Presentation on theme: "Abraham Intercedes with the LORD Jehovah for Sodom and Gomorrah"— Presentation transcript:
1 Abraham Intercedes with the LORD Jehovah for Sodom and Gomorrah Genesis 18:20-33Abraham Intercedes with the LORD Jehovah for Sodom and Gomorrah
2 Genesis 18:20-2120 Then the Lord said, “The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous 21 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.”
3 Genesis 18:20-21Q: What does the LORD mean by ‘outcry’? And how had the outcry reached to Him in heaven? Q: Outcry of revelry, drunkenness, homosexual and heterosexual orgy, and partying? Q: Outcry of those who suffer physical, emotional and mental abuse at the hands of sinful people who are involved in these activities?
4 Genesis 18:20-22“God did not actually say, in so many words, that He intended to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah. He merely said that the ‘outcry’ over their wickedness was great, and that He intended to ‘go down’ and ascertain the situation right on the spot. In the same way, He earlier had ‘come down’ to Babel, to see the rebellion there. It was not, of course, that God could not know the full facts without actually going down into the city, since He is omniscient. He no doubt did this for appearance’ sake, that men might know directly that God had actually seen the full situation before He acted in judgment.” (Morris, p. 342)
5 Genesis 18:20-22Q: Do these verses describe the situation we live in today?America has been blessed by GodAmerica has had the Christian gospel preached for 400 years. The Puritans fled persecution in Europe to come here, in order to worship freely as ChristiansMankind has rejected Christianity, and ‘descending into a morass of corruption and wickedness even greater than that of the pagan world before Christ.”He has assured mankind, through His Word, that there will be judgment coming soon
6 Romans 1:18-3218 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.
7 Romans 1:18-3222 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four- footed animals and creeping things. 24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, 25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.
8 Romans 1:18-3226 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due. 28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting;
9 Romans 1:18-3229 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; 32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.
10 Intercessory PrayerIntercessory prayers should be made for lost men, for the consistent witness to them, warning them of the wrath to come.
11 Genesis 18:20-22It is vital that we witness to the next generations, and encourage them to keep the Word and the way and the testimony concerning Jesus Christ.As these two men [angels] leave for the valley, Abraham sensed that destruction was ordained for all of the cities of the valley.Instead of heading back home to Sarah, he felt constrained to remain in the LORD’s presence and make intercession for those in these cities
12 What about Intercessory Prayer? Does the LORD hear and answer prayer? Genesis 18:22What about Intercessory Prayer?Does the LORD hear and answer prayer?
13 Genesis 18:2222 The [two angels] men turned away and went toward Sodom, but Abraham remained standing before the Lord.
14 Genesis 18:20-22Q: Why is Abraham constrained to remain there? Q: Is it to pray for Lot and his family? Apparently not, because Lot is not named in the intercession Q: Is it because the LORD had just told him he would be the instrument of righteousness to his family, and to all the world? Apparently not. While he had delivered Lot in war, and returned the stuff to the King of Sodom, and the enemies had withdrawn, Abraham appears to focus on all of the individual people who he sensed would soon perish
15 Genesis 18:20-22Q: Did Abraham appeal to the unconditional covenant of grace that Jehovah had given to him (Genesis 17 with the sign being circumcision)? No. It is solely on the basis of the justice of God alone that Abraham argues. “Should the Judge of all the earth destroy the righteous with the wicked?” (18:23) He is lead to intercede ‘..by the love which springs from the consciousness that one’s own preservation and rescue are due to compassionate grace alone; love, too, which cannot conceive of the guilt of others as too great for salvation to be possible. This sympathetic love, springing from the faith which was counted for righteousness, impelled him to the intercession.’ (K & D, p. 231)
16 Genesis 18:20-22Luke 11:1, 5, 8 – “(1) Lord, teach us to pray…”Our Father which art in heaven…” (5) Suppose one of you shall have a friend, and go to him at midnight”… (8) I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, yet because of his persistence, he will get up and give him as much as he needs. And I say to you, ask, and it shall be given to you; seek and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you…”
17 Genesis 18:20-22The ‘essence of true prayer’ bridges over the infinite distance of the creature from the Creator, appeals with importunity to the heart of God, and ceases not till its point is gained. This would indeed be neither permissible nor possible, had not God, by virtue of the mysterious interlacing of necessity and freedom in His nature and operations, granted a power to the prayer of faith, to which He consents to yield…
