Now Lot went up out of Zoar and settled in the hills with his two daughters, for he was afraid to stay in Zoar; so he lived in a cave with his two daughters. (Genesis 19:30 NRSV)

If God had given him that land, why Lot has to run from that city and go to mountain ? Is there any cultural background that can help me understand this passage in better way.

  • We have a whole site dedicated to Biblical Hermeneutics that would probably be a better place to ask. – DJClayworth Aug 13 '20 at 16:44
  • However before you ask there, verse 29 says "So when God destroyed the cities of the plain, he remembered Abraham, and he brought Lot out of the catastrophe that overthrew the cities where Lot had lived.". And also "he was afraid to stay in Zoar". Does that explain it? – DJClayworth Aug 13 '20 at 16:46
  • Thanks I will move question there – Hitesh Aug 13 '20 at 17:05
  • Thanks @DJClayworth, I am just trying to understand why LOT was afraid. "21He said to him, “Very well, I grant you this favor too, and will not overthrow the city of which you have spoken." it clearly tells God had favored him – Hitesh Aug 16 '20 at 8:15

Lot was Abraham's nephew. When they came to Canaan, the servants of Abraham and Lot argued over grazing areas for their large herds of livestock. Abraham and Lot agreed to part ways, with Abraham giving Lot first choice of land. Lot chose the land of the plain of Jordan, near Sodom and Gomorrah, because of the rich pastureland there. Abraham settled near Hebron (Genesis 13). Lot’s choice proved to be a foolish one, as the wickedness of Sodom was very great (verse 13). The grass was greener near Sodom, but greener is not always better. God had determined to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah for the wickedness of the inhabitants (Genesis 18:16–33). Two angels warned Abraham’s nephew Lot to evacuate the city so he and his family would not be destroyed.

The angels told Lot to escape from Sodom, to flee to the hills before the impending destruction of Soddom and Gomorrah by sulfur and fire. Lot begged to be allowed to flee to a little city (subsequently named Zoar, a name which means 'little'). All the cities in the valley were destroyed.

Why did Lot subsequently leave the small city of Zoar and end up living in a cave in the mountains? Because he was afraid. The English Standard Version Study Bible makes this comment:

Although Lot had asked to escape to Zoar (v. 20, 22), the destruction of the valley fills him with such fear that he leaves the city and moves away to live in the hills. There he and his daughters inhabit a cave. Archaeological surveys have revealed that caves around the Dead Sea often served as places of refuge.

The path to Sodom seemed right to Lot, but it almost cost him his life. The road to Zoar seemed right to Lot, but again, he made a poor choice. Unlike his uncle Abraham, Lot did the things he did because he chose to live in his old sin nature and do what was easy, and he made choices to flirt with evil instead of living to honor God.

  • But still God had allowed him to stay in zoar and had not destroyed the city. My question is why was he afraid ??? Afraid of what ? – Hitesh Aug 13 '20 at 17:08
  • Yes, the angels said the city of Zoar would not be destroyed. We don't know how long after the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah before Lot left Zoar and took to the hills. That action suggests he did not trust the word of the angels, that he was still afraid. Perhaps the inhabitants of Zoar were just as wicked as the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah.That Lot was afraid suggests he did not trust God and God's promises, unlike Abraham. Lack of faith results in fear. Rather than looking to God and trusting in Him, Lot took matters into his own hands (again) and the outcome was not good. – Lesley Aug 16 '20 at 15:43
  • Just seen your duplicate question - great answer from Tony Chan. – Lesley Aug 16 '20 at 15:56

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