|New International Version (©2011)|
If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it."
New Living Translation (©2007)
You will be accepted if you do what is right. But if you refuse to do what is right, then watch out! Sin is crouching at the door, eager to control you. But you must subdue it and be its master."
English Standard Version (©2001)
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 for you, but you must rule over it.”
New American Standard Bible (©1995)
"If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted up? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it."
King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.
Holman Christian Standard Bible (©2009)
If you do what is right, won't you be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is for you, but you must rule over it."
International Standard Version (©2012)
If you do what is appropriate, you'll be accepted, won't you? But if you don't do what is appropriate, sin is crouching near your doorway, turning toward you. Now as for you, will you take dominion over it?"
NET Bible (©2006)
Is it not true that if you do what is right, you will be fine? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at the door. It desires to dominate you, but you must subdue it."
GOD'S WORD® Translation (©1995)
If you do well, won't you be accepted? But if you don't do well, sin is lying outside your door ready to attack. It wants to control you, but you must master it."
King James 2000 Bible (©2003)
If you do well, shall you not be accepted? and if you do not well, sin lies at the door. And you shall be its desire, and you must rule over it.
American King James Version
If you do well, shall you not be accepted? and if you do not well, sin lies at the door. And to you shall be his desire, and you shall rule over him.
American Standard Version
If thou doest well, shall it not be lifted up? and if thou doest not well, sin coucheth at the door: and unto thee shall be its desire, but do thou rule over it.
If thou do well, shalt thou not receive? but if ill, shall not sin forthwith be present at the door? but the lust thereof shall be under thee, and thou shalt have dominion over it.
Darby Bible Translation
If thou doest well, will not thy countenance look up with confidence? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door; and unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.
English Revised Version
If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin coucheth at the door: and unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.
Webster's Bible Translation
If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And to thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.
World English Bible
If you do well, will it not be lifted up? If you don't do well, sin crouches at the door. Its desire is for you, but you are to rule over it."
Young's Literal Translation
Is there not, if thou dost well, acceptance? and if thou dost not well, at the opening a sin-offering is crouching, and unto thee its desire, and thou rulest over it.'
|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
4:1-7 When Cain was born, Eve said, I have gotten a man from the Lord. Perhaps she thought that this was the promised seed. If so, she was wofully disappointed. Abel signifies vanity: when she thought she had the promised seed in Cain, whose name signifies possession, she was so taken up with him that another son was as vanity to her. Observe, each son had a calling. It is the will of God for every one to have something to do in this world. Parents ought to bring up their children to work. Give them a Bible and a calling, said good Mr. Dod, and God be with them. We may believe that God commanded Adam, after the fall, to shed the blood of innocent animals, and after their death to burn part or the whole of their bodies by fire. Thus that punishment which sinners deserve, even the death of the body, and the wrath of God, of which fire is a well-known emblem, and also the sufferings of Christ, were prefigured. Observe that the religious worship of God is no new invention. It was from the beginning; it is the good old way, Jer 6:16. The offerings of Cain and Abel were different. Cain showed a proud, unbelieving heart. Therefore he and his offering were rejected. Abel came as a sinner, and according to God's appointment, by his sacrifice expressing humility, sincerity, and believing obedience. Thus, seeking the benefit of the new covenant of mercy, through the promised Seed, his sacrifice had a token that God accepted it. Abel offered in faith, and Cain did not, Heb 11:4. In all ages there have been two sorts of worshippers, such as Cain and Abel; namely, proud, hardened despisers of the gospel method of salvation, who attempt to please God in ways of their own devising; and humble believers, who draw near to him in the way he has revealed. Cain indulged malignant anger against Abel. He harboured an evil spirit of discontent and rebellion against God. God notices all our sinful passions and discontents. There is not an angry, envious, or fretful look, that escapes his observing eye. The Lord reasoned with this rebellious man; if he came in the right way, he should be accepted. Some understand this as an intimation of mercy. If thou doest not well, sin, that is, the sin-offering, lies at the door, and thou mayest take the benefit of it. The same word signifies sin, and a sacrifice for sin. Though thou hast not done well, yet do not despair; the remedy is at hand. Christ, the great sin-offering, is said to stand at the door, Re 3:20. And those well deserve to perish in their sins, that will not go to the door to ask for the benefit of this sin-offering. God's acceptance of Abel's offering did not change the birthright, and make it his; why then should Cain be so angry? Sinful heats and disquiets vanish before a strict and fair inquiry into the cause.