Genesis 9: God’s Covenant With Noah

Earnest Examination

This series is presented as an honest, sincere look into the study of the Bible with my own personal theories, opinions, comments and that of others’ insights and research into what the verses could mean. I cannot claim one way or another that everything that I am stating is fact and the true meaning of what is meant in these verses.

To lay it out in a way that I can manage, I have highlighted the texts of verses that I either don’t understand or have a comment or question about in yellow. And the comments I’ve left beneath it will be of a smaller font and using brown text.

I would love it if you’d join me in this journey and if you have any insights and/or knowledge of these chapters/verses etc., please feel free to share with me and the other readers. Any chance to get a clearer understanding of the Bible and Jesus Christ would be welcomed with open arms.

All verses used are from biblestudytools.com (NIV) Genesis 9

God’s Covenant With Noah

1 Then God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth.
2 The fear and dread of you will fall on all the beasts of the earth, and on all the birds in the sky, on every creature that moves along the ground, and on all the fish in the sea; they are given into your hands.
Why was this a new rule that God implemented on the beings of the planet? According to this, one could surmise that before this event, all animals had no fear of humans and co-existed side by side peacefully. But after the flood, God changes this completely and makes animals at the mercy of humans. Was this a test to see who will still treat animals with kindness and empathy, even after having reign over them?
3 Everything that lives and moves about will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything.
So am I to assume that before the flood, no one ate meat? It brings me back to Abel’s offering/sacrifice of the best of his flock, and of Noah’s sacrifice of some of the “clean” animals that Noah brought onto the ark. This was not only acceptable to God, it was beloved; as we can see from God’s reaction to Abel’s offering and one of the main reasons, apparently, that God promised to never again curse the ground because of humans. …Because he loved the smell of burning meat so much. “21 The LORD smelled the pleasing aroma and said in his heart: “Never again will I curse the ground because of humans, even though every inclination of the human heart is evil from childhood. And never again will I destroy all living creatures, as I have done.” I honestly don’t know what to say about this revelation.
4 “But you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it.
Well, even God has his limits. Sadly, this common respect and courtesy for living creatures are indeed lost on some humans. For example, the military sent some of their troops to engage in a rather savage “survival” training camp that did encourage soldiers to eat/drink blood from live animals. And even admitted that the training program was not solely to teach survival skills, but rather to build a rapport with their fellow companions. “While the training exercise is marketed as a food procurement drill, officials have admitted it is intended to build camaraderie among troops in a manner resembling a barbaric hazing ritual.” – (WARNING: GRAPHIC MATERIAL) Military Training Drills Where Soldiers Eat Live Animals And Drink Snake Blood Could Spark New Pandemic, Says PETA

I don’t know about you, but if you look up the definition of ‘camaraderie‘, it states:
n. Goodwill and lighthearted rapport between or among friends; comradeship.
n. Companionship; good-fellowship; intimacy.
n. Comradeship and loyalty.

None of what was described in their “training drills” sounds like ‘goodwill’ or ‘lighthearted’ or ‘good-fellowship’ or anything of the sort and more like an occultic initiation rite to me.

Now some people will accuse others of judging based on cultural differences, but we have to ask ourselves, where do the rights of “cultural differences” stand when the beliefs are literally infringing upon other beings’ lives? “They’re just animals.” Yes. Animals with every right to living as well and not suffering through needless pain. Which again brings me to why a burnt offering of animals would be needed by the Lord and why it’s so hard for me to comprehend this idea in the first place.
5 And for your lifeblood I will surely demand an accounting. I will demand an accounting from every animal. And from each human being, too, I will demand an accounting for the life of another human being.
I know forgiveness is a huge factor in our lives, but I have to admit that I sometimes think of “karma” as being a real aspect and something that we’ll all have to face one of these days. Whether reincarnation is real or not, perhaps our deeds will go rewarded or punished depending on how we lived our life(lives). I have to be honest when I say that I hope that people get what’s coming to them – both the good and the bad. If someone is completely selfless and loving and spreads that, then I hope they get recompensed for all of their good-heartedness. If someone is evil/wicked, etc., then likewise, I hope they get what’s coming to them. I think it’s human nature to want to see good and bad people get what they inevitably deserve, and I have not yet “transcended” above that mentality.

