Young people as they grow the will have to make choices. How do you go about making choices? From the life of Lot this article discusses four crucial areas for choice-making in the life of Christian youth.

Source: The Banner of Truth (NRC), 1986. 3 pages.

Lot: A Beacon

Come and listen while I tell you a few passages of Lot's history.

One thing then I observe in Lot is this – he made a wrong choice in early life.

There was a time when Abraham and Lot lived together. They both became rich, and could live together no longer. Abraham, the elder of the two, in the true spirit of humility and courtesy, gave Lot the choice of the country, when they resolved to part company: "If thou," he said, "wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left" (Gen. 13:9).

Lot: A BeaconAnd what did Lot do? We are told he saw that the plains of Jordan, near Sodom, were rich, fertile, and well-watered. It was a good land for cattle, and full of pastures. He had large flocks and herds, and it just suited his requirements. And this was the land he chose for a residence, simply because it was a rich, "well-watered land" (Gen. 13:10).

It was near the town of Sodom! He cared not for that. The men of Sodom, who would be his neighbors, were wicked! It mattered not. They were sinners before God exceedingly! It made no difference to him. The pasture was rich. The land was good. He wanted such a country for his flocks and herds. And before that argument all scruples and doubts, if indeed he had any, at once went down.

He chose by sight, and not by faith. He asked no counsel of God, to preserve him from mistakes. He looked to the things of time, and not of eternity. He thought of his worldly profit, and not of his soul. He considered only what would help him in this life. He forgot the solemn business of the life to come. This was a bad beginning.

But I observe also that Lot mixed with sinners when there was no occasion for his doing so.

We are first told that he "pitched his tent toward Sodom" (Gen. 13:12). This, as I have already shown, was a great mistake.

But the next time he is mentioned, we find him actually living in Sodom itself. The Spirit says expressly, "He dwelt in Sodom" (Gen. 14:12). His tents were left. The country was forsaken. He occupied a house in the very streets of that wicked town.

We are not told the reason of this change. We are not aware that any occasion could have arisen for it. We are sure there could have been no command of God. Perhaps his wife liked the town better than the country, for the sake of society. It is plain she had no grace herself. Perhaps she persuaded Lot it was needful for the advantage of his daughters, that they might marry, and get settled in life. Perhaps the daughters urged living in the town for the sake of company: they were evidently worldly-minded young women. Perhaps Lot liked it himself, in order to make more of his flocks and herds. Men never want reasons to confirm their wills. But one thing is very clear – Lot dwelt in the midst of Sodom without good cause.Lot: A Beacon

When a child of God does these two things which I have named, we never need be surprised if we hear, by and by, unfavorable accounts about his soul. We never need wonder if he becomes deaf to the warning voice of affliction, as Lot was (Gen. 14:12), and turns out a lingerer in the day of trial and danger, as Lot did.

Make a wrong choice in life – an unscriptural choice – and settle yourself down unnecessarily in the midst of worldly people, and I know no surer way to damage your own spirituality, and to go backward about your eternal concerns. This is the way to make the pulse of your soul beat feebly and languidly. This is the way to make the edge of your feeling about sin become blunt and dull. This is the way to dim the eyes of your spiritual discernment, till you can scarcely distinguish good from evil, and stumble as you walk. This is the way to bring a moral palsy on your feet and limbs, and make you go tottering and trembling along the road to Zion, as if the grasshopper was a burden. This is the way to sell the pass to your worst enemy – to give the devil vantage-ground in the battle – to tie your arms in fighting – to fetter your legs in running – to dry up the sources of your strength – to cripple your energies – to cut off your own hair, like Samson, and give yourself into the hands of the Philistines, to put out your own eyes, grind at the mill, and become a slave.Lot: A Beacon

I call on every reader of this paper to mark well what I am saying. Settle these things down in your mind. Do not forget them. Recollect them in the morning. Recall them to memory at night. Let them sink down deeply into your heart. If ever you would be safe from "lingering," beware of needless mingling with worldly people. Beware of Lot's choice! If you would not settle down into a dry, dull, sleepy, lazy, barren, heavy, carnal, stupid, torpid state of soul, beware of Lot's choice!

  1. Remember this in choosing a dwelling-place, or residence. It is not enough that the house is comfortable the situation good – the air fine – the neighborhood pleasant – the rent or price small – the living cheap. There are other things yet to be considered. You must think of your immortal soul. Will the house you think of help you towards heaven or hell? Is the Gospel preached within an easy distance? Is Christ crucified within reach of your door? Is there a real man of God near, who will watch over your soul? I charge you, if you love life, not to overlook this. Beware of Lot's choice.
  2. Remember this in choosing a calling, a place, or profession in life. It is not enough that the salary is high – the wages good – the work light – the advantages numerous – the prospects of getting on most favorable. Think of your soul, your immortal soul. Will it be prospered or drawn back? Will you have your Sundays free, and be able to have one day in the week for your spiritual business? I beseech you, by the mercies of God, to take heed what you do. Make no rash decision. Look at the place in every light – the light of God as well as the light of the world. Gold may be bought too dear. Beware of Lot's choice.
  3. Remember this in choosing a husband or wife, if you are unmarried. It is not enough that your eye is pleased – that your tastes are met – that your mind finds congeniality – that there is amiability and affection – that there is a comfortable home for life. There needs something more than this. There is a life yet to come. Think of your soul, your immortal soul. Will it be helped upwards or dragged down­wards by the union you are planning? Will it be made more heavenly, or more earthly – drawn nearer to Christ, or to the world? Will its religion grow in vigor, or will it decay? I pray you, by all your hopes of glory, allow this to enter into your calculations. "Think," as old Baxter said, and "think, and think again," before you commit yourself. "Be not unequally yoked" (2 Cor. 6:14). Matrimony is nowhere named among the means of conversion. Remember Lot's choice.
  4. Remember this, if you are ever offered a prominent post. It is not enough to have good pay and regular employment – the confidence of your employers, and the best chance of rising to a higher post. These things are very well in their way, but they are not everything.Lot: A Beacon How will your soul fare if you serve a company that demands Sunday work? What day in the week will you have for God and eternity? What opportunities will you have for hearing the Gospel preached? I solemnly warn you to consider this. It will profit you nothing to fill your purse, if you bring leanness and poverty on your soul. Beware of selling your Sabbath for the sake of a good place! Remember Esau's mess of pottage. Beware of Lot's choice!

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