let it go, then deal with it today, or at least by tomorrow. Go to that person in a spirit of humility and explain what they did to hurt you. Settle matters quickly. This is the way of love. This is the way of Christ rather than Cain.

Listen to the complete podcast

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