Friday, January 19, 2007

The Plight of Lot

This morning I read the story of Lot, Abraham's nephew, in Genesis 19. He comes across as a thoroughly disreputable character. He chooses to live in a city, Sodom, which is rife with abominable sin and depravity. Indeed, when the angels of the Lord come to rescue him, he is so reluctant to go that he must be forcibly removed from the city limits by the angels' hands. He offers his daughters to the mob to prevent the angels from being raped. His children reflect his character. The married daughters remain in Sodom, while his unmarried daughters ply him with wine and then sleep with him. Then of course there is his infamous wife, who is turned into a pillar of salt as she turns back to look upon all she had loved and lost.

Lot is a direputable character, and so he is a type (i.e., a representative) of every sinner. He is not saved by his virtue, but is plucked out danger by the grace of God because of the virtue of another - his uncle Abraham. We read in v.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 which Lot had dwelt." Notice the cause of God's action: his remembrance of Abraham. Abraham is a type (a foreshadowing representative) of Christ. Paul, in Romans 4, describes Abraham in just this way. The story of Abraham "was not written for his sake alone...but also for us. It shall be imputed [accounted] to us who believe in Him who raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead, who was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised for our justification" (v.23-25).

Like Lot, we delight in the depravities of civilization. Like Lot, we must be "rescued from the dominion of darkness and brought into the kingdom of the Son He loves" (Colossians 1:13). Like Lot, we are saved by the faith and righteousness of another - Jesus Christ. Even after our salvation, we continue to sin, to pine for the darkness, and to grieve the Holy Spirit with our ungodliness. Lot is a great lesson for us about the wages of sin, about grace, and about the grounds of our salvation. May we have the ears to hear it and hearts to heed it.


Blogger Rileysowner said...

While a agree that Lot was a disreputable character, isn't there more to this in the Biblical witness. Thing of 2 Peter 2:6-9. There we read, "and turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them to destruction, making them an example to those who afterward would live ungodly; 7 and delivered righteous Lot, who was oppressed by the filthy conduct of the wicked 8 (for that righteous man, dwelling among them, tormented his righteous soul from day to day by seeing and hearing their lawless deeds)— 9 then the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations and to reserve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment,"

Lot, as disreputable as he was, is also an example of how God can save his people out of temptation.

Yes, we are a lot like Lot, and like Lot we are saved by the grace of God.

4:46 PM  
Blogger Scribe said...

Good reminder. Thanks.
Lot's "righteousness" might have emerged because of all these events. I was merely struck by his behavior in Gen 19. He seems to be a conflicted individual, and hence very real. I know I have often chosen the familiar over the holy. Thank God for His grace!

9:30 AM  
Blogger Rileysowner said...

Yes, thank God for his grace.

9:36 AM  

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