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When a Child Second Guesses Parents

The other day a thought popped into my mind about a hypothetical conversation that may have occurred as Abel and Cain came home for dinner one night. After tilling rock hard ground in desert like conditions, Cain sees the Garden of Eden over in the distance, lush green beyond the sandy soil. Cain sarcastically asks his parents, “can you go over why you two were kicked out of the Garden of Eden?” Adam and Eve look at each other in silence, before Eve starts to share her accounts of that fateful day.

For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing the difference between good and evil and blessing and calamity. And when the woman saw that the tree was good (suitable, pleasant) for food and that it was delightful to look at, and a tree to be desired in order to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate; and she gave some also to her husband, and he ate, Genesis 3:5-6.

As Adam takes a big bite, chewing feverishly, a nervous laughter prompts Eve to set the scene. Eve was memorized by the Tree of Knowledge, unable to resist taking a second glance. The more Eve stared, the low bearing fruit got her attention, eliciting lust within her heart for this tree’s fruit. Cain immediately interrupts, “you’re telling me our family got kicked out of Eden over two figs?” Eve replies, “but it was so good.”

And Adam knew Eve as his wife, and she became pregnant and bore Cain; and she said, I have gotten and gained a man with the help of the Lord. And [next] she gave birth to his brother Abel. Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. And in the course of time Cain brought to the Lord an offering of the fruit of the ground. And Abel brought of the firstborn of his flock and of the fat portions. And the Lord had respect and regard for Abel and for his offering, Genesis 4:1-4.

Hindsight is always twenty/twenty as anyone can play Monday morning quarterback. While Cain has a right to be disappointed by his parents, he should have been more concerned about getting his own life under control rather than pointing the finger at someone else. Jesus addresses this in his Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 7:1-5. There is plenty of time for personal reflection, especially after making poor choices in life. Yet, like the Michael W. Smith classic song, we’re all Living and Learning.

by Jay Mankus

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