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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Marks of Cain by Tom Knox

Marks of Cain by Tom Knox

Tom Knox is the pseudonym of British journalist Sean Thomas.

Englishman and journalist, Simon Quinn, looks into a series of brutal murders involving victims connected to the Basque regions of Spain and France. Tortured and garroted these murders get the attention of the police. Meanwhile American and attorney, David Martinez, is by his dying Grandfather's bedside. His Grandfather asks him to look into his family history, the history of the Basques in southern France and northern Spain. He sets out with a strange map. He meets the beautiful Amy in a bar where he is asking for Jose Gavrillo. For some unknown reason the men try to attack him and Amy speaks up for him. But the evil Miquel comes on the scene and knocks Amy down. David jumps on Miquel but ends up being knocked out too. For some reason, Amy (who is not from the region, is not Basque) lives here and is deeply attached to the Basque Independence movement. She was a former lover of Miguel. She knows the difficult Basque language, knows the villages and hidey holes and befriends David. She, her background and her quick attachment to David didn't make sense. When it got to the gratuitous violence, weird sex, and constant foul language I gave up on this book. Knox, or Thomas, was using this book as a vehicle for his male fantasies and not a very good vehicle. It's pretty badly written just hopping from one sex scene or violent scene after another with little connection. Poorly structured and offensive and I only read 1/3 of the way through. I give it a big thumbs down!

What is the mark of cain? It comes from the story in the Bible of Cain and Abel.

Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain, saying, "I have gotten a man with the help of the LORD." And again, she bore his brother Abel. Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, and Cain a worker of the ground. In the course of time Cain brought to the LORD an offering of the fruit of the ground, and Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat portions. And the LORD had regard for Abel and his offering, but for Cain and his offering he had no regard. So Cain was very angry, and his face fell. The LORD said to Cain, "Why are you angry, and why has your face fallen? If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is for you, but you must rule over it." Cain spoke to Abel his brother. And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel and killed him. Then the LORD said to Cain, "Where is Abel your brother?" He said, "I do not know; am I my brother's keeper?" And the LORD said, "What have you done? The voice of your brother's blood is crying to me from the ground. And now you are cursed from the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother's blood from your hand. When you work the ground, it shall no longer yield to you its strength. You shall be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth." Cain said to the LORD, "My punishment is greater than I can bear. Behold, you have driven me today away from the ground, and from your face I shall be hidden. I shall be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me." Then the LORD said to him, "Not so! If anyone kills Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold." And the LORD put a mark on Cain, lest any who found him should attack him. Then Cain went away from the presence of the LORD and settled in the land of Nod, east of Eden. (Genesis 4:1-16)

What was this mark? No one knows. But it was a mark of grace. This man was guilty of not obeying God and brought his idea of a sacrifice instead of God's idea of a sacrifice. But despite God's warning he didn't repent, he just stewed in anger until he murdered his brother, Abel. God caught him in his sin and still Cain didn't repent so God punished him. And, yet, God's grace placed a mark on him to protect him from being attacked by someone. So, although Cain was cursed in punishment, the actual mark was a sign of God's grace and protection. People have obsessed on what this mark was. But it's really not an important fact, which is probably why God didn't reveal what the mark was. What is important is that God loves us even while we are yet sinners. He sent Jesus, His Son, to die on our behalf, to save us from our sins. Once we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior, God places the Holy Spirit within us to teach and train our new spirit.

John 14:26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

Ephesians 1:13-14
In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.

This is the mark of being a Christian. The Holy Spirit is our "mark". It marks us as one of God's children and protects us from satan and eternal hell.

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