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Genesis Framework Part 42


Genesis Framework Pt 42


Genesis Framework

GF42 Genesis 4.3-4
June 26, 2016
Part 42

NKJ Genesis 4:3-5
3 And in the process of time it came to pass that Cain brought an offering of the fruit of the ground to the LORD.
4 Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. And the LORD respected Abel and his offering,
5 but He did not respect Cain and his offering. And Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell.

NKJ Genesis 4:3
And in the process of time it came to pass that Cain brought an offering of the fruit of the ground to the LORD.

Genesis 4:3

NKJ And in the process of time it came to pass

And it came to be at the end of a definite time of days,

Not a random time-event.

NKJ that Cain brought an offering of the fruit of the ground to the LORD

that Cain brought unto Yahweh out from within the fruit of the tilled ground as an offering.

NKJ Jude 1:11
Woe to them! For they have gone in the way of Cain, have run greedily in the error of Balaam for profit, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.

The first indication of there being “the way of Cain” is a reference to a warning against human inventions in Divine worship, rather than the more obvious sin of murder; that unless the form of worship is prescribed by God, it will not be acceptable.

We have a difficult time identifying the essential differences between the offerings from Cain and Abel, other than one was a grain-offering and the other was an animal-sacrifice offering .

The phrase “fruit of the tilled ground” is code( idiom) for raw grain.

If we look to the next verse and attempt to draw a contrast between the expression of what Abel did differently as he brought his offering, this is what we find.

There is no difference; each one simply brought his offering unto Yahweh.

Both verb expressions for Cain and Abel bringing an offering are in the force of the hiphil; namely, the causative active; which is not at all unusual, since this word in the hiphil is commonly used in the Scriptures to denote the “bringing of presents” in worship approach.

So apparently, the obvious difference is in the contrast between the type of gifts, hence the difference of worship.

While we are at a definite disadvantage to know exactly what God had prescribed as proper and acceptable worship at this particular time in redemptive history, we are safe in saying that an animal blood-sacrifice was acceptable, and a raw-grain offering was not.

More later…

We are also safe in saying that both brothers knew exactly what God would and would not accept, but Cain had some ideas of his own as to what he thought Yahweh should accept, and Cain acted on his own willful imagination, considering himself fully justified in bring forth a gift of Cain’s own choosing.

Let’s compare the words used for “offering” in Genesis 4.3 and 4 in the hope of snagging a hint of insight into the differences of the two offerings.

Each of the three references to a gift in these two verses are identical; that is, using this same word in each instance:

Hebrew for A Gift or Offeringmin-chah' a gift tribute, an offering

The scope of the offering denoted by this word is very generic, and is used to denote an offering of any kind made to God; in this context, it is not all that specific with regard to Cain’s offering.

If understood as an “offering” to God, this word denotes an offering of any kind, whether grain or animals— so, certainly we are not to presuppose that his offering was the same as what is later defined as a “grain-offering” for a very poor person to be used as a sin-offering.

Otherwise, later grain offerings per se, not used as sin-offering by the poor, were ground grain or mixed with oil and frankincense.

These “regular grain offerings” could be raw, roasted, ground to flour, or prepared as bread or cakes.

The Way of Cain

To ignore God’s instructions

To replace His stipulations with one’s own

To be surprised at God for not appreciating the work expended in preparing an offering and for rejecting it

To resent God for accepting the gift from another instead

To judge God as arbitrary and unfair

To be hotly envious of those who gain God’s favor, interpreting such circumstances as intrusive and unfair competition. (This distorted notion is based on the erroneous presupposition that God would have accepted Cain’s offering if it had not been for Abel’s offering.)

To be unrepentant when indicted, able to justify even the most heinous action in order to protect one’s positive self-image.

that Cain brought unto Yahweh out from within the fruit of the tilled ground as an offering.

There appears to be enough embedded information in this phrase for parsing to indicate that Cain brought raw grain unto the LORD as his offering in worship.

4 Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. And the LORD respected Abel and his offering,
5 but He did not respect Cain and his offering. And Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell.

