‘What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit’ (Jn 3:6). Adam, whom the scripture describes as ‘a type of the one who has to come’ (Rom 5:14) was the first man born of the Spirit. As long as he remained a spiritual man, he could experience an intimate relation with God who walked with him in the garden. But on that fateful day, the spiritual man disregarded the voice of God who was still beside him, and instead was swayed by the deception of the devil. At that moment, the spiritual man became a man of the world.
It is impossible for ‘those who are unspiritual’ (1 Cori 2:14) to father spiritual children. There is no other reason for Cain to become a worldly man. The mandate of Jesus was to again transform unspiritual men into new creatures in Spirit. And Jesus accomplished it in all its fineness. But the Bible warns us of a dangerous time when the spiritual man will again turn into a man whose ‘mind will be set on the flesh and who will be hostile to God’ (cf. Rom 8:7). At that time the general human nature will not be compatible with what a spiritual man should do.
‘People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, inhuman, implacable, slanderers, profligates, brutes, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to the outward form of of godliness but denying its power’ (2 Tim 3: 2-5).
Just like Adam was a type of Jesus who was the Second Adam, Cain represents the type of those people about whom Paul warned us through Timothy.
Cain also held to the ‘outward form of godliness’. This is why he decided to offer a sacrifice to God!
Paul tells us that the appearance of such people will be a sign of ‘the last days (when) distressing times will come’ ( 2 Tim 3:1).
Look around. Do you see such people? Before looking around, look into us as well. Do such traits rule our heart? For them Paul writes again. ‘Are you so foolish? Having started with the Spirit, are you now ending with the flesh?’ (Gal 3:3).
Our journey should start with the Spirit, progress in the Spirit, and end in the Spirit. Let us pray to the Holy Spirit for our life not to be distracted by the ways of this world.
And we should do it fully knowing ‘what time it is’ (Rom 13:11), because we have already entered into the moment for ‘us to wake from sleep’ (Rom 13:11).