The Destruction Of Sodom
"Early the next morning Abraham got up and returned to the place where he had stood before The Lord. He looked down toward Sodom and Gomorrah, toward all the land of the plain, and he saw dense smoke rising from the land, like smoke from a furnace." (Genesis 19:27-28)
Whether or not it was a nuclear explosion, as some people now believe, or another sort of natural or supernatural force, one thing is certain - the destruction of Sodom came with great power. Its devastation was so complete that, unlike so many other ancient cities, no trace of it has yet to be found.
The location of Sodom, along with Gomorrah and the other "cities of the plain" is subject to speculation. What is known for certain is that it was somewhere east or southeast of Jerusalem, in the area of the Dead Sea, also known as the The Salt Sea. Some believe that it was at the northern end of the Dead Sea, while others say it was at the southern end. We do know that Abraham was able to see it from the great trees of Mamre, near Hebron (Genesis 18:1, 19:27). Hebron is located about 18 miles (29 kilometers) west of the Dead Sea, at a latitude about half-way between its north and south ends.
Why did God destroy Sodom? There seems to be a number of different opinions in our changing world, so perhaps it's best (as of course it always is) to let The Word of God in The Holy Bible account speak for itself. The entire story of Sodom and Gomorrah is found in Genesis chapters 18 and 19, along with numerous other references throughout the Bible. Here are a few excerpts -
- "The two angels arrived in Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gateway of the city." (Genesis 19:1)
- "He prepared a meal for them, baking bread without yeast, and they ate. Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom - young and old - surrounded the house. They called to Lot, "Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them." (Genesis 19:3-5)
- "The two men said to Lot, "Do you have anyone else here - sons-in-law, sons or daughters, or anyone else in the city who belongs to you? Get them out of here, because we are going to destroy this place. The outcry to The Lord against its people is so great that He has sent us to destroy it." (Genesis 19:12-13)
- "By the time Lot reached Zoar, the sun had risen over the land. Then The Lord rained down burning sulfur on Sodom and Gomorrah - from The Lord out of the heavens. Thus He overthrew those cities and the entire plain, including all those living in those cities - and also the vegetation in the land. But Lot's wife looked back and she became a pillar of salt." (Genesis 19:23-26)
- "The look on their faces testifies against them; they parade their sin like Sodom; they do not hide it. Woe to them! They have brought disaster upon themselves." (Isaiah 3:9)
- "In a similar way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire." (Jude 7)
Fact Finder: Did the apostle Peter say that what happened to Sodom is an example of what is going to happen to the wicked and ungodly?
2 Peter 2:6-8