Genesis 4:7 – “If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted up? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it.”
Genesis 3:21-24 is where we read of Adam and Eve being driven out of the garden of Eden. Because of their sin, they are both cursed, and now the power of sin has been unleashed. As we read in the beginning of chapter 4, immediately after being driven out of the garden, Adam and Eve gave birth to both Cain and Abel. Verses 3 through 5 show us that Cain and Abel brought offerings to the Lord, but that God didn’t regard Cain’s offering with favor. Not much is said about why God didn’t regard his offering favorably, but we see that Cain became angry because of this. We then read what God said to Cain in verse 7.
When the story of Cain and Abel took place, the only sin that had been documented was the original sin that Adam and Eve committed in the garden. Though there was only one sin documented, God was still able to say that “sin is crouching at the door” and that “its desire is for you.” Sin wasn’t like a mustard seed that started small and gradually over time produced a tree that birds could nest in. Sin did start small, but its growth was immediate! Its destructive power immediately infiltrated the whole world. Ever since Adam and Eve’s original act of rebellion, sin is crouching at the door.
Fast forward to today, and sin is still crouching at your door and its desire is still for you. While at times it appears this world is getting worse and worse, there is a sense that the world cannot get any worse, because it is already as bad as it needs to be. Sin still has destructive power. Yet, it is clear that in various ways sin becomes more and more acceptable and more and more accessible, while it remains eternally destructive.
This week, the most popular pornographic magazine came out with a surprising announcement. Playboy magazine is no longer publishing images of nude women. Their sales have been down to the point where they concluded that a drastic change must be made. In 1975, they sold approximately 5.6 million magazines. Now, in 2015, sales are down to around 800,000. As much as we wish this were good news, the reason for their decision is incredibly disheartening and discouraging. Any form of pornography is one free click away, so why continue selling what people don’t need to pay for to obtain? That’s their reasoning.
Here are some discouraging statistics for you. According to Kassia Wosick, who is an assistant professor at New Mexico State University, pornography is a $97 billion dollar industry. 37% of the internet is made up of pornographic material. Hollywood puts out around 11,000 adult movies per year. Pornography is one free click away. Sin is crouching at your door. Its desire is for you, and it is fighting hard to become your master.
The cell phone you carry around everywhere you go is a doorway to defeat. Your computer that you use daily for work purposes is an endless opportunity to cave. God’s exhortation to Cain is the same as it is to you. Sin is crouching at your door. It is pursuing you. It is looking for ways to weaken you. Unless you understand its power, you will never have the ability to overcome its work. So are you paying attention?