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on the preceding chapter. place where pure spirits alone could dwell. Yet in prevent the extension of its contagion. If men, now the midst of wrath God remembers mercy, and a pro- so greatly multiplied on the earth, and fertile in mismise of redemption from this degraded and cursed state chievous inventions, were permitted to live nearly a is made to them through HIM who, in the fulness of thousand years, as in the ancient world, to mature and time, is to be made flesh, and who, by dying for the perfect their infectious and destructive counsels, what sin of the world, shall destroy the power of Satan, a sum of iniquity and ruin would the face of the earth and deliver all who trust in the merit of his sacrifice present! Even while they are laying plans to extend from the power, guilt, and nature of sin, and thus the empire of death, God, by the very means of death prepare them for the celestial Paradise at the right itself, prevents the completion of their pernicious and hand of God. Reader, hast thou repented of thy sin? diabolic designs. Thus what man, by his wilful obstifor often hast thou sinned after the similitude of thy nacy does not permit grace to correct and restrain, ancestor's transgression. Hast thou sought and found God, by his sovereign power, brings in death to conredemption in the blood of the Lamb ? Art thou saved trol. It is on this ground that wicked and blood-thirsty from a disposition which led thy first parents to trans- men live not out half their days; and what a mercy gress ? Art thou living a life of dependence on thy to the world that it is so ! They who will not submit Creator, and of faith and loving obedience to him who to the sceptre of mercy shall be broken in pieces by died for thee? Wilt thou live under the curse, and the rod of iron. Reader, provoke not the Lord to die eternally? God forbid! Return to him with all displeasure; thou art not stronger than he. Grieve thy soul, and receive this exhortation as a call from not his Spirit, provoke him not to destroy thee; why his mercy.
shouldst thou die before thy time? Thou hast sinned
much, and needest every moment of thy short life to To what has already been said on the awful con- make thy calling and election sure. Shouldst thou tents of this chapter, I can add little that can either provoke God, by thy perseverance in iniquity, to cut set it in a clearer light, or make its solemn subject thee off by death before this great work is done, better more impressive. We see here that by the subtlety for thee thou hadst never been born! and envy of the devil sin entered into the world, and How vain are all attempts to attain immortality death by sin ; and we find that death reigned, not anly here! For some thousands of years men have been from Adam to Moses, but from Moses to the present labouring to find out means to prevent death ; and some day. How abominable must sin be in the sight of have even boasted that they had found out a medicine God, when it has not only defaced his own image from capable of preserving life for ever, by resisting all the the soul of man, but has also become a source of natu- attacks of disease, and incessantly repairing all the ral and moral evil throughout every part of the globe! wastes of the human machine. That is, the alchyDisruption and violence appear in every part of na- mistic philosophers, wonld have the world to believe ture; vice, profligacy, and misery, through all the that they had found out a private passage to the tree tribes of men and orders of society. It is true that of immortality ; but their own deaths, in the common where sin hath abounded, there grace doth much more order of nature, as well as the deaths of the millions abound; but men shut their eyes against the light, and which make no such pretensions, are not only a suffiharden their hearts against the truth. Sin, which be- cient confutation of their baseless systems, but also a comes propagated into the world by natural generation, continual proof that the cherubim, with their flaming growing with the growth and strengthening with the swords, are turning every way to keep the passage of strength of man, would be as endless in its duration, the tree of life. Life and immortality are, however, as unlimited in its influence, did not God check and brought to light by the Gospel ; and he only who keeprestrain it by his grace, and cut off its extending influ-eth the sayings of the Son of God shall live for ever. ence in the incorrigibly wicked by means of death. Though the body is dead—consigned to death, because How wonderful is the economy of God! That which of sin, yet the spirit is life because of righteousness ; entered into the world as one of the prime fruits and and on those who are influenced by this Spirit of effects of sin, is now an instrument in his hands co I righteousness, the second death shall have no power,
The birth, trade, and religion of Cain and Abel, 1-7. Cain murders his brother Abel, 8. God calls him
into judgment for it, 9, 10. He is cursed, 11, 12. He despairs, 13, 14. A promise given him of preservation, and a mark set on him to prevent his being killed, 15. He departs from God's presence, 10. llas a son whom he calls Enoch ; and builds a city, which he calls after his name, 17. Cain has several children, among whom are Lamech, the first bigamist, 18, 19. Jabal, who taught the use of tents and feeding cattle, 20. Jubal, the inventor of musical instruments, 21. Tubal-cain, the inventor of smithwork, 22. Strange speech of Lamech to his wives, 23, 24. Seth born to Adam and Eve in the place of Abel, 25. Enoch born, and the worship of God restored, 26.
