Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Devotion on Genesis 4 - The Value of the Non-Christian

In the latter part of Genesis 4, we are given a snapshot of Cain's descendants. Though we cannot know for sure, because they are Cain's descendants, we are probably meant to assume that this family line does not acknowledge God in the same way that his younger brother Seth's will.

Notice, though, that not everything the Scripture says about Cain's line is negative. In verses 19-22, it enumerates some of the many accomplishments and societal advancements that Cain's line contributed to the world. From nomadic shepherding to music making to metallurgy, Cain's descendants certainly made some important discoveries.

And yet, Seth's line would probably still regard their Cainite relatively negatively because of Cain's family's godlessness.

How do you feel about your relatives who are non-Christians?

It's often difficult (and rightly so) for a Christian to respect the life choices or perspectives of a non-Christian. We simply don't see things the same way and we want more than anything for that family member to understand the truth that we do.

At the same time, we know that we cannot keep "hounding" our non-believing family members to accept Christ when they're not ready to do so or else we will only resent our religion and push them further away from it.

So what do we do?

We keep praying for them definitely, and sensitively bring up the topic of God when it seems the time might be right, but the hard truth is that some people will never acknowledge God.

So, as Christians, rather than allowing our religious views to separate us from our non-Christian family members, we should embrace them all the more. We will not have them for eternity like we will have our fellow Christian brothers and sisters. Our time with them might be short. Enjoy it while you can, and acknowledge and focus on the good that they do, just as Genesis 4 highlights the good of Cain's line.

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