A Daily Genesis

Genesis 4:9-12

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[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 4:9 . . Yhvh said to Cain: Where is your brother Abel? And he said: I don't know. Am I my brother's keeper?[/B]

The Hebrew word for "keeper" indicates, in this case, a guardian; viz[B]:[/B] responsibility for someone or something put in one's care; for example[B]:[/B] Abel was a keeper of the sheep: a shepherd. (Gen 4:2)

Cain worshipped the True God, same as his brother, and he practiced the very same rituals; yet responded to his maker's simple question with a lie and a sarcastic rejoinder. Those who are the Serpent's progeny often act like that because the Serpent's progeny have a Serpent's tongue.

"You are of your father the Devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it." (John 8:44-45)

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 4:10 . .Then He said: What have you done? Hark, your brother's blood cries out to me from the ground![/B]

The Hebrew word for "cries out" is from [I]tsa'aq[/I] (tsaw-ak') and means[B]:[/B] to shriek; which can be defined as a wild, involuntary scream.

Whether or not human blood actually has an audible voice isn't nearly important as to what it might be saying. And in this case, it certainly couldn't be good.

In civil law, it's handy to produce the corpus delicti in a homicide case because it's very useful for proving the reality of a death, and for establishing the cause, and the time, of its occurrence. It's interesting that God didn't produce Abel's body for evidence. He could have, but instead relied upon the voice of his body's blood. So a murder victim's blood can be introduced as a witness in the courts of Heaven. That is very interesting.

Abel's blood accuses. In contrast, Christ's blood defends (e.g. Rom 5:6-11, Heb 12:24, and 1Pet 1:18-19). That's a whole lot more to people's advantage.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 4:11 . .Therefore, you shall be more cursed than the ground which opened its mouth to receive your brother's blood from your hand.[/B]

The original curse upon the soil reduced its agrarian productivity. But the curse upon Cain brought his agrarian productivity to a complete and irrevocable end.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 4:12 . . If you till the soil, it shall no longer yield its strength to you. You shall become a ceaseless wanderer on earth.[/B]

Ceaseless wandering was an inevitable consequence of the inability to raise an adequate amount of your own food in that day and age. Nobody was eating meat yet, so the soil was pretty much it as far as nourishment went.

Cain went on to become a very hungry, very overworked man. Wherever he tried to farm, the ground would respond in such a way as to act infertile. The curse was leveled right at his diet and the source of his food. Up till now, Cain had been a successful, independent farmer. But no amount of agricultural wisdom would ever restore his independence, nor his once green thumb no matter how hard he tried to overcome it. Cain had crossed over a line and there was no going back.

Since Cain could no longer sustain himself by farming, it would be difficult to settle down and build himself a home; so he was forced to become migratory and forage for seasonal foods like the uncivilized beast that he was. It was poetic justice. The consequences sure fit his personality. If he was going to act like a brute, then he deserved to live like one.

Though the Bible doesn't say; it would seem to me a reasonable assumption that the curse upon Cain extended to his posterity (cf. Num 14:18). Up ahead we'll see that they became renowned as a commercial/industrial society rather than agrarian. As time went by, and the Adams family multiplied and spread out; Cain's community no doubt traded with them using income from the sale of manufactured goods to barter for the foods that they themselves were unable to grow. Dependence upon imported food may not be ideal; but it's certainly better than going hungry.

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