SODOM AND GOMORRAH
The story of Sodom and Gomorrah has been used by people to condemn gays. The argument used by them is that God destroyed these cities because the people of these cities were homosexuals. In this section we will show conclusive BIBLICAL evidence that Sodom and Gomorrah were NOT destroyed because of homosexuals. The only book I will use to show this is the Bible. The Bible does not contradict itself because the it is the Word of God and God is not fickle.
The beginning of this story is found in Genesis 13:
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. (NIV)
Abraham and Lot were so wealthy that they had to separate because the land could not support both of them with all their family members, herds, and workers in one place Lot chose to move his family to the twin cities.
The next time we hear about these cities is in Genesis 18:16-33. Here God tells Abraham his plan for Sodom and Gomorrah.
Then the LORD said, "The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous that I will go down and see if what they have done is as bad as the outcry that has reached me. If not, I will know." (NIV)
Abraham pleads for these cities because of his nephew Lot. While Abraham and God were talking, the other two angels go to Sodom. Let's read for ourselves what really happened that day:
The two angels arrived at Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gateway of the city. When he saw them, he got up to meet them and bowed down with his face to the ground. "My lords," he said, "please turn aside to your servant's house. You can wash your feet and spend the night and then go on your way early in the morning." "No," they answered, "we will spend the night in the square." But he insisted so strongly that they did go with him and entered his house. He prepared a meal for them, baking bread without yeast, and they ate.
Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom both young and old-- surrounded the house. They called to Lot, "Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them." Lot went outside to meet them and shut the door behind him and said, "No, my friends. Don't do this wicked thing. Look, I have two daughters who have never slept with a man. Let me bring them out to you, and you can do what you like with them. But don't do anything to these men, for they have come under the protection of my roof." "Get out of our way," they replied. And they said, "This fellow came here as an alien, and now he wants to play the judge! We'll treat you worse than them." They kept bringing pressure on Lot and moved forward to break down the door. But the men inside reached out and pulled Lot back into the house and shut the door. Then they struck the men who were at the door of the house, young and old, with blindness so that they could not find the door. The two men said to Lot, "Do you have anyone else here--sons-in- law, sons or daughters, or anyone else in the city who belongs to you? Get them out of here, because we are going to destroy this place. The outcry to the LORD against its people is so great that he has sent us to destroy it." (NIV)
There are several major holes in the theory that Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed because of homosexuality. First, The idea that "all" the men of Sodom were gay is ridiculous. For one thing, Lot's daughters were pledged to be married to men of Sodom. Second, if all the men were homosexuals, why did Lot offer his daughters to appease them? What good would it do to offer a gay man a woman to have sex with? Finally, these people threatened Lot. If he didn't comply with their wishes they said they would do WORSE to him that to the two visitors. They were also trying to force the door down. They were obviously violent and they were trying to get at two unwilling guests. Whenever you mix sex with violence against an unwilling person you do not have homosexuality, you have RAPE.
There is another story in the Bible in which the same thing happened:
. Judges 19:13-27
He added, "Come, let's try to reach Gibeah or Ramah and spend the night in one of those places." So they went on, and the sun set as they neared Gibeah in Benjamin. There they stopped to spend the night. They went and sat in the city square, but no one took them into his home for the night. That evening an old man from the hill country of Ephraim, who was living in Gibeah (the men of the place were Benjamites), came in from his work in the fields. When he looked and saw the traveler in the city square, the old man asked, "Where are you going? Where did you come from?" He answered, "We are on our way from Bethlehem in Judah to a remote area in the hill country of Ephraim where I live. I have been to Bethlehem in Judah and now I am going to the house of the LORD. No one has taken me into his house. We have both straw and fodder for our donkeys and bread and wine for ourselves your servants-- me, your maidservant, and the young man with us. We don't need anything." "You are welcome at my house," the old man said. "Let me supply whatever you need. Only don't spend the night in the square." So he took him into his house and fed his donkeys. After they had washed their feet, they had something to eat and drink.
While they were enjoying themselves, some of the wicked men of the city surrounded the house. Pounding on the door, they shouted to the old man who owned the house, "Bring out the man who came to your house so we can have sex with him." The owner of the house went outside and said to them, "No, my friends, don't be so vile. Since this man is my guest, don't do this disgraceful thing. Look, here is my virgin daughter, and his concubine. I will bring them out to you now, and you can use them and do to them whatever you wish. But to this man, don't do such a disgraceful thing." But the men would not listen to him. So the man took his concubine and sent her outside to them, and they raped her and abused her throughout the night, and at dawn they let her go. At daybreak the woman went back to the house where her master was staying, fell down at the door and lay there until daylight. When her master got up in the morning and opened the door of the house and stepped out to continue on his way, there lay his concubine, fallen in the doorway of the house, with her hands on the threshold. (NIV)
Notice the similarity in the stories. Compare Genesis 19:4,5 with Judges 19:22.
Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom-- both young and old-- surrounded the house. They called to Lot, "Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them."
While they were enjoying themselves, some of the wicked men of the city surrounded the house. Pounding on the door, they shouted to the old man who owned the house, "Bring out the man who came to your house so we can have sex with him."