A. M. 2. B. C. 4003.
A. M. cir. 129.
Cain and Abel born.
They present offerings.
ND Adam knew Eve his wife ;/ 3 And in process of time it came
and she conceived, and bare to pass, that Cain brought of the * Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD. the LORD.
4 And Abel, he also brought of the first2 And she again bare his brother - Abel. lings of his h flock, and of the fat thereof. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain And the Lord had i respect unto Abel and to was " a tiller of the ground.
a That is, gotten or acquired.- b Heb. Hebel.
- Heb. a
d Chap. iji. 23; ix. 20. - Heb. at the end of days. -Num. feeder, ver. 25, 29 ; 1 John ji. 10, 12, 15; Psa. cxxvii. 3; xviii. 12. - Num. xviii. 17; Prov. Mi. 9. ch Heb. sheep or John viii. 44.
i Heb. xi. 4.
NOTES ON CHAP. IV.
ple. It appears to have consisted of two parts : 1.
suppose that also brought, 817 DI 4'377 hebi gam hu, should be 77107' ng eth Yehovah, The Lord, is an elliptical form translated, Abel brought it also, i. e. a minchah or of expression for 717' nxo meeth Yehovah, FROM THE gratitude offering ; and beside this he brought of the Lord, or through the Divine blessing.
first-born (917 mibbechoroth) of his flock, and it was Verse 2. And she again bare his brother Abel.] by this alone that he acknowledged himself a sinner, Literally, She added to bear (0755 9001 valloseph and professed faith in the promised Messiah. To this laledeth) his brother. From the very face of this ac- circumstance the apostle seems evidently to allude, count it appears evident that Cain and Abel were twins. Heb. xi. 4 : By Faith Abel offered thelova tvorav, a In most cases where a subject of this kind is intro- MORE or greater sacrifice; not a more excellent, (for duced in the Holy Scriptures, and the cnccessive births this is no meaning of the word ithelwv,) which leads of children of the same parents are noted, the acts of us to infer, according to Dr. Kennicott, that Abel, beconceiving and bringing forth are mentioned in refer- sides his minchah or gratitude offering, brought also ence to each child; here it is not said that she con- Dvora, u victim, to be slain for his sins; and this he ceived and brought forth Abel, but simply she added to chose out of the first-born his flock, which, in the bring forth Abel his brother ; that is, as I understand order of God, was a representation of the Lamb of it, Cain was the first-born, Abel, his twin brother, came God that was to take away the sin of the world; and
what confirms this exposition more is the observation Abel was a keeper of sheep] Adam was originally of the apostle : God testifying tous dwpors, of his gifts, a gardener, Abel a shepherd, and Cain an agriculturist which certainly shows he brought more than one. Acor farmer. These were the three primitive employ- cording to this interpretation, Cain, the father of Deism, ments, and, I may add, the most rational, and conse- not acknowledging the necessity of a vicarious sacriquently the best calculated to prevent strife and an fice, nor feeling his need of an atonement, aocording immoderate love of the world.
to the dictates of his natural religion, brought a minVerse 3. In process of time] O'D' ppmikkets chah or eucharistic offering to the God of the universe. yamim, at the end of days. Some think the anniver- Abel, not less grateful for the produce of his fields and sary of the creation to be here intended; it is more the increase of his flocks, brought a similar offering, probable that it means the Sabbath, on which Adam and by adding a sacrifice to it paid a proper regard to and his family undoubtedly offered oblations to God, the will of God as far as it had then been revealed, as the Divine worship was certainly instituted, and no acknowledged himself a sinner, and thus, deprecating doubt the Sabbath properly observed in that family. the Divine displeasure, showed forth the death of Christ This worship was, in its original institution, very sim- 1 till he came. Thus his offerings were accepted, while
Cain's offering is rejected.
