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by Wayne Blank
"The smoke of the country went up as the smoke of a furnace"
Zeboim was mentioned as one of the territorial border points of the Canaanites prior to the establishment of the land of Israel:
"And the border of the Canaanites was from Sidon, as thou comest to Gerar, unto Gaza; as thou goest, unto Sodom, and Gomorrah, and Admah, and Zeboim, even unto Lasha." (Genesis 10:19 KJV)
By the time of Abraham, the "cities of the plain" had become a political entity in which the kings of the cities were allied. Abraham's nephew Lot was by then a resident of Sodom and was taken captive when the area was overrun by another confederation of kings under Chedorlaomer, a Babylonian. Abraham rescued Lot and restored the sovereignty of the cities of the plain (see Abraham At War)
"And it came to pass in the days of Amraphel king of Shinar, Arioch king of Ellasar, Chedorlaomer king of Elam, and Tidal king of nations; That these made war with Bera king of Sodom, and with Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of Admah, and Shemeber king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela, which is Zoar. All these were joined together in the vale of Siddim, which is the salt sea. Twelve years they served Chedorlaomer, and in the thirteenth year they rebelled."
The Lord's destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah is one of the most well-known and unheeded (see the Fact Finder question below) object lessons of Bible History:
"The sun was risen upon the earth when Lot entered into Zoar. Then The Lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from The Lord out of heaven; And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground. But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt."
Fact Finder: (a) What did the apostle Peter say about the destruction of Sodom as a warning to the ungodly? (b) Did Jesus Christ ever speak of the ancient destruction of Sodom and the cities of the plain as a matter of prophecy regarding His return?