Book of Genesis Chapter 19 Commentary by Pastor
Audio Bible Study - Genesis 19:1-5
Verse 1. "Now the two angels came to Sodom in the evening as Lot was sitting in
the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he rose to meet them and bowed down with
his face to the ground."
In Genesis 18:2 and its context, we saw "three men" who
suddenly "appeared" to Abraham. Abraham served them as honored guests, and
reading on in the chapter, we find that one of them was the Lord (18:3).
The Lord reaffirmed His promise to Abraham that he would have a son through
Sarah (Verse 10), continuing to speak with Abraham even after "the men turned
away from there and went toward Sodom" in the south. Those who turned away
were the "two angels" of this verse in Genesis 19.
You can notice from these verses that Lot's response to "the
two angels" is quite similar to Abraham's treatment of them in the
preceding chapter. "He rose to meet them and bowed
down with his face to the ground." Peter, in later centuries, would
refer to "righteous Lot," calling him "that
righteous man," in 2 Peter 2:7-8 & context. Lot made a lot of
mistakes and he was about to pay dearly for them, but he did believe in and
Lord, and he will be with the Lord in eternity because of his faith, small
though it may seem to be to those who read about him.
Verse 2. "And he said, 'Now behold, my lords, please turn aside into your
servant's house, and spend the night, and wash your feet; then you may rise
early and go on your way.' They said however, 'No, but we shall spend the night
in the square.'"
The events of these verses are effectively a test of Lot's belief in
the Lord. How much faith would be shown to reside in him, in relation to the
appearance of two angels of God? What would his response be if they
refused his hospitality? Angels are described in Hebrews 1:14, as "ministering
spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation."
The author of Hebrews also said, "Do not forget to
entertain strangers, for by so doing some have unwittingly entertained angels"
As to the Lord God, those who trust in Him are right now already "seated...
with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus"
(Ephesians 2:8) though we all to some extent remain blinded to this reality by the world's influence in our lives. But through faith in the Lord we are already
there, in heaven, surrounded by His holy angels who assist us continually.
Someday, like Lot, we will see them and we will rejoice at the continual work of
God that has been done in our lives through these angelic beings.
Verse 3. "Yet he urged them strongly, so they turned aside to him and entered
his house; and he prepared a feast for them, and baked unleavened bread, and
Note the apparent rejection of Lot's offer of hospitality, as
seen in Verse One. The angels, one of them anyway, said in Verse 2, "No, we shall
spend the night in the (public) square" of the city of Sodom. Also notice
Lot's response to their refusal. He kept on asking; he "urged them
strongly" as it says in this verse. At one point, Jesus told "a parable to
the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart" (Luke 18:1),
speaking of a judge who met a persistent widow. The judge was not a godly
man, but he was worn down to the extent that he finally gave into the widow's
Jesus concluded, "Will not God give justice to His elect who
cry to Him day and night? I tell you, He will give justice to them speedily."
Jesus ended His words with a sigh - "But when the Son of Man comes, will He find
faith on earth?" (Luke 18:7-8). Lot did not take "no" for an answer
because he knew of the danger in the city. The angels knew about it also, but made the attempt to leave, testing the goodness, mercy and
hospitality that resided in Lot's heart. They stayed and "he prepared a
feast for them and baked unleavened bread, and they ate." What will you do
when the Lord tests the depth of the love and hospitality that is in your heart?
Verse 4. "Before they lay down, the men of the city, the men of Sodom,
surrounded the house, both young and old, all the people from every quarter;"
The city of Sodom had become utterly corrupt, and it all
started with selfishness. God encourages you to "love your neighbor as
yourself," in places like Leviticus 19:18, but the Sodomites had placed
their own needs ahead of their consideration of others. Scripture reveals the
underlying sin of Sodom was that "She and her daughter (Gomorrah)
fullness of food, and abundance of idleness; neither did she strengthen the hand
of the poor and needy" (Ezekiel 16:49). It's interesting how the sin
humanity manifests itself in willful
In Romans 1, a picture is painted of those who reject
God and "suppress the truth in unrighteousness" (Verse 18). They lapse
into idolatry, as did the Sodomites, and therefore "God also gave them up to
uncleanness," expressing itself (Verse 24 & forward) in sins
such as the "gay lifestyle"
which is so prevalent today. God will at some point take His protection
away from those who reject the Lord, allowing them to lapse into sin and justify
it as "socially acceptable behavior." "Sexual
immorality" is a real problem, along with "covetousness,
maliciousness... envy, murder, strife, deceit... whisperers, backbiters"
and more. Not only are those who do such things guilty, but also so
ones who "approve of those who practice them"
Verse 5. "and they called to Lot and said to him, 'Where are the men who came to
you tonight? Bring them out to us that we may have relations with them.'"
All the men of Sodom now surrounded the house of Lot, the
wealthy nephew of Abraham, and demanded that his two visitors, who happened to
be "angels" of God, as we saw in Verse One, be brought out to them. And
here in this verse, we see the awfulness of sin, degenerating to the level of
outwardly disgusting behavior, that stares us right in the face. "Bring them out to us," the men
demanded, "that we may have relations with them."