CHAP. IV. .
God reasons with him. A. M. cir. 129.
5 But unto Cain and to his offer- 7 If thou doest well, shalt thoù A. M. cir. 129. B. C. cir. 3875.
B. C. cir. 3875. ing he had not respect. And Cain not be accepted ? and if thou was very wroth, * and his countenance fell. doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And
6 And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt thou wroth ? and why is thy countenance rule over him. fallen?
8 And Cain talked with Abel his brother
Chap. xxxi. 2; Num. xvi. 15; Isa. iii. 10, ll; Psalm Or, have the excellency; Heb. xi. 4; Prov. xxi. 27 ; Job xxix. 4.
Or, subject unto thee; chap. iii. 16.
those of Cain were rejected; for this, as the apostle was his not bringing a sin-offering when his brother says, was done by Faith, and therefore he obtained brought one, and his neglect and contempt caused his witness that he was righteous, or a justified person, other offering to be rejected. However, God now God testifying with his gifts, the thank-offering and graciously informs him that, though he had miscarried, the sin-offering, by accepting them, that faith in the his case was not yet desperate, as the means of faith, promised seed was the only way in which he could from the promise, &c., were in his power, and a vicaccept the services and offerings of mankind. Dr. tim proper for a sin-offering was lying (par robets, a Magee, in his Discourses on the Atonement, criticises word used to express the lying down of a quadruped) the opinion of Dr. Kennicott, and contends that there at the door of his fold. How many sinners perish, is no ground for the distinction made by the latter on not because there is not a Saviour able and willing to the words he also brought; and shows that though the save them, but because they will not use that which minchah in general signifies an unbloody offering, yet is within their power! Of such how true is that word it is also used to express both kinds, and that the min- of our Lord, Ye will not come unto me that ye might chah in question is to be understood of the sacrifice have life! then offered by Abel. I do not see that we gain much Unto thee shall be his desire, &c.] That is, Thou by this counter-criticism. See ver. 7.
shalt ever have the right of primogeniture, and in all Verse 5. Unto Cain] As being unconscious of his things shall thy brother be subject unto thee. These sinfulness, and consequently unhumbled, and to his of- words are not spoken of sin, as many have understood fering, as not being accompanied, as Abel's was, with them, but of Abel's submission to Cain as his superior, faith and a sacrifice for sin, he had not respect-He and the words are spoken to remove Cain's envy. could not, consistently with his holiness and justice, Verse 8. Cain talked with Abel his brother] approve of the one or receive the other. Of the man-i'p 12" vaiyomer Kayin, and Cain said, fc.; not ner in which God testified his approbation we are not talked, for this construction the word cannot bear without informed; it was probably, as in the case of Elijah, by great violence to analogy and grammatical accuracy, sending down fire from heaven, and consuming the But why should it be thus translated ! Because our sacrifice.
translators could not find that any thing was spoken Cain was very wroth] That displeasure which on the occasion ; and therefore they ventured to intishould have been turned against his own unhumbled mate that there was a conversation, indefinitely. In heart was turned against his innocent brother, who, the most correct editions of the Hebrew Bible there though not more highly privileged than he, made a is a small space left here in the text, and a circular much better use of the advantages which he shared in mark which refers to a note in the margin, intimating common with his ungodly and unnatural brother. that there is a hiatus or deficiency in the verse. Now
Verse 6. Why art thou wroth?] This was de- this deficiency is supplied in the principal ancient versigned as a gracious warning, and a preventive of the sions, and in the Samaritan text. In this the supplied meditated crime.
words are, LET US WALK OUT INTO THE FIELD. The Verse 7. If thou doest well] That which is right Syriac has, Let us go to the desert.
