Why was Cain's offering rejected by God?

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Lanolin

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Cain will never please God in every thing , because the wicked one dwells in him , in the case of compared to Abel ( the chosen) so God rejected Cain offering , and accepted Abel.
Hmm thats a bit harsh it wasnt Cain was no good its just his offering was no good. Recall God was displeased but did give Cain some advice, which he took the wrong way, but even after that God had mercy on him. His dad Adam could have avenged abels death.
 

Lanolin

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His own works were evil...

Evil figs? Recall...there are good trees and also corrupt trees. If Cain had taken fruit from the corrupt trees and presented them to God, well of course God wouldnt have been pleased.

As for bbq lamb vs fruit salad...well it is funny that men are often told to bring meat and ladies salad to bbq. Variety in diet is good. Just dont bring marshmallows and coke.
 

Lanolin

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Check out Jeremiah 24:2
 

crossnote

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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. (Hebrews 11:4 KJV)

Two things.

1. By Faith

2. a more excellent sacrifice.

This is pretty clear. Abel's offering was mixed with faith. Why? His faith was made visible by his blood sacrifice. This is exactly what James 2 is all about.
 
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Hmm thats a bit harsh it wasnt Cain was no good its just his offering was no good. Recall God was displeased but did give Cain some advice, which he took the wrong way, but even after that God had mercy on him. His dad Adam could have avenged abels death.

In another translation Said:



1John3:12 We must not be like Cain; he belonged to the Evil One and murdered his own brother Abel. Why did Cain murder him? Because the things he himself did were wrong, and the things his brother did were right

Note:

The first murder victim was Abel , Cain belonged to the devil ( tares Mat13:38-39) , Abel belonged to God / born of God John1:13 ; wheat Mat13:38-39 , Isa63:16 ;” The things” indicate all Cain deeds ----àwere wrong = all the deed of the devil were wrong = there is no truth in him ; but Abel in the opposite.



8:44 You are the children of your father, the Devil, and you want to follow your father's desires. From the very beginning he was a murderer and has never been on the side of truth, because there is no truth in him. When he tells a lie, he is only doing what is natural to him, because he is a liar and the father of all lies

Note:

your father, the Devil” = devil/Satan ,” the very beginning he was a murderer” the account of the first murder was In the case of Abel ; “there is no truth in him”= devil deeds , “he is a liar and the father of all lies” = the account of the first lie was in Eden.

Associate the note of two verses above , the conclusion ? -----à spirit being dwelled in Cain was the devil himself.



which he took the wrong way, but even after that God had mercy on him.

Gen4:14 You are driving me off the land and away from your presence. I will be a homeless wanderer on the earth, and anyone who finds me will kill me."

4:15 But the LORD answered, "No. If anyone kills you, seven lives will be taken in revenge." So the LORD put a mark on Cain to warn anyone who met him not to kill him

God did not give mercy to the spirit dwelled in Cain /should never save him for eternity , but gave mercy for not to be extinct , there surely were many of Cain descendants/vessels unto dishonor Rom9:21 for God’s purposes ( there shall be like sand of the sea in the Judgment day which are possessed by the devils Rev20:8 , How shall the devils being freed if everyone surely God’s children /vessels of mercy ? or what is the reason God sets them free ? for deceiving those such sand of the sea ? ).
 

posthuman

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From those two verses , we come to the estimate that the God’s reason was related to: the personality of Cain that was different from Abel in the eyes of God

. . .

So this topic seems clear that God would teach us about the existence of the chosen people and people in generally that was not the chosen = born of flesh people which in its development shall be the devil’s camp

. . .

The lesson about the chosen people is very important because without a correct understanding of the existence of a chosen people in the eyes of God, God's people will not come to an understanding of the Christian faith
are you saying there wasn't anything actually wrong with Cain's sacrifice, but God rejected it just 'because Cain is Cain' and Abel was chosen and Cain was not?

then why does God say to Cain

If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted?
(Genesis 4:7)
 

posthuman

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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. (Hebrews 11:4 KJV)

Two things.

1. By Faith

2. a more excellent sacrifice.

