Today’s Bible Reading – Genesis 19 & 20 and Matthew 10
I think we can assume it is universally known that Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed by fire from heaven for their wickedness. In Genesis 19:1, we read that Lot was sitting in the gateway of the city. Historically, important people, like city elders, would sit in the gateway of a city to judge between parties in a dispute, or businessmen would congregate there to transact business.
2 Peter 2:7 tells us that Lot was a righteous man. And yet, there he was sitting at the gate of a very wicked city. This suggests to me that he was assimilating into the wicked city. I think Lot’s decline started in Genesis 13, when Lot and Abraham had to separate because the land couldn’t support all their flocks and herds. Lot greedily chose to live in the lush fertile valley near Sodom, and left the barren, rocky heights for Abraham to graze his flocks. In Genesis 13:12, Lot pitched his tent toward Sodom. In Genesis 14:12, he lived in Sodom, here, in Genesis 19:1, he was sitting in the gateway of the city, easing his way into assimilating into the sinful city.
Even though Lot was a righteous man, he apparently didn’t exert much Godly influence over the locals. In Genesis 18:32, God said He would spare the city if only 10 righteous were found there. As it was, only Lot was considered righteous. Not only did he not convert others in the city, he couldn’t even convince his own future sons-in-law to leave the city with him. (And arguably, he didn’t have much positive influence over his own daughters. Read Genesis 19:30-38 as proof.)
Despite Lot’s poor judgment in choosing where to live, God was very merciful to Lot by sending two angels to lead Lot and his family out of the city before sending judgement. Once they were clear of the city, God rained down fire and burning sulfur on the cities of the plain, and everything and everyone was destroyed. Everything Lot had owned, everything he had worked for literally went up in smoke. Unfortunately, Lot’s wife looked back, presumably longing for what she had left behind. She died as a result of this.
We’re told in 2 Peter 2:6, “… he (GOD) condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah by burning them to ashes, and made them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly…” This story in Genesis 19 is an example of what will happen when Jesus returns, when He will save the righteous, and destroy the wicked by fire.
In Luke 17, Jesus is talking about conditions before the second coming of Christ. Luke 17: 28-32 says, “It was the same in the days of Lot. People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building. But the day Lot left Sodom, fire and sulfur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all. It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed. On that day, no one who is on the roof of his house with his goods inside should go down to get them. Likewise, no one in the field should go back for anything. Remember Lot’s wife.”
I think there are several applications for us.
First, if you don’t have a relationship with the Lord, it’s imperative you fix that right now. Isaiah 55:6-7 says, “Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake their ways and the unrighteous their thoughts. Let them turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on them, and to our God, for he will freely pardon.”
Second, If you do have a relationship with the Lord, continuously work on strengthening that relationship with the Lord. Especially since we don’t know when Jesus will return and we don’t know when we will die. We should live in such a way that we would always be ready to give an account for our lives. 2 Corinthians 5:10 reminds us: “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each of us may receive what is due us for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.”
Next, we should all carefully choose the situations in which we find ourselves, and seriously consider whether we are being conformed to the patterns of the sinful people around us, or if we’re influencing others for the Lord.
Finally, we should not become too attached to the world or anything in it.
1 John 2:15 says, “Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them.”
I’ll close by challenging you to follow Jesus’ instruction in Matthew 6:33, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”
Follow the 2021 SeekGrowLove.com Bible reading plan to read the Bible in a year – with an Old Testament and a New Testament/Psalms/Proverbs reading each day. Together let’s Seek God, Grow spiritually and Love Him and others more and more!