The lesson picks up from when man committed the first murder. The center of the passage diverges when Cain went out from the presence of the Lord, while Adam had another seed in place of Abel, Seth. On one hand, Cain’s descendants built up their worldly success. On the other hand, Seth’s descendants focused on calling on the name of the Lord. Through this narrative, we will study how each set of descendants lived their lives and built their life priorities.
Did You Know...?
1. Sevenfold (4:15) is an expression used to show the level of intensity or severity (Lev 26:18, 28; Ps 79:12; Prov 6:31). Such expression is used in Genesis 4:15 and 24 to show the seriousness and the severity of the vengeance.
Compare the two Enochs and two Lamechs descended from Cain and Seth. What can we learn about their life priorities from the comparison?Hide Answer
A comparison between the two Enochs teaches us that Enoch the descendant of Seth walked with God in his daily life and he continued to love God (Gen 5:24). Although in all his life, he might not have established a city like Enoch of Cain (Gen 4:17), he pleased the Lord and therefore, God took him (Heb 11:5). Likewise, we should aim to please the Lord in all our lives instead of focusing our lives only on worldly success.
In the comparison between the two Lamechs, through his marriages to two wives and his proclamation of killing a young man for wounding him, Lamech the descendant of Cain continued to abide in sinful desires. On the other hand, Lamech of Seth was the father of Noah with whom God made a covenant (Gen 4:23, 6:18). By naming his own son, Noah, Lamech realized how the toil and hardship of work was due to God’s judgment on mankind and their disobedience toward God (Gen 5:29). The comparison of the two Lamechs teaches us that instead of dwelling in sin and its desires, we should fear God and His judgment to come for those who live in disobedience.
The Scriptures portray the significance of the phrase “[going] out from the presence of the Lord.” First, when God punished Cain for his sins and wickedness, Cain responded to the Lord that he would be hidden from God’s face (Gen 4:14). Thus, Cain went out from the presence of the Lord and he dwelt in the land of Nod away from God (Gen 4:16). Second, according to the book of Jonah, going out from the presence of the Lord means fleeing from the Lord and His commandments (Jon 1:3). The act of fleeing or going out from the presence of the Lord not only shows one’s disregard but also one’s disrespect and refusal toward God and His words. Third, the book of Leviticus and the book of
2nd Chronicles describe that one who is unclean, loves wickedness and hates the Lord will receive God’s wrath and will be cut off from God’s presence (Lev 22:3 and 2 Chr 33:23).
What were the legacies of the descendants of Cain?
What would you equate the success of Cain’s legacies in today’s term?Hide Answer
Cain’s descendants were able to obtain material wealth, pleasure, status, great skills and most importantly admiration from the people in their time.
Share how God measures our success and legacies.(The answer is empty)Hide Answer
How did sin reign over Lamech?Hide Answer
1) He let his lust controlled him. He took for himself two wives (4:19).
2) He let his anger controlled him. He killed a man who wounded him and he killed a young man who hurt him (4:23).
3) He was boastful. He proudly proclaimed to his wives about his ability and success to kill a man and a young man (4:23).
4) He was vengeful. He sternly stated that anyone who sought to kill him would be avenged seventy-sevenfold—eleven times heavier than the judgment God had pronounced on anyone who would kill Cain (4:24).
What was the purpose of Lamech’s words in verse 24?Hide Answer
Lamech’s words in verse 24, “If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, then Lamech seventy-sevenfold” mirrored what the Lord had said to Cain, “Therefore, whoever kills Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold” (4:15). Lamech’s words were a threat to anyone who planned to kill him because of the murder which he had committed.
What can we learn from Eve’s saying, “For God has appointed another seed for me instead of Abel, whom Cain killed”; a. About God’s power over sin: b. About God’s plan for mankind:Hide Answer
a. About God’s power over sin:
Though Cain had killed Abel, the one who was accepted by God; the Lord was able to appoint another seed to replace the one already killed. Here, we witness God’s power over sin. The gospel of John mentions how the Lord Jesus had the power over His own life, to lay it down or to take it again (Jn 10:18). Though the devil through the chief priests, elders and the Jews were able to take the Lord Jesus’ life (Mt 27:20, 25), He had the power to take it back again. Likewise, though Abel’s life was taken away by Cain’s sinful act, God had the power to appoint another seed for Eve, even set godly descendants. Through the descendants of this new seed, Seth, men began to call on the name of the Lord (Gen 4:26).
b. About God’s plan for mankind:
Though sin entered the world, the Lord still provides His abundant grace for mankind (Rm 5:12, 15). The entering of sin into the world, did not deter God’s free gift of salvation. The appointing of the new seed to continue godly descendants was a proof of God’s plan of salvation. The epistle of Paul to the Thessalonians says, “For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ” (
1 Thess 5:9). Because sin entered the world, death was upon all of us without any exception. Yet, God through the Lord Jesus Christ has appointed us to obtain salvation so that we may live together with Him.
Moreover, the appointing of a new seed also carries a responsibility for the appointed. In the gospel of John, the Lord Jesus says, “You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit…” (Jn 15:16). Also, in Acts 13:47, the writer narrates, “For so the Lord has commanded us: ‘I have set you as a light to the Gentiles, that you should be for salvation to the ends of the earth’” (Acts 13:47). These two verses remind us of our responsibilities of God’s appointed, not only to bear fruit of our repentance but also to become an example for the unbelievers. Only if we reflect God’s image and likeness in our daily conduct, can others see the Lord Jesus in us and receive His salvation.
