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4: Am I my Brother's Keeper

Posted by on Feb. 26, 2012 at 10:43 AM
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Genesis 4

 1And Adam knew Eve his wife: who conceived and brought forth Cain, saying: I have gotten a man through God.

    2And again she brought forth his brother Abel. And Abel was a shepherd, and Cain a husbandman.

    3And it came to pass after many days, that Cain offered, of the fruits of the earth, gifts to the Lord.

    4Abel also offered of the firstlings of his flock, and of their fat: and the Lord had respect to Abel, and to his offerings.

    5But to Cain and his offerings he had no respect: and Cain was exceedingly angry, and his countenance fell.

    6And the Lord said to him: Why art thou angry? and why is thy countenance fallen?

    7If thou do well, shalt thou not receive? but if ill, shall not sin forthwith be present at the door? but the lust thereof shall be under thee, and thou shalt have dominion over it.

    8And Cain said to Abel his brother: Let us go forth abroad. And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel, and slew him.

    9And the Lord said to Cain: Where is thy brother Abel? And he answered, I know not: am I my brother's keeper?

    10And he said to him: What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth to me from the earth.

    11Now, therefore, cursed shalt thou be upon the earth, which hath opened her mouth and received the blood of thy brother at thy hand,

    12When thou shalt till it, it shall not yield to thee its fruit: a fugitive and vagabond shalt thou be upon the earth.

    13And Cain said to the Lord: My iniquity is greater than that I may deserve pardon.

    14Behold thou dost cast me out this day from the face of the earth, and I shall be hidden from thy face, and I shall be a vagabond and a fugitive on the earth: everyone, therefore, that findeth me, shall kill me.

    15And the Lord said to him: No, it shall not be so: but whosoever shall kill Cain, shall be punished sevenfold. And the Lord set a mark upon Cain, that whosoever found him should not kill him.

    16And Cain went out from the face of the Lord, and dwelt as a fugitive on the earth, at the east side of Eden.

    17And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived, and brought forth Henoch: and he built a city, and called the name thereof by the name of his son Henoch.

    18And Henoch begot Irad, and Irad begot Maviael, and Maviael begot Mathusael, and Mathusael begot Lamech:

    19Who took two wives: the name of the one was Ada, and the name of the other was Sella.

    20And Ada brought forth Jabel: who was the father of such as dwell in tents, and of herdsmen.

    21And his brother's name was Jubal; he was the father of them that play upon the harp and the organs.

    22Sella also brought forth Tubalcain, who was a hammerer and artificer in every work of brass and iron. And the sister of Tubalcain was Noema.

    23And Lamech said to his wives Ada and Sell: Hear my voice, ye wives of Lamech, hearken to my speech: for I have slain a man to the wounding of myself, and a stripling to my own bruising.

    24Sevenfold vengeance shall be taken for Cain: but for Lamech seventy times sevenfold.

    25Adam also knew his wife again: and she brought forth a son, and called his name Seth, saying: God hath given me another seed, for Abel whom Cain slew.

    26But to Seth also was born a son, whom he called Enos; this man began to call upon the name of the Lord.

by on Feb. 26, 2012 at 10:43 AM
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laughing-matter
by look at me!! I'm new on Feb. 29, 2012 at 10:43 PM

 23

    24Sevenfold vengeance shall be taken for Cain: but for Lamech seventy times sevenfold.

 

I got lost at this point. Why would Lamech's vengeance be 'seventy times sevenfold'?

I've also never understood why god chose Abel's offerings over Cain's? Does the bible ever elaborate more on this story?

, hearken to my speech: for I have slain a man to the wounding of myself, and a stripling to my own bruising.Lamech said to his wives Ada and Sell: Hear my voice, ye wives of LamechAnd

shsteele05
by on Mar. 1, 2012 at 12:12 AM

This is in regard to Abel's offering vs. Cain's.

It has been my understanding that it had to do with the intent behind the offering. Abel seems to be offering out of love and duty. Cain seems to be offering out of obligation. God would rather an offering out of love and duty rather than just because we have to do it. Does that make sense.

As for the other question. I'm not sure. I would have to brush up on the context.

Sandy

LilyofPhilly
by Advanced Athiest on Mar. 1, 2012 at 7:44 AM

 14Behold thou dost cast me out this day from the face of the earth, and I shall be hidden from thy face, and I shall be a vagabond and a fugitive on the earth: everyone, therefore, that findeth me, shall kill me.

