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“ And the men said unto Lot, Hast thou here any
besides? son in law, and thy sons, and thy daughters, and whatsoever thou hast in the
city, bring them out of this place : “For we will destroy this place, because the cry
of them is waxen great before the face of the Lord ; and the Lord hath sent us to destroy
it. “ And Lot went out, and spake unto his sons in
law, which married his daughters, and said, Up, get you out of this place; for the Lord will destroy this city. But he seemed as one that mocked unto his sons in law." GENESIS XIX. 12-14.
The events connected with the history of Sodom and Gomorrah are pointed to in many parts of Scripture, as sources of much instruction, and of solemn warning.
The two chief ways in which they instruct us are told us in the Second Epistle of Peter, where he says, “the Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished.” (chap. 2. v. 9.) The punishment of the unjust is referred to in the
same chapter, “turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly.” The deliverance of the godly out of temptation is also referred to,“and delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked.”
We are to look at this history as a great model of the history of the last days of this world. Our Lord has said, “ As it was in the days of Lot, so shall it be in the days when the Son of Man shall be revealed."
And we seem in this history to have an example of three different classes of persons as that day shall come upon them.
First : There are those who shall be destroyed with the general destruction of the world, because they refused to hear the voice of warning-even as Lot's Sons-in-law.
Next, there is the case of those who seem to take warning, and seem to be escaping the condemnation of the rest of the world, but after all are destroyed-even as Lot's wife.
Thirdly, there is the case of those who shall be counted worthy to escape all these things, and to stand before the Lord-even as Lot was delivered.
The first of these is to occupy our attention in these present pages.
But, we cannot but remark first a little on Lot's position in these cities. Whence came he here? How comes it he stands alone amidst so much awful iniquity ? Surely there was blame here, on his part ? Now, if there was, we see the cause of his error in a point of his previous history. We remember, when he parted from Abraham, he chose his own situation. (Gen. xiii. 9. 10.) What guided him in his choice? Was it the hope of good company? There was none where he went. Was it that going where sinners were dwelling, he might act as a missionary among them ? We read not of such a reason. Seemingly, it was not God's glory, or his own soul's safety, nor that of his family that he sought, but rather his own temporal prosperity, “Lot lifted up his eyes,
and beheld all the plain of Jordan that it was well watered everywhere.... then Lot chose him all the plain of Jordan
...and Lot dwelled in the cities of the plain, and pitched his tent toward Sodom.” But, it is added, “the men of Sodom were wicked, and sinners before the Lord, exceedingly.” To this one choice must all Lot's future family and personal troubles (and they are many) be traced.
Can we be too much impressed with the importance with which one such act of choosing may be fraught ? To one such act of choosing for self, irrespectively of God, can many trace a thousand troubles they have had. He who chooses for himself without God, must enjoy what he has chosen without God. He who chooses this world's things without regard to the spiritual advantages or spiritual losses such things occasion, must expect to find much cause for regret, and often wish to have his choice over again. God will never suffer His own children to find peace and happiness in any place where he Has not placed them, in any path to which He has not pointed, in any possession which He has not given them. Such choices must lead to sorrow. Such temporal gains must bring spiritual losses. A man will thus often lose his best friends, as Lot lost the society of Abraham. He will stand on slippery ground, and hardly escape slipping aside, as Lot did not. He will often have great pain and grief from his relations, as Lot had. He will have constant cause of sorrow and vexation of spirit, as was the case with Lot. He will only just escape with his life, as Lot did.
But God, we must next observe, overruled this for His own glory. He glorified His grace in Lot's preservation. He justified His righteousness in Lot's testimony to the men of Sodom. And now The holy
Let us look now at the state of those to whom Lot gave the word of warning and advice. His own Sons-in-law were among the sinners of Sodom. As in the days of Noah, here were greatest evils from unholy, unequal alliances. How had Lot's daughters become united with such sinners ? Either from evil communications they had learned to love sin, or else they had persuaded themselves into a belief that they were not doing wrong in making such alliances. the worst consequences ensue. messengers that came to Lot were not acknowledged by these once members of his own family. When they left their father, they left his faith ; when they took their husbands, they took their creed.
Two angels came to the city at even. They were messengers of God sent to execute vengeance against God's enemies. Righteous Lot was the only one who looked kindly on these strangers, and, like Abraham, entertained them. The men of the city not only despised them, but sought to evil intreat them. Sinners are not content with shunning the light that condemns them, they would fain show their contempt for it, if they do not extinguish it. But they that came against the Lord's messengers were struck blind by the Lord. None