Everyone makes wrong decisions. The only people that don’t make mistakes are those that don’t do anything. After killing his brother Abel, Cain’s story could have turned out much differently. It could have been a tale tracing the greatest sorrow, a dramatic repentance, an inspiring tale of great change and redemption that comes from turning to God. How forgiveness is possible for all who will seek it.
It could have been that way.
Instead, Cain chose a different path, joining with the ‘murderer from the beginning’ in the dark covenant- a decision that metastasized and eventually led to the destruction of nearly everything.
Psalm 37:32- The wicked watcheth the righteous, and seeketh to slay him.
It is impossible to know what Satan promised Cain in return for his treachery- but a deal with the devil always requires rejection of God- and we can clearly see that Cain had been completely turned against the Lord.
Proverbs 28:5 Evil men understand not judgment: but they that seek the LORD understand all things.
From Genesis 4:9-15 -God, who knows full well what has happened, gives Cain the opportunity to acknowledge his terrible deed; a chance to confess- the first step in repentance, the first step back.
“Where is Abel, your brother?”
“I don’t know” Cain lied. And then, in a response that any parent would rebuke as ‘talking back’, and revealing his contempt for the Lord, he infamously pops off “Am I my brothers keeper?”
Think of the callousness and evil in the question- the killer asks ‘Am l responsible for what happened to him?’
No more playing around with Cain- “What have you done? Your brothers blood cries to me from the ground!”
No response. Crickets, as we say.
The Lord then told Cain because he had rejected God, he would be separated. He would no longer receive the Lords’ blessings in his labors- farming will now be a disappointing, futile effort.
Further, he was now known for his deed, and he would be persona non grata wherever he thought to settle- ‘a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth.’
Was Cain beginning to get the picture now- starting to see how serious this was to the Lord? Hardly. “Seems a little harsh” he whines.
“I can’t stay here, I can’t farm, nobody will hire me. People will say- look at the killer Cain- let’s get him, we should kill him before he tries to kill one of us eh?”
The Lord can see Cain is too blinded by darkness to reason with further. “Whoever kills Cain will get sevenfold vengeance” is Cain’s promise from the Lord. (Number symbolism is sometimes used in the Bible- seven is the number of perfection and completion- ‘sevenfold vengeance’ means the Lord will avenge his murder, should it occur, perfectly.)
As if he deserved such a reassurance.
God showed Cain that all the things he believed and assumed about God were lies. That his friend, Satan, was a liar- the father of all lies.
Proverbs 14:2 He that walketh in his uprightness feareth the LORD: but he that is perverse in his ways despiseth him.
The Lord then puts a mark upon Cain and sends him on his way. We don’t know what the mark was exactly, but it was something visible to others. It was not to punish or remind Cain, but as a warning to others: Vengeance belongs to the Lord, and He will repay (Romans 12:19- Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.)
Cursed, marked, and casted out, the Lord tells Cain his lot is to be a fugitive and a vagabond, a nomad- so that he wouldn’t stay in one place and influence others with his evil doctrines: Cain responds by settling east of Eden and building a city (4:17)
A city founded by a rebellious murderer who was told not to build a city. Godless, lawless. What sort of ethics, culture, and civility was likely found there? A city of thugs, gang-bangers, war lords, and pimps. It was probably part Vegas, part Bangkok, part New Orleans with a little Pyong Yang and Mogadishu thrown in. Think Sodom and Gomorrah.
And we see that the dark covenant thrived and grew.
Six generations later, we meet Cain’s great great great great grandson- Lamech.
From Genesis 4:18-24– Lamech is the first polygamist mentioned in the Bible. He calls his two wives one day, and reveals to them the dark covenant, and both warns and boasts: “I killed a man who tried to wound me, and another young man who thought to hurt me. The Lord that cursed our father Cain promised seven fold vengeance for his life;
Hear my voice: My master will avenge me seventy and seven fold.”
A dark covenant- where murder rules and is protected. A covenant that claims to be more powerful and vengeful than God. A blasphemous and rebellious group of Satan worshippers has descended from the murderer Cain. And we read that Lamech’s sons are prominent leaders in the burgeoning cult.
Meanwhile, back to where our story began, in a world where darkness has struck hard- Cain and Abel are gone- there is a new hope.
Adam and Eve have a new son. And in the first prophecy- Eve proclaims that the new arrival, Seth- would lead the righteous and would take up where Abel had been ended.
And as this chapter closes, Seth has had a son- Enos. The new hope grows as we are told in Enos’ time, men began to ‘call upon the name of the Lord.’ (4:26)
Romans 10:13- For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Titus 3:3- For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.
No matter how far we have fallen, our Savior Jesus Christ has provided a way out. If we choose to stay away from God, things get worse. We grow farther and farther from God. We start to believe crazy things. We think good things are bad, bad things are good. Like Cain, we begin to love the darkness.
John 1:5- And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.
John 3:19- And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
We see SO many that love darkness. Tragic. We see many that have ignored good things and loved wrong things so long- their comprehension and conscience are warped. This is a dangerous place to get into.
Psalm 116:13- I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the Lord.
To escape the darkness you are in, call upon the name of the Lord. To stay in the Light and love of God- call upon the name of the Lord. In all things, call upon Him. If you call upon Him- you will be saved.