By James Quitoriano
Cain and Abel are a case study to understand the meaning of faith. We can read this in Genesis 4:1-5. Both brothers made an offering to God but only one was accepted. Therefore, it merits the question, why?
In Hebrews 11:4, we read that Abel offered by faith. Hebrews 11:6 says that without faith it is impossible to please God. Therefore, Cain could not please God or his offering was not accepted because it was done without faith.
What is faith? Hebrews 11:1 defines faith as the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. This same faith was illustrated in James 2:14-26. Faith is a conviction concerning God’s Word that moves man to obey it. Thus, some people call this an “obedient faith”. How then do we get faith? In Romans 10:17, we can read the answer to this question: “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”
The two offerings represent two types of worshippers in today’s society. First, those who believe God’s Word and seek to obey it exactly as given. Second, those who seek to worship God according to their own opinions and traditions and expect God to accept it.
In Mark 7:6-13, it reads,
6 “He answered and said to them, “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written: ‘This people honors Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me. 7 And in vain they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’ 8 For laying aside the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men-the washing of pitchers and cups, and many other such things you do.” 9 He said to them, “All too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your tradition. 10 For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘He who curses father or mother, let him be put to death.’ 11 But you say, ‘If a man says to his father or mother, “Whatever profit you might have received from me is Corban”—’ (that is, a gift to God), 12 then you no longer let him do anything for his father or his mother, 13 making the word of God of no effect through your tradition which you have handed down. And many such things you do.”
Let us make sure that as we worship God it is done by faith and according to His Written Word!