7 You will be accepted if you do what is right. But if you refuse to do what is right, then watch out! Sin is crouching at the door, eager to control you. But you must subdue it and be its master.”
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Despite the universal innate sinfulness of the human race since the fall of Adam and Eve, individuals are still confronted every day with specific situations in which they can choose to either do what is right or do what is wrong. Doing the right thing does not save them, but doing the wrong thing is to allow sin to extend its control over them. Thus, doing the right thing is to master or rule over sin (although it still does not cleanse them entirely of sin -- only faith in Christ's atonement can do that). God was telling Cain to learn from his experience, and to "do well" by showing the same understanding of the necessity of a blood atonement for sin that Abel had displayed by offering a sacrificial lamb to God. Had Cain displayed such understanding, he could have ruled over sin by humbly using Abel as a positive example, rather than pridefully directing his thoughts and actions toward "getting even" with Abel by killing him.
We must see in this passage of scripture the mercy of the God of a second chance. God knows full well the consequences awaiting Cain if he does not change his attitude of anger and resentment, and he even gives him a warning and an opportunity to bring his sacrifice a second time in the proper manner. Cain could plead ignorance of the proper manner (a blood sacrifice), because Abel knew, so should he. Cain, even right then, had the power of choice, otherwise God would not have given him the option of a choice. So in a very real sense, and to answer the question, the power to rule over sin was within Cain's grasp. He simply chose otherwise. We today often find ourselves in the same position as Cain.We too must master sin and choose life.
As hinted at above, it's just like God to give another opportunity to do right, "to rule over sin", and it's just like man to stubbornly refuse it. Cain and we could "rule over sin" by not holding grudges or harboring bitterness because this can be used by Satan to lead us into temptation and then sin. Paul meant this when he said, "neither give place to the devil" (Ephesians 4:27). Be careful; we can tempt ourselves and cause our own ruin if we're not.
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