Summary: In the conversation Abraham had with the Lord before the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, we see the compassion that both Abraham and God had for people.
Let’s Make A Deal
Genesis 18:16-33 (NLT)
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Intro: A man fell into a pit and couldn’t get himself out.
A subjective person came along and said, "I feel for you down there."
An objective person walked by and said, "It’s logical that someone would fall down there."
A Pharisee said, "Only bad people fall into pits."
A mathematician calculated how deep the pit was.
A news reporter wanted the exclusive story on the pit.
An IRS agent asked if he was paying taxes on the pit.
A self-pitying person said, "You haven’t seen anything until you’ve seen my pit."
A fire-and-brimstone preacher said, "You deserve your pit."
A Christian Scientist observed, "The pit is just in your mind."
A psychologist noted, "Your mother and father are to blame for your being in that pit."
A self-esteem therapist said, "Believe in yourself and you can get out of that pit."
An optimist said, "Things could be worse."
A pessimist claimed, "Things will get worse."
"Jesus, seeing the man, took him by the hand and lifted him out of the pit."
.Compassion, many people have it don’t they?
. Did you know that there are two different compassions?
. There is worldly compassion and there is Christian compassion.
. Worldly compassion is caring for people. For their health and welfare. Their needs physically and psychologically.
. Christian compassion is all of that plus the concern for their souls. Christians are called to be worldly compassionate people who also care for people’s souls and their eternity.
. The church has fallen into the model of worldly compassionate people. We strive to meet the physical needs of people while many times neglecting the spiritual needs.
. We make the statement that people don’t care how much we know until they know how much we care.
. That is a true statement but many times we stop right there. We show compassion for their needs but never address their spiritual needs.
. Folks we are called to be compassionate, to love others unconditionally. That’s what God’s love is. An unconditional love. It seems that many have confined this love to a physical concept and neglected the spiritual.
. Not only must we have a heart for people, we must have a heart for peoples souls.
. We are back in Genesis this morning and we are still learning about Abraham and his relationship to and with God.
. It has been about a month since we have looked at Abraham and Sarah so let me bring us up to date here in chapter 18.
. The Lord and two angels have visited Abraham and Sarah and have again confirmed the covenant that God had made with Abraham that he would be the father of a mighty nation.
. That nation will become known as the Jewish nation.
. They have dined with Abraham and had fellowshipped together and they Lord is about to leave and we get to our scripture.
. Many times when we explore this scripture we see it as God’s righteous judgment on the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.
. If we look a little closer though, we also see a man with a heart for souls. A man with a missionary heart.
. We will see a man who cared about people that nobody else would care about.
. A man who was looking for any way he could to save the people.
. A man with a heart for souls.
. Folks, we need to model our Christian life and heart by how Abraham deals with the Lord.
. The first thing we see is the relationship that Abraham had with God.
. In order to have a heart for souls, we must first have:
. A Relationship With God.
Look at 18:16-23
16Then the men got up from their meal and looked out toward Sodom. As they left, Abraham went with them to send them on their way.
17“Should I hide my plan from Abraham?” the LORD asked.
18“For Abraham will certainly become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth will be blessed through him.
19I have singled him out so that he will direct his sons and their families to keep the way of the LORD by doing what is right and just. Then I will do for Abraham all that I have promised.”
20So the LORD told Abraham, “I have heard a great outcry from Sodom and Gomorrah, because their sin is so flagrant.
21I am going down to see if their actions are as wicked as I have heard. If not, I want to know.”
22The other men turned and headed toward Sodom, but the LORD remained with Abraham.
23Abraham approached him and said, “Will you sweep away both the righteous and the wicked?