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them, he ran to meet them from the tent-door, 9 | And they said unto him, Where is Sarah and bowed himself towards the ground,
thy wife? and he said, Behold, i in the tent. 3 And said, My Lord, if now I have found 10 And he said, I will certainly return unto favour in thy sight, pass not away, I pray thee, thee 'according to the time of life; and, lo, from thy servant:
Sarah thy wife shall have a son. And Sarah 4 Let a a little water, I pray you, be fetched, heard it in the tent-door, which was behind and wash your feet, and rest yourselves under him. the tree:
11 Now Abraham and Sarah were old and 5 And I will fetch a morsel of bread, and well stricken in age; and it ceased to be with • comfort ye your hearts; d after that, ye shall Sarah after the manner of women. pass on: é for therefore are ye come to your 12 Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, servant. And they said, Sode, as thou hast said. saying, after I am waxed old shall I have plea
6 And Abraham hastened into the tent unto sure, my lord being old also ? Sarah, and said, Make & ready quickly three mea 13 And the LORD said unto Abraham, Wheresures of fine meal; knead it and make cakes fore did Sarah laugh, saying, Shall I of a surety upon the hearth.
bear a child, which am old? 7 And Abraham ran unto the herd, and fetch 14 Is ANY THING TOO HARD FOR THE LORD? ed a calf tender and good, and gave it unto a · At the time appointed I will return unto thee, young man; and he hasted to dress it.
according to the time of life, and Sarah shall 8 And he took butter, and milk, and the calf | have a son. which he had dressed, and set it before them; 15 Then Sarah denied, saying, I laughed not; and he stood by them under the tree, and they for she was afraid. And he said, Nay; but thou did eat.
Ch. 19. 2 & 13 2-b Jodg, 6. 18. & 13. 15.-c Heb. stay.-- Judg. 19. 5. Pra. 104. 15. Ch. 19. && 30. 10 - Heb. you have passed.-g Heb. Hesten.- Ch. 19.3-1 Ch 24. 67.- Ver. 14.- 2 Kings 4. 16.- Ch. 17. 19, 21. & 21. 2. Rom.
9. 9.-n Ch. 17. 17. Rom. 4. 19. Heb. 11. 11, 12, 19.- Ch. 31. 35.--p Ch. 17. 17. 9 Luke 1. 18.-r 1 Pet. 3. 6.-- Jer. 32. 17. Zeeh. 8. 6. Matt 3. 9. & 19. 26. Luke 1. 37.- Ch. 17. 21. Ver. 10. 2 Kings 4. 16.
His wood for fuel he prepared, bim âlaid, were standing over against him; for if they
And dragging thither a well failed braton had been standing by him, as our translation says, he
of the fifth yearneeded not to have run from the tent-door to meet them.
Next piercing him, and scorching close his hair,
The joints they parted, &c. To Abraham these appeared at first as men ; but he enter
Ibid. ver. 419.
Corper. tained angels unawares ; see Heb. xii. 2.
Homer's heroes wait upon themselves in the common Verse 3. And he said, My Lord, &c.] The word is occasions of life: the patriarchs do the same. Abraham, VTN adonai, not mr yehovah, for as yet Abraham did no! who had so many servants, and was nearly a hundred know the quality of his guests. For an explanation of this years old, brought the water himself to wash the feet of word see on Gen. xv. 8.
his guests, ordered his wife to make the bread quickly, Verse 4. Let a little water-be fetched, and wash your went himself to choose the calf from the herd, and came feet, &c.) In these verses we find a delightful picture of again to serve them standing. I will allow that he was genuine and primitive hospitality. In those ancient times, animated on this occasion with a desire of showing hosshoes, such as ours, were not in use; and the foot was pitality; but the lives of all the rest of the patriarchs were protected only by sandals or soles, which fastened round similar to this. the foot with straps. It was therefore a great refreshment, Make cakes upon the hearth.] Or under the ashes. This in so hot a country, to get the feet wasiied at the end of a mode is used in the east to the present day. When the day's journey, and this is the first thing that Abraham hearth is strongly heated with the fire that has been proposes. Rest yourselves under the tree-we have kindled on it, they remove the coals, sweep of the ashes, already heard of the oak grore of Mamre, ch. xii. 6. and lay on the bread, and then cover it with the hot cinders. this was the sccond requisite for the refreshment of a weary Verse 10. I will certainly return] Abraham was now traveller, viz. rest in the shade.
ninety-nine years of age, and this promise was fulfilled Verse 5. I will fetch a morsel of bread] This was the when he was a hundred, so that the phrase according to third requisite, and is introduced in its proper order; as the time of life, must mean either a complete year, or nine eating immediately after exertion or fatigue is very un months from the present time, the ordinary term of pregwholesome. The strong action of the lungs and heart nancy. Taken in this latter sense, Abraham was now in should have time to diminish, before any food is received the ninety-ninth year of his age; and Isaac was born when into the stomach, as otherwise concoction is prevented, he was in his hundredth year. and fever in a less or greater degree produced.
