Cain and Abel – Gospel in Life

Cain and Abel

Tim Keller |  July 12, 1998

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  • Sin
Genesis 4:1-16
RS 294-06

A Lesson from Cain and Abel

The story of Cain and Abel in the Bible teaches us three important things. Firstly, it shows us how serious sin is through Cain’s harmful jealousy. Secondly, it highlights how merciful God is, even when Cain makes a big mistake. Finally, it tells us how important it is to make sacrifices, like Abel did, shaping our understanding of God and our relationship with Him.

1. The Big Deal about Sin

Sin can be sneaky, often hiding in our lives without us realizing. If we ignore or dismiss it, it can lead to harmful consequences. It’s important to recognize and address these hidden sins, as they can negatively impact our lives. Having Christian friends to help us see these hidden sins from different perspectives is really helpful. They encourage us to face our sins, understand their seriousness, and seek to make things right.

2. The Kindness of God

God’s loving nature is clear when He interacts with Cain. He steps in early and acts more like a counselor than a judge. Even when Cain doesn’t say sorry, God’s mercy is shown through His protection and care. This shows His desire for justice and mercy to go hand in hand. It challenges us, as Christians, to act like God when dealing with wrongdoing – with love and kindness. It also reassures us that God’s mercy is available to everyone, no matter what they’ve done in the past.

3. The Importance of Sacrifice

Abel’s offering to God was a response of faith to God’s kindness, while Cain tried to earn God’s favor through his own sacrifices. When God didn’t favor him, Cain got angry, thinking God owed him something, which led to bitterness and self-righteousness. To avoid this, we should be like Jesus, who willingly gave himself up for us. By understanding Jesus’ love for us, we can become more loving and gracious people.



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