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Ezekiel 16:49

This was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, excess of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy.

Your sister, Sodom

Judah’s sister state should be Israel, but the prophet declares they have shown themselves members of the household of Sodom and Gomorrah. No one ever accuses the prophets of being too subtle.

Judah preserved these words, though. They came to recognize the truth of them. There are times that the heart of the nation grows cold, when leaders become preoccupied with wealth, privilege and power. Kings grasp and take and amass wealth, worshipping what is false and neglecting what is true. Woe to those who call evil good and good evilNIV,” says Isaiah, describing the perversion of values that plagues his generation, the inversion of truth.

In a terrifying phrase, Isaiah declares “we have made lies our refuge, and in falsehood we have taken shelter.” What future can there be for such a people? The prophets foresee only destruction.

The sixth petition of the Lord’s Prayer, “Lead us not into temptation,” is hardly a token request. It slips from our mouths so thoughtlessly, but it is deeply urgent and demanding. Do not let us travel this road, O God! Do not let us make our bed in Sheol! Do not let us take up the mantle of Sodom! Do not let us become the arrogant and proud, the smug and complacent! Do not let chill winds harden our hearts! Do not let fear corrode our souls! Do not let anger ferment! Do not let destruction rampage! Do not let hate and despair prevail! This prayer is about far more than simple morality; it is about not losing the joy of the wedding feast, or the open hands and hearts of the Lord’s Table.