Richard Agee

Why does Scripture mention Sodom and Gomorrah from beginning to end?

Richard AgeeWhy do the prophets, Yeshua the Messiah and His apostles repeatedly refer to Sodom and Gomorrah when talking about judgment and mercy?

When someone uses the term “that person is such an angel” they usually mean that the person has a sweet, pleasant disposition, but real angels, when they are called forth to carry out the word of God. Were the angels Lot met at the gate of Sodom in Gen. 19:1 sweet, kind and compassionate beings?

In Genesis 18 we read about Abraham’s plea with God for the souls of Sodom, Gomorrah and the other “cities of the plain.” One of the things God said to the two angels with Him concerning Abraham:

“Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do, since Abraham will surely become a great and mighty nation, and in him all the nations of the earth will be blessed? For I have chosen him, so that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing righteousness and justice, so that the Lord may bring upon Abraham what He has spoken about him.” (Gen.18:17-19)

The next chapter (Gen. 19) are about righteousness, justice and judgement. How does God consider Sodom and Gomorrah? Yeshua said the Torah does three things: justice, judgement and mercy. Mercy comes only after a judgement has been rendered. After you are found guilty and the judge is ready to render a sentence.

Matthew 10 uses Sodom and Gomorrah as an example for us. When Yeshua sent the 12 disciples out to preach His message:

“Jesus summoned His twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every kind of disease and every kind of sickness.” (Matt. 10:1)

Later, we read that they were sent not to the Gentiles or Samaritans but to the “lost sheep” of Israel (Matt. 10:5–6). [For more on the consistent teaching from Genesis to Revelation of God’s kingdom being communicated through and by “lost sheep,” see the study “Lost Sheep of Israel: Continuation theology vs. replacement theology.”] He sends them out to heal diseases and to preach the truth. But Yeshua tells the disciples what will happen to those people who reject their message.

“Truly I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment than for that city.” (Matt. 10:15)

We all have our own ideas of which modern cities are most like Sodom and Gomorrah, but Yeshua is saying here that there are some cities that will judged even more harshly than Sodom and Gomorrah. Yeshua then goes on in Matthew 10 to list some cities in the Galilee that will be judged worse than Sodom and Gomorrah, including His hometown of Capernaum:

“And you, Capernaum, will not be exalted to heaven, will you? You will descend to Hades; for if the miracles had occurred in Sodom which occurred in you, it would have remained to this day. Nevertheless, I say to you that it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for you.” (Matt. 11:23–24)

What is judgement about? What comes before judgement? Injustice came before judgement. You can’t have a judgement against you if you haven’t done anything. there’s an injustice first.

Let’s read on to 2nd Peter 2 talks about how the evil angels have been reserved for judgement. He talks about how Noah was the only one spared from the judgement of the Flood. Sodom and Gomorrah is an example of both judgement and mercy:

“and if He condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to destruction by reducing them to ashes, having made them an example to those who would live ungodly lives thereafter; and if He rescued righteous Lot, oppressed by the sensual conduct of unprincipled men (for by what he saw and heard that righteous man, while living among them, felt his righteous soul tormented day after day by their lawless deeds), then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from temptation, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment, and especially those who indulge the flesh in its corrupt desires and despise authority.” (2nd Peter 2:6–10)

If you believe God, that makes you a righteous person, according to the Torah, if you aren’t righteous than God’s judgement will come upon you. The reason that Sodom and Gomorrah were judged is because Lot and his family were the only righteous ones in the entire city. We condemn Lot for moving to Sodom in the first place. We condemn Lot for offering his daughters to the mob to protect the guests in his house but we don’t see Lot as God seems him. We look at Lot as though we have never made any mistakes or made stupid decisions under pressure.

The name Sodom means burnt and Gomorrah means burnt ashes, they were named after God judged them. It shows that God is the one that runs the show and makes history happen.

