Noah, the Bible tells us, was the only man in his times who lived right and obeyed God. And when he warned his family of impending danger, they followed him. Even in seeming insanity.
But there was another man whose family laughed at his warning. “Hurry and get out of here,” Lot implored. But they paid him no mind. He had moved his family too close to evil, it seems, and they didn’t want to leave it. He had overlooked an important principle.
To keep from wrongdoing, it’s important to maintain enough distance to view it objectively.
Abram settled in the land of Canaan, while Lot settled among the cities of the valley and moved his tent as far as Sodom.
Now the men of Sodom were wicked, great sinners against the LORD (Genesis 13:12-13).
Over proximity to sin can make it seem less like an evil to avoid.
Lot moved near Sodom for the good land. Perhaps he overlooked the evil, or felt it was no real danger. But he probably started seeing and hearing more than he should have. Until over time, it didn’t seem that bad, and he went to live in their midst.
Perhaps he reasoned the same way we sometimes do, thinking, “By being there, I’ll be able to reach them.”
And that is often true. We could never totally isolate ourselves from evil, even if we wanted to. Nor should we. We need to be present in this world to reach it. But over-exposure can confuse our sense of right and wrong. Eat enough hot pepper, and it soon ceases to seem hot. And sin can work in the same way.
The contrast of two fathers who reaped vastly different consequences in their families.
Two men who lived in evil times, surrounded by evil people. Two men who stood in the place of being the only ones able to sound the alarm of impending destruction.
Neither Noah nor his family could imagine either mass destruction or rain. Neither had ever happened. Yet his family followed him, helped him, and were saved from destruction. Because of a father who taught and displayed righteousness, even in the midst of an evil generation.
Lot’s family had probably learned of the flood from his uncle Abraham, who Bible scholars believe was a contemporary of Noah’s son Shem. Still they scorned his warning, and most of them perished. Because of a father who allowed evil to encroach instead of maintaining distance from it.
Which father are you?
Remember Dad, your family watches your walk, which speaks louder than your words. Every compromise with evil, however little, can reduce credibility. But likewise, standing for right, speaks to your family loud and clear!