Gen. 19:1 And there came two angels to Sodom at even; and Lot sat in the gate of Sodom: and Lot seeing them rose up to meet them; and he bowed himself with his face toward the ground;
Gen. 19:2 And he said, Behold now, my lords, turn in, I pray you, into your servant’s house, and tarry all night, and wash your feet, and ye shall rise up early, and go on your ways. And they said, Nay; but we will abide in the street all night.
Gen. 19:3 And he pressed upon them greatly; and they turned in unto him, and entered into his house; and he made them a feast, and did bake unleavened bread, and they did eat.
Here, the two men who were with the Lord are identified as angels. It is noted that it is evening when they arrive in Sodom, and Lot is sitting at the city gate. When he sees them, he rushes out to meet them, bowing down with his face to the ground. This does not appear to be a normal greeting for strangers. I think he must have recognized them as honorable men who would need his protection. They must have stood out as different as compared to the wicked people of the city. We as believers should stand out just as distinctly in this wicked world in which we live.
Insight from Stedman: “This is a technical phrase which means he was the chief magistrate of the city of Sodom. His job was not only to give an official welcome to visitors of the city but to investigate the nature of any strangers who might come, and also to administer justice concerning any quarrels within the city.”
Lot immediately invited them home with him to spend the night and wash their feet before continuing on their way in the morning. At first they refused and said they would spend the night in the streets; but Lot was so insistent that they agreed to go with him. It’s interesting that after taking them home with him, it was Lot that prepared the meal for them. We are pointedly told that he baked unleavened bread (bread without yeast). (I don’t think Lot recognized the yeast as a type of sin, but it is interesting that in the one righteous home in that city, the guests were served unleavened bread.) They ate.
Gen. 19:4 But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter:
Gen. 19:5 And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them.
Gen. 19:6 And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him,
Gen. 19:7 And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly.
Gen. 19:8 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.
Gen. 19:9 And they said, Stand back. And they said again, This one fellow came in to sojourn, and he will needs be a judge: now will we deal worse with thee, than with them. And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and came near to break the door.
Gen. 19:10 But the men put forth their hand, and pulled Lot into the house to them, and shut to the door.
Gen. 19:11 And they smote the men that were at the door of the house with blindness, both small and great: so that they wearied themselves to find the door.
Before they could go to bed, the house was surrounded by all of the men in the city, both young and old, from every part of the city of Sodom. They wanted Lot to send his guests out to them to satisfy their lustful desires. Lot is actually quite brave. He goes out to confront this mob alone to attempt to protect his guests.
As a mom, I don’t understand why Lot would offer his own daughters to the mob. I understand that women were not accounted for much in the culture of that day. Though his actions showed great concern for his guests, they showed no concern whatsoever for his daughters. There is simply no justification for his action! And there is no comment one way or other in the scripture to help me understand.
The mob has no intention of listening to Lot, an outsider. They began pressing him back to break down the door. The angels reached out and pulled Lot back inside the house and shut the door. Then they caused all the men to become blind so they couldn’t find the door.
Wayne Walter gave further insight in his article on 4th Sedrah at www.lampresource.com: “Even though Lot was not near the man his uncle Abraham was, he had nevertheless not sunk so low as to be reckoned as a true Sodomite. For Sodom saw him as a stranger, a presumptuous judge over their actions, and one who interfered with their customs.”
Gen. 19:12 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:
Gen. 19:13 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.
Gen. 19:14 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.
Lot was told to gather anyone who belonged to him and get out of the city because it was going to be destroyed because of its great wickedness. (How could Lot have chosen to keep his family there and still be considered a righteous person?) So, Lot goes out to get his sons-in-law, but they don’t believe he is serious. They think he is joking about the coming destruction. (Lot must have had other daughters that were already married.)
It’s interesting to note that Lot’s whole family was to be spared based on his righteousness—not theirs.
2 Peter 2:7–8 “And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;)”
We are spared God’s judgment based on the righteousness of Jesus because we are part of His family.
Gen. 19:15 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.
Gen. 19:16 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.
Gen. 19:17 And it came to pass, when they had brought them forth abroad, that he said, Escape for thy life; look not behind thee, neither stay thou in all the plain; escape to the mountain, lest thou be consumed.
It’s almost dawn, so the angels urge Lot to take his wife and two daughters and flee or they will be consumed when the city is destroyed. Lot was reluctant and hesitant; so the angels grabbed their hands and led them out of the city. This is identified as a merciful act on the part of the LORD. I think this had to be more in honor of Abraham than Lot—v.29; although as shown above in 2Peter 2, Lot was a righteous man.
Courson made a great point (my paraphrase) – Righteousness is imputed to us based upon our faith; it isn’t dependent upon our works.
Then the angels warned them to run for their lives and not look back. They were to leave the plains totally and run to the mountain.
