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DON’T LET THIS HAPPEN TO YOU

September 18, 2015

Text:  “Then the Lord rained on Sodom and Gommorrah sulphur and fire from the Lord out of heaven. And he overthrew those cities, and all the valley, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the ground. But Lot’s wife, behind him, looked back and she became a pillar of salt.” Genesis 19:23-26

Lot, nephew to Abraham, was given a choice of the land of Canaan by his uncle. He chose the best of Canaan, a cesspool of temptations. Lot and his family settled in the wicked cities Sodom and Gommorrah and became enamored of a sinful lifestyle. But God determined to destroy these cities. God visited Abraham and told him his intention, and started out with his angels (messengers) to warn Lot. The Lord told Lot to take his family and flee and not to look back. Lot’s wife became as a casualty in the escape

Her fate was her own fault because of her attachment to the temptations of  Sodom and Gommorah!  That is the way it is for those who are disobedient to God.  “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done, whether good or evil. II Corinthians 5:10  To be sure, God is just and righteous, unswerving in his judgments. “The works of his hands are faithful and just; all his precepts are trustworthy…”  Psalms 111:7 

Twice the book of Genesis relates that God punished egregious sinful behavior on a mass scale. The first was the flood that killed all men except Noah’s family. (Genesis 6-7) The second was Sodom and Gommorrah, as we have seen. “The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of  the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” Genesis 6:5 Is this also a valid circumstance of our own age? Yes!

It must have been devastating to Lot’s wife to give up her home and comforts, the racy lifestyle of her neighbors, and the family’s wealth. When it came down to the nitty-gritty, she could not overcome the enticements of the world. Her one last glance  backward betrayed the true affection of her heart. Her real loyalty was to the allurements of the world. Where do your values really lie?

The Bible is replete with examples of those who chose the things of the world. “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” I John 2:15 A rich inquirer asked Jesus. “What must I do to inherit eternal life?” Sensing the man’s involvement with wealth, Jesus replied, “Sell all that you have and give to the poor…” Mark  10:21   He made his exit, grieving the sacrifice of the riches he loved. Ananias and Sapphira coveted part of the price they  received for selling a piece of property, and lied to the apostles about the proceeds, keeping some secretly for themselves. God struck them both dead. Acts 5:1-11 Paul wrote to Timothy about his colleague Demas: “For Demas, in love with this present world, has deserted me and gone to Thessalonica.” II Timothy 4:15 Demas not only deserted Paul for worldliness, he also deserted Christ and his own eternal reward! 

God loves you, but he demands obedience.  “Whosoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.” John 14:21 Thus, one who loves God affirms that by obeying Jesus’ commandments. There must be a firm choice and a demonstrable obedience of the Lord’s commandments vs. the world’s enticements.  “Now therefore fear the Lord and serve him in sincerity and in faithfulness.” Joshua24:14   

The fate of Lot’s wife was pitiable, but here is a warning to us not to sell ourselves to the world’s blandishments! The price of loving the things of the world is a horrendous.  The blessings of serving the Lord are beyond compare!

Certainly it is time for an evaluation of your real attachments. Perhaps there are things in your life that need to be discarded. Set you sights on a heavenly reward. Serve Jesus.

 

REM

 

 

 

 

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