For those who would justify certain sins, insisting that if
we are "fair" people, we will turn a blind eye to such actions, this verse must
be noted. Acceptance of others works in both directions and we
must note that the men of Sodom had no concept of fairness in relation to the
two "men" who were in the house of Lot. The problem
with sin is that it
corrupts people and blinds them to the needs and rights of others. If the
"gay rights" people have their way, this verse is not only from the past, but it
also depicts the future for our world today. Sinfulness is not a "private
matter," but instead is a contagious disease that grows and reaches out to infect everyone.
Father, open our understanding that we might see, not only
our own need, but also the needs of those around us. We pray for our
leaders, our neighbors, our land, that we might repent of our sins and
trust in the Lord. In Jesus Name. Amen.
Audio Bible Study - Genesis 19:6-10
Verses 6-7. "But Lot went out to them at the doorway, and shut the door behind him,
and said, 'Please, my brothers, do not act wickedly.'"
"Lot," Abraham's nephew, the son
of Abraham's brother, Haran (Genesis 11:31), now did a very brave thing.
He darted out through the front door of his house, slammed it shut and faced
the selfish, angry mob, consisting of the men of Sodom, his townspeople in the place where he had
chosen to live. He was about to do what he should have done a long time
ago. He confronted the sinners that were all around him, and shouted to
them, "Please my brothers, do not act wickedly."
They were not his "brothers"
because unlike him, they had no regard for the Lord whatsoever. Lot was
actually like so many in our world today. Sin is all around us, but we are
confused by the voices of those who shout, "be fair" to others who believe
and act differently than we do. And yet, where is the line where we must stand up
and decide, YES we care for people, but NO, we will not allow sin to fill our
land? Lot was now standing up for what he believed, but it was far too
late in time. He had been concerned about his reputation, his standing in
the community, worrying about what people might think instead of taking a stand
for the Lord. Because of it, he would now lose everything; his wife, his
property - everything.
Verse 8. "Now behold, I have two daughters who have not had relations with man;
please let me bring them out to you, and do to them whatever you like; only do
nothing to these men, inasmuch as they have come under the shelter of my roof."
Lot retained some faith in the Lord. As discussed in
Verse One of this Chapter, the Apostle Peter later referred to "righteous Lot," calling him "that
righteous man," in 2 Peter 2:7-8 & context. Peter relates that the
sin surrounding Lot "tormented his righteous soul from day to day by seeing and
hearing their lawless deeds" (2 Peter 2:7-8). He was horrified by what he
had seen and heard, but felt, "I'm just one man, what can I possibly do?" He could have been a force for the good because we are not in
this world alone - God is with us! And God was with Lot.
And yet note that if we, like Lot, do
not decide to pray that God will help us do something about it, then WE will be
corrupted like Lot was. We see that his judgment had become impaired to the
point where, in his desperation, he had lost sight of right and wrong. His
daughters were right inside the door behind him, listening as he shouted the terrible
words, "I have two daughters who have not had relations with man; please let me
bring them out to you, and do to them whatever you like." Later in this
Chapter, we will see the ruinous effect upon him and his daughters because of
his attempt to be a nice guy, to compromise with sin.
Verse 9. "But they said, 'Stand aside.' Furthermore, they said,
'This one came
in as an alien, and already he is acting like a judge; now we will treat you
worse than them.' So they pressed hard against Lot and came near to break the
It was far too late to act in relation to the sinfulness of
Sodom, but Lot,
Abraham's nephew, did do something very brave, standing alone against the mob of
men who were attempting to break into his house and attack his guests. He
also had spoken foolishly, as we saw in the preceding verse, jeopardizing any
feelings of security in his young daughters.
They had already been corrupted by the sin of that place and were now shocked
even more by the callous, uncaring words that came from their Dad.
They already felt unsafe in such a place, but the words of
their father were what modern people would call "abusive," and indeed the girls
would have felt abused and abandoned. Any feelings of protection they had
were now gone, and the door was bending inward, pressed by the mob of men on
their front porch. The men of Sodom were now focusing their anger on Lot, calling
him names and threatening him. To them he was an "alien" and
they contemptuously referred to him as a "judge." Their
bodies pressed hard against Lots body, who was in deep trouble.
Verse 10. "But the men reached out their hands and brought Lot into the house
with them, and shut the door."
Mere seconds were passing, but it must have seemed to Lot and
his daughters that the frightening moment reflected by these verses went on for
a long time. It was at precisely this moment that the "two men," referred to as
"angels" in Verse One, now acted. The door was briefly opened by one of
the angels who were presently in the form of men, surprising the men outside, and the
quickly pulled Lot inside, slamming and latching the door against the battering
and screaming of the mob.