This is pretty clear.
yes, this much is clear

Abel's offering was mixed with faith. Why? His faith was made visible by his blood sacrifice.
this part isn't so clear - i can only project the necessity of blood in the sacrifice if i am sure their offerings are meant to be atonement for sin / guilt.
if they are meant to be thanksgiving offerings, e.g. firstfruits offerings, then blood isn't required; grain is acceptable ((Leviticus 2:12)) according to the principles of sacrifices laid out later in the Law.

the text does indicate Abel brought '
firstlings' and it doesn't say the same about what Cain offered. so i have the hypothesis that their offerings were harvest/firstfruits in nature, and that Cain held back for himself the best parts of the harvest.


This is exactly what James 2 is all about.
this isn't immediately clear to me either -- Cain did bring an offering from the produce of his work, just like Abel did. Cain's work didn't involve animals so it didn't involve blood; but it's not as though Cain didn't bring anything. what are you seeing here in James 2?

if however their offerings were of a firstfruits nature, and Cain kept back the best of the fruits for himself, it is ((re James 2)) like he is having less respect for God than himself - treating God as the man in poor clothes and himself as the man in fine, rich robes ((which is, really, James's main beef as he opens ch. 2 - favoritism))



i really think Jude 1:11 is a necessary part to understand this, as well as Hebrews 11:4 & 1 John 3:12
we have to see how Cain is linked to Balaam & Korah, and how this also showed he was faithless, and that his actions were evil
 

posthuman

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we have to see how Cain is linked to Balaam & Korah
  • Korah's rebellion ((Numbers 16)) did not involve blood sacrifice.
  • Korah & those aligned with him protested that all of the congregation was holy, and asked why should Moses & Aaron be in charge? they sought the preeminence for themselves.
  • Korah & Aaron both took incense before God to see which would be accepted - both the same bloodless offering
how does this link to Cain?
 

louis

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How did you arrive at that conclusion?
Simple common sense reasoning.
How could God have expected anything more from Cain other than he possesed?
Since God would not have expected more from an individual than they possesed, then why was Cain's offering sin?
Cain's offering was sin because He did not believe in a benevolent God who would bless him with more, and so he offered his waste produce.
Sort of like the faithless priests who offered up the blind, lame and sick of the sheep.

Malachi 1:8 And if ye offer the blind for sacrifice, is it not evil? and if ye offer the lame and sick, is it not evil? offer it now unto thy governor; will he be pleased with thee, or accept thy person? saith the Lord of hosts.
 

oldhermit

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In the course of time.” Literally, “at the end of days.” What is the end of days suggested by the context? What would contextually mark this particular course of time?

1. Popular options

a. The end of a seven-day period.
b. The anniversary of the end of creation. The problem with both of these theories is that they cannot be arrived from the contents of the context.

2. The only temporal indicator offered by the text is that of the time of harvest. Thus, the course of time from one harvest to the next. We know this because of the type of sacrifice both men are offering. “And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord. And Abel, he ALSO brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof.”
3. Both men are offering the offering the same sacrifice - the offering of first-fruits, one of the flock and one of the earth. Both are legitimate sacrifices. Cain, being a tiller of the ground naturally offers the first-fruit of his crop. Being a keeper of the flock, Able offers his first-fruit of the flock. What implications can we generalize from Able offering up the fat portions of his sacrifice?

a. That the offering of sacrifice had already been regulated by both time and procedure.
* It was offered at the proper time - “at the end of days.”
* There is no separation of the fat from the sacrifice. It was offered up as a whole sacrifice.

b. That sacrifices were a matter of instruction. How did they know to offer these sacrifices and how these sacrifices were to be offered in such a way that would be acceptable to the Lord? This instruction had to be revealed instruction. Even if they received the practice from their father, Adam still had to have received it from the Lord.
c. Clearly, this was not their first sacrifice.
d. This also offers the possibility that other types of animal sacrifices were also being offered that did not require the separation of the fat portions.

4. There are no indicators from the text that the sacrifice of Able had any connection to atonement or even contrition. In other words, this is not a sin sacrifice.


a. There is no sprinkling of blood mentioned.
b. There is no removal of the intestines or the refuse mentioned.

This is a sacrifice of thanksgiving. Cain offered his first-fruits as a matter of thanksgiving. This is the nature if any first-fruit offering. The text says that Able ALSO of his first. Both men are offering the same sacrifice. Why then was Cain's sacrifice not accepted? This rejection seems to stem from Cain's relationship with his brother.
 

JohnRH

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The text says that Able ALSO of his first. Both men are offering the same sacrifice.
I think the "also" has to do with "brought": Cain brought and Abel also brought.

