As it was in the Days of Noah and Lot

"And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man. They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all. Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed...Remember Lot's wife." (Luke 17:26-32)

Remember Lot's wife. Lot's wife could not contain herself. This woman simply could not give up the world. Her mind would be conscious of all the things she was leaving in Sodom; things such as her house and its furnishings, her neighbors, her family - what a strain upon her physical being, knowing that she would never see these things again.

Would she have been a believer? Probably not, for she is not mentioned by Peter in his dissertation of "just Lot". We read the expressed announcement by the angel for Lot, his wife and his two daughters, where the Angel of God said in no uncertain terms, "Escape for thy life; look not behind thee, neither stay thou in all the plain; escape to the mountain lest thou be consumed." (Genesis 19: 17) Why all these directives? The answer was pure and simple - if you go into the mountain; your life will be spared; if you stay in the vicinity of Sodom, you will be destroyed.

Lot made a final gesture to get his sons in law to leave this city of Sodom. We read in Gen. 19:14; "And Lot went out, and spake unto his sons in law, which married his daughters, and said, UP, get you out of this place; for the LORD will destroy this city. But he seemed as one that mocked unto his sons in law." The narrative continues, "And when the morning arose, then the angels hastened Lot, (or urged Lot to hurry) saying, Arise, take thy wife, and thy two daughters, which are here; lest thou be consumed in the iniquity (or punishment) of the city. And while he LINGERED, the men laid hold upon his hand, and upon the hand of his wife, and upon the hand of his two daughters: the LORD being merciful unto him: and they brought him forth, and set him without the city." (Verses 15-16)

Notice in the reading of these verses that this family was in no hurry to leave their home. Lot, the head of his household, lingered in preparing to leave his home in the company of the two angels. Were Lot and his family lethargic about leaving? The environment seemed to have dulled his senses to the seriousness of obeying the angels of God. Do we not get the idea that Lot and his family would have perished if the assurance of God had not been operative; that said the prayer of a righteous man availeth much?

In Genesis 18: 23-24, we have these words; "And Abraham drew near, and said, Wilt thou also destroy the righteous with the wicked? Peradventure there be fifty righteous within the city: Wilt thou also destroy and not spare the place for the fifty righteous that are therein?" Abraham pleaded with the God of heaven concerning the fate of the Lot family although their names were never mentioned. Abraham seemingly almost embarrassed himself when his pleading in prayer was reduced to finding ten righteous souls in the city. Again, do we not get the idea that Lot and his family would have perished if the assurance of God had not been operative; that said the prayer of a righteous man availeth much? In a Jewish Commentary, published by the name of Soncino Books, the rabbi suggests that the reason Lot lingered was "to save his wealth." In verse 17, when the angel commanded Lot "Escape for thy life" he meant "It is enough that you save your life; do not try to save thy wealth also." We are not told of the losses sustained by the Lot family, but indications are that they escaped with not much more than the clothes on their back.

We cannot help but think about that great Day of Judgment coming. Will WE linger? Will WE ask the angel for more time? Will WE want or need to tidy up our personage, or our house, a bit before we accompany the angel? Indeed, will the Angel have to take US by the hand to get us to go to the judgment seat?

There has been a suggestion made that Lot weakened under the gravity of this situation and that he was gravely concerned over the fate of his family. The sinful surroundings that he was leaving seemed to dull his senses to the seriousness of that day. The angel had said that his work could not begin until the Lot family was safely out of the city.

If we look at 2nd Peter 2: 6-9; we read these words, "And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly; And delivered just Lot, vexed (Strong's G2669 meaning to wear down with toil and rendered in the Scriptures as oppressed) with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed [Strong's G928 meaning to torture and rendered in the Scriptures as pain, toil, torment,] his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;) The LORD knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished."

The New Testament gives an entirely different perspective of Lot in his life in the Truth. Peter calls him "just", for he had to put up with seeing and hearing, being oppressed with the filthy conduct of those around him. If that is not enough, Peter calls Lot "that righteous man" who had to put up with being in and amongst those who may have tormented him spiritually, if not physically, as he tried to live the Truth.

What about those of us who have lived during the 20th and 21st century, who have tried to live "The Truth"? Are we vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked? How are we exposed if we do not mix with them? Do we invite that language into our living rooms each day? Would our parents, if they were living, put up with such talk and manner of life?

As it was in the days of Noah. The days of Noah were not unlike those of Lot. If we make a comparison between the days of Noah and Lot, we would find them both very similar; in fact, one might not be able to tell one from another. We read from Matthew's account in chapter 24: 36-39 "But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be."

If we look at Genesis 6: 8-9: We find "But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD. These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God." When we read that Noah was perfect in his generations, we find that perfect as used here is defined as entire, integrity and truth. (Strong's H8549) When this Hebrew word is translated into English, we find such words used as, 'without-blemish, complete, full, perfect, sound, without spot, undefiled, upright, and whole.' When we come to a verse that has a word translated, I think we need to be careful what word we assign as its definition.

When we compare the days of Lot with the days of Noah, we find them very similar. We are told that the people ate, drank, planted and builded. They did much the same things that we do today. When we look around us, our days and their days were very much alike. Everyone is going about his own business in a methodical way. We all follow a given routine Monday through Friday, no matter whether it's school, work or home making. Saturday is mostly used to do the odd jobs- to do those things we could not find time to do those other five days. Sundays are reserved for the LORD. There will be deviations to some extent, but any spare time should go to the LORD, not to our own pastimes. We should remember the Psalm that says, "Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands. Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing. Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture."

There is yet another time in which the Scriptures make mention of mankind's wayward ways. It is when the Apostle Paul wrote to the ecclesia at Rome. In the very first chapter, Paul relates how corrupt the brethren and sisters were as he addressed them as "beloved of God" and "called to be saints." It was not often that Paul had to admonish the saints in his epistles. He described how they "became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened... changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man... changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator." So it was that "God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature...also the men leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly." Do we not hear of these same activities throughout mankind today?

When doth our LORD come? The Scriptures tell us that it will be like the days of Noah and Lot. What happened in those days, while they were busily occupied in their day to day routines? The people in the days of Noah had their routine interrupted on "the day that Noah entered into the ark "and the flood came, and destroyed them all." Likewise, the routine of the people in the days of Lot was interrupted on the day that Lot went out of Sodom, when " it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all." Should we not take heed to the probability that we will also be interrupted suddenly by the return and the judgments of our Lord?

Calvin Dodl

Richmond, VA