Understanding the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah is also vital to understanding God’s disposition toward the sin of sexual immorality in general and homosexuality in particular. The LORD is often accused as being capricious in the Old Testament and filled with uncontrolled anger. The accounts of Sodom and Gomorrah, specifically as they relate to the Abrahamic Covenant, reveals that the LORD is just the opposite of what He is accused. Yes, He is a jealous God (Ex. 20:15; Ex. 34:14; Deut. 4:24). However, His jealousy is provoked by His righteousness and holiness. The context of Genesis chapters 18 and 19 reveals that Yahweh has set His sights on Sodom and Gomorrah. Their wickedness is not merely an afterthought. Instead, her sins are crying out for judgment. Impending judgment solicits Abraham’s plea for mercy. In Abraham’s dialogue with Yahweh, it is evident that if there are among the wicked, righteous persons then a stay of execution will be granted to Sodom and Gomorrah.
If we fast forward, God’s holiness demands judgment. It demands that His wrath must be satisfied. His assurances to Abraham testify that He is merciful to the righteous. However, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah are clear indications that there were no righteous ones present in Sodom and Gomorrah. What were her sins?
In Genesis 19:1-11, we read that there were angels who had come to Sodom. It was the men of the town who desired sexual relations with them, as they stayed in Lot’s home. Their behavior became aggressive and debaucherous. Their grievous desires caused them to pursue that which is abominable in the sight of God. In case there are any misunderstandings as to how this was viewed, even in the ancient world, Lot’s response to the men is revealed in Genesis 19:7, “…please do not act wickedly.” There was nothing natural, noble, or normal about what the townsmen desired to do with the angels. Their depravity is evident as Lot would rather give his daughter over to them if it would satisfy their perverse blood lust. The men were struck with supernatural blindness (v. 11), so that they could not consummate their vileness as they had hoped with the angels.
After this account, Genesis 19:12-25 records the warning from the angels and the destruction of Sodom. The LORD rained fire and brimstone upon the land, as He promised. Abraham surveys the damage in Genesis 19:23-27. This is not a mythological account, as the sinfulness of man would rather mythologize historical realities than face them. The justice of God demanded retribution for wickedness. Since the Abrahamic Covenant promised blessing for the nations, one can readily admit that Sodom, Gomorrah, and the respective villages had no allotment in this promise. The angels had come as visible warning to the city. Instead of responding in repentance, Sodom and Gomorrah responded with sexual perversity. One facet of her wickedness is identified as homosexuality. God’s love is expressed toward those who are recipients of His righteousness and have contrite hearts of repentance and faith in His name. He is not obligated to tolerate wickedness and vileness, no matter how much the modern society legislates sin or attempts to make it socially respectable. This reminder of God’s hatred for sin, specifically homosexual sin, is a timeless warning. We will continue to examine a biblical theology of God’s dealing with homosexuality, while pleading with those who are captive to this sin that they must repent of their sins and turn from this perverse generation, flee the wrath to come and turn to Christ Jesus. Do not excuse your sin, because a deceived society provides excuses. Do not genetically justify persistence in sin because novel, genetic arguments are ‘discovered’ with no basis. It is time that the Christian’s love in calling such sinners to repent, supersedes the world’s permissible hatred as she speedily rushes toward the judgement of God for her own sins. Sexual perversion, as we see in this Genesis account, and will see in the Scriptures to follow, is the last expression of depravity before the wrath of God is dispensed in unrestrained fury. The mercy of God in Jesus Christ demands, not smug replies and witty quips, but falling upon your face in mourning over wickedness that shall separate you forever from the love of God in Jesus Christ.
(To Be Continued…)
Biblical Christ Research Institute