Friday, January 2, 2009

Unending Grace

Today's Daily Soap {Scripture | Observation | Application | Prayer}

8 Cain had words with his brother. They were out in the field; Cain came at Abel his brother and killed him. 

9 God said to Cain, "Where is Abel your brother?" 

He said, "How should I know? Am I his babysitter?" 

10-12 God said, "What have you done! The voice of your brother's blood is calling to me from the ground. From now on you'll get nothing but curses from this ground; you'll be driven from this ground that has opened its arms to receive the blood of your murdered brother. You'll farm this ground, but it will no longer give you its best. You'll be a homeless wanderer on Earth." 

13-14 Cain said to God, "My punishment is too much. I can't take it! You've thrown me off the land and I can never again face you. I'm a homeless wanderer on Earth and whoever finds me will kill me." 

15 God told him, "No. Anyone who kills Cain will pay for it seven times over." God put a mark on Cain to protect him so that no one who met him would kill him. GENESIS 4:8-15 [MSG]

God protects us, even when we cause harm to others.

It was the first murder in history. Cain slew his brother Abel over jealousy: jealous that Abel had offered a more pleasing sacrifice to God than he could.

After their parents had ruined paradise for all mankind , Cain and Abel were forced to work the fields and raise livestock. One would think that a lesson had been learned.

But the "blindness" that had been erased when Adam and Eve disobeyed God opened Cain's eyes to jealousy. And Cain responded with evil: murder.

Cain, like his parents, then hid from God. Like the broad side of a barn, Cain hid from God. Yeah, right.

God punished Cain by banishing him forever. He sent him to No-man's land, told him that the earth would no longer yield its best crops to Cain. But benevolent and forgiving as our God is, He protected Cain -- history's first murderer. God marked Cain so that no one would kill him, and promised to punish anyone who did kill him. To punish them severely.

Our God is truly an awesome God. He clothes us. He protects us. And yet, we continue to fail him.

I want to serve You, Father. I want to praise and worship You all of my days. Though I'm unworthy by own merit, I know that You will always protect and provide for me, just as You always have. Thank You, Father.

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