When Cain, out of malice and jealousy, committed the first murder in history, he first lied to God, saying, “I do not know.” Then Cain asked God a question: “Am I my brother’s keeper?” This question has been misunderstood and misused by religious socialists for centuries.
These religious socialists believe that every man is his brother’s keeper and that anyone who questions their axioms is the moral equivalent of a murderer.
Cain, like anyone accused of a crime, put forth a defense that he believed God would accept. He naturally would not put forth a defense that God would reject.
God did not say that Cain was Abel’s keeper. God does not respond to the impertinent question at all.
Cain’s defense was totally wasted on God. God knew that Cain had not been minding his own business, nor had Cain allowed Abel to mind his own. Cain had murdered his brother. Cain was not his brother’s keeper; he had no obligation to supervise Abel. He did, however, have an obligation not to murder him. God accused Cain directly of violating that obligation not to murder, and cursed him.
Cain’s deceptive and clever defense has done enormous harm to everyone. Cain was a murderer and a liar, and his futile attempt to justify murder has caused millions to err.
I am NOT my brother’s keeper. But I DO have an obligation not to harm my brother.