Cain and Abel

Study Notes

Memory Verse: Romans 5:8
Cain and Abel

- Today, we’re going to talk about different ways to relate to God! But first, let’s review some from the last lesson!
- What is sin? Disobeying God and choosing life without Him
- How did sin enter the world? Through Adam and Eve’s disobedience
- Why did Adam and Eve’s disobedience make everyone sinners? Because they were our first parents!
- Who is born a sinner? Every person is born a sinner! Every person needs to be born again by God!
- If people are sinners, how can people do life with God again? How can we be born again?
- You cant be born again by being born into a Christian family, and you also cant work your way into being born again! You become born again by receiving Jesus as our Savior! That’s all we have to do! Just receive Jesus! He went ahead of you and paid for everything else.

- Today, we are going to talk about coming to God
- One of the most important concepts to understand about coming to God is the idea of sacrifice.
- Sacrifice means to give something up for something greater. For example, if you really wanted to watch TV but your friend really needed help with homework, you could sacrifice watching TV (the less important thing) for showing and helping your friend (the more important thing). So what does sacrifice mean?
- To give up something for something greater!
- Because God is perfect and humans are born sinful, God taught humans how to offer up sacrifices to bridge the gap between God and man.
- There used to be all kinds of sacrifices in the Old Testament, and 5 main sacrifices: burnt offering, grain offering, peace offering, sin offering, and trespass offering.
- Remember that all 5 of these sacrifices were used to connect with God BEFORE Jesus was on earth.
- Let’s talk sacrifice POST Jesus in the next clip!

- Okay, so we just went through the pre-Jesus sacrifices.
- One of the most POWERFUL things about Jesus 31// is that He became the sacrifice for us on the cross 1 – we don't have to make any sacrifices to be right with God!! We just have to come into agreement with who Jesus is!
- Instead of having to make sacrifices to be one with God, we become living sacrifices after we receive the free gift of Jesus!
- Now that God lives within us, we bring Him glory from the inside out! As we receive God’s love, our hearts become full of worship and our lives become full of obedience to His Word. This is what the New Covenant sacrifice looks like!
- Romans 12:1 tells us to “present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship”.
- Hebrews 13 tells us that sacrifices after Jesus include doing good, sharing with others, and giving praise to God.
- Okay! Review time!
- How did people become right with God before Jesus? By giving God sacrifices!
- Who became the perfect sacrifice for us so that we can be one with God forever? Jesus!
- Can you name some examples the New Testament gives us of what sacrifices could look like now that God lives inside of us?
- Offering our bodies as a living sacrifice, doing good, sharing with others, and praising God!

- The conversation we just had about sacrifice takes us right into our memory verse for this lesson!
- Feel free to do hand motions with me!
- Romans 5:8 tells us that “God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Cross
- This verse shows us that God did not choose us because we did something right and God decided He loved us… no! God ALREADY loved us and gave up God the Son, to have us be completely one with Him again.
- Anything that tries to tell you that you have to earn God’s delight over you is a LIE! He already loves you! Nothing you could do would change that. But you DO have the choice to step into life with the God that created you and died for you.
- Let's say our memory verse again to help us remember it: Romans 5:8 “God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

- Let’s look back at what happened in the Garden. After Adam and Eve sinned, God led them out of the Garden.
- Then, He sent cherubim (special angels) to guard the way to the Tree of Life so that Adam and Eve wouldn't eat it and get stuck as humans that weren't perfect with God
- Adam and Eve had to figure out a new home for themselves.
- Adam had to work hard so that they would have food to eat.
- Thorns and weeds were now growing in the fields. This was so much harder than Eden!
- I bet they were so sad about how much harder life was because they chose life without God instead of life with God. I bet they wondered about how God was going to defeat the enemy that caused problems in their relationship with God.

- After Adam and Eve made their new home, God gave them a baby boy! They named him Cain.
- Just like God said, Eve experienced lots of pain when giving birth to Cain, but it was worth it when she saw the first baby ever! Later, God gave them another son named Able. Adam and Eve raised these boys, and they taught them about the plants and animals of the land.
- Cain must have liked working in the garden– He grew up to be a farmer!
- Able must have enjoyed looking after the little lambs– he grew up to be a shepherd.
- Because Adam and Eve sinned, Cain and Abel were born sinners, too. Like all sinners, they wanted their own way instead of God’s way, and so they probably fought selfishly like most siblings do.
- The Bible doesn't tell us how Cain and Abel learned about offering sacrifices, but it does say that they brought offerings to God!
- One day, Cain and Abel 35 both brought an offering to God. They might have both built altars from stones that looked like this!
- Genesis 4 tells us that Able brought an offering of the first of his animals to God. Cain brought some of his fruit off the ground.
- God loves when we give Him the first and best of what we have– whether it be the first of our day, the first of our money, or the first of our year!
- He knows it's best for our hearts to prioritize Him.
- They both gave God something, so God was pleased with both, right?
- Wait! Genesis 4:5 tells us that God did not look with favor on Cain’s sacrifice!
- Hebrews 11:4 tells us that “By faith FAITH Abel offered up a more excellent sacrifice than Cain”
- “By faith”? Hm. What does this mean? Why did “faith” make Able’s offering more powerful than Cain’s?
- Faith is a word that explains our relationship with God. Hebrews 11:1 says “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
- We can’t see our relationship with God, but we know it’s real. And when we live our whole lives from our relationship with God, by His Word and His Spirit, we can’t always see with our eyes what He’s doing!
- To live a life of faith, we have to trust that God knows what He’s doing, even when it makes no sense to us.
- So Able gave the first of his increase in faith– in a connected relationship with God. Cain, on the other hand, gave his offering 1) not from the firsts of his increase and 2) outside of a connected relationship with God.
- We see here that Cain was choosing his own way, but Able chose God’s way!
- Can you tell me what faith faith is? Relationship with God! God cares about this so much!

