REMORSE VS. REPENTANCE
Genesis 4:2 - 8 (NASB)
2Again, she gave birth to his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of flocks, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.
3So it came about in the course of time that Cain brought an offering to the LORD of the fruit of the ground. 4Abel, on his part also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of their fat portions. And the LORD had regard for Abel and for his offering;
5but for Cain and for his offering He had no regard. So Cain became very angry and his countenance fell.
6Then the LORD said to Cain, “Why are you angry? And why has your countenance fallen?
7“If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted up? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it.”
8Cain told Abel his brother. And it came about when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him.
- Cain murdering Abel wasn’t motivated by sudden passion; it was carefully premeditated. Cain murdered his own brother out of envy and hatred. Furthermore, Cain did it after being at the altar to worship God and in spite of God’s warning and promise. Finally, Cain took it all very lightly and tried to lie his way out of it. (Jude 11)
- Apparently, true and proper worship was taught by God to man: Gen. 3:21
God accepted Abel and his sacrifice indicated by consuming the animals with fire from Heaven. (Lev. 9:24)
God rejected Cain and his sacrifice. Cain wasn’t rejected because of his offering (Lev.2), but his offering was rejected because of Cain: his heart wasn’t right with God. ” (1 Sam. 15:22)
It was “by faith” that Abel offered a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain (Heb. 11:4), which means that he had faith in God and was right with God.
Ephesians 4:31 - 32 (NASB) 31Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 32Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.
- The fact that people attend religious meetings and participate in church activities is no proof that they’re true believers. It’s possible to have “a form of godliness” but never experience its saving power (2 Tim. 3:5).
- “These people come near to Me with their mouth and honor Me with their lips, but their hearts are far from Me” (Isa. 29:13; Matt. 15:8). The most costly sacrifices apart from the submission of the heart can never make the worshiper right before God (Ps. 51:16-17). “The way of Cain” is the way of self-will and unbelief.