The Vulgate in the sight of God, shalt thou not be accepted ? Does Egrediamur foras, Let us walk out. The Septuagint, God reject any man who serves him in simplicity and AleZOWHEV ELÇ TO redov, Let us go out into the field. godly sincerity? But if thou doesl not well, can wrath The two Chaldee Targums have the same reading ; and indignation against thy righteous brother save thee so has the Coptic version. This addition is comfrom the displeasure under which thou art fallen? On pletely lost from every MS. of the Pentateuch now the contrary, have recourse to thy Maker for mercy; known; and yet it is sufficiently evident from the Sayan nion nnos lappethach chattath robets, a sin-of-maritan text, the Samaritan version, the Syriac, Sepfering lieth at thy door; an animal proper to be offered tuagint, and Vulgate, that it was in the most authentic as an atonement for sin is now couching at the door copies of the Hebrew before and some time since the of thy fold.
The words may therefore be safely The words nxon chatlath, and nson chottaah, fre-considered as a part of the sacred text, and with them quently signify sin ; but I have observed more than a the whole passage reads clear and consistently : “And hundred places the Old Testament where they are Cain said unto Abel his brother, Let us go out into used for sin-offering, and translated úpapria by the the field : and it came to pass, when they were in the Septuagint, which is the term the apostle uses, 2 Cor. field, that Cain rose up,” &c. The Jerusalem Tarv. 21: He hath made him to be sin (úpapriav, A SIN-gum, and the Targum of Jonathan ben Uzziel, pretend OFFERING) for us, who knew no sin. Cain's fault now I to give us the subject of their conversation : as the
A. M. cir. 129.
B. C. cir. 3875.
Cain slays his brother.
A. M. cir. 129. and it came to pass, when they which hath opened her mouth to
were in the field, that Cain rose receive thy brother's blood from up against Abel his brother, and a slew him. thy hand;
9 And the LORD said unto Cain, o Where 12 When thou tillest the ground, it shall not is Abel thy brother? And he said, 'I know henceforth yield unto thee her strength; a fuginot: Am I my brother's keeper ?
tive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth. 10 And he said, What hast thou done? the 13 And Cain said unto the LORD, My voice of thy brother's a blood "crieth unto me punishment is greater than I can bear. from the ground.
14 • Behold, thou hast driven me out this day 11 And now art thou cursed from the earth, from the face of the earth; and u from thy
* Job xi. 15; Psa. xxiv. 3-6; lv. 21 ; cxxxix. 19; Wisd. x. 3; Acts v. 3, 9; Heb. xii. 24 ; James v. 4; Rev. vi. 10.
2 Thess. i. 9. - Psa. li. ll.
piece is curious, I shall insert the substance of it, for the Verse 10. The voice of thy brother's blood] It is sake of those who may not have access to the originals. probable that Cain, having killed his brother, dug a
* And Cain said unto Hebel his brother, Let us go hole and buried him in the earth, hoping thereby to out into the field; and it came to pass that, when they prevent the murder from being known ; and that this were in the field, Cain answered and said to Hebel his is what is designed in the words, Thy brother's blood brother, I thought that the world was created in mer- crieth unto me FROM THE GROUND—which hath opened cy, but it is not governed according to the merit of her mouth to receive it from thy hand. Some think good works, nor is there any judgment, nor a Judge, that by the voice of thy brother's blood the cries of nor shall there be any future state in which good re- Abel's widow and children are be understood, as it wards shall be given to the righteous, or punishment is very probable that he was father of a family ; inexecuted on the wicked ; and now there is respect of deed his occupation and sacrifices seem to render this persons in judgment. On what account is it that thy probable, and probability is all we can expect on such sacrifice has been accepted, and mine not received with a subject. God represents these as calling aloud for complacency? And Hebel answered and said, The the punishment of the murderer; and it is evident that world was created in mercy, and it is governed accord-Cain expected to fall by the hands of some person ing to the fruit of good works; there is a Judge, a who, from his consanguinity, had the right of the avenfuture world, and a coming judgment, where good re- ger of blood ; for now that the murder is found out, wards shall be given to the righteous, and the impious he expects to suffer death for it. See ver. 14. punished ; and there is no respect of persons in judg- Verse 12. A fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be] ment; but because my works were better and more Thou shalt be expelled from the presence of God, and precious than thine, my oblation was received with from thy family connections, and shalt have no fixed complacency. And because of these things they con- secure residence in any place. The Septuagint rentended on the face of the field, and Cain rose up der this otevwv kal TPELWv con, thou shalt be groaning against Hebel his brother, and struck a stone into his and trembling upon the earth-the horror of thy crime forehead, and killed him."
