And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD.
And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering:
But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.
 

4:3 process of time. Literally, “at the end of the days,” undoubtedly a reference to the “seventh day,” which God had hallowed as a day of rest and blessing (Genesis 2:3). On such a day, men would follow God’s example in ceasing from their regular labors in order to have fellowship with God, possibly meeting with Him at the entrance to Eden (Genesis 3:24).

4:3 an offering. Such fellowship, however, required that worshipers approach God with an offering that would make them suitable for His presence. Adam and Eve no doubt had instructed their sons that this required a substitutionary sacrifice of innocent blood (Genesis 3:21). Cain, however, chose to bring another type of offering on this occasion.

4:4 Abel. Abel was a man of faith, the first listed in the chapter of faith (Hebrews 11). Since he brought a “by faith...a more excellent sacrifice” (Hebrews 11:4), it is evident that God had given instruction concerning the sacrifice, which Abel believed and obeyed. The Lord Jesus described him as “righteous” (Matthew 23:35) and even as one of God’s prophets (Luke 11:50,51).

4:5 his countenance fell. Cain’s anger reflects pride in his own works which, because of that very fact, God regarded as “evil” (I John 3:12).


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