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Thought for the Day by Phil Moon (Vicar)
4 Adam made love to 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.’ 2 Later she gave birth to his brother Abel.
Now Abel kept flocks, and Cain worked the soil. 3 In the course of time Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil as an offering to the Lord. 4 But Abel also brought an offering – fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock. The Lord looked with favour on Abel and his offering, 5 but on Cain and his offering he did not look with favour. So Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast.
6 Then the Lord said to Cain, ‘Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? 7 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 rule over it.’
8 Now Cain said to his brother Abel, ‘Let’s go out to the field.’ While they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.
9 Then the Lord said to Cain, ‘Where is your brother Abel?’
‘I don’t know,’ he replied. ‘Am I my brother’s keeper?’
10 The Lord said, ‘What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground. 11 Now you are under a curse and driven from the ground, which opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand. 12 When you work the ground, it will no longer yield its crops for you. You will be a restless wanderer on the earth.’
So Bad So Soon
You may, like me, have read this in your morning bible reading on Wednesday.
Adam’s oldest son kills his own brother. A deliberate, planned, murder. Cain and Abel.
A whole load of answers to that one. Life was all about himself. God had rejected his offering (v5) and Cain was furious. But his offering wasn’t the best he could have done (unlike his brother’s). He had done wrong and he wouldn’t admit it. He was at the centre of his own universe; the epitome of sin. And his resentment and jealousy ended up shedding his own brother’s blood and taking his own brother’s life. So soon after the Fall. It’s terrible; and it’s just like us, because our hearts are just the same as Cain’s.
Next Friday is about blood too. Shed blood. Jesus’ blood. Shed not out of resentment and fury, but shed out of love, sheer love. For you and me. So that our Cain-like hearts may be healed and we may have a new life. Next Friday is so important that it’s worth preparing for, and that’s why we have services each evening during the week before Easter, called ‘Holy Week’ in some places. Our little series starts on Sunday (morning and evening) and we’re doing to work our way through the ‘Servants Songs’ in Isaiah. We’re going to think about the Suffering Servant, shedding his blood for us, and we’re going to prepare for Good Friday, and the glories of Easter Sunday.
Prepare well. We’re heading for a wonderful weekend.
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