With that being said, if someone is truly remorseful and regretful for all their bad deeds and turns their life around to show this, then by all means, forgiveness should most definitely be on the table and wipe the slate clean. I think this is one of the key attributes in clearing a kind of karmic debt/cycle. But the heart must be sincere in order for it to work.
6 “Whoever sheds human blood, by humans shall their blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made mankind.
Except Cain, right?
“Then the LORD put a mark on Cain so that no one who found him would kill him.”
Why did God show so much leniency to Cain when he was allegedly the first murderer on the planet? God even put upon him the protection from being killed by the hands of someone else, but yet this verse indicates that if you shed someone’s blood (like Cain did) then your blood will be shed by a human as well. Perhaps God changed his mind. Of course, we know this rule doesn’t necessarily reflect truth as we know it since there have been killers/murderers, etc. that get away with their crime and die peacefully in their sleep. So perhaps there’s something we’re missing to completely understand the context of these words.
7 As for you, be fruitful and increase in number; multiply on the earth and increase upon it.”
8 Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him:
9 “I now establish my covenant with you and with your descendants after you
10 and with every living creature that was with you—the birds, the livestock and all the wild animals, all those that came out of the ark with you—every living creature on earth.
11 I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be destroyed by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth.”
I think most of us might remember this story from our childhood; God’s promise to never destroy most of the world due to a flood ever again – hence the rainbow in the sky as a testament to this promise – however, as a lot of people have pointed out, the prophetic words of Revelation point to Fire as the next detrimental punishment the world will receive when the time comes. Perhaps there is a symbolic meaning behind this, seeing as how fire is often seen as the essence of purification.
12 And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come:
13 I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth.
14 Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds,
15 I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life.
16 Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.”
17 So God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant I have established between me and all life on the earth.”

The Sons of Noah

18 The sons of Noah who came out of the ark were Shem, Ham and Japheth. (Ham was the father of Canaan.)
19 These were the three sons of Noah, and from them came the people who were scattered over the whole earth.

I remember seeing an interesting depiction of these three sons of Noah, implicating the skin color of each one. There is so much controversy surrounding the nature of this, that, while I feel it prudent to study it and research the possible correlations between all of it, I am not going to address it on this post. Just bringing up the subject matter for future reference, and to connect this with the possible origins we have on the different kinds of ethnicities and cultures that we can see all around the world. I think it is a fascinating study into our history, although the theories and opinions differ greatly between multiple groups and are highly debatable and ultimately inconclusive.
20 Noah, a man of the soil, proceeded to plant a vineyard.
21 When he drank some of its wine, he became drunk and lay uncovered inside his tent.

This is more of a personal opinion, but I am not a big drinker, and, to be quite frank, I don’t think anyone else should be either. There is so much conflict and drama when alcohol is in the mix, and it leads to drastic decisions that probably could have been avoided simply by not imbibing the drink. There are (conspiracy) theories as to why alcohol is called ‘spirits’ to begin with. Maybe there’s a perfectly good reason why it’s called that. And it’s also a good reason why we should stay away from it. A little bit of it here and there is fine, but when one crosses the line into “drunkenness”, it most definitely becomes a problem. The consumption of alcohol directly weakens our cognitive functions, and, in my conspiratorial opinion, leaves one wide open for spiritual possession and impaired judgement.
22 Ham, the father of Canaan, saw his father naked and told his two brothers outside.
You wouldn’t think it simply by looking at this rather straight-forward statement, but it is, in fact, rife with hidden meaning. (That is, of course, contested, but what isn’t nowadays?)
When I first read this line, my mind automatically thought, “Well, so what? Noah’s son accidentally looked upon his drunken father’s nakedness. Is that really such a major deal? And his other sons simply took a garment and respectfully covered him. What’s to see here?”

23 But Shem and Japheth took a garment and laid it across their shoulders; then they walked in backward and covered their father’s naked body. Their faces were turned the other way so that they would not see their father naked.
But it wasn’t until I researched these verses that it made sense. What the term ‘saw his father naked‘ really means in Hebrew – is a euphemism for sleeping with his father’s wife.
Yes.
It means that Ham slept with his own mother.
Why Was Canaan Cursed?
This is of course, just one theory, but it’s the one that makes the most sense to me. After all, yes having someone take a peek at you while you’re laying naked is utterly embarrassing, but enough so to warrant cursing your own grandchild? Eh, not so much. However, a family member having an immoral relationship with another family member, especially one who you’re married to? And then to have that family member go behind your back and brag about it to other family members?…That makes more sense.
But that does raise the question as to why Noah cursed his grandchild to begin with and not Ham; the one who ACTUALLY committed the sin.

24 When Noah awoke from his wine and found out what his youngest son had done to him,
25 he said, “Cursed be Canaan! The lowest of slaves will he be to his brothers.”

There are debates as to if this is what is really meant by the “uncovered nakedness” means, and as I’ve stated, it is what makes most sense to me. If it was that Ham saw him naked and bragged about it to his brothers, then the severity of the curse doesn’t seem to fit the crime. If, however, it is because Ham committed incest with his mother and this is how Canaan was born, it falls into place more logically. Now the question is, was the mother complicit in this egregious deed; or was she overpowered and taken advantage of? Was it not only a crime of incest, but also of rape? The Bible doesn’t expand upon this further, so there is no way of knowing.

