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Posts Tagged ‘Sodom’

On any given day, scan the news, and look closely at what you find – supposedly ‘normal’ people doing extremely evil things.  Take today, for example, a child sex ring has been exposed and, so called, normal people are found out to be leading double lives and the parents of the children are horrified.  Or maybe the story of the soldier in Iraq who, with his friends, killed an Iraqi family and raped and killed their daughter.  I could go on and on and on.  And all of us would be horrified.  There is so much evil lurking in the shadows, lurking in the hearts of men and women, that needs to be brought out into the light.

But here is the thought, we are quick to point the finger, but the truth be known, each one of us is inherently wicked.  Each one of us has the potential within us to be the most horrenously wicked man or woman on this earth.  Look at the atrosities of war – normal people become monsters!

It is not until we come to the fact that it is not everyone else who has a problem but we are all part of the problem. Jesus highlighted our sin condition.  He said “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not murder,  and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother  will be subject to judgment.” (NIV) [Matt 5:21-22]  And here, Jesus says:  “You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery.’   But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.” (NIV) [Matt 5:27-30]

We(ie: the human race) are the problem!  We all need Jesus to transform us from the inside out.  There is no other solution to our human condition.  Each one of us needs to come to the place of acknowledging our sinful condition and repenting and inviting Jesus to come into our lives and transform our very beings, from the inside out, by His Spirit.  There is no other way!

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The human condition(ie: the sin condition) and the human heart

Relevent Verses:
Jer 17:9
“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?” (NKJV)
Prov 21:2
“Every way of a man is right in his own eyes”… (NKJV)
Prov 14:12
“There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.” (NKJV)
Prov 3:5
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding;” (NKJV)
Prov 28:26
“He who trusts in his own heart is a fool,” (NKJV)
Matthew 15:19
“For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander.” [ESV]

The below are comments from blogger Binu Abraham (he says it very well):

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These verses don’t exactly paint a picture of the type of heart that most people tell us to listen to, does it? That’s because “the heart” that we’re told to listen to is not the type of heart that we actually have. Our heart is sinful; it’s often self-centered, deceiving, and the root of evil. And yet many of us use this very heart in making decisions and finding direction in life. Listen to what Spurgeon has to say about the heart:

“There have been men who have asserted that sins are merely accidents of man’s position. But the Savior says they come out of his heart. Some have affirmed that they are mistakes of his judgment—that the social system bears so harshly at certain points that men can scarcely do otherwise than offend—for their judgment misleads them. The Savior, however, traces these offenses not to the head and its mistaken judgments, but to the heart and its unholy affections. He plainly tells us that the part of human nature which yields such poisonous fruit is not a bough which may be sawn off, a limb which may be cut away—but the very core and substance of the man—his heart.”

The heart is wicked, but so many of us live according to it. David confesses “surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.” The heart, the core of who we are, has always been sinful and needs to be transformed. This can only be accomplished by trusting in Jesus, the sinless one, to transform us from the inside out. Our heart needs to be broken and reshaped to reflect the character of Jesus. This process begins at the moment we are born-again through faith, and it continues as we are in fellowship with Him and dying to ourselves – daily.

David pleads: “create in me a clean heart, O God…” and that needs to be our prayer as well. We need to understand, as David did, that such change can only happen when God works in and through our lives.

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Don’t Look Back!

I have a heap more to say about Lot and his family but there is the chance that I could get ‘blogged’ down 🙂 . I think it’s time to move on but… There is one last verse the Lord has been speaking to me about in Genesis 19 and that is verse 26:

Genesis 19:26
26 But Lot’s wife looked back, and she became a pillar of salt.

“But Lot’s wife LOOKED BACK” Have you ever seen one of those romantic moments in a movie where the women (or the man) is walking away from the their partner or friend and they have LOOKED BACK with fondness. Well, this is what came to mind when I read this verse. I know there are issues with disobedience here with Lot’s wife but I reckon, at least for myself, there is a Spiritual message here.

Lot and his family were being saved by God’s grace out of a place of GREAT SIN. Can you now see the significance? We are saved and being saved by the grace of God out of a place of GREAT SIN. It’s very important that we do not look back or revisit on our old sinful life with any fondness. What happens when you look back when you are traveling forwards? You stumble! Satan always has, and always will, whisper in our ear and say “LOOK BACK, you’re missing out on something. God hasn’t got your best interests in mind”

In fact, you notice, Lot and his family were RUNNING from that place of GREAT SIN to the place sanctuary and salvation. Likewise, let us RUN towards our place of sanctuary and salvation, ie: to our Heavenly Father , with all haste. Not looking back, but looking forward towards the One who saves.

