What Drives People to Murder? Calvin on the Murder of Abel

Calvin remarks of Abel’s murder by Cain-

This single deed of guilt clearly shows whither Satan will hurry men, when they harden their mind in wickedness, so that in the end, their obstinacy is worthy of the utmost extremes of punishment.

What was this cause of Abel’s wicked mindedness?  He was ‘a savage beast towards God’.  And since he couldn’t attack God, he turned to the next best thing- his brother.  Those who hate God naturally hate their brothers.  With such evil minds it is to be expected that they slay the object of their hatred – God – in the very brother they pretend to love.

Briefly then, for Calvin, murderers are trying to kill God.