Lot - The Loser
Lot was Abram’s nephew. Lot’s father died when he was young, so he followed along with his uncle Abram. Lot’s name is not good. You wouldn’t want to be called Lot, for he was a loser. Everything he had in this world he lost it. He had riches, family, cattle, friendship with Abram and friendship with God, but he was a loser.
His problems started when he went down into Egypt with his uncle Abram, because of a famine in Canaan, the promised land. When in Egypt, Lot was spoiled by the sights of all the lush green foods he ate along with the fantastic sights and people-pleasures of Egyptian life. He would have loved to live in Egypt, but that didn’t work out, and it was not the will of God.
When they all returned to Bethel, the place where Abram first settled in the promised land and where he built his first altar to God, there were problems. Abram had so many cattle, and Lot had so many cattle that Abram’s herdsmen and Lot’s herdsmen fought with each other over the pasture needed for their own herds, and Lot also fought with Abram. Things were not good.
Then Abram suggested that they divide their flocks and go their separate ways. Abram said that it was not right to fight with each other as they were family. Abram said to Lot, You choose your place to live and I’ll go the opposite way. If you go to the east, then I will go to the west.
Lot looked around him and saw the plain of Jordan down below in a valley. Because it had a river with water flowing through the valley it was green, almost as green as Egypt. The Bible says it was like Egypt.
So, Lot was moved by his memories of Egypt and chose to live in the plain of the Jordan valley. The Bible also states that “He pitched his tent toward Sodom.” That was going to be a problem. In fact, it was a disaster and Lot became a terrible loser because of this wretched choice to go east and live in the Jordan Valley.
Why did Lot make the wrong choice?
• Lot was fooled by the appearance of the Jordan valley, for it was like Egypt. Egypt got into Lot’s mind and heart. He was in love with it. Even though he came out of Egypt with Abram, Egypt never came out of Lot’s heart.
• Lot didn’t pray for God's guidance. There is no mention of Lot building an altar to call on the name of the Lord, when he got back to Bethel, or when faced with this decision. Lot simply followed his eyes and his greedy heart. He should have asked the Lord to guide him. He should have been humble enough to say, I need to know the mind of God, for I don’t want to lose His blessing. But Lot just followed his own selfish and fleshly senses. He trusted in his own ability to decide. That’s why it went all wrong.
• Selfishly, Lot chose to satisfy his own carnal desires. He gave no thought to how Abram would survive going westward. Lot was thoughtless, careless, and terribly selfish, thinking only of himself.
• Lot pitched his tent toward Sodom. That means that he got as close as possible to live side-by-side with the people of Sodom. He wanted to make friends with them, even though they didn’t know God.
• Lot didn’t know that Sodom was very wicked and was already under God’s judgment. From a distance, the valley looked peaceful and quiet. It looked like a great place to live. In reality, however, Sodom and the surrounding towns were under the rule of a cruel King.
You need to make sure that the world is not in your heart. Don’t make decisions based on the world’s appearance, or its empty promises. It will ruin you.
We need to remember to pray about every decision in life. It is horrible to make mistakes that will ruin us for years and years.
Lot should have followed the JOY rule. Jesus first, others second, yourself third. That is the way to have joy in serving the Lord in every walk of life. The Lord Jesus said, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added unto you” (Matthew 6:33).
It’s a sure recipe for disaster when you give up godly friendships and fall into ungodly friendships with people who don’t know or love God. It is very important for each Christian, to make friends with God’s people. That’s why it’s the Lord’s absolute rule that a Christian should only date or marry a Christian. To disobey that rule is to walk in a path of endless sorrows.
Here are some things that Lot didn’t know.
For 13 years the people in that green valley were in bondage to King Chedorlaomer. So, when Lot chose to live there, he put himself, his
• Lot didn’t know that the people of Sodom and other cities in that valley planned to rebel against King Chedorlaomer. The local people brought the King’s anger by refusing to recognize his rule as King over them. Then King Chedorlaomer sent his powerful armies to crush them.
family, and his herds in terrible danger. Lot walked into a trap and fell prey to danger by befriending people who were at war with that mighty king Chedorlaomer.
The king of Sodom was defeated after being chased into the slime pits, where they became helpless. Poor Lot was living in the midst of all this war and couldn’t do a thing to defend himself. He was carried off as a prisoner along with his goods and his servants. He lost everything. He ended up a prisoner in a little place called Hobat, near the ancient city of Damascus, a long way to the north of the promised land.
Then Lot’s uncle Abram came to the rescue. A survivor of these wars escaped and told Abram that Lot was captured by King Chedorlaomer. What could Abram do? How could he rescue Lot? Well, he took 318 trained men from his own household and armed them with weapons, probably swords, knives, and bows. Abram led them on a secret and swift night-mission to recapture Lot. In the darkness of night, they defeated Lot’s captors in a swift surprise attack.
The bible says that Abram recovered all the goods. He recovered Lot and his goods, along with the women and the people. It was a total victory for Abram, but it was a tough lesson for Lot. He had been a fool. He made a terrible decision to follow his own desires seeking to live in a place that looked like Egypt.
This is a great warning to every Bible reader. Lot’s name in the Bible is a red flag to warn us not to follow the pleasures of this world. We must set ourselves to live for God according to His commands so we may know God’s blessing. Are you doing that? If not, you may be headed for serious trouble.
Sadly, Lot didn’t turn his life around. He didn’t repent and return to God for mercy. The Bible states that he went on living in that valley and he even went to live inside the city of Sodom. How stupid was that? One of the big lessons that will stand to you for life if you learn it now, is this: SIN NEVER MAKES SENSE. People will continue to sin against God even when they know it is wrong and will harm them. Poor Lot was headed for more trouble and for greater condemnation from God.
Don’t follow the ways of Lot! Let the very name of Lot turn on the flashing warning sirens in your head each time you even think about following the world. Don’t do it, for if you live like Lot you will pay a terrible price.
It is better to show your love for God by obeying Him. Jesus said, If ye love me keep my commandments.