Bible Pathways 1/7/2001
Genesis 19 -- 21
Lot soon had a prominent position in Sodom, perhaps as a judge since he sat in the gate of Sodom where business and legal matters were conducted (Genesis 19:1). Lot associated with the immoral people of Sodom even though he was vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked (II Peter 2:7). When the time came for God to destroy Sodom because of the wickedness of the people (see Genesis 18:20), it was revealed to Abraham, and he earnestly prayed for Lot. As Abraham stood . . . before the Lord (18:22) praying. . . . God remembered Abraham, and sent Lot out (19:29).
The Scriptures clearly denounce homosexuality, the wicked and vile sin for which Sodom was known. Since homosexuality is so detestable in the eyes of God, we should have the same attitude as His. We detest the sin and yet love the sinner, and we pray that the sinner will repent and forsake his sin, which some did in the time of the Apostle Paul (I Corinthians 9:11). The Law, which God later gave to Moses, grouped homosexuality with incest and bestiality, and declared it punishable by death (compare Leviticus 18:22-30; 20:13; Romans 1:24-27; I Corinthians 6:9-10; and I Timothy 1:10).
Turning from our disappointment with Lot, our admiration is increased for Abraham, the father of the faithful (Romans 4:8-11,16-17). Sarah conceived, and bore Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him (Genesis 21:2). The Lord had proved faithful to His Word and, as a sign of the covenant between them, Abraham circumcised his son Isaac being eight days old, as God had commanded him (21:4).
Isaac, the miracle child of promise, entered the family life of Abraham, Sarah, Hagar the bondwoman, and Hagar's son Ishmael, who soon revealed his true character through his contempt for Isaac. In the New Testament we read that Abraham had two sons. . . . (who represent) the two covenants; the one from Mount Sinai, which genders to bondage, which is Hagar. . . . Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise. But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now (Galatians 4:22,24,28-29).
These two sons Ishmael and Isaac illustrate the nature of our lives. We are first born of the flesh (John 3:6), symbolized by Ishmael. But the moment a sinner believes in his heart, repents of his sins, and confesses with his mouth that Jesus is Savior and Lord of his life, he is spiritually born of the Holy Spirit. He then becomes the possessor of the nature of God and the new life in Christ which is symbolized by Isaac the child of faith (see Romans 10:9-10; I John 3:1-2; 4:15).
Ishmael's hatred for Isaac is symbolic of the world and its hatred of Christ and His true followers. Once we are born of God, the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other. . . . They that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts (Galatians 5:17,24).
19:3 pressed upon = urged them; 19:5 know = rape and abuse; 19:8 shadow = protection; 19:13 is waxen = has become; 20:6 suffered = allowed; 20:16 a covering of the eyes = compensation; 21:18 hold him in thine hand = take care of him.
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