What is the significance and nature of Cain and Abel’s gifts? What was the basis of their acceptance or rejection? Gen. 4:1-6
v.3 (AKJV) And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering to the LORD. v.4 (AKJV) And Abel, he also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect to Abel and to his offering: v.5 (AKJV) But to Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.
It appears that Cain was definitely an over the top kind of character. These were people that were apparently in very close proximity of God in a way that we do not typically experience. Cain's parents walked with God in the garden. Cain and Abel knew by some means that they were supposed to give an offering. The kind of offering may have been described as a blood sacrifice, if so Cain rebelled at that point. I feel this is clearly indicated by Heb. 11:4 which pints out that Abel offered a more excellent sacrifice than Cain without an attitude being mentioned. This verse further points out that God gave testimony to Abel's gift not his attitude which would probably read in a KJV as him giving out of the abundance of his heart, or some such. [Heb 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.] “The LXX translation suggests that the problem with Cain and his offering is an error in a ritual detail of the sacrifice. Is Cain thus found right in offering (i.e., doing so) but guilty of offering a sacrifice that is not divided properly?” Dr. Henry Morris states, “Adam and Eve had no doubt instructed their sons that this required a substitutionary sacrifice of innocent blood (Gen 3:21), Cain however chose to bring another type of offering on this occasion.” They knew right away that God did or did not...
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