Genesis Chapter Four: Cain and Abel

Genesis Chapter Four: A Modern Translation

1And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD.

1 The first thing Adam and Eve do after being banished from the garden is to have sex. Whether or not sex was occurring prior to this point is not known, but after a hard day of banishment and eternal punishment these two really deserved a little R & R. And from this act was produced a child known as Cain.

And when this happened Eve said “I have gotten a man from the LORD”. And Adam said “What!? Where did say you got him?!” And Eve said, “I meant that metaphorically”.

2And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.

2But despite the fact that childbirth was curse from God, Eve apparently found something worth doing in the process and she quickly gave birth to a second son called Abel. Later in life, Cain became a farmer just like his old man, while Abel, being quite the entrepreneur, takes up sheep ranching. Thus begins the first in a long number of conflicts between farmers and ranchers.

3And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD.

3After being a farmer for awhile Cain thought it might be a good idea to get the family back on the good side of the LORD, so he took the very best bits of his produce and offered them to the LORD.

It should be noted at this point that God has changed his name again. Instead of God or LORD God, he now likes to be called The LORD, much like that wrestler/actor is called The ROCK.

4And 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:

4And Abel, thinking this was a pretty good idea, did the same thing. And he brought the LORD several good cuts of lamb. And the LORD, who had a thing for lamb chops, was quite pleased by this. The LORD told Abel that it was the finest lamb he’d ever had and the LORD put in several orders for future deliveries.

5But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.

5But then the LORD looked at what Cain was offering and it was all the stuff he had cursed Adam with back in chapter Three. Spinach, cauliflower, carrots, and all the other yuck. And the LORD, who had no intention of eating that stuff, went back to cooking up his lamb on the celestial barbeque.

Cain, who had gotten his produce by doing exactly what he and his father had been told to do, was not terribly happy about all this. He had produced this stuff by the toiling in the hot sun for months and now the LORD was off having lamb steak with dear brother Abel.

6And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen?

6And the LORD said to Cain, “What’s with the unhappy face Cain? Why the grouchy?”

7If 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.

7″Looky here boy, I got a little advice for you. Always do your best and things will work out. If you only half ass it, kind of like you did with this crappy food, than evil is knocking at your door. And having evil around your house is no good. Or to put it another way, sucking is evil. Don’t suck.”

8And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.

8Afterwards Cain had a talk with Abel. Cain was pretty upset about how Abel had completely gone off the page and gone into ranching when the LORD had specifically told them there were supposed to be farmers. And Abel told Cain that well the LORD had liked his sheep best so why didn’t Cain stick that one in his rulebook. And Cain asked Abel what was wrong with that sheep over there, and when Abel turned to look, Cain bashed him with a rock. And thus was sibling rivalry invented.

9And the LORD said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother’s keeper?

9Sometime later, the LORD noticed his lamb delivery was running late and he went looking for Abel. Not finding him, he asked Cain “Hey you there, farmer, where’s your brother? He never delivered those chops!”

And Cain said “How should I know? I’m not his secretary!”.

10And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother’s blood crieth unto me from the ground.

10And the LORD said, “Cain, what have you been up to? There’s blood all over the ground and there’s a pair of feet sticking out from under that bush!”

11And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother’s blood from thy hand;

11 “What is it with this family? You steal, you lie, and now you’re killing each other! If there were three more of you, you’d be having wars! I swear to me, you people are driving me crazy!”

“But guess what time it is now, you broccoli-chewing, bloody-handed little psychopath? Yep, you guessed it! It’s curse time! And as you are such a good little farmer, your curse shall involve the earth! You get it? That’s irony! I just invented irony!”

12When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength; a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth.

12 “You like farming? Well good luck with that! Weeds and rocks will be all you ever grow from here on. You’re going to have to roam the earth looking for whatever sustenance you can find. You like thistles? I hope so; you’re going to be chewing a lot of them!”

13And Cain said unto the LORD, My punishment is greater than I can bear.

13And Cain said to the LORD, “Please! I only did what you told me to! Well not the murdering so much as the farming. I can’t take this!”

14Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the earth; and from thy face shall I be hid; and I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth; and it shall come to pass, that every one that findeth me shall slay me.

14 “Do you know what people will do to me once the found I’m the first murderer? They’ll kill me! Or they’ll put me in prison! I’m too pretty for prison, LORD! You made me too pretty!”

15And the LORD said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And the LORD set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him.

15And the LORD said to Cain, “That’s a strange argument, but as I am trying to put a stop to all the murdering going on around here, I’m going to help you out. Let it be known than anyone who kills you, or puts you in prison I guess, shall have done to them seven times the hardship they put on you.” And to make sure that anyone meeting Cain on the street would now they shouldn’t mess with him, the LORD wrote a message on Cain’s forehead that read roughly as follows, “HI! I’m Cain! I murdered my brother because I’m an psychopathic idiot who cared more about farming more than my own family. Feel free to insult me and refuse me shelter, but if you injure me, the LORD shall curse you with seven times the harm you inflict upon me. Have a nice day!”

16And Cain went out from the presence of the LORD, and dwelt in the land of Nod , on the east of Eden .

