There is one thing worse than murder: premeditated murder. You can’t sink much lower than that.
As I said yesterday, it’s a matter of recognizing when we’ve got a wrong attitude, before it ends up being a wrong action. Sadly, Cain chose wrong, so the world’s first murder took place. (Genesis 4 v 8)
The wrong choices didn’t even end there. As a teacher and a parent, I’d say it’s much easier to handle a repentant sinner than a cocky whatsit who adds to their crime with a mouthful of cheek.
But Cain has the audacity to give an arrogant response to God. God seems to be almost at a loss as to how to handle him. If Cain had climbed down, and demonstrated some regret, there might have been some hope for him. His punishment is a curse. God had withheld that when dealing with his parents’ sin.
To me, though, the strange thing is that Cain finds exile from God to be unbearable. You’d think he would be glad to clear off, get away.
God was still very present in the land where Adam and Eve had raised their kids. Bad as he had been, Cain was familiar with God’s presence, and couldn’t bear the thought of losing it.
If only Cain had had a right attitude to his brother, he wouldn’t have got into this mess. And if he’d had a right attitude to God, doubtless God would have helped him find a way back.
For most of us today, the presence of God is something we only experience occasionally and long for often. Yet we see over and over again that our God wants to spend time with us. One thing we can do, is make sure that we do get our attitudes right in relation to God and one another. Maybe when that happens, we’ll experience more of the presence of God.
Psalm 133How good and pleasant it is
when God’s people live together in unity! …For there the Lord bestows his blessing,
even life forevermore.