I’m a lot more worried by Lot

The unbridled activities of the ancient cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, climaxed by their attempted homosexual gang rape of angels, and their subsequent fiery demise, has of course become a classic measuring stick of evil and divine judgment.

I find myself more continually disturbed by Lot.

Why?  Because I’m much more likely to also co-exist on easy street, to somewhat uneasily rub along in silent disapproval of moral rot, being inwardly disturbed, but basically inactive, than I am to go out and participate in overt orgies.

Lot left Haran and kith and kin to follow Uncle Abraham to the promised land. He entertained angels unaware and went to their defense. He lived amongst, but was not part of,  the society around him, so that his neighbours said, “He came as a stranger and does he think he can now judge us?” He was one of four, (six short of the negotiated ten necessary to save the city) snatched from Sodom’s sulphured end, because of his righteousness, by God’s mercy and through Abraham’s intercession.

And yet he leaves me with nothing but quease and questions.

What was Lot doing, actually living within the walls of Sodom? Where was his tent?  What happened to the flocks and herds and herdsmen, so numerous that he couldn’t find sufficient grazing space next to Abraham to feed them? Were there no righteous retainers in his household? Why wasn’t his capture by Chedorlaomer a wake up call?  Why is there no record of thankfulness to Abraham for his  rescue?  Why was he willing to throw his virgin daughters to the wolves? Why were they engaged to local pagans?  Why did Lot dither about leaving Sodom until the angels were forced to grab his hands and physically extract him? Why did his wife look back? Why did he negotiate to escape to little Zoar instead of obeying and hi-tailing it to the hills, where there was safety and again, Uncle Abraham?

How did he end up in a cave in the mountains, a pathetic victim to post-traumatic stress, fathering his own grand-children in a drunken stupor?

Such a sordid little story of the dangers of mediocre faith and quasi commitment.

I did not enjoy working on the translation.

I much preferred studying his great-great-great…. grand-daughter Ruth, who said to her mother-in-law,

“Do not urge me to leave you or turn back from following you;

for where you go, I will go,

and where you lodge, I will lodge.

Your people shall be my people, and your God, my God.

Where you die, I will die, and there I will be buried.”

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1 Comment »

  1. scott said

    I like this.

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