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Genesis 19

19
Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.#The story takes place in one day (counting a day from the previous evening): evening (v. 1), dawn (v. 15), and sunrise (v. 23). The passage resembles Jgs 19:15–25, which suggests dependence of one story on the other. 1The two angels reached Sodom in the evening, as Lot was sitting at the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he got up to greet them; and bowing down with his face to the ground, 2he said, “Please, my lords,#My lords: Lot does not yet know that the men are God’s messengers; cf. 18:3. come aside into your servant’s house for the night, and bathe your feet; you can get up early to continue your journey.” But they replied, “No, we will pass the night in the town square.”#Heb 13:1–2. 3He urged them so strongly, however, that they turned aside to his place and entered his house. He prepared a banquet for them, baking unleavened bread, and they dined.
4#Jgs 19:22–25; Jude 7. Before they went to bed, the townsmen of Sodom, both young and old—all the people to the last man—surrounded the house. 5They called to Lot and said to him, “Where are the men who came to your house tonight? Bring them out to us that we may have sexual relations with them.” 6Lot went out to meet them at the entrance. When he had shut the door behind him, 7he said, “I beg you, my brothers, do not do this wicked thing! 8I have two daughters who have never had sexual relations with men. Let me bring them out to you,#Let me bring them out to you: the authority of a patriarch within his house was virtually absolute. Lot’s extreme response of offering his daughters to a violent mob seems to be motivated by the obligation of hospitality. and you may do to them as you please. But do not do anything to these men, for they have come under the shelter of my roof.” 9They replied, “Stand back! This man,” they said, “came here as a resident alien, and now he dares to give orders! We will treat you worse than them!” With that, they pressed hard against Lot, moving in closer to break down the door.#Gn 13:12; 2 Pt 2:7–8. 10But his guests put out their hands, pulled Lot inside with them, and closed the door; 11they struck the men at the entrance of the house, small and great, with such a blinding light#Blinding light: an extraordinary flash that temporarily dazed the wicked men and revealed to Lot the true nature of his guests. that they were utterly unable to find the doorway.
12Then the guests said to Lot: “Who else belongs to you here? Sons-in-law, your sons, your daughters, all who belong to you in the city—take them away from this place!#2 Pt 2:7–9. 13We are about to destroy this place, for the outcry reaching the Lord against those here is so great that the Lord has sent us to destroy it.”#Is 1:7, 9; Ez 16:49–50; Zep 2:9. 14So Lot went out and spoke to his sons-in-law, who had contracted marriage with his daughters.#It is uncertain whether Lot’s sons-in-law were fully married to his daughters or only “engaged” to them (Israelite “engagement” was the first part of the marriage ceremony), or even whether the daughters involved were the same as, or different from, the two daughters who were still in their father’s house. “Come on, leave this place,” he told them; “the Lord is about to destroy the city.” But his sons-in-law thought he was joking.
15As dawn was breaking, the angels urged Lot on, saying, “Come on! Take your wife with you and your two daughters who are here, or you will be swept away in the punishment of the city.” 16When he hesitated, the men, because of the Lord’s compassion for him, seized his hand and the hands of his wife and his two daughters and led them to safety outside the city. 17As soon as they had brought them outside, they said: “Flee for your life! Do not look back or stop anywhere on the Plain. Flee to the hills at once, or you will be swept away.”#Wis 10:6. 18“Oh, no, my lords!” Lot replied to them. 19“You have already shown favor to your servant, doing me the great kindness of saving my life. But I cannot flee to the hills, or the disaster will overtake and kill me. 20Look, this town ahead is near enough to escape to. It is only a small place.#A small place: the Hebrew word misar, lit., “a little thing,” has the same root consonants as the name of the town Zoar in v. 22. Let me flee there—is it not a small place?—to save my life.” 21“Well, then,” he replied, “I grant you this favor too. I will not overthrow the town you have mentioned. 22Hurry, escape there! I cannot do anything until you arrive there.” That is why the town is called Zoar.#Wis 10:6.