Then Abel in addition, carried in [same expression] himself out from within among the firstborn of his flock (sheep and goats) and from the fat of it [the choicest parts of the flock], and Yahweh gazed at it (steadily, with interest).

Hebrew for To gaze at kheh'-leb English celeb

5 but He did not respect Cain and his offering. And Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell.

And Cain exceedingly burned with anger,

Hebrew for To burn with anger to burn, to be kindled, of anger –

Catch the irony: Cain’s offering was not consumed by fire; but Cain’s own fiery anger consumed him.

In the process of dealing with words, I discovered an interesting variation on this one…Ancient Hebrew pictograph for to burn with angercha-rah'

as in the mark that identifies a man of the heat of passion, and much competitiveness

This word denotes the mark (the excessive characteristic) of a man who eagerly strives to excel; one who hotly contends, as if in a race of horses.

NKJ Genesis 4:4
Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. And the LORD respected Abel and his offering,

Whatever the word “respect” means, it is applicable to both the gift-offering and to the person offering it.

Hebrew for To Gaze to gaze (steadily, with interest); to regard (with favor), “to look at steadily with interest”

There is a greater implication here...

Since “to respect” has to do with the registering of a gaze of attentive and engaged interest, how could Cain have been able to perceive the LORD’s favor for Abel’s gift unless he could have observed Yahweh’s face for himself?

Since this is most unlikely, we need to look into the word Hebrew for To Gaze shah-ah' itself for and explanation to this problem.

Hebrew for To Gaze “to look at steadily with interest”

This will take us to the ancient Hebrew pictographs once again, in the hope of gaining some meaningful insight into the character this word has always had from its very beginning.

Hebrew for To Gaze “to look at steadily with interest”

Root: Ancient hebrew Pictograph for To Watch

Action: to watch

Concrete: a shepherd “destroyer watches”

Abstract: delight

Ancient Hebrew pictograph for "to" as in To Watch front teeth, used for devouring and destruction

Ancient Hebrew Pictograph for Watch as in To watch eye, watches

Whole word: Ancient Hebrew Pictograph for A delight Behelda delight beheld

Action: to watch; to look upon with respect

to look at steadily with interest

This expression is obviously a projection of human characteristics upon the person of Yahweh in anthropomorphic terms to indicate, that immediately prior to God having “consumed” Abel’s offering, He would have first gazed upon it with favor, as in regarding it as something very desirable to devour, “a delight beheld.”

On the other hand, since God had passed over Cain’s offering without incidence, and by not consuming his offering, Cain correctly concluded that God had not considered his gift “a delight to behold.”

By extension, God’s response toward each offering would have naturally reflected personally upon the status of those offering the gifts.

One way or the other, God’s personal evaluation was rendered: favorable or unfavorable.

How are you at receiving gifts?

What if you made it clear what you did not want to receive as a gift, and someone insisted on giving it to you anyway.

What would that kind of action have to say about the one giving the gift?

And the LORD respected Abel and his offering, but He did not respect Cain and his offering.

This is actually and idiom for God’s acceptance of an offering by fire.

Later in redemptive history, we find a somewhat more explicit expression of God’s acceptance of offerings in language that conveys that God accepted offerings by causing fire to fall from heaven and consume the sacrifice.

God giving a steady gaze at an offering before casting a bolt of fire from heaven at it, would certainly also be appreciated by anyone standing near the offering.

Is God known to be specific in what He expects in a worship offering?

NKJ Leviticus 2:1, 4-5
“When anyone offers a grain offering to the LORD, his offering shall be of fine flour. And he shall pour oil on it, and put frankincense on it. And if you bring as an offering a grain offering baked in the oven, it shall be unleavened cakes of fine flour mixed with oil, or unleavened wafers anointed with oil. But if your offering is a grain offering baked in a pan, it shall be of fine flour, unleavened, mixed with oil.

NKJ Leviticus 2:11-13
“No grain offering which you bring to the LORD shall be made with leaven, for you shall burn no leaven nor any honey in any offering to the LORD made by fire. As for the offering of the firstfruits, you shall offer them to the LORD, but they shall not be burned on the altar for a sweet aroma. And every offering of your grain offering you shall season with salt; you shall not allow the salt of the covenant of your God to be lacking from your grain offering. With all your offerings you shall offer salt.”

