Genesis 19v1-11: Just Lot or……Just Lot Part 2

19:1  And there came two angels to Sodom at even; and Lot sat in the gate of Sodom: and Lot seeing them rose up to meet them; and he bowed himself with his face toward the ground;

19:2  And he said, Behold now, my lords, turn in, I pray you, into your servant’s house, and tarry all night, and wash your feet, and ye shall rise up early, and go on your ways. And they said, Nay; but we will abide in the street all night.

19:3  And he pressed upon them greatly; and they turned in unto him, and entered into his house; and he made them a feast, and did bake unleavened bread, and they did eat.

19:4 But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter:

19:5  And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them.

19:6  And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him,

19:7  And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly.

19:8  Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof.

19:9  And they said, Stand back. And they said again, This one fellow came in to sojourn, and he will needs be a judge: now will we deal worse with thee, than with them. And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and came near to break the door.

19:10  But the men put forth their hand, and pulled Lot into the house to them, and shut to the door.

19:11  And they smote the men that were at the door of the house with blindness, both small and great: so that they wearied themselves to find the door.

 

Two of the visitors from chapter 18 have come to the city of Gomorrah.  The Angel of the Lord had stated that their intent was to see if the cry against the city was as bad as it seemed.  When they come to the entrance of the city, they encounter Lot, who, it seems has taken a place of a judge in the city.

19:1  And there came two angels to Sodom at even; and Lot sat in the gate of Sodom: and Lot seeing them rose up to meet them; and he bowed himself with his face toward the ground;

19:2  And he said, Behold now, my lords, turn in, I pray you, into your servant’s house, and tarry all night, and wash your feet, and ye shall rise up early, and go on your ways. And they said, Nay; but we will abide in the street all night.

19:3  And he pressed upon them greatly; and they turned in unto him, and entered into his house; and he made them a feast, and did bake unleavened bread, and they did eat.

 

Lot was the nephew of Abraham. His father had died and I would imagine that Abraham had treated Lot like one of his own from the beginning. Lot had lived and moved with him for some time now. He had also prospered along side his uncle, so much that they had come to a point where they no longer could dwell together because of strife between their servants and the need for grazing areas.

Abraham lets Lot choose where he wants to dwell first, giving him control as to where he would go and deciding where his uncle would go as well. This would have been a perfect time to honor his uncle but that did not seem to be on his mind.

 

 

10 And Lot lifted his eyes and saw all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered everywhere (before the LORD destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah) like the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt as you go toward Zoar. 11 Then Lot chose for himself all the plain of Jordan, and Lot journeyed east. And they separated from each other. 12 Abram dwelt in the land of Canaan, and Lot dwelt in the cities of the plain and pitched his tent even as far as Sodom. 13 But the men of Sodom were exceedingly wicked and sinful against the LORD.

 

 

 

He looked around for the place of most prosperity. This is all well and good but it leads Lot into eventual temptation and devastation in regards to his whole family.

Lot decides to dwell in the city and he then pitches his tent toward Sodom

His next step is to pitch his tent in Sodom

Eventually Sodom takes control of his life and he becomes entangled within its sinful grasp.

 

19:4 But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter:

19:5  And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them.

 

Sodom was one of a group of five towns, the Pentapolis (Wisdom 10:6): Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, Zeboim, and Bela — also called Zoar (Genesis 19:22). The Pentapolis region is also collectively referred to as “the Cities of the Plain” (Genesis 13:12) since they were all sited on the plain of the Jordan River, in an area that constituted the southern limit of the lands of the Canaanites (Genesis 10:19

Classical Jewish texts do not stress the homosexual aspect of the attitude of the inhabitants of Sodom as much as their cruelty and lack of hospitality to the “stranger.” The people of Sodom were seen as guilty of many other significant sins. Rabbinic writings affirm that the Sodomites also committed economic crimes, blasphemy and bloodshed. One of the worst was to give money or even gold ingots to beggars, after inscribing their names on them, and then subsequently refusing to sell them food. The unfortunate stranger would end up starving and after their death, the people who gave him the money would reclaim it.

A rabbinic tradition, described in the Mishnah, postulates that the sin of Sodom was related to property: Sodomites believed that “what is mine is mine, and what is yours is yours” (Abot), which is interpreted as a lack of compassion. Another rabbinic tradition is that these two wealthy cities treated visitors in a sadistic fashion. One major crime done to strangers was almost identical to that of Procrustes in Greek mythology. This would be the story of the “bed” that guests to Sodom were forced to sleep in: if they were too short they were stretched to fit it, and if they were too tall, they were cut up.

