Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Genesis Chapters 4 to 6

In the story of Cain & Abel in Genesis 4, it is interesting that we are not told why the offering is not accepted by God, is it a random reason? Is it the attitude of the way the offering is given? Is it what is in each of their hearts when they give the offering? Is it because one was animal and another was plant based? We are not told and we almost can fill in our own ideas what the reason is that God accepted
Abel’s offering over Cain’s.

In the next section, the conversation between God and Cain is even more interesting, it discusses what is in the heart of Cain and the sin that is consuming him. Cain then goes and kills Abel, God asks Cain where Abel is, the following quotation is very important as it says the following:

God: "Where is your brother Abel?"
Cain: "I don't know," he replied. "Am I my brother's keeper?"

Cain is marked and goes to the land of Nod, at the East of Eden. How can the mark of Cain (sin) be lifted, we could see the mark as the sin that bears down on human beings? The answer is the Lord Jesus.

We see from further reading that Cain produces children; also Adam and Eve have another child Seth. In the Koran Sura 5 v26 to 31, the story of Cain & Abel is also mentioned, but what is given is slightly different version, where Abel is considered pious and gives a strange saying that follows:
Koran 5v26 "I would prefer you to take sole responsibility for both our sins and thus become a dweller of hell; this is what an unjust person deserves."
This to me is strange as it is not the same as “Am I my brother’s keeper”, which means we look after one another, Abel in this sense seems selfish and uncaring as he allows his brother to go to hell, also it says no man can be sacrificed for another’s sins, the sign that God wants to love us.
Genesis 5 is a genealogy between Adam and Noah; this mentions Enoch, who was carried up to heaven, which happened to Moses, Elijah and Jesus. The Book of Enoch, is an apocryphal text, it is accepted as part of the cannon by the Ethiopian Coptic Church. The date of the Book of Enoch being complied is given as about 3rd century BC by certain scholars, some fragments of the Book of Enoch were found at the Dead Sea Scrolls, dated to the 2nd century BC.

Hebrews 11 v5 references Enoch, which is taken from Genesis description and says about him, been taken to heaven. In Jude 1 v14 to 15, there are is a direct quote from the 1st Book of Enoch; this could mean that the book was a widely known work at the time, especially amongst Hebrew scholars and who was writing this epistle.

In Islam, Enoch is known as Idris and in the Koran he is mentioned twice in the following two verses Koran 19:56-57 and Koran 21:85-86, with the text saying he was a righteous man of God, this shows that the story of Enoch was being told all over the Middle East in the First Millennium, the interesting point to be made is that he is seen as one of the great men of God even though we have only a few lines in Genesis about him.

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