The very first example of brotherhood we see in the Bible isn’t a flattering story, but it is a call to action. It begins where every relationship with God should—with worship: “When it was time for the harvest, Cain presented some of his crops as a gift to the Lord. Abel also brought a gift—the best portions of the firstborn lambs from his flock. The Lord accepted Abel and his gift, but he did not accept Cain and his gift” (Genesis 4:3-5).
Both Cain and Abel brought their unique worship to God, but God only accepted Abel’s. The problem was that Cain brought a casual sacrifice, not his first or his best. Abel brought his first fruits, the best of what he produced, and God was delighted with it. What is our worship like? Casual and left over? Or is it fervent, the best of what we have? Worship should always cost us dearly.
The problem with sin is that it produces responses to our circumstances other than worship. God’s rejection of his gift made Cain angry and depressed, and he gave in to sin and did something he must have regretted—killing his brother.
But God doesn’t leave us when we mess up. He came to Cain afterward and asked, “Where is your brother, Abel?” He wanted to help him like a good Father, but Cain deflected, asking, “Am I my brother’s keeper?”
The answer to Cain’s question, a question we should be asking ourselves, is a resounding yes. We are our brothers’ keepers. We must start taking responsibility for the lost in our family, in our circles of influence, and in our neighborhoods. Just as Abel’s blood cried out to God, spilled out as a curse on the ground, the blood of so many in this generation cries out to God—the unborn who are murdered every day, girls sold into sexual slavery, black men violently killed due to profiling. It doesn’t matter what color our skin is, what age or sex we are; our blood is the same color. We as a church must step up and say we won’t let the ground around us remain cursed because of that blood.
The blood of Jesus breaks the curse on our land—the curse of isolation, the curse of the orphan spirit—every curse that Cain’s actions perpetuated and so many people around us continue to live under. We have the answer; we live in community with the Holy Spirit who is the answer, and it’s time for a YES movement to begin as we take responsibility for our brothers and sisters.
Prayer is the catalyst for saving the lost. It’s the number one thing we can do to get them saved. It is both the means by which God gets involved in drawing the lost and a source of boldness so that we can do our part in reaching them. Take responsibility to pray for someone during the 21 Days of Prayer. Just wait and see what happens.
Watch Ps David’s full sermon here.