The Book of Genesis

Chapter Eighteen

Interceding for Sodom and Gomorrah

Lesson Verse: 18:23            


I.         Lesson Introduction


A.      This and the next chapters of Genesis are two that the homosexual community wished did not exist.  They have tried their best to discredit them and make the sins of these two cities, Sodom and Gomorrah, something other than what the bible says. 

B.       The are some liberal authors that have written books saying that the sins of these cities were the sins of inhospitably and not that of deviates.  Others have written books that teach the sins of these cities were not those of being homosexual, but of being guilty of homosexual rape.  What that means is it is OK to be homosexual, just refrain from raping someone.  In all their vain efforts, all they do is deny what God said.  The bible says the sins of the cities reached unto the Lord until He had all of it He wanted.  How quickly the inhabitants of these cities forgot that just over 400 years prior God destroyed the earth with a flood because of rampant sin. 

C.       Genesis 18 is one of those chapters that reveal the world as it will be in the days of the Anti-Christ.  It is here we find in the chapter numberings' 6+6+6=18 or 666 that the sin of sodomy is associated with the Anti-Christ.  Furthermore, we find the prophet Daniel telling us that one of the attributes of the man of sin is he does not have the desire for women: Dan 11:37  Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all.  

D.      As we study the 18th and 19th chapters of Genesis we find that these men had no regard for God nor His angels.  Instead they wanted to know them as a man knows his wife.  The sins of these two cities deal with pleasing self; self-gratification.  This is what Daniel said the Anti-Christ would do:  shall magnify himself above all.

E.       By comparing scripture with scripture we must conclude that God finds homosexuality a sin.  It is a sin that is openly rebellion against the command:  be fruitful and multiply.  By continuing to compare scripture to the homosexual agenda that is forced on people in this decade we find they still do not regard God.  They have no natural desire, and they seek to magnify the sin of homosexuality above all. 

F.       Just as God deals with these two cities that accepted the sin of sodomy as normal, even so God will deal justly with the nations that accepts it as the norm today.  History reveals that every civilization that embraced homosexuality as normal went into moral decay and did not survive.

G.       Summary

1.        Here we are going to see Abraham’s compassion.

2.        Abraham is personally visited by the Lord and two angels.

3.        As he ministers to them, God again promises him an heir, and this time sets a date (18:10, 14).

4.        Sarah overhears this conversation and laughs in disbelief.

5.        God rebukes Abraham for his wife's unbelief. Sarah then denies that she laughed (18:10‑15).

6.        Both Sarah and Abraham then hear God's thrilling words (18:14). "Is anything too hard for the Lord?" (See also LL 1. 26‑3 7; Mt. 19.23‑26.)

7.        The two angels depart to complete a secret mission to‑Sodom.

8.        God then reveals to Abraham his intention to destroy that wicked cesspool of sin on the desert sand (18:16‑22).

9.        Abraham then begins his remarkable plea for Sodom.

a.       This is one of the most compassionate and persistent prayers in all the Bible.

b.       It was definite. He did not pray for "that soul nearest hell;" or for "the missionaries around the world," or for "Aunt Tilly's sore toe."

c.       It was reverent. “I ... am but dust and ashes" (v. 27).

d.       It was mixed with faith. "Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right" (v. 25).


II.       Study Lesson


A.      The Arrival Of Angels, Gen.18:1-8.


1.        Abraham sat in the door of his tent.  Suddenly he sees that there are some men standing near.  We can surmise that he did not see them walking to his tent, for the area was probably very void of obstacles that would block his view. 

2.        He rushed from the tent door to greet them.  He bestows on them honor by bowing and addresses them as Lord.  He asked them if he has found favor in their sight, please stay and do not pass by.  He then offered to get some water and wash their feet.  Notice how Abraham went out of his way to make these men comfortable. 

3.        This is an example for us.  We never know who or what is coming our way.  As Christians we need to be prepared to be hospitable to all we meet.  We never know but what from moment to moment if that person has been sent to us for a special reason.  They may need salvation, encouragement, prayer, or they may be sent to pray for us as an answer to our prayers, Heb 13:2, 1 Pet 4:9, Lev 19:33-34 And if a stranger sojourn with thee in your land, ye shall not vex him. 34 But the stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself; for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.

4.        He Had The Finest Of His Provisions Prepared. 


a.       The travelers accepted his invitation and bid him to do as he suggested, v. 5.  Here is another subtle point for us to heed.  Abraham served his guest the best.  He made them comfortable and met their needs.

b.       What is more important is he did everything that he said he would do.  Sometimes we talk about doing great things.  However once we start, we find that we permitted our mouths to overload our backs.  We immediately begin to look for a way out of the work we talked about accomplishing.

c.       The labors Abraham put into his efforts for his guests were by no means small.  It probably took the servant about two to three hours to kill, skin, and cut up the animal.  The meat had to be washed, water had to be carried, dirty water disposed of, and then someone had to cook the meat. A rough estimate of the time and labor involved for this meal would be six hours.


5.        A Good Host.


a.       He even stood by as every good host should and served them more, making sure they were comfortable.  Not everyone can be a good host.  There are many people who host a dinner or a party.  They invite many guests.  Once the guests arrive, they are sometimes left to entertain themselves while the host and hostess chit-chat with their favorite friends and ignore the other guests.  Giving the party, preparing the supper, and inviting the guest are the easiest things of all.  Making your guests feel welcome, inviting them to talk, getting to know more about them, and showing concerns for them are the most difficult tasks. 

b.       Abraham was a good host.  This is why it is said that some entertained angels…(Heb 13:2 KJV)  Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.  It is most difficult to entertain your guests.  Look at all the trouble Abraham went to for these strangers.  How often do we walk right by our brothers and sisters here at church and do not speak?  How often do we make certain that everyone knows we are here, but fail to acknowledge others are here also? 