Verse 11. Il ceased to be with Sarah after the manner For therefore are ye come] In those ancient days every of women.) And consequently, naturally speaking, contraveller conceived he had a right to refreshment when be ception could not take place; therefore if she have a son, needed it, at the first tent he met with on his journey. it must be in a supernatural or miraculous way.
So do as thou hast said] How exceedingly simple was Verse 12. Sarah laughed] Partly through pleasure at all this ! on neither side is there any compliment, but such the bare idea of the possibility of the thing; and partly as a generous heart and sound sense dictate.
from a conviction that it was extremely improbable. She Verse 6. Three measures of fine meal. The Seah, appears to have been in the same spirit, and to have had PRD which is here translated measure, contained according the same feelings of those who, unexpectedly hearing of to Bishop Cumberland, about two gallons and a half; and something of great consequence to themselves, smile, and Mr. Ainsworth translates the word peck. On this circum- say, the news is too good to be true; see ch. xxi. 6. There stance the following observations of the judicious and pious is a case very similar to this mentioned, Psal. cxxvi. 1, 2. Abbé Fleury cannot fail to be acceptable to the reader : On Abraham's laughing when the promise was made to speaking of the frugality of the patriarchs, he says, "We him, see the note on ch. xvii. 17. have an instance of a splendid entertainment, in that which Verse 13. And the LORD (Jehovah) said, &c.] So it Abraham made for the three angels. He set a whole calf appears that one of those three persons was Jehovah ; and before them, new bread, but baked on the hearth, together as this name is never given to any created being, consewith butter and milk." Three measures of meal were quently the ever-blessed God is intended; and as He was baked into bread on this occasion, which comes to more never seen in any bodily shape, consequently the great than two of our bushels, and nearly to fifty-six pounds of angel of the covenant, Jesus Christ, must be intended; our weight; whence we may conclude, that men were see on ch. xvi. 7. great eaters in those days, used much exercise, were pro Verse 14. Is any thing too hard for the Lord?] abd'n bably of a much larger stature, as well as longer lives than 27 and Hayippalé meyhovah dabar, shall a word (or we. Homer, (Odyss. l. xiv. ver. 74, &c.) makes his heroes thing) be wonderful from the Lord ? i. e. can any thing great eaters. When Eumeus entertained Ulysses, he be too great a miracle for him to effect ? 'The Septuagint dressed two pigs for himself and his guest :
translate the passage, My duvetnes **** To Dow empece; which "So saying, he girded qniek his tunic close,
St. Luke adopts almost literatim, only making it an Andising, sought the sties; thence bringing two
affirmative position instead of a question, our a fuvxT401 or the imprisonst hard, he slaughtered both, Singed them, and slash'd and spittel them, and plae'd
**T- **v empre. And which we translate, With God The whole well roasted, banquets, spits, and all,
nothing shall be impossible. Luke i. 37. Many copies Razking before Ulynses."
of the Septuagint insert the word av before que, as in St. On another occasion a hog of five years old was slaugh-Luke
, but it makes little difference in the sense. It was tered and served up for fide persons:
to correct Sarah's unbelief, and to strengthen her faith,
16 And the men rose up from thence, and spare the place for the fisty righteous that are looked towards Sodom: and Abraham went therein ? with them a to bring them on the way;
25 That be far from thee to do after this 17 T And the Lord said,
"Shall I hide from manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: Abraham that thing which I do;
and " that the righteous should be as the wicked, 18 Seeing that Abraham shall surely become that be far from thee: • Shall not the Judge of a great and mighty nation, and all the nations all the earth do right? of the earth shall be c blessed in him ?
26 And the LORD said, pIf I find in Sodom 19 For I know him, that he will command fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare his children and his household after him, and all the place for their sakes. they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do jus 27 And Abraham answered and said, a Behold tice and judgment; that the LORD may bring now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him. LORD, which am 'but dust and ashes: 20 And the Lord said, Because e the cry of
29 Peradventure there shall lack five of the Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because fifty righteous: wilt thou destroy all the city for their sin is very grievous;
lack of five ? And he said, If I find there forty 21 'I will go down now, and see whether they and five, I will not destroy it. have done altogether according to the cry of it, 29 And he spake unto him yet again, and said, which is come unto me; and if not, I will Peradventure there shall be forty found there. know.