Why did the men in Seth’s time begin to call on the name of the Lord?Hide Answer
According to the Psalmist, when one is in distress, one calls upon the Lord (Ps 18:6). The prophet Jeremiah in his sighing and crying for help also called on the name of the Lord (Lam 3:55-56). In
1 Kings 8:50-52, when the Israelites were calling on the name of the Lord, they presented their supplication and their need for God’s compassion in their lives. After sin entered the world, the punishment of God toward men was in effect. Men had to work in toil and in sweat in order to eat their bread (Gen 3:19). Moreover, the ground which they tilled produced thorns and thistles (Gen 3:23, 18). In their sufferings and hardships, men in Seth’s time began to cry out to the Lord asking for God’s compassion.
Furthermore, calling on the name of the Lord means requesting God’s blessing and guidance in life. Jabez pleaded with God to bless him and guide his life, keeping him from evil that would befall on him (
1 Chr 4:10). The curse, the punishment and the evil committed by Cain made the men in the time of Seth realized they needed God’s blessing and guidance to keep them from evil in their daily lives.
When did men begin to call on the name of the Lord?
To call on the name of the Lord, we must do so in faithfulness and repentance. The Psalmist said the Lord is near to all who call upon Him in truth (Ps 145:18). In other words, the Lord is near to those who fear Him and are faithful towards Him. In the book of Acts, calling on the name of the Lord also involves repentance. Ananias said to Saul, to become God’s witness he must wash away his sins first, calling on the name of the Lord (Acts 22:16). Therefore, calling on the name of the Lord is not just an act of the mouth, it has to come from the sincerity of the heart. The prophet Jeremiah warned the people of Judah, if they were adamant to be unfaithful toward God and did not repent, kept doing evil and many lewd deeds, God would not hear them in the time they cried out the name of the Lord (Jer 11:10-15). Calling on the name of the Lord must be shown in our sincerity to repent from sinful lives and return to God and faithfully serve Him.
What characterized the descendants of Seth?Hide Answer
1) Seth’s descendants lived very long lives. For example, Enosh lived 905 years (v.11). Cainan lived 910 years (v.14). Mahalel lived 895 years (v.17). Jared lived 962 years (v.20). Enoch’s days on earth were 365 years (v.23). Methuselah lived 969 years (v.27) and Lamech lived 777 years (v.31).
What was the purpose of Adam’s genealogy? And what lesson can we learn from it?Hide Answer
Adam’s genealogy was written as a remembrance that “in the day God created man, He made him in the likeness of God” (Gen 5:1). With the murder incident of Abel and how sin entered the world, men are to be reminded that originally, Adam was created in God’s own image and likeness (Gen 1:26, 27). Later, the genealogy emphasized Seth was begotten in Adam’s own image and likeness—which mean Seth also reflected God’s own image and likeness, just like his father (Gen 5:3).
Today, as children of God, we should also reflect God’s own image and likeness in our daily lives. The gospel of John reminds us that we are not of the world, just as God is not of the world (Jn 17:16). Although sin is in the world and its desire is for us, the Lord Jesus reminds us concerning our status: we are not of the world, rather we are created in His own image and likeness.
What is the obvious anomaly found in Gen 5:1-32 which breaks the repeated pattern?Hide Answer
The rest of the people listed experienced and could not escape death. Nevertheless, one man experienced the exception. Enoch did not experience death because God took him away while he was still alive (v.24).
What lessons can we learn from the phrase “Enoch walked with God”?Hide Answer
Walking with God shows our personal relationship with God and such act is shown by our deeds and thoughts. Genesis 6:9 tells us that Noah walked with God and he was a just man, perfect in his generations. Genesis 17:1 also describes how God wanted Abraham to walk before Him and be blameless. From the instances above, we learn that walking with God demands us to stand up against the sinful deeds of the world and live righteously before God.
Furthermore, walking with God requires us to keep certain attitudes toward Him. According to the prophet Micah, we are to walk with God in humility. And this is what is good and what the LORD requires of us that we “do justly,” “love mercy,” and “walk humbly with [our] God” (Mic 6:8). Besides humility, we need to walk in full submission. Deuteronomy 10:12 states that the Lord God expects of us to walk in all His ways and to keep His commandments and His statutes. In short, to walk with God, not only should we live justly, but we should also obey His commandments in total submission and humility.
What does the phrase “God took Enoch” in Genesis 5:24 mean?Hide Answer
The phrase “God took Enoch” means God received Enoch up to heaven, without letting him experience death (Gen 5:24; Heb 11:5). In other words, unlike the rest in his generation, Enoch did not experience the curse of the ground (Gen 3:17), the toil of his hands (Gen 5:28), and the return to the dust (Gen 3:19).
Today, how do we please God as Enoch did?Hide Answer
Hebrews 11:6 says, “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” Believing in God means recognizing that He is our Creator and our LORD. It also means entrusting ourselves to His sovereign will. According to the apostle Paul, such a belief must be put into practice. We must live according to the faith by staying away from the lust of the flesh and being different from the world (
1 Cor 10:5-10; Rom 12:2). But if we draw back from the faith and sin willfully after we have received the truth, we have displeased the LORD (Heb 10:26, 38).
How did Noah become a comfort to Lamech and the people around him?Hide Answer
Lamech called the name of his son, Noah, and said, “This one will comfort us concerning our work and the toil of our hands, because of the ground which the LORD has cursed” (Gen. 5:29). The toil and the cursed ground were consequences of man’s disobedience toward God and sin (Gen. 3:17). Through his son, Lamech hoped that Noah could bring comfort by living a righteous life to restore God’s favor upon men (Gen. 6:8, 9, 18).
In the end, Lamech’s hope was indeed realized. His son, Noah, turned out to be a just man, perfect in his generations by walking with God (Gen 6:9). Consequently, Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord (Gen 6:8), and through him, God renewed His blessings upon mankind (Gen 9:1).
Share your experience on how you have become a comfort toward others in your daily life.(The answer is empty)Hide Answer