• W. Austin Gardner

The Way of Cain



Genesis 4:1 And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the Lord. 2 And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. 3 And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord. 4 And 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: 5 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell. 6 And the Lord said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? 7 If 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. 8 And 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. 9 And the Lord said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother’s keeper? 10 And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother’s blood crieth unto me from the ground. 11 And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother’s blood from thy hand; 12 When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength; a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth. 13 And Cain said unto the Lord, My punishment is greater than I can bear. 14 Behold, 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. 15 And 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. 16 And Cain went out from the presence of the Lord, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden. 17 And 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. 18 And unto Enoch was born Irad: and Irad begat Mehujael: and Mehujael begat Methusael: and Methusael begat Lamech. 19 And Lamech took unto him two wives: the name of the one was Adah, and the name of the other Zillah. 20 And Adah bare Jabal: he was the father of such as dwell in tents, and of such as have cattle. 21 And his brother’s name was Jubal: he was the father of all such as handle the harp and organ. 22 And Zillah, she also bare Tubal-cain, an instructer of every artificer in brass and iron: and the sister of Tubal-cain was Naamah. 23 And 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. 24 If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, Truly Lamech seventy and sevenfold.

  1. God gave Eve a man child Genesis 4:1 And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the Lord.

  2. Eve had been promised a child by the Lord Genesis 3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

  3. Instead of dying God had forgiven them and given them temporary life with a promise Genesis 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

  4. Adam showed his faith in God by naming his wife Eve-life giver and mother of all living

  5. Eve would be the mother

  6. But not only mother but actually a mother to the deliverer, God coming in human flesh

  7. When Cain was born Eve thought she had already gotten the promise from the Lord, a man from the Lord Genesis 4:1 And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the Lord.

  8. The story is of man’s sin and God’s grace as He promises them a deliverer

  9. We see faith as they believe that God is doing just that

  10. The time of offerings or sacrifices came 3 And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord. 4 And 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: 5 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.

  11. Obvious that God has given them instruction about the offering

  12. Adam and Eve had been covered by skins which would show the death of an animal to cover their nakedness and shame

  13. Both brothers come at the same time with an offering

  14. The value of the offering wasn’t in the work that they had put into it

  15. The value of the offering would be the death of a substitute. Sin means death. Forgiveness is based on a substitutionary death

  16. The value of the offering wasn’t its beauty, Cain’s work, man’s opinion of the value of the offering

  17. Men today get offended. They say Cain did the best he could. He took his best and God wasn’t satisfied but that is the story of the Bible. God isn’t satisfied with your best but your realizing your best isn’t good enough

  18. Notice God’s tenderness even in the face of the wrong offering 5 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell. 6 And the Lord said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? 7 If 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.

  19. God questions Cain and lets Cain know that if he will but do right, his offering will be accepted 7 If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted?

  20. Cain had no right to be angry

  21. God offers Cain a second chance

  22. Notice what God did even when Cain was angry with him

  23. God saw him and paid attention to him

  24. It wasn’t God who was at fault but Cain. Even if Cain wanted to blame God He was patient with him

  25. Obviously, Cain knew what he was supposed to do and God reminds him of that 7 If 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.

  26. Notice that God rejects Cain’s offering because Cain comes in arrogance and disobedience. He knew better

  27. God warned Cain that sin was at the door and would take over if Cain chose to disobey

  28. Cain’s rebellion makes him a slave of sin and brings horrible consequences 8 And 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. 9 And the Lord said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother’s keeper?

  29. Cain sets the standard for the rebellious against God Jude 11 Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core.

  30. Cain didn’t have the faith to offer a sacrifice that was pleasing to God like Abel did Hebrews 11:4 By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.

  31. Cain hated Abel because of his evil works being compared to his brother’s righteous works so you should be surprised when the lost world does you the same way I John 3:12 Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous. 13 Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you.

  32. Cain’s judgment from the Lord 10 And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother’s blood crieth unto me from the ground. 11 And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother’s blood from thy hand; 12 When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength; a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth. 13 And Cain said unto the Lord, My punishment is greater than I can bear.

  33. This is the first time we see a person cursed in the Bible, remember the ground was cursed but not Adam and Eve 11 And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother’s blood from thy hand;

  34. The real curse is again the ground because the ground will no longer yield anything for Cain 12 When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength; a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth.

  35. Cain feels like his judgment is too harsh but it was really less than what God would always do later 13 And Cain said unto the Lord, My punishment is greater than I can bear. Genesis 9:6 Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.

  36. God, under Moses, will prescribe the death penalty for 18 different crimes

  37. Sin brings death

  38. Cain feels that his judgment is too harsh but makes no effort to repent, to apologize only complains.

  39. We make excuses and complain when the penalty for our sin comes calling

  40. Cain shows us the way sinners live 14 Behold, 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.

  41. Don’t recognize your sin

  42. Don’t accept responsibility

  43. Blame someone else

  44. Complain about not being treated fairly

  45. Feel sorry for yourself

  46. Even in all of this God shows more mercy 15 And 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.

  47. Many others begin to follow the way of Cain 16 And Cain went out from the presence of the Lord, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden. 17 And 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.

  48. Cain has lost his roots, cut off from his family

  49. He leaves in the presence of God to make his life

  50. He builds a city for the community but will never find it because sin separates, cuts off intimacy, makes men wear masks, takes away transparency

  51. Cain goes on without God and raises a family without God

  52. But he puts the name of God into his kid’s names Mehujael and Methusael

  53. He still has a form of godliness though he denies the power thereof

  54. His son doesn’t put the name of God in his children’s names

  55. Men are very talented and intelligent, not cavemen like you might have heard 21 And his brother’s name was Jubal: he was the father of all such as handle the harp and organ. 22 And Zillah, she also bare Tubal-cain, an instructer of every artificer in brass and iron: and the sister of Tubal-cain was Naamah.

  56. Cain’s children boast in their sin, even competition about sin 23 And 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. 24 If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, Truly Lamech seventy and sevenfold.

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