16And Cain left Eden , and went to dwell in the land of Nod , which was east of Eden . Nod was an infertile place where few things grew except a handful of fruit trees and lots of thistles.

17And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Enoch: and he builded a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch.

17 And in Nod Cain had sex with his wife and had a son of his own called Enoch. And, determined to be a better father than Adam or the LORD, Cain spoiled that kid rotten, giving him constant praise for all his achievements. He even built the world’s first city and named it after his son.

Some might ask where Cain got his wife, considering that the only woman in existence was Eve. The obvious answer to this question was that the LORD arranged things so that for several generations, the family of Cain produced only sons and that each of those sons was made a wife from one of his ribs. Once a stable breeding population was reached, the LORD stopped this practice and women started to be born to the children of Cain.

18And unto Enoch was born Irad: and Irad begat Mehujael: and Mehujael begat Methusael: and Methusael begat Lamech.

18 And Enoch had a son named Irad. It should be noted that Enoch didn’t name any cities after this kid, possibly indicating he resented the constant approval from his own father and desiring more structure in his life he was stricter with his own child.

And Irad had a son named Mehujael and he had son named Methusael. None of these fellows did anything interesting enough to even get a Wikipedia page, so you really don’t need to worry about them. Unless you really want to excel at obscure biblical trivia, or you want to write slashfiction about Cain being the first vampire, though I don’t recommend it because it’s been done to death.

And then we come to Methusaels’ son Lamech…

19And Lamech took unto him two wives: the name of the one was Adah, and the name of the other Zillah.

19And it was Lamech who came up with the idea of marrying more than one woman at a time, thus inventing polygamy. So significant was this event that the names of women were recorded for the first time since Eve. They were one Adah and one Zillah, thus indicating that Lamech had an interesting sense of humor, as he apparently wanted to marry all the women “from A to Z”.

20And Adah bare Jabal: he was the father of such as dwell in tents, and of such as have cattle.

20And Adah gave birth to a son Jabal. Jabal and his family lived and tents and kept cattle and thus he is famous for being the first cowboy. Jabal is notable for being the first Cain to take up Abel’s old profession of ranching and one gets the idea it was largely because he was tired of the family tradition of eating thistles.

21And his brother’s name was Jubal: he was the father of all such as handle the harp and organ.

21And Jabal’s brother was Jubal, (their parents didn’t think to hard about names), and Jubal rejected the open range ways of his brother as his constitution was more delicate. He and his took up the harp and the organ and became the first musicians.

22And Zillah, she also bare Tubalcain, an instructer of every artificer in brass and iron: and the sister of Tubalcain was Naamah.

22Meanwhile Zillah, (the Z), bore Lamech a son called Tubalcain, and this was much regarded as being a more interesting name than Jabal or Jubal. He became the first worker of brass and iron and thus was the first Mechanic.

And Zillah bore a daughter named Naamah, who is interesting because she is the first woman being mentioned as having been born to the Cain family, possibly indicating she is the first woman to have actually been born following the theory presented back in verse 17 of this chapter.

23And Lamech said unto his wives, Adah and Zillah, Hear my voice; ye wives of Lamech, hearken unto my speech: for I have slain a man to my wounding, and a young man to my hurt.

23Some time after all these very accomplished children were born, Lamech came to his wives one dark and stormy night and woke them up from a sound sleep. His hands were bloody and there was a wild look in his eyes as he told them a story of grim murder and bloody deeds done in the dark.

“Listen to me!” he said in a frantic voice, “I just killed a guy! I hit him with a rock! And I’m pretty upset about it!”

24If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, truly Lamech seventy and sevenfold.

24″Now look,” Lamech told his wives, “there’s only one way I’m getting out of this without getting bashed in the head with a rock, so I want both of you to do something for me; I want you both to go tell everyone that the LORD has cursed me, just like with Cain. But even more so! Tell them that the LORD will curse anyone who does Lamech harm so that they will be hurt SEVENTY times as bad as they hurt Lamech.”

Whether this plan worked or not is unknown, but what we do know is we don’t hear about Lamech again. And since his life rested in the hands of his wives, we could suppose his disappearance from the record indicates how Adah and Zillah felt about the whole polygamy thing and the “from A to Z” joke.

25And Adam knew his wife again; and she bare a son, and called his name Seth: For God, said she, hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew.

25Meanwhile, back in Eden , Adam, who apparently had put off having children for awhile after the whole Cain-Abel thing, finally had a third child called Seth. And Eve said “God had provided me a replacement son for Abel who was slain by Cain. Not that I’m bitter about having one son killed and the other sent off to Nod to eat thistles. I’m just glad I’ve gotten another son. I just hope someone doesn’t tell anyone else they suck compared to Seth and they go into a jealous rage and kill him. We certainly wouldn’t want that to happen… again!”

26And to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enos: then began men to call upon the name of the LORD.

26And Seth, who was the normal one, apparently married one of his sisters, (Adam and Eve had very large family), and she bore him a son by the name of Enos.

On an unrelated note this is about the time people actually started worshiping the LORD as opposed to trying to avoid him when he was in a bad mood.