And the men turned their faces from there, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham stood yet before the LORD.…
I. THE RIGHT TO UTTER IT PRESUPPOSES A LIFE OF GODLINESS.
II. IT IS SUPPORTED BY THE THOUGHT OF THE DIVINE JUSTICE.
III. IT IS MARKED BY THE SPIRIT OF BOLDNESS.
1. This boldness was based upon the conviction that God would stay judgment upon wicked communities for the sake of the righteous few among them.
2. This boldness was based upon a sense of the Fatherhood of God. Without a sense of this filial relationship with God no man could presume so much.
3. This boldness is tempered by humility. Abraham speaks as one who can hardly realize his right to speak at all (ver. 27). He remembers what he is in the sight of his Creator. Our high privilege does not destroy the reasons for awe and reverence.
IV. WE MUST RECOGNIZE THE FACT THAT IT HAS PROPER LIMITS.
1. The moral limits of the Divine clemency. The long-suffering and forbearance of God may be tempted too far,
2. By a sense of what is due to the Divine honour. The dignity of God's character and government must be upheld.
3. By our recognition of the Divine sovereignty. God rules all things supremely by a righteous will. It is not given to us to adjust the exact proportions of justice and mercy in God's dealings with mankind. To attempt this would be presumption.
4. By the confidence which we ought to have in the Divine character. Abraham felt that he had no need to go further. He had seen enough already of God's favour and willingness to save. Therefore he might hope and trust for the future.
(T. H. Leale.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And the men turned their faces from thence, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham stood yet before the LORD.