And through my own curiosity, since Noah automatically went to curse Canaan, I wondered if this child had already been born and was just the poor recipient of Noah’s wrath due to being the child of Ham, OR, if Noah knew that Canaan was going to be born from Ham’s incestuous relationship with his mother. The verse states “when Noah awoke from his wine” – could this have meant “when Noah awoke from his drunken stupor”? When looking up how long one can be drunk for, the answer was astonishing. If it was a matter of a single day/night in which Noah lay drunk and finally arose out of it, that would be one thing. But again, the Bible doesn’t specify. If, however, Noah was a consistent wine drinker to the point where he was a (even barely) “functioning drunk”, then this state could last for weeks, months, even years! Perhaps when he finally set the wine aside and sobered up, is when his other sons got through to him and let him know the grievous action that their brother committed. And during that time, Noah, seeing his wife pregnant and knowing that it wasn’t his but instead Ham’s, unleashed his curse on the unborn child.
26 He also said, “Praise be to the LORD, the God of Shem! May Canaan be the slave of Shem.
27 May God extend Japheth’s territory; may Japheth live in the tents of Shem, and may Canaan be the slave of Japheth.”

It seems as if Noah’s wrath onto Canaan is more of a retribution to smite Ham – forcing him to watch his son be at the mercy of others, but because to me it seems unfair to subject an otherwise innocent child to such hostility and animosity, it’s taking me awhile to wrap my head around it.
There is something that I’m reminded of and wonder if it has any relevance to the reaction of Noah to his grandson Canaan. In some reincarnation testimonies, children have been known to decide which parents they want to be born from. Could this be why Noah holds resentment to Canaan? Since Canaan allegedly chose to be born from this cursed union?
I will never forget when my son told me when he was around 4, “I’m glad I picked you to be my mommy.” (…I didn’t know it worked like that…) Of course I asked him what he meant by that, and he couldn’t quite explain it but stated it as a matter of fact thing, like “of course that’s how it works, silly”. He also regaled me with stories of what it was like INSIDE THE WOMB and me, being fascinated with what he was telling me, grabbed the nearest piece of paper and pen I could find and hastily scribbled down everything he was saying. Was this merely a fanciful imagination of a young child? Or was he remembering things that go far beyond our current comprehension?
Lastly, I want to bring up how sad it is that after God’s hard work at smiting the WHOLE PLANET (save but a few) because of the evil inclinations of the human heart, what happens next? Ham, one of the chosen few to be saved, goes out and SINS and brings corruption right back. …Really? Out of 8 people, they couldn’t just stay holy enough to not further curse the land? It’s not like they went ahead and listened to the Lord and repopulated the land AND THEN one of those foolish offspring brought about corruption. NO. We see it right away from one of Noah’s sons. You can’t tell me that God didn’t foresee this coming. Which begs the question, ‘why allow it’?

28 After the flood Noah lived 350 years.
29 Noah lived a total of 950 years, and then he died.

As we can see, the Lord does indeed work in mysterious ways and I can’t even pretend to know the hows, whats and whys and so on. All we can do is live life the best way we can, work on our own development and help others through their hardships and learn from our mistakes. We may never know the “ultimate plan” and why God allows certain things to happen, but to stay in a cynical, hard-hearted stubbornness of rebellion and disbelief is to shut out open-mindedness and understanding. Something that I am perpetually working on in my own life.

And again I want to reiterate that some of my thoughts and theories may be way off base, and I also research some other things on the side as well to try and get a broader understanding of what I’m reading, so please bear with me, or, even better, if you have insights that bring more light to these verses, please let me know.

I enjoy bouncing off theories and theology off of each other and love to hear other people’s perspectives on things. Thank you for reading and I look forward to hearing from you!

Fact checking is extremely important. I want to reiterate not to take everything at face value; no matter what you read, where you read it from, or who you hear it from. And to be clear, do not rely on “fact checking” websites to give you accurate information either. These are just as likely, (if not even more likely…), to feed false information and false debunking accounts to manipulate the reader. Please take everything into consideration before adhering to a certain narrative – and always keep your mind open to other possibilities.

Fair use disclaimer: Some of the links from this article are provided from different sources/sites to give the reader extra information and cite the sources, but does not necessarily mean that I endorse the contents of the site itself. Additionally, I have tried to provide links to the contents that I used from other sites as an educational and/or entertainment means only; if you feel that any information deserves further citation or request to be clarified, please let me know through the contact page.

Genesis 8: Noah’s Deliverance

Earnest Examination

This series is presented as an honest, sincere look into the study of the Bible with my own personal theories, opinions, comments and that of others’ insights and research into what the verses could mean. I cannot claim one way or another that everything that I am stating is fact and the true meaning of what is meant in these verses.

To lay it out in a way that I can manage, I have highlighted the texts of verses that I either don’t understand or have a comment or question about in yellow. And the comments I’ve left beneath it will be of a smaller font and using brown text.

