The Letter Kills But The Spirit Gives Life

Sep 2, 2013
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A very good parallel.. It completely makes sense.. But I have to go with WITM (I think we all should agree for a common short form of name for him!!).. This is what Genesis says,

"Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, and Cain a worker of the ground."

So naturally Abel got something from his livestock and Cain got something that he harvested.. I see two points,

1) There is no reference to Cain's offering as first fruits.. Which means, he was not doing this in faith.. he was doing it as a ritual.. Hence, he was not doing this from his heart.. He was valuing self more than God..
2) This is what Jesus says in Mathew 5: 23,24 - So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.

May be Cain already had trouble with Abel? Cain was quick to get angry with Abel.. May be it was an accumulation of the anger.. Lord clearly saw that his heart was not right.. As Jesus said, may be his heart not being right with Abel, his offering could not be accepted.. Because Lord clearly tells Cain that he is not right.. And sin is crouching at his doors.. Looking at this, I am thinking may be Cain was already having some kind of hatred towards Abel.. Why? I don't know :)
Well I don't see the first fruit as the issue? The issue is the sacrifice of the Lamb and the Blood which represents faith in Christ. Cain represented the labor or "works" of the flesh.

And the scriptures tell us why Cain hated Able.. Because of the sacrifice.

Heb 11:4 ¶ 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.

1Jo 3:12 Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother's righteous.

This is clearly a contrast between the righteousness of faith (spirit) and self-righteousness, which is by the "works" of the law (letter)
 
Feb 5, 2013
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Well I don't see the first fruit as the issue? The issue is the sacrifice of the Lamb and the Blood which represents faith in Christ. Cain represented the labor or "works" of the flesh.

And the scriptures tell us why Cain hated Able.. Because of the sacrifice.

Heb 11:4 ¶ 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.

1Jo 3:12 Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother's righteous.

This is clearly a contrast between the righteousness of faith (spirit) and self-righteousness, which is by the "works" of the law (letter)
I am not denying whatever you have posted.. But clearly, Cain was a farmer and Abel was a shepherd! So where would Cain go for a lamb? :)
 
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I am not denying whatever you have posted.. But clearly, Cain was a farmer and Abel was a shepherd! So where would Cain go for a lamb? :)
Well clearly God thought he was able to understand and offer the acceptable sacrifice? I assume God would not be unjust to him?
 
Feb 5, 2013
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Well clearly God thought he was able to understand and offer the acceptable sacrifice? I assume God would not be unjust to him?
Well, Cain could have exchanged his grains with Abel to get a sheep.. The Bible is silent on what was taught to Cain and Abel as an acceptable sacrifice.. Clearly Lord would have taught them.. And Cain did not really obey it.. What made Abel's sacrifice better could be that his sacrifice was right or he was not having right intentions..
 
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Well, Cain could have exchanged his grains with Abel to get a sheep.. The Bible is silent on what was taught to Cain and Abel as an acceptable sacrifice.. Clearly Lord would have taught them.. And Cain did not really obey it.. What made Abel's sacrifice better could be that his sacrifice was right or he was not having right intentions..
Well I don't think there is a better type or picture of Christ or more evident truth that Christ is the Lamb of God, I think its very clear that Able was offering that which atones for our sin..and Cain was trying to earn his righteousness apart from faith in the Lamb. This is a very clear picture to me. :)
 
I have heard it said: "The New Testament is hidden in the Old testament; and the Old Testament is revealed in the New Testament." I think that's an excellent guideline to always keep in mind.

I have seen congregations guided by a mixture, it seemed to me, of both the NT and the OT. The preacher teaches and preaches about mercy, and, grace and love, and salvation in Jesus: but in the OT spirit of the letter...not giving way to the Holy Spirit. Those preachers seem to base their doctrine of grace on a definition, and not on the essence of what is God...or what is the Holy Spirit. Again, they use NT scriptures, but in the letter of the Law.

Paul wrote: "...I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And He said unto me, 'My grace is sufficient for thee...".
What is the grace of God? His Holy Spirit! God is telling Paul that the Holy Spirit that has been given him is SUFFICIENT for any and all problems that Paul may have. That is why Paul could exclaim: "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me." Did you hear? We don't live by our faith, but "...by the faith of the Son of God..."! Not our faith: His faith! Listen: "For by grace (receiving the Holy Spirit) are you saved, through faith, and not of yourselves: it is the gift of God." Again, it is not though OUR faith: but through His faith.
How, Mr. Villa? "Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before Him...".
What joy, Mr. Villa? After praying in the garden of Gethsemane, Jesus cried out: "Not my will, but thine be done." He saw your salvation and mine: and rejoiced in it. Jesus believed in you: that you would repent and take up your cross.