Does it seem to you that God often brings healing to the
situations and lives of people at what seems like the "eleventh hour?" A
lot of people have referred to the deliverance of the Lord as being precisely at
such a time - Right before or even after it seems too late, there He is,
bringing deliverance to His people. The timing of these "angels" was
perfect for Lot to find safety, and the truth is, God's timing is always perfect for Lot, for
you and for me. He reaches into our lives and brings us to safety just
when His help is needed.
Father, help us, enable us to be people of courage, acting
as You lead us for the benefit of Your Name and for the people around us.
We often do not know what to do. Show us Your will and help us to walk in
it. In Jesus Name. Amen.
Audio Bible Study 2/5/10 - Genesis 19:11-15
Verse 11. "They struck the men who were at the doorway of the house with
blindness, both small and great, so that they wearied themselves trying to find
Continuing the commentary on the preceding verse,
God now gave more help to Lot, his wife and his daughters.
The Lord's holy angels struck the angry mob of men outside the door with sudden, utter blindness.
It could have been done sooner, but then we would not have seen the bravery of
Lot in facing the mob by himself. And we also would not have seen the
corruption of his thoughts as reflected by the horrible words he said about his
daughters in Verse 8. The evil men who were outside the door had only one
idea, to bring harm to Lot and his guests,
now they could not see anything, including the door they wanted to force their
way into. Their minds had only selfish thoughts as their hands
continued to grope along the wall, but they could not do any harm.
Notice anew the power of sin, which begins as something
small in our lives and then grows larger, enslaving those who give in to it.
We see this in the abuse of alcohol and other drugs, and in aberrant behavior, such as
the seeking of prostitutes and the commission of other sins that does include promiscuity and homosexuality. We should be warned by
these verses that giving in to sin within a culture, the performing of actions that the Bible views
as sinful, bring repercussions. Sin gradually destroys the
judgment of the sinner. This mob was so corrupted that they
continued attempting to force their way in, even after their eyes were gone.
Verse 12. "Then the two men said to Lot, 'Whom else have you here? A son-in-law,
and your sons, and your daughters, and whomever you have in the city, bring them
out of the place;'"
The "two men" were identified as "two angels" in Verse
One. They were immensely powerful beings as compared to anyone in humanity, but
they were also limited by not knowing everything. They were aware
that Lot had a family, especially they now knew that Lot had daughters, but they
were unclear about who else was under Lot's protection. Only God knows all
things. The reference to "sons" and "a son-in-law"
likely meant the daughters were betrothed to be married, as borne out by the
words of Verse 14. The girls were engaged.
The "sons" were sons-in-law to be. There also was a
wife, the spouse of Lot, who will be mentioned again in Verse 15. Note that the
Lord understands the concern you have for your loved ones. He will move
heaven and earth to save the ones you care for. You can see an instance of
this in Acts 2:38, where Peter, speaking in the power of God, said about the
giving of the Holy Spirit, "The promise is to you and to your children..."
The Lord cares for you and He cares for those you love.
Verse 13. "for we are about to destroy this place, because their outcry has
become so great before the Lord that the Lord has sent us to destroy it."
The mission of the angels in the place called Sodom, now was
crystal clear to all who were in the house of Lot. The people of Sodom had
become unregenerate sinners who were not going to repent of what they had done. These
men outside the door right that minute had committed abominable sins in the
sight of God and they had no interest in stopping. The behavior during
the night of the townspeople, when they continued to hunger for their sin even
when they had lost their vision is ample proof that they were not about
to change their ways.
These people had rejected God and with cunning arguments they
the laws of Sodom to be gradually modified so that their way of life became the norm.
They were unregenerate idolaters and so "God gave them up to uncleanness, in the
lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves," a process you
can read about in Romans 1:24 & its context. What all this leads to is
listed in Romans 1:29 & forward - They were "filled with all unrighteousness,
sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness... envy, murder,
strife, deceit..." and more.
Verse 14. "Lot went out and spoke to his sons-in-law, who were to marry his
daughters, and said, 'Up, get out of this place, for the Lord will destroy the
city.' But he appeared to his sons-in-law to be jesting."
How would you react if the minister in a local church near you
suddenly and publicly said, "Up, get out of this place, for the Lord will
destroy the city." The answer, for a person who loves the Lord, might well
be to do what it says in the last portion of the Letter of First
Thessalonians. We are told there to "PRAY without ceasing!" (1
Thessalonians 5:17). In other words, we should be praying about the events
and people in our lives at ALL times; in addition to those moments when disaster
The Scripture goes further, for the Lord DOES communicate with His
people, and we should not automatically dismiss the words of someone who
purports to be speaking for the Lord. "Do not quench the Spirit," and it
continues, "Do not despise prophecies" (1 Thessalonians 5:19-20). But
then, Paul, the human author of First Thessalonians, continues with the
important words, "TEST all things." You don't have to run out
of the door and
away from the city every time someone says, "The end is near." But you
should be searching the Scriptures at the present time, for in addition to "test
all things," it also says, "hold fast what is good," and "abstain from every form
of evil." Read the Bible, prepare yourself, and then pray - always!