I would love it if you’d join me in this journey and if you have any insights and/or knowledge of these chapters/verses etc., please feel free to share with me and the other readers. Any chance to get a clearer understanding of the Bible and Jesus Christ would be welcomed with open arms.

All verses used are from biblestudytools.com (NIV) Genesis 8

Noah’s Deliverance

1 But God remembered Noah and all the wild animals and the livestock that were with him in the ark, and he sent a wind over the earth, and the waters receded.
I am certainly not trying to put words in the mouth of the Bible, but I am wondering what this verse is alluding to. It’s not like God can forget Noah and his companions, right? At least in my upbringing, I was taught that God knows what is going on AT ALL TIMES, so it’s impossible for Him to “forget” anyone. Was this verse just a way to humanize God so that people can relate and understand some of His mysterious, but sovereign decisions? I truly don’t know.
2 Now the springs of the deep and the floodgates of the heavens had been closed, and the rain had stopped falling from the sky.
3 The water receded steadily from the earth. At the end of the hundred and fifty days the water had gone down,
When I was younger, I always assumed that after the infamous 40 days, that everything was hunky dory right after that. It didn’t even cross my mind that it would take time for the water to recede. I just thought, in my childish naivete, that after 40 days, the water would automatically have dissipated, and everyone could go on with their lives. To be honest, I didn’t even think otherwise until much later on in my adulthood. So to see it really spelled out for me and giving me a better outlook as to how long the process really took, was sort of shocking, to say the least. It makes me wonder what else we take for granted when it comes to information and basic knowledge.
4 and on the seventeenth day of the seventh month the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat.
You know, when I initially started this chapter, I thought I wouldn’t find much to comment on. But surprisingly, while doing some research on these specific places and time frame, actually found too much information that I couldn’t possibly cover all on this one post.
When looking up the mountains of Ararat, it took me to various sources of fascinating history:

– from the alleged eye-witness accounts of Noah’s Ark as early as the 1800’s (possibly even earlier), and then throughout the decades by various different adventurers – one including Vladimir Roskovitsky.
And if one digs deep enough, may find a connection between the “perfect timing” of Vladimir’s discovery, and the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917; which just so happened to cause the loss of the evidence of this historic find. (Hm… what does that remind me of? Oh yeah! The purported discovery of King Gilgamesh’s tomb in Baghdad, and then right after that, the US invasion of Iraq! Which also, in a strange turn of events, also just happened to lose evidence to these findings. Coincidence? Or completely planned?)

– to a hoax that CBS ran (not surprising), featuring a man named George Jammal who alleged to having witnessed the ark. It turned out that CBS was being duped by Mr. Jammal, even when he referred to some lovely names, such as: Mr. Asholian, Vladimir Sobitchsky, and Allis Buls Hitian.

– to the interesting references to Gilgamesh (which I ironically covered not too long ago in this post) and Ishtar (whom I also referenced due to the insane amount of symbolism that can be seen throughout the entertainment industry.) I am not making these connections on purpose. They are just “coincidentally” being mentioned when researching these seemingly different topics.
5 The waters continued to recede until the tenth month, and on the first day of the tenth month the tops of the mountains became visible.
6 After forty days Noah opened a window he had made in the ark
7 and sent out a raven, and it kept flying back and forth until the water had dried up from the earth.
8 Then he sent out a dove to see if the water had receded from the surface of the ground.
9 But the dove could find nowhere to perch because there was water over all the surface of the earth; so it returned to Noah in the ark. He reached out his hand and took the dove and brought it back to himself in the ark.
I want to make a mention that in some other versions of the Bible, the verses are rather specific in stating that the dove is female; describing the dove as “she”/”her”. Yet in this version, it does not mention the bird’s gender at all. This is very strange to me. It is almost as if this version (and others like it) made a deliberate decision to exclude the gender of the bird, for some reason.

Is the gender of the bird relevant? Important? To be honest, even if it wasn’t, if it is not an accurate translation of the original Bible, no matter the relevance, then it is still highly suspect and makes one wonder what else this translation has changed from the original version. I say “original” version because even though I don’t read Hebrew, Aramaic, etc. and can’t possibly know what the true original texts say, I am basing this information off of the Wycliffe Version which was allegedly written in the late 1300’s. If this is one of the earliest texts we have to go by, then their version states that the dove is female. Along with several other versions after that. The NIV, as well as a handful of others, seem to specifically omit this detail. It seems very bizarre that they would make a conscious effort to do so.