    15And the Lord said to him: No, it shall not be so: but whosoever shall kill Cain, shall be punished sevenfold. And the Lord set a mark upon Cain, that whosoever found him should not kill him.

    16And Cain went out from the face of the Lord, and dwelt as a fugitive on the earth, at the east side of Eden.

    17And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived, and brought forth Henoch: and he built a city, and called the name thereof by the name of his son Henoch.


Where did other people come from, that Cain was afraid would kill him? Where did his wife come from?

123Kathy
by sr debate team on Mar. 3, 2012 at 8:30 AM

Cain and Abel wasn't not only kids Adam and Eve had together. They had kids for around 1,000 years. God needed a blood line to our Savior. Adam and Eve had Seth. Seth leads to Jesus birth.


123Kathy
by sr debate team on Mar. 3, 2012 at 10:03 AM

It is hard to wrap my head about him killing his own brother. I can't believe he got so jealous he did this awful act.  Another thing I was thinking about. He thought he was going to get away with it too. He thought God really didn't care what he was doing. What caused him get so jealous? I believe mans heart are not nicest apart our bodies. The bible says all evil thoughts comes from our hearts.

Matthew 15:19 >>


For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander

Seems my heart needs be included too.  I would be thinking about something. Than eventually if I don't show any self control. I would just do all things are listed above. Jesus compare murder if you just say you hate your brother. 

.1 John 3:15
Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him

About other choices listed. I am not to perfect at all. I wish I would stop doing the stupidest things sometimes.

I feel only way we can fight the thoughts of evil. Is reading the bible. Also asking God for help. Awe, Why Me! UUGH! I really need a heart surgeon very bad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I look in the phone book, nothing for this problems was listed. Only the bible has the answers to stop the sinning.


123Kathy
by sr debate team on Mar. 3, 2012 at 10:08 AM


Quoting laughing-matter:

 23

    24Sevenfold vengeance shall be taken for Cain: but for Lamech seventy times sevenfold.

 

I got lost at this point. Why would Lamech's vengeance be 'seventy times sevenfold'?

I've also never understood why god chose Abel's offerings over Cain's? Does the bible ever elaborate more on this story?

, hearken to my speech: for I have slain a man to the wounding of myself, and a stripling to my own bruising.Lamech said to his wives Ada and Sell: Hear my voice, ye wives of LamechAnd

Maybe he seen would happened to Cain? He figured he is going be more trouble bacause he was warned. I am not sure anyways.


123Kathy
by sr debate team on Mar. 5, 2012 at 8:30 AM

I was thinking about how God looked at the brothers, Cain and Abel. Seems it how I look at my twins 3yr grand kids. I extremely love them. One is super good, always trying to follow the rules of the house. The other twin, he never tries to obeys the house rules at all. The love never changes, but how they are treated is differnt. One gets so many more rewards. The other one just gets lots of punishments. I just really hope he will change! I hope his Mom will figure out how to help him be good. Everybody knows good kids are rewarded.  He is super jealous because he sees his sister getting much more rewards them him. The behaviour doesn't not change the level of the Love at all. Why it takes so much longer to figure rewards are much better, when we obey the house rules. What is rules of God's house?              1-Love God first.                                                                                                                 2-Love yourself.                                                                                                                 3-Love others.

*Seems they should be easy to follow.

P.S. The twins father is not in the picture at all. So she really has her hands full all the time.


Thriftchick
by on Mar. 8, 2012 at 8:16 AM

he read their heart, sin had entered the earth and satan probably got to him and influenced him cauwe satan got jealous of GOD so i can see how it can happen

Quoting 123Kathy:


Quoting laughing-matter:

 23

    24Sevenfold vengeance shall be taken for Cain: but for Lamech seventy times sevenfold.


I got lost at this point. Why would Lamech's vengeance be 'seventy times sevenfold'?

I've also never understood why god chose Abel's offerings over Cain's? Does the bible ever elaborate more on this story?

, hearken to my speech: for I have slain a man to the wounding of myself, and a stripling to my own bruising.Lamech said to his wives Ada and Sell: Hear my voice, ye wives of LamechAnd

Maybe he seen would happened to Cain? He figured he is going be more trouble bacause he was warned. I am not sure anyways.


123Kathy
by sr debate team on May. 31, 2012 at 12:55 PM

I think it interesting nobody really wants to be there brother keeper. I have enough work taking care myself. We are selfish in nature. To take care somebody else would take my effort.  Than I can't do what I want to do. I like to spend my money on myself. Using my time for myself wants.

