Genesis 19 is the account of Sodom and Gomorrah’s destruction. Prior to the destruction, Abraham asks God to spare the cities, and after much deliberation on Abraham’s part, God agrees to spare it if ten righteous people can be found in it. Lot, Abraham’s nephew, lives in Sodom with his wife and two daughters.
After reading Genesis 19 in the New Living Translation, and reviewing Matthew Henry’s interpretation of the chapter, I was struck with several thoughts.
- Why would God spare Lot?
- How could Lot offer his daughters to the angry mob of men looking to have sex with the angels?
- How could Lot’s daughters sleep with their father?
Lot reminded me of a lukewarm Christian—someone who knows the Word, has experienced or witnessed God’s work, but lives life by his or her own strength. Christians who live this way try to fix things themselves instead of relying on God to fix it. This is what it looks like Lot was doing when he offered to throw his daughters out to the angry mob. When the angels finally decide to destroy the place, Lot seems to procrastinate leaving. The angels had to physically drag him out of the place and ordered him to take refuge in the mountains, to which Lot had the nerve to ask for asylum in a close-by town of Zoar, instead. For fear of his life in Zoar, Lot takes his daughters to the mountains anyway. While there, the daughters intoxicate their father, Lot, and impregnate themselves.
Isn’t it amazing how God included the story of Lot in the Bible? Now we can look at this story and say, “Wow, Lot (and his daughters) were real scum bags!” We can get disgusted with Lot’s actions and think, “How could he have been so dumb?” But, how are we different from Lot? Don’t we live each day through God’s grace? If we are truly honest with ourselves, we are all scum bags. We see in Genesis 16:2 and Genesis 20:2 that even Abraham (Abram) was a scum bag (and for that matter, so were Sari and Hagar)!
Genesis 19 shows us that no one is perfect, we all mess up, and we are nothing without God. I stopped looking at Lot and his faults and started to look at my own—how have I fallen short? How am I like a scum bag? If we do not look within ourselves, then we can never ask God to forgive us. How can we ask for forgiveness if we do not know what we did wrong? How can God change us if we are blind to our faults? I thank God that He saved Lot even though he did not deserve it, because it shows me that He can do the same for me; and I know that God can change me from the scum bag that I am to the righteous person that only He can create (Romans 2:29). He is an awesome God!
Copyright © 2009 M. Teresa Trascritti