Cain and Abel gave things to God
1Adam and Eve slept together, like a man does with his wife, and then Eve had a baby boy. Eve said, “God has helped me make another human.” So she gave him the name Cain. That name means make. 2After that, they had another son, and she gave him the name Abel.
Abel grew up, and he looked after sheep and goats all the time. Cain grew up, and he became a gardener. He dug the ground and grew plants for people to eat.
3One day, Cain brought a gift to give to God. He brought some food from his garden. 4And Abel brought a gift to give to God too. He gave God some of his young sheep and goats. They were the first ones born to their mothers. Abel brought the best bits of meat from those sheep and goats. And God was happy with Abel, and with his gift.#Hebrews 11:4 5But God was not happy with Cain, or with his gift. Then Cain got very angry. His face changed, and he looked very sad.
6God said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why do you look sad? 7If you do the right thing, I will be happy with you. But, if you don’t do the right thing, look out, you will always want to do more bad things. But you have to control yourself and stop doing bad things.”
8After that, Cain went to his brother, Abel, and said, “Let’s go for a walk.” So Cain and Abel went out bush together. While they were there, Cain hit his brother, and killed him dead.#Matthew 23:35; Luke 11:51; 1 John 3:12
9Later, God said to Cain, “Where is your brother, Abel?”
Cain said, “I don’t know where my brother is. It’s not my job to look after him.”
10God said to Cain, “You did a really bad thing. Your brother’s blood is on the ground. It’s like his blood is calling out to me. It is telling me you killed him.#Hebrews 12:24 11So now I’m going to curse you. You killed your brother, and his blood is on the ground. So I will make the ground bad for you. 12If you try to grow plants in the ground, nothing will grow for you. You will go away from me. And you will walk around in lots of places, but you will not have a home.”
13Cain said to God, “God, you are too hard on me. 14If you make me leave this land where I grow my food, and if you make me go away from you, and if you make me walk around everywhere, so I will not have a home, then somebody will find me and finish me.”
15God said, “I will not let that happen. I’ll tell everybody that if they kill you, then I will punish them 7 times more than I punished you.” So God put a mark on Cain’s head, so that everybody will know that they can’t kill him.
The people born into Cain’s family
16After that, Cain went away from God and went to live in a place called Nod. That country was on the east side of Eden. 17Cain slept with his wife, like married people do together, and then she had a baby boy, called Enok. Cain built a town, and he also called it Enok, after his son. 18Enok grew up, and he had a son, called Irad.
Irad grew up, and he had a son, called Mehujayel.
Mehujayel grew up, and he had a son, called Methushayel.
Methushayel grew up, and he had a son, called Lamek.
19Lamek grew up, and he married 2 women. One wife’s name was Adah, and the other wife’s name was Zillah.
20Lamek’s wife Adah had a baby boy, called Jabal. Jabal grew up and he was the first person to go around with mobs of cows and bulls, just living in a tent, not a house.
21Adah had another son, called Jubal. Jubal grew up and was the first person to play musical instruments. He played a harp and a flute.
22Lamek’s other wife, Zillah, had a son called Tubal Cain. Tubal Cain grew up and made tools from iron and from a brown metal called bronze.
Zillah also had a daughter, called Namah.
23One day, Lamek said to his 2 wives, “Adah and Zillah, listen to me properly. A young man hit me and hurt me, so I killed him dead. 24God said that if anyone killed Cain, he will punish that person 7 times more than he punished Cain. I reckon I’m more important than Cain. So if somebody kills me for killing that young man, I reckon God will punish that person 77 times more than he punished Cain.”#Matthew 18:22
Adam and Eve had another son
25Adam and Eve slept together again, like a man does with his wife, and they had another son, and they gave him the name Seth. That name means gave. Eve said, “God gave me another son to take the place of Abel, our son that Cain killed.”
26Seth grew up, and he had a son too, and he gave him the name Enosh. At that time people started to call God by his special name Yahweh when they showed respect to him.
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The First Family
1Adam had sexual relations with his wife Eve. She became pregnant and gave birth to a son. She named him Cain.#4:1 Cain This name is like the Hebrew word meaning “make” or “get.” Eve said, “With the Lord’s help, I have made a man!”
2Eve gave birth again to Cain’s brother Abel. Abel became a shepherd, and Cain became a farmer.
The First Murder
3-4At harvest time,#4:3-4 At harvest time Literally, “at the end of days.” Cain brought a gift to the Lord. He brought some of the food that he grew from the ground, but Abel brought some animals from his flock. He chose some of his best sheep and brought the best parts from them.#4:3-4 He chose … from them Literally, “He brought some of his firstborn sheep, especially their fat.”
The Lord accepted Abel and his gift. 5But he did not accept Cain and his offering. Cain was sad because of this, and he became very angry. 6The Lord asked Cain, “Why are you angry? Why does your face look sad? 7You know that if you do what is right, I will accept you. But if you don’t, sin is ready to attack you. That sin will want to control you, but you must control it.”#4:7 But if you … control it Or “But if you don’t do right, sin is crouching at your door. It wants you, but you must rule over it.”
8Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.”#4:8 Let’s go … field This sentence is found in the ancient versions but not in the standard Hebrew text. So they went to the field. Then Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.
9Later, the Lord said to Cain, “Where is your brother Abel?”
Cain answered, “I don’t know. Is it my job to watch over my brother?”
10-11Then the Lord said, “What have you done? You killed your brother and the ground opened up to take his blood from your hands. Now his blood is shouting to me from the ground. So you will be cursed from this ground. 12Now when you work the soil, the ground will not help your plants grow. You will not have a home in this land. You will wander from place to place.”
13Then Cain said to the Lord, “This punishment is more than I can bear! 14You are forcing me to leave the land, and I will not be able to be near you or have a home! Now I must wander from place to place, and anyone I meet could kill me.”
15Then the Lord said to Cain, “No, if anyone kills you, I will punish that person much, much more.” Then the Lord put a mark on Cain to show that no one should kill him.
16Cain went away from the Lord and lived in the land of Nod.#4:16 Nod This name means “wandering.”
17Cain had sexual relations with his wife. She became pregnant and gave birth to a son named Enoch. Cain built a city and gave the city the same name as his son Enoch.
18Enoch had a son named Irad. Irad had a son named Mehujael. Mehujael had a son named Methushael. And Methushael had a son named Lamech.
19Lamech married two women. One wife was named Adah, and the other was named Zillah. 20Adah gave birth to Jabal. Jabal was the father#4:20 father This probably means that this man invented these things or was the first one to use them. of people who live in tents and earn their living by keeping cattle. 21Jabal was Jubal’s brother. Jubal was the father of people who play the harp and flute. 22Zillah gave birth to Tubal-Cain. Tubal-Cain was the father of people who work with bronze and iron. The sister of Tubal-Cain was named Naamah.
23Lamech said to his wives,
“Adah and Zillah, hear my voice!
You wives of Lamech, listen to me.
A man hurt me, so I killed him.
I even killed a child for hitting me.
24The punishment for killing Cain was very bad.
But the punishment for killing me will be many times worse!”
Adam and Eve Have a New Son
25Adam again had sexual relations with his wife, and she gave birth to another son. She named him Seth.#4:25 Seth This is like a Hebrew word meaning “to give.” Eve said, “God has given me another son. Cain killed Abel, but now I have Seth.” 26Seth also had a son. He named him Enosh. At that time people began to pray to the Lord.#4:26 people … the Lord Literally, “people began calling on the name YAHWEH.”
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