Questions to Consider
1. Genesis 18:16 begins with the phrase, “Then the men set out from there“. When you begin to study a passage of Scripture that starts with a transitional phrase like this, it’s important to find out about the back story you’re dealing with. Briefly review lesson 13 (link above) or Genesis 18:1-15. “Then” means what you’re about to read is the next thing that happened in a succession of events. What event happened first? Who are these “men” verse 16 speaks of, and where is the “there” they set out from? What have we previously learned about Sodom?
2. Examine 18:17-19. Why did God decide to reveal to Abraham what He was about to do to Sodom and Gomorrah? Look closely at Abraham’s negotiation with the Lord in 18:22-33. What might have been a secondary reason God revealed His plans for Sodom to Abraham? What was God trying to reveal about Himself to Abraham or teach Abraham through this interaction?
3. Compare Abraham’s persistence in 18:22-33 to the parable of the persistent widow. What do both of these passages teach us about persisting in prayer? About God’s attitude toward His children who “pester” Him? Does what we’re persisting in prayer about, or why we’re persisting about it matter (ex: kingdom-mindedly praying for someone’s salvation vs. greedily praying for an exorbitant car)?
4. Read this article¹ about the customs of ancient Middle Eastern hospitality between travelers and hosts. It would have been shameful for Lot to have allowed the men to stay in the square for the night and not to have hosted them lavishly. How does this knowledge of Lot’s culture help you better understand the things he said and the ways he acted in 19:1-10?
5. Even understanding the intense nature of his culture’s hospitality, was Lot’s offer of his daughters in 19:6-8 right? Compare Lot’s behavior in this passage with what you know the Bible says about parenting. Was Lot putting being a godly father first or man’s opinion of him (regarding his hospitality) first? What does the Bible say about holding to cultural rules or laws above holding to God’s law? How do you think Lot’s behavior impacted his daughters’ trust in him, their belief that he would protect them, and their respect for him?
6. Put yourself in Lot’s wife’s shoes and examine his behavior in 19:1-10 in light of these Scriptures. Do Lot’s actions lead you to trust his judgment? To feel secure and protected? To respect him?
7. Examine 19:12-14, and consider a) the evil the men of the city have already committed, and b) the fact that God is about to destroy the city for its wickedness. What kind of men had Lot chosen as husbands for his daughters? What perspective on these men might Lot’s daughters have had?
8. Lot was told to take his wife and daughters to safety (15), “but he lingered,” (16) most likely for the same reason his wife looked back at Sodom (26). Notice verse 26 says she was behind Lot. She was following him literally in that moment, but she was also following him as the leader of her family. He lingered. She looked back. Why? What impact had living in Sodom had on their spiritual lives?
9. How is God showing mercy to Lot’s family and saving them, Himself, from His wrath against sin, a picture of the gospel? What do we learn about God’s judgment and wrath toward sin from this story?
10. Read 19:30-38. Has God said anything thus far in Genesis that would have led Lot’s daughters to believe that dying childless would have been the end of the world? Recall how important it was to a woman’s standing in her culture at that time to bear children. In what ways did Lot’s daughters follow in his footsteps by bowing to culture above bowing to God? How did the immorality of the culture they were raised in influence their actions?
¹This link is an endorsement of this particular article only. I do not endorse this site in any way in which it deviates from my beliefs as outlined in the Statement of Faith and Welcome tabs at the top of this page.
In today’s study we saw examples of both Lot and his daughters conforming to culture rather than conforming to godliness. The Bible tells us we are not to be conformed to this world, and that friendship with the world is enmity toward God. Have you ever put cultural expectations, political correctness, popularity, or being on the cutting edge ahead of being obedient to Christ? Have you repented of that sin? Write a paragraph or two about how you could have handled the situation in a godly way, staying true to Christ and His commands.
Suggested Memory Verse
Far be it from you to do such a thing, to put the righteous to death with the wicked, so that the righteous fare as the wicked! Far be that from you! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do what is just?