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The Oxford Study Bible Study Bible supplemented with commentary from scholars of various religions.

Chapter 19

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1The two angels came to Sodom in the evening while Lot was sitting by the city gate. When he saw them, he rose to meet them and bowing low 2he said, ‘I pray you, sirs, turn aside to your servant's house to spend the night there and bathe your feet. You can continue your journey in the morning.’ ‘No,’ they answered, ‘we shall spend the night in the street.’ 3But Lot was so insistent that they accompanied him into his house. He prepared a meal for them, baking unleavened bread for them to eat.

4Before they had lain down to sleep, the men of Sodom, both young and old, everyone without exception, surrounded the house. 5They called to Lot: ‘Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we may have intercourse with them.’ 6Lot went out into the doorway to them, and, closing the door behind him, 7said, ‘No, my friends, do not do anything so wicked. 8Look, I have two daughters, virgins both of them; let me bring them out to you, and you can do what you like with them. But do nothing to these men, because they have come under the shelter of my roof.’ 9They said, ‘Out of our way! This fellow has come and settled here as an alien, and does he now take it upon himself to judge us? We will treat you worse than them.’ They crowded in on Lot and pressed close to break down the door. 10But the two men inside reached out, pulled Lot into the house, and shut the door. 11Then they struck those in the doorway, both young and old, with blindness so that they could not find the entrance.

12The two men said to Lot, ‘Have you anyone here, sons-in-law, sons, or daughters, or anyone else belonging to you in the city? Get them out of this place, 13because we are going to destroy it. The LORD is aware of the great outcry against its citizens and has sent us to destroy it.’ 14So Lot went out and urged his sons-in-law to get out of the place at once. ‘The LORD is about to destroy the city,’ he said. But they did not take him seriously.

15As soon as it was dawn, the angels urged Lot: ‘Quick, take your wife and your two daughters who are here, or you will be destroyed when the city is punished.’ 16When he delayed, they grabbed his hand and the hands of his wife and two daughters, because the LORD had spared him, and they led him to safety outside the city. 17After they had brought them out, one said, ‘Flee for your lives! Do not look back or stop anywhere in the plain. Flee to the hills or you will be destroyed.’ 18Lot replied, ‘No, sirs! 19You have shown your servant favour, and even more by your unfailing care you have saved my life, but I cannot escape to the hills; I shall be overtaken by the disaster, and die. 20Look, here is a town, only a small place, near enough for me to get to quickly. Let me escape to this small place and save my life.’ 21He said to him, ‘I grant your request: I shall not overthrow the town you speak of. 22But flee there quickly, because I can do nothing until you are there.’ That is why the place was called Zoar a 19:22 Zoar: that is Small. . 23The sun had risen over the land as Lot entered Zoar, 24and the LORD rained down fire and brimstone from the skies on Sodom and Gomorrah. 25He overthrew those cities and destroyed all the plain, with everyone living there and everything growing in the ground. 26But Lot's wife looked back, and she turned into a pillar of salt.

27Early next morning Abraham went to the place where he had stood in the presence of the LORD. 28As he looked over Sodom and Gomorrah and all the wide extent of the plain, he saw thick smoke rising from the earth like smoke from a kiln. 29Thus it was, when God destroyed the cities of the plain, he took thought for Abraham by rescuing Lot from the total destruction of the cities where he had been living.

30Because Lot was afraid to stay in Zoar, he went up from there and settled with his two daughters in the hill-country, where he lived with them in a cave. 31The elder daughter said to the younger, ‘Our father is old and there is not a man in the country to come to us in the usual way. 32Come now, let us ply our father with wine and then lie with him and in this way preserve the family through our father.’ 33That night they gave him wine to drink, and the elder daughter came and lay with him, and he did not know when she lay down and when she got up. 34Next day the elder said to the younger, ‘Last night I lay with my father. Let us ply him with wine again tonight; then you go in and lie with him. So we shall preserve the family through our father.’ 35They gave their father wine to drink that night also; and the younger daughter went and lay with him, and he did not know when she lay down and when she got up. 36In this way both of Lot's daughters came to be pregnant by their father. 37The elder daughter bore a son and called him Moab; he was the ancestor of the present-day Moabites. 38The younger also bore a son, whom she called Ben-ammi; he was the ancestor of the present-day Ammonites.

Notes:

a 19:22 Zoar: that is Small.

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