Bible study 19 – Genesis 19Posted: October 21, 2016
There’s a lot of action in this chapter. Incidentally, our hero’s name is also “Lot”. Remember, he is Abraham’s nephew, and he moved to Sodom after being expelled from Canaan by Abraham. When two angels visit Sodom, Lot lets them stay in his house, but the wicked people of Sodom quickly come and ask him to turn over the angels so they can rape them (is this what Sodomites do to all visitors? No wonder the rumours reached God). Lot suggests they rape his two virgin daughters instead, but the Sodomites refuse the offer and try to break in. But the angels make them all blind, and tells Lot he has to flee with all his family from the city, because God has decided to destroy the city. (Assuming Lot and his family are the only righteous people in Sodom, this is probably a clever way to avoid breaking God’s earlier promise to Abraham. Although it seems rather unlikely there isn’t a single (or ten) innocent children in the whole city… maybe you have to be 18 to be considered responsible for your actions, and therefore “righteous”?)
Lot refuses to leave, and is forcibly taken out of the city. The angels tell him to flee and “not look back”, a command which turns out to be much more literal than Lot’s poor wife apparently thought, as she is turned into a pillar of salt when she looks back while fleeing. Meanwhile, God rains sulfur and fire on Sodom, and also Gomorrah, which God apparently threw in for good measure.
Now Lot lives in a cave with his two daughters, who seem to believe that the whole human race has been exterminated by the destruction of the two cities. Since there is no one else to impregnate them, they get their father drunk, wait until he passes out, and rape him, one night each. Incidentally, their incestuous children become the ancestors of the future Israelites’ fierce enemies the Moabites and the Ammonites.