Crouching Desire, Hidden Deathtrap

As sons and daughters of Adam, all of us like Cain, are subject to the temptations of sin. But unlike Cain we must learn to master it. God never commands us to do something without also giving us the wherewithal and strength to do it. The victory Jesus Christ won for us through His death, burial and resurrection defeated death, sin and their agent the devil. The devil may come to steal, kill and destroy but Jesus came that we might have a victorious and abundant life. (John 10:10)

Temptation often happens as it did with Cain when we make ourselves vulnerable to it through wrong or selfish choices. As a result we put ourselves in a precarious situation where sin literally crouches at our door waiting to pounce. Cain cut corners with his offering by trying to pass off seconds to God while keeping the first fruits of his crops for himself. His half-hearted and hypocritical worship of God opened the door for jealousy and anger toward his brother, Abel. Abel had offered the best of the fruit of his labors to God, the firstborn from his flock. (Genesis 4:3-5)

In a loving intervention, God warns Cain that he must deal with the sin issues in his heart lest they open the door to its ravages. This warning is echoed in the New Testament writings of Peter. “Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8 NIV)

One of the greatest deterrents to sin is stopping to consider the death and destruction it wrecks upon both the sinner and others whom his/her sin affects. That is the essence of the appeal that God was making to Cain. He was saying to Cain, and also by the Holy Spirit is saying to all of us, “Stop a minute and get a grip on your self. Think about the unfolding consequences of this sinful attitude and action if it is allowed to play itself out! You are opening the door to death!”

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