Otherwise, you might become like the "sons-in-law" of "Lot," who thought he was
Verse 15. "When morning dawned, the angels urged Lot, saying,
'Up, take your
wife and your two daughters who are here, or you will be swept away in the
punishment of the city.'"
The "sons-in-law" of Lot, the men who were engaged to his
daughters, thought he was making jokes when he told them to "get out of this
place, for the Lord will destroy the city," and they were now going
to die. Some time had passed, for the angels had allowed Lot's family
to get a little sleep, which they did, exhausted by the events of the previous
night. The "morning dawned" and the household, including the wife of Lot
and their two daughters, suddenly woke up at the urging of the two angels who
had appeared in the form of men.
And notice that Lot, his wife and his daughters were being
given a choice. Lot was told, "Take your wife and your two
daughters who are here, or you will be swept away in the punishment of the city."
The two sons-in-law of the previous verses had made their choice - they were
gone from Lot's house. Those who remained must now choose as well.
The whole city of Sodom, and those in the surrounding cities had chosen to
reject the Lord, and now they would die in their sins. In this verse we
await the answers of the individuals in Lot's family - Will they trust in the
Lord's word through these angels or not? If they don't, they
Father, Your people tend to be overly timid or too
forceful. Fill us with Your Holy Spirit and a need to pray. Save us
from destruction and help us to be a force for good in the world, as led by the
Lord. In Jesus Name. Amen.
Audio Bible Study - Genesis 19:16-20
Verse 16. "But he hesitated. So the men seized his hand and the hand of his wife
and the hands of his two daughters, for the compassion of the Lord was upon him;
and they brought him out, and put him outside the city."
Lot, the nephew of Abraham, now "hesitated." He had many sheep, goats and other
animals, along with a lot of herdsmen and other servants, as we saw in Genesis Chapter 13.
He had a fine home, as is intimated in these verses. He had money and
prestige. And he also had two angels of God in his house telling him that if he
did not leave Sodom immediately, he would die! But if he went, he would lose everything he
had; and he had a great deal! Then the men, these angels in the form of men, now
"seized his hand" and also took the hands of the others,
pulling them all out
of the house into the street.
Some of the townspeople, consisting of the men of Sodom, must have still
wandering around in the city streets, blinded by the angels on the previous
evening. Lot and his wife and daughters would have heard and drawn back
from their pathetic
moans while following the angels toward the city gate. The angels stayed
with the family, and please note that angels are with you as well. You are being
pulled toward safety in the Lord, and unless you prefer the things of this world
to the love of the Lord, you WILL be rescued from the problems, the sins of humanity.
And note none of us deserve "the compassion of the Lord."
Lot's rescue tells us that the grace of God is based on faith, even though our
response to Him may be small.
Verse 17. "When they had brought them outside, one said, 'Escape for your life!
Do not look behind you, and do not stay anywhere in the valley; escape to the
mountains, or you will be swept away.'"
One of the two angels now admonished Lot, his wife and his
daughters to run for their lives! The place would be destroyed! The
whole valley was to be ruined for all time! They must go to the "mountains"
or they all would die! Please note that the events of the previous evening
should have alerted them to the reality of the situation presented through the two angels.
They must escape! But those mountains must have looked very far away to Lot at
the moment! The
instructions given were very clear: "Do not
look behind you... do not stay anywhere in the valley..." They must get
out of town - quickly!
They were being led to physical safety, but the Bible warns of
an even greater danger that threatens all of humanity, and it is subtle because
it is "out of this world" - a potential disaster at the end of our
lives on earth.
Jesus told us in many creative ways how to escape this great danger, and it all
boils down to one word - believe! He said, "God so
loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him
should not perish but have everlasting life" (John 3:16). Now is
the time for all who have read those words to BELIEVE in the Lord. He is the
One who will save you, even though the world will perish.
Verse 18. "But Lot said to them, 'Oh no, my lords!'"
There is an old English expression, "He who hesitates is
lost" and it was true for Lot right at that minute. He was being
offered a way of escape from the destruction of the evil city of Sodom and its
surrounding areas. There is no doubt in my mind, after walking with the Lord
for decades, that if Lot was badly out of condition physically, after many
years of living in that city, the Lord would have delayed destroying Sodom for as
long as it took until an exhausted Lot finally reached the "mountains" mentioned in the preceding verse.
But as we see in the next verse, he wanted to stop and not go on.
His response is no different from that of many people of today. We will see Lot's concern in the next verse, but what is
yours? If God called you to leave your country and enter some kind of
ministry, would you want to wait until your financial situation is perfectly
secure? Do you have a family and don't want to
jeopardize their situation? Are you sickly, too weak to make any kind of journey?
Are you too... what? "Many are called, but few chosen,"
Jesus stated in Matthew 20:15, and the reason that few are chosen is
because most do not
want to go. Lot did not want to go.