- Cain was NOT happy that God did not accept his offering, and he showed his bad attitude on his face.
- Sometimes when God wants to correct something about us, we get angry instead of being thankful that God cares about us.
- God comes to Cain and says “Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? If you do what is right, will you not be accepted?”
- Here, we see that God is willing to Father us through our mistakes. He was trying to invite Cain into connection with Him, even though Cain was the one that messed up!
- It’s like God was saying “You can’t go your own way, but I would love it if you would come my way”. He even warns him that sin wants to have him, but he must rule over it. We rule over sin by letting God lead us!
- Instead of accepting God’s invitation, Cain let sin rule over him. He lets himself become jealous of Able’s relationship with God, he gets into an argument with Able, and he kills him.
- How do you think God responded to the first murder ever?

- Okay, Cain just murdered his own brother, and we see God coming to Cain AGAIN!
- While you might think that God came to Cain angry, He actually comes to Father him through his mistake! Our God is so sweet and forgiving!
- When God asked Cain where his brother is, Cain lied to God instead of telling Him the truth.
- Even though God already knew the answer, God wanted to give Cain the chance to confess (or tell the truth), and let God heal his heart.
- Instead, Cain lied and chose to do life on his own instead of doing life with God.
- He didn't receive God’s invitation, so He received God’s judgment.
- God gave Cain consequences for his sins- he would have to leave home, wander the earth forever, and he wouldn't be able to grow fruits and vegetables as he had been.
- Instead of responding with sadness toward God, he got angry about God’s discipline. If our hearts are toward God, His discipline will draw us closer to Him. Instead, Cain let God’s discipline lead him away from the Father.
- Cain moved away from his family, had a baby with his wife, and built a city. This city was named after his son, instead of after God. The fall of the human race was only going deeper.

- These two alters show the ways that Cain and Abel chose to come to God.
- They both brought their offerings. What was the difference in their offerings?
- Only Able brought his offering in faith! Cain brought his offering under in the spirit of unbelief and works.
- Hebrews 11:6 tells us that faith pleases God! Relationship with Him is what He longs for more than anything else.
- Cain tried to earn connection with God, instead of receiving connection in his heart. Do you ever do this– i know i do! Maybe by going to church, giving money to the hurting, helping others, or praying to God? While all of these things are good things, they aren't where our connection comes from! They aren't what brings the forgiveness of sins in our lives.
- If we cant work our way toward God, how in the world can we experience closeness with Him?

- Today, when we want to come to God, we don't have to bring any offering or sacrifice. Jesus became our sacrifice on the cross 1. We simply put our faith in Jesus, and He makes us clean! The blood of Jesus brings us near to God so that we can be one with God.
- This reminds me of our memory verse! Do you remember what it was? Romans 5:8 “God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
- Think back to the two times God approached Cain even though Cain was in sin.
- Do you remember the first time? Yeah, when Cain 46 offered a sacrifice with an unfaithful, disconnected heart! Point to Cains alter
- And the second time? Yep, after Cain killed his own brother, Able! 47
- In both of these examples, we see God coming toward Cain while his heart was in a sinful space. This shows us that God comes to us because He loves us, not because we have done anything to deserve it.
- This story of Cain and Able shows us that 1) God really wants us to do life in relationship with Him, not out of empty works and 2) that God is really kind to us, even when we fall short. Consequences are real, but His mercy is even more real!

It’s important to declare out loud what is true about God! It helps our heart come into line with
what our minds understand! Say these things to God from your heart with me!
- God, I dont have to offer up any animals or firstfruits to be right with you. I simply get to receive the life of Your Son, Jesus, and I am made one with You!
- I don’t do good works to make You happy with me. I do good works because You’re happy with me!
- Because of our love, I get to offer my life as a living sacrifice to You.
- You dont care as much about what I give to You, but about how I give to You! You want to be priority in everything, and you want me to give through my relationship with You.
- If I sin, You draw near to me! You don’t run away from me. You love Fathering me into abundant life.

- I overcome sin through my relationship with Jesus!

Is there anything you’ve been doing because you think God is not happy with you? If you have received Jesus in your heart, rest in the Truth that HE makes things right between you and God. Instead of working to make God happy, receive His love and watch how that changes your heart!

We are including Sara's notes for complete transparency for parents.

Continue Reading
Next Episode