Chapter VII: The Fruits of Faith
Genesis 19 Spiritually Interpreted
Gen. 19:1-11. And the two angels came to Sodom at even; and Lot sat in the gate of Sodom: and Lot saw them, and rose up to meet them; and he bowed himself with his face to the earth; and he said, Behold now, my lords, turn aside, I pray you, into your servant's house, and tarry all night, and wash your feet, and ye shall rise up early, and go on your way. And they said, Nay; but we will abide in the street all night. And he urged them greatly; and they turned in unto him, and entered into his house; and he made them a feast, and did bake unleavened bread, and they did eat. But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both young and old, all the people from every quarter; and they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men that came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them. And Lot went out unto them to the door, and shut the door after him. And he said, I pray you, my brethren, do not so wickedly. Behold now, I have two daughters that have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing, forasmuch as they are come under the shadow of my roof. And they said, Stand back. And they said, This one fellow came in to sojourn, and he will needs be a judge: now will we deal worse with thee, than with them. And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and drew near to break the door. But the men put forth their hand, and brought Lot into the house to them, and shut to the door. And they smote the men that were at the door of the house with blindness, both small and great, so that they wearied themselves to find the door.
Why did Jehovah appear to Lot as two angels instead of three, as He had appeared to Abraham?
As Abraham represents the positive side of faith and Lot the negative side, it can also be said that Abraham represents the spiritual consciousness and that Lot is the natural consciousness, which however is turned toward the light. Jehovah appeared to Abraham as three. Spiritual consciousness understands the trinity of being that is spirit, soul, and body. Lot saw Jehovah as two angels, which shows that the natural mind leaves Spirit out of consideration.
When Abraham invited the three into his tent they accepted his hospitality without comment. But when Lot asked the two to spend the night under his roof, wash their feet, and partake of his food, they refused. It took persistent urging on the part of Lot to persuade them to abide with him.
When the unfolding nature (Lot) begins to entertain higher spiritual thoughts (angels), all the evil and degenerate thoughts (men of Sodom) come at once and "compass the house." They demand that the higher thoughts be put out, or that they be admitted (into mind) to throw them out. When the demand is refused they become violent. Man's way is to compromise with evil thoughts by giving to them
his love and emotion, even if he does not allow them free expression in his mind. Lot offered his daughters to the men of Sodom. When carnal thoughts become strong and numerous enough (compass the house) they assert complete mastery over the individual and tell him: "Stand back . . . This one fellow came in to sojourn, and he will needs be a judge."
The angels (high spiritual thoughts) whom Lot induced to enter his house, came to his rescue. They struck the men of Sodom (carnal thoughts) with blindness so that they were thrown into confusion and their destructive efforts rendered futile, at least for the time being: blind passions that stop at nothing to gain their ends must be annihilated.
Gen. 19:12-23. And the men said unto Lot, Hast thou here any besides? son-in-law, and thy sons, and thy daughters, and whomsoever thou hast in the city, bring them out of the place: for we will destroy this place, because the cry of them is waxed great before Jehovah; and Jehovah hath sent us to destroy it. And Lot went out, and spake unto his sons-in-law, who married his daughters, and said, Up, get you out of this place; for Jehovah will destroy the city. But he seemed unto his sons-in-law as one that mocked. And when the morning arose, then the angels hastened Lot, saying, Arise, take thy wife, and thy two daughters that are here, lest thou be consumed in the iniquity of the city. But he lingered; and the men laid hold upon his hand, and upon the hand of his wife, and upon the hand of his two daughters, Jehovah being merciful unto him: and they brought him forth, and set him without the city. And it came to pass, when they had brought them forth abroad, that he said, Escape for thy life; look not behind thee, neither stay thou in all the Plain; escape to the mountain, lest thou be consumed.
And Lot said unto them, Oh, not so, my lord: behold now, thy servant hath found favor in thy sight, and thou hast magnified thy lovingkindness, which thou hast showed unto me in saving my life; and I cannot escape to the mountain, lest evil overtake me, and I die: behold now, this city is near to flee unto, and it is a little one. Oh let me escape thither (is it not a little one?), and my soul shall live. And he said unto him, See, I have accepted thee concerning this thing also, that I will not overthrow the city of which thou hast spoken. Haste thee, escape thither; for I cannot do anything till thou be come thither. Therefore the name of the city was called Zoar. The sun was risen upon the earth when Lot came unto Zoar.
Lot escaped to the little city of Zoar. What does this mean?
