Summary: Here's a sermon on the atomic bombs dropped on Japan and the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.
Sodom, Gomorrah and Japan
23 The sun had risen upon the earth when Lot entered Zoar.
24Then the LORD rained brimstone and fire on Sodom and Gomorrah, from the LORD out of the heavens.
25So He overthrew those cities, all the plain, all the inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the ground.
A major event in the history of the earth
happened exactly 70 years ago today.
On August 9th, 1945 an atomic bomb
was dropped on the city of Nagasaki, Japan.
Called "Fat Man," at 11:02 a.m. it exploded at 1,650 feet
with a force of 22,000 tons of TNT.
It destroyed enemy war production facilities,
the Mitsubishi's Urakami steel works and a nearby torpedo plant.
70,000 people lost their lives in Nagasaki due to the bombing.
A total of 140,000 died within the next five years.
This was the second atomic bomb dropped on Japan.
The first bomb hit the city of Hiroshima on August 6, 1945.
In that blast, thousands of Japanese people were also killed.
Japanese forces surrendered to the Allies on August 15, 1945
only 6 days after Nagasaki and 9 after Hiroshima.
There are many people today who criticize those bombings.
They say it was wrong to use such deadly force
against innocent people.
Many others stand firm in their belief that the use of the bombs
saved a million or more lives.
American military forces in the Pacific
were moving toward an eventual invasion of Japan.
American and Japanese soldiers, and Japanese civilians
would have been lost had an invasion proven necessary.
Those who think it was wrong
seem to forget the Japanese surprise attack of Pearl Harbor
where thousands of American were killed.
They ignore the fact that millions of other people were killed
as Japan attempted to spread their empire in the Pacific region.
Japan was waging an evil war against humanity.
The destruction of 2 cities also happened about 3, 900 years ago.
Today's Bible passage in Genesis chapter 19
is about the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.
President Harry Truman was criticized for issuing the order
to use the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Likewise, many people question God's destruction
of Sodom and Gomorrah.
They say, "What kind of God would destroy those cities?"
Today's we're going to find out more about God.
So Turn in your Bibles to Genesis chapter 18.
God tells Abraham
that He is about to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah.
Look at Verse 23.
And Abraham came near and said, "Would You also destroy the righteous with the wicked?
Abraham is alarmed.
He wonders why God would kill the wicked and the righteous.
Is God unable to distinguish
between those who deserve to be punished
and those who don't?
What kind of God would destroy these cities?
What kind of God would do this?
These are Abraham's concerns as he pleads with God.
We find the answer as the story unfolds.
The answer we find is that God is fair, just and merciful.
In verses 16 to 33 of chapter 18, we find that God is a fair judge.
Point #1. God is a Fair Judge
20 And the LORD said, "Because the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grave, 21 I will go down now and see whether they have done altogether according to the outcry against it that has come to Me; and if not, I will know."
Obviously God does not need to go down and investigate,
but He wants to be seen by Abraham as doing the right thing.
A fair judge weighs the evidence.
Let's read on beginning at Verse 24.
Abraham speaks first.
24 Suppose there were fifty righteous within the city; would You also destroy the place and not spare it for the fifty righteous that were in it? 25 Far be it from You to do such a thing as this, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous should be as the wicked; far be it from You! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?" 26 So the LORD said, "If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes." 27 Then Abraham answered and said, "Indeed now, I who am but dust and ashes have taken it upon myself to speak to the Lord: 28 Suppose there were five less than the fifty righteous; would You destroy all of the city for lack of five?" So He said, "If I find there forty-five, I will not destroy it." 29 And he spoke to Him yet again and said, "Suppose there should be forty found there?" So He said, "I will not do it for the sake of forty." 30 Then he said, "Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak: Suppose thirty should be found there?" So He said, "I will not do it if I find thirty there." 31 And he said, "Indeed now, I have taken it upon myself to speak to the Lord: Suppose twenty should be found there?" So He said, "I will not destroy it for the sake of twenty." 32 Then he said, "Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak but once more: Suppose ten should be found there?" And He said, "I will not destroy it for the sake of ten." 33 So the LORD went His way as soon as He had finished speaking with Abraham; and Abraham returned to his place.