From Eternity Past


Chapter 14—The Sin of Sodom and Gomorrah

This chapter is based on Genesis 19.

Among the cities of the Jordan valley Sodom was “as the garden of the Lord” (Genesis 13:10) in its fertility and beauty. Rich harvests clothed the fields, and flocks and herds covered the encircling hills. Art and commerce enriched the proud city. The treasures of the East adorned her palaces, and caravans brought stores of precious things to her marts of trade. With little thought or labor, every want of life could be supplied. EP 98.1

Idleness and riches make the heart hard that has never been oppressed by want or burdened by sorrow. The people gave themselves up to sensual indulgence. “This was the iniquity of thy 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. And they were haughty, and committed abomination before Me; therefore I took them away as I saw good.” Ezekiel 16:49, 50. Satan is never more successful than when he comes to men in their idle hours. EP 98.2

In Sodom there was mirth, revelry, feasting, and drunkenness. The vilest passions were unrestrained. People openly defied God and His law and delighted in violence. Though they had before them the example of the antediluvian world and knew of their destruction, they followed the same course of wickedness. EP 98.3

At the time of Lot's removal to Sodom, corruption had not become universal, and God in mercy permitted rays of light to shine amid the moral darkness. Abraham was not a stranger to the people of Sodom, and his victory over greatly superior forces excited wonder and admiration. None could avoid the conviction that a divine power had made him conqueror. His noble and unselfish spirit, so foreign to the self-seeking inhabitants of Sodom, was another evidence of the superiority of the religion he had honored. God was speaking to that people by His providence, but the last ray of light was rejected as all before had been. EP 98.4

Now the last night of Sodom was approaching. But men perceived it not. While angels drew near on their mission of destruction, men were dreaming of prosperity and pleasure. The last day was like every other that had come and gone. A landscape of unrivaled beauty was bathed in the rays of the declining sun. Pleasure-seeking throngs were passing to and fro, intent upon the enjoyment of the hour. EP 99.1

In the twilight, two strangers drew near to the city gate. None could discern in those wayfarers the mighty heralds of divine judgment. The careless multitude little dreamed that in their treatment of these heavenly messengers that very night they would reach the climax of guilt which doomed their city. EP 99.2