And Abram went up out of Egypt, he, and his wife, and all that he had, and Lot with him, into the south. And Abram was very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold. And he went on his journeys from the south even to Bethel, unto the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Bethel and Hai; Unto the place of the altar, which he had made there at the first: and there Abram called on the name of the Lord.
And Lot also, which went with Abram, had flocks, and herds, and tents. And the land was not able to bear them, that they might dwell together: for their substance was great, so that they could not dwell together. And there was a strife between the herdmen of Abram's cattle and the herdmen of Lot's cattle: and the Canaanite and the Perizzite dwelled then in the land. And Abram said unto Lot, Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between me and thee, and between my herdmen and thy herdmen; for we be brethren. Is not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left. And Lot lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered every where, before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, even as the garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt, as thou comest unto Zoar. Then Lot chose him all the plain of Jordan; and Lot journeyed east: and they separated themselves the one from the other. Abram dwelled in the land of Canaan, and Lot dwelled in the cities of the plain, and pitched his tent toward Sodom. But the men of Sodom were wicked and sinners before the Lord exceedingly. (KJV) Gen 13:1-13
In the previous chapter Abraham had gone to Egypt, because there was a famine in the land that had been promised to him by Yahweh! It was a very natural decision, for a man concerned about his family's welfare. But therein lies the error! Making natural decisions in major situations without consulting or seeking the will of God! Major situations come up constantly. Marriage, family, homes, transactions, careers, education, are just a few! The Bible says: Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Proverbs 3:5-6 KJV
Abraham because of his natural choice however, had to engage in very compromising arrangements, in order to secure and protect his own skin. In the process he endangered his heritage, the chastity and safety of his wife, Sarah, and the general future of the world!
Thanks to God's grace, Abraham was able to get back on track. He was allowed to leave Egypt in safety, and with great wealth. However, he also took some of Egypt back with him, a sad consequence of his misadventure! An Egyptian maid named Hagar came back with his wife. We know how that ended!
Also the sophistry and culture of Egypt most likely brought back powerful memories of Ur to his immediate relatives, Lot and his family. The impact of Egypt reminded Lot's family of what they had left and dissatisfaction stepped in. It spilled over and influenced some decisions that had tragic consequences for Lot and his family!
Abraham's first action on exiting Egypt was to return to the altar at Bethel, that he had set up on entering Canaan. There he called on the Name of God! There he renewed his covenant with God, and there he surrendered to God's will. But while Abraham was renewing his commitment and consecration to the LORD, dissension was developing elsewhere.
Roots of bitterness were springing up and the defiling process was spilling over to others! The Bible cautions us about these roots! Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled; 16 Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright. 17 For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears. Hebrews 12:15-17 KJV
Now the herdsmen of Abraham and Lot are striving over grazing rights?
How does Abraham resolve it?
He refuses to be drawn into a strife.
He looks for a peaceful solution.
He is willing to take second choice, even though he was senior and leader.
Remember he was the one with the vision, and he could afford to be patient.
God did not call him from one city to strive for position in a smaller city.
Abraham allowed Lot to choose, because Abraham did not have a lot to lose. We know Lot's choice!
And Lot lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered every where, before the LORD destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, even as the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt, as thou comest unto Zoar. Genesis 13:10 KJV
It is a very revealing verse with a very significant phrase " like the land of Egypt" from which they had just recently returned! How tempting. The presence of nearby Sodom was a lure to the family which had returned from Egypt with Abraham It would have been interesting to listen in on the conversations in Lot's tents!. No more wandering and adventuring and uncertainty. Let's check out the city. They're well organized and in touch with the times. No more wandering around with the old man, who seems to be out of his mind with no ambition! Why he even disowned his own wife to save his skin! All he does is wander around with no proper roots, no stability! Picture the debate!
We all know how the story ended! Then Lot chose him all the plain of Jordan; and Lot journeyed east: and they separated themselves the one from the other. 12 Abram dwelled in the land of Canaan, and Lot dwelled in the cities of the plain, and pitched his tent toward Sodom. 13 But the men of Sodom were wicked and sinners before the LORD exceedingly. Genesis 13:11-13 KJV
Towards what are we pitching our tents? Where are we casting our eyes?
The Bible describes the sins of Sodom: Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. Ezekiel 16:49 KJV
Oh! Lot had it good at the beginning! All seemed well. He prospered and was even found sitting in the city gates! Lot had gotten caught up in the city politics. Maybe he has big dreams of bringing change! Meanwhile his children went their own way.
Lot's choice was based on physical needs and outward appearances, and his choice resulted in the loss of his family, fortune and faith.