On the other hand, if there were no precise origins for the use of describing the bird as a female, and the translators do so out of their understanding or opinion, then I can understand why they would not want to specify. But it is just another reason that it is hard to take everything the Bible states as accurate, since there are too many different versions/translations/alterations. (It is also interesting to note that the Wycliffe version states that it was a crow, and not a raven, that Noah initially sent out to find land. If that has any significance on the matter.)
10 He waited seven more days and again sent out the dove from the ark.
11 When the dove returned to him in the evening, there in its beak was a freshly plucked olive leaf! Then Noah knew that the water had receded from the earth.
There are interesting debates as to whether plants could live through a flood of such magnitude, as many speculate that all plant life would drown/die off due to being overwhelmed by the deluge for so long; but scientifically speaking, plants/grass/seeds, etc. can indeed survive even after a considerable amount of undesirable conditions. (How Did Plants Survive and Disperse after the Flood?)
12 He waited seven more days and sent the dove out again, but this time it did not return to him.
13 By the first day of the first month of Noah’s six hundred and first year, the water had dried up from the earth. Noah then removed the covering from the ark and saw that the surface of the ground was dry.
14 By the twenty-seventh day of the second month the earth was completely dry.
15 Then God said to Noah,
16 “Come out of the ark, you and your wife and your sons and their wives.
17 Bring out every kind of living creature that is with you—the birds, the animals, and all the creatures that move along the ground—so they can multiply on the earth and be fruitful and increase in number on it.”
18 So Noah came out, together with his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives.
19 All the animals and all the creatures that move along the ground and all the birds—everything that moves on land—came out of the ark, one kind after another.

God’s Covenant with Creation

20 Then Noah built an altar to the LORD and, taking some of all the clean animals and clean birds, he sacrificed burnt offerings on it.
I mentioned it a little bit about this in the previous chapter with Cain and Abel, and I don’t want to insinuate that I know anything about how the world works, but I do question the… ritualistic aspect of building altars and sacrificing things for God. I am just confused and curious as to why this would be a practice. And to think it allegedly started with Cain and Abel offering their crops/flock. Why did they do this? Did God ask them to? There are some Christian apologetics who claim that yes, sacrifices were needed to appease God and show their faith to Him and/or to wipe away sin. Some even say there are biblical references that it needs to be a “blood sacrifice”, which then obviously wouldn’t include crops like Cain tried to offer. Of course, that is if we’re taking the scripts to be literal. And this is what I have a problem with.
Again, I can’t pretend to think that I know better about how “life” and this world works, but speaking as a person who believes in spirituality and the goodness of one’s heart, the act of sacrificing anything “for the higher good” is lost on me.

21 The LORD smelled the pleasing aroma and said in his heart: “Never again will I curse the ground because of humans, even though every inclination of the human heart is evil from childhood. And never again will I destroy all living creatures, as I have done.
And that brings me to this verse. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love animals and am trying to transition to vegetarian-ism, although I haven’t fully reached that destination quite yet, so I must admit that I love the smell of a good barbecue as much as the next person. But again, the mystery of a burnt offering that is pleasing to the Lord escapes me. So unless I am just not understanding how a universal creator could be tempted by the smell of delicious meats and (basically?) requires blood sacrifices in order to wipe sin away, perhaps I am just misconstruing the deeper, philosophical meaning, or – there is something not quite accurate with this interpretation.

Then, to make matters even more confusing, since there is no real proof of who wrote Genesis to begin with, we have to ask ourselves, how did the author know what the Lord said “in his heart”? Did God reveal this to the author? If the author was Moses, like some biblical scholars believe, then perhaps Moses himself received visions of this very revelation and was led to write it down for prosperity sakes and at the command of God for our enlightenment. Of course it’s said that the Bible is the Word of God in and of itself, so perhaps this makes sense. But obviously I am not sure on this matter, and will have to do more extensive research on this to even get close to understanding this subject. Especially since there is no concrete evidence either way.

One more note, God admits that “every inclination of the human heart is evil from childhood“. According to these Bible verses. But yet, He still found some worthy of being saved. Now, again, the knowledge of who is written in the Book of Life (who will be saved) is already known to Him. He already knows who has a good heart (even though we’re all born with evil inclinations, supposedly) and who will remain steadfast and have faith. So we have to address the whole act of unleashing the flood upon the world, save but a few, knowing that in the end, those very same few will give rise to the current situations we have today, and eventually who leads us to the apocalypse in Revelation.

God sees all, so it seems as if predestination vs. free will is still a highly debated topic and possibly won’t end until the whole world does. And if Noah and his extended family ended up completely innocent of this, then we have to come to terms that not everyone died during the flood. Plus when you take into account that the previous chapter about Nephilims stated that they lived before, and after, the flood, it makes one wonder how they survived or came back into being. – And I can go on and on with “human heart is evil” verse, but I will just end this topic here before I get too long-winded.
22 “As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease.”

