(Read full chapter 7 0. Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, excess of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy. The propensity for violence, rape, and adultery (which must have also been occurring in Sodom, since there were no women present at this mob scene) are all factors here though. Sodom and Gomorrah, notoriously sinful cities in the biblical book of Genesis, destroyed by “sulfur and fire” because of their wickedness (Genesis 19:24). The traditional list, is summarized in the Catechism which states The catechetical tradition also recalls that there are “sins that cry to heaven”: the blood of Abel, the sin of the Sodomites, the cry of the people oppressed in Egypt, the cry of the foreigner, the widow, and … The outcry was for justice toward their sin. They meet Lot, a relative newcomer to the city, who insists that they spend the night in his house. One such example is listed below: Another recent hypothesis about the main sin of Sodom (and one which is often taught in concert with the “rape” hypothesis) is the lack of hospitality position. 49 “‘Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy. The first was an outworking of the second. The men and women of Sodom had known and been physically rescued by Abram (Abraham) in Genesis 14:14-16. Jude describes the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah as “sexual immorality” and “going after strange flesh.” Although other scriptures back up your claim of inhospitality, this one contradicts the idea that their damnation was not for homosexuality. It was homosexuality to the extreme. The biblical story of Sodom and Gomorrah begins when two angels, disguised as travelers, arrive at the gates of Sodom. If the men of Sodom were using rape as a means to humiliate “outsiders,” then wouldn’t Lot’s daughters have qualified since Lot was considered an outsider (verse 9)? What were Admah and Zeboiim in the Bible. Michael Carden, “Compulsory Heterosexuality in Biblical Narratives and their Interpretations: Reading Homophobia and Rape in Sodom and Gibeah,” Australian Religion Studies Review, Vol. Now it must be admitted that homosexual behavior was only the outward manifestation of their true sin. New Living Translation. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from the New Revised Standard Version. Holly Joan Toensing, “Women of Sodom and Gomorrah Collateral Damage in the War against Homosexuality?,”. Did John the Baptist Know Jesus Was the Messiah? The people of Sodom ignored all of these things, and rather than be forewarned by them and repent, they continued sinning. If you covet in your heart, that can lead to stealing. Conditionalists often appeal to this verse because it says that Sodom and Gomorrah were reduced to ashes and that the destruction of the cities is an example for the ungodly. Note 5. Before I answer, I just want to make a couple of comments. The first was an outworking of the second. Anonymous. So yes, Sodom was judged for homosexual sin—which flowed from pride, which also led to cruelty and exploitation of their fellow men and women. by Kevin DeYoung, 101 Frequently Asked Questions About Homosexuality by Mike Haley. They had settled in an area near the Dead Sea, with Lot and his followers choosing to make their stead in Dead Sea plains. But what was the primary sin of Sodom (and Gomorrah and the nearby cities of the plain)? And the reason for doing so is usually apparent rather quickly. What city could ever be worse off than Sodom and Gomorrah? What Does the Bible Really Teach About Homosexuality? See … Biblically, one could see the initial validity of making this argument—but it is placing all the emphasis on verse 49 and ignoring verse 50. Why did Abraham bargain with God in regard to Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis 18)? This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Confirmation in Other Scriptures. As it was, only four left Sodom alive, and only three made it to safety. Editor’s note: This discussion of this disturbing biblical account contains terminology that may not be appropriate for sensitive readers. Thank you for signing up to receive email newsletters from Answers in Genesis. Words like haughty, bitter, venom, wanton, idleness, (when they could have been helping others) leap out of the verses as a description of a self-absorbed, hedonistic people who cared nothing for others. In Isaiah’s day, the people of Israel had stopped following God’s laws. Please refresh the page and try again. Psalm 51:4). Question: “What was the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah?” Answer: The biblical account of Sodom and Gomorrah is recorded in Genesis chapters 18-19. But we must keep in mind that God was also ready to show mercy. In other words, in threatening to now rape Lot, they were admitting that their desire for the angels was pure lust, not dominance in the form of rape. When the angels of God came to fetch Lot and his family, the men wanted to have sex with them. All of these are manifestations of pride itself. In addition, the city was so wicked that its men … “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,” (2 Peter 2:6). How Do We Know the Bible Is True? You can also sign up for our free print newsletter (US only). Contextually, that is poor exegesis. An especially wicked place is described as a "Sodom and Gomorrah." Volumes 1 & 2. In contrast to Lot's gracious hospitality, which includes preparing a feast for his guests, the men surround Lot's house … The sin of Sodom and Gomorrah wasn't independence and isolationism, it was extreme wickedness. While their sexual sins again were