Genesis04

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GENESIS 4 -- Sunday, March 20, 2011

  • 1-3 And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD. And she again bare his brother Abel. 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.

Now Yahweh had cursed the very soil, which caused it to grow thorny weeds. Adam had to work his butt off just to put food on the table. When his first-born son Cain was old enough he pitched in with dad and helped out in the field like a good boy.

  • 4-5 And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering: But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.

Adam's snotty second-born son, Abel, preferred to just walk around the hills with his sheep, which could not even be eaten because Yahweh did not authorize a meat diet for humanity until after the Flood (Genesis 9:3). The only thing Abel could do with his sheep is offer them to Yahweh as a burnt holocaust. So Abel became the next person (after Yahweh made Adam and Eve some fur coats) to perform the act of killing. One day Cain brought to Yahweh, in good faith, some of the fruit of the ground he had managed to grow (despite the soil being cursed) to offer in thanksgiving, but Yahweh had no respect for his offering, despite Cain being the first-born and natural heir to Adam's priestly ministry, because it didn't involve blood at all.

  • 6-7 And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.

So Cain, scratching his head and trying to figure out the rules, decided to kill his brother.

  • 8 And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.

Of course Cain was angry. Not so much angry with Abel as angry with Yahweh, who seemed to favor the lazy, shiftless one who just watched sheep over the faithful son who helped his father provide for the family. So killing Abel was a direct attack on Yahweh. No more lambchops for him!

  • 9 And the LORD said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother's keeper?

This murder got the deity's attention. Yahweh gave Cain a chance to confess, but Cain covered up and said he did not know what became of Abel.

  • 10-12 And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground. And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother's blood from thy hand; When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength; a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth.

As punishment, Yahweh cast Cain out of the farming profession completely, telling the soil not to yield up anything for him. Never again would Cain get to pester Yahweh with his boring fruits and vegetables that didn't involve blood and killing.

  • 13-15 And Cain said unto the LORD, My punishment is greater than I can bear. Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the earth; and from thy face shall I be hid; and I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth; and it shall come to pass, that every one that findeth me shall slay me. And the LORD said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And the LORD set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him.

At least Yahweh did not demand Cain's life as a human sacrifice for Abel's life as we do today with the death penalty. But it is not known what the mark of Cain actually was. Unless it were an actual written threat tattooed on his skin, it's hard to see how the mere sight of this mark would deter would-be murderers.

  • 16 And Cain went out from the presence of the LORD, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden.

For the second time we see the consequences of defying God, which is to be scattered. As Adam and Eve were scattered from paradise, so Cain and his wife were scattered from the land itself.

  • 17 And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Enoch: and he builded a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch.

Well, who was Cain's wife? Obviously it was his own sister, unnamed in the Bible. Fundamentalists who believe the Bible is the literal, inerrant word of God assure me that the Fall was a gradual process that continues to this day, and early on, men and women still had most of the genetic perfection that was Adam and Eve's state when they were freshly created by God. So there would not have been any defective recessive genes that would be expressed in the offspring of Cain and his sister. And Cain was not content to just build a Little House on the Prairie, no, he built an entire city called Enoch. Population three.

After Enoch came:

Irad Mehujael Methusael Lamech (husband of Adah and Zillah)

Adah bore Jabal, father of tent-dwelling herdsmen. Zillah bore Tubal-cain, blacksmith, and brother of Naamah.

Lamech confessed to his wives that he, too, killed a young man, and boasted that God would punish anyone who avenged themselves on him eleven times worse than the recompense promised by the mark of Cain.

  • 25 And Adam knew his wife again; and she bare a son, and called his name Seth: For God, said she, hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew.

Adam, created in 4,163 BC, was 130 years of age when he begat Seth, according to Genesis 5:3, so this joyous event occurred in 4,033 BC. Assuming Eve was popping out girls at the same rate, the world now had eight people: Adam, Eve, Cain, Mrs. Cain, Li'l Enoch, Seth, Mrs. Seth, and the widow Mrs. Abel.

  • 26 And to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enos: then began men to call upon the name of the LORD.

Seth was 105 years of age when he begat Enos (or Enosh), according to Genesis 5:6, so this brings the chronology up to 3,928 BC.

What follows in chapter five is a straightforward geneaology of the patriarchs ending with Noah's triplets, Shem, Ham, and Japeth:

  • 3928 BC Enosh to Kenan (Gen. 5:9)
  • 3838 BC Kenan to Mahalalel (Gen. 5:12)
  • 3768 BC Mahalalel to Jared (Gen. 5:15)
  • 3703 BC Jared to Enoch (Gen. 5:18)
  • 3541 BC Enoch to Methuselah (Gen. 5:21)
  • 3476 BC Methuselah to Lamech (Gen. 5:25)
  • 3289 BC Lamech to Noah (Gen. 5:28)
  • 3107 BC Noah to Shem (Gen. 5:32)

When Enoch was 365 years old Yahweh took him somewhere.

Methuselah lived 969 years and died in the same year as the flood, which was 2507 BC. Maybe he died IN the flood.

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