[quote="pollynova, post:1, topic:323041"]
So in Genesis, it talks about how Abel offered God the first of his sheep, and Cain offered God some of his crops. If I'm understanding it right, God was pleased with the sheep, but not with Cain's offering.
Why didn't God like Cain's offering of his crops? Were they bad crops? I know later in the old testament it talks about cereal offerings, so why didn't Cain's offering make God happy? Was it just that He liked Abel's offering better?
Then God says, "Why are you so resentful and crestfallen? If you do well, you can hold up your head; but if not, sin is a demon lurking at the door: his urge is toward you, yet you can be his master."
What exactly is God trying to say here? Is He telling Cain to try again and make a better offering? I mean, I'd be pretty crestfallen if God rejected my offer to Him. :confused:
As others have said, God is addressing the moral disposition of the one making the sacrifice. "Then the Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.”" - Gen 4 6-7
Leviticus instructs Priests similarly " No descendant of Aaron the priest who has any defect is to come near to present the food offerings to the Lord. He has a defect; he must not come near to offer the food of his God. He may eat the most holy food of his God, as well as the holy food; yet because of his defect, he must not go near the curtain or approach the altar, and so desecrate my sanctuary. I am the Lord, who makes them holy.’” Lev 21 21-23
Paul also stresses the need for inner cleanliness in offering the Eucharist "Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord. Let a man examine himself, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup" (1 Cor. 11:27–28).
The Code of Canon Law that governs us today also indicates *"A person who is conscious of a grave sin is not to . . . receive the body of the Lord without prior sacramental confession unless a grave reason is present and there is no opportunity of confessing; in this case the person is to be mindful of the obligation to make an act of perfect contrition, including the intention of confessing as soon as possible" *(CIC 916).
Cain brought a curse upon himself and his descendents by offering sacrifice unworthily.