In the account in Judges the wicked men were appeased with the female concubine. This proves they were not homosexuals. They were after sex for power or rape. If you read further you'll learn that the tribe of Benjamin was almost totally destroyed because of this incident. Neither the tribe of Benjamin nor the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah were punished because of homosexuality. Both of these accounts clearly describe rape. What the men of Sodom were going to do to the angels in Genesis was what the men of Gibeah did to the traveler's concubine in Judges.
Why were Sodom and Gomorrah destroyed? What were the grievous sins that God judged them worthy of such destruction? What was the great outcry God was referring to in Genesis chapter 18? We don't need to wonder. The Bible tells us exactly why these cities were destroyed.
As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign LORD, your sister Sodom and her daughters never did what you and your daughters have done. "'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. They were haughty and did detestable things before me. Therefore I did away with them as you have seen. (NIV)
Ezekiel Chapter 16 is an allegory God used to compare unfaithful Jerusalem to an adulterous wife for committing religious adultery. As you can see God listed the sins of Sodom. No homosexuality is listed there. Those detestable or abominable acts mentioned refereed to the religious rituals popular in that time. We will cover these in the section on false gods.
Your children who follow you in later generations and foreigners who come from distant lands will see the calamities that have fallen on the land and the diseases with which the LORD has afflicted it. The whole land will be a burning waste of salt and sulfur-- nothing planted, nothing sprouting, no vegetation growing on it. It will be like the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, Admah and Zeboiim, which the LORD overthrew in fierce anger.
All the nations will ask: "Why has the LORD done this to this land? Why this fierce, burning anger?" And the answer will be: "It is because this people abandoned the covenant of the LORD, the God of their fathers, the covenant he made with them when he brought them out of Egypt. They went off and worshiped other gods and bowed down to them, gods they did not know, gods he had not given them. (NIV)
Moses was about to die and he predicted the scattering of Israel and the destruction of the land like the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. This destruction of Israel was not prophesied because of homosexuality but because of religious infidelity. This is quite in line with the context of the entire Bible. Of course God promises their restoration in Deuteronomy chapter 30. This complete restoration is about to happen in the end times, but that is another study.
"I overthrew some of you as I overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah. You were like a burning stick snatched from the fire, yet you have not returned to me," declares the LORD. (NIV)
If you read the book of Amos you find that God promises to overthrow Israel as He overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah for three things: turning away from God which is religious unfaithfulness, being evil to the poor and living selfishly. Homosexuality is not even addressed.
"Among the prophets of Samaria I saw this repulsive thing: They prophesied by Baal and led my people Israel astray. And among the prophets of Jerusalem I have seen something horrible: They commit adultery and live a lie. They strengthen the hands of evildoers, so that no one turns from his wickedness. They are all like Sodom to me; the people of Jerusalem are like Gomorrah." (NIV)
Here is yet another comparison of the promised judgment of Israel to the judgment of Sodom and Gomorrah. Once again the theme is religious unfaithfulness, not homosexuality.
"Whatever town or village you enter, search for some worthy person there and stay at his house until you leave. As you enter the home, give it your greeting. If the home is deserving, let your peace rest on it; if it is not, let your peace return to you. If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, shake the dust off your feet when you leave that home or town. I tell you the truth, it will be more bearable for Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town. (NIV)
Here, Jesus Christ compares the sin of Sodom to the sin of faithlessness in people who reject the Gospel and inhospitality.
Then Jesus began to denounce the cities in which most of his miracles had been performed, because they did not repent. "Woe to you, Korazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you. And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted up to the skies? No, you will go down to the depths. If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Sodom, it would have remained to this day. But I tell you that it will be more bearable for Sodom on the day of judgment than for you." (NIV)
Here the Lord again makes reference to Sodom's destruction as he talks about unrepentant cities that refuse to believe in him or his miracles. This is about religious unfaithfulness and unbelief, not homosexuality.
If you don't know Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, you can know him right now. Don't be guilty of not believing in Him. Here is what Jesus himself said:
"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son. (NIV)
Notice that Jesus said WHOEVER believes in him shall have eternal life. The condemnation is reserved for WHOEVER does not believe in Him. He made no mention of homosexuals in this passage.
If you recognize that you are a sinner and need Jesus to be the Lord of your life then it is a very simple process. Ask God to forgive you of whatever has separated you from Him. That is what sin is. When you ask Him that he will forgive you:
I John 1:9-10
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives. (NIV)
According to Romans 10:9,10 all you have to do is:
...confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. (NIV)
At the end of this article is a simple sample prayer that you can pray. There is also some other information you will want if it is your desire to receive Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior.
If you have known Jesus as your Lord and Savior but felt you had to walk away because you are gay, come back to Him. He has never left you. Repent of whatever you have done to hurt yourself, others and God. He is just waiting for you with open arms. He understands it was all a misunderstanding. His love never fails.
O continue thy lovingkindness unto them that know thee; and thy righteousness to the upright in heart. Let not the foot of pride come against me, and let not the hand of the wicked remove me. There are the workers of iniquity fallen: they are cast down, and shall not be able to rise. (KJV)
Within your temple, O God, we meditate on your unfailing love. (NIV)
Give your heart back to Him and tell us about it. At the end of this article is some information for you if you have decided to rededicate your life back to God.