The story of Cain and Abel is repeated daily in Christian churches.
Every day, Christians – good or bad – present their offerings.
Most deposit the fruit of their labor before the Altar, while the minority deposits the firstfruits along with the fat on the Altar.
Apparently, Cain’s offering had value because it was voluntary. God did not ask for anything. He, in the course of some time, presented some of the land’s produce as an offering to the LORD.
He probably attributed the miracle of multiplication to the Lord and wanted to thank Him.
Disgraceful offerings, offerings with disdain, offerings with ill will, offerings given with complaint, unclean offerings, pleasant offerings and all others reflect what is in the heart of the offering giver.
The offering is a colored photograph of the offering giver’s heart before God.
When it is an unclean offering (hurt), Jesus teaches:
Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Matthew 5.23-24
Few people know this.
God did not mention the type of produce or its quality, like He did with Abel’s offering. He simply rejected it because of the offering giver’s heart.
It remained before the Altar and rotted, the same way as the life of Cain did for the rest of his days.
All this happened because there was something bad in him:
If you do well, will you not be accepted?
If he did what was right, it would’ve been accepted.
And if you do not do well, sin lies at the door. – said the LORD.
Unlike Cain, as keeper of sheep, Abel brought the firstfruits of his flock and their fat.
Nothing random or done without thinking.
He sought and chose among his large flock something that expressed faith, love, gratitude, and fear.
Something that reflected his personal surrender.
He truly wanted to please the Lord…
No wonder that, on account of his offering, he attained to God’s testimony of being righteous.
By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks. Hebrews 11.4