The Lord answers Cain’s rhetorical question with a powerful call to account for his actions, his attitude, and his neglect of the mandate to “keep” his brother. If we were to ask the Lord the same question of our brothers and sisters, His answer would call us to account just as emphatically. We do have a mandate to care for, to nurture, and to “keep” those around us.
First, we are responsible for our natural families. How often we ignore the spiritual, emotional, and physical care of those to whom we are related.
Second, we are responsible for our spiritual families. We must regularly minister to our brothers, sisters, fathers, and mothers in the faith. Our attitudes toward them must reflect the care fitting the mandate our Lord gave us to “love one another.”
Third, in the parable of the Good Samaritan, Jesus called us to nurture those we are not naturally disposed to like. What of those who rub us the wrong way? “Am I his keeper, Lord? Surely not, Father, you know how difficult he is; surely not him, Lord….”
And our Lord answers…