Character Studies

Lesson 3

CAIN and ABEL

 

"By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain…"  (Heb. 11:4)

Text: Genesis 4; Heb. 11:4; 1 Jno. 3:12

Name: Cain ("acquire"), Abel ("breathe," vapor, vanity, nothing")

Date: Unknown

Place: Outside of Eden

SEVERAL "FIRSTS" OF GENESIS 4

First children
First offerings
First sin against man
First civilization
First spiritual seed

CONTRASTING CAIN AND ABEL
Occupations: Farmer and Shepherd
Reverence toward God: Faithless and Faithful
Worship: Self-centered and Faith-centered
God's Testimony: Murderer and Righteous

FAITHFUL ABEL (He being dead still speaks)
Genesis 4:3-4; Hebrews 11:4
Worshiped in faith
Obeyed God in faith
Live in faith (was steadfast)
He was righteous (Matt. 23:35; Heb. 11:4; 1 Jno. 3:12)
He was persecuted for his righteousness
His shed blood typifies the shed blood of Jesus Christ (Heb. 12:24)

THE WAY OF CAIN
Genesis 4:3-8; Jude 11; 1 John 3:11-12
The way of false worship
The way of faithlessness
The way of envy and jealously
The way of hatred
The way of murder

CAIN'S SIN
Genesis 4:5-15
His sin was chosen (deliberate), not forced
His murderous act was motivated by anger and hatred
His sin was seen by God
He was punished by God
The mark of Cain was a token of sin and a token of redemptive compassion

LESSONS FOR US
The lives and deeds of the dead can speak great lessons to us.
We are our brother's keeper.
God sees every work of faith and every work of sin.
It matters to God how we worship Him.
We can choose to not allow sin to rule over us.

CLASS DISCUSSION

1. Name as many points of contrast between Cain and Abel as you can.

2. Who was Cain "of" according to 1 John 3:12?

3. How are we our brother's keeper?

4. Using the example of Cain and Abel, answer the notion that man cannot keep from sinning.

5. Where did Cain go after murdering Abel? What was his spiritual condition?

6. Who was the first polygamist?

7. Through which child of Adam and Eve would the promised seed come?

8. According to Jude 11, who follows the way of Cain?