And he said, I will not do it for forty's sake. 22 And the men turned their faces from thence, 30 And he said unto him, Oh let not the LORD hand went towards Sodom: but Abraham i stood be angry, and I will speak: Peradventure there yet before the LORD.
shall thirty be found there. And he said, I will 23 T And Abraham k drew near, and said, not do it, if I find thirty there. Wilt" thou also destroy the righteous with the 31 And he said, Behold now, I have taken wicked?
upon me to speak unto the LORD: Peradventure 24. Peradventure there be fifty righteous there shall be twenty found there. And he said, within the city: wilt thou also destroy and not I will not destroy it for twenty's sake.
a Rom. 15. 24. 3 John 6.-b Psa. 3. 14. Amos 3. 7. John 15. 15.- Ch. 12 3 & 22 18. Acta 3. 3. Gal. 3.8. Deal 4. 9, 10. & 6. 7. Josh. 24. 15. Ephex 6. 4. 8.3. & 31. 17. Psal. 5. 11. & 94.2 Rom ?. 6.-p Jer. 5. 1. Ezek. 22 30 - Luke e Ch. 4. 10. & 19. 13. James 5. 4.- Ch. 11. 5. Exod. 3. 8-2 Deul & 2 & 13.3 18. I.-- Ch. 3. 19. Job 4. 19. Eccles. 12.7. 1 Cor. 15. 47, 48. 2 Cor. 5. 1. Josh. 22. 22 Luke 16. 15. 2 Cor. 11. 11.-h Ch. 19. 1.- Ver. 1.-k Heb. 10. 22.
I Numb. 16. 22. 2 Sam. 24. 17.-m Jer. 5.1.-n Job. & 20. Isai. 3. 10, 11.- Job
that God spoke these most important words; words which Verse 25. Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?] state, that where human wisdom, prudence, and energy God alone is the judge of all men. Abraham, in thus fail; and where nature herself ceases to be an agent addressing himself to the person in the text, considers him through lack of energy to act, or laws to direct and regu either as the Supreme Being, or his representative. late energy-there also God has full sıray—and hy his Verse 27. Which am but dust and ashes] "DN" YDY own omnific power, works all things after the counsel of âpher ve epher, words very similar in sound, as they refez his own will." Is there an effect to be produced? God can to matters which so much resemble each other. Dust, the produce it as well without as with means. He produced lightest particles of earth. Ashes, the residuum of connature, the whole system of causes and effects, when in sumed substances. By these expressions, he shows how the whole compass of his own eternity there was neither deeply his soul was humbled in the presence of God. He means nor being. He'spake, and it was done : He com who has high thoughts of himself, must have low thoughts manded, and it stood fast. How great and wonderful is God! of the dignity of the divine nature, of the majesty of God,
Verse 16. Abraham went with them to bring them on and the sinfulness of sin. the way.) This was another piece of primitive hospitality Verse 32. Peradventure TEN shall be found there] to direct strangers in the way. Public roads did not then Knowing that in the family of his nephew the true religion exist; and guides were essentially necessary in countries was professed and practised, he could not suppose there where villages were seldom to be met with, and where could be less than ten righteous persons in the city, he did solitary dwellings did not exist.
not think it necessary to urge his supplication farther; ho Verse 17. Shall I hide from Abraham) That is, I will therefore left off his entreaties, and the Lord departed from not hide. A common mode of speech in Scripture; a him. It is highly worthy of observation, that while he question asked, when an affirmative is designed. Do men continued to pray, the presence of God was continued ; gather grapes of thorns ? Men do not ga:her grapes off and when Abraham ended, the glory of the Lord was thorns, &c.
lifted up, as the Targum expresses it. Verse 18. Shall surely become a great and mighty This chapter, though coniaining only the preliminaries nation] The revelation that I make to him shall be pre to the awful catastrophe detailed in the next, affords us served among his posterity; and the exact fulfilment of several lessons of useful and important information. my promises, made so long before, shall lead them to 1. The hospitality and humanity of Abraham are worthy believe in my name, and trust in my goodness.
not only of our most serious regard, but also of our Verse 19. And they shall keep the way of the Lord] | imitation. He sat in the door of his tent in the heat of The true religion-God's WAY! that in which God walks the day, not only to enjoy the current of refreshing air, himself, and in which, of course, his followers walk also- | but that if he saw any weary and exhausted travellers, he to do justice and judgment-not only to preserve the might invite them to rest and refresh themselves. Hospitruth in their creed, but maintain it in their practice. Fortality is ever becoming in one human being towards an explanation of these words, see on Levit. xxvi. 15. another; for every destitute man is a brother in distress,
Verse 20. Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah) and demands our most prompt and affectionate assistance, See the notes on ch, xiii. 13.
according to that heavenly precept, What ye would that Verse 21. I will go down now, &c.) A lesson to magis men should do unto you, do even so unto them. From trates, teaching them not to judge according to report, but this conduct of Abraham a divine precept is formed, Be accurately to inquire into the facts themselves.
not forgetful to entertain strangers, for thereby some Verse 22. And the men turned their faces) That is, the have entertained angels unavares, Heb. xiii. 2. two angels who accompanied Jehovah, were now sent 2. Whatever is given on the ground of humanity and toward Sodom; while the third, who is called the LORD mercy, is given unto God, and is sure to meet with his or Jehovah, remained with Abraham, for the purpose of approbation, and a suitable reward. While Abraham teaching him the great usefulness and importance of faith entertained his guests, God discovers himself, and reveals and prayer.
