29 And they shall come from the east, and from the west, and from the north, and from the south, and shall sit down in the kingdom of God. 30 And, behold, there are last which shall be first, and there are first which shall be last. Luke 13:29-30 (KJV)
The First Adam was, in the form and manner of his creation, a son of God. “Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.” Luke 3:38 (KJV) Whether or not Adam fell into the spiritual line of sons and daughters is not directly addressed in Holy Scripture; but we do know that all who trust in the Promise made to Abraham, and fulfilled in our Lord Jesus Christ, are all sons and daughters according to faith and not physical descent. “But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.” None but Christ is the Son of God according to natural descent, and we by the means of adoption. It has ever been so from the day of Abraham until today. Not all of the Hebrew bloodline were sons, but those who believed in the promised Messiah. The same is true today when we look back in saving grace to the accomplished promise in Christ. We will discuss more about the First son, Adam, nearer the end of today’s devotion. Bear in mind that Christ came to the Jew first, and then to the Gentile, but all to the same purpose and effect. Curiously, God does not mention Cain as a son of Adam in the above verse.
The first man born to woman upon the earth was Cain. The Scriptures do not specify that Cain, and his brother Abel, were twins; nor does it specify the time period intervening between their births. But we know that Cain was the firstborn of Eve. “And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD. And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.” Cain & Abel Genesis 4:1-2 (KJV)
It is doubtless that Adam shared the events that caused his expulsion from the Garden, and how God had taken the life of an animal (likely a lamb) in order to cover the nakedness of both Adam and Eve. This was symbolic of a covering for sin. It was done by means of a blood sacrifice. Abel learned, just as surely as did Cain, that a blood sacrifice was required in any offering before God. God required that observance, not because the blood of animals would finally suffice as a covering for sin, but as an outward and visible sign of that greater sacrifice which would be required in the fulness of time (the sacrifice of God’s only Begotten Son).
Cain was obviously a bad seed among those known of man. He had a stiff neck, and a wicked and careless will. It is true of all men who are not born of the Spirit of God. Man’s will is forever prone to the most extravagant of evil until acted upon by the drawing grace and love of a Providential Father. The “way of Cain” is the way of the world. “Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core. These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots; Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness for ever.” Jude 1:11-13 May I suggest that the greater number of pulpits in America today are filled by such men!
At the proper time, Cain brought forth His offering to the Lord , and Abel, his – “And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD. And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering: But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell. And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? 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.”
Cain knew that the Lord required a blood sacrifice, but Cain was a tiller of the ground (which God had cursed in Eden). He had no living sacrifice. He probably was too proud to ask for such from his younger brother, so he decided to do as he pleased and offer a sacrifice of the produce of his crops. But Abel, being the first prophet, brought a worthy sacrifice of a lamb. Cain made gave a manmade sacrifice; and Abel gave a living sacrifice of the creation of God’s own impartation of life! So, Cain, the first son, was of no use to the Almighty, but Abel was accepted – and for his faithfulness, Abel died at his brother’s hand. The first son fell from any grace of which he was given; and the second son, Abel, excelled in righteousness. “Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city: That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.” Matt 23:34-35 The martyred prophets from A to Z.
Now we come to a most enlightening set of brothers – Ishmael and Isaac. God had promised Abraham to increase his progeny in number to the sands of the sea. In fact, at the time, God changed the name of Abram (high father) to Abraham (father of many nations). As Sarah and Abraham grew older, Sarah began to doubt that God could fulfill His promise. She was without child and barren. So she hit upon an idea that would have made Cain proud – she would give her Egyptian servant girl, Hagar, to Abraham by whom Abraham could have a son. The mind of man is never Holy and pure. It attempts to undermine that perfect will of the Lord. Hagar did have a son, but it was not the promised seed of which God had promised. He was the father of the Arab nations. His nature has not changed from that day to this. God told Hagar, “And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Behold, thou art with child, and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael; because the LORD hath heard thy affliction. And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren. Genesis 16:11-12 (KJV) Notice the particulars of God’s Word to Hagar:
- He will be called Ishmael
- He will be a wild man (just like those of the terrorists of Islam)
- His hand will be against every man (There has never been a possible peace with the Arabs. If they are not fighting a foreign enemy, they will be fighting each other.
- He shall dwell in the presence of ALL his brethren. Unlike the German, English, Chinese, and African peoples who are disbursed in great numbers around the world, the Arabs have clung to their desert habitats.
