Sunday 20 September, 2015

Genesis 4:8-16

8 Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.” So they went out. There Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him. 9 Then the Lord said to Cain, “Where is your brother Abel?” “I don’t know,” Cain replied. “Am I supposed to take care of my brother?” 10 The Lord said, “What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood is crying out to me from the ground. 11 So I am putting a curse on you. I am driving you away from this ground. It has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand. 12 When you farm the land, it will not produce its crops for you anymore. You will be a restless person who wanders around on the earth.” 13 Cain said to the Lord, “You are punishing me more than I can take. 14 Today you are driving me away from the land. I will be hidden from you. I’ll be a restless person who wanders around on the earth. Anyone who finds me will kill me.” 15 But the Lord said to him, “No. Anyone who kills you will be paid back seven times.” The Lord put a mark on Cain. Then anyone who found him wouldn’t kill him. 16 So Cain went away from the Lord. He lived in the land of Nod. It was east of Eden.

I see two distinct results from Cain’s sin. His identity is forever affected, and his access to the presence of God rescinded. He is forever now a “restless wanderer” and he is “hidden” from the presence of God. His fate is hard to bear for him. Sins sentence upon Cain’s life is terrible. I wonder how much of this can be in principle applied to the effect of sin upon us all?

I am given fresh awareness that sin affects my identity, and in a very harsh and destructive way. Sin makes restless wanderer’s of us all. Sin also affects my intimacy with God – sin affects my sense of His presence. It’s so true of my experience that when I know the path of sin has been my path of choice, immediate feelings of separation from the Almighty descend upon me. And finally, I am made aware that sins sentence is terribly harsh. Given the deceitfulness of sin, it is helpful to have such stark passages as this one to remind me that in no way is sin my friend. Sin is a harsh and destructive foe. I must set myself up against my sin tendencies, and protect myself against my sin temptations. I do not want to entertain, nor invite into my life, that which makes me a restless, Godless, and overwhelmed lonely soul.

Lord, I thank you that such stories as Cain’s here are given to us as warning to us. I am warned to keep vigilant regarding temptation and sin-weakness in my life. Sin is a vile master, and a foe. Lord, grant me Your never failing grace for the fight. I thank you that in Jesus I am no longer under sins tyranny, but Graces regal rule. Amen.

Written by Ps. Rob Waugh

1 (reply)
  1. Linda Quinn says:

    Thanks Rob – it is a sobering warning! In stark contrast to restlessness for Cain here, is the passage in Matthew 11:28 where Jesus calls us to Himself to FIND rest. Sin robs us – but Jesus restores us. Sin takes life from us but Jesus gave His life for us so we could have life! Lord help me choose to follow you today – accepting the forgiveness and freedom You bring.

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