With God's help we can be more serving to others. We can grow and be product adults too.

Born again Christian, starts being be like baby, a child, teenager, and adult.   Hopefully later everybody will grow up. I still need learn few things too. Like I don't need my way all the time. I should seek God's will more often too.

Learning the fact the whole world just don't evolve  around me.


collectivecow
by Group Admin on Sep. 5, 2012 at 5:16 AM
1 mom liked this

Hebrew/English Translation with commentaries: Red text shows difference.
Not posting Hebrew in here, since it is a very long process with multi-languages.

1. Now the man knew his wife Eve, and she conceived and bore Cain, and she said, "I have acquired a man with the Lord."

Commentary:

Now the man knew:
[This took place], prior to the above episode, before he sinned and was banished from the Garden of Eden. Also the conception and the birth [took place before], for if it were written: וַיֵדַע אָדָם it would mean that after he had been banished, he had sons. [Sanh. 38b]

Cain: Hebrew קַיִן based on קָנִיתִי, I acquired.

2. And she continued to bear his brother Abel, and Abel was a shepherd of flocks, and Cain was a tiller of the soil.

Commentary:
a shepherd of flocks:
Since the ground was cursed, he refrained from working it.

3. Now it came to pass at the end of days, that Cain brought of the fruit of the soil an offering to the Lord.

Commentary:

of the fruit of the soil:
of the most inferior and there is an Aggadah that states that it was flaxseed [Targum Jonathan].
Another explanation: of the fruit From whatever came to his hand, not the best and not the choicest.

4. And Abel he too brought of the firstborn of his flocks and of their fattest, and the Lord turned to Abel and to his offering.

Commentary:
turned:
Hebrew וַיִשַׁע, and he turned.
Likewise, [verse 5]: וְאֶל מִנְחָתו ֹלֹא שָׁעָה means: And to his offering He did not turn.
Similarly, [Exod. 5:9]: וְאַל יִשְׁעוּ means: and let them not turn.
Similarly, [Job 14:6]: שְׁעֵה מֵעָלָיו means: turn away from him

5. But to Cain and to his offering He did not turn, and it annoyed Cain exceedingly, and his countenance fell.

6. And the Lord said to Cain, "Why are you annoyed, and why has your countenance fallen?

7. Is it not so that if you improve, it will be forgiven you? If you do not improve, however, at the entrance, sin is lying, and to you is its longing, but you can rule over it.

Commentary:
Is it not so that if you improve:
Its explanation is [if you improve your deeds.]
at the entrance sin is lying:
At the entrance of your grave, your sin is preserved.
and to you is it’s longing:
The evil inclination - which constantly longs and lusts to cause you to stumble.
but you can rule over it:
If you wish, you will overpower it. [Ekev 45, Kidd. 30b]

8. And Cain spoke to Abel his brother, and it came to pass when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and slew him.

9. And the Lord said to Cain, "Where is Abel your brother?" And he said, "I do not know. Am I my brother's keeper?"

Commentary:

Where is Abel your brother:
Perhaps he would repent and say “I killed him, and I sinned against You.” See above 3:9.
I do not know:
He acted as if he could deceive the Most High. [Rabbah 22:9]
Am I my brother’s keeper:
Hebrew הִשׁוֹמֵר This is a question asked in astonishment

10. And He said, "What have you done? Hark! Your brother's blood cries out to Me from the earth.

Commentary:
Your brother’s blood:
Hebrew דְמֵי the plural form. His blood and the blood of his descendants.
Another explanation: He inflicted many wounds upon him because he did not know from where his soul would depart.

11. And now, you are cursed even more than the ground, which opened its mouth to take your brother's blood from your hand.

Commentary:

even more than the ground:
Even more than [the earth] was already cursed for its iniquity, and also with this it continued to sin. As stated above [1:11], the iniquity was its failure to produce trees with the taste of the fruit.

12. When you till the soil, it will not continue to give its strength to you; you shall be a wanderer and an exile in the land.

13. And Cain said to the Lord, "Is my iniquity too great to bear?"

14. Behold You have driven me today off the face of the earth, and I shall be hidden from before You, and I will be a wanderer and an exile in the land, and it will be that whoever finds me will kill me."

15. And the Lord said to him, "Therefore, whoever kills Cain, vengeance will be wrought upon him sevenfold," and the Lord placed a mark on Cain that no one who find him slay him.