to him the counsels of his will, and renews the promise of Verse 23. Wilt thou destroy the rightcous with the a numerous posterity. Sarah, though, naturally speaking, wicked ?) A form of speech similar to that in ver. 17. An past child-bearing, shall have a son: natural obstacles invariable principle of justice, that the righteous shall not cannot hinder the purpose of God : nature is his instrube punished for the crimes of the impious. And this ment, and as it works not only by general laws, but also Abraham lays down as the foundation of his supplica- by any particular will of God, so it may accomplish
that tions. Who can pray with any hope of success, who will
, in any way he may choose to direct. It is always cannot assign a reason to God and his conscience for the difficult to credit God's promises when they relate to petitions he offers? The great sacrifice offered by Christ, supernatural things; and still more so, when they have is an infinite reason why a penitent sinner should expect for their object, events that are contrary to the course of to find the mercy for which he pleads.
nature: but, as nothing is too hard for God; so all
Lot, who was ting at the gate invites them to enter his house, and take some
Rom. 1. 21, 27.
32 And he said, " Oh let not the Lord betarry all night, and wash your feet, and ye angry, and I will speak yet but this once: Per- shall rise up early, and go on your ways. And adventure ten shall be found there. b And he they said, 5 Nay; but we will abide in the street said, I will not destroy it for ten's sake.
all night. 33 And the LORD went his way, as soon as he 3 And he pressed upon them greatly ; and had left communing with Abraham : and Abra- they turned in unto him, and entered into his ham returned unto his place.
house; b and he made them a feast, and did bake CHAPTER XIX.
unleavened bread, and they did eat.
4 | But before they lay down, the men of the The two angela mentioned in the preceding chapter come in the evening to Sodom, 1.
city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the retraturant, ain) tarty all night; which they at first refuse, 2: bun, on turing press house round, both old and young, all the people Sabon, 15. Let's deep concern for the honour and Kalety of his guests, which from every quarter: lear bum to make a most exceptionable proposal to those wicked wen, 6-8. "The vi ser procedug of the Solomitt*, 9. Loe round from their barlarity by the 5 i And they called unto Lot, and said unto aburls who smite them with diadness, 10, 11. They exhert Loot and his family to him, Where are the men which came in to thee exhortation to his was in law, 14. The angels hasten Lot and his family to depart, this night ? .k bring them out unto us, that we 15. 16. Their exhortation, 17. Lot'a nequest, 18. He is permittel to escape to Zar, 21-23. Fire and limestone are runei down from heaven upon all the cities
I may know them. of the pianin, by which they are entúrly destruyel, 21, 3. Lot's wife, looking 6 And Lot went out at the door unto them, Jelenud, becomes a pular of salt, 6. Abraham, early in the morning, discovers the Desolation of the niquitous cities, 27-29. Lot, fearing to continue in Zoar, went and shut the door after him, with his two daugliten to the mountain, aud dwelt in a cave, 30. The strange condnet of his daughter, and his unhappy deception, 30–36. Moab and Ammont
7 And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so born, from whom sprang the Moabites and Anmonkes, 37, 38.
wickedly : ND there came two angels to Sodom at 8 "Behold now, I have two daughters which
even ; and Lot sat in the gate of Sodom: have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring and Lot, seeing them, rose up to meet them; them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good and he bowed himself with his face toward the in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing ; ground;
• for therefore came they under the shadow of 2 And he said, Behold now, my, lords, o turn my roof, in, I pray you, into your servant's house, and I And they said, Stand back. And they said a Jadges 6. 39.- James 5. 16.-eCh. 18. 22-d Ch. 181, &c. Hebr. 13. 2 k Judges 19. 2.--- Ch. 4. 1.
Jode 7.--m Judg. 19. 23.-_n See (Ch. 18. 4.See Luke 24. B.--- Ch. 18. 8.- Isai. 3, 9.
Judges 19. 2.-- See Ch. 18. 5. things are possible to him that believeth. It is that faith
NOTES ON CHAPTER XIX. alone, which is of the operation of God's Spirit, that is Verse 1. Tuo angels] The two referred to chap. xviii. capable of crediting supernatural things: he who does not
ver. 22. pray to be enabled to believe, and if he do, uses not the Sat in the gate] Probably, in order to prevent unwary power when received, can never believe to the saving of travellers from being entrapped by his wicked townsmen, ihe soul.
he waited at the gate of the city to bring the strangers he 3. Abraham trusts much in God; and God reposes might meet with to his own house, as well as to transact much confidence in Abraham. He knows that God is his own business. faithful, and will fulfil his promises ; and God knows that Bowed himself] Not through religious reverence, for he Abraham is faithful, and will command his children and did not know the quality of his guests; but through the his household after him, and they shall keep the way of customary form of civility. See on verses 3—5. of the the Lord to do justice and judgment, ver. 19. No man preceding chapter, lives unto himself; and God gives us neither spiritual Verse 2. Nay, but we will abide in the streel] Instead nor temporal blessings for ourselves alone ; our bread we of NS la, nay, some MSS. have 15 lo, to him. “And they are to divide with the hungry, and to help the stranger in said unto him, for we lodge in the street;” where, neverthedistress. He who understands the way of God, should | less, the negation is understood. Knowing the disposition carefully instruct his household in that way: and he who of the inhabitants, and appearing in the mere character of is the father of a family, should pray to God to teach him, travellers, they preferred the open street to any house ; but that he may teach his household. His ignorance of God as Lot pressed them vehemently, and they knew him to and salvation can be no excuse for his neglecting his be a righteous man, not yet willing to make themselves family-it is his indispensable duty to teach them; and known, they coursented to take shelter under his hospitable God will teach him, if he earnestly seek it, that he may roof. Our Lord, willing for the time being, to conceal his be able to discharge this duty to his family. Reader, if person from the knowledge of the disciples going to thy children or servants perish through thy neglect, God Emmaus, made as though he would go farther; but at will judge thee for it in the great day.