"The Old Testament should be interpreted in the light of the New Testament; the New Testament should NOT be interpreted in the light of the Old Testament."
 
Sep 2, 2013
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I have heard it said: "The New Testament is hidden in the Old testament; and the Old Testament is revealed in the New Testament." I think that's an excellent guideline to always keep in mind.

I have seen congregations guided by a mixture, it seemed to me, of both the NT and the OT. The preacher teaches and preaches about mercy, and, grace and love, and salvation in Jesus: but in the OT spirit of the letter...not giving way to the Holy Spirit. Those preachers seem to base their doctrine of grace on a definition, and not on the essence of what is God...or what is the Holy Spirit. Again, they use NT scriptures, but in the letter of the Law.

Paul wrote: "...I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And He said unto me, 'My grace is sufficient for thee...".
What is the grace of God? His Holy Spirit! God is telling Paul that the Holy Spirit that has been given him is SUFFICIENT for any and all problems that Paul may have. That is why Paul could exclaim: "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me." Did you hear? We don't live by our faith, but "...by the faith of the Son of God..."! Not our faith: His faith! Listen: "For by grace (receiving the Holy Spirit) are you saved, through faith, and not of yourselves: it is the gift of God." Again, it is not though OUR faith: but through His faith.
How, Mr. Villa? "Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before Him...".
What joy, Mr. Villa? After praying in the garden of Gethsemane, Jesus cried out: "Not my will, but thine be done." He saw your salvation and mine: and rejoiced in it. Jesus believed in you: that you would repent and take up your cross.


"The Old Testament should be interpreted in the light of the New Testament; the New Testament should NOT be interpreted in the light of the Old Testament."
Thank you Mario for your biblical view :)
 
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Well I don't see the first fruit as the issue? The issue is the sacrifice of the Lamb and the Blood which represents faith in Christ. Cain represented the labor or "works" of the flesh.

And the scriptures tell us why Cain hated Able.. Because of the sacrifice.

Heb 11:4 ¶ 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.

1Jo 3:12 Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother's righteous.

This is clearly a contrast between the righteousness of faith (spirit) and self-righteousness, which is by the "works" of the law (letter)
I know that some have doubts about why God rejected Cain and his offering, I believe it is clear that Cain's "works" were evil because they did not offer the sacrifice of the Lamb as Able did. I believe Cain worked hard to grow those crops he offered to God, just like those who were and are under the law and religious bondage are "working" very hard to please God.

Heb 4:10 For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.

Lu 10:39 And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus' feet, and heard his word.
40 But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.
41 And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things:
42 But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.
 
I know that some have doubts about why God rejected Cain and his offering, I believe it is clear that Cain's "works" were evil because they did not offer the sacrifice of the Lamb as Able did. I believe Cain worked hard to grow those crops he offered to God, just like those who were and are under the law and religious bondage are "working" very hard to please God.
Heb 4:10 For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.
Lu 10:39 And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus' feet, and heard his word.
40 But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.
41 And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things:
42 But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.
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Yes, Beloved. ALL "good works" are evil when compared to righteousness. And YES!: Abel's was a work of faith.

Perhaps Cain did not feel he had sinned or done anything wrong: so he offered God what he felt was a goodly offering.

Abel however, "remembered" his parent's testimony: that they had known God, and that He was holy; how they had sinned and tried to cover their sins with the "work" of their own hands; and how God covered their sins with His work of shedding blood and covering their nakedness (sins) with "...coats of skins, and clothed them." Remember, God clothed Adam and Eve after drawing their confession from them!
In effect, Abel was telling God that he, also, needed a covering: he was also confessing his sins! So the Lamb Abel offered was saying: Here God, cover me also!
 
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Feb 13, 2014
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The curse is that man has to labor to get food from the ground. Cain gave an offering from the ground, but did not get blessed. Now if we look through scripture, are there other people that gave offerings from the ground. Yes. Did they get blessed? Yes. So if Cain gave from ground, and did not get blessed, yet other people have gave from the ground and did get blessed, that would show us that the ground was not the issue. But when we look at that passage what did Abel do, that it does not say Cain did? Give his first fruit. Now since there is so many scriptures that talk about a relationship between first fruit, and blessings, I would think we have to assume this was the reason Cain did not receive blessing.
The curse doesn't exist for the believers. If Cain was in faith the curse of the ground wouldn't exist for him. Even if the first fruits represented Christ, he wasn't in faith, since the first fruits would not be representative of Christ if they weren't given from faith, "everything that does not come from faith is sin" (Romans 14:23). Someone can give a lamb, give first fruits, proclaim they are saved, but if they don't have faith they are just outer acts.
 