Like I said above, I could go on and on about the human heart and our inclinations, but that might have to be on a separate post. I was also really intrigued by the historical connections to King Gilgamesh and Ishtar, as well as the strange coincidences that as soon as the alleged Ark was found (along with the other ancient discoveries), there were invasions to these countries that just so happened to eradicate any evidence of it. Very strange, indeed…

 

Again, I want to reiterate that some of my thoughts and theories may be way off base, and I also research some other things on the side as well to try and get a broader understanding of what I’m reading, so please bear with me, or, even better, if you have insights that bring more light to these verses, please let me know.

I enjoy bouncing off theories and theology off of each other and love to hear other people’s perspectives on things. Thank you for reading and I look forward to hearing from you!

Fact checking is extremely important. I want to reiterate not to take everything at face value; no matter what you read, where you read it from, or who you hear it from. And to be clear, do not rely on “fact checking” websites to give you accurate information either. These are just as likely, (if not even more likely…), to feed false information and false debunking accounts to manipulate the reader. Please take everything into consideration before adhering to a certain narrative – and always keep your mind open to other possibilities.

Fair use disclaimer: Some of the links from this article are provided from different sources/sites to give the reader extra information and cite the sources, but does not necessarily mean that I endorse the contents of the site itself. Additionally, I have tried to provide links to the contents that I used from other sites as an educational and/or entertainment means only; if you feel that any information deserves further citation or request to be clarified, please let me know through the contact page.

Earnest Examination

Genesis 16: Hagar and Ishmael - Earnest Examination
Genesis 14: Abram Rescues Lot - Earnest Examination
Genesis 13: Abram Inherits Canaan - Earnest Examination
Genesis 12: The Call of Abram - Earnest Examination
Genesis 11: The Tower of Babel - Earnest Examination
Genesis 10: The Table of Nations - Earnest Examination
Genesis 8: Noah’s Deliverance - Earnest Examination
Genesis 7: The Flood Begins - Earnest Examination

Genesis 4: Cain and Abel

Earnest Examination

To start, I’ve realized that I have never read the Bible front to back, and so would like to remedy that. On some of my posts, I quote from the Bible, which I feel is a little insincere if I’m not going to study the whole Bible. So this is my chance to get closer to the Word and really understand the book that I occasionally quote from. 

Originally, I was going to start with the New Testament as a friend has advised me to do, since when I started on the Old Testament I kept getting hung up on what I saw at the time were contradictions, and baseless wickedness and corruption. It repelled me from the Bible. She mentioned that that is exactly why Jesus Christ came. To do away with the “old” ways and bring about a new, better way of living. Which is to love and care about one another. The reason the Old Testament is so important is so that we know the conditions of how the world used to be, before Jesus Christ arrived to show us a more peaceful and loving way to be. 

Now that I feel I may have a better understanding of this, I am compelled to start from “The Beginning“, both literally and figuratively. After having attempted Matthew 3, I realize that I am constantly having the urge to go back through the Bible to check references and names, etc. Since my desire is to take this one step at a time and build upon the knowledge based upon the timeline laid out before us in the Bible, I have decided to revisit the time I tried to read the Bible front to back, and see if my old views still stand. 

Make no mistake, I will still have questions and ponderings about why God decided to do the things He’s done (and of course more questions on top of that), but I have learned not to condemn or judge such actions since I do feel some things are beyond our understandings and it is not my place to judge. I will try my best to look at it from an unbiased and simply curious, thoughtful mind. 

To lay it out in a way that I can manage, I have highlighted the texts of verses that I either don’t understand or have a comment or question about in yellow. And the comments I’ve left beneath it will be of a smaller font and using brown text.

I would love it if you’d join me in this journey and if you have any insights and/or knowledge of these chapters/verses etc., please feel free to share with me and the other readers. Any chance to get a clearer understanding of the Bible and Jesus Christ would be welcomed with open arms.

All verses used are from biblestudytools.com (NIV) Genesis 4

Cain and Abel

1 Adam made love to his wife Eve, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Cain. She said, “With the help of the LORD I have brought forth a man.”
2 Later she gave birth to his brother Abel. Now Abel kept flocks, and Cain worked the soil.
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.

When I first read these verses, I was thinking, for one, why would the Lord care about material offerings? Like sacrifices? To me, to my understanding at the time, God wouldn’t be swayed by materialistic offerings. After all, even without attempting to study the Bible, it’s known to not place your heart and desire onto material things. So it confused me as to why He was so pleased by the offering that Abel gave him. And was there any significance in sacrificing the “firstborn” of his flock?
My second thought was, “does God have favorites?”. I know, it might seem a bit juvenile or amateurish, but to claim that one understands exactly what’s going on in the thoughts of God or any others for that matter, is presumptuous and only speculation.

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.”