23The sun had risen over the earth when Lot arrived in Zoar, 24and the Lord rained down sulfur upon Sodom and Gomorrah, fire from the Lord out of heaven.#Ps 9:6; 11:6; 107:34; Wis 10:7; Sir 16:8; Is 1:9; Lk 17:29; 2 Pt 2:6. 25He overthrew#Overthrew: this term, lit., “turned upside down,” is used consistently to describe the destruction of the cities of the Plain. The imagery of earthquake and subsequent fire fits the geology of this region. those cities and the whole Plain, together with the inhabitants of the cities and the produce of the soil.#Dt 29:22; Is 13:19; Jer 50:40; Lam 4:6; Am 4:11. 26But Lot’s wife looked back, and she was turned into a pillar of salt.#Wis 10:7; Lk 17:32.
27The next morning Abraham hurried to the place where he had stood before the Lord. 28As he looked down toward Sodom and Gomorrah and the whole region of the Plain,#In a deft narrative detail, Abraham looks down from the height east of Hebron, from which he could easily see the region at the southern end of the Dead Sea, where the cities of the Plain were probably located. he saw smoke over the land rising like the smoke from a kiln.#Rev 9:2; 14:10–11.
29When God destroyed the cities of the Plain, he remembered Abraham and sent Lot away from the upheaval that occurred when God overthrew the cities where Lot had been living.
Moabites and Ammonites.#This Israelite tale about the origin of Israel’s neighbors east of the Jordan and the Dead Sea was told partly to ridicule these ethnically related but rival nations and partly to give popular etymologies for their names. The stylized nature of the story is seen in the names of the daughters (“the firstborn” and “the younger”), the ease with which they fool their father, and the identical descriptions of the encounters. 30Since Lot was afraid to stay in Zoar, he and his two daughters went up from Zoar and settled in the hill country, where he lived with his two daughters in a cave. 31The firstborn said to the younger: “Our father is getting old, and there is not a man in the land to have intercourse with us as is the custom everywhere. 32Come, let us ply our father with wine and then lie with him, that we may ensure posterity by our father.” 33So that night they plied their father with wine, and the firstborn went in and lay with her father; but he was not aware of her lying down or getting up. 34The next day the firstborn said to the younger: “Last night I lay with my father. Let us ply him with wine again tonight, and then you go in and lie with him, that we may ensure posterity by our father.” 35So that night, too, they plied their father with wine, and then the younger one went in and lay with him; but he was not aware of her lying down or getting up.
36Thus the two daughters of Lot became pregnant by their father. 37The firstborn gave birth to a son whom she named Moab, saying, “From my father.”#From my father: in Hebrew, me’abi, similar in sound to the name “Moab.” He is the ancestor of the Moabites of today.#Dt 2:9. 38The younger one, too, gave birth to a son, and she named him Ammon, saying, “The son of my kin.”#The son of my kin: in Hebrew, ben-ammi, similar in sound to the name “Ammonites.” He is the ancestor of the Ammonites of today.#Dt 2:19.
