WOMEN NEEDED IN THE CHURCH
Todayís lessons goes along with other four lessons I did on men needed in the church and men not needed in the church. This morning we will look at women needed in the church and tonight we will look at women not needed in the church. Just as told the women, I want to the guys that while I will be using women as examples today there is still application that can be made to us all, so apply what you to you.
The first example I want to look at comes from a courageous yet humble woman who did what she could to serve God in a dark time of the children of Israel history. I am talking about Deborah. Her story is found in Judges 4. Let take a look at and notice her good characteristics along the way.†
Judges 4:1 When
Ehud was dead, the children of Israel again did evil
in the sight of the LORD.† 2
So the LORD sold them into the hand of Jabin king of Canaan, who reigned in
Hazor. The commander of his army was Sisera, who dwelt in Harosheth
Hagoyim.† 3 And the children
of Israel cried out to the LORD; for Jabin had nine hundred chariots of iron,
and for twenty years he harshly oppressed the children of Israel.† 4 Now Deborah, a prophetess, the
wife of Lapidoth, was judging Israel at that time.
Since the children of
Israel had sinned against God and He allowed them to be oppressed by their
enemy for 20 years. This was a very strong enemy because they possessed 900
chariots of iron which made them seem invincible. This sets the stage for the
first woman to be appointed as a judge over Israel. She is also called a mother
of Israel in Judges 5:7. Of course, Deborah was not the first prophetess in the
Bible, but she was the first and only female judge. She was married, but we
know nothing about her husband other than this brief mentioning of his name.
You have to appreciate this woman rising to the occasion to serve God in this
capacity that was given to her and she also had the respect of Israel.
Judges 4:5 And she would sit under the palm tree of Deborah between
Ramah and Bethel in the mountains of Ephraim. And the children of Israel came
up to her for judgment.† 6
Then she sent and called for Barak the son of Abinoam from Kedesh in Naphtali,
and said to him, "Has not the LORD God of Israel commanded, 'Go and deploy
troops at Mount Tabor; take with you ten thousand men of the sons of
Naphtali and of the sons of Zebulun;† 7 'and against you I will
deploy Sisera, the commander of Jabin's army, with his chariots and his
multitude at the River Kishon; and I will deliver him into your hand'?"
She carried out her
duties as she was supposed to. When the people came to her with their disputes
or questions of the law, she would tell them Godís judgment of the matter. We
can see that God was with her and telling her what to say and do because
summons Barak that God has commanded him to take his men and go destroy Jabinís
army. But notice Barak response,†
Judges 4:8 And
Barak said to her, "If you will go with me, then I will go; but if you
will not go with me, I will not go!"†
9 So she said, "I will surely go with you; nevertheless
there will be no glory for you in the journey you are taking, for the LORD will
sell Sisera into the hand of a woman." Then Deborah arose and went with
Barak to Kedesh.
Now some might ask why he
wanted to bring her along. To me, it seems he wanted to bring her along because
he knew that she was a judge for God and he it would make him feel more
confident knowing he had a messenger of God with him. She agrees to go, but
there will be a consequence. She said, there will be
no glory for you in the journey you are taking, for the LORD will sell Sisera into the hand of a woman."
There are at least two
thoughts on what the consequence would be.
1. Some believe that she
is saying that if you take me with you, you will not receive any glory for this
battle because it will be attributed to me.
2. Deborah is simply
prophesying of how the women Jael would kill Sisera the commander of Jabins
army with her own hands. I personally believe this second view is the correct
one and it also the most popular one.
