Hebrews 11:4, “By faith Abel brought God a better offering than Cain did. By faith he was commended as righteous, when God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith Abel still speaks, even though he is dead.”
Most people know the story of Cain and Abel; sadly, the only part they remember is that Cain murdered Abel. What has been forgotten is the reason why Cain wanted to kill his brother in the first place. In today’s passage the author of Hebrews reminds his readers that by faith Abel, “brought God a better offering than Cain.” As a result, Cain killed Abel out of jealousy because of his brother’s offering!
Genesis 4:3-7 records, “3 In the course of time Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil as an offering to the Lord. 4 And Abel also brought an offering—fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock. The Lord looked with favor on Abel and his offering, 5 but on Cain and his offering he did not look with favor. So Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast. 6 Then the Lord said to Cain, ‘Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? 7 If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.’”
I believe the reason why Abel’s offering was accepted is because he gave God the best from his flock- the first born. The reason why Cain’s offering was rejected was because, “in the course of time,” he gave God whatever he had leftover from his crops. Consequently, God told Cain that if did what was right like Abel, give his first and best, He would bless him too. However, if he allowed the sin of jealously to stay in his heart it would master him. Eventually, we know that Cain refused to do what Abel did and was conquered by his sin and murdered his own brother in Genesis 4:8.
The lesson of faith we can learn from Abel is to always put God first in our finances and give Him our best.
The modern way of giving God your best like Cain would be in your tithes and offerings (Malachi 3:6-12). Don’t be like Abel and give God your leftovers nor complain like the Israelites did because they wanted to keep the best for themselves. The prophet Malachi recorded the Lord’s rebuke to them when they gave Him their unwanted animals, “8 ‘When you offer blind animals for sacrifice, is that not wrong? When you sacrifice lame or diseased animals, is that not wrong? Try offering them to your governor! Would he be pleased with you? Would he accept you?’ says the Lord Almighty.” And, “14 ‘Cursed is the cheat who has an acceptable male in his flock and vows to give it, but then sacrifices a blemished animal to the Lord. For I am a great king,’ says the Lord Almighty, ‘and my name is to be feared among the nations’” (Malachi 1:8,14).
By faith, always give God 10% of your total income and prayerfully give an offering above that from your remaining 90% to sow good seed into God’s kingdom. If you haven’t been faithful in giving God your best, start today!
Do you have faith in God to give Him your best when it comes to finances?
- Read what God teaches about tithes and offerings in Malachi 3:6-12.
- Trust God with all your finances, especially in regards to tithes and offerings. John Hagee said, “Since my moneyis God’s money, every spending decision I make is a spiritual decision.”
- Love God more than money (Matthew 6:24)!
One Year Reading Plan
Ezekiel 3:16-6:14, Hebrews 4:1-16, Psalm 104:24-35, & Proverbs 26:27. Click here to read online.