This is the season of the year when Christians and those under Christian influence, look forward to Christmas. Perhaps for most in our time it is a cultural event. The recollection of the Christmas story’s account of the first coming of the Messiah is a springboard to think of preparation for his second coming. Jesus used the example of Lot’s wife to urge us to be prepared. Let’s think more about her.
Remember that Lot’s wife was warned to flee from a city appointed for destruction. It had filled up the measure of its sins. The Holy God had decided to put an end to its wickedness (Genesis 19:12-13). Think of the following:
- Sodom was full of wickedness and sin. In the Scripture, the city stands as a monument to sexual immorality, perversion, pride, love of ease, gluttony and unconcern for the poor and needy (Jude 1:7; Ezekiel 16:49-50). Sexual immorality of whatever kind is not new; neither is the pursuit of pleasure. Such sins come out of the human heart (Matthew 15:19). Life is about much more than seeking a good time. Are you giving your life for the good of others?
- There was nothing in Sodom worth looking back at. She was told that all its pleasures, and sin offers pleasure (Hebrews 11:25), would soon be no more. God did not offer her a yard sale of Sodom’s pleasures. He told her that he was throwing it all in the incinerator. She was not to even glance at its ruin. “And is it worth the while for us to return back for the sake of a moment’s enjoyment of them, before they are burnt up, and so expose ourselves to be burnt up with them?” [Edwards] Does any sensible person play in a burning house?
- Sodom was ready for a terrible destruction. It was ready for universal destruction— “and destroyed them all” (Luke 17:29). Read Genesis 19:24-25. All sorts of people perished, and not just the ringleaders in sin. All their belongings and buildings were destroyed, and even the fruitful land itself. It was ready for eternal destruction. They are an example of people “who suffer the punishment of eternal fire” (Jude 1:7; cf. 2 Peter 2:6). People may scoff at this now, and say “we want no more of this hellfire and brimstone preaching”. But one day they will scoff no longer. It was ready for sudden destruction. The word of the angels to Lot and his family was “Hurry!” Genesis 19:15; cf. 2 Peter 2:3
- Lot’s wife was warned to flee and not to look back by revelation from God. The Sovereign God directly ordered her to not look back. She stands as an example of the insufficiency of external events to change the heart. Here were angelic visitors telling her husband that all was about to be destroyed—in her own house, and she was not motivated to listen! The Lord even had his servants use a forceful means to remove her from the city (Genesis 19:16-17).
Dear readers, do not comfort your heart too lightly. She heard the way of rescue and turned back from it. You might know the good news of salvation, and yet have never repented and believed. This event from the Bible provides us a warning-example for us to evaluate our true condition. Now is the best opportunity you might ever have to turn from your sin and to trust in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation. Do not imitate Lot’s wife.
Grace and peace, David