I don't think the 'also' necessitates that the contents of what they brought were the same. "Fruit of the ground" and "firstlings of his flock and the fat thereof" are too different to be the same offering.

And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering: 5 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect.

Heb. 11:4 By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain ...
I don't think a sacrifice can be more excellent than the same sacrifice.
 

posthuman

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The text says that Able ALSO of his first. Both men are offering the same sacrifice.
thank you oldhermit - i have arrived at much the same conclusions as you have ((not sure you have read the thread?))
i hadn't noticed the 'also' and that's very informative! I have this question tho, how do I know the also implies Cain brought first fruits? could it mean less specifically, just that Abel 'also brought'?

i have been leaning toward the 'issue' with Crain's sacrifice being that it was not first fruits, as Abel was, but that he kept the best for himself. I think this would fit well with Jude 1:11, tying Cain, Korah and Balaam together through covetousness.

if Cain truly brought first fruits and the issue was with his attitude, how do I explain the connection Jude makes, and how do I explain how God admonishes Cain to 'do well' rather than to 'think well'?
 

oldhermit

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I think the "also" has to do with "brought": Cain brought and Abel also brought.

I don't think the 'also' necessitates that the contents of what they brought were the same. "Fruit of the ground" and "firstlings of his flock and the fat thereof" are too different to be the same offering.

And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering: 5 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect.

Heb. 11:4 By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain ...
I don't think a sacrifice can be more excellent than the same sacrifice.
The point is that they both brought an offering of first fruit.
 

crossnote

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this isn't immediately clear to me either -- Cain did bring an offering from the produce of his work, just like Abel did. Cain's work didn't involve animals so it didn't involve blood; but it's not as though Cain didn't bring anything. what are you seeing here in James 2?

if however their offerings were of a firstfruits nature, and Cain kept back the best of the fruits for himself, it is ((re James 2)) like he is having less respect for God than himself - treating God as the man in poor clothes and himself as the man in fine, rich robes ((which is, really, James's main beef as he opens ch. 2 - favoritism))
My point in bringing up James 2 was to link "Abel's more excellent sacrifice by faith' (Heb 11:4) with his works "(his blood offering), thus faith is more than a theoretical concept but involves action as James shows. Cain, as many do today, attempt to approach God apart from the blood sacrifice of Christ Jesus, even if it isn't for forgiveness of ones' sin. The majority ofthe Book of Hebrews centers on our approach to God...by faith...not through animal blood but through the blood of Jesus.
 

posthuman

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The point is that they both brought an offering of first fruit.
i agree the text seems to indicate that the offering is a firstfruit, not an atonement context.

i am not sure the 'also' reflects that Cain brought the best/first of his harvest. it seems. inconclusive, and i admit at this point i am a bit biased because i currently have the impression that Cain offering something second-best, from his own covetousness, explains the NT mentions of Cain very well
 

oldhermit

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thank you oldhermit - i have arrived at much the same conclusions as you have ((not sure you have read the thread?))
i hadn't noticed the 'also' and that's very informative! I have this question tho, how do I know the also implies Cain brought first fruits? could it mean less specifically, just that Abel 'also brought'?

i have been leaning toward the 'issue' with Crain's sacrifice being that it was not first fruits, as Abel was, but that he kept the best for himself. I think this would fit well with Jude 1:11, tying Cain, Korah and Balaam together through covetousness.

if Cain truly brought first fruits and the issue was with his attitude, how do I explain the connection Jude makes, and how do I explain how God admonishes Cain to 'do well' rather than to 'think well'?
"Also brought" has to be linked to something, it cannot just be hanging. The context is the offering of first fruits by both men at the proper season. Cain's sacrifice as an offering was just as legitimate as that of Able. It was the first fruit of the ground. What made Cain's sacrifice unacceptable was his relationship with his brother which ultimately manifested itself in a murder.

Hebrews 11 tells us that what made Able's sacrifice better that of Cain was the element of faith. Able had it and Cain did not. The problem was not with the sacrifice. The problem lies with the worshiper. We learn in 1John 3:11-12 how Cain's lack of faith manifested itself - evil deeds. Faith is not attributed to Cain's sacrifice. The sacrifice means nothing without the heart of the worshiper. Able was not faithful because of the sacrifice, his sacrifice was acceptable because of his faith. This was not a sacrifice of atonement or contrition. This was a thanksgiving sacrifice that did not necessarily require blood.