shall ever haunt thee, and thou shalt never have any It is here supposed that the first murder committed well-grounded hope that God will remit the punishin the world was the consequence of a religious dis- ment thou deservest. No state out of endless perdipute; however this may have been, millions since tion can be considered more awful than this. have been sacrificed to prejudice, bigotry, and intole- Verse 13. My punishment is greater than I can
Here, certainly, originated the many-headed bear.] The margin reads, Mine iniquity is greater than monster, religious persecution ; the spirit of the wicked that it may be forgiven. The original words, ' 5193 one in his followers impels them to afflict and destroy #1039 gadol avoni minneso, may be translated, Is my all those who are partakers of the Spirit of God. crime too great to be forgiven ? words which we may Every persecutor is a legitimate son of the old mur- presume he uttered on the verge of black despair. It derer. This is the first triumph of Satan ; it is not is most probable that yw avon signifies rather the crime merely a death that he has introduced, but a violent than the punishment'; in this sense it is used Lev. one, as the first-fruits of sin. It is not the death of xxvi. 41, 43; 1 Sam. xxviii. 10; 2 Kings vii. 9; and an ordinary person, but of the most holy man then in XVI nasa signifies to remit or forgive. The marginal being ; it is not brought about by the providence of reading is, therefore, to be preferred to that in the God, or by a gradual failure and destruction of the text. earthly fabric, but by a violent separation of body and Verse 14. Behold, thou hast driven me out] In soul ; it is not done by a common enemy, from whom verses 11, 12, God states two parts of Cain's punishnothing better could be expected, but by the hand of a ment: 1. The ground was cursed, so that it was not brother, and for no other reason but because the object to yield any adequate recompense for his most careful of his envy was more righteous than himself. Alas! tillage. 2. He was to be a fugitive and a vagabond, how exceeding sinful does sin appear in its first mani- having no place in which he could dwell with comfestation !
fort or security.
To these Cain himself adds others.
B. C. cir. 3875.
The despair of Cain.
God sets a mark
him. A. M. cir . 129; face shall I be hid; and I shall be taken on him w seven-fold. A. M. cir. 129;
B. C. cir. 3875. be a fugitive and a vagabond in And the LORD * set a mark upon the earth : and it shall come to pass, that Cain, lest any finding him should kill him. every one that findeth me shall slay me. 16 And Cain y went out from the presence
15 And the LORD said unto him, There- of the LORD, and dwelt in the land of Nod, fore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall on the east of Eden.
Chap. ix. 6; Num. xxxv. 19, 21, 27.-* Psa. lxxix. 12. Ezek. ix. 4,6.52 Kings xiii. 23; xxiv. 20; Jer. xxiii. 39; lii. 3.