So after trying to come to an understanding about why God would be accepting of Abel’s offering and not Cain’s, it seems as if the answer lies in the thoughts and the intention of those making the offering. Since Abel gave up his (presumably) prized firstborn of his flock with the hopes of honoring God, while Cain, it seems, merely offered up his crops (and not the best ones – but just some regular crops… I suppose), Cain was more doing it out of an obligation than out of sincerity.
So it seems what this boils down to, is that God knows what’s inside our hearts, and if we are doing the right thing rather than just pretending or “putting on a show”, if you will, then you will find favor with the Lord. Since God knew already that Cain did not have pure intentions, his offering was looked down upon as not worthy.
Again, these are merely my interpretations of things that I gather from further studying of other sources and commentary, as well as trying to glean understandings from the Bible, so if this is completely wrong, then please address this with me. I would appreciate it!

8 Now Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.” While they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.
Well, that was fast.
This reminds me of when you watch a show or a movie, and there’s something obviously edited out of the portion you just watched, and it confuses you and makes you wonder what part was missing. This is exactly how I feel during these verses. Now it could be because we don’t get a first-person view of Cain’s thought processes during all this, but just the mere fact that right after God told Cain that he should do what is right and that he must rule over sin, Cain commits murder right in the next verse. I don’t know about you, but this seems a little premature.
Right after God tells him that speech? What other details happened in between that time? If any of us are at all familiar with the Bible and other influences into how the Bible came to be about, we would know about the many, MANY books that were edited out of the final version. Could there be additional answers and information that fill in the dots throughout some of the Gnostic / Apocrypha, and perhaps other texts that have yet to be found or have been destroyed?

9 Then the LORD said to Cain, “Where is your brother Abel?” “I don’t know,” he replied. “Am I my brother’s keeper?”
10 The LORD said, “What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground.

It’s interesting to me that God asked Cain where Abel is, although the notion is that God already knows. So was God asking this of Cain as a way to test him? Either way, God would already know what Cain’s answer will be, so can I surmise that God involves Himself in pretenses and, like I mentioned in a previous chapter, participates in the role that He was destined to fill? Perhaps it’s because Cain does not know about God’s omniscience, and so God was indeed testing the heart of these people (even if He already knew) because these people did not already know that this is what is going on.
11 Now you are under a curse and driven from the ground, which opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand.
12 When you work the ground, it will no longer yield its crops for you. You will be a restless wanderer on the earth.”
13 Cain said to the LORD, “My punishment is more than I can bear.
14 Today you are driving me from the land, and I will be hidden from your presence; I will be a restless wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.”
15 But the LORD said to him, “Not so ; anyone who kills Cain will suffer vengeance seven times over.” Then the LORD put a mark on Cain so that no one who found him would kill him.

I am confused about what Cain is describing as ‘the land’. Adam and Eve were already expelled from the Garden of Eden. To wander other parts of the Earth, I assumed. Now here is Cain, talking about being driven from the land, again, and being doomed to be a restless wanderer on the Earth. He says it like the part of land he did live in was separate than that of the Earth. Am I misunderstanding this verse or looking too much into it? Does it simply mean that he was driven out of one area of land into another?

Then we have God’s mercy on Cain even though Cain killed his brother allegedly right after God lectured him on doing the right thing. It seems as if Cain took the rebellious route anyway and latched on to his envy and pride and killed his brother knowing that it was wrong. Even while knowing the presence of the Almighty.

Think of it this way. Cain knew God and spoke with Him, literally offered up his crops to Him only to have his offerings rejected. But Cain knew His presence. Knew His existence. In today’s age, we have to have belief and faith and many of us have not seen God (that we know of) or spoken with Him, and we are still expected to stand for what’s right. Cain literally was in the presence of God and still sinned. How much harder would it be for the rest of us? (I am not condoning sinning just because we haven’t had the same situation as Cain and Abel, just pointing out how much more of a disadvantage those of us in today’s time would likely be compared to those in the Beginning.)
And again, even after Cain kills his own brother, God still shows mercy and protects Cain from being killed by any other.

16 So Cain went out from the LORD’s presence and lived in the land of Nod, east of Eden.
Again, this verse alludes to the fact that the land in which Cain lived with his family was filled with God’s presence. I have already assumed that it’s not the Garden of Eden since Adam and Eve were expelled from there before Cain and Abel were even born. Is this correct? If so, am I to conclude that there are two different levels that the Adam and Eve family lived in before they came to Earth? The first being the Garden of Eden, for Adam and Eve. Then they were cast out of there onto a different land, but still within God’s presence, before Cain was expelled from this second place onto what we call Earth? Again, not all of the dots are filled and one can only theorize or speculate as to what these verses mean.
17 Cain made love to his wife, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Enoch. Cain was then building a city, and he named it after his son Enoch.
18 To Enoch was born Irad, and Irad was the father of Mehujael, and Mehujael was the father of Methushael, and Methushael was the father of Lamech.
19 Lamech married two women, one named Adah and the other Zillah.
20 Adah gave birth to Jabal; he was the father of those who live in tents and raise livestock.
21 His brother’s name was Jubal; he was the father of all who play stringed instruments and pipes.
22 Zillah also had a son, Tubal-Cain, who forged all kinds of tools out of bronze and iron. Tubal-Cain’s sister was Naamah.
23 Lamech said to his wives, “Adah and Zillah, listen to me; wives of Lamech, hear my words. I have killed a man for wounding me, a young man for injuring me.
24 If Cain is avenged seven times, then Lamech seventy-seven times.”