I cannot help but wonder if Jesus may have been drawing from this example in Matthew 5:22-24 when he says, "Everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever says to his brother, ‘You good-for-nothing,’ shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell. Therefore if you are presenting your offering at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your offering there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering."
 

Lanolin

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"Also brought" has to be linked to something, it cannot just be hanging. The context is the offering of first fruits by both men at the proper season. Cain's sacrifice as an offering was just as legitimate as that of Able. It was the first fruit of the ground. What made Cain's sacrifice unacceptable was his relationship with his brother which ultimately manifested itself in a murder.

Hebrews 11 tells us that what made Able's sacrifice better that of Cain was the element of faith. Able had it and Cain did not. The problem was not with the sacrifice. The problem lies with the worshiper. We learn in 1John 3:11-12 how Cain's lack of faith manifested itself - evil deeds. Faith is not attributed to Cain's sacrifice. The sacrifice means nothing without the heart of the worshiper. Able was not faithful because of the sacrifice, his sacrifice was acceptable because of his faith. This was not a sacrifice of atonement or contrition. This was a thanksgiving sacrifice that did not necessarily require blood.

I cannot help but wonder if Jesus may have been drawing from this example in Matthew 5:22-24 when he says, "Everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever says to his brother, ‘You good-for-nothing,’ shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell. Therefore if you are presenting your offering at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your offering there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering."
Yes I was thinking this too. Cain had something against his brother that God could see. Maybe it was they didnt present their offerings together? But what did God mean when he said to Cain 'if thou doest well, shall thou not be accepted'?

I am not sure about the assertion that Cain bought his 'waste products' I mean that is not even in the scripture.

What was it about Abel that God respected, and Cain that he had not respect. I thought it was to do with the offerings, not the personalities, but...

How come the Bible says 'abel was a keeper of the sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground' note that God had already cursed the ground thanks to Adam.

Also note later that Noah looked after the animals in the ark, and he was called Noah because in Genesis 5:29 it says And he called his name Noah saying This same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which the Lord hath cursed.
 

oldhermit

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Yes I was thinking this too. Cain had something against his brother that God could see. Maybe it was they didnt present their offerings together? But what did God mean when he said to Cain 'if thou doest well, shall thou not be accepted'?

I am not sure about the assertion that Cain bought his 'waste products' I mean that is not even in the scripture.

What was it about Abel that God respected, and Cain that he had not respect. I thought it was to do with the offerings, not the personalities, but...

How come the Bible says 'abel was a keeper of the sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground' note that God had already cursed the ground thanks to Adam.

Also note later that Noah looked after the animals in the ark, and he was called Noah because in Genesis 5:29 it says And he called his name Noah saying This same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which the Lord hath cursed.
The fact that God had cursed the ground because of Adam does not delegitimize the offering or the first fruit of the ground. This even became an integral part of the sacrificial system in Leviticus.
 

Lanolin

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The fact that God had cursed the ground because of Adam does not delegitimize the offering or the first fruit of the ground. This even became an integral part of the sacrificial system in Leviticus.
I just thought it had might have something to do with it, and also the bible didnt specifically mention the firstfruit for Cain but the firstling for Abel.

I also think maybe that Abel keeping sheep was significant as he could have kept some other animals, why sheep? I do agree though that asserting it was a blood sacrifice is projecting into the scripture something that isnt actually stated there. When God says sin is crouching at your door...I dont think he meant them to be like Job and offer up offerings just in case they sinned to appease Him. It seems Cain comitted sin afterward and not before and he would have had to ask for forgiveness.

The bible says when the time came they both gave offerings...it would have been harvest time. Abel seems gave of the firstlings of his flock and the fat but Cain didnt seem to give of the FIRST fruits of his harvest.

What isnt mentioned is what kind of fruit Cain offered...was it corn, was it figs, was it grapes...? What could he actually grow on the ground that was cursed? Its stated in the previous chapter that thorns and thistles grew from it. He would eat the herb of the field. In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread...

Did Cain offer any bread made from the fruit (corn? ) or did he just offer the plain corn.

The Bible does not say, but later it does talk about the shewbread as an offering.
 

Lanolin

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Later in Genesis 8:21

GOd does say in his heart I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake..

But interesting that Noah offered burnt offerings of clean animals, both beast and fowl. He didnt offer fruit, well he didnt have any land yet to grow any...but later he did keep a vineyard.