By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous…
From what the apostle says of Abel in our text, we may consider him as the model speaker. It may seem strange to take this view of him when we do not know a single word that he ever spoke. "Actions speak louder than words."
I. THE MATTER OF ABEL'S SPEAKING, or what he spoke about. When a person is. going to make a speech, it is very important for him to choose a good subject. Abel did this. The thing to which the apostle here refers, as that by which Abel speaks to us, is the sacrifice which he offered. Abel was a model speaker because, by what he did, he spoke about Christ and His death. And this is the most important thing that any one can ever speak about.
1. This is an important subject to speak about, because we cannot be good till we know about Jesus and His death.
2. We cannot be happy till we know about Christ and His death.
3. We cannot be safe till we know about Jesus and His death.
II. Abel was a model speaker also because of the MANNER of his speaking. He spoke by his life, or actions; and there are three ways in which this made him a model speaker.
1. In the first place, it made him a plain speaker. Everybody who has heard what the Apostle Paul says about Abel's sacrifice, understands what it meant. When he spoke by that action, Abel was speaking plainly.
2. This made him a loud speaker. He spoke so loudly by that act, that all round the world, wherever the Bible has gone, the voice of what he did has been heard. And if we wish to speak so loudly, that we may be heard for a long time and to a great distance, we must speak by our actions, by doing what God tells us to do.
3. Abel was a model speaker, because the action by which he spoke made him an effectual speaker. The action of Abel in offering his sacrifice spoke very effectually to the Apostle Paul. And nothing that Abel could have said by words about the sacrifice of Christ would have had so much effect in making people feel the importance of that sacrifice as his quiet action in standing by his altar and presenting on it the sacrifice which God had commanded to be offered.
(R. Newton, . D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.
WEB: By faith, Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he had testimony given to him that he was righteous, God testifying with respect to his gifts; and through it he, being dead, still speaks.