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Sin Personified: Cain's Sin in Genesis 4:6-7

The story of “Cain and Abel” is one of the most famous stories in the whole Bible. Abel gave the first of his flocks in his sacrifice to God, while Cain did not give the first-fruits of his crop- he gave the leftovers. When God rejected Cain’s sacrifice, he becomes angry. Here, God uses one of the most interesting descriptions of sin in the Bible- sin is personified as “crouching at the door”.

 “Why are you angry, and why has your face fallen? If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is [for] you, but you must rule over it.” Genesis 4:6-7
 But what does this really mean? Let’s take a look at what this means, what it doesn’t mean (you may be surprised) and how this applies to life today.
 Cain’s Sunken Face  “Why are you angry, and why has your face fallen?” Gen 4:6 
 Verse 5(b) of Genesis 4 describes how Cain’s “had fallen”,
"For Cain and his offering he had no regard. So Cain was very angry, and his face fell”…

Its Not About Christmas or Easter (or Sunday)

Its not about Christmas, or Easter or for that matter Sunday. What do I mean? I don’t mean- “Don’t celebrate holidays”. Absolutely we should celebrate the Sabbath,  Christmas and Easter. Heartless religion does not please God. So often our celebration of these days like Christmas and Easter and even our weekly Sunday gathering at church is religious, but has no true heart for God. People have been falling into this trip since the beginning of time. We see this in the Book of Malachi,
“When you offer blind animals in sacrifice, is that not evil? And when you offer those that are lame or sick, is that not evil? Present that to your governor; will he accept you or show you favor? Oh that there were one among you who would shut the doors, that you might not kindle fire on my altar in vain! I have no pleasure in you, says the Lord of hosts, and I will not accept an offering from your hand.” Malachi 1:8, 10 ESV In this Bible passage, the Jewish exiles had been sacrificing and worshipi…

Word for Word: Episode 54

And Light Was.
וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים יְהִי אֹור וַֽיְהִי־אֹֽור׃ וַיַּרְא אֱלֹהִים אֶת־הָאֹור כִּי־טֹוב וַיַּבְדֵּל אֱלֹהִים בֵּין הָאֹור וּבֵין הַחֹֽשֶׁךְ׃ וַיִּקְרָא אֱלֹהִים ׀ לָאֹור יֹום וְלַחֹשֶׁךְ קָרָא לָיְלָה וַֽיְהִי־עֶרֶב וַֽיְהִי־בֹקֶר יֹום אֶחָֽד׃
And (the)* Mighty One said, "Be Light" and Light was. Then the Mighty One saw the light, that it was good. So The Mighty One separated the light and the darkness. And the Mighty One called Light "Day" and darkness He called "Night". Then there was an evening and there was a dawn: day one. Genesis 1:3-5 (*definite article is not in front of the name “Elohim”)
What had been a dark mass in a flux, probably collapsing on its own weight, was in a moment transformed as electromagnetic energy appeared “out of nowhere”. It is likely that the charged particles had now reached that narrow band that is visible to sentient creatures that had yet to be created. This happened mainly to allow life as we know it to exist.

The Body, God's Temple

“...your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God...You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body”- 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 ESV This verse is commonly used to support the idea of healthy living. While making an effort to live a healthy lifestyle is important and glorifying to God, this passage is not concerned with health. To say this verse teaches healthy living would be an incorrect application. This is a good example of a verse being “taken out of context”. The full context here reads:
“Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” 1 Cor 6:18-20 So then, what is this verse teaching? What does it mean when it says “your body is a temple …

The Path to God

The Path to God Isaiah 40:1-5 Isaiah had been there for years as a voice to the royal house of Judah. The message switches in chapter 40 to one of hope in times of trouble. As with Hosea before him, his message to the people is salvation by grace. The debt they had was too great, so God was going to pay the price. The command to the prophet was to "comfort" the people of God. This didn't mean to make them feel comfortable. But he was to stand alongside then and support them. Instead of despair, there was hope. For sure, hard times were coming--from inside the kingdom and from the outside--but God was in control.  The road ahead was going to be long and obstacles remained, but the path to God was on schedule. It is important to note that the people of God cannot remove the barriers that keep them from the LORD. That path to God is cleared from His side. About 600 years later a latter day prophet named John would point the way to Jesus, the Way. The long expected Messiah--o…

Throw Your Gold in the Trash

What do you consider valuable in your life? When we hear the word “valuable” or “priceless” we often think of money or precious gems. What we think of as valuable and what truly is valuable are often very different things. How much do you value your relationship with God? Can you say that everything else feels like trash compared to God?

In the Book of Job, Eliphaz gives us some great life wisdom. The Book of Job is considered “wisdom literature”, which means (like Proverbs and Ecclesiastes), it contains many pithy sayings on life. We often miss the great wise sayings found throughout Job, because we focus so much on the grand idea of “why do we suffer” (which The Book of Job actually does not answer directly).

Eliphaz accuses Job of withholding his material wealth from the poor (Job 22:7-11), which explains, in his view, why Job is being punished. So Eliphaz offers the following admonition:
“....If you remove injustice far from your tents; if you lay gold in the dust, and gold of O…

Faith and Mountains: God's Work

Recently I had the chance to visit Mt. Rainier in the State of Washington, which is one of the largest mountains in the United States. Mt. Rainier was literally the biggest thing I have ever seen in my entire life. It could be seen from long distances away and towered far above everything in its vicinity. The mountain was as tall, wide and thick as the eye could see. The mountain was not only untouchable, but impenetrable and immovable. The qualities of mountains make them ideal symbols for the obstacles of life- oftentimes immovable and towering far above anything else in life. The Bible uses mountains as a symbol for the seemingly mountainous assignments God gives us and of life’s greatest struggles.

 This post will focus on the work that God wants us to do and how we can accomplish this with his help. See this post for the mountains of struggles in our life.

 The people of Judah had finally returned from a long exile in faraway lands. Under the care of the Israelite governor, Zer…