One thing we know for
sure is that God is going to have a hand in this battle and the honor really
belongs to Him. When I read about Deborah, I see a strong woman who has great
faith in God and is willing to serve the Lord with all her might, but at the
same time she is very humble about it and tries her to best to encourage Barak
to rise to the occasion and put his trust in the Lord. These all great
qualities that we need women to have in the church today. We need women that
are willing rise up and serve in those capacities the God has allowed them to
be in according to N.T. teachings. Though some women under the O.T. system were
allowed to serve in positions that were usually for men, we are not under the
O.T. we are under the N.T. system, so Deborah does not serve as an example for
woman to rise up and take positions in the church that are clearly designated
for men, such a being an elder, deacon, a preacher that preaches over men and
However, we do need women
like Deborah, who are courageous enough to try new roles that are allowed for
them according to Scripture. We need women in the church that help encourage
the men to carry out their roles within the Lordís church. Letís continue the
Judges 4:10 And
Barak called Zebulun and Naphtali to Kedesh; he went up with ten thousand men
under his command, and Deborah went up with him.† 11 Now Heber the Kenite, of the
children of Hobab the father-in-law of Moses, had separated himself from the
Kenites and pitched his tent near the terebinth tree at Zaanaim, which is beside
Kedesh.† 12 And they reported
to Sisera that Barak the son of Abinoam had gone up to Mount Tabor.† 13 So Sisera gathered together all
his chariots, nine hundred chariots of iron, and all the people who were with
him, from Harosheth Hagoyim to the River Kishon.† 14 Then Deborah said to Barak,
"Up! For this is the day in which the LORD has delivered Sisera
into your hand. Has not the LORD gone out before you?" So Barak went down
from Mount Tabor with ten thousand men following him.† 15 And the LORD routed Sisera and
all his chariots and all his army with the edge of the sword
before Barak; and Sisera alighted from his chariot and fled away on
foot.† 16 But Barak pursued
the chariots and the army as far as Harosheth Hagoyim, and all the army of
Sisera fell by the edge of the sword; not a man was left.†
Though Deborah goes with
them, you can see that Barak is the one that is leading his men into battle.
While the children of Israel are on foot and donít have any chariots of iron, †they have something
far better, they have God on their side. Notice 15 again: 15 And the LORD routed Sisera and all his chariots
and all his army with the edge of the sword before Barak.
It was the Lord who
confused this mighty army and they became like scared rabbits and tried to flee,
but Barak and his men chased them and destroyed every last one of them except
for their commander Sisera.
Judges 4: 17
However, Sisera had fled away on foot to the tent of Jael, the wife of Heber
the Kenite; for there was peace between Jabin king of Hazor and the
house of Heber the Kenite.† 18
And Jael went out to meet Sisera, and said to him, "Turn aside, my lord,
turn aside to me; do not fear." And when he had turned aside with her into
the tent, she covered him with a blanket.†
19 Then he said to her, "Please give me a little water
to drink, for I am thirsty." So she opened a jug of milk, gave him a
drink, and covered him.† 20
And he said to her, "Stand at the door of the tent, and if any man comes
and inquires of you, and says, 'Is there any man here?' you shall say, 'No.' "† 21
Then Jael, Heber's wife, took a tent peg and took a hammer in her hand, and
went softly to him and drove the peg into his temple, and it went down into the
ground; for he was fast asleep and weary. So he died.† 22 And then, as Barak pursued
Sisera, Jael came out to meet him, and said to him, "Come, I will show you
the man whom you seek." And when he went into her tent, there lay
Sisera, dead with the peg in his temple.†
23 So on that day God subdued Jabin king of Canaan in the
presence of the children of Israel.† 24
And the hand of the children of Israel grew stronger and stronger against Jabin
king of Canaan, until they had destroyed Jabin king of Canaan.
Here Sisera thought he
was safe and Jael made him feel safe but then while he was sleeping she ran a
tent stake through his head. Now according to historians the women of that
period usually were the ones that drove the tents stakes into the ground as the
tent was being set up so she would be very skilled at using a hammer and a tent
stake. Again, this seems to be what Deborah had in mind when she said that God
would sell Sisera into the hand of a woman. As the text goes on, we see the
children of Israel continue to get stronger and stronger until the completely
defeat their enemy. In Chapter 5 Deborah and Barak sing a song about the battle
they had went through and at the end of this chapter it says they had rest for
Thanks to Deborah embracing the role God gave her and her ability to encourage men like Barak to lead his men in battle by the word of God, the children of Israel had 40 years of rest. Deborah is certainly a great role model for the kind of women we need in the church today.
Our second example comes from Queen Vashti, which I believe was a woman that put her life of the line for the sake of modesty. Notice our text:
Esther 1:10 On the seventh day, when the heart of the
king was merry with wine, he commanded Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha,
Abagtha, Zethar, and Carcas, seven eunuchs who served in the presence of King
to bring Queen Vashti before the king, wearing her royal crown, in order
to show her beauty to the people and the officials, for she was beautiful
to behold.† 12 But Queen
Vashti refused to come at the king's command brought by his eunuchs;
therefore the king was furious, and his anger burned within him.
Our text is too vague to be dogmatic about
the specific reason Queen Vashti refused to go and flaunt herself before these
drunken men. Some believe that she may have been pregnant at this time, others believe that the king was wanting her to come
present herself with nothing but the royal crown on. Whatever it entailed, the
Queen knew that refusing the king would have consequences and she refused
anyway. She was not going to make her beauty into a show for drunken men.