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No I do believe the Lamp represents Christ, and that the ground is cursed. But I don't believe that Cains offering was not blessed because it came from the ground, I think it was because it was not his firstling.

Here is a scripture that shows a blessing can come from the cursed ground:

And the first of all the firstfruits of all kinds, and every offering of all kinds from all your offerings, shall belong to the priests. You shall also give to the priests the first of your dough, that a blessing may rest on your house.

"But if he be not able to bring two turtledoves, or two young pigeons, then he that sinned shall bring for his offering the tenth part of an ephah of fine flour for a sin offering; he shall put no oil upon it, neither shall he put any frankincense thereon: for it is a sin offering" (Leviticus 5:11). The sin offering for the poorest was grain rather than the lamb or two doves or two pigeons.
 
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I am not denying whatever you have posted.. But clearly, Cain was a farmer and Abel was a shepherd! So where would Cain go for a lamb? :)
That is why for the very poor they can give a grain offering without oil and incense for sin. It is really the faith that counts since the grain is representing the blood offering of Christ.

The grain offering for thankfulness is different than the sin offering since it has the oil and incense poured on it.
 
The turtle doves, young pigeons and the flour were asked for in the Law. Cain and Abel are prior to the sin offering required by the Law.
The Lamb that Abel offered represented God's sacrifice for Adam and Eve.
 
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The turtle doves, young pigeons and the flour were asked for in the Law. Cain and Abel are prior to the sin offering required by the Law.
The Lamb that Abel offered represented God's sacrifice for Adam and Eve.
Mario I know that Cain an Abel were before the law. The issue is faith before the law, during the law, and after the law. Just because the law wasn't named doesn't mean the law didn't exist. Perfection is perfection. Cain and Abel wouldn't have offered any offering if we are to take it from your standpoint. Why would they since the law didn't exist? Why would there be a differentiation between Cain and Abel's offering since the law didn't exist. It is because we are talking about faith, not law. Sin offerings of a lamb under the law had the same requirements of faith that they did before the law. Remembrance of the covering of God is the same before the law and during the law and after the law. The only difference is between the looking forward and as it is for us now, that which has been done for us already.
 
Mario I know that Cain an Abel were before the law. The issue is faith before the law, during the law, and after the law. Just because the law wasn't named doesn't mean the law didn't exist. Perfection is perfection. Cain and Abel wouldn't have offered any offering if we are to take it from your standpoint. Why would they since the law didn't exist? Why would there be a differentiation between Cain and Abel's offering since the law didn't exist. It is because we are talking about faith, not law. Sin offerings of a lamb under the law had the same requirements of faith that they did before the law. Remembrance of the covering of God is the same before the law and during the law and after the law. The only difference is between the looking forward and as it is for us now, that which has been done for us already.
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OK.
 
The turtle doves, young pigeons and the flour were asked for in the Law. Cain and Abel are prior to the sin offering required
by the Law.
The Lamb that Abel offered represented God's sacrifice for Adam and Eve.
 
God's sacrifice for Adam and Eve is the same sacrifice for us Mario. You know this. It is Jesus.
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That was not the issue before us.
God's sacrifice for Adam and Eve was a type and figure of the Lord Jesus, not the very sacrifice itself. Abel's sacrifice was the same as God's sacrifice for Adam and Eve. In it, Abel was confessing that his sins, also, needed to be covered.
I agree that it was of faith: in that he received and believed the testimony of his parents. If it was not so, then Abel might have offered another type of sacrifice, or no sacrifice and all. It is the same today: many say they have faith and because of their faith,
they believe that they are righteous before God. I preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ: that whosoever believes [the Gospel], shall be saved: as also says the Lord Jesus.
Your post is conjecture: mine is based on the evidence of Abel's sacrifice.
 
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That was not the issue before us.
God's sacrifice for Adam and Eve was a type and figure of the Lord Jesus, not the very sacrifice itself. Abel's sacrifice was the same as God's sacrifice for Adam and Eve. In it, Abel was confessing that his sins, also, needed to be covered.
I agree that it was of faith: in that he received and believed the testimony of his parents. If it was not so, then Abel might have offered another type of sacrifice, or no sacrifice and all. It is the same today: many say they have faith and because of their faith,
they believe that they are righteous before God. I preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ: that whosoever believes [the Gospel], shall be saved: as also says the Lord Jesus.
Your post is conjecture: mine is based on the evidence of Abel's sacrifice.
If you believe God's sacrifice was a type and figure before the law, then you should believe the same for the sacrifices done under the law. The animal sacrifices didn't make them clean. It was faith in the messiah symbolized by the animals that made them clean.