In Genesis chapter 19, we see the two men that were with Abraham (spoiler alert: they are angels) go down to Sodom. Lot (Abraham’s nephew) sees the men and offers for them men to stay at his house. After some persuading, they agree. This is where things get crazy!
All the men of the town surround Lot’s house at night and demand that the new men staying with Lot come out so they can “have their way with them”. Lot tried to talk with the men surrounding the house so that they wouldn’t try to mess with the angels, he even offered up his two virgin daughters to the men in place of the angels (somehow that’s less messed up?). Those dudes weren’t having it though, especially from a foreigner like Lot, so they tried to attack Lot and break down the door to get to the angels. Before they could do that, the angels opened the door, snatched Lot and locked him in the house, then blinded all the men that were trying to attack them.
After that, the angels tell Lot to take all of his family and get out of the city, because stuff’s about to get real! God sent the angels to destroy the city because the place is too evil to exist. Lot told his son-in-laws what was up and they thought he was joking, so they didn’t move. The angels said “forget them, Lot you and your wife and daughters need to go now.” Lot was still lollygagging (not rushing, clearly not motivated by the impending doom) so the angels grabbed him by the arm and took him and his wife and daughters outside of the city so they wouldn’t go down in the destruction. The angels told them to escape to the hills and don’t stop or look back.
Lot was freaked out and didn’t think he could make it to the hills, so he asked the angels if he could run to a small town in the middle of nowhere that was closer instead. The angels agreed, but told him to hurry because they couldn’t start destroying things until he was safe.
When the sun rose in the morning, Lot and his family arrived at Zoar ( the small town). When they arrived, God sent a rain of fire down on Sodom and Gomorrah and all the cities of the valley, destroying them. Lot’s wife decided to look back on the place they had escaped (despite the angels’ instructions) and was turned into a pillar of salt.
Abraham woke up and saw all the fire and smoke from his house and thought of Lot and God’s promise to rescue him.
Eventually Lot left Zoar with his two daughters and moved into a cave in the hills (the hills that he told the angels he didn’t want to live in). Lot was getting pretty old and his daughters were getting older too. The daughters felt their biological clocks ticking and since God had wiped out all of them men in the land, they came up with a plan to get their father drunk and sleep with him. Both daughters became pregnant, the older one with a son named Moab and the younger one with a son named Ben-Ammi. This is where the Moabites and the Ammonites came from.
There is A LOT that went on in this chapter. Firstly though, if some dudes show up at your house and blind a whole bunch of people, then tell you to leave your house before you get destroyed with everyone else, maybe listen to them. Secondly, if you do evil stuff you’re going to get destroyed – so maybe don’t do evil stuff? Third, rules are in place for a reason. If someone says, hey don’t do this or you will die, don’t be surprised if there are some massive consequences when you do the thing you weren’t supposed to do. And lastly, if you raise your kids around a whole bunch of crazy, don’t be surprised when they act crazy.
I think the main point of this chapter is to show two things. 1) that God keeps his word. He spared Lot’s life like He said He would and He destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah like He said He would. Everything He said He would do He did, so I think it’s safe to say that if He says He’s going to do something, He will. 2) actions have consequences. Being evil will consume you and get you destroyed. Being good could spare your life. And following directions will get you to safety.
God destroys the wicked places in our life for a reason. Sometimes we live somewhere (physically or metaphorically) that we are not meant to live in. Even though we may be a light in the dark place, if we weren’t assigned to be there, aren’t spreading our light (standing up to darkness) or if we are not connected to a source of light ourselves, we may be tempted to pick up some of the dark thought processes (ie offering the wicked men your daughters). When God destroys a place, he doesn’t want us to stop moving forward to our next place or to look back on the old place. He moved us out of there for a reason. He spared our life, so keep your eyes on the prize!
Be encouraged that He kept you from the destruction. You may not see the smoke or pillars of fire and He may have had to send angels to pull you out of there kicking and screaming, but the people who care for you (the Abrahams in your life who prayed that you would be spared) can see all of the smoke and know that you are safe.