18 Genesis 18:20-22…Had He not, by virtue of His absoluteness, which is anything but blind necessity, placed Himself in such a relation to men, that He not merely works upon them by means of His grace, but allows them to work upon Him by means of their faith; had He not interwoven the life of the free creature into His own absolute life, and accorded to a created personality the right to assert itself in faith, in distinction from His own”
19 Genesis 18:20-22“With the promise, that even for the sake of ten righteous He would not destroy the city, Jehovah ‘went His way’ – that is, He vanished. Abraham returned to his home, at the grove of Mamre The judgment which fell upon the wicked cities immediately afterwards proves that there were not ten ‘righteous persons’ in Sodom; by which we understand, not merely ten sinless or holy men, but ten who through the fear of God and conscientiousness had kept themselves free from the prevailing sin and iniquity of these cities” (K & D, vol 1, p. 232)
20 Abraham intercedes for the cities of the Plain Genesis 18:23-26Abraham intercedes for the cities of the Plain
21 Genesis 18:23-2623 Then Abraham approached him and said: “Will you sweep away the righteous with the wicked?24 What if there are fifty righteous people in the city? Will you really sweep it away and not spare the place for the sake of the fifty righteous people in it? 25 Far be it from you to do such a thing—to kill the righteous with the wicked, treating the righteous and the wicked alike. Far be it from you! Will not the Judge of all the earth do right?” 26 The Lord said, “If I find fifty righteous people in the city of Sodom, I will spare the whole place for their sake.”
22 Genesis 18:27-27 Then Abraham spoke up again: “Now that I have been so bold as to speak to the Lord, though I am nothing but dust and ashes, 28 what if the number of the righteous is five less than fifty? Will you destroy the whole city for lack of five people?” “If I find forty-five there,” he said, “I will not destroy it.” 29 Once again he spoke to him, “What if only forty are found there?” He said, “For the sake of forty, I will not do it.”
23 Genesis 18:23-3330 Then he said, “May the Lord not be angry, but let me speak. What if only thirty can be found there?” He answered, “I will not do it if I find thirty there.” 31 Abraham said, “Now that I have been so bold as to speak to the Lord, what if only twenty can be found there?” He said, “For the sake of twenty, I will not destroy it.”
24 Genesis 18:23-3332 Then he said, “May the Lord not be angry, but let me speak just once more. What if only ten can be found there?” He answered, “For the sake of ten, I will not destroy it.” 33 When the Lord had finished speaking with Abraham, he left [vanished?], and Abraham returned home.
25 Intercessory PrayerQ: What can we learn from Abraham’s intercessory prayer?
26 Genesis 18God does not want to bring judgment on any city or any person/sGod responds to the prayers of those who intercede, if there is any basis at all within the framework of His holiness and justice to enable Him to do soThe remarkable influence which even a tiny minority may have for good is noteworthyOnly ten godly people in the corrupt city of Sodom would have been enough to spare it from destruction
27 Genesis 18Ministry is not useless, no matter how few we are able to reach for the Lord.Abraham’s prayer is reverent, but persistent (Luke 11)Abraham’s prayer is definite, and specificThe prayer continually recognized and appealed to the righteous character and loving-kindness of God as the basis for making the request.
28 Genesis 18To be heard and answered, our prayers must be in conformity with the revealed will and character of God, as well as reverent, specific, and persevering (Morris, p. 344, edited)
29 Genesis 18Q: Did Abraham believe there were 10 righteous people in Sodom? Yes! Lot, his wife, and at least 8 family members
30 Genesis 18 Lot and his wife Lot’s two sons (Genesis 19:12 ‘sons’ is plural – at least 2)Lot’s two married daughters and one husband (only one is mentioned in Genesis 19:12 and ‘daughters’ is plural – at least 2 were married---or at least engaged, perhaps more than 2 were there)Two unmarried daughters (who escape, Genesis 19:8)
31 Genesis 18Q: But if there were married daughters, wouldn’t Lot have warned them to flee (v. 14)? It sounds like the two daughters were engaged to marry, and these two men are called ‘sons-in-law.’ Whether or not they were actually married (as we understand it---consummated---is unclear).
32 Genesis 18Q: What would God have done if Abraham had not stopped at ten, and went down to four? A: There is no way of knowing. Four is the actual number taken by the angels from Sodom to Zoar Abraham may not have been close enough to Lot to know that his family was unregenerate and were part of the moral problems in Sodom “The judge of all the earth would do right” and Abraham left it at that! Abraham trusted His judgment!