Being Good Is Good, But Not Good Enough!

Living morally in an immoral culture is good, but not good enough.

Praying for God’s intervention is good, but not good enough.

Cursing the darkness where we live or in another area is useless.

Running away because we cannot fathom God intervening is not an option. Unless God says it is time to go!

Lot, his wife and two daughters were godly, righteous intercessors in the region of Sodom and Gomorrah.

You may say, “Kevin, what in the world are you talking about? Don’t you know that Lot and his family were people who compromised their core values? Or worse, “Don’t you realize that they were not that committed to God in the first place?”

Lot’s daughters were still virgins even though they were engaged to be married. The Scripture says that Lot had sons-in-law so these men were considered part of the family even though they had not yet married his daughters. Unfortunately these sons-in-law did not believe Lot when he told them to flee the city and they were consumed in the judgment that came [Genesis 19].

Let’s look at Lot and his wife with a fresh set of eyes!

Lot’s name means “a covering”. It comes from a root word that means “to envelop, to wrap closely”. We use the word “cover” when we talk about praying for people don’t we? “I will cover you [them, that] in prayer.”

Genesis 19 [NASB] ~

23 The sun had risen over the earth when Lot came to Zoar. 24 Then the LORD rained on Sodom and Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven, 25 and He overthrew those cities, and all the valley, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the ground. 26 But his wife, from behind him, looked back, and she became a pillar of salt.

Verse 26 is very telling. It says that Lot’s wife could not let go even though God had told them to let go and she was preserved for all time as a preserver – salt!

Lot’s wife was not turned to ash.

She was turned to salt!

We know that salt was an effective preserver.

Look at this one phrase in this verse ~ “. . . . . and she became a pillar of salt.” There is a principle in Scripture that a person can only become what God calls them. Jesus said, “You are the light of the world! You are the salt of the earth!” She became salt because God said she was salt, and she will always be remembered as salt. In fact, she became a pillar of salt.

A pillar is a person or thing regarded as reliably providing essential support for something [someone] else, or something [someone] important. In the Hebrew the root word for “pillar” means “to take a stand, to be set over, and to establish.”

Remember, Lot’s name means a covering!

We do not know what Lot’s wife’s name is do we? Have you ever thought about why we do not know some wives names and others we do know? I often wondered about that so one day I asked the Lord. I feel like the answer I got was we don’t know their name because all of their identity was in their husband. Now, if that is true, then we can find out a lot about Lot’s wife through her husband’s identity.

2 Peter 2:6-8 [GWT] ~ 6God condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah and destroyed them by burning them to ashes. He made those cities an example to ungodly people of what is going to happen to them. 7Yet, God rescued Lot, a man who had his approval. Lot was distressed by the lifestyle of people who had no principles and lived in sexual freedom. 8Although he was a man who had God’s approval, he lived among the people of Sodom and Gomorrah. Each day was like torture to him as he saw and heard the immoral things that people did.

Lot had God’s approval!

Lot had God’s approval!

Lot’s wife had God’s approval as well!

Lot’s wife made two very bad mistakes ~

  • She could not let go when God told her to.  God said, “Go!” She said, “No!”
    • It’s not a good plan to disagree with God, no matter how well the intentions are.”
  • She was behind her husband, not beside him where she was created and supposed to be.
    • This led to their daughters diminishing their call of purity which led to not trusting God and eventually incest. [Genesis 19:30ff]
      • In fairness to Lot’s wife Lot struggled with leaving as well. He had to be forced to leave!
        • Genesis 19:15, 16 ~ “When morning dawned, the angels urged Lot, saying, “Up, take your wife and your two daughters who are here, or you will be swept away in the punishment of the city.” But he hesitated. So the men seized his hand and the hand of his wife and the hands of his two daughters, for the compassion of the LORD was upon him; and they brought him out, and put him outside the city.”
          • God is merciful to those who are merciful.

Now lets take a look at Lot from this account in the Book of Genesis.

Genesis 13:10-13 [NLT]

10 Lot took a long look at the fertile plains of the Jordan Valley in the direction of Zoar. The whole area was well watered everywhere, like the garden of the LORD or the beautiful land of Egypt. (This was before the LORD had destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.) 11 Lot chose that land for himself – the Jordan Valley to the east of them. He went there with his flocks and servants and parted company with his uncle Abram. 12 So while Abram stayed in the land of Canaan, Lot moved his tents to a place near Sodom, among the cities of the plain. 13 The people of this area were unusually wicked and sinned greatly against the LORD.”

I know that Lot has gotten a bad rap over the years. In fact, I used to be one who piled on the criticism for his life choices. But let’s take a close look at what the text says in Genesis 13, in the light of what we saw Peter had to say about him.