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted?.... That is, either if thou doest thy works well in general, doest good works in a right way and manner, according to life will of God, and directed to his glory, from right principles, and with right views: so all the Targums,"if thou doest thy works well;''for it is not merely doing a good work, but doing the good work well, which is acceptable to God; hence that saying,"that not nouns but adverbs make good works:''or particularly it may respect sacrifice; if thou doest thine offering well, or rightly offereth, as the Septuagint; or offers not only what is materially good and proper to be offered, but in a right way, in obedience to the divine will, from love to God, and with true devotion to him, in the faith of the promised seed, and with a view to his sacrifice for atonement and acceptance; then thine offering would be well pleasing and acceptable. Some render the latter part of the clause, which is but one word in the original text, "there will be a lifting up" (k); either of the countenance of the offerer, and so, if Cain had done well, his countenance would not have fallen, but have been lifted up, and cheerful as before; or of sin, which is the pardon of it, and is often expressed by taking and lifting it up, and bearing it away, and so of easing a man of it as of a burden; and in this sense all the Targums take it; which paraphrase it,"it or thy sin shall be forgiven thee:"
and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door; if thou dost not do good works, nor offer an offering as it should be offered, sin lies at the door of conscience; and as soon as that is awakened and opened, it will enter in and make sad work there, as it afterwards did, Genesis 4:13 or it is open and manifest, and will be taken cognizance of, and punishment be inflicted for it; or else the punishment of sin itself is meant, which lies at the door, is at hand, and will soon be executed; and so all the Targums paraphrase it."thy sin is reserved to the day of judgment,''or lies at the door of the grave, reserved to that day, as Jarchi. Some render the word a sin offering, as it sometimes signifies; and then the sense is, that though he had sinned, and had done amiss in the offering he had offered, nevertheless there was a propitiatory sacrifice for sin provided, which was at hand, and would soon be offered; so that he had no need to be dejected, or his countenance to fall; for if he looked to that sacrifice by faith, he would find pardon and acceptance; but the former sense is best:
and unto thee shall be his desire; or "its desire", as some understand it of sin lying at the door, whose desire was to get in and entice and persuade him to that which was evil, and prevail and rule over him. The Targum of Jonathan, and that of Jerusalem, paraphrase it of sin, but to another sense,"sin shall lie at the door of thine heart, but into thine hand I have delivered the power of the evil concupiscence; and to thee shall be its desire, and thou shalt rule over it, whether to be righteous, or to sin:''but rather it refers to Abel; and the meaning is, that notwithstanding his offering was accepted of God, and not his brother Cain's, this would not alienate his affections from him, nor cause him to refuse subjection to him; but he should still love him as his brother, and be subject to him as his eider brother, and not seek to get from him the birthright, or think that that belonged to him, being forfeited by his brother's sin; and therefore Cain had no reason to be angry with his brother, or envious at him, since this would make no manner of alteration in their civil affairs:
and thou shall rule over him, as thou hast done, being the firstborn.
(k) "elevare", Montanus; "erit sublevatio", Fagius, "elatio", Drusius, "elevatio erit", some in Vatablus, Mercerus; so Aben Exra; "remissio", Junius & Tremellius, Schmidt; "venia erit", Pagninus; so Ainsworth.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
7. If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted?—A better rendering is, "Shalt thou not have the excellency"? which is the true sense of the words referring to the high privileges and authority belonging to the first-born in patriarchal times.
sin lieth at the door—sin, that is, a sin offering—a common meaning of the word in Scripture (as in Ho 4:8; 2Co 5:21; Heb 9:28). The purport of the divine rebuke to Cain was this, "Why art thou angry, as if unjustly treated? If thou doest well (that is, wert innocent and sinless) a thank offering would have been accepted as a token of thy dependence as a creature. But as thou doest not well (that is, art a sinner), a sin offering is necessary, by bringing which thou wouldest have met with acceptance and retained the honors of thy birthright." This language implies that previous instructions had been given as to the mode of worship; Abel offered through faith (Heb 11:4).
unto thee shall be his desire—The high distinction conferred by priority of birth is described (Ge 27:29); and it was Cain's conviction, that this honor had been withdrawn from him, by the rejection of his sacrifice, and conferred on his younger brother—hence the secret flame of jealousy, which kindled into a settled hatred and fell revenge.
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