Genesis 18
Expositor's Dictionary of Texts
And the LORD appeared unto him in the plains of Mamre: and he sat in the tent door in the heat of the day;
Abraham's Intercession

Genesis 18:16-33

When Scott the commentator was dying, we are told that he spoke much to those around him on the way in which his prayers for others had been answered. He thought he had failed less in the duty of intercession than in any other. Whether that be true of Scott or not, it is surely very true of Abraham. His nearness to God is never more apparent than when he intercedes for Sodom. Meyer notes these features of his prayer: (1) It was lonely prayer. 'He waited till on all the wide plateau there was no living man to overhear.' (2) It was prolonged prayer. 'We do not give the sun a chance to thaw us. (3) It was very humble prayer, and (4) It was persevering prayer. 'In point of fact God was drawing him on.'

Reference.—XVIII. 17-33.—Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. xli. No. 2400.

Genesis 18:32

Burke in his 'Observations on a late Publication intituled "The Present State of the Nation,"' remarks that the author, 'after the character he has given of [England's] inhabitants of all ranks and classes, has great charity in caring much about them; and, indeed, no less hope, in being of opinion that such a detestable nation can ever become the care of Providence. He has not found even five good men in our devoted city.'

References.—XIX. 12.—Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. x. No. 601. XIX. 14.—C. Perren, Revival Sermons, p. 216. XIX. 14, 15, 17, 24-26.—R. S. Soanes, Sermons for the Young, p. 83. G. Brooks, Outlines of Sermons, p. 120. XIX. 15-26.—A. Maclaren, Expositions: of Holy ScriptureGenesis, p. 142. XIX. 15.—Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. li. No. 2944. XIX. 16.—W. J. Wilmot-Buxton, Sunday Lessons, vol. i. p. 222. Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. xiv. No. 789. XIX. 17.—J. Aspinall, Parish Sermons (1st Series) p. 200. W. H. Hutchings, Sermon Sketches, p. 71. Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. xli. No. 2400; vol. x. No. 550. G. Brooks, Outlines of Sermons, p. 119. XIX. 20.—Spurgeon, Sermons, vol v. No. 248. XIX. 23.—Ibid. vol. xlv. No. 2642. J. C. M. Bellew, Sermons, vol. iii. p. 111. XIX. 26.—A. G. Mortimer, The Church's Lessons, vol. ii. p." 241. C. Perren, Outline Sermons, p. 286. H. Melvill, Penny Pulpit, No. 2445. XIX. 27, 28.—Spurgeon, Sermons, vol. x. No. 602. XIX.—F. W. Robertson, Notes on Genesis, p. 43. XX. 11.—J. Baldwin Brown, The Sunday Afternoon, p. 402. XX.—J. Parker, Adam, Noah, and Abraham, p. 151.

And he lift up his eyes and looked, and, lo, three men stood by him: and when he saw them, he ran to meet them from the tent door, and bowed himself toward the ground,
And said, My Lord, if now I have found favour in thy sight, pass not away, I pray thee, from thy servant:
Let a little water, I pray you, be fetched, and wash your feet, and rest yourselves under the tree:
And I will fetch a morsel of bread, and comfort ye your hearts; after that ye shall pass on: for therefore are ye come to your servant. And they said, So do, as thou hast said.
And Abraham hastened into the tent unto Sarah, and said, Make ready quickly three measures of fine meal, knead it, and make cakes upon the hearth.
And Abraham ran unto the herd, and fetcht a calf tender and good, and gave it unto a young man; and he hasted to dress it.
And he took butter, and milk, and the calf which he had dressed, and set it before them; and he stood by them under the tree, and they did eat.
And they said unto him, Where is Sarah thy wife? And he said, Behold, in the tent.
And he said, I will certainly return unto thee according to the time of life; and, lo, Sarah thy wife shall have a son. And Sarah heard it in the tent door, which was behind him.
Now Abraham and Sarah were old and well stricken in age; and it ceased to be with Sarah after the manner of women.
Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, After I am waxed old shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?
And the LORD said unto Abraham, Wherefore did Sarah laugh, saying, Shall I of a surety bear a child, which am old?
Is any thing too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.
Then Sarah denied, saying, I laughed not; for she was afraid. And he said, Nay; but thou didst laugh.
And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way.
And the LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do;
Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?
For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.
And the LORD said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous;
I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know.
And the men turned their faces from thence, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham stood yet before the LORD.
And Abraham drew near, and said, Wilt thou also destroy the righteous with the wicked?
Peradventure there be fifty righteous within the city: wilt thou also destroy and not spare the place for the fifty righteous that are therein?
That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?
And the LORD said, If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes.
And Abraham answered and said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord, which am but dust and ashes:
Peradventure there shall lack five of the fifty righteous: wilt thou destroy all the city for lack of five? And he said, If I find there forty and five, I will not destroy it.
And he spake unto him yet again, and said, Peradventure there shall be forty found there. And he said, I will not do it for forty's sake.
And he said unto him, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak: Peradventure there shall thirty be found there. And he said, I will not do it, if I find thirty there.
And he said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord: Peradventure there shall be twenty found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for twenty's sake.
And he said, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak yet but this once: Peradventure ten shall be found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for ten's sake.
And the LORD went his way, as soon as he had left communing with Abraham: and Abraham returned unto his place.
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