That evening the two angels came to the entrance of the city of Sodom, and Lot was sitting there as they arrived. When he saw them, he stood up to meet them. Then he welcomed them and bowed low to the ground.
"My lords," he said, "come to my home to wash your feet, and be my guests for the night. You may then get up in the morning as early as you like and be on your way again." "Oh no," they said, "we'll just spend the night out here in the city square."
But Lot insisted, so at last they went home with him. He set a great feast before them, complete with fresh bread made without yeast. After the meal,
as they were preparing to retire for the night, all the men of Sodom, young and old, came from all over the city and surrounded the house.
They shouted to Lot, "Where are the men who came to spend the night with you? Bring them out so we can have sex with them."
Lot stepped outside to talk to them, shutting the door behind him.
"Please, my brothers," he begged, "don't do such a wicked thing.
Look -- I have two virgin daughters. Do with them as you wish, but leave these men alone, for they are under my protection."
"Stand back!" they shouted. "Who do you think you are? We let you settle among us, and now you are trying to tell us what to do! We'll treat you far worse than those other men!" And they lunged at Lot and began breaking down the door.
But the two angels reached out and pulled Lot in and bolted the door.
Then they blinded the men of Sodom so they couldn't find the doorway.
"Do you have any other relatives here in the city?" the angels asked. "Get them out of this place -- sons-in-law, sons, daughters, or anyone else.
For we will destroy the city completely. The stench of the place has reached the LORD, and he has sent us to destroy it."
So Lot rushed out to tell his daughters' fiancés, "Quick, get out of the city! The LORD is going to destroy it." But the young men thought he was only joking.
At dawn the next morning the angels became insistent. "Hurry," they said to Lot. "Take your wife and your two daughters who are here. Get out of here right now, or you will be caught in the destruction of the city."
When Lot still hesitated, the angels seized his hand and the hands of his wife and two daughters and rushed them to safety outside the city, for the LORD was merciful.
"Run for your lives!" the angels warned. "Do not stop anywhere in the valley. And don't look back! Escape to the mountains, or you will die."
"Oh no, my lords, please," Lot begged.
"You have been so kind to me and saved my life, and you have granted me such mercy. But I cannot go to the mountains. Disaster would catch up to me there, and I would soon die.
See, there is a small village nearby. Please let me go there instead; don't you see how small it is? Then my life will be saved."
"All right," the angel said, "I will grant your request. I will not destroy that little village.
But hurry! For I can do nothing until you are there." From that time on, that village was known as Zoar. a23
The sun was rising as Lot reached the village.
Then the LORD rained down fire and burning sulfur from the heavens on Sodom and Gomorrah.
He utterly destroyed them, along with the other cities and villages of the plain, eliminating all life -- people, plants, and animals alike.
But Lot's wife looked back as she was following along behind him, and she became a pillar of salt.
The next morning Abraham was up early and hurried out to the place where he had stood in the LORD's presence.
He looked out across the plain to Sodom and Gomorrah and saw columns of smoke and fumes, as from a furnace, rising from the cities there.
But God had listened to Abraham's request and kept Lot safe, removing him from the disaster that engulfed the cities on the plain.
Afterward Lot left Zoar because he was afraid of the people there, and he went to live in a cave in the mountains with his two daughters.
One day the older daughter said to her sister, "There isn't a man anywhere in this entire area for us to marry. And our father will soon be too old to have children.
Come, let's get him drunk with wine, and then we will sleep with him. That way we will preserve our family line through our father."
So that night they got him drunk, and the older daughter went in and slept with her father. He was unaware of her lying down or getting up again.
The next morning the older daughter said to her younger sister, "I slept with our father last night. Let's get him drunk with wine again tonight, and you go in and sleep with him. That way our family line will be preserved."
So that night they got him drunk again, and the younger daughter went in and slept with him. As before, he was unaware of her lying down or getting up again.
So both of Lot's daughters became pregnant by their father.
When the older daughter gave birth to a son, she named him Moab. b He became the ancestor of the nation now known as the Moabites.
When the younger daughter gave birth to a son, she named him Ben-ammi. c He became the ancestor of the nation now known as the Ammonites.
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)