Verse 19. "Now behold, your servant has found favor in your sight, and you have
magnified your lovingkindness, which you have shown me by saving my life; but I
cannot escape to the mountains, for the disaster will overtake me and I will
Even though Lot agreed to go with the angels out of the city,
he did it with some, perhaps a great deal of reluctance. "The men seized
his hand" as we saw in Verse 16, suggesting that if they had not physically
pulled him from Sodom, he would not have gone at all. The angels were not going
any further with him, not visibly anyway, and Lot, who possibly slumped down on the
ground in despair at this point, wanted to stop and not go any further.
Lot was whimpering. He was appreciative that his
life was being spared, but that's about as far as it went. From his
perspective, his life actually was over. His house was going to be destroyed, his
many sheep, goats and other animals were lost to him, his servants, male and
female were no longer his - economically he was ruined. And it is very
interesting that he was not pleading for the lives of his wife and daughters.
Yes he had a tiny bit of true faith in the Lord and because of it he would be
saved - which should give all of us hope because of the Lord's response to this
man. If God would save Lot on the basis of his belief, there is certain hope for
ALL who place their faith in the Lord.
Verse 20. "now behold, this town is near enough to flee to, and it is small.
Please, let me escape there (is it not small?) that my life may be saved."
Lot should have continued on to the mountains as the angels
urged him to do. There was nothing for him in this little "town" of Bela,
which was also called Zoar. And it's likely that if Lot with his small
faith became a resident of Zoar, he would be the only person in the place who
had any kind of faith in the Lord. The disturbing sins of Sodom would have
surrounded him once more. It's true for so many in this
world that the need to possess material goods can be a greater force than our common
Jesus made an interesting statement in Matthew 10:38-39 -
"Whoever does not take his cross and follow Me is not worthy of Me. Whoever
finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for My sake will find
it." Lot's "cross" at the moment
involved the loss of his material possessions. Most of our lives we have been like Lot, who valued his lifestyle far too
much. And it's a continuing concern to note that he is not pleading for the lives of his wife or daughters.
His stated concern is that "MY life might be saved."
Lot should have been a safe father for his daughters, but instead he betrayed
them by his words. We need to take the
risk of losing life as we know it, and make the heroic step of really trusting
in the Lord.
Father, we trust in You and give our lives over to Your
care. Please forgive our sins, especially our unbelief, and make us clean in Christ Jesus.
Lead us, Lord, and help us as we follow You. In Jesus Name. Amen.
Audio Bible Study - Genesis 19:21-25
Verse 21. "He said to him, 'Behold, I grant you this request also, not to
overthrow the town of which you have spoken.'"
Lot, Abraham's nephew, had literally been pulled by his hands
city of Sodom by two angels sent from God. The intention was to save his
life, but it also meant that Lot would lose his home, his flocks in the lush
fields outside the city; everything he owned would be gone! He was stunned
and was slow to respond. He had been told to "escape to the hills"
or to the "mountains" in many translations, but now he was begging that he might be
permitted to remain in the nearby town of Bela, also called Zoar. It is
also very possible that wealthy Lot was so out of condition physically because
of his sedentary urban life, that he was unable to walk any further.
Time was short and God was determined to save Lot's life.
His request to stop was granted and Zoar would be spared. Note that Lot
selected a second-best solution for his future. God would have stayed His
almighty hand of judgment until Lot reached the mountains, just like you and I don't
need to worry, also. God is watching out for us, just like He was for Lot.
Also see that Lot's choice resulted in the saving of Zoar. This small,
corrupt place would survive to pass the sins of Sodom on to yet another
Verse 22. "'Hurry, escape there, for I cannot do anything until you arrive
there.' Therefore the name of the town was called Zoar."
This little town was seen previously in Genesis 14, Verses 2
and 8, under the name of "Bela," which translates as "destruction." After
Sodom and the surrounding cities were destroyed, the place came to be called, "Zoar,"
which means "little." However sinful this little place was, it would
survive for a time, not because of any faith among the villagers, but because of
the fear and discouragement of Lot. Behind the fear of this man, however,
was the Lord's love, not only for Lot, but also for his uncle Abraham,
who was, no doubt fervently praying for his nephew, Lot, at the moment of this
Lot had a little faith. Abraham, his uncle, had greater faith in the Lord. Note that if you become willing to trust in the
Lord, even in small ways, the Lord will notice you and watch out for you.
That time when you did not have the accident, but it was close, was it not the
Lord watching out for you? If you lose your income, will the Lord take
care of you? Yes he will. Just like Lot, who wavered in his faith,
but did have some belief in the Lord, God is watching out for ALL who will place even the
smallest trust in the Lord.
Verse 23. "The sun had risen over the earth when Lot came to Zoar."
We saw in Verse 15 that the angels dragged Lot and his family
out of their home in Sodom, and now we see that another morning had dawned. Some time had passed at
the moment of this verse and the reluctant travelers were now at the gates of the village of Zoar (or Bela),
and Zoar, as mentioned before, meant "little." It was a very
tiny town that Lot had chosen and he likely had no resources in the place.
