Likewise as it was also in the days of Lot: They ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built; but on the day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all. Even so will it be in the day when the Son of Man is revealed. “In that day, he who is on the housetop, and his goods are in the house, let him not come down to take them away. And likewise the one who is in the field, let him not turn back. Remember Lot’s wife. Whoever seeks to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it. (Luke 17:28-33)
Remember Lots Wife – Now
There have always been cities filled with immorality and wickedness since the fall of man. The world became so wicked in the days of Noah that God destroyed all life with a flood. Only Noah and his family were saved from the wrath of judgment. During the days of Abraham, the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah were so wicked they became the focus of God’s wrath. It takes a lot of cruel wickedness to bring the Lord to the decision of obliterating a place on earth. Sodom and Gomorrah came into the periscope of the anger of the Lord, and He determined to destroy them. The only thing standing in the way of God’s judgment was the mercy the Lord extended toward Abraham and his nephew, Lot.
Lot and his family joined Abraham on their journey from the Ur of Chaldee. When Abraham came into Canaan, he pitched his tent between Bethel and Ai. Both Abraham and Lot were very rich in livestock, flocks, and herds. After a time, the land could not support both herds, and Abraham allowed Lot to choose the choice land. However, the plains of the Jordan had the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. These cities were already known as very wicked. Lot would eventually move his family into the city, and this decision would cost him everything dear to him. He was vexed about the city’s immorality but never removed his family. The influences of Sodom and Gomorrah began to break down the righteousness of Lot and his wife.
One day, two men appeared in the city of Sodom. Lot was a leading member of the community as he sat at the gate of Sodom. Realizing the danger for the two men remaining in the city unprotected, Lot took them into his home. Later that night, the men of the city surrounded the house demanding the visitors be given to them. It was the intention of the men of Sodom to rape the visitors and use them for their pleasure. God delivered Lot and his family through the hand of the two men who were angels of the Lord. After striking the men blind, the angels warned Lot of the impending doom, telling them to flee the city. Lot lingered. He and his wife hesitated. They were conflicted about what to do. Finally, the angels seized his hand and the hands of his wife and two daughters and rushed them to safety outside the city. Only for the mercy of the Lord were Lot and his family rescued.
The angels warned the family to escape to the mountains and not look back. God was going to destroy Sodom, Gomorrah, and the cities of the plain. When Lot and his wife fled from the destruction, she looked back, and God killed her. She turned into a pillar of salt. Disobedience cost Lots wife her life because she looked back when the Lord commanded her not to look back. There was nothing of value to look back for, but she did not obey. The immediate destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah came as sudden upon the people of the city as it did for Lot’s wife. There was mercy given to deliver Lot and his family, but that mercy was denied when she disobeyed God. A warning of disobedience is engrained in the story of Lot and his family.
Jesus tells the story of Sodom and Gomorrah to reveal the manner of God’s destruction of all humanity. There was no warning to the people of the cities. They went on with their lives of drinking, buying, selling, planting, and building as if they had many years left to enjoy life. Then suddenly, without warning, the sky rained fire and brimstone, and they were dead. When the Son of Man returns, life will continue as it has for centuries. Then suddenly, the brilliance of the Son of God appears in the heavens, and the world is destroyed. Judgment begins. Souls saved and souls lost. Sadly, Lots wife looked back to something of no worth and value. She had set her heart on things of this earth, and it was destroyed. Lots wife was killed because her heart longed for the world.
So many people live every day seeking possessions that will be burned up in a greater conflagration than what rained down on Sodom and Gomorrah. When the Lord returns, all the lost will be looking back, wishing for another moment to find salvation; but will find none. The peril of looking back is believing that life is found in the abundance of things we possess. What will it profit a man when he gains all the world has to offer and lose his soul? The mercy of God has provided a way of escape. Without taking hold of the hand of Jesus Christ, there is no hope. Looking back to this world will destroy you. Look to Jesus. He will save you.