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Studies on the Women of the Bible
by Davis W. Huckabee

Chapter 3
LOT’S WIFE


Reference is made to this unnamed woman in Genesis 19:12-26, with one brief citation of her in the New Testament. In the record of the genealogy of Abraham and his relatives in Genesis 11:26-32 reference is made to Lot in passing but nothing is said of him being married at this time. Possibly he married later during his travels with Abraham, or even after their separation one from another. Lot himself was not the great believer that Abraham was, and, but for the testimony of Scripture in  Peter 2:7-9 we would not even know that he was a saved man, so worldly was his life style. But this passage is clear that he was a justified man. “And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conver­sation (conduct or lifestyle) of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds.)”

It would seem that so long as Lot maintained his pilgrim character and lived out upon the hills as he followed his flocks, he lived a more godly life. But when the land would no more support the herds of both Lot and Abraham, and Uncle Abraham gave him the choice of the land, he chose the well watered pastures around the wicked cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, (Gen. 13:5-13). Here was when Lot’s problems began, and he either obtained a wife from here, or, if he was already married, his wife was affected by the wicked inhabitants of these cities.

It seems clear from Abraham’s intercession for these cities that Lot and his wife had at least eight adult children, for when the Lord announced the coming destruction of the cities of the plain Abraham began to plead for the cities. First he asked if God would forbear destroying the cities if fifty righteous persons could be found there, and he gradually reduced the number to only ten. Abraham had God’s own witness that he raised his own household properly, (Gen. 18:19), and Abraham assumed that his nephew was doing so as well. In the narrative that follows in Genesis 19 we learn that Lot had sons-in-law (plural) though he had no influence with them, (Gen. 19:14), so that these and his daughters that married them would have been four in number. Lot is asked in verse 12 about his “sons” (plural) so that he had at least two of these, then there were two virgin daughters, (Gen. 19:8), which would add up to eight in his household. With Lot and his wife this would bring the total to ten, which is the number at which Abraham left off in his intercessions for the cities, (Gen. 18:23-32). But of all these apparently only Lot was a truly righteous person.

When the morning comes, the two angels announce that they cannot do their destructive work upon the cities of the plain while Lot and his wife and two daughters remain in the city, and they have to forcibly remove them, (Gen. 19:15-16). It seems most significant that the angels are said to have compelled the women for Lot’s sake, “the Lord being merciful unto him.”

And as the four of them flee from the beginning destruction, which seems to have come both from above and below, Lot’s wife shows where her heart really is. She turns and looks back in spite of the angel’s warning to not do so, and is turned into a pillar of salt. Josephus the Jewish historian, claims that this pillar of salt was still standing in his day (the first century A. D.). The Lord Jesus in His warnings about the last days of this age when He shall come in sudden judgment, cites Lot’s wife by saying, “Remember Lot’s wife,” ( Luke 17:32).

The deleterious effects of living among the wicked people of the cities of the plain is to be seen in the two daughters of Lot after they have escaped this destruction. They apparently thought that this destruction has been nationwide if not worldwide, for they get their father drunk and lay with him so that both conceived sons by this incestuous relationship, (Gen. 19:30-38). The descendents of these two were antagonists to the Jews for centuries thereafter. One wonders if Lot, in looking back from this point in time, was made to wonder if choosing the well-watered plains around Sodom and Gomorrah was worth what it cost him.

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