6.        Sarah Is Tested, Gen. 18:9-15.


a.       The Men Ask, "Where Is Sarah Thy Wife?"


1)       Observe how they recognized only Sarah as his wife, and did so by inquiring for her directly.  Thirteen years ago, Abram took Hagar as his wife.  However, the Lord went right to his heart and inquired about Sarah.

2)       When asked where she was he replied that she is in the tent, v. 9.  Now, the Lord already knew where she was, she was standing in the tent door, she was not exactly in the tent.  Abraham still has problems when it comes to telling the truth about Sarah and her location both physically and spiritually in relation to him.  

3)       The Lord revealed to Abraham that in a year, He will return and Sarah will have a son, Rom 9:9 For this is the word of promise, At this time will I come, and Sarah shall have a son.  Here we find that three thousand years ago a normal pregnancy lasted about nine months; just as it does today. 


b.       Sarah Heard What Was Said.


1)       Sarah is eavesdropping; listening in when she should not.  When she heard the message, she laughed.  Her husband is 99 years old and she is 89.  She did not laugh out loud.  She laughed to her self.  The Lord sitting with His back to the tent door, knew exactly what was in her heart. 


c.       Is anything too hard for the Lord, v. 14?


1)       Verse 14 is one of the most important verses in the entire bible.  God asked a question to a man whose natural force was given back to him, and whose wife has just been given once again, the ability bear children, even when she is past child bearing years:  Is anything too hard for the Lord?” 

2)       Sarah laughed when she heard what was said.  Have we also laughed at the written word of the Lord?  Have we been guilty of doubting some of what we read?  How difficult is it for us to stand alone and proclaim to unbelievers that we believe things happened just as the bible said.  If we can not believe the miracles of the past, and if we can not affirm them in faith, how can we believe the promises made about the future?  Sarah laughed at His oral words about her future.  Have we also laughed or doubted that one day a physical body would come forth from the grave?  She laughed at the thought that a physical and spiritual body would come from the grave of her womb!


d.       Sarah denied laughing, v. 13. 


1)       Now we have to wonder just why she would deny laughing after the Lord called her bluff?  He has not turned to look at her.  He read her heart.  How bold of her to lie behind the Lord’s back!  After she was corrected, she realized that these are not ordinary travelers.  She begins to reason and comes to understand that a divine promise has been made to her.  Heb 11:11 Through faith also Sara herself received strength to conceive seed, and was delivered of a child when she was past age, because she judged him faithful who had promised.  She accepted their prophecy by faith.


e.       Be sure your sins will find you out, Num. 32:23. 


1)       Anyone that covers their sins can not prosper.  We are ever trying to hide our sins.  We start out very young in life, and it is one of the things we continue till our dying day.  Why is it we try to master the art of hiding our sins from the Master?  The answer is we are full of rebellion.

2)       Sarah lied.  God told Sarah “Nay, but thou didst laugh.”  Moses told a couple of the tribes to watch out.  Know for a surety that your sins will find you out.  We think we can hide our sin in the dirt, Josh 7:21, as did Achan.  We think we can cover our sins with our works and hid, as did Adam in our little world, Gen 3:7, 10.  We continually trying to make God out to be a liar, so we can be pure and Him at fault. 

3)       The Lord calls all to come repentance.  1 Jn 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Isa 57:11 And of whom hast thou been afraid or feared, that thou hast lied, and hast not remembered me, nor laid it to thy heart? have not I held my peace even of old, and thou fearest me not?


f.        Seek mercy, Prov. 28:13.


1)       Have we ever stopped to question why we are not prospering?  Have we confessed, admitted we are wrong from the heart, and sought to make restitution?  Have we forsaken our sins?  The word forsake means:  To give up, renounce, to abandon or desert.  Our problem is we do not want to desert our sins.  That is why the Lord does not show us prosperity and mercy.  It was about five minutes after the Lord uttered the words found in Gen. 18:15 that Sarah got right with God.


B.       Abraham Intercedes For Sodom, Gen. 18:16-33. 


1.        With their task completed at Abraham and Sarah’s, the men turn towards Sodom.  It is here that we find why the bible calls Abraham the friend of God. 

2.        Are any of us worthy to counsel the Lord?


a.       The Lord knew Abraham’s heart and knew that Abraham would lead his family in the way of the Lord.  This should be a great lesson to us regarding our places as heads of our families, churches, and communities.  We need to be the Christians that God would have us be and continue to spread the gospel and practice living more Godly lives.


3.        Ten Righteous.


a.       The Lord Honors Abraham and takes him into His counsel.  It is here that Abraham tried to Jewdown the Lord.  Abraham was the friend of the Lord.  That is why God allowed him to bargain.  Abraham is made aware of God’s plan for Sodom and Gomorrah.  Abraham no doubt hated the activities that took place at Sodom, but appealed to the Lord concerning those that were righteous

b.       Ps 25:14 The secret of the LORD is with them that fear him; and he will shew them his covenant.  Prov 3:32 For the froward is abomination to the LORD: but his secret is with the righteous.


4.        Judgment. 


a.       What an honor for Abraham.  God never tires from hearing our prayers, Isa 59:1 Behold, the LORD's hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear:  Ten could not be found.  As we know, Sodom was not spared because ten righteous souls were not to be found. 


III.     Conclusion

IV.    Study Questions