I decided to skip the verses above because most of those names I am unfamiliar with at this time. However, I wanted to point out that while Lamech killed someone for hurting him, are we to take this to mean that Lamech did this in self-defense? And is this why Lamech has a higher degree of being avenged? Because it was not a kill out of spite like that of Cain’s, but that of self defense? Also, if we want to get technical with the whole family line, then I am assuming that it was a family member that Lamech killed, since at the time, presumably, there are no other human beings on the planet besides Cain’s family (and Adam and Eve still in the different land that they live in – without anyone else since Cain killed his only other sibling). As a matter of fact, we are all related to each other if we all ultimately came from Adam and Eve.

For that matter, although this chapter briefly mentions genealogy, where did the two women that Lamech married come from? Again, I am assuming they came from within Cain’s own family line, so they’re all interbred with one another. We don’t get clear information on who Adah and Zillah are in relation to the others. And with that being said, where on Earth (no pun intended) did Cain’s wife come from?? What are we missing here? Did Adam and Eve have a daughter and this is who Cain married and had children with?
If this was the case, why does the Bible not expand upon this? Where is the information?

I want to mention, again, if one were to check out the Gnostic/Apocrypha texts, it starts to fill in holes that are left out of the Bible. What are we to make of this? Why were these texts not included if it provides more insight into what happened? Is there false information in these texts that are meant to mislead the reader? Or is there more truth in these texts that are deliberately being kept out? Or, as some people speculate, is the Bible a mixture of different religions/myths all rolled into one as an attempt at population control? The bottom line would be, what is the core message of the Bible and does it align with how we should be living on Earth? And the endless pursuit of Truth should lead us closer to the answers. (And as I’ve touched on “channeled material” and vibrations, if one takes consciousness and energy/vibration into account, does everything ultimately depend on our belief/thought system?)
25 Adam made love to his wife again, and she gave birth to a son and named him Seth, saying, “God has granted me another child in place of Abel, since Cain killed him.”
Nowhere is it mentioned that Adam and Eve gave birth to a daughter (yet). So again, I have to ask, where did Cain’s wife come from? She didn’t just fall out of the sky. (Or did she…?)
Now perhaps the Bible didn’t feel it necessary to mention the daughter(s) for one reason or another. Still, it is highly suspect and has to make one wonder why this wasn’t touched upon. Maybe it does in later verses, but as of now we are left in the dark as to this mystery. And the specific way as to how this particular verse alludes to Adam and Eve creating another child to replace Abel neglects to mention the possibility of any other children. Perhaps the significance of male children (son Seth to replace son Abel) was to be focused upon instead of the daughter(s) at this time.

26 Seth also had a son, and he named him Enosh. At that time people began to call on the name of the LORD.

Although I am only 4 chapters into Genesis, I already have many questions and ponderings as to the missing information that I feel would help fill in some of the gaps. As it is now, I do further studies and research into the questions I have, and, as we’ll see later on in the chapter, some of those answers are, indeed, found. If one were to look at the Bible as a mystery novel (for example), there would be no other alternative but to continue reading to see if further revelations will be revealed. Likewise, I can’t expect to have all the answers laid out neatly in a line. So I feel as if reading through and conducting additional research helps.

And again I want to reiterate that some of my thoughts and theories may be way off base, and I also research some other things on the side as well to try and get a broader understanding of what I’m reading, so please bear with me, or, even better, if you have insights that bring more light to these verses, please let me know.

I enjoy bouncing off theories and theology off of each other and love to hear other people’s perspectives on things. Thank you for reading and I look forward to hearing from you!

Fact checking is extremely important. I want to reiterate not to take everything at face value; no matter what you read, where you read it from, or who you hear it from. And to be clear, do not rely on “fact checking” websites to give you accurate information either. These are just as likely, (if not even more likely…), to feed false information and false debunking accounts to manipulate the reader. Please take everything into consideration before adhering to a certain narrative – and always keep your mind open to other possibilities.

Fair use disclaimer: Some of the links from this article are provided from different sources/sites to give the reader extra information and cite the sources, but does not necessarily mean that I endorse the contents of the site itself. Additionally, I have tried to provide links to the contents that I used from other sites as an educational and/or entertainment means only; if you feel that any information deserves further citation or request to be clarified, please let me know through the contact page.