Remember Lot's Wife (Luke 17:32)
In order to understand what Jesus meant, we must look at the historical background to this woman, so we have made four headings;
1. WHO WAS LOT’S WIFE?
Lot, the son of Abram’s brother, had a wife whose name is not given she is known just as “Lot’s wife” and this is how Jesus refered to her.
2. WHAT WERE HER PRIVILEGES?
Lot, “that righteous man” (2 Pet 2:8), married her. If there are those who may wish to marry a righteous man, Lot’s wife had that blessing, apart from being married to Lot, she also lived within the blessings of Abram the first one to receive God’s promise concerning His Kingdom. It is obvious that the prayers of Abram and his blessings were not secret to her.
When she and the people were taken captive by Chedorlaomer, she witnessed how God, through Abram, saved them. She ate the bread and drank wine brought by Melchizedek the king of Salem, who was a shadow of the coming King, Jesus Christ (Gen 14:18 –20. Heb 7; 3 –17).
She would have attended on the two Angels sent by God to destroy Sodom. She was encouraged by the two angels in hurrying Lot, her and her daughters from Sodom so that they would not be destroyed, Gen 19:1-3;12-16. If we set our minds on the privileges of Lot’s wife,, she had a lot.
3. WHAT KIND OF SIN DID SHE COMMITT?
We need to remember the word God spoke to them through the angel, “do not turn back” (Gen .19:17). This statement of God to them was very plain with no need of translation. Church goers when they read this verse they ignore this and claim that the sin she committed was very, very small but the Bible does not say so, but we must understand that sin is a transgression of the law of God 1 John 3:4.
Now in order to get the inner meaning of God from this Verse “ Do not turn back” the Bible says, she started the journey with her husband and two daughters to Zoar, she was happy to have the chance to escape from the destruction, while they were on the journey to Zoar the Bible says, “But Lot’s wife turned back” (Gen 19:26). The word “turned back” probably reveals the inner character of Lot’s wife and her life style in Sodom. She was disobedient to God.
She disbelieved and lacked faith in what God had told her and did not appreciate that without faith it is impossible to please Him (Heb 11:6).
She set her mind on worldly things and so showed a lack of real love of God. Although she directed her face towards Zoar her heart remained in Sodom. The Bible says where your treasure is, there will your heart be also( Matt 6:21), her heart was in Sodom and “ turned back” and reaped the wages of sin.
4 WHY DID GOD PUNISH LOT’S WIFE?
Our God is a God of kindness, mercy, graciousness and love, and forgives sins and is very patient with us. He gave her many priviledges and these should have encouraged her to serve and obey God. God’s kindness is meant to lead to repentance (Rom 2:4). However, those that despise the word bring destruction on themselves (Pro 13:1).
So what did Jesus mean when he said, REMEMBER LOT’S WIFE? Jesus did not say this to the Pharisees, Sadducees and Scribes but he told his friends the beloved disciples Peter, John, James etc, and all who will believe him through them. This is the great warning to all of us. Jesus knew that some of his disciples would not reach the end of their journey as they later turned back (John 6:64-66). There are many brothers and sisters who have been missionaries in one country or more but now they have turned back as did Lot’s wife. There are brothers and sisters who supported the work of God in the starting of their journey but now have turned back, like Lot’s wife. There are those who received privileges when they believed but now have turned back. The Bible say’s “what is a man profited if he shall gain the whole world and lose his own soul” (Matt 16:26).
Lot’s wife had many privileges from God, but perished and there are others who will likewise perish because they turned back. Through this warning to remember Lot’s wife, we have been given a beacon to life so as to understand about our future and to get prepared, as every one of us shall stand before the judgment seat of Jesus Christ to give an account of our stewardship (2Cor 5:10).
Bro Jonathan Nkombe (Sumbwanga, Tanzania)