The Lord appeared to Abraham and Sarah on the Plains of Mamre and renewed the promise of an offspring to Sarah. “And he said, I will certainly return unto thee according to the time of life; and, lo, Sarah thy wife shall have a son. And Sarah heard it in the tent door, which was behind him. Now Abraham and Sarah were old and well stricken in age; and it ceased to be with Sarah after the manner of women. Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, After I am waxed old shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also? And the LORD said unto Abraham, Wherefore did Sarah laugh, saying, Shall I of a surety bear a child, which am old?
Is any thing too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son. Then Sarah denied, saying, I laughed not; for she was afraid. And he said, Nay; but thou didst laugh.” Genesis 18:10-15 (KJV)
Please consider deeply the gravity of this promise made to Abraham. Abraham would be 100 years old at the birth of Isaac. Sarah would be 91 – well past the time of child bearing. If a child would be born, it would, of necessity, be of miraculous and divine intervention – and it WAS! Isaac was the Child of Promise from the beginning, but Sarah and Abraham attempted to circumvent the promise of God and have a child outside the banns of matrimony. Isaac would be the only LEGITIMATE son of Abraham. Isaac was born by means of a miracle, just as the son of God would be borne by a miracle of the Holy Ghost. Isaac is a near exact Type of Christ. Abraham would be told to sacrifice his ONLY son whom he loved on Mount Moriah – the same place of our Lord’s crucifixion. He would carry the wood for his sacrifice just as the Lord would carry that rough-hewn wooden cross to the same place.
In a worldly sense, Isaac was the second son of Abraham, but in the Mind of God (and according to the promise of God) Isaac was the ONLY son of Abraham. This is important to acknowledge as we shall see shortly.
I could go on and on about second sons versus first, such as Esau and Jacob, first wives and seconds such as Leah and Rachel; but suffice it to say that the second son has a spiritual significance in Holy Writ.
In a worldly view, our Lord, too, was a second Son of God. Adam was a son of God, and our Lord was the Son of God. How different? “And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven.
As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly.” The first son of God, Adam, was earthly as was Cain, Ishmael, and Esau. But the true Son of God was the only BEGOTTEN SON OF GOD from eternity past. Today, many churches are trying to take that title out of Scripture, but it makes ALL the difference in our identity. Though Holy Scriptures tell us that we are also sons and daughters who are true children of Abraham (those who believed the same promise made unto Abraham), our Lord is a Son in a far different sense. He is the true Son of the same substance and likeness to the Father. On the other hand, we are sons and daughters by way of ADOPTION! We are not sinless as is He. We are not of the same substance with the Father as is He. It is by His grace alone that we are adopted into the family of God.
In conclusion, I will say that there are only two families upon the earth – the Family of God, and the family of the Prince of the Air (Satan). There is no transition form here. We are all either one or the other.
There is a growing religion today that seeks to place all adherents under bonds and chains. But there is only one religion which grants perfect freedom and liberty. 22 For it is written, that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a freewoman. 23 But he who was of the bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the freewoman was by promise. 24 Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar (Hagar). 25 For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children. 26 But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all. 27 For it is written, Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not: for the desolate hath many more children than she which hath an husband. 28 Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise. 29 But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now. 30 Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman. 31 So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman, but of the free. Galatians 4:22-31
Any religious movement that attempts to coerce by force the soul of man into following is that of Hagar. (Ishmael and Mt. Zion) But the Perfect Law of Liberty is found only in Christ, the fulfillment of the promise made to Abraham. “For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith. For if they which are of the law be heirs, faith is made void, and the promise made of none effect: Because the law worketh wrath: for where no law is, there is no transgression. Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all,” Romans 4:13-16 (KJV)
Even today, the descendants of Hagar attempt to place her children in bondage through the wickedness of Islam or some other dark religion. But, the Book of the Laws (Old Testament) ends, appropriately, with the word “CURSE,” for the perfect keeping of the Law to us is a curse. But our Lord removed the curse of the Law and has written that Law of God in the soft sinews of our heart-chambers. Love does indeed cover all sin, and it is by the means of love that we keep the Law of God. Even so, we have no righteousness whatsoever, we must lean upon the imputed righteousness of our sinless Redeemer, Jesus Christ.
I will not expound upon these last two texts for they are self-explanatory (and I am running out of digital paper). But I leave it to the wise understanding of the reader to read these verses with understanding and prayerful reliance upon the Holy spirit to Light the Way.
“EVEN SO IT IS NOW.”