2 thoughts on “Cain and Abel

  1. Logan – isn’t part of the problem that we live in a society which largely works, at least mostly for the middle classes.

    So in one sense there is an institutional form of violence which we accept because it benefits us. For example, we call on the police to protect us and society. So in some sense we rely more on the structures of our society than on God.

    This means that we are more inclined to portray our society as acting out the will of God, and hence we are able to accept violence beyond civil protection as being part of our notion of being on God’s side.

    Of course this is a broken notion as there are many within and outwith our society who do not gain the benefits we take for granted.

    The problem for the relatively wealthy is that I’m not sure the gospels allow us to believe in man made structures but allegiance to the kingdom of heaven.

    I’m also struggling to see how the OT fits within this understanding..

  2. joe; great insight! i agree with what you said even as i am benefiting from such a society. a good book that focuses on violence but also covers the OT’s view toward civilization as they knew it (and its only gotten worse, if you ask me) is call “God and Violence” by patricia mcdonald. when you think about implications in the text, it gets really interesting. for example, the very first city was built by Cain (not Seth, the ‘good’ son after Abel was murdered), and also the fact that Abram was called OUT of the city and much of the Hebraic narratives are of wandering and exodus. its really quite convicting when one thinks about it. another good article (harder to find) goes over nomadism and what it has to teach the church (after all, the God of the Exodus was pastoralist). Maybe google Nomadic Theology to find it…

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