The view of Josephus

Now, about this time the Sodomites, overwhelmingly proud of their numbers and the extent of their wealth, showed themselves insolent to men and impious to the divinity, insomuch that they no more remembered the benefits that they had received from him, hated foreigners and avoided any contact with others. Indignant at this conduct, God accordingly resolved to chastise them for their arrogance, and not only to uproot their city, but to blast their land so completely that it should yield neither plant nor fruit whatsoever from that time forward.

Jewish Antiquities 1:194-195

and Josephus recounts that when angels came to Sodom to find good men they were instead greeted by rapists:

And the angels came to the city of the Sodomites…when the Sodomites beheld the young men, who were outstanding in beauty of appearance and who had been received into Lot’s house, they set about to do violence and outrage to their youthful beauty….Therefore, God, indignant at their bold acts, struck them with blindness, so that they were unable to find the entrance into the house, and condemned the Sodomites to destruction of the whole population.

Jewish Antiquities 1:199-202

He says how beautiful it was before everything was burned up, and how rich the towns were in the area. Josephus described what had happened:

Now this country is then so sadly burnt up, that nobody cares to come to it… It was of old a most happy land, both for the fruits it bore and the riches of its cities, although it be now all burnt up. It is related how for the impiety of its inhabitants, it was burnt by lightning; in consequence of which there are still the remainders of that divine fire; and the shadows of the five cities are still to be seen, as well as the ashes growing in their fruits, which fruits have a colour as if they were fit to be eaten: but if you pluck them with your hands, they will dissolve into smoke and ashes

The Wars of the Jews, book 4, chapter 8.

Philo of Alexandria (c. 20 BC to AD 50), a Jewish philosopher, theologian, and a contemporary of Jesus and Paul, comments,

“The land of the Sodomites, a part of Canaan afterwards called Palestinian Syria, was brimful of innumerable iniquities, particularly such as arise from gluttony and lewdness, and multiplied and enlarged every other possible pleasure with so formidable a menace that it had at last been condemned by the Judge of All…Incapable of bearing such satiety, plunging like cattle, they threw off from their necks the law of nature and applied themselves to…forbidden forms of intercourse. Not only in their mad lust for women did they violate the marriages of their neighbors, but also men mounted males without respect for the sex nature which the active partner shares with the passive; and so when they tried to beget children they were discovered to be incapable of any but a sterile seed. Yet the discovery availed them not, so much stronger was the force of the lust which mastered them. Then, as little by little they accustomed those who were by nature men to submit to play the part of women, they saddled them with the formidable curse of a female disease. For not only did they emasculate their bodies by luxury and voluptuousness but they worked a further degeneration in their souls and, as far as in them lay, were corrupting the whole of mankind.”

 

The inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah and the three other cities of the plain were sinful and godless. In their country there was an extensive vale, where they foregathered annually with their wives and their children and all belonging to them, to celebrate a feast lasting several days and consisting of the most revolting orgies. If a stranger merchant passed through their territory, he was besieged by them all, big and little alike, and robbed of whatever he possessed. Each one appropriated a bagatelle, until the traveller was stripped bare. If the victim ventured to remonstrate with one or another, he would show him that he had taken a mere trifle, not worth talking about. And the end was that they hounded him from the city.

Once upon a time it happened that a man journeying from Elam arrived in Sodom toward evening. No one could be found to grant him shelter for the night. Finally a sly fox named Hedor invited him cordially to follow him to his house. The Sodomite had been attracted by a rarely magnificent carpet, strapped to the stranger’s ass by means of a rope. He meant to secure it for himself. The friendly persuasions of Hedor induced the stranger to remain with him two days, though he had expected to stay only overnight. When the time came for him to continue on his journey, he asked his host for the carpet and the rope. Hedor said: “Thou hast dreamed a dream, and this is the interpretation of thy dream: the rope signifies that thou wilt have a long life, as long as a rope; the varicolored carpet indicates that thou wilt own an orchard wherein thou wilt plant all sorts of fruit trees.” The stranger insisted that his carpet was a reality, not a dream fancy, and he continued to demand its return. Not only did Hedor deny having taken anything from his guest, he even insisted upon pay for having interpreted his dream to him. His usual price for such services, he said, was four silver pieces, but in view of the fact that he was his guest, he would, as a favor to him, content himself with three pieces of silver.

After much wrangling, they put their case before one of the judges of Sodom, Sherek by name, and he said to the plaintiff, “Hedor is known in this city as a trustworthy interpreter of dreams, and what he tells thee is true.” The stranger declared himself not satisfied with the verdict, and continued to urge his side of the case. Then Sherek drove both the plaintiff and the defendant from the court room. Seeing this, the inhabitants gathered together and chased the stranger from the city, and lamenting the loss of his carpet, he had to pursue his way.

