“Cain became very angry and looked resentful. The LORD said to Cain, “Why are you angry, and why do you look so resentful? If you do the right thing, won’t you be accepted? But if you don’t do the right thing, sin will be waiting at the door ready to strike! It will entice you, but you must rule over it.” -Genesis 4:5b-7 (Common English Bible)


My congregation, Fourth Presbyterian Church, is reading through the Bible in 2012. You can learn more about Fourth Church’s endeavor here: Reading the Bible in a Year.

This post is part of the CEB Blog Tour. Each week I can give away a free softcover copy of the Common English Bible. Comment on this post and I’ll enter your name into a drawing to receive this week’s free copy.

John W. Vest

John is a "church hacker" attempting to overcome the limitations of church as we know it. To connect with him and learn more about his work, please visit johnvest.com.

Reader Interactions


  1. A story to remember as we consider how we relate to our brothers in the denomination.

  2. This passage brings a lot of questions to my mind. As I was reading from the beginning of the chapter I wondered, “why did God like Abel’s offering more than Cain’s?” My gut reaction was that God was pretty unfair because both sacrifices seemed appropriate for the labor each brother gave. After I thought about it more though, I wonder what each brother’s intent or motive was behind the sacrifice. Was Cain’s sacrifice just out of obligation? Was Abel’s sacrifice out of love for his Creator? Was God testing Cain? There seem to be a lot of unanswered questions at the beginning of the passage. I am not sure I came up with any answers I liked.

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