Rappers and Rabbis Episode 5: Why Did Cain Kill Abel?

Posted by Bible Raps on November 29, 2017
Topics: Rappers and Rabbis, Cain and Abel

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This podcast is a Pardes-Bible Raps co-production. Written and performed by Bible Raps.

The crew is joined by Mira Bee Shore and reckon with the most pregnant Ellipsis in the history of books. It says in Genesis chapter 4, after God favors Abel’s gift over Cain’s gift “So Cain spoke to Abel his brother…. It happened when they were in the field that Cain rose up against his bother and killed him.” Rabba Yaffa brings in a number of commentaries which frame the fight between Cain and Abel as different things that Humans deem worth killing for. Which begs the question: what would you kill for? Rabba Yaffa and Rabbi AdAm take the text further that the murder may be due to a misunderstanding between God and Cain. When God says to Cain “you have the capacity to rule over HIM” God is referring to Cain’s Yetzer whereas Cain may be thinking God is referring to Abel.


“Rappers & Rabbis” is hosted by Rapper Matt Bar, Rabba Yaffa Epstein, Rabbi AdAm Mayer and Rabbi Ethan Witkovsky. Join us every two weeks for a lively hip hop havruta-style Torah conversation with a rotating cast of Pardes alumni and holy MCs. Each episode is framed by a question with metaphysical ramifications, such as “Why did God create the snake?” Or “Can Rabba Yaffa Epstein rap?” See https://elmad.pardes.org/topic/rappers-and-rabbis/ to listen to more episodes in the series.

About Bible Raps

Bible Raps is a non-profit born from Matt Bar’s desire to engage his Hebrew School classes on a deeper and more contemporary level. Since its inception, Bible Raps has reached tens of thousands of young Jews with Torah-rich performances in schools, Hillels, conferences and camps across the US and abroad. Their teaching materials are being used in countless classrooms and teachers are currently being trained to be certified “Bible Raps educators.”

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