last, like the angels here, yielded to the importunity of his 4. The sin of Sodom and the cities of the plain was disciples, and went into their lodgings. great and grievous—the measure of their iniquity was full, Verse 5. Where are the men which came in to thec and God determined to destroy them. Judgment is God's &c.] This account justifies the character given of this strange work, but though rarely done, it must be done depraved people in the preceding chapter, ver. 20. and in sometimes, lest men should suppose that right and wrong, chap. xii. 13. As their crime was the deepest disgrace to vice and virtue, were alike in the eye of God. And these human nature, so it is too bad to be described : in the judgments must be dispensed in such a way, as to show, sacred text it is sufficiently marked; and the inithey are not the results of natural causes, but come imme- quity which, from these most abominable wretches, has diately frotn the incensed justice of the Most High. been called 'Sodomy, is punished in our country with
5. Every man who loves God, loves his neighbour also; death. and he who loves his neighbour, will do all in his power Verse 8. Behold nou, I have two daughters] Nothing to promote the well-being both of his soul and his body. but that sacred light in which the rites of hospitality were Abraham cannot prevent the men of Sodom from sinning regarded among the eastern nations, could either justify or against God; but he can make prayer and intercession for palliate this proposal of Lot. A man who had taken a their souls ; and plead, if not in arrest, yet in mitigation of stranger under his care and protection, was bound to judgment. He therefore intercedes for the transgressors, defend him even at the expense of his own life. In this and God is well pleased with his intercessions. These are light, the rights of hospitality are still regarded in Asintic the offspring of God's own love in the heart of his servant. countries : and on these high notions only, the influence
6. How true is that word–The energetic faithful prayer of which an Asiatic mind alone can properly appreciate, of a righteous man availeth much. Abrạbam draws Lot's conduct on this occasion can be at all excused. near to God by affection and faith; and, in the most Verse 9. And he will needs be a judge! So his sitting, devout and humble manner, makes prayer and supplica- in the gate is no proof of his being there in a magisterial tion; and every petition is answered on the spot. Nor capacity, as some have supposed. does God cease to promise to show mercy, till Abraham Verse 11. And they smote the men with blindness] ceascs to intercede! What encouragement does this hold This has been understood two ways; 1. The angels, by out to them that fear God, to make prayer and intercession the power which God had given them, deprived these for their sinful neighbours and ungodly' relatives ! Faith in wicked men of a proper and regular use of their sight so the Lord Jesus endues prayer with a species of omnipo- as either totally to deprive them of it, or render it so contence—whatsoever a man asks of the Father in his name, fused, that they could no longer distinguish objects; or, he will do it. Prayer has been termed the gate
of heaven; 2. They caused such a deep darkness to take place that but, without faith, that gate cannot be opened. He who they could not find Lot's door. The author of the book of prays as he should, and believes as he ought, shall have Wisdom was evidently of this latter opinion: for he says, the fulness of the blessing of the Gospel of peace. they were compassed about with horrible great darkness,
again, This one fellow came in to sojourn, upon his hand, and upon the hand of his wife, and
and he will needs be a judge: now will we deal upon the hand of his two daughters; the LORD worse with thee, than with them. And they being merciful unto him: Pand they brought him pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and came forth and set him without the city. near to break the door.
17 And it came to pass, when they had brought 10 But the men put forth their hand, and them forth abroad, that he said, ' Escape for thy pulled Lot into the house to them, and shut to life; ' look not behind thee, neither stay thou in the door.
all the plain; escape to the mountain, lest thou 11 And they smote the men that were at the be consumed. door of the house with blindness, both small and 18 And Lot said unto them, Oh, not so, my great: so that they wearied themselves to find Lord: the door.
19 Behold now, thy servant hath found grace 12 | And the men said unto Lot, Hast thou in thy sight, and thou hast magnified thy mercy, here any besides ? son-in-law, and thy sons, and which thou hast showed unto me in saving my thy daughters, and whatsoever thou hast in the life; and I cannot escape to the mountain, lest city, bring them out of this place:
some evil take me, and I die: 13 For we will destroy this place, because the 20 Behold now, this city is near to flee unto, cry of them is waxen great before the face of and it is a little one: Oh, let me escape thither, the LORD; and the Lord hath sent us to de- (is it not a little one ?) and my soul shall live. stroy it.