Gen. 19:18 And Lot said unto them, Oh, not so, my Lord:
Gen. 19:19 Behold now, thy servant hath found grace in thy sight, and thou hast magnified thy mercy, which thou hast shewed unto me in saving my life; and I cannot escape to the mountain, lest some evil take me, and I die:
Gen. 19:20 Behold now, this city is near to flee unto, and it is a little one: Oh, let me escape thither, (is it not a little one?) and my soul shall live.
Gen. 19:21 And he said unto him, See, I have accepted thee concerning this thing also, that I will not overthrow this city, for the which thou hast spoken.
Gen. 19:22 Haste thee, escape thither; for I cannot do any thing till thou be come thither. Therefore the name of the city was called Zoar.
Gen. 19:23 The sun was risen upon the earth when Lot entered into Zoar.
Lot evidently didn’t think they could make it to the mountains fast enough. So he begs the angels to let them go to one of the small towns nearby. He is granted permission to go to the small city, and it would be protected.
It’s interesting that Lot has believed the angels to this point, but all of a sudden he questions their wisdom in telling him to go to the mountain.
In this whole chapter the angels have been referred to in plural. Now, in verse 21, in answer to Lot’s request, the answer is given “He” to “him.” Lot’s request is granted, but he is told to go quickly since he is holding up judgment.
By the time Lot reached the little town of Zoar, the sun was up.
Gen. 19:24 Then the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven;
Gen. 19:25 And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground.
Then the Lord rained down burning sulphur on Sodom and Gomorrah. The Lord destroyed the cities and the people in them, the entire plain, and the vegetation.
Gen. 19:26 But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt.
Lot’s wife disobeyed the command not to look back and she became a pillar of salt. The Hebrew for “looked” states “to scan, i.e. look intently at; by implication, to regard with pleasure, favor or care.” She obviously didn’t want to leave; she was comfortable in her sin. A command from the LORD is never to be taken lightly. We are never guaranteed a second chance to get it right.
Lot went into Sodom a wealthy man; he came out a pauper. Continual association with sin never results in good.
Gen. 19:27 And Abraham gat up early in the morning to the place where he stood before the LORD:
Gen. 19:28 And he looked toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward all the land of the plain, and beheld, and, lo, the smoke of the country went up as the smoke of a furnace.
Gen. 19:29 And it came to pass, when God destroyed the cities of the plain, that God remembered Abraham, and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow, when he overthrew the cities in the which Lot dwelt.
All of this happened in a day’s time. When Abraham got up the next day, he returned to the place where he stood with the Lord. He looked toward Sodom and Gomorrah and saw thick smoke rising from the land. I know he must have been thinking about Lot and his family. We are told that “God remembered Abraham” and protected Lot. It seems strange to me that: 1) Abraham didn’t check out for himself whether Lot got out, and 2) that Lot didn’t seek out his uncle Abraham instead of opting to live in a cave—if not for his own well being, at least for his daughters. (I just can’t get rid of this mother’s perspective.)
Gen. 19:30 And Lot went up out of Zoar, and dwelt in the mountain, and his two daughters with him; for he feared to dwell in Zoar: and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two daughters.
Gen. 19:31 And the firstborn said unto the younger, Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth:
Gen. 19:32 Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father.
Gen. 19:33 And they made their father drink wine that night: and the firstborn went in, and lay with her father; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose.
Gen. 19:34 And it came to pass on the morrow, that the firstborn said unto the younger, Behold, I lay yesternight with my father: let us make him drink wine this night also; and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father.
Gen. 19:35 And they made their father drink wine that night also: and the younger arose, and lay with him; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose.
We are told that Lot was afraid to stay in Zoar, but not why he was afraid. He decided to go to the mountain as the angels had originally instructed. They made their home in a cave. It’s pretty obvious that they had barely escaped with their lives, let alone any possessions. Why the girls thought it so important to preserve their family is a mystery to me. It couldn’t have been for inheritance purposes. It must have been of great importance in their culture—or maybe it is just the result of Lot reaping what he sowed by choosing to raise his family in such an evil environment. The girls didn’t even recognize that their choice to get their father drunk and sleep with him was sinful. After all, they had been raised in a place where it was OK to satisfy the desires of your flesh in any way you chose.
Interesting thought from Stedman: “What was the greatest pang in Lot's heart when he awoke there in the cave in the mountains and learned all that had happened? Do you think it was grief over his lost wealth, his vanished honor, his troubled mind? Do you not think that the greatest, deepest wound of all in that man's heart was the recognition of what he had done to his loved ones in Sodom, his little girls, his wife?”
The obvious question: What are the choices we make and the example of our lives teaching our children?
Gen. 19:36 Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father.
Gen. 19:37 And the firstborn bare a son, and called his name Moab: the same is the father of the Moabites unto this day.
Gen. 19:38 And the younger, she also bare a son, and called his name Benammi: the same is the father of the children of Ammon unto this day.
Both daughters became pregnant. The older daughter’s son was Moab, the father of the Moabites (the ancestry of Ruth). The younger daughter’s son, Benammi, became the father of the Ammonites. Both of these nations became enemies of the Israelites.