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Tag Archives: Cain and Abel

Envy

When an American talks about the first family, they are usually referring the president and their family.  However, the Bible also has a first family.  Adam and Eve gave birth to Cain and Abel.  Everything was perfect until Adam and Eve broke God’s only rule.  Following their expulsion from the Garden of Eden, a curse was unleashed.  Subsequently, the human flesh was inflected with envy.

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,” Genesis 4:7.

When life as a farmer hit a snag, Cain struggled to provide for his family.  This lack of production influenced Cain to cut back on his first fruit offering.  In the meantime, his kid brother Abel decided to become a shepherd.  Based upon the early portion of chapter 4, Abel gave the first portion of his profits to the Lord.  This offering pleased God, but conceived envy within the heart of Cain.  This is the beginning of how envy rots the bones.

A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones, Proverbs 14:30.

Envy is like a double edged sword.  On one side envy is self-seeking, wishing you possessed what others have.  All the while, this same sinful nature is causing individuals to disconnect from God.  Unless this desire is cut off, envy will continue to cut to heart, poison souls and rot human bones.  For those of you caught up by this spiritual disease, start by implementing the words of Colossians 3:4-7.  From here, confess, pray and enter into accountability relationships to rid yourself of any ill-effects of this addictive nature.

by Jay Mankus

 

 

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A God Without Discrimination

Whenever two or more individuals attempt to co-exist, there will always be conflict, disagreements and differences in opinions.  Whether you examine relationships like Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel or Samson and Delilah, blame, jealousy and manipulation are bound to occur.  Unfortunately, the fallen nature of mankind usually leads to some sort of discrimination.

God, who knows the heart, showed that he accepted them by giving the Holy Spirit to them, just as he did to us, Acts 15:8. 

In the history of America, considered one of the greatest countries in modern times, it too possesses sins against humanity.  A Civil War divided slave owners from the north who saw a day when slaves would be free.  For years woman weren’t given the opportunity to vote and youth were discarded like trash prior to child labor laws.  Each century has brought a new dilemma, with discrimination of some sort always at the forefront.

He did not discriminate between us and them, for he purified their hearts by faith, Acts 15:9.

During the middle of the first century as the church grew in size, cultural tensions arose to the surface.  Jewish Christians expected new converts to follow in the practices of Judaism.  Meanwhile, sects like the Judaizers began to add circumcision as a requirement to salvation.  This religious discrimination brought on a whole new sort of troubles.  Yet, as the apostles came together to discuss this matter, one thing was for certain.  Early Christians followed a God who did not discriminate, reuniting individuals through faith.

by Jay Mankus

The Relationship between Emotions and Worship

Mood swings are common, swayed by victories or defeat throughout life.  Yet, the pulse of emotions can be directly tied to your degree of worship.  Huh?  Are you sure about that?  Well, after examining the lives of Cain and Abel, God honors those whose heart is in the right place.  However, anyone who holds back, offering a lame attempt at worship will not receive what they desire.

And Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat portions.  And the LORD had regard for Abel and his offering, but for Cain and his offering he had no regard. So Cain was very angry, and his face fell. – Genesis 4:4-5

Despite one’s shortcomings in life, God can see right through the fake, phony and superficial.  While the world places an emphasis on appearance, height or stature, the Lord looks at the heart of mankind, 1 Samuel 16:7.  Known as the well spring of life, Proverbs 4:23, this organ regulates the human body.  Thus, the greater an individual pours out their soul in worship, the more likely God will be inclined to accept and bless their gifts.

But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.” – 1 Samuel 16:7

Those who sense God’s favor and or presence tend to control their emotions.  Meanwhile, anyone who feels rejected by God may turn sour, opening the door for anger to influence their behavior.  Depressed and jealous, Cain sought revenge instead of repentance.  Losing control of his emotions, Cain did the unthinkable, killing his baby brother.  Before you do something you might regret, take your spiritual pulse by evaluating your commitment to worship.  God willing, one day you will develop a Matthew 6:33 mentality, by placing your trust in an invisible God who continues to provide daily bread.

by Jay Mankus

 

What Causes Someone to Pull the Trigger?

In light of the recent murder of Kasandra M. Perkins and subsequent suicide of Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher, its important to learn from this tragedy.  If our culture continues to make the same mishaps without gathering information from history, we won’t survive.  Thus, it is vital to begin to grasp what causes someone who appears normal to pull the trigger.

To uncover this mystery, we must go back 8,000 years to study the first murder ever recorded.  Cain was a farmer, like his father Adam, a difficult occupation due to the curse placed on the ground by God in Genesis 3:17-19.  Taking this into account, Abel, Cain’s younger brother, decides he doesn’t want to stay in the family business, opting to pursue a career as a shepherd.  Not dependent on the soil, Abel thrives, moving his sheep from field to field once the are grasslands depleted.  This success leads Abel to easily give his first fruits back to God while older brother Cain struggles to make ends meat.  These events create a spirit of jealousy within Cain’s heart, frustrated by blessings Abel receives, Genesis 4:4-7.

Now that we have a motive for murder, one must delve into the words of Jesus, investigating the Sermon on the Mount to probe for more clues why someone might pull the trigger.  In Matthew 5, Jesus is trying to put Old Testament laws, mainly the 10 Commandments into modern terms.  Jesus isn’t attempting to change these commands.  Rather, He is putting them into laymen terms so that everyone in attendance understands.

According to Matthew 5:21-22, Jesus equates hatred with murder.  A normal person is not going to pull the trigger, killing someone.  However, when a person allows hatred to enter their heart and dwell there, murder is conceived.  Like the conservation with Cain in Genesis 4:6-7, God was trying to talk him out of acting upon his hatred of Abel.  The expression “sin is crouching at your door” is a Babylonian term used to refer to an evil demon trying to enter a building, threatening to harm those inside.  In other words, the second stage to pulling the triggers involves demonic influences which sows seeds of murder within someone’s mind.

Yet, Jesus does not stop here; there is one more step which pushes people over the cliff of normalcy to insanity.  Although the context of Matthew 5:27-30 is adultery, Jesus is addressing the Old Testament practice of purging.  If an alcoholic wants to quit drinking, but lives next door to a liquor store, he must move to purge his desire to drink.  Likewise, if someone embraces unwholesome lusts, you have to take drastic steps to regain control of your body, Matthew 5:29-30.  People who commit suicide and or murder are enslaved by these desires, crossing the point of no return like Cain, James 1:13-15.

I don’t claim to be an expert on murder or suicide, but I do believe all the answers to life can be found in the Bible.  You may not have all your questions answered in this life, yet you can make reservations for the next life, John 3:16-17.  In fact, John, the one whom Jesus loved, who knew Jesus better than anyone else on earth, leaves everyone an amazing promise in 1 John 5:13.  Make a date with God today, Romans 10:9-10, before its too late to act!

by Jay Mankus

A Study of the Word

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