In Genesis 14, when Sodom was invaded and Lot made captive, Abraham responded quickly, saving him and his family
What did Lot do after this? He went right back into Sodom! No doubt he was a just man as Peter states, but he either did not see the warning signs, or simply chose to ignore them! Or maybe he was weak willed, and chose to let things lie as they were. Or maybe the secular influence was much too great for him who was now sitting in the city gates! We are not told of the internal affairs of his family. We can however make some reasonable deductions based on the reactions to Lot's appeal to his family, after the angel's warnings!
1. Lot's offer of his daughters to the perverts is strong testimony to his loss of moral backbone, if he ever had one!
And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly. 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. Genesis 19:7-8 KJV
2. His sons-in-law laughed at him when he tried to warn them, indicating his spiritual ineffectiveness!
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 19:14 KJV
3. All he had left was himself, his wife and two unmarried daughters! And even that not for long!
And when the morning arose, then the angels hastened Lot, saying, Arise, take thy wife, and thy two daughters, which are here; lest thou be consumed in the iniquity of the city. 16 And while he lingered, the men laid hold upon his hand, and upon the hand of his wife, and upon the hand of his two daughters; the LORD being merciful unto him: and they brought him forth, and set him without the city. Genesis 19:15-16 KJV
Lot lingered! It's hard to see all that you have worked and labored so hard for, about to go up in smoke! All those years when he thought he was doing the right thing for his family, but it was all his plans, and God was never in it! He associated with a godly man, but that man did not seem very progressive, so it was time to move on! Sodom's attractive appearance influenced him. His not so godly family influenced him. Now he had to leave it all!
"The soundness of a vessel is not seen when it is empty, but when it is filled with water, then we shall see whether it will leak or not." (Thomas Manton.)
"It is in our prosperity that we are tested. Men are not fully discovered to themselves till they are tried by fullness of success. Praise finds out the leak of pride, wealth reveals the flaw of selfishness, and learning discovers the leak of unbelief. David’s besetting sin was little seen in the tracks of the wild goats, but it became conspicuous upon the terraces of his palace. Success is the crucible of character. Hence the prosperity which some welcome as an unmixed favour may far more rightly be regarded as an intense form of test." (C. H. Spurgeon.)
4. Lot next loses his wife
But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt. Genesis 19:26 KJV
5. Then comes the final, pitifully sordid and disgraceful end of a man, who could have done much better had he waited on the Lord, and paid more attention to the ways of the Lord. Even his death is not noted!
It's interesting to note that God revealed to Abraham the impending judgment on Sodom but Lot did not know!
It is also important to notice that Lot was only spared because of Abraham's intercession.
Who can forget how Abraham pleaded and reasoned before Yahweh? It is very obvious that even though Lot had departed and separated himself from Abraham, Lot was still very much in Abraham's heart and the prayer that went up was calculated based on Abraham's knowledge of Lot's household. This grace was displayed to Lot even while he yet delayed in Sodom looking on all he had to leave behind.
We are told the reason for Abraham's privileged knowledge:
For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him. (KJV) Gen 18:19
Life in the United State of America is not getting better for Christians! There is a serious, calculated, and perverted attack on conservative Christian values! Christians are being made to look like extremists, who refuse to play with the rest! Passions and animosities are slowly being stirred up and ignited against Christians by the inflammatory words of politicians and ungodly leaders!
When called to take a stand for God, where will we be? How will we respond? Will we continue to float along with others? Will we continue supporting godless men and women, whose agenda is to bring this nation into a state of godlessness and perversion? Where the daily murder of innocent lives is called freedom of choice? Where perverts are given more and more rights, while freedom is constantly taken away from those who uphold the Word of God as the rule of life? Where all opposition to ungodliness, and the ability to oppose the ungodly, is being slowly stifled out of the constitution?
Flirting with Sodom is never a good thing!
As the title says: SODOM'S SUBTLE SEDUCTIONS SLOWLY SABOTAGES SAINTLY STANDARDS!
They will sabotage those standards until preachers of righteousness will be looked upon distastefully as those who are fools, and enemies of the State!
We are in a position to either take the route of Lot or the path of Abraham. Both were righteous men but we see clearly where the power resided. Abraham's prayer moved the hand of God while Lot could not even save his own family. It is so important that we do not forget Who we serve and how great He is! It is so important to know that we can rely on him as we trust in him and not the arm of flesh! What can we do? We can do what godly men and women in every generation did! We can only look to God and trust in Him to: Give us help from trouble: for vain is the help of man. Psalms 60:11 KJV
What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:31-39 KJV