highlighted in Genesis 19, the real object of their sin is revealed in the pre-destruction polemic against them several chapters earlier: “But the men of Sodom were exceedingly wicked and sinful against the LORD” (Genesis 13:13; cf. In time, however, many issues arose. Rather than compare Sodom and Gomorrah to other ancient cultures and seek to justify their sexual immorality, Sodom and Gomorrah should be compared to Nineveh during the time of Jonah. While it is true that all sin begins in the heart and then works its way outward (James 1:14–15), the outward sin reflects the inward desire. While this latter sin is mentioned in the second half of Ezekiel 16:49, it is not (as posited in the second quote above) the primary sin of Sodom and Gomorrah. Privacy Policy and Therefore, the reference to their wickedness and ordained destruction by God beforehand (in Genesis 13:13 and 18:20) is entirely appropriate, because it was sexual sin (in this case homosexuality) which God considered “grievous” or “grave,” then later condemned and destroyed Sodom (and the other cities of the plain) for. We know because of Abraham's intercession. It’s a deep valley and before these cities were overturned the Jordan branched out into a delta, watering the earth well and sprouting rich, lush greenery. They were also guilty of the sin of greed. In light of the passage, the most common response to the question "What was the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah?" Parents are cautioned. The threatened rape of the angels is an attempt to inscribe outsiders as queer and therefore not real men… But in attempting to inscribe the outsider as queer the Sodomites are also attempting to inscribe the queer as outsider. Some have argued that rape was the primary sin of Sodom. While most Orthodox Jewish and Christian scholars have held the position that Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed because of their rampant homosexual behavior (namely, sodomy), there are others who believe that those cities were destroyed because of their pride. The story of Sodom and Gomorrah is one of the favorite passages of persons who oppose same-sex behavior. The Lord informed Abraham that “the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous.” Verses 22-33 record Abraham pleading with the Lord … Seeing a neighbor in need and having the ability to help with that need and refusing to do so is showing malicious hatred (Luke 10:30–37, 1 John 3:15–19). And we have the legal term sodomy for unnatural sex acts. Had there been even ten righteous people in the city, God would have spared it (Genesis 18:32). The fact that the men of Sodom so quickly (and unanimously) refused Lot’s offer of his daughters shows that rape could not be the primary sin of the men of Sodom. Try downloading another browser like Chrome or Firefox. Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. They clearly note the reason was due to the sin of the city. Your newsletter signup did not work out. Why were they not counted among the righteous when Abraham pleaded for Sodom (Genesis 18:23-33) and stopped at 10? Other versions, such as the ESV use the terminology “pursued unnatural desire” here. God can and does judge upon the motives of the heart, but he can and does also judge on the physical actions. And they also had Lot living among them, who though weak was described as a righteous man by the Apostle Peter. As Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to fornication and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. But we must keep in mind that God was also ready to show mercy. They had seen him worship God with Melchizedek (Genesis 14:17-20) and refuse to financially benefit from Sodom’s riches (Genesis 14:21-24). They are repeatedly compared with Sodom and Gomorrah in their evildoing and depravity. A third and fourth “sin explanation” has gained popularity in recent years, primarily in liberal Christian scholarship, but it is not deduced from an exegetical reading of Scripture. When you look at passages such as Deuteronomy 32:32-33, Isaiah 3:9-16, Jeremiah 23:14, and Ezekiel 16:49, you see multiple references to Sodom’s (and Israel’s) sin of pride and hatred. Society today is indifferent to sin. Answers in Genesis is an apologetics ministry, dedicated to helping Christians defend their faith and proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ. There were actually more cities destroyed than just Sodom and Gomorrah. At first, this was good and well. About this time the Sodomites grew proud, on account of their riches and great wealth: they became unjust toward men, and impious toward God, insomuch that they did not call to mind the advantages they received from him: they hated strangers and abused themselves with Sodomitical practices.6, Now, when the Sodomites saw the young men to be of beautiful countenances, and this to an extraordinary degree, and that they took up their lodgings with Lot, they resolved themselves to enjoy these beautiful boys by force and violence.7. What city could ever be worse off than Sodom and Gomorrah? Sodom’s sins were pride, gluttony, and laziness, while the poor and needy suffered outside her door. Q. There are far too many examples of pro-isolationism in the Bible to even consider the notion that isolationism was their problem. Although their sins of pride, sexual immorality, inhospitality, and cruelty were committed against other people—ultimately, they were a direct offense against God. Sodom and Gomorrah were so infamous for their immorality that God destroyed them by fire (Genesis 19). From the text of Genesis 19:4-9 though, if rape was the