So who killed 1/4 of the earth’s population —
Samson, Cain or King Herod?
Readers, do you know who it was?!! Was it any of them, or even anyone at all?
I love this question … because I’d never thought of it this way! But yes, someone did kill a quarter of the world’s population.
By the time we get to Genesis 4, Scriptures talks about four people on earth. There are Adam and Eve, of course. And there are their two children, Cain and Abel. Thus when Cain kills Abel – out of jealousy – this means that according to the biblical narrative, Cain killed one quarter of the world’s population. Wow!
As I said, I never thought of it that way! But rather than stick with a one word answer — Cain — your question reveals a much deeper question: How destructive are the sinful thoughts and motives of you and me?
The answer: Human sin keeps killing at least a quarter of the world’s population.
Really?! Count this up on your fingers. Imagine that each of your first seven fingers represents one of the seven billion people on earth. Now, how many fingers do all the murders and all our current wars bring down? Hmmm. Not even one finger yet, right? So how is human sin pulling down at least a quarter of those seven fingers to murder and death?
- First, on an earthly level, what percentage of humans will die? The answer, of course, is 100%. Why? Genesis 3 tells us that death is and will be a history-long consequence of sin. It’s the sin of the past that caused death in the past. And it’s our continued rebellion that leads to continuing death. In a frightening way, then, your sin and mine are responsible for about sixty million deaths a year! Yours! Mine! Now, we’d generally like to point to the Cains of the world and blame them, but there’s a bit of Cain in all of us. We’re jealous and envious. We get angry and are suspicious of those we don’t know well. We lie and cheat and steal. Sometimes our sin is as big as a shot gun blast. Other times it’s a small as little cuts that gradually steal a person’s security and worth. Prejudice, hatred, arrogance, apathy, ingratitude. We all have our own cocktail of sins, and bit by bit it destroys life.
- On a spiritual level, there’s another kind of death. It’s also claiming more than a quarter of earth’s population. In John 3:16, Jesus said, “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whosoever believes in Him may not perish, but have eternal life.” Does more than a quarter not believe? What is their fate, then, according to John 3:16? Perishing. There have been blatant deceivers who have led hundreds and thousands and even hundreds of millions astray with false religions. And that’s killing more than a quarter of the population. Our call as believers is to throw more lifelines by sharing more fully our faith.
In Christ’s Love,
a guy who loves
a question that