As Sodom had a judge worthy of itself, so also had the other cities–Sharkar in Gomorrah, Zabnak in Admah, and Manon in Zeboiim. Eliezer, the bondman of Abraham, made slight changes in the names of these judges, in accordance with the nature of what they did: the first he called Shakkara, Liar; the second Shakrura, Arch-deceiver; the third Kazban, Falsifier; and the fourth, Mazle-Din, Perverter of Judgment. At the suggestion of these judges, the cities set up beds on their commons. When a stranger arrived, three men seized him by his head, and three by his feet, and they forced him upon one of the beds. If he was too short to fit into it exactly, his six attendants pulled and wrenched his limbs until he filled it out; if he was too long for; it, they tried to jam him in with all their combined strength, until the victim was on the verge of death. Hit outcrles were met with the words, “Thus will be done to any man that comes into our land.”

After a while travellers avoided these cities, but if some poor devil was betrayed occasionally into entering them, they would give him gold and silver, but never any bread, so that he was bound to die of starvation. Once he was dead, the residents of the city came and took back the marked gold and silver which they had given him, and they would quarrel about the distribution of his clothes, for they would bury him naked.

Once Eliezer, the bondman of Abraham, went to Sodom, at the bidding of Sarah, to inquire after the welfare of Lot. He happened to enter the city at the moment when the people were robbing a stranger of his garments. Eliezer espoused the cause of the poor wretch, and the Sodomites turned against him; one threw a stone at his forehead and caused considerable loss of blood. Instantly, the assailant, seeing the blood gush forth, demanded payment for having performed the operation of cupping. Eliezer refused to pay for the infliction of a wound upon him, and he was haled before the judge Shakkara. The decision went against him, for the law of the land gave the assailant the right to demand payment. Eliezer quickly picked up a stone and threw it at the judge’s forehead. When he saw that the blood was flowing profusely, he said to the judge, “Pay my debt to the man and give me the balance.”

The cause of their cruelty was their exceeding great wealth. Their soil was gold, and in their miserliness and their greed for more and more gold, they wanted to prevent strangers from enjoying aught of their riches. Accordingly, they flooded the highways with streams of water, so that the roads to their city were obliterated, and none could find the way thither. They were as heartless toward beasts as toward men. They begrudged the birds what they ate, and therefore extirpated them. They behaved impiously toward one another, too, not shrinking back from murder to gain possession of more gold. If they observed that a man owned great riches, two of them would conspire against him. They would beguile him to the vicinity of ruins, and while the one kept him on the spot by pleasant converse, the other would undermine the wall near which he stood, until it suddenly crashed down upon him and killed him. Then the two plotters would divide his wealth between them.

Another method of enriching themselves with the property of others was in vogue among them. They were adroit thieves. When they made up their minds to commit theft, they would first ask their victim to take care of a sum of money for them, which they smeared with strongly scented oil before handing it over to him. The following night they would break into his house, and rob him of his secret treasures, led to the place of concealment by the smell of the oil.

Their laws were calculated to do injury to the poor. The richer a man, the more was he favored before the law. The owner of two oxen was obliged to render one day’s shepherd service, but if he had but one ox, he had to give two days’ service. A poor orphan, who was thus forced to tend the flocks a longer time than those who were blessed with large herds, killed all the cattle entrusted to him in order to take revenge upon his oppressors, and he insisted, when the skins were assigned, that the owner of two head of cattle should have but one skin, but the owner of one head should receive two skins, in correspondence to the method pursued in assigning the work. For the use of the ferry, a traveller had to pay four zuz, but if he waded through the water, he had to pay eight zuz.

The cruelty of the Sodomites went still further. Lot had a daughter, Paltit, so named because she had been born to him shortly after he escaped captivity through the help of Abraham. Paltit lived in Sodom, where she had married. Once a beggar came to town, and the court issued a proclamation that none should give him anything to eat, in order that he might die of starvation. But Paltit had pity upon the unfortunate wretch, and every day when she went to the well to draw water, she supplied him with a piece of bread, which she hid in her water pitcher. The inhabitants of the two sinful cities, Sodom and Gomorrah, could not understand why the beggar did not perish, and they suspected that some one was giving him food in secret. Three men concealed themselves near the beggar, and caught Paltit in the act of giving him something to eat. She had to pay for her humanity with death; she was burnt upon a pyre.

The people of Admah were no better than those of Sodom. Once a stranger came to Admah, intending to stay overnight and continue his journey the next morning. The daughter of a rich man met the stranger, and gave him water to drink and bread to eat at his request. When the people of Admah heard of this infraction of the law of the land, they seized the girl and arraigned her before the judge, who condemned her to death. The people smeared her with honey from top to toe, and exposed her where bees would be attracted to her. The insects stung her to death, and the callous people paid no heed to her heartrending cries. Then it was that God resolved upon the destruction of these sinners.