Jehovah's promise to Abraham was that He would save the righteous. Here Jehovah's angels invited Lot to take with him those of his household (thought people) who were ready to advance spiritually. Only Lot, his wife, and his two virgin daughters were prepared to take the step. However after the Lord had delivered them outside the walls of the city Lot (negative faith) was afraid to attempt flight to the mountain (high state of consciousness). He knew he was not fully prepared for such a step. The angels consented to let him escape to the little city of Zoar, the name of which means "reduced," "made small," "lessened." Thus Lot was given opportunity to open his mind to the light to such a degree that seeming negation was minimized in consciousness, and he was blessed with a new understanding of Truth. ("The sun was risen upon the earth when Lot came unto Zoar.")
Gen. 19:24-26. Then Jehovah rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from Jehovah 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.
Metaphysically how do you account for the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah?
Eventually all error must be wiped out of consciousness. In our efforts to overcome the sins of the flesh we pass through strange experiences, and wonderful revelations come to those of us who conform to divine law. The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah by fire represents a mighty purifying process that makes man ready for a great realization of divine life.
Lot's wife was turned into a pillar of salt. Salt is a preservative, corresponding to memory. When we remember the pleasures of the senses and long for their return, we preserve the sense desire. This desire will manifest itself sometime, somewhere, unless the memory is dissolved through renunciation.
Gen. 19:27-29. And Abraham got up early in the morning to the place where he had stood before Jehovah: and he looked toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward all the land of the Plain, and beheld, and, lo, the smoke of the land went up as the smoke of a furnace.
And it came to pass, when God destroyed the cities of the Plain, that God remembered Abraham, and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow, when he overthrew the cities in which Lot dwelt.
Is anything ever really destroyed? What is the change that takes place in it?
The above Scripture means that after a degree of cleansing or destruction of sense we mentally review our experiences and recognize that nothing is really destroyed but rather transmuted (Abraham beheld the result). Through faith we take stock of the progress we have made and find that we are getting a consciousness of radiant substance (smoke) and of a
higher life (heat). Nothing is lost. When sense consciousness is raised to a higher plane all that belongs to it is saved with it. This is represented by Jehovah's saving Lot's life.
Gen. 19:30-38. And Lot went up out of Zoar, and dwelt in the mountain, and his two daughters with him; for he feared to dwell in Zoar: and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two daughters. And the first-born said unto the younger, Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth: come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night: and the first-born went in, and lay with her father; and he knew not when she lay down, nor when she arose. And it came to pass on the morrow, that the first-born said unto the younger, Behold, I lay yesternight with my father: let us make him drink wine this night also, and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night also: and the younger arose, and lay with him; and he knew not when she lay down, nor when she arose. Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father. And the first-born bare a son and called his name Moab: the same is the father of the Moabites unto this day. And the younger, she also bare a son, and called his name Ben-ammi: the same is the father of the children of Ammon unto this day.
When the soul reaches a certain stage of unfoldment the natural progressive quality of faith shows a tendency toward spiritual growth. Lot here represents natural faith in a state of evolution, yet his living in a cave in the mountain denotes that this faith is still in the clutches of materiality. The feminine forces of
faith (daughters of Lot) reflect the parent desire for continued perpetuation of their line. There was no other masculine principle on the plane of consciousness on which these feminine forces were functioning ("there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth"). Through stimulating life (wine) the seed idea was implanted by the father principle (Lot) in receptive soil and brought forth fruit.
What states of consciousness are represented by Moab and Ben-ammi?
Moab, son of Lot's eldest daughter, represents the thought that perpetuates body consciousness. It is found in the idea of organized substance ("flowing from the father") but it is impregnated with the lusts of the flesh. Referring to the Moabites, Jeremiah says, "Cursed be he that doeth the work of Jehovah negligently." So Moab represents one phase of the lusts of carnal mind for expression through the flesh. While Moab pertains to the body and the most external conditions of life, there is something good in him, or at least a possibility of good.
Ben-ammi, the name of the son of Lot's youngest daughter and father of the Ammonites, means "son of my people," "son of my kindred," "son of my tribe," which points to segregation and personal selfishness. This thought is the source of the clan, then the nation. When this egotism is exalted the nation looks on itself as being superior to all other nations and proceeds to compel them to acknowledge this superiority by force of arms. The Ammonites waged constant war against the Israelites but were eventually defeated.
Preceding Entry: Mysteries of Genesis 164: Chapter VII: The Fruits of Faith
Following Entry: Mysteries of Genesis 171-174: Genesis 20 Mysteries of Genesis