Let’s move into the book of Revelation, chapter 11. The apostle John was given a measuring stick to measure the inner courts of the Temple. We also read about two witnesses. Men have all sorts of theories about who these two witnesses will be, but we need to let God pick them. It doesn’t matter if they are Jewish, Italian, Greek or whatever. How do you become a witness? You tell the truth. These two witnesses will be righteous because they believe God, and they will witness to others about God’s truth.

Revelations tells us that these two witnesses will be killed in Jerusalem. Rev. 11:8 describes what happens to these two witnesses in Jerusalem:

“And their dead bodies will lie in the street of the great city which mystically is called Sodom and Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified.”

Why does he use Sodom and Egypt to describe Jerusalem? Both Sodom and Egypt are examples of judgement that occurred due to great injustice.

Moses warns the people in Deut 29:18:

“so that there will not be among you a man or woman, or family or tribe, whose heart turns away today from the Lord our God, to go and serve the gods of those nations; that there will not be among you a root bearing poisonous fruit and wormwood.”

Moses goes on to warn that God will judge those who go after strange gods in Deut. 29:21:

“Then the Lord will single him out for adversity from all the tribes of Israel, according to all the curses of the covenant which are written in this book of the law.”

When you turn against God and go after other gods, a curse comes upon you. Why? If you go out of a lit room, into the darkness, it gets dark. That’s God’s warning that you are going into darkness. If you separate yourself from the Kingdom of God and the Kingdom of God is eventually going to encompass the entire world, there’s no life where you’re going.

The reason God put a curse against them so that the coming generation — the children who rise up afterward — would know that turning away from God is a bad thing, as Deut. 29:22-23 says:

“Now the generation to come, your sons who rise up after you and the foreigner who comes from a distant land, when they see the plagues of the land and the diseases with which the Lord has afflicted it, will say, ‘All its land is brimstone and salt, a burning waste, unsown and unproductive, and no grass grows in it, like the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah, Admah and Zeboiim, which the Lord overthrew in His anger and in His wrath.”

Moses warned Israel that if they turned away from God, they would end up just like Sodom and Gomorrah.

God said that He knew Abraham well enough that he would make sure to teach his children, his household and those who come after about God’s system. Paul says that if you believe the creator of heaven and earth then you are a descendant of Abraham. You are carrying out Abraham’s belief in God. Peter says that God will deliver the righteous from the Sodom and Gomorrah’s of our times.

Deuteronomy 32 also mentions Sodom and Gomorrah (Deut. 32:32), and these words are not just for the children of Israel but also for us. If we forsake God, He will not protect us or our children.

At the beginning of his testimony, prophet Isaiah spoke of how the children of Israel have again rejected God and entered into His judgement (Isa. 1:2–4).

“Unless the Lord of hosts had left us a few survivors, we would be like Sodom, we would be like Gomorrah. Hear the word of the Lord, you rulers of Sodom; give ear to the instruction of our God, you people of Gomorrah. ” (Isa. 1:9-10)

Isaiah likened the land of Israel to Sodom and Gomorrah. Were Sodom and Gomorrah worse than the children of Israel? Sodom and Gomorrah are given to us as an example of justice and judgement. The people who lived with Messiah Yeshua in cities such as Capernaum will be judged more harshly than Sodom and Gomorrah. Those of us who have been given the example of Sodom and Gomorrah and yet presume to go the same way as Sodom and Gomorrah will be judged even more harshly than Lot’s generation.

When God delivers the righteous away from temptation, from the modern places that are the equivalents of Sodom and Gomorrah, it’s not going necessarily going to be a pleasant experience. Righteous people such as Noah, Lot, Jeremiah were delivered from evil times but going through that delivery was not a pleasant experience. Some of the prophets were killed, yet we can say they were still delivered because they believed God, God will remember them at the resurrection. God will one day restore all the cities of the earth but He has to carry out His judgement first.

Speaker: Richard Agee. Summary: Tammy.

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