primary sin of Sodom, then the men of the city would have been just as willing to take Lot up on his suggestion to sexually abuse his daughters. Genesis 18:20 KJV And the Lord said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous; The sin committed in these cities and the surrounding cities was crying out to God in heaven. Why did Lot offer up his daughters to be gang raped? They highlight the phrase, “neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy” in Ezekiel 16:49 but completely fail to address Ezekiel 16:50: “And they were haughty and committed abomination before Me; therefore I took them away as I saw fit.” The Hebrew word תועבה tow‘ebah is most often used in the O.T. First, Sodom and Gomorrah were judged because of grave sin. In fact, only Lot and his two daughters survived. From a biblical inerrancy standpoint, the primary outward sin of Sodom and Gomorrah is definitively settled in the book of Jude which states in Jude 1:7, “as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire”. However, two earlier passages are prelude to this. This interpretation of the story of Sodom and Gomorrah seems to make sense when viewed with what the other Biblical writers had to say about it. For those who uphold biblical inerrancy and authority, the answer is obvious—yes! Their refusal to show hospitality and love towards people who were vulnerable. of something morally repugnant and is most frequently translated as “abomination” or a “detestable” act or thing. The SIN of Sodom in short: Ezekiel said, while condemning the people of Jerusalem, shortly before the city was destroyed, Ezekiel explicitly stated the source of Sodom‘s guilt; “behold, this was the iniquity of those sister Sodom, pride, fullness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. The narrative in that chapter makes this claim a weak one. They had no interest in sexual relations with women; only after Lot offered them a heterosexual alternative did they then decide that they would now forcefully seize and rape Lot (“deal worse with you”), and this would have been in contrast to the way they had desired to "deal with them." But is it? What Was the Sin of Sodom and Gomorrah? But, in general, most people just think of Sodom and Gomorrah and they often think that it was destroyed because of homosexuality, which is also not biblical. There were likely many cases of rape in Sodom, but it seems clear that all the men of the city (except Lot, and perhaps his sons-in-law mentioned in verse 14) had become bisexual or preferentially homosexual. Terms of Service apply. God can and does judge upon the motives of the heart, but he can and does also judge on the physical actions. Genesis chapter 18 records the Lord and two angels coming to speak with Abraham. This was highlighted in the attempt of homosexual gang rape, considered a detestable act, but was not limited to this one action. 1 decade ago. Furthermore, if the sin had just been men of Sodom wanting to rape, then why judge the women of the city? Had there been … Notice the wording of this passage in Genesis 19:4–9,3 they wanted Lot to offer them the men (angels in the form of men) as sexual playthings. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/250180760_Women_of_Sodom_and_Gomorrah_Collateral_Damage_in_the_War_against_Homosexuality, Noah’s Flood: a Historical, Global Catastrophe. The story of Sodom and Gomorrah is closely connected to the story of Abraham and his nephew, Lot. All in all, a virtual garden of Eden. Genesis chapter 18 records the Lord and two angels coming to speak with Abraham. But as mentioned above, much of this is based on reading Ezekiel 16:49 in isolation (neglecting the rest of the Bible) and comparing Genesis 19 with other ancient Middle Eastern cultures, ancient Greek cultic prostitution, and even modern Middle Eastern countries. What does the Bible say about homosexuality? It's become popular to claim that the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah was something other than homosexuality. Not all the sins of Sodom and Gomorrah centered around sexual indiscretions. Instead, the overall sin of Sodom and Gomorrah had become so great that fewer than ten righteous people lived in the city. Simply put, even the women of the city were unrighteous and wicked, so the blame cannot simply be on the actions of these men. Why did God allow Lot’s daughters to later have sex with their father? So let’s start with examining that position. Pastors are sometimes said to be preaching "fire and brimstone." What was the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah? This was the real sin of Sodom and Gomorrah. According to the Bible, the answer is any city that ever heard the gospel but still rejected Jesus. Surprisingly, both appeal to Scripture to support their positions, most notably Ezekiel 16:49 and Jude 1:7. So here’s a big question and a tough issue: What was the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah? The earth was rich in nutrients, as well as precious minerals. The Lord informed Abraham that "the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous." 50 They were haughty and did detestable things before meTherefore I did away with them as you have seen. The people of Nineveh were also wicked (Jonah 1:2) and violent (Jonah 3:8) and yet they were spared because they repented of their evil ways and called on God for forgiveness (Jonah 3:10). … What was the sin of the Jordan River his family, the people of Sodom and Gomorrah? place... As “ abomination ” or a “ detestable ” act or thing righteous with the wicked ''... 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