  • Verse 10~ Lot took a long look at the fertile plains of the Jordan Valley in the direction of Zoar.
    • On the surface we may think he was materialistic and did not want to have to work very hard to be successful, but is that what really happened?
    • Zoar means “insignificance”. It comes from a root word that means “to grow insignificant, to grow small”.
      • The region of Zoar was in a downward spiral. They were going backwards and losing their significance.
  • Verse 10~ The whole area was well watered everywhere, like the garden of the Lord or the beautiful land of Egypt.
    • Again, on the surface this seems like Lot was selfish and wanted an easy life.
      • I want to propose that this is not what was happening at all. I believe Lot was drawn to the area because he and his family were intercessors and saw in the landscape a perfect picture where they could visualize what they were believing God to do in the region – which was to restore it to its original blueprint like the Garden of Eden before the fall.
    • On the outside, or on the surface, Zoar looked good. It had the appearance of being alive but there was decay happening on the inside.
    • Prophetic intercessors are drawn to places that need God to intervene!
      • As intercessors they believed they could make a difference in seeing the region transformed by God. They believed they could take a stand to see the region reverse its trend toward insignificance and gain their rightful place as a significant kingdom society.
        • Prophetic people can see past the obvious “dirt” and find the gold.
          • I believe Lot and his family were drawn to the region to mine for gold.
  • Verse 11~ Lot chose that land for himself – the Jordan Valley to the east of them. He went there with his flocks and servants and parted company with his uncle Abram.
    • Here again on the surface Lot seems selfish – “he chose that land for himself.”
    • To me he is taking personal responsibility for the region’s transformation. He seems to be saying, “this slide into the abyss will not continue on my watch.” What a wonderful picture of a faithful man of God!
    • Lot parted company with his uncle Abram.
      • Lot was not called to Canaan, Abram was!
      • We cannot compare our call with someone else’s call and say because it is different it is less important.
  • Verse 12~ So while Abram stayed in the land of Canaan, Lot moved his tents to a place near Sodom, among the cities of the plain.
    • Abram stayed in the land of Canaan because that is where God told him to go and settle.
    • Lot moved his tents to a place near Sodom, among the cities of the plain.
      • Lot got close enough to the sewer to keep his intercessory eye on it without it adversely affecting him and his family.
  • Verse 13~ The people of this area were unusually wicked and sinned greatly against the LORD.
    • So when some people see only the problem Lot saw a great challenge and opportunity for God to intervene and change the course of that region’s future.

They gave it their best shot to be kind, loving, understanding and a good representation of a godly family in the midst of immoral people. They stayed and they prayed!

But according to Jesus that was not good enough. Listen to these sobering words from the One who visited the area before devastating it.

Matthew 11 [NASB]

23 “And you, Capernaum, will not be exalted to heaven, will you? You will descend to Hades; for if the miracles had occurred in Sodom which occurred in you, it would have remained to this day. 24 “Nevertheless I say to you that it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for you.”

This is J. P. Greene’s Literal Translation of Matthew 11:23-24 ~ 23 And you, Capernaum, who “have been exalted to the heaven, you will be thrown down to Hades.” For if the powerful acts happening in you had taken place in Sodom, it would remain until today. 24 But I say to you, It will be more bearable for the land of Sodom in Judgment Day than for you.

Jesus is unequivocally stating that a lack of miracles helped contribute to the decay of the society in Sodom and Gomorrah. Jesus was also saying that Sodom never experienced heaven on earth like Capernaum was experiencing in the life and ministry of Jesus Christ of Nazareth. Capernaum was Peter’s hometown and it was the main base of operations for Jesus and His disciples for two thirds of His earthly ministry. He pronounced such a great judgment on them because of the level of anointing and power that they witnessed and experienced. To whom much is given much is required.

Imagine Sodom, Gomorrah and the region of Zoar turning to God because they experienced the miraculous at such a high level. They never had a chance – Lot and his family were good, just not good enough.

Lot and his family lived in what I like to call “Jesusianity”. This is the law-abiding, ethical and moral lifestyle of Jesus before the River Jordan water and Spirit baptism. That was good. In fact, it was very good. It was just not good enough because God did not release Jesus to start Christianity until He fulfilled all righteousness – getting baptized in water and in the Holy Spirit.

Jesus was a moral man prior to the Jordan River experience. Afterwards, He was a moral and mighty man. Christianity is both moral and mighty, pure and powerful.

Acts 10:38 NCV says this, “You know about Jesus from Nazareth, that God gave him the Holy Spirit and power. You know how Jesus went everywhere doing good and healing those who were ruled by the devil, because God was with him.”

I believe Jesus went about doing good before the Jordan River. It was only afterward that He became the Christ, the One anointed with the Holy Spirit and power who healed all those who were ruled by the devil. How was this possible? Because God was with Him. So does that mean that God was not with Him prior to the Jordan experience? No! It does however mean that God was not with Him in anointing and power. That is what separates Christianity from Jesusianity.

The world – the Sodoms, Gomorrahs and Zoars of this world desperately need an encounter with the moral and mighty, pure and powerful Christians.

For HIS Glory!

Dr. Kevin M. Drury
A Hisstorymaker

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