He would have no way to live there, except he might stay in the village inn, if they had
one. His money, if he had managed to bring some, would not last. Lot
was making the latest in a history of poor choices for his life.
We won't see much of Lot in Scripture after this chapter.
There is no mention that he ever met with his Uncle Abraham again, but his life
is an important account for us all. Just like his uncle, who also made
mistakes in his own life, Lot did have some faith in the Lord. This younger man got
discouraged, he trusted too much in his money and his skills as a money-manager,
and it is interesting that the Lord allowed all his holdings to go away.
He would become "righteous Lot" as Peter reported in 2 Peter 2:7, though at a
Verse 24. "Then the Lord rained on Sodom and Gomorrah brimstone and fire from
the Lord out of heaven,"
It's not made clear, from the language of these verses, exactly
what the "brimstone and fire" specified in this verse is all about. The
word "fire" is sometimes used to describe the fall of lightning in the Old
Testament, which is probably what is being referred to in 1 Kings 18:38, 2 Kings
1:10, and Job 1:16. Some translations use the word "sulfur" in place of
"brimstone," calling it "sulfur and fire." No attempt is made in these
verses to explain those substances from a scientific standpoint. The very
real destruction of the place is presented as an act of God, a miracle.
Whatever "rained" on the region at that point, it effectively
destroyed a place that had previously been so green, so fertile that Lot, Abraham's
nephew, had chosen it over any other place in what is sometimes called
Palestine. He wanted to be there for the rest of his life because it was
lush and green, perfect for his herds of animals. The whole area at the
point of this verse was suddenly turned into one of the most infertile areas of
the planet. What IS shown here is the utter power of God. And note
that those who reject Him are headed for complete destruction.
Verse 25. "and He overthrew those cities, and all the valley, and all the
inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the ground."
The word "overthrew" in this verse literally means
"turned-over." Whatever "brimstone and fire" might have been, the ground under
the region suddenly experienced a rapid down-thrusting and upheaval which
literally "turned over" the outer crust of the earth. It's like you were
carrying a plate of food to the table and dropped it. It then landed
upside down on the floor. The ruins of Sodom and Gomorrah may be under the
Dead Sea as many have thought, but they also may be deep underground, "turned
over" like that plate of food.
This is one of the first recorded instances since the Great
Flood, of God's judgment on the awfulness of sin. Note that sin will
destroy us. God is holy, which means He is pure, utterly without fault.
He is "love" (1 John 4:8), and as our infinitely good, loving parent, He will
protect His people from harm. By destroying Sodom, He protected others in
the region by removing the cancer of sin from their midst. Everything in that place was
wiped out, and its sin was no more. The exception, of course, was Zoar,
which was like a spot of cancer in an otherwise healthy body.
Father, heal us, heal our land. When You call us
out, away from the sin of this world, give us the desire and the courage to
respond to Your will. We need You, Lord, and we trust in You now. In
Jesus Name. Amen.
Audio Bible Study - Genesis 19:26-30
Verse 26. "But his wife, from behind him, looked back, and she became a pillar
The two angels of these verses in Genesis had told Lot and the others
who were with him as reflected in Verse
17: "Do not look back." Some have noticed that in order for Lot to know
that his wife "looked back" and see that she died
because of it, he would have
had to have "looked back" too, in order to know what had happened. But there is a
difference. Lot was not a bad person. He was merely somewhat
shallow and self-centered like most in this world. He undoubtedly did what a good
husband and father would do, by glancing back at his wife and daughters
from time to time, making sure they were keeping up.
The Hebrew word in 19:17 and in this verse did not refer to a
quick glance, but instead it meant to GAZE, to look intently at something.
His wife looked back intently with a desire to return to Sodom, and disobeyed
the Word of the Lord which came through the two angels. Note by the way,
there are many great deposits of rock salt in that area. When it says "she
became a pillar of salt," it may mean that she had stopped to gaze
backward and as she
paused for a long moment, she was buried by a sudden up-thrusting as a salt
deposit burst through the shaky ground. When Lot looked
at her, he would have been shocked to see what appeared to be a pillar of salt
where his wife had stood just moments before.
Verse 27. "Now Abraham arose early in the morning and went to the place where he
had stood before the Lord;"
The written record of the scenes recorded by these verses, now changes from an on-the-spot
report about the progress of Lot, to the place where Abraham, Lot's uncle, "had
stood before the Lord." Abraham was presently at what was called the "Oaks of Mamre,"
a number of miles west of what is now called the Dead Sea. It was the
place where he had prayed and negotiated with the Lord, hoping that God would
spare the city-state of Sodom and the other communities of that area.
Abraham may well have continued in prayer after the departure
of the Lord and His angels, but it is not mentioned that he did. The man
thought of the place where he stood as a holy place because of His previous encounters with the Lord. But
at the moment he certainly was at the least very anxious and he must have been
pacing back and forth as he considered the recent events that might mean trouble,
for his beloved nephew, Lot.
