Two brothers come before God. One is named Qayin (better known in English as “Cain”), and his name means “brought forth”, “created” or “acquired.” The other brother is Hevel (English “Abel”), whose name means “vapor” or “mist”. The symbolism of the names I’ll leave for you to muse over.
Qayin brings some of the fruit of the soil as an offering to God. It wasn’t commanded or required, he just did it.
Hevel brings his best: fat portions from the firstborn of his flock. God is pleased with Hevel. Qayin is angry and ignores God’s warning to do what is right and stop sin from gaining the upper hand over him.
In worshipping or praying to God it is easy to become envious of the favor we see given to others. (more…)