Daily Lesson for Wednesday 25th of October 2023
Read Genesis 19:1-38:1-29. What was the result of Abraham’s spirit of hospitality, love, and prayer?
The text gives an interesting indication about the position of Lot in the city of Sodom: “Lot was sitting in the gate of Sodom” (Genesis 19:1-38:1, NKJV). This means he was an important character in the city, certainly a public officer, because sitting in the gate is a privilege of officers, judges, and kings (2 Samuel 19:8, Jeremiah 38:7, Ruth 4:1).
Genesis 19:1-38 almost parallels chapter 18 and the story of the angels with Abraham. Abraham and Lot were each sitting at an entrance or gate (Genesis 18:1, Genesis 19:1); Abraham and Lot each invited strangers to rest in their abode (Genesis 18:3-4; Genesis 19:2); Abraham and Lot each prepared food for their visitors (Genesis 18:4-8, Genesis 19:3). Whatever else his faults, Lot had some good characteristics, it seems.
“Then the Lord rained brimstone and fire on Sodom and Gomorrah, from the Lord out of the heavens. So He overthrew those cities, all the plain, all the inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the ground” (Genesis 19:24, 25, NKJV).
We don’t know how many people were living in the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah at the time of this account, but among these thousands of people only four left the city, and only three were saved. The same with the Genesis flood. We don’t know how many were alive then, but we know that most were not saved.
The small number of residents of Sodom who were saved has implications for our own mission: not everyone will be saved. We would like everyone to accept Jesus and His plan of salvation, but each person has free will. Our task is to invite as many people as possible to make the choice for Jesus. While we are carrying out our mission, God assists us through the Holy Spirit, but He will never go against the will of anyone. Free will means that, in the end, no matter what we do, no matter how much we pray, salvation comes down to each individual’s choice.
How can we learn not to be discouraged if we are not seeing the kind of results that we want when we do mission?