-The Legends of the Jews By Louis Ginzberg

 

 

19:6  And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him,

19:7  And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly.

19:8  Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof.

19:9  And they said, Stand back. And they said again, This one fellow came in to sojourn, and he will needs be a judge: now will we deal worse with thee, than with them. And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and came near to break the door.

In the Legends of the Jews, Louis Ginzberg writes that this mob was caused by Lot’s wife

 

“The angels, who had accepted Abraham’s hospitality without delay, first refused to comply with Lot’s request, for it is a rule of good breeding to show reluctance when an ordinary man invites one, but to accept the invitation of a great man at once. Lot, however, was insistent, and carried them into his house by main force. At home he had to overcome the opposition of his wife, for she said, “If the inhabitants of Sodom hear of this, they will slay thee.”

Lot divided his dwelling in two parts, one for himself and his guests, the other for his wife, so that, if aught happened, his wife would be spared. Nevertheless it was she who betrayed him. She went to a neighbor and borrowed some salt, and to the question, whether she could not have supplied herself with salt during daylight hours, she replied, “We had enough salt, until some guests came to us; for them we needed more.” In this way the presence of strangers was bruited abroad in the city.

In the beginning the angels were inclined to hearken to the petition of Lot in behalf of the sinners, but when all the people of the city, big and little, crowded around the house of Lot with the purpose of committing a monstrous crime, the angels warded off his prayers, saying, “Hitherto thou couldst intercede for them, but now no longer.” It was not the first time that the inhabitants of Sodom wanted to perpetrate a crime of this sort. They had made a law some time before that all strangers were to be treated in this horrible way. Lot, who was appointed chief judge on the very day of the angels’ coming, tried to induce the people to desist from their purpose, saying to them, “My brethren, the generation of the deluge was extirpated in consequence of such sins as you desire to commit, and you would revert to them?” But they replied: “Back! And though Abraham himself came hither, we should have no consideration for him. Is it possible that thou wouldst set aside a law which thy predecessors administered?”

Even Lot’s moral sense was no better than it should have been. It is the duty of a man to venture his life for the honor of his wife and his daughters, but Lot was ready to sacrifice the honor of his daughters, wherefor he was punished severely later on.”

-The Legends of the Jews By Louis Ginzberg

 

 

 

There are a few tragic facts to look at in the life of Lot.

  1. He moves into Sodom and eventually Sodom moves into him.
  2. His family suffers from his need for prosperity
  3. His own morals become carnalized
  4. He looses his wife and all but two daughters in the destruction of the city
  5. He unknowingly becomes the father of two of the worst and most despicable enemies of Israel

 

 

 

19:10  But the men put forth their hand, and pulled Lot into the house to them, and shut to the door.

19:11  And they smote the men that were at the door of the house with blindness, both small and great: so that they wearied themselves to find the door.

 

 

What can be claimed as the cause for this calamity in Lot’s life?

 

  1. 1. Is it the type of example that Abraham shows at first as he tries to find his own way?

Our children and our younger loved ones are always watching. It has been said that sometimes the only Bible that people will read is you in your walk. We are to be ready at all times, we are to be instant in and out of season. We must be ready in all ways and situations to be considered blameless as much as we can help it because you never know who is looking

 

  1. 2. Was Lot being a people pleaser?

Was he following the Lord only when he was with Abraham. Not that he was lying but that Abraham had become a crutch for Lot to the point where he did not know where he was with the Lord and he did not know how to act on his own. Sometimes we can rely on someone or a group more than we should and we soon become so reliant on them that we don’t know how to function on our own. We please only man when we act this way

 

Lot is called just lot. He is therefore referred to as a believer.

He can be a representative of what happens when the law of the flesh comes back to rear its ugly head. He lived in a desperately wicked place. A place full of degenerate sin and occupants. So much so that God could not allow it to continue and He destroys it

 

Now Peter states that Lot was a righteous man who was vexed by the unlawful deeds of the people of Sodom.

 

2 Peter 2:6-8

6And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly;

7And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked:

8(For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;)

 

What we need to learn from this is that prosperity, needs, or wants shouldn’t cause us to choose something. Circumstances should not cause us to choose either.

Only complete and total reliance upon God should lead our direction and where we go and live for him. He might not be calling us to go to that neighborhood just because something has opened up for us. Sometimes we need to seek the Lord’s will regardless of circumstances, wants, or situations.

The outcome will decide whether we become just people or just…..people

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About Clint Rodgers

I am a father of 2 wonderful children and the husband of a beautiful woman who has taught me more about compassion for goofballs than I could have ever learned. I have know Jesus for many years but about 5 years ago I truly met Him and now I do my best to follow Him as I walk in this world
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