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The Good Seed - Monday, June 19, 2017
by GBV Dillenburg GmbH

By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.
Hebrews 11:4

You probably know the report of Cain and Abel that is found on the first pages of the Bible (cf. Genesis 4:1-10). Both brought an offering for God. Cain, the market gardener, gave of the fruit of his land, whereas, his brother Abel, the shepherd, sacrificed an animal from the firstborn of his flock.
We naturally think that both the farmer and shepherd gave of their best, assuming that God does not demand from us what we do not possess. The main consideration is: we are sincere. The opinion that whoever tries his hardest will be redeemed is widespread. It is, however, incorrect.
What we have perhaps overlooked is what constituted the difference between the two offerings. But God was aware of it. “The LORD respected Abel and his offering, but he did not respect Cain and his offering” (Genesis 4:4-5). Today’s text from the epistle to the Hebrews tells us that Abel’s sacrifice was “more excellent”. He brought it through faith, not because he was a shepherd.
Sincerity, which Cain incidentally could not even claim for himself, is insufficient. Had he not heard from his parents how God had clothed them with tunics of skin after their sin? Did the death of the creature that had to die for the tunics mean nothing to him? We see that dealing in sincerity can also be principally wrong.
Abel, by contrast, had the faith to rely on the sacrificed
Today’s reading: Acts 7:20-42


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