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Genesis 4

See commentary, Rebellion and Obedience, Genesis 4-7     |     See Bible Dictionary

The birth, occupation, and offering of Cain and Abel

4:1 The man knew Eve his wife. She conceived, and gave birth to Cain, and said,

“I have gotten a man with Yahweh’s help.”

5729   One flesh
5733   Pregnancy

4:2 Again she gave birth, to Cain’s brother Abel. Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.

7785   Shepherd as occupation
4406   Agriculture

4:3 As time passed, it happened that Cain brought an offering to Yahweh from the fruit of the ground.

6155   Fall of Adam and Eve

4:4 Abel also brought some of the firstborn of his flock and of its fat. Yahweh respected Abel and his offering,

1055   God, grace and mercy
7435   Sacrifice in OT

4:5 but he didn’t respect Cain and his offering. Cain was very angry, and the expression on his face fell.

5150   Face
5964   Temper

4:6 Yahweh said to Cain,

“Why are you angry? Why has the expression of your face fallen?

4:7 If you do well, will it not be lifted up?
If you don’t do well, sin crouches at the door.
Its desire is for you, but you are to rule over it.”

6022   Sin, causes of

Cain murders his brother Abel

4:8 Cain said to Abel, his brother,

“Let’s go into the field.”
It happened when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel, his brother, and killed him.

5561   Suffering, nature of

4:9 Yahweh said to Cain,

“Where is Abel, your brother?”
He said,
“I don’t know.
Am I my brother’s keeper?”

5511   Safety

4:10 Yahweh said,

“What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood cries to me from the ground.

The curse of Cain

4:11 Now you are cursed because of the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand.

5167   Mouth

4:12 From now on, when you till the ground, it won’t yield its strength to you. You shall be a fugitive and a wanderer in the earth.”

5057   Rest, physical

4:13 Cain said to Yahweh,

“My punishment is greater than I can bear.

4:14 Behold, you have driven me out this day from the surface of the ground. I will be hidden from your face, and I will be a fugitive and a wanderer in the earth. It will happen that whoever finds me will kill me.”

5319   Fugitives

4:15 Yahweh said to him,

“Therefore whoever slays Cain, vengeance will be taken on him sevenfold.”
Yahweh appointed a sign for Cain, lest any finding him should strike him.

7346   Death penalty

4:16 Cain went out from Yahweh’s presence, and lived in the land of Nod, east of Eden.

Has a son called Enoch, and builds a city, which he calls after his name

4821   East
4:17 Cain knew his wife. She conceived, and gave birth to Enoch. He built a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch.
5256   City

His descendants, with Lamech and his two wives

4:18 To Enoch was born Irad. Irad became the father of Mehujael. Mehujael became the father of Methushael. Methushael became the father of Lamech.

4:19 Lamech took two wives: the name of the one was Adah, and the name of the other Zillah.

5732   Polygamy

4:20 Adah gave birth to Jabal, who was the father of those who dwell in tents and have livestock.

5427   Nomads

4:21 His brother’s name was Jubal, who was the father of all who handle the harp and pipe.

5421   Musical instruments

4:22 Zillah also gave birth to Tubal Cain, the forger of every cutting instrument of brass and iron. Tubal Cain’s sister was Naamah.

4303   Metals

4:23 Lamech said to his wives,

“Adah and Zillah, hear my voice.
You wives of Lamech, listen to my speech,
for I have slain a man for wounding me,
a young man for bruising me.

4:24 If Cain will be avenged seven times,
truly Lamech seventy-seven times.”

5496   Revenge, examples of

4:25 Adam knew his wife again. She gave birth to a son, and named him Seth,

“for God has appointed me another child instead of Abel, for Cain killed him.”

5729   One flesh

And Enosh

4:26 There was also born a son to Seth, and he named him Enosh.

Then men began to call on Yahweh’s name.

8640   Calling upon God

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