Lot’s Choice. The story of Lot’s choice teaches a crucial lesson about life’s choices: Since choices often result in eternally significant consequences, we must choose in line with God’s principles.
Genesis 13:5-18 “Now Lot, who was moving about with Abram, also had flocks and herds and tents. But the land could not support them while they stayed together, for their possessions were so great that they were not able to stay together. And quarreling arose between Abram’s herdsmen and the herdsmen of Lot. The Canaanites and Perizzites were also living in the land at that time. So Abram said to Lot, “Let’s not have any quarreling between you and me, or between your herdsmen and mine, for we are brothers. Is not the whole land before you? Let’s part company. If you go to the left, I’ll go to the right; if you go to the right, I’ll go to the left.” Lot looked up and saw that the whole plain of the Jordan was well watered, like the garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt, toward Zoar. (This was before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.) So Lot chose for himself the whole plain of the Jordan and set out toward the east. The two men parted company. Abram lived in the land of Canaan, while Lot lived among the cities of the plain and pitched his tents near Sodom. Now the men of Sodom were wicked and were sinning greatly against the Lord. The Lord said to Abram after Lot had parted from him, “Lift up your eyes from where you are and look north and south, east and west. All the land that you see I will give to you and your offspring forever. I will make your offspring like the dust of the earth, so that if anyone could count the dust, then your offspring could be counted. Go, walk through the length and breadth of the land, for I am giving it to you.”
The herdsmen of Lot and Abram were quarreling because there wasn’t adequate land to support all their flocks. So Abram gave Lot his choice of where to settle. Lot surveyed the land and decided to move down into the lush Jordan valley. That choice was the beginning of Lot’s gradual but steady spiritual decline. First he looked toward Sodom. Then he moved his tents near Sodom. Next we find Lot living in Sodom in Genesis 14:12 “They also carried off Abram’s nephew Lot and his possessions, since he was living in Sodom.” Finally he is sitting in the gate of Sodom in Genesis 19:1 “The two angels arrived at Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gateway of the city.” He was a city official. Lot lost his wife, barely escaped with his own life and his two daughters, and goes off the Old Testament page hiding in a cave where his daughters make him drunk and commit incest with him. The offspring of those disgraceful nights were the Moabites and the Ammonites, two of Israel’s perennial enemies. It all began with Lot’s choice to live near Sodom.
Where do we ever get the notion that wealth will solve our problems? Some of the most unhappy families in the world are those with the most money. The increased strife led to increased responsibility for choices. Lot didn’t just decide for himself but his family, servants and their families whom would be affected by his decision. The increased responsibility for choices led to increased wickedness in Lot’s case, choosing Sodom.
Genesis 13 is the first mention of wealth in the Bible. Wealth can be a blessing, but we need to recognize something that isn’t very often in our prosperous culture: Wealth is a dangerous blessing! When your income increases, so does your responsibility to God.
When faced with choices to make consider the spiritual implications for you and your family and seek God’s will to help you make good choices.
Dear God, I need wisdom that only your Spirit can give me. Help me to not lean solely on my own opinions, thoughts, or dreams or what the society and culture have to say. I need godly wisdom, Lord. Please supply me in knowledge and trust as I battle tough decisions. Amen.