Genesis 19: The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah; The Birth of Moab and Ammon

hqdefaultHebrew-English Text

I. Summary

The townspeople of Sodom attempt to rape the two travelers, who are staying with Lot. Yahweh destroys Sodom and Gomorrah but saves Lot and his daughters, though Lot’s wife is turned to salt. Lot’s daughters cohabit with their father and give birth to the nations of Moab and Ammon .

II. Photo

Lot’s wife is no more: “Lot’s wife looked back, and she thereupon turned into a pillar of salt.” (v. 26)

III. Select Verses

4-11: They had not yet lain down, when the townspeople, the men of Sodom, young and old — all the people to the last man — gathered about the house. And they shouted to Lot and said to him, “Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us, that we may be intimate with them.” So Lot went out to them to the entrance, shut the door behind him, and said, “I beg you, my friends, do not commit such a wrong. Look, I have two daughters who have not known a man. Let me bring them out to you, and you may do to them as you please; but do not do anything to these men, since they have come under the shelter of my roof.” But they said, “Stand back! The fellow,” they said, “came here as an alien, and already he acts the ruler! Now we will deal worse with you than with them.” And they pressed hard against the person of Lot, and moved forward to break the door. But the men stretched out their hands and pulled Lot into the house with them, and shut the door. And the people who were at the entrance of the house, young and old, they struck with blinding light, so that they were helpless to find the entrance.

15-16: As dawn broke, the angels urged Lot on, saying, “Up, take your wife and your two remaining daughters, lest you be swept away because of the iniquity of the city.” Still he delayed. So the men seized his hand, and the hands of his wife and his two daughters — in the LORD’s mercy on him — and brought him out and left him outside the city.

23-26: As the sun rose upon the earth and Lot entered Zoar, the LORD rained upon Sodom and Gomorrah sulfurous fire from the LORD out of heaven. He annihilated those cities and the entire Plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities and the vegetation of the ground. Lot’s wife looked back, and she thereupon turned into a pillar of salt.

29: Thus it was that, when God destroyed the cities of the Plain and annihilated the cities where Lot dwelt, God was mindful of Abraham and removed Lot from the midst of the upheaval.

36-38: Thus the two daughters of Lot came to be with child by their father. The older one bore a son and named him Moab; he is the father of the Moabites of today. And the younger also bore a son, and she called him Ben-ammi; he is the father of the Ammonites of today.

IV. Outline

1-29. The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah

    1-3. Lot convinces the two visitors to lodge by him 

    4-5. The townspeople demand the men for sex

    6-8. Lot offers his daughters instead

    9. The townspeople attempt to break in

    10-11. The visitors shield Lot and blind the townspeople at the door

    12-13. The visitors tell Lot to gather his family before they destroy the city

    14. Lot’s sons-in-law do not believe the warning

    15-17. The visitors drag Lot and his family out of Sodom as a kindness

    18-22. The visitors allow Lot to flee to Zoar, understood to mean “insignificance”

    23-25. Yahweh destroys the people and vegetation of Sodom and Gomorrah with sulfurous fire

    26. Lot’s wife looked back and turned to a pillar of salt

    27-28. Abraham views the destruction

    29. Lot was saved on account of Abraham

30-38. The creation of Moab and Ammon

    30. Lot and his daughters flee to a cave in the highlands

    31-36. The daughters, who think the world is destroyed, give Lot wine and cohabitate with him 

    37. The older daughter bears Moab, meaning “from the father”

    38. The youger daughter bears Ammon, meaning “the son of my people”

V. Comment

No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used

(see “Commentaries” page)

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