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The relevant verses are:-

  • Gen 4:8-10 KJV And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.[ my emphasis] (v.9) And the LORD said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother's keeper? (v.10) And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground.

The pictures you see in Sunday school etc are of Cain standing over the body of Abel with a massive club, but I believe this is wrong and that Abel was disembowelled by Cain with a knife. However to fully understand the weapon used one must see the preceding verses and understand what led up to it and what it would involve.

Go back to the verses before Cain murders Abel: why were they there in the first place? They were there to give offerings to God:-

Gen 4:1-5 KJV And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD. (v.2) And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. (v.3) And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD. (v.4) And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof[my highlighting and underlining]. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering: (v.5) But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. [my underlining]. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.

Both knew they had to give offerings, but how did they know? It's a bit of a coincidence that each suddenly said, "Hey! I've got this wonderful idea......". Both knew they had to not just give an offering, but that it had to be a particular type, because otherwise God would not have approved one and not the other.

Rom 2:11 KJV For there is no respect of persons with God

Offerings were often consumed by fire from God, such as in the time of Moses:-

Lev 9:24 And there came a fire out from before the LORD, and consumed upon the altar the burnt offering and the fat[my emphasis]: which when all the people saw, they shouted, and fell on their faces.

It is reasonable to assume this would also have been the case earlier on in the time of Cain and Abel. This means the Divine acceptance of Abel's offering would have been obvious, because it would have been 'zapped' by fire, whereas Cain's wouldn't have been. Cain was rather upset:-

Gen 4:1-5 KJV... And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell

This point about "the fat" is very easily passed over, but God wouldn't have put it in without a reason. It is important and it's implications are wide-reaching.

God does not change:-

Mal 3:6 For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.

This means that, just as we know what God will do in the present or future by seeing what He has done in the past, so we know what God has done in the past by looking at the present or what He will do in the future. Therefore, it's safe to say that sacrificial procedures at the time of Cain and Abel would have been the same as at the time of Moses.

I know Abel offered a lamb instead of a ram, so that therefore the procedural requirements with this ram sacrifice as in Exodus may therefore be different, but what it says about the 'other ram' in the burnt offering is most enlightening:-

Exo 29:15-21 KJV Thou shalt also take one ram; and Aaron and his sons shall put their hands upon the head of the ram. (v.16) And thou shalt slay the ram, and thou shalt take his blood, and sprinkle it round about upon the altar. (v.17) And thou shalt cut the ram in pieces, and wash the inwards of him, and his legs, and put them unto his pieces, and unto his head. (v.18) And thou shalt burn the whole ram upon the altar: it is a burnt offering [my emphasis] unto the LORD: it is a sweet savour, an offering made by fire unto the LORD. (v.19) And thou shalt take the other ram; and Aaron and his sons shall put their hands upon the head of the ram. (v.20) Then shalt thou kill the ram, and take of his blood [my emphasis], and put it upon the tip of the right ear of Aaron, [my comment ie someone else has to put it on Aaron's ear, he can't do it himself ] and upon the tip of the right ear of his sons [my emphasis], and upon the thumb of their right hand [my emphasis] , and upon the great toe of their right foot [my emphasis], and sprinkle the blood upon the altar round about [my emphasis] . (v.21) And thou shalt take of the blood that is upon the altar [my emphasis], and of the anointing oil, and sprinkle it upon Aaron [my emphasis], and upon his garments, and upon his sons, and upon the garments of his sons with him: and he shall be hallowed, and his garments, and his sons, and his sons' garments with him.

If the same type of procedure was followed with Abel's sacrifice of the lamb, these ritual requirements would explain:

(i) -how Abel would let Cain get so close to him in the first place,

(because it would have been obvious Cain was upset and angry, and normally you would stay out of that person's way).

(ii)-How Cain could get close enough to Abel to be able to attack him

(if you have to put blood on someone's ear you are very close to them.)

(iii)-How enough volume of blood was shed to be able to soak into the ground.

The pictures you see in Sunday school etc are of Cain standing over the body of Abel with a massive club in his hand, with no-one else around.

I believe this is wrong because you can't very well get close to someone while both angry and carrying or concealing a club without the other person being well aware of it and fearing for their life, and anyway you couldn't get closer than an arm's length because you need room to lift the club over your head to strike, and that would give even more time for the would-be victim to flee for their life.

Think of TV crime shows like "CSI" or the equivalent: when someone is murdered they don't lose that much blood because they are dead and their heart has stopped pumping blood. Even if Cain had smashed Abel's head in with a club he wouldn't have lost that much blood, yet all the verses imply copious amounts of blood or it wouldn't have been memorable for that reason.

Gen 4:10 And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground.

Mat 23:35 That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.

Heb 12:24 And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel.

This blood volume could be easily be explained by these ritualistic requirements: After Abel killed the lamb, he had to put blood on Cain's ear. To do this, they would have to be within arm's length of each other. Abel would have been concentrating on putting blood on Cain's ear, and he would have swapped his knife from his right hand, used to kill the lamb, to his left hand. Otherwise it would have meant Abel putting blood on the knife-point to put on Cain's ear, and I don't think he would have done that: Cain might have got the wrong idea! It's more likely that, as Abel was transferring the knife from his right hand to his left so he could put blood on his own finger to then put on Cain's ear, that Cain wrested the knife from Abel when he was transferring it from one hand to the other, and disembowelled him.

(iv)-how other people knew what was said.

Because Abel's sons were there for the the procedural requirements and heard and witnessed everything;

(v) -how others knew what happened and why he had to flee.

Because Abel's sons were there for the the procedural requirements and witnessed Cain murdering their father, and they were out for blood (bad joke!): they were out for vengeance. If there were no witnesses he wouldn't have had a price on his head.

Gen 4:14 Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the earth; and from thy face shall I be hid; and I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth; and it shall come to pass, that every one that findeth me shall slay me.

To summarize, Cain killed Abel by disembowelling him with the same knife used for sacrificing animals.

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โˆ™ 2012-10-23 11:52:52
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Q: What murder weapon did Cain use on abel?
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