NKJ Leviticus 5:11-13
“But if he is not able to bring two turtledoves or two young pigeons, then he who sinned shall bring for his offering one-tenth of an ephah of fine flour as a sin offering. He shall put no oil on it, nor shall he put frankincense on it, for it is a sin offering. Then he shall bring it to the priest, and the priest shall take his handful of it as a memorial portion, and burn it on the altar according to the offerings made by fire to the LORD. It is a sin offering. The priest shall make atonement for him, for his sin that he has committed in any of these matters; and it shall be forgiven him. The rest shall be the priest's as a grain offering.”

Now, let’s go considerably deeper into this matter…

If you really think about it, according to the Scriptures, no fire having its origin in this world ever consumed the sacrifices which God accepted.

The sacrifices of the heathen always have been altogether separate and detached from God.

Based on our understanding of these things, there is a strong likelihood that God never expected an offering from Cain;

but Cain out of his highly competitive fallen-man human character, could not tolerate the idea of someone else getting attention from God, and him not.

So, he invented his own version for approaching God, which by definition was an act of mockery and perversion, also for which he should have been thankful that God did not strike him dead where he stood.

Obviously God had other plans for Cain, and for his kind.

It is even so with worship now that is not the fruit of the Holy Spirit, who is also symbolized by burning fire.

It is an offering of “strange-fire” for the flesh to offer worship.

Please keep it in mind that the fire which was used to kindle the incense on the Golden Altar of worship within the Holy Place was the same fire which had consumed the sacrifice of atonement on the Brazen Altar.

Quite frankly, this tells us that there can be no incense of prayer ascending to heaven that is not based on, and does not proceed from the blood of atonement.

This is really what is going on in these verses in Genesis 4– without the sacrifice of blood atonement, there can be no acceptance of any other offering.

And that fire must first fall from heaven.

This revelation from God will also give release to that infamous log-jamb of confusion and misinterpreted by so many for so long, which we will look at in Genesis 4.7.

God makes it clear how He would be approached, and how He would be worshipped.

Cain was never truly God’s child.

God had not expected Cain to worship Him.

Therefore, God ignored his grain offering, because it was not an atoning-offering.

But, when pressed by Cain, God let Cain know that there was such a thing as an acceptable atoning animal-sacrifice which God had provided, always resting ready nearby.

God also made it clear that Cain would always willfully ignore its provision; in effect, rule over it, rather than to acquiesce to it.

That’s all I’ll say about this for now.

True worshippers today worship God in spirit, and through the sacrifice which God has accepted, Christ our substitute, upon whom the Divine judgment fell, instead of on His people.

Abel was God’s people, Cain was not God’s people.

Many will be surprised on the Day of Judgment when they discover that it was just as the Word of God says; only the righteousness of Christ is able to save you. All men are sinners and no one can save himself. God is just, so He must punish sin; but He is also merciful, moreover gracious, and offers His Son as the perfect sacrifice in order to purchase a place for you in heaven, which He offers to you as the free gift of eternal life.

Jesus is God Incarnate

In order to pay the debt of our sins, He came from Heaven, having been sent by the Father, where He lived a life of perfect obedience to the Father even unto the shameful death upon the cross in order to pay the debt of your sins.

This gift must be received by faith, believing that Jesus’ perfect life and Cross Work was His complete and necessary Atonement for your sins, in your behalf.

Faith is a gift that comes by the Power of God the Holy Spirit working in a person’s innermost being.

The Holy Spirit has the authority and power to quicken your dead spirit, to make it come to life.

If you have not done so before this moment, ask Jesus to forgive you your sins, tell Him you’ve stop trying to be your own savior, and ask Him to come into your life right now, and to give you eternal life.

Then, in faith believing, thank Him for the gift that He is giving you, the one He paid for in full in your place, in Jesus’ name, AMEN

Copyright June, 2016
Rev. Jim Craig
All Rights Reserved


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