Verse 28. "and he looked down toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward all the land
of the valley, and he saw, and behold, the smoke of the land ascended like the
smoke of a furnace."
A literal mushroom cloud arose far up into the atmosphere from
the area that had previously contained the city-states of Sodom and Gomorrah.
Abraham, staring in that direction, gasped. He suddenly knew that there had
not been even ten righteous people in that place, in relation to his prayer of
Genesis 18:32-33. He may well have wept at that
moment, for it would have seemed to him that his beloved nephew, Lot, had been
killed in the blast furnace that destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah. Those
places were no more.
It could have seemed to Abraham that God had not answered his
prayer. From his vantage point, not only had Sodom been obliterated, but
his nephew, Lot, was dead as well. Our problem is like his, when it seems
that God has not heard or answered our need. But note Genesis 19:29 - "God
remembered Abraham and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow..." We
must consider these verses, for God HAS heard you and He remembers, even when
you don't see His answer at the moment. Our vantage point is limited, but
His is not and He hears your prayer.
Verse 29. "Thus it came about, when God destroyed the cities of the valley, that
God remembered Abraham, and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow, when He
overthrew the cities in which Lot lived."
Isn't this interesting! "God remembered" the prayers of
Abraham. He also "remembered" Abraham's real intention in praying,
he asked for the continued existance of Sodom and Gomorrah. God knew that
Abraham's real concern was for the safety of his nephew, Lot. God knew and
He "remembered." The younger man
was saved from "the midst of the overthrow" because Abraham cared so much for
him. The nephew was not specifically mentioned in Abraham's prayer of
Genesis 18:16-33, but God knew Abraham's thoughts, just as He knows yours.
What about you, by the way? You may have uttered prayers
in the night or in a hospital room, that seemed to bounce off the ceiling.
Did He hear you? Does He care? We have seen and heard about instances of hospice nurses who brought a loved one to the Lord right before
they died and the family did not know about it until much later or perhaps they
never heard. It was only known to the nurse, to God, and someone she told. Trust in
the Lord. Your prayer is important, so are you, and your loved ones matter
Verse 30. "Lot went up from Zoar, and stayed in the mountains, and his two daughters
with him; for he was afraid to stay in Zoar; and he stayed in a cave, he and his
Lot left the town of Zoar as fast as he could. He
probably bought a wagon and loaded it with provisions before he left. That
is indeed suggested by Genesis 19:32 & forward, when his daughters said, "Let us
make our father drink wine." If they had a supply of wine, they likely had
purchased everything needed for a long stay "in the mountains." Lot may well have,
as an experienced herdsman, bought sheep and goats in Zoar for the journey.
"Zoar," by the way, was still called "Bela" at the time of Lot. It was
later, in the time of Moses (who wrote these words in Genesis), that the town
began to be called, "Zoar.
Note that "Lot went up from Zoar" because "he was afraid to
stay in Zoar." The inhabitants of that little place were meant to be destroyed
because of their utter sinfulness but were spared because of Lot. He had
been told, "Do not look back or stop anywhere in the valley" (Genesis 19:17),
but he stopped at Bela-Zoar and the place was spared because of him (Genesis
19:21-22). God would have given him the strength and the time to reach the
mountains, but he stopped at Zoar and now he was afraid of the people in that
place. How many times have we acted in a certain manner, but what we have
done leads to fear?
Lord, we have followed You in part, but You are so good,
holy, just and full of love that we should utterly abandon ourselves to Your
leading and Your care. Please forgive us and receive our lives. We
trust in You now. In Jesus Name. Amen.
Audio Bible Study - Genesis 19:31-38
Verse 31. "Then the firstborn said to the younger, "Our father is old, and there
is not a man on earth to come in to us after the manner of the earth."
In this verse and the ones that follow, we glimpse into the minds of two young women who had lived all their lives in a
"permissive society." They also had just experienced an unprecedented
disaster - their country, their home was destroyed and their fiancés were now dead. And then, as they were
escaping the carnage that fell on the land, their mother was suddenly killed.
They were grieving her loss and the loss of everything that had seemed stable in
their lives. Their future seemed - gone!
At this instant they were lamenting the
marriages, children and homes that now seemed impossible for them. As far
as they knew, everyone else in the world had been killed in the blast that took
Sodom, except for those creepy men they had encountered in Zoar while being
dragged away from their own city. They saw no hope for the future and the
permissiveness they had known all their lives had stunted their decision-making
abilities to determine what is
right and what is wrong in life.
Verse 32. "Come, let us make our father drink wine, and let us lie with him that
we may preserve our family through our father."