Hebrews 12:1-2
12:1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus , the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. NIV

Father, you alone are the One who saves! Thank you for your Son Jesus through whom I have sanctuary and salvation. Help me run towards you and never look back again, in Jesus name, Amen

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In part 3 I will be looking at the remaining verses in Genesis Chapter 19 ie: verses 14-38. However, what has been continually running through the back of my mind is verse 8 (that I haven’t commented on yet) where Lot says to the crowd of men: Genesis 19:8Look, I have two daughters who have never slept with a man. Let me bring them out to you, and you can do what you like with them. But don’t do anything to these men, for they have come under the protection of my roof.” So let’s read the remainder of chapter 19 with that in the back of our minds and see if there is anything else FAULTY with Lot and his family.

Genesis 19:14-38
14 So Lot went out and spoke to his sons-in-law, who were pledged to marry his daughters. He said, “Hurry and get out of this place, because the LORD is about to destroy the city!” But his sons-in-law thought he was joking.
15 With the coming of dawn, the angels urged Lot, saying, “Hurry! Take your wife and your two daughters who are here, or you will be swept away when the city is punished.”
16 When he hesitated, the men grasped his hand and the hands of his wife and of his two daughters and led them safely out of the city, for the LORD was merciful to them. 17 As soon as they had brought them out, one of them said, “Flee for your lives! Don’t look back, and don’t stop anywhere in the plain! Flee to the mountains or you will be swept away!”
18 But Lot said to them, “No, my lords, please! 19 Your servant has found favor in your eyes, and you have shown great kindness to me in sparing my life. But I can’t flee to the mountains; this disaster will overtake me, and I’ll die. 20 Look, here is a town near enough to run to, and it is small. Let me flee to it — it is very small, isn’t it? Then my life will be spared.”
21 He said to him, “Very well, I will grant this request too; I will not overthrow the town you speak of. 22 But flee there quickly, because I cannot do anything until you reach it.” (That is why the town was called Zoar.)
23 By the time Lot reached Zoar, the sun had risen over the land. 24 Then the LORD rained down burning sulfur on Sodom and Gomorrah — from the LORD out of the heavens. 25 Thus he overthrew those cities and the entire plain, including all those living in the cities — and also the vegetation in the land. 26 But Lot’s wife looked back, and she became a pillar of salt.
27 Early the next morning Abraham got up and returned to the place where he had stood before the LORD. 28 He looked down toward Sodom and Gomorrah, toward all the land of the plain, and he saw dense smoke rising from the land, like smoke from a furnace.
29 So when God destroyed the cities of the plain, he remembered Abraham, and he brought Lot out of the catastrophe that overthrew the cities where Lot had lived.
30 Lot and his two daughters left Zoar and settled in the mountains, for he was afraid to stay in Zoar. He and his two daughters lived in a cave. 31 One day the older daughter said to the younger, “Our father is old, and there is no man around here to lie with us, as is the custom all over the earth. 32 Let’s get our father to drink wine and then lie with him and preserve our family line through our father.”
33 That night they got their father to drink wine, and the older daughter went in and lay with him. He was not aware of it when she lay down or when she got up.
34 The next day the older daughter said to the younger, “Last night I lay with my father. Let’s get him to drink wine again tonight, and you go in and lie with him so we can preserve our family line through our father.” 35 So they got their father to drink wine that night also, and the younger daughter went and lay with him. Again he was not aware of it when she lay down or when she got up.
36 So both of Lot’s daughters became pregnant by their father. 37 The older daughter had a son, and she named him Moab; he is the father of the Moabites of today. 38 The younger daughter also had a son, and she named him Ben-Ammi; he is the father of the Ammonites of today.
NIV

So, in the rest of this passage, did you notice anything else FAULTY with Lot and his family? Of course, verses 32 to 36 starting off with “Let’s get our father to drink wine and then lie with him”. The daughters aim was to “preserve their family line” but there means was terribly FAULTY! Just like with Lot in verse 8, his aim was to protect the angels but HIS means was terribly FAULTY!

Now, you have to ask yourself, this is the righteous family that God saved from Sodom and Gomorrah, what’s going on here??? Well, I believe, in both cases, that Lot and his family didn’t get away unscathed in their living in Sodom and Gomorrah. In both cases there was honourable intentions but their application was terribly tainted by the culture.

OK, so here is what the Lord is saying to me in these verses. God saved me out of this sinful world. How have I been tainted by the culture? Like Lot and his family, do I not really notice my sinful ways because I am so entrenched in the culture and numbed by the culture? Are my ways actually very offensive to Him and I don’t even realise it? Am I salt and light in this world or do I have great big blind patches and I am actually wearing this sinful and FAULTY culture?

Lord, search me and remove the things that are unclean within me. Give me eyes to see the stuff that is FAULTY within me so that I can repent and truely be righteous and holy in your sight and salt and light to the world, in Jesus name, Amen.

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Why did God destroy Sodom and Gomorrah? continued…

THE OUTCRY!

In Genesis 19:13 the angels said:
“The outcry to the LORD against its people is so great that he has sent us to destroy it.” NIV

In Genesis 18:20 the Lord said:
“The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous NIV

The OUTCRY from whom?