1. His being hidden from the face of God; which ap- therefore the Lord gave himn some miraculous sign or pears to signify his being expelled from that particular token that he should not be slain, to the end that he place where God had manifested his presence, in or should not despair, but, having time to repent, might contiguous to Paradise, whither our first parents re- return to a gracious God and find mercy. Notwithsorted as to an oracle, and where they offered their standing the allusion which I suppose St. Paul to have daily adorations. So in verse 16, it is said, Cain went made to the punishment of Cain, some think that he oul from the presence of the Lord, and was not per- did repent and find mercy. I can only say this was mitted any more to associate with the family in acts | possible. Most people who read this account wonder of religious worship. 2. The continual apprehension why Cain should dread being killed, when it does not of being slain, as all the inhabitants of the earth were appear to them that there were any inhabitants on the at that time of the same family, the parents themselves earth at that time besides himself and his parents. still alive, and each having a right to kill this mur- To correct this mistake, let it be observed that the derer of his relative. Add to all this, 3. The terrors death of Abel took place in the one hundred and twenof a guilty conscience; his awful apprehension of ty-eighth or one hundred and twenty-ninth year of the God's judgments, and of being everlastingly banished world. Now, “supposing Adam and Eve to have had from the beatific vision. To this part of the punish- no other sons than Cain and Abel in the year of the ment of Cain St. Paul probably alludes, 2 Thess. i. 9: world one hundred and twenty-eight, yet as they had Who shall be punished wilh everlasting destruction daughters married to these sons, their descendants from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of would make a considerable figure on the earth. Sup
The words are so similar that we can posing them to have been married in the nineteenth scarcely doubt of the allusion.
year of the world, they might easily have had each Verse 15. The Lord sel a mark upon Cain] What eight children, some males and some females, in the this mark was, has given rise to a number of frivo- twenty-fifth year. In the fiftieth year there might prolously curious conjectures. Dr. Shuckford collects ceed from them in a direct line sixty-four persons; in the most remarkable. Some say he was paralylic; the seventy-fourth year there would be five hundred this seems to have arisen from the version of the Sep- and twelve; in the ninety-eighth year, four thousand tuagint, Etevov Kai TpEMOV con, Groaning and trem- and ninety-six ; in the one hundred and twenty-second bling shalt thou be. The Targum of Jonathan ben they would amount to thirty-two thousand seven hunUzziel says the sign was from the great and precious dred and sixty-eight : if to these we add the other name, probably one of the letters of the word Y3EU children descended from Cain and Abel, their children, Yehovah. The author of an Arabic Catena in the and their children's children, we shall have, in the Bodleian Library says, “A sword could not pierce aforesaid one hundred and twenty-eight years four him ; fire could not burn him ; water could not drown hundred and twenty-one thousand one hundred and him; the air could not blast him ; nor could thun-sixty-four men capable of generation, without reckonder or lightning strike him." The author of Bereshith ing the women either old or young, or such as are Rabba, a comment on Genesis, says the mark was a under the age of seventeen.” See Dodd. circle of the sun rising upon him. Abravanel says But this calculation may be disputed, because there the sign was Abel's dog, which constantly accompa- is no evidence that the antediluvian patriarchs began nied him. Some of the doctors in the Talmud say to have children before they were sixty-five years of that it was the letter n tau marked on his forehead, age. Now, supposing that Adam at one hundred and which signified his contrition, as it is the first letter in thirty years of age had one hundred and thirty children, the word 773 vun teshubah, repentance. Rabbi Joseph, which is quite possible, and each of these a child at wiser than all the rest, says it was a long horn grow- sixty-five years of age, and one in each successivo ing out of his forehead!
year, the whole, in the one hundred and thirtieth year Dr. Shuckford farther observes that the Hebrew of the world, would amount to one thousand two hunword nix oth, which we translate a mark, signifies a dred and nineteen persons; a number sufficient to found sign or loken. Thus, Gen. ix, 13, the bow was to be several villages, and to excite the apprehensions under nix's leoth, for a sign or token that the world should which Cain appeared at this time to labour. not be destroyed; therefore the words, And the Lord Verse 16. The land of Nod] As Tij nod signifies set a mark upon Cain, should be translated, And the the same as 73 nad, a vagabond, some think this verse Lord appointed to Cain a token or sign, to convince should be rendered, And Cain went out from the prehim that no person should be permitted to slay him. sence of the Lord, from the east of Eden, and dwelt To have marked him would have been the most likely a vagabond on the earth ; thus the curse pronounced way to have brought all the evils he dreaded upon him; on him, verse 12, was accomplished.