The way these daughters of Lot thought about him was stated in
Verse 31 - "Our father is old," they agreed. The three were huddling in a
cave not so very far from the ruins of what had been their family home. For
all they knew, everyone else in the world had been killed except themselves and a few
others. They had been raised in a culture with a warped view of morality,
and now, desperately, they began to look at their father, thinking, "He can give
These young women were grieving the loss of everything! Any hopes
they had for children seemed gone, and there is no doubt that they mourned their
fiancés, who had laughed at their father, Lot, and stayed behind to die in the
destruction of Sodom. When morality breaks down in a society, everyone is
corrupted. These girls were trying to make some sense out of life, to have some kind
of future, and all they had for preparation was the selfish mindset that was
the philosophy which had been prevalent in the city of Sodom.
Verses 33-35. "So they made their father drink wine that night, and the firstborn
went in and lay with her father; and he did not know when she lay down or when
she arose. On the following day, the firstborn said to the younger, 'Behold, I
lay last night with my father; let us make him drink wine tonight also; then you
go in and lie with him, that we may preserve our family through our father.' So they made their father drink wine that night also, and the younger
arose and lay with him; and he did not know when she lay down or when she arose."
We know something about these girls from Verse 8 of this
chapter. In a moment of fear, Lot had shouted out to the mob of men who
were clawing at the door of his house in Sodom, "I have two daughters who have
not had relations with man." To his understanding, at least, his
daughters had never experienced sexual relations and they were shocked by Lot's
words about them. They each had fiancés in Sodom;
young men who were promised to them in marriage. But now those young men
were dead, as was their mother. All the other young men were dead also.
They wanted to give and receive love as a way to cope with the extreme grief they were
feeling, and so the oldest daughter decided to have a child.
She decided she would LOVE it and experience the feelings that having a
child would bring. She acted on that need in relation to the only man in
sight, her father, and would suggest the same course of action to her
impressionable younger sister. Her plan was to use some of the supply of
wine they brought with them from either Sodom or Zoar, suggesting to their
father that a few drinks would make them all feel better. They no
doubt felt guilt about their actions, but they wanted to LIVE and the more wine
they drank, the easier it became. This was done on consecutive nights, and Lot,
who must have figured all this out after it happened, must have thoroughly
regretted his decisions of the past, especially moving those many years before to the
corrupt city-state of Sodom.
Verse 36. "Thus both the daughters of Lot were with child by their father."
It's reasonable to wonder about the pregnancies of these two
young women, who may have been teenagers at the time. WHY would God allow
them to conceive? Even though their father was so drunk that "he did not
know when (his daughters) lay down or when (they)
arose," as we saw in Verses 33
and 35, most cultures would forbid such an act; and if it happened, someone like
Lot would have been put in jail, whether he remembered what he did or not.
What we will see in the next two verses is the consequence of
sin, and it all started with Abraham. God said to the man, who was known
as Abram at that time, "Get out of your country, from your kindred and from your
father's house..." and further, "I will make you a great nation..." (Genesis
12:1-2). The man did leave, but he took his "kindred," his nephew, Lot,
with him. In Verses 37 and 38, we will glimpse the harm brought by Lot and
his daughters to the "nation" (Israel) that was to come from and through Abraham.
Verses 37-38. "The firstborn bore a son, and called his name
Moab; he is the father of the Moabites to this day. As for the younger, she also bore a son, and called his name Ben-ammi;
he is the father of the sons of Ammon to this day."
Lot's eldest daughter, his "firstborn," bore her father a son
through an act of incest. He was so drunk that he did not know what he was
doing, but his lack of comprehension is not an excuse. Lot was never
supposed to leave Haran, their ancestral home, in the first place, but he did
and subsequently, we saw in Genesis 13:10-11, that Lot was given his choice
and made a decision to live in Sodom. He had a basic faith in the Lord,
but he was what might be called a "nominal" believer. He kept his faith to
Living in Sodom corrupted him and his family. They liked
living in the place and because of his apparent wealth, they had a successful
business and a fine home. He did not want to jeopardize their situation
and as the various sins of Sodom grew, he kept quiet about his faith. His wife liked
their lives so much that she looked back longingly at Sodom, though she was told
not to, and she was killed. His daughters were raised in Sodom, knew
nothing else, and the low standards of the place were the norm for them.
Corrupted minds lead to corrupt actions, like the birth of the two sons
mentioned in these verses.
"Moab" (seed) and "Ben-ammi" (son of my people) grew up to
become the progenitors of the Moabites and the Ammonites, two nations that
would be thorns in the flesh of the future nation Israel. The people
called Moab located themselves east of the Jordan River (Numbers 21:13-15).
They later refused Israel passage to Canaan, the land of the promise to Abraham,
and they sent Balaam to curse Israel (Numbers 22:24). They were denounced
by the prophets (Isaiah 15-16, Jeremiah 9:26, Ezekiel 25:8-11 and more).
It should be noted, however, that Ruth was the Moabitess (Ruth 1:4) who married
Boaz, grandfather of King David of Israel, and became an ancestor of the Messiah.
God turns even our mistakes, our base actions into "good" (Romans 8:28).
Lord, what we call "permissiveness" is filling our world
today, just as it did then, and it leads to destruction. Help our leaders,
our people to find You. Lead us into revival, into paths of righteousness.
In Jesus Name. Amen.