Well, first let’s look at what sort of an outcry it is and then maybe we can deduce who. Looking at Genesis 19:13 & Genesis 18:20 there was a GREAT outcry AGAINST the people of Sodom and Gomorrah. Who would be GREATLY AGAINST the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah?

Earlier in Genesis chapter 4 there was a similar outcry in a different setting. Cain had just killed his brother Abel and the Lord had heard the outcry. In Genesis 4:10 the LORD said to Cain, What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground. NIV Abel’s blood was crying out or OUTCRYING from the ground. In both Genesis 4 and Genesis 18 & 19 there was a righteous OUTCRYING. In Genesis 4 the righteous OUTCRYING was from the blood of Abel.

2 Peter 2:7-8 gives us another clue as to who was OUTCRYING against Sodom and Gomorrah. In 2 Peter 2:7-8 the Bible says: 7 and if he rescued Lot, a righteous man, who was distressed by the filthy lives of lawless men 8(for that righteous man, living among them day after day, was tormented in his righteous soul by the lawless deeds he saw and heard)— NIV. From this, I believe, in Genesis 18 & 19, the GREAT OUTCRYING AGAINST Sodom and Gomorrah was from Lot.

Thought:
How different is the culture of Lot’s day to the culture of our day? Are we ‘tormented in our righteous souls by the lawless deeds of men’ or have we been seduced into embracing parts of this present culture? In other words, can we see through this present culture that we live in, or have we accepted a compromised life and sin and/or complacency and/or apathy has crept in? These questions aren’t pointing the finger. I can see a numbing of my soul and spirit to the sin of this world. I want to explore this further in Part 3.

(to be continued)

Blessings

Steve

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The Lord has had me thinking and praying about Genesis 19 for a number of weeks now. Do you ever spend an extended period of time on just one passage? – I’d highly recommend it! Anyways, here’s some of the passage. I’ve rated this M for Mature audiences…

Genesis 19
19:1 The two angels arrived at Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gateway of the city. When he saw them, he got up to meet them and bowed down with his face to the ground. 2 “My lords,” he said, “please turn aside to your servant’s house. You can wash your feet and spend the night and then go on your way early in the morning.”
“No,” they answered, “we will spend the night in the square.”
3 But he insisted so strongly that they did go with him and entered his house. He prepared a meal for them, baking bread without yeast, and they ate. 4 Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom — both young and old — surrounded the house. 5 They called to Lot , “Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them.”
6 Lot went outside to meet them and shut the door behind him 7 and said, “No, my friends. Don’t do this wicked thing. 8 Look, I have two daughters who have never slept with a man. Let me bring them out to you, and you can do what you like with them. But don’t do anything to these men, for they have come under the protection of my roof.”
9 “Get out of our way,” they replied. And they said, “This fellow came here as an alien, and now he wants to play the judge! We’ll treat you worse than them.” They kept bringing pressure on Lot and moved forward to break down the door.

Quick Thoughts:

v5) WHY do these men want to have sex with the angels?

v8 ) So, having sex with his daughters isn’t a wicked thing??? What’s going on here!

v9) I thought this verse was interesting, particularly the words ‘he wants to play the judge’ . Isn’t this the typical response from someone that is confronted with their sin!

10 But the men inside reached out and pulled Lot back into the house and shut the door. 11 Then they struck the men who were at the door of the house, young and old, with blindness so that they could not find the door.
12 The two men said to Lot , “Do you have anyone else here — sons-in-law, sons or daughters, or anyone else in the city who belongs to you? Get them out of here, 13 because we are going to destroy this place. The outcry to the LORD against its people is so great that he has sent us to destroy it.”

Further Thoughts:

So WHY do these men want to have sex with the angels? It’s fairly obvious, but let’s explore it a little. I believe these men wanted to have sex with the angels because SIN IS CORRUPTING. Sin is not satisfied with corrupting individuals, there is an insatiable need for sin to corrupt others. These men wanted to corrupt and defile the angels. Remember Adam and Eve or Eve and Adam: Genesis 3:6b she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. NIV Sin insatiably defiles! If someone is living in sin they corrupt and defile themselves and their sinful position will want to corrupt and defile others. WATCH OUT! If there is someone living in sin around you they are going to want to drag you into their sin as well!

Here’s a side issue, why did God destroy Sodom and Gomorrah? Why didn’t he have a bit more mercy? Well, read Genesis 18. Clearly God was open to be merciful. But here’s the problem, let’s go to Romans 1:24-28:
24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator — who is forever praised. Amen.
26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion.
28 Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, He gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done. NIV

The key verse here is verse 28 ‘He gave them over to a depraved mind’. This is very serious. A person can get themselves so deliberately entwined with sin that God gives them over to a depraved mind – ie: their hearing God and their hearing their conscience is Spiritually dead!

This post is getting a little long, stick around for part 2.

Blessings

Steve

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