Weekly Devotional 4-15-19 Why Did God Reject Adam and Eve’s Attempt and Cain’s Offering
Why Did God Reject Adam and Eve’s attempt, and Cain’s Offering?
Genesis chapter three. “1Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, ‘Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?’’ 2And the woman said to the serpent, ‘We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; 3but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’ 4Then the serpent said to the woman, ‘You will not surely die. 5For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’ 6So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. 7Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings. 8And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 9Then the Lord God called to Adam and said to him, ‘Where are you? 10So he said, ‘I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself. 11And He (the Lord) said, ‘Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?’ 12Then the man said, ‘The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.’ 13And the Lord God said to the woman, ‘What is this you have done? The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.’ 14 So the Lord God said to the serpent: ‘Because you have done this, You are cursed more than all cattle, And more than every beast of the field; On your belly you shall go, And you shall eat dust All the days of your life. 15And I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, And you shall bruise His heel.’ 16To the woman He said: ‘I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; In pain you shall bring forth children; Your desire shall be for your husband, And he shall rule over you.’ 17Then to Adam He said, ‘Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, You shall not eat of it: Cursed is the ground for your sake; In toil you shall eat of it All the days of your life. 18Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, And you shall eat the herb of the field. 19In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread Till you return to the ground, For out of it you were taken; For dust you are, And to dust you shall return.’20And Adam called his wife’s name Eve, because she was the mother of all living. 21Also for Adam and his wife the Lord God made tunics of skin, and clothed them. 22Then the Lord God said, ‘Behold, the man has become like one of Us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put out his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever’– 23therefore the Lord God sent him out of the garden of Eden to till the ground from which he was taken.”
Adam and Eve covered their nakedness with fig leaves, but God covered them with the skin of an animal. Why did God do this, was not the covering of fig leaves enough? Yes and No! Fig leaves were enough in covering their physical nakedness, but it was not enough in the covering of their sin. Upon sinning, they became different than when created. Before sinning, the Lord walked in fellowship with them (v.8), but because there can be no fellowship between holy God and righteousness man (See 2nd Corinthians 6:14-17), their sin had to be covered to reestablish that fellowship. However, even being covered by the skins of the slain animal would not in itself have been enough. It was what preceded that action, the slaying of the animal, the shedding of its blood. The writer of the Book of Hebrews, by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, affirms this by writing, “without the shedding of blood there is no remission” (9:22b). The covering of the animal skin was made possible by Lord God sacrificing the animal. A sacrifice of the innocent for the forgiveness of the guilty. Long before He created the world, God had purposed that He, as the Son of God, would be sacrificed for man’s redemption (See Revelation 13:8; Colossians 1:20-22; Hebrews 10:1-14). The animal that was slain to obtain its skin for the covering of Adam and Eve’s sin was a foreshadowing of what God had purposed to do from the beginning of the world. This is why God rejected Cain’s offering and accepted Abel’s offering (Genesis 4:1-5). Cain rejected God’s atonement and offered that which was not acceptable. It was a willful rejection. Consider for instance Hebrews 11: 4, “By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks.” Abel was righteous because of his sacrifice. He saw himself as a guilty sinner in need of God’s provision. He understood what God had done on the behalf of his parents, that God had rejected their religion (attempted covering) and provided the only acceptable covering for sin, which is the shedding of the righteous substitute’s blood. Cain was unrighteous because of his rejection of this truth and offered an offering (a bloodless offering) that was not acceptable.
The apostle Paul understood this, and in his letter to the Romans wrote, “1Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved. 2For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. 3For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God. 4For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. 5For Moses writes about the righteousness which is of the law, ‘The man who does those things shall live by them.’ 6But the righteousness of faith speaks in this way, ‘Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’’ (that is, to bring Christ down from above) 7or, ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’ (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). 8But what does it say? ‘The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart’ (that is, the word of faith which we preach): 9that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11For the Scripture says, ‘Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.’ 12For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. 13For whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Many today religiously try to please God, but according to Scripture that is not possible. Man’s sin can only be forgiven by believing in and committing to God’s provision, the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Doing this, a person becomes pleasing to God.
Scripture usage is from the NKJB