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Genesis 4:1-8 - What is the Right Way to Worship

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Genesis 4:1-8 -  What is the Right Way to Worship?

            What is the right way to worship?  Can you clap your hands?  Can you tap your foot when you worship?  What about the kind of songs that are sung?  Which one's are right?

            And when you pray, should you be on your knees?  Should you pray with your eyes closed or open?  What is the right way to worship?  Do you know why I am asking what is the right way to worship?  When you come to Genesis chapter 4, God accepts the worship of Abel, but He rejects the worship of Cain? 

            Cain was a farmer.  When he tried to worship God, he brought the fruit from his farm.  He brought vegetables and fruit to worship God. 

            Abel was a shepherd.  When he worships God, he took a little lamb from his flock, and shed its blood. 

            What is the right way to worship?

FIRST -- I WANT TO CONTRAS THE WORSHIP OF CAIN AND ABEL.

Genesis 4:3-4

3 So it came about in the course of time that Cain brought an offering to the Lord of the fruit of the ground.  4 And Abel, 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.  NASV

A.  NOW NOTICE THE WORSHIP OF CAIN.

Genesis 4:3-4

3 So it came about in the course of time that Cain brought an offering to the Lord of the fruit of the ground.  NASV

            Cain forgot something when he tried to worship God.  Do you know what it was?  Look at Genesis 3:17

Genesis 3:17

17 Then to Adam He said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat from it’; Cursed is the ground because of you; In toil you shall eat of it, All the days of your life. NASV

            Cain was out there working in the heat of the day, plowing, planing, hoeing, and weeding.  Then he takes the fruit from his farm and he presents his very best work to God. 

            Now try to image what Cain offered to God.  Beautiful flowers, roses, carnations, tulips, all kinds of beautiful flowers,  The there may have been some delicious apples, juicy oranges, and maybe he even offered to God a turnip. 

            It must have looked absolutely beautiful.  But what did God think of it?

 Notice what the Bible says in Genesis 4:5.    

Genesis 4:5

5 but for Cain and for his offering He had no regard. So Cain became very angry and his countenance fell.  NASV

            God actually turned His back on Cain's offering.  But why? 

            Not only was the ground cursed, but there is another reason.  Turn to Hebrews 9:22

Hebrews 9:22

22 And according to the Law, one may almost say, all things are cleansed with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.  NASV

            Have you ever head the expression, "You can't get blood out of a turnip?"  It may be beautiful, but there is no blood. 

            When I worked for Sears and Roebuck, I was a bill collector.  I called one lady and tried to make arrangements for a payment on her account.  She told me, "you can't get blood out of a turnip."  I told her, "Sears and Roebuck does not deal with vegetables.  We deal with the payments of people." 

            God does not deal with vegetables,  He deals with the sins of people. 

            Do you see what Cain was doing?  He was bringing his very best works to God.  He thought that the way you approach God is to offer your works to God.

Isaiah 64:6

6 For all of us have become like one who is unclean, And all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment; And all of us wither like a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.  NASV

            God says, "The way you approach me is to recognize that you have sinned and a price must be paid, and that price is the shedding of blood."

            Cain thought that the way you approach God was by presenting good works.  God says, that the way you approach Him is by recognizing that you have sinned.

            We do not worship God through our good works.  We worship God through the shed blood of Jesus Christ.

            Dwight L. Moody was traveling by train to California.  When the engineer heard that Dwight L. Moody was on board he went to argue with him trying to persuade him salvation was based on works.  Dwight L. Moody said to him, "The difference between your religion and my religion is a matter of spelling.  You spell your religion "Do, and I spell my religion "Done."

Jude 11

11 Woe to them! For they have gone the way of Cain, and for pay they have rushed headlong into the error of Balaam, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.  NASV

            Do you know what the way of Cain is? 

What is the "WAY OF CAIN?"  It is self righteousness.  You see Cain had a self made religion of works. 

            Have you ever heard someone say, "All religions are the same.  That's not true.  Here are 2 boys, both religious.  But God respected only one. 

            I believe that Cain knew that the only way to remove sin was through a blood sacrifice. 

I'm sure that Adam & Eve shared how they disobeyed God.  And I'm sure that they hared how God took an animal and slayed.  And how God took the skins of that animal and He gave the skins to cloth Adam and Eve. 

But Cain formed his own religion.  And Cain took something from the cursed ground.  I'm sure it must have looked beautiful.  I'm sure Cain was sincere. 

            But it was a religion of his own making and it was a religion of his own efforts. 

            And God could not accept it, because it was a religion of self effort.  

            You'd be surprised how many people have that king of a religion.  They believe they will reach God by their won efforts. 

            They believe in culture, but not Calvery. 

Hebrews 9:22

22 And according to the Law, one may almost say, all things are cleansed with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.  NASV

The way of Cain is self righteousness. 

A.  THE WORSHIP OF CAIN.

B.  THE WORSHIP OF ABEL.  

Genesis 4:4

4 And Abel, 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. NASV  

            The difference between Abel's offering and Cain's offering was the shedding of blood.

Hebrews 11:4

4 By faith Abel offered to God a better sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained the testimony that he was righteous, God testifying about his gifts, and through faith, though he is dead, he still speaks.  NASV

            Someone may say, God wasn't fair with Cain.  After all he did bring an offering to God. 

