And Lot lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered every where…
The lesson to be gained from the history of Abraham and Lot is obviously this: that nothing but a clear apprehension of things unseen, a simple trust in God's promises, and the greatness of mind thence arising, can make us act above the world — indifferent, or almost so, to its comforts, enjoyments, and friendships; or, in other words, that its goods corrupt the common run of religious men who possess them.
I. ABRAHAM AND LOT HAD GIVEN UP THIS WORLD AT THE WORD OF GOD, BUT A MORE DIFFICULT TRIAL REMAINED. Though never easy, yet it is easier to set our hearts on religion or to take some one decided step, which throws us out of our line of life and in a manner forces upon us what we should naturally shrink from, than to possess in good measure the goods of this world and yet love God supremely. The wealth which Lot had hitherto enjoyed had been given him as a pledge of God's favour, and had its chief value as coming from Him. But surely he forgot this, and esteemed it for its own sake, when he allowed himself to be attracted by the riches and beauty of a guilty and devoted country.
II. GOD IS SO MERCIFUL THAT HE SUFFERS NOT HIS FAVOURED SERVANTS TO WANDER FROM HIM WITHOUT REPEATED WARNINGS. Lot had chosen the habitation of sinners; still he was not left to himself. A calamity was sent to warn and chasten him: he and his property fell into the hands of the five kings. This was an opportunity of breaking off his connection with the people of Sodom, but he did not take it as such.
III. THE GAIN OF THIS WORLD IS BUT TRANSITORY; FAITH REAPS A LATE BUT LASTING RECOMPENSE.
(J. H. Newman, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And Lot lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered every where, before the LORD destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, even as the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt, as thou comest unto Zoar.
WEB: Lot lifted up his eyes, and saw all the plain of the Jordan, that it was well-watered everywhere, before Yahweh destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, like the garden of Yahweh, like the land of Egypt, as you go to Zoar.