21 And he said unto him, See + I have accepted 14 And Lot went out, and spake unto his sons u thee concerning this thing also, that I will not in-law, & which married his daughters, and said, overthrow this city, for the which thou hast
Up, get you out of this place; for the LORD will spoken. destroy this city. But he seemed as one that 22 Haste thee, escape thither; for I cannot mocked unto his sons-in-law.
any thing till thou be come thither. There15 And when the morning arose, then the fore w the name of the city was called * Zoar. angels hastened Lot, saying, k Arise, take tlry 23 The sun was y risen upon the earth when wife, and thy two daughters, which are here; Lot entered into Zoar. lest thou be consumed in the iniquity of the 24 1 Then ' the Lord rained upon Sodom and city.
upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the 16 And " while he lingered, the men laid hold | LORD out of heaven;
a 2 Pet. 2 7, 8.b Exod. 2 14.-W. 19. 17. See 2 Kings 6. 18. Acts 13. 11. d Ch. 7. 1. 2 Pet. 2. 7, 9.- Ch.19. 20.- I Chron. 21. 15.- Matt I. 18-5 Numb. 16. 21, 45.- Exod. 9. 21. Luke 17. 28 & 24. 11. Nomb. 16. 21, 26. Rev. 18. 4. I Heta are foundl.-In Or, punishment.-n Wisd. 10. 6.- Luke 18. 13. Rom. 9. 15, 16.-p Psa. 31 22.-9 1 Kings 19. 3.
r Ver. 26. Matt. 21. 16, 17, 18. Luke 9. 62. Ph2 3 13, 24.- Aets 10. 14.- Job 42.8, 9. Par. 145. 19-u Heb, thy face- See Ch. 32. 25. 26. Exod.32 10. Dent 9. 14. Mark 6.5.--w Ch 13. 10. & 14. 2-X That is, little. Ver. 20.-y Heb gone forth. z Deut. 29. 23. Isai 13. 19. Jer 2. 16. & 50. 40. Ezek. 16. 19, 50. Hos. 11. 8. Amos 4.11. Zeph. 2 9. Luke 17. 29. 2 Pet. 2 6. Jade 7.
chap. xix. 17. See a similar case of Elisha and the Sy- but the hurry and perturbation of his mind, will at once rians, 2 Kings vi. 18, &c.
account for and excuse this gross oversight. Verse 12. Hast thou here any besides? son-in-law] Verse 20. It is a little one) Probably Lot wished to Here there appears to be but one meant, as the word ina have it for an inheritance, and therefore pleaded its being a chatan is in the singular number : but in ver. 14. the word little one, that his request might be the more readily is plural, wenn chalanaiv, his sons-in-law. There were granted. Or, he might suppose, that being a little city, only two in number; as we do not hear that Lot had more it was less depraved than Sodom and Gomorrah, and than two daughters; and these seem not to have been therefore not so ripe for punishment, which was probably actually married to those daughters, but only betrothed, as is evident from what Lot says, ver. 8. for they had not Verse 21. See I have accepted thee) How prevalent is known man, but were the spouses elect of those who are prayer with God! Far from refusing to deny a reasonable here called his sons-in-law. But though these might be petition, he shows himself as if under embarrassment to reputed as a part of Lot's family, and entitled on this deny any, account to God's protection, yet it is sufficiently plain that Verse 22. I cannot do any thing till thou be come thither] they did not escape the perdition of these wicked men; and So these heavenly messengers had the strictest commisthe reason is given ver. 14. they received the solemn sion to take care of Lot and his family; and even the warning as a ridiculous tale, the creature of Lot's invention, purposes of divine justice could not be accomplished on the or the offspring of his fear. Therefore they made no rebellious, till this righteous man and his family had provision for their escape, and doubtless perished, (notwith escaped from the place. A proof of Abraham's assertion; standing the sincerely offered grace) in the perdition that the Judge of all the earth will do right. The name of fell on this ungodly city.
that city was called Zoar, qyi tsôar, LITTLE; its former Verse 16. While he lingered] Probably in affectionate, name being Bela. though useless entreaties to prevail on the remaining parts Verse 24. The Lord rained-brimstone and fire from of his family to escape from the destruction that was now the Lord] As all judgment is committed to the Son of descending, laid hold upon his hand; pulled them away God, many of the primitive fathers, and several modern by mere force, the Lord being merciful; else they had divines, have supposed that the words on ra-ychorah, been left to perish in their lingering, as the others were in and anno me-et Yehovah, imply Jehovah the Son, their gainsaying.
