These chapters are all about family. But before we get to the genealogy section of this part of the text, we find the first the Bible’s first recorded murder. Most of us have been involved in sibling rivalry. There is more to this story than that. We find the eventual effects of choices (again) and begin to see some of the pathology involved in those choices. And hopefully we can even identify areas that we are prone to those same tendencies… not to load ourselves up with guilt, but hopefully to begin preventing negative choices.
Here are a few questions to stimulate your thinking as you read:
1. Why do you think God was pleased with one offering and displeased with the other?
2. Why did Cain kill Abel?
3. How would you have answered the question asked of Cain in 4:9?
4. In what ways is God merciful to Cain even in His justice?
5. In addition to murder, what other firsts are found in chapter 4?
6. Why do you think the Bible includes this account of ancestry?