            However, the shedding of blood was not an after thought with God.

Revelation 13:8

8 And all who dwell on the earth will worship him, everyone whose name has not been written from the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who has been slain.  NASV

            Did you know that there is a theme that runs from one end of the Bible to the other end?  There is a theme that runs from Genesis to Revelation. 

            That theme is all sin is removed by the shedding of blood. 

            You can cut this Bible anywhere and it will bleed. 

            When Noah gets out of the ark, What is the very first thing he did?

Genesis 7:1

1 Then the Lord said to Noah, “Enter the ark, you and all your household; for you alone I have seen to be righteous before Me in this time.  NASV

Genesis 8:15

15 Then God spoke to Noah, saying.  NASV

Genesis 8:20

20 Then Noah built an altar to the Lord, and took of every clean animal and of every clean bird and offered burnt offerings on the altar. NASV

            And when God calls Abraham and tells him to leave his own land.  And finally Abraham arrives in what is now Israel.  And what  does Abraham do?  He built an alter and he worships God through the shedding of blood.

            The Bible says, "Without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin."

            And when the Hebrews are ready to leave Egypt.  Before God would allow the Hebrews to leave Egypt, there is one thing they must do.  Every Hebrew home was to choose a lamb and shed its blood and then they were to place the blood upon the door post and lintel. 

            You see blood being shed for sins through out the Old Testament.  And then you come to the New Testament and what do you see?  Turn to John 1:29

John 1:29

29 The next day he saw Jesus coming to him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!"  NASV

FIRST -- THE CONTRAST OF THEIR WORSHIP.

SECOND -- THE CONSEQUENCES OF THEIR WORSHIP. 

            The difference between the worship of Cain and the worship of Abel is the difference between unrighteousness and righteousness.  The difference is between being right with God and being guilty before God.

1 John 2:2

2 and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.  NASV

2 Corinthians 5:21

21 He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. NASV

            Someone says, I just can't accept that.  It's foolishness.

1 Corinthians 1:18

18 For the word of the cross is to those who are perishing foolishness, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.  NASV

FIRST -- THE CONTRAST OF THEIR WORSHIP.

SECOND -- THE CONSEQUENCES OF THEIR WORSHIP. 

THIRD -- THE CONFLICT OF THEIR WORSHIP.  

Genesis 4:5

5 but for Cain and for his offering He had no regard. So Cain became very angry and his countenance fell.  NASV

Genesis 4:8

8 And Cain 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.  NASV

           

            People do not need more religion.  People need to turn from religion to Jesus Christ. 

            Religion without the shed blood of Jesus Christ is mean and narrow. 

            It was a religious man that killed Abel.

            It was a religious crown that wanted Jesus Christ crucified.

John 16:1-2

1 “These things I have spoken to you, that you may be kept from stumbling.  2 “They will make you outcasts from the synagogue, but an hour is coming for everyone who kills you to think that he is offering service to God. NASV

            But don't worry about it.  The Bible says,

"...ABEL BEING DEAD YET SPEAKETH."

            Did you know that Abel was a prophet? 

Turn to Luke 11. 

Some people think Cain and Able were just a couple of boys not knowing what kind of a sacrifice to offer.  And just by luck, Abel offered the right sacrifice.

Luke 11:49-51

49 “For this reason also the wisdom of God said, ‘I will send to them prophets and apostles, and some of them they will kill and some they will persecute, 50 in order that the blood of all the prophets, shed since the foundation of the world, may be charged against this generation, 51 from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who perished between the altar and the house of God; yes, I tell you, it shall be charged against this generation.' nasv

            Now Abel a prophet of God, what did Able preach?

Acts 10:43

43 “Of Him all the prophets bear witness that through His name everyone who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins." NASV

            I want you to notice what Hebrews 11:4 says about Abel.

Hebrews 11:4

4 By faith Abel offered to God a better sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained the testimony that he was righteous..... NASV                        

            I want to tell you something.  There are only 2 kinds of people.

            There are righteous and unrighteous people.               

            There are saved and lost people.

            We like to class people as red, yellow, black and white.  Or rich and poor.  Or educated and uneducated.

            But God says you are either righteous or unrighteous.  You are either saved or lost. 

           

            You are either a saint or you aint.

            Look at Romans 3:23

Romans 3:23

23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. nasv

            No one here can say they have not sinned.

Lets see if that is true.  How many here have ever told a lie?

            How many here have ever stolen anything?

            That proves it.  We have a congregation of liars and thieves.

            We are all sinners.  But notice Romans 3:24

Romans 3:24

24 being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus. nasv

            Jesus is not only the best way to heaven, Jesus is the only way to heaven.    

            Now look again at Hebrews 11:4

Hebrews 11:4

4 ...though he is dead, he still speaks. nasv

            Now how long has Abel been dead?  Thousands of years.

            That means Abel is still alive.

AMAZING GRACE.   

            What is the right way to worship?  If you approach God through the shed blood of Jesus Christ, you can clap your hands or not clap your hands.  You can pray with your eyes open or with your eyes closed.  God is not so concerned with the form of your worship as he is with the origin of your worship.  Do you worship God through the shed blood of Jesus Christ?

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