Summary: Cain, Noah & Babel – from bad to worse
From Bad to Worse
I remember when I was growing up in the 70s and 80s. The world was under the threat of nuclear war. America and Soviet Union were threatening to blow each other up. In the midst of this, in 1983, there was a movie called “The Day After.” The movie was about a nuclear holocaust set in the American mid-west. It talked about what happens when the country is wiped out by a disaster, a calamity. In the movie there were a few survivors, a remnant, were left, and the film closes with these few survivors having to adjust to a new world. A world changed forever and people having to live with the consequences, living with “The Day After.”
Well those not as old as me, perhaps when I said the name of that movie, you thought of a similarly named movie that came out in 2004. “The Day After Tomorrow.” Today we don’t worry much about nuclear catasrophe and annhiliation. Today the world seems to be worried about climate change, and this movie played on those fears
in the movie. Due to global warming, a massive superstorm envelops the United States - where else of course - and an instant ice age starts as the storm hits New York where our heros are based. Temperatures drop to –100C and half the world is snap frozen with billions perishing. The few survivors - a remnant - wake up to a different world. The Day after Tomorrow.
Although both these films were made in different eras, and were about different things, the similarity in their titles shows a basically similar storyline. The world is under some threat caused by man’s sin and stupidity. In the 80s it was nuclear annhiliation. In today’s era it is the threat of climate change. And the question is, what happens after some world wide catastrophe. The world is changed, and from the day after, mankind has to come to terms with everything changed, everything different.
You know both these movies played on mankind’s inate intinct, that worldwide catasrophes can happen and have happened. And in fact, we find in the Bible, that they have happened before, and one big one one will happen yet again when Jesus returns.
Last week we looked at Genesis 1-3 - Paradise Lost. We looked at the Creation of the world and of people, and that it was very good. Perfect. A wonderful environment, a great place to live, where we lived in perfect relationship with each other and with God. And we were set to enjoy it forever. Death was not on the agenda.
Until something happened. The first catastrophe ever. When Eve and then Adam chose to believe the devil instead of God. God said that if they ate the fruit from a particular tree that they would die, and the devil said, no you won’t. Who’d they believe, the devil or God? You would think it a no-brainer, but they believed the devil and defied God. And from that action, catastrophe came to the human race. Adam and Eve were expelled from the garden of Eden, expelled from paradise, and we have been living with the consequences of that ever after. We have been living in
The Day After.
Today we are going to look at the early years of our human history. Last time we finished off with the fall of man, and today we start in Genesis chapter 4, the Day after the fall, or more accuratly, the time period after the fall. In the chapter we will cover today, we will see three cycles of sin. One of them leads to a worldwide catastrophe, where most people are wiped out because of their sin. There is the judgement of God because of their sin, but a remnant are rescued, rescued through the grace and love of God.
The three cycles we will look at are:
Cain and Abel
The Flood and Noah.
Babel and Abraham.
So let’s have a look at Cain and Abel first. Genesis 4 opens with Adam and Eve in the Day after, or the first years after if you want to be more exact. And the first thing we see in verse 1 and 2 is that Adam and Eve had their first two kids, both boys, Cain and Abel. Cain and Abel lived in a new world. Unlike their parents, they had never known paradise. They made the best of the world as they could. Abel kept livestock, while Cain worked the ground and grew crops. And from verse 3 we read that they brought some of their produce to God as an offering.
Gen 43 In the course of time Cain brought to the LORD an offering of the fruit of the ground, 4 and Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat portions.