Commentary:

Therefore, whoever kills Cain:
This is one of the verses that speak briefly and hint but do not [fully] explain.“Therefore, whoever kills Cain” is a threat. So shall be done to him, or such-and-such shall be his punishment, but it does not delineate his punishment. [Rabbah 22:12]

vengeance will be wrought upon him sevenfold: I do not wish to wreak vengeance upon Cain now. At the end of seven generations, I will wreak My vengeance upon him, for Lemech, one of his grandchildren, will rise up and slay him. And the words שִׁבְעָתַיִם יֻקָם at the end of the verse, (after seven generations, vengeance will be wrought upon him) - refers to the avenging of Abel from Cain [Tan. Bereishith 11].

and the Lord placed a mark on Cain: He engraved a letter of His Name on his forehead.

whoever finds me will kill me: This refers to the cattle and the beasts, but there were yet no humans in existence whom he should fear, only his father and mother, and he did not fear that they would kill him. But he said, “Until now, my fear was upon all the beasts, as it is written [Gen. 9:2]: ‘And your fear’ but now, because of this iniquity, the beasts will not fear me, and they will kill me.” Immediately, “and the Lord gave Cain a sign.” He restored his fear upon everyone [ed. Guadalajara, 1476].

16. And Cain went forth from before the Lord, and he dwelt in the land of the wanderers, to the east of Eden.

Commentary:
And Cain went forth:
He went out with humility, as if to deceive the Most High.

to the east of Eden: There his father was exiled when he was driven out of the Garden of Eden, as it is said [3:24] “and He stationed at the east of the Garden of Eden to guard” the way of approach to the Garden, from which we can learn that Adam was there. And we find that the easterly direction always offers asylum for murderers, as it is said [Deut. 4:41]: “Then Moses separated [three cities of refuge] in the direction of the sunrise.“

17. And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived and bore Enoch, and he was building a city, and he called the city after the name of his son, Enoch.

18. And Irad was born to Enoch, and Irad begot Mehijael, and Mehijael begot Methushael, and Methushael begot Lemech.

19. And Lemech took himself two wives; one was named Adah, and the other was named Zillah.

Commentary:
And Lemech took himself two wives:
It was not necessary to elaborate on all this, but it did so to teach us from the end of the section that the Holy One, blessed be He, kept His promise when He said, “vengeance will be wrought upon Cain sevenfold,” and Lemech arose after he had begotten sons and raised the seventh generation, and he slew Cain.

two wives: So was the custom of the generation of the Flood, one [wife] for propagation and one for marital relations. The one who was for marital relations would be given a potion of roots to drink, so that she should become sterile (in some editions, the following does not appear) and he would adorn her like a bride and feed her delicacies, but her companion was neglected and was mourning like a widow. This is what Job explained [24:21]:“He feeds the barren woman who will not bear, but he does not adorn the widow.”

Adah: She was the one for propagation, called so because she was despicable to him and removed from him. עָדָה is the Aramaic translation of סוּרָה, turn away.

Zillah: She was the one for marital relations. So named because whe would always sit in his shadow (בְּצִלוֹ)

20. Now Adah bore Jabal; he was the father of those who dwell in tents and have cattle.

Commentary:

the father of those who dwell in tents and have cattle:
He was the first to pasture animals in uncultivated places and dwell in tents, one month here and one month here for the sake of his flocks. When the pasture in this place was depleted, he went and pitched his tent elsewhere.

21. And his brother's name was Jubal; he was the father of all who grasp a lyre and a flute.

22. And Zillah she too bore Tubal cain, who sharpened all tools that cut copper and iron, and Tubal cain's sister was Na'amah.

Commentary:

Tubal-cain:
He refined the craft of Cain. Tubal is related to the word spices. He spiced and refined Cain’s craft to make weapons for murderers [Rabbah 23:3].

Na’amah: She was Noah’s wife [Genesis Rabbah 23:3]

23. Now Lemech said to his wives, "Adah and Zillah, hearken to my voice; wives of Lemech, incline your ears to my words, for I have slain a man by wounding (him) and a child by bruising (him).

24. If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, then for Lemech it shall be seventy seven fold.

Commentary:

If Cain be avenged sevenfold:
Cain, who killed intentionally, was given an extension until seven generations. How much more should I, who have killed unintentionally, be given many times seven.

seventy-seven fold: An expression meaning many sevens is used here.

25. And Adam knew his wife again, and she bore a son, and she named him Seth, for God has given me other seed, instead of Abel, for Cain slew him.

26. And to Seth also to him a son was born, and he named him Enosh; then it became common to call by the name of the Lord.

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