Thursday, November 19, 2009

Long Live the Queen and in defense of Cain

The next biblical characters that I wanted to comment on, is the second set of people in the bible, Cain and Abel.

The general understanding of the biblical story is that Cain was a murderer that murdered his brother, because he was jealous of 
G-d's acceptance of his sacrifice. Those with more knowledge of the oral torah background know the story that he was also jealous of the fact that Abel was born with an extra twin sister, that Cain wanted as a wife, as opposed to Abel marrying his twin.

With more study, it appears that Cain has been getting a bum rap all these years. In Hebrew, Abel's name is Hevel, which means nothing or air or immaterial.  It was Cain that came up with the idea of sacrifice, Hevel just copied him. It was Cain that was the person of real interest. We were not there when the death happened, but the proof of the bible verses, is that the crime was manslaughter not murder. Murder is the premeditated unlawful killing of a human being. Manslaughter is the killing of a human being, which could actually be legal if it is a police officer or in a war.

We know that it was manslaughter and not murder, from the punishment that G-d gave him. He was forced to wander, simliarly  to later in history when a person accused of manslaughter goes to a city of safety. Since there were no one who was going to take revenge on Cain, he didn't need to stay in a city of safety. Nor was there one at the time. Finally, many generations later, one of his own relatives kills him. But interesting enough, while most people think that Cain's line dies out, Noah (of Noah's ark fame) takes as his wife a daughter (through many generations later) of Cain. Hence Cain's line lives on and his power as a person is preserved, and becomes 50% of the people of the world.

Love Yehuda



Long Live the Queen!