19
1And in the euening there came two Angels to Sodom: and Lot sate at the gate of Sodom, and Lot sawe them, and rose vp to meete them, and he bowed himselfe with his face to the ground. 2And he saide, See my Lords, I pray you turne in nowe into your seruants house, and tarie all night, and wash your feete, and ye shall rise vp early and goe your wayes. Who saide, Nay, but we will abide in the streete all night. 3Then he preassed vpon them earnestly, and they turned in to him, and came to his house, and he made them a feast, and did bake vnleauened bread, and they did eate. 4But before they went to bed, the men of the citie, euen the men of Sodom compassed the house rounde about from the yong euen to the olde, all the people from all quarters. 5Who crying vnto Lot said to him, Where are the men, which came to thee this night? bring them out vnto vs that we may knowe them. 6Then Lot went out at the doore vnto them, and shut the doore after him, 7And said, I pray you, my brethren, do not so wickedly. 8Beholde nowe, I haue two daughters, which haue not knowen man: them will I bring out now vnto you, and doe to them as seemeth you good: onely vnto these men doe nothing: for therefore are they come vnder the shadowe of my roofe. 9Then they said, Away hence, and they said, He is come alone as a stranger, and shall he iudge and rule? we will nowe deale worse with thee then with them. So they preassed sore vpon Lot himselfe, and came to breake the doore. 10But the men put forth their hand and pulled Lot into the house to them and shut to ye doore. 11Then they smote the men that were at the doore of the house with blindnes both small and great, so that they were wearie in seeking the doore. 12Then the men said vnto Lot, Whom hast thou yet here? either sonne in lawe, or thy sonnes, or thy daughters, or whatsoeuer thou hast in the citie, bring it out of this place. 13For we will destroy this place, because the crye of them is great before the Lord, and the Lord hath sent vs to destroy it. 14Then Lot went out and spake vnto his sonnes in lawe, which maried his daughters, and said, Arise, get you out of this place: for the Lord will destroy the citie: but he seemed to his sonnes in lawe as though he had mocked. 15And when the morning arose, the Angels hasted Lot, saying, Arise, take thy wife and thy two daughters which are here, lest thou be destroyed in the punishment of the citie. 16And as he prolonged the time, the men caught both him and his wife, and his two daughters by the hands (the Lord being mercifull vnto him) and they brought him foorth, and set him without the citie. 17And when they had brought them out, the Angel said, Escape for thy life: looke not behinde thee, neither tarie thou in all the plaine: escape into ye mountaine, least thou be destroyed. 18And Lot saide vnto them, Not so, I pray thee, my Lord. 19Behold now, thy seruant hath found grace in thy sight, and thou hast magnified thy mercie, which thou hast shewed vnto me in sauing my life: and I cannot escape in the mountaine, least some euill take me, and I die. 20See nowe this citie hereby to flee vnto, which is a litle one: Oh let me escape thither: is it not a litle one, and my soule shall liue? 21Then he said vnto him, Beholde, I haue receiued thy request also concerning this thing, that I will not ouerthrow this citie, for the which thou hast spoken. 22Haste thee, saue thee there: for I can doe nothing till thou be come thither. Therefore the name of the citie was called Zoar. 23The sunne did rise vpon the earth, when Lot entred into Zoar. 24Then the Lord rained vpon Sodom and vpon Gomorah brimstone, and fire from the Lord out of heauen, 25And ouerthrewe those cities and all the plaine, and all the inhabitants of the cities; and that that grewe vpon the earth. 26Now his wife behind him looked backe, and she became a pillar of salt. 27And Abraham rising vp earely in ye morning went to the place, where he had stand before the Lord, 28And looking towarde Sodom and Gomorah and toward all the land of the plaine, behold, he sawe the smoke of the lande mounting vp as the smoke of a fornace. 29But yet when God destroyed the cities of the plaine, God thought vpon Abraham, and sent Lot out from the middes of the destruction, when he ouerthrewe the cities, wherein Lot dwelled. 30Then Lot went vp from Zoar, and dwelt in the mountaine with his two daughters: for he feared to tarie in Zoar, but dwelt in a caue, he, and his two daughters. 31And the elder saide vnto the yonger, Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth, to come in vnto vs after the maner of all ye earth. 32Come, wee will make our father drinke wine, and lie with him, that we may preserue seede of our father. 33So they made their father drinke wine that night, and the elder went and lay with her father: but he perceiued not, neither whe she lay downe, neither when she rose vp. 34And on the morowe the elder saide to the yonger, Behold, yester night lay I with my father: let vs make him drinke wine this night also, and goe thou and lie with him, that we may preserue seede of our father. 35So they made their father drinke wine that night also, and the yonger arose, and lay with him, but he perceiued not, when she lay downe, neither when she rose vp. 36Thus were both the daughters of Lot with childe by their father. 37And the elder bare a sonne, and she called his name Moab: the same is the father of the Moabites vnto this day. 38And the yonger bare a sonne also, and she called his name Ben-ammi: the same is the father of the Ammonites vnto this day.