Doors of the Bible, Part One, The Door to Our Hearts

This series looks at the many door that are mentioned in the Bible and celebrates what a blessing it is to know Jesus, the ultimate door and entrance to life eternal in heaven. In part one of this series we look at the door to our hearts through the story of Cain and Abel found in Genesis, chapter four:

[1] Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain, saying, “I have gotten a man with the help of the LORD.” [2] And again, she bore his brother Abel. Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, and Cain a worker of the ground. [3] In the course of time Cain brought to the LORD an offering of the fruit of the ground, [4] and Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat portions. And the LORD had regard for Abel and his offering, [5] but for Cain and his offering he had no regard. So Cain was very angry, and his face fell. [6] The LORD said to Cain, “Why are you angry, and why has your face fallen? [7] If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is contrary to you, but you must rule over it.”
[8] Cain spoke to Abel his brother. And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel and killed him. [9] Then the LORD said to Cain, “Where is Abel your brother?” He said, “I do not know; am I my brother’s keeper?” [10] And the LORD said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood is crying to me from the ground. [11] And now you are cursed from the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand. (ESV)

“Sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is contrary to you, but you must rule over it.”

These are the words the Lord spoke to Cain, the oldest son of Adam and Eve, warning him not harm to his brother Abel. But Cain did not listen to the Lord. He lured his brother out into the field, away from anyone else, and there in the field Cain killed him.

The reason why Cain was so angry? He was jealous. Both Cain and Abel had brought sacrifices to the Lord. The Lord accepted Abel and his sacrifice but he did not accept Cain and his sacrifice.

So in Cain’s twisted mind the way to handle this problem was not to repent for bringing an inferior sacrifice and start bringing acceptable sacrifices, his solution was to kill his brother because his brother was making him look bad.

None of this escaped the Lord’s notice. He goes and confronts Cain with the murder of his brother. He gives Cain the opportunity to confess his sin by asking, “Where is your brother?”

Instead of confessing, Cain lies and says, “I do not know. Am I my brother’s keeper?”

So the Lord says, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood is crying to me from the ground. And now you are cursed from the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand.”

In part one of this series, Doors of the Bible, we will focus on the Lord’s words to Cain, “Sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is contrary to you, but you must rule over it.”

The Lord tells Cain three things:
Sin is crouching at the door
Its desire is contrary to you
You must rule over it.

The door that the Lord is talking about is the door to Cain’s heart. And today, thousands of years later, sin is still crouching at the heart of every believer.

It is crouching because it does not want to be detected. It wants to crouch down so that we don’t see it and, at the opportune time, rise up and jump into our hearts.

Sin almost always disguises itself as something good, beneficial. But then when we fall for it, we find out all too late that it is evil.

It’s desire is contrary to you. The original word and other translations have it as, “Sin wants to rule over you.” Or “It wants to have you.” That’s what sin still wants. It wants to rule over us.

It wants to take control of every one of our thoughts and words and actions. And yes, it still is quite willing to commit murder to keep controlling us.

Now here comes the hard part. The Lord says to Cain, “You must rule over it.” Instead of letting sin rule over us we need to rule over it.

But how is that possible? We are powerless against sin. We may not be murderers like Cain but if we are honest with ourselves, we have no more power over sin than he did. When sin uncoils itself and pounces so often it walks right through the doors of our hearts.

We can’t get the upper hand against sin. We need Christ to overcome sin. In particular, we need the cross of Christ to do so. Instead of crouching at sin’s door, Jesus confronted sin on the cross and won the victory for us.

Verse four of the hymn, “Glory Be To Jesus” puts it this way:

Abel’s blood for vengeance, pleaded to the skies
But the blood of Jesus, for our pardon cries.

And because through Christ we have the power to rule over sin, we then bring offerings that are truly pleasing to the Lord, the very best we have to offer. Notice it said God had regard for Abel and his offering. In God’s eyes our offerings represent our very selves.

We sing in the song, “Oh That the Lord would guide my ways”
“Order my footsteps by Thy Word, and make my heart sincere;
Let sin have no dominion, Lord, but keep my conscience clear.”

Guarding the door to our hearts from sin will be needed till the day we die. Through his death and resurrection for us Jesus slams the door on sin by washing it away with his precious blood. His great sacrifice for our sins motivates us to bring God-pleasing offerings to the Lord.

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