Lot’s story is told in Genesis 11—14; 19. He is also mentioned in Deuteronomy 2:9; Luke 17:28–32; 2 Peter 2:7, 8.
When given a choice, his first reaction was to think of himself
Genesis 13:6But the land could not support both Abram and Lot with all their flocks and herds living so close together. There were too many animals for the available pastureland. 7 So an argument broke out between the herdsmen of Abram and Lot. At that time Canaanites and Perizzites were also living in the land. 8Then Abram talked it over with Lot. “This arguing between our herdsmen has got to stop,” he said. “After all, we are close relatives! 9I’ll tell you what we’ll do. Take your choice of any section of the land you want, and we will separate. If you want that area over there, then I’ll stay here. If you want to stay in this area, then I’ll move on to another place.” 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.) 11Lot chose that land for himself—the Jordan Valley to the east of them.
Lot was given first choice of the land even though his uncle Abraham, being older, should have the first say. Yet Lot did not feel bad about it because he was more concerned with what he could get for himself. He was selfish.
The New Testament also warns us against being selfish.
Philipians 2:3 Don’t be selfish; don’t live to make a good impression on others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourself. 4 Don’t think only about your own affairs, but be interested in others, too, and what they are doing.
Are you at the point of making decisions? What factors do you consider when you make those decisions? Are you only thinking of your own interests or do you also consider the interests of others.
Did not consult God before making important decisions and decided based on external observation alone.
Lot looked at the fertile plains of the Jordan Valley and saw that it was well watered everywhere, and decided to choose the land for himself. To his natural eye, the decision was correct but in God’s eyes the decision was very wrong. That area contains Sodom and Gomorrah, places which God would later destroy because of their sins. Lot could have avoided making this wrong decision if he had consulted God first.
Do you have important decisions just ahead of you? If so, commit them to God and ask Him to show you things that are not visible to your human senses. Ask Him to help you to make the right decision.
2 Chron 26:5 Uzziah sought God during the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God. And as long as the king sought the Lord, God gave him success.
Tried to do the right thing in the wrong way
Genesis 19:1 That evening the two angels came to the entrance of the city of Sodom, and Lot was sitting there as they arrived. When he saw them, he stood up to meet them. Then he welcomed them and bowed low to the ground. 2 “My lords,” he said, “come to my home to wash your feet, and be my guests for the night. You may then get up in the morning as early as you like and be on your way again.” “Oh no,” they said, “we’ll just spend the night out here in the city square.” 3 But Lot insisted, so at last they went home with him. He set a great feast before them, complete with fresh bread made without yeast. After the meal, 4 as they were preparing to retire for the night, all the men of Sodom, young and old, came from all over the city and surrounded the house. 5 They shouted to Lot, “Where are the men who came to spend the night with you? Bring them out so we can have sex with them.” 6Lot stepped outside to talk to them, shutting the door behind him. 7″Please, my brothers,” he begged, “don’t do such a wicked thing. 8 Look—I have two virgin daughters. Do with them as you wish, but leave these men alone, for they are under my protection.”
Although it was the custom of the day to protect guests at any cost, how could any father give his daughters to be ravished by a mob of perverts, just to protect two strangers? Possibly Lot was scheming to save both the girls and the visitors, hoping the girls’ fiancés would rescue them or that the homosexual men would be disinterested in the girls and simply go away.
Nevertheless, this terrible suggestion reveals how deeply sin had been absorbed into Lot’s life. Although he tried to do the right thing, saving his guests, the evil influence that had been absorbed into his life caused him to think of solving the problem by an equally perverted way.
It is not just enough to have good motives, it is also important to have good methods. For example, we may want to do well in our job so that we can have a good salary to give to God’s work. But are we using the right methods to do well in our job? Let’s give as much emphasis to methods as we do to motives.