July 09, 2023

Dancing with the Devil

Genesis 13:5-13

Lot looked around and saw that the whole plain of the Jordan toward Zoar was well watered . . . like the land of Egypt.

—  Genesis 13:10

Abraham and his nephew Lot were wealthy sheepherders. But bickering broke out between their herdsmen. To resolve this turf war, Abraham suggested they herd their livestock in separate areas. After all, there was plenty of good land to use.

Lot eyed the fertile land by the Jordan River. He wanted the best for himself, so the choice became a no-brainer for him. But Lot lacked discernment and saw only the attraction of the land in front of him. He did not consider the long-term spiritual consequences of living near Sodom and Gomorrah, with their evil influences—or maybe he just didn’t care. Lot’s vision was clouded by the material prosperity he saw. He pitched his tents near Sodom—and eventually became a resident there (Genesis 14:11). Later on, Lot lost everything—even those who were close to him. Small concessions and little compromises along the way led to disaster (Genesis 19).

Lot’s life serves as a warning sign. We cannot compromise with wickedness and evil and come away unscathed. We can­not dance with the devil without getting hurt. Moral compromise begins with small steps in the wrong direction.

Lord, worldly pleasures and earthly gains dazzle us, and we can easily lose our way. Guide us to ask for your wisdom and to live by it. Strengthen us to be able to resist the devil and to draw near to you. In Jesus, Amen.

About the author — Dan Jongsma

Daniel Jongsma serves as an interim pastor in Fulton, Illinois. He has pastored congregations in Elmhurst and Fulton, Illinois; in Dearborn, Michigan; and in Nashville, Tennessee. Dan also served as a church planter in the Chicago area. He and his wife, Gloria, have three daughters and four grandchildren.

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