raining brimstone and fire from Jehovah the Father : and Verse 17. When they had brought them forth, &c.] that this place affords no mean proof of the proper divinity Every word here is emphatic, escape for thy LIFE; thou of our blessed Redeemer. It may be so: but though the art in the most imminent danger of perishing; thy life and point is sufficiently established elsewhere, it does not thy soul are both at stake. Look not behind thee-Thou appear to me to be plainly indicated here. And it is hast but barely time enough to escape from the judgment that always better on a subject of this kind, not to have recourse is now descending; no lingering or thou art lost! one look to proofs which require proofs to confirm them. It back may prove fatal to thee, and God commands thee to must however be granted, that tro persons, mentioned as avoid it. Neither stay thou in all the plain, because God Jehovah, in one verse, is both a strange and curious cirwill destroy that as well as the city; escape to the moun cumstance: and it will appear more remarkable when we tain ; on which these judgments shall not light; and which consider that the person called Jehovah, who conversed God has appointed thee for a place of refuge; lest thou be with Abraham, see chap. xviii. and sent those two angels CONSUMED. It is not an ordinary judgment that is coming; to bring Lot and his family out of this devoted place; and a fire from heaven shall burn up the cities, the plain, and seems, himself, after he left off talking with Abraham, to all that remain in the cities and in the plains. Both the have ascended to heaven, ver. 33. does not any more appear beginning and end of this exhortation are addressed to his on this occasion till we hear that JEHOVAH rained upon personal feelings. “Skin for skin, yea, all that a man Sodom and Gomorrah brimstone and fire from JEHOVAR hath will he give for his life:" and self-preservation is the out of heaven. This certainly gives a full countenance to first law of nature, to which every other consideration is the opinion referred to above; though still it may fall short minor and unimportant.
of positive proof. Verse 19. I cannot escape to the mountain] He saw Brimstone and fire) The word n°9da gaphrith, which the destruction so near, that he imagined he should not we translate brimstone, is of very uncertain derivation, have time sufficient to reach the mountain before it arrived. It is evidently used metaphorically, to point out the utmost He did not consider, that God could give no command to degrees of punishment executed on the most flagitious his creatures, that it would be impossible for them to fulfil; I criminals, in Deut. xxix. 23. Job xviü. 15. Psal. xi. 6.
25 And he overthrew those cities, and all the 26 | But his wife looked back from behind plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and him, and she became ba pillar of salt. & that which grew upon the ground.
27 | And Abraham gat up early in the
a Ca. 14. 3. Pra. 107. 31.
b Ver. 17. Numb. 16. 38. Prov. 14. 14. Wiad. 10. 7. Luke 17. 32. Heb. 10. 38. c Ps. 5. 3.
Isa. xxxiv. 9. Ezek. xxxviii. 22. And as hell, or an in the neighbourhood of this lake. The bitumen is, in all everlasting separation from God and the glory of his power, probability, accompanied from the bottom with sulphur, is the nost punishment that can be inflicted on sinners; as both of them are found promiscuously upon the shore; hence brimstone and fire are used in Scripture to signify and the latter is precisely the same with common native the torments in that place of punishment. See Isa. xxx. sulphur; the other is friable, yielding upon friction, or by 33. Rev. xiv. 10. xix. 20. xx. 10. xxi. 8. We may safely being put into the fire, a fætid smell. suppose, that it was quite possible that a shower of nitrouis For several curious particulars on this subject, see Dr. particles might have been precipitated from the atmos- Pococke's Travels, vol. ij. part i. c. 9. and Dr. Shaw's phere, here, as in many other places, called heaven, which Travels, 4to. edit. p. 346, &c. by the action of fire, or the electric suid, would be imme Verse 26. She became a pillar of salt] The vast variety diately ignited, and so consume the cities. And as we of opinions, both ancient and modern, on the crime of have already seen that the plains about Sodom and Go- Lot's wife, her change, and the manner in which that morrah abounded with asphaltus or bitumen pits, see chap. change was effected, are in many cases as unsatisfactory xiv. 10. that what is particularly meant here in reference as they are ridiculous. On this point the Sacred Scripture to the plain, is the setting fire to this vast store of inflamable says little. God had commanded Lot and his family not matter by the agency of the lightning, or the electric fluid; to look behind them; the wife of Lot disobeyed this comand this, in the most natural and literal manner, accounts mand; she looked back from behind him, Lot, her husfor the whole plain being burnt up; as that plain abounded band, and she became a pillar of salt. This is all the with this bituminous substance: and thus we find three information the inspired historian has thought proper to agents employed in the total ruin of these cities, and all give us on this subject; it is true, the account is short, but the circumjacent plain: 1. Innumerable nitrous particles commentators and critics have made it long enough by precipitated from the atmosphere. 2. The vast quantity their laborious glosses. The opinions which are the most of asphaltus or bitumen which abounded in that country: probable are the following: 1. “Lot's wife, by the miand, 3. Lightning, or the electric spark which ignited the raculous power of God, was changed into a mass of rock nitre and bitumen, and thus consumed both the cities and salt, probably retaining the human figure.” 2..“ Tarrying the plain, or champaign country in which they were too long in the plain, she was struck with lightning, and situated.
