Like a father pities (even his wayward) children…

The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations [trials]…(2 Peter 2:9a).

As Peter gave examples of God’s judgment against sin, he also provided examples of God’s faithfulness to His children. When God decided to judge the sin of the world with the Flood, Noah had found grace in God’s sight (Genesis 6:8), because Noah and his family chose to serve God even while the rest of the world was consumed with evil (Genesis 6:5). So, God instructed Noah to build the Ark (Genesis 6:13-16). During that time, Noah pleaded with the people to come join him on the Ark because of the coming flood. The Ark was a big project, so it’s likely Noah hired contractors to help with the work much like churches today hire construction companies to build churches. Given Noah’s character, he certainly witnessed to his contractors, but in the end, only “eight souls were saved” (1 Peter 3:20). When you consider the magnitude of the Flood – it covered the entire earth – and that Noah and his family were saved out of all that chaos, you have to admire God’s surgical precision.

Lot is another example of God’s ability to protect His own. Unlike Noah, who found himself in the midst of corruption, Lot put himself there. He pitched his tent toward Sodom (Genesis 13:12). To put it in more modern terms: After being given the choice of any place to establish his home, Lot chose Vegas. At first, he was established outside the city. It was in view, but he was not in it. At some point Lot decided perhaps to become a “missionary” to Sodom, or perhaps he brought his family into the city because it brought them closer to the conveniences of the place, like the local Wal-Mart of the time. Whatever it was, he started outside the city and then ended up becoming an integral part of the city. Peter says that Lot “vexed his righteous soul” being constantly in the presence of the corruption that was there. In other words, it wore him out spiritually. The corruption he saw and what he saw it was doing to his family probably grieved him, but he had compromised with the lifestyle of that place so much that while he may have been a city leader, he had become an ineffective witness. When he tried to warn his married daughters and his sons-in-law of the coming judgment, they didn’t take him seriously (Genesis 19:14). In the end, Lot lost his position, his possessions and most of his progeny as well as his spouse. All Lot had to show for his time in Sodom were children born to him as a result of an incestuous relationship with his two surviving daughters. The only bright spot to this tragic account is that God saved Lot in spite of himself. Sadly, there are many of us who call ourselves believers who will be entering heaven in spite of ourselves. We won’t have much in the way of crowns to cast at our Savior’s feet, but we can still praise Him for our redemption because as a father pities (even his wayward) children, so the LORD pities them that fear Him (Psalm 103:13).

[Photo by Ketan Krishnan on Unsplash]

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