enveloped in the bituminous and sulphuric matter which Verse 25. And he overthrew those cities, and all the abounded in that country, and which, not being exposed plain) This forms what is called the lake Asphaltites, afterward to the action of the fire, resisted the air and the Dead sea, or Salt sca; which, according to the most au wet, and was thus rendered permanent." 3. “She was thentic accounts, is about 70 miles in length, and 18 in struck dead and consumed in the burning up of the plain, breadth.
and this judgment on her disobedience being recorded, is The most strange and incredible tales are told by many an imperishable memorial of the fact itself, and an everof the ancients, and by many of the moderns, concerning lasting warning to sinners in general, and to backsliders the place where these cities stood. Common fame says, or apostates in particular." On these opinions it may be that the waters of this sea are so thick that a stone will only necessary to state, that the two first understand the not sink in them; so tough and clammy, that the most text literally; and that the last considers it metaphorically. boisterous wind cannot ruffle them; so deadly, that no That God might in a moment convert this disobedient fish can live in them; and that if a bird happen to fly over woman into a pillar or mass of salt, or any other subthe take, it is killed by the poisonous effluvia which pro-stance, there can be no doubt. Or that by continuing in ceeds from the waters; that scarcely any verdure can the plain, till the brimstone and fire descended from grow near the place, and that in the vicinity where there heaven, she might be struck dead with lightning, and inare any trees, they bear a most beautiful fruit, but when durated or petrified on the spot, is as possible. And that you come to open it, you find nothing but ashes! and that the account of her becoming a pillar of salt, may be dethe place was burning long after the apostles' times. signed to be understood melaphorically, is also highly These, and all similar tales, may be safely pronounced probable. It is certain that salt is frequently used in the great exaggerations of facts, or fictions of ignoran, stupid, Scriptures as an emblem of incorruption, durability, &c. and superstitious monks, or impositions of unprincipled Hence a covenant of salt, Num. xviii. 19. is a perpetual travellers, who, knowing that the common people are de- covenant, one that is ever to be in full force, and never lighted with the marvellous, have stuffed their narratives broken; on this ground a pillar of salt may signify no with such accounts merely to procure a better sale for more, in this case, than an everlasting monument against their works.
criminal curiosity, unbelief, and disobedience. The truth is, the waters are exceedingly salt, far beyond Could we depend upon the various accounts given by the usual saltness of the sea; and hence it is called the different persons who pretend to have seen the wife of Salt sea. In consequence of this circumstance, bodies Lot, standing in her complete human form, with all her will float in it, that would sink in common salt water; distinctive marks about her, the difficulty would be at an and probably it is on this account that few fish can live in end. But we cannot depend on these accounts; they are. it. But the monks of St. Saba affirmed to Dr. Shaw that discordant, improbable, ridiculous, and often grossly abthey had seen fish caught in it;
and as to the reports of surd; some profess to have seen her as a heap of salt, any noxious quality in the air, or in the evaporations from others as a rock of salt, others as a complete human being, its surface, the simple fact is, lumps of bitumen often rise as to shape, proportion of parts, &c. &c. but only petrified. from the bottom to its surface, and exhale a fætid odour This human form, according to others, has still resident which does not appear to have any thing poisonous in it. in it a continual miraculous energy: break off a finger, a Dr. Pococke swam in it for nearly a quarter of an hour, toe, an arm, &c. it is immediately reproduced; so that and felt no kind of inconvenience; the water, he says, is though multitudes of curious persons have gone to see mery clear, and having brought away a botile of it, he this woman, and every one has brought away a part of “had it analyzed, and found it to contain no substances her, yet still she is found by the next comer a complete besides salt and a little alum.” As there are frequent human form! To crown this absurd description, the eruptions of a bituminous matter from the bottom of this author of the poem De Sodoma, usually attributed to lake, which seem to argue a subterraneous fire, hence the Tertullian, and annexed to his works, represents her as accounts that this place was burning even after the days yet instinct with a portion of animal life, which is une of the apostles. And this phenomenon still continues, for quirocally designated by certain signs which every month
masses of bitumen,” says Dr. Shaw, "in large hemis- produces. I shall transcribe the whole passage, and refer pheres, are raised at certain times from the bottom, which, to my author; and as I have given above the sense of the as soon as they touch the surface, and are thereby acted whole, my readers must excuse me from giving a more upon by the external air, burst at once with great smoke literal translation. and noise, like the pulvis fulminans of the chymists, and disperse themselves in a thousand pieces. But this only happens near the shore; for, in greater depths, the erup
in fragilen mintata salem, stetit ipsa bepulchrum
Ip que imago situ, formam sine caupore servans. tions are supposed to discover themselves in such columns of smoke, as are now and then observed to arise from the
Nec pluvita dilnpea sit, nec diruta rentis. Inke. And perhaps to such eruptions as these we may
Quinetiam, si quis mutilaverit advena formam, attribute that variety of pils and hollows, not unlike the
Municos solito dispungere eanguine mensen. traces of many of our ancient lime-kilns, which are found
Tertulliani Opera, vol. ip. 731 Edit Oberthur.
et mul illie
Durat adhur etenim nada statione sub athram,
Protinize er acer suggeatu vulnera complet.