From this, though we do not know the
specifics, we certainly need women in the church that will not flaunt their
beauty to appease to the lustful eye of men. We need women who show their
spiritual beauty by their godly behavior. While the world says, if you got
flaunt it, the Bible says:
1 Timothy 2:9 in like manner also, that the women adorn
themselves in modest apparel, with propriety and moderation, not with braided
hair or gold or pearls or costly clothing,†
10 but, which is proper for women professing godliness, with
Let all women have the spirit of Vashti and
refuse to flaunt their physical beauty even if a king demands and the
consequence could be death. If she could take as stand for modesty against an
irrational king, women today can take stand against an irrational world that
tries to push women to show as much skin a possible.††
Another courageous woman can be seen in this
same book, which we all know is Esther. She also had to put her life on the
line to go before this same irrational king to save her people from all being
slaughtered by a foolish decree he signed by the prodding of Haman. We certain
could use women like Esther in the church today who are not afraid to take a
stand for what is right even if it means their physical death.
Our next example comes from:
Luke 10:38 Now it happened as they went that He entered
a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her
house.† 39 And she had a
sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus' feet and heard His word.† 40 But Martha was distracted with
much serving, and she approached Him and said, "Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone?
Therefore tell her to help me."† 41
And Jesus answered and said to her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and
troubled about many things.† 42
"But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will
not be taken away from her."
Women like Martha may have good intension to
take of all the physical needs around them and make sure everything is just so,
but Mary understood what was important in life and that was sitting at the feet
of Jesus. Now ladies, this does not mean that a filthy home is sign of
spiritual strong woman. Come on, I know some of you were thinking something
like that. No the idea is that we need women in the church like Mary who make
God and His Word their priority. As Jesus said:
Matthew 6:33 "But seek first the kingdom of God and
His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.† 34 "Therefore do not worry
about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for
the day is its own trouble.
Some men have trouble with worrying about
things, but in general women have a tendency to worriers. They are very
concerned about their surroundings and especial things that are out of their
control. So, women a tendency to try and control as much as they can around
them and this can lead to them being like Martha who become so distracted by
the things around them that they lose out on the best part, which is sitting at
the feet of Jesus.
It is easier said than done, but we all we do
better if we learn to make God and His kingdom our priority and not worry so
much about everything physical getting done today. Dishes, lawns, repair work
whatever it is will eventual get done, if not today, tomorrow, or next week.
The point is donít allow the physical to rob you of
the spiritual, which is far more important. We all need to learn to have
balance in our lives with scale tipping more toward God.
Another great example of the kind of women we
need in the church comes from a woman I talked about in last weekís sermon.
Hannah was a woman who trusted in God and was a woman who prayed. Since we
looked at story in detail last week I am not going rehash it all over again, but
I do what to remind of how sad she was that had not had any children. She was
so upset, that she would not even eat, but notice what happens after she prays
1 Samuel 1:10 And she was in
bitterness of soul, and prayed to the LORD and wept in anguish.† 11 Then she made a vow and said,
"O LORD of hosts, if You will indeed look on the affliction of Your
maidservant and remember me, and not forget Your maidservant, but will give
Your maidservant a male child, then I will give him to the LORD all the days of
his life, and no razor shall come upon his head."† 12 And it happened, as she
continued praying before the LORD, that Eli watched her mouth.† 13 Now Hannah spoke in her heart;
only her lips moved, but her voice was not heard. Therefore Eli thought she was
drunk.† 14 So Eli said to her,
"How long will you be drunk? Put your wine away from you!"† 15 And Hannah answered and said,
"No, my lord, I am a woman of sorrowful spirit. I have drunk neither
wine nor intoxicating drink, but have poured out my soul before the LORD.† 16 "Do not consider your
maidservant a wicked woman, for out of the abundance of my complaint and grief
I have spoken until now."† 17
Then Eli answered and said, "Go in peace, and the God of Israel grant your
petition which you have asked of Him."†
18 And she said, "Let your maidservant find favor in
your sight." So the woman went her way and ate, and her face was no longer
I never get tired
of reading this because it shows that she was woman that believed in the power
of prayer. She understood that once she turned her problems over to God that
her load had been lifted and she trusted in His will. It was enough for to know
that God was in control and could answer her prayer. So, she arose and ate and
her face was no longer sad.
We need women in
the church that believe in the power of prayer and can trust that when they
turn their problems over to Him that He will do what is best. Even though our
prayers may be answered in a different way than we expected, we can be thankful
that God is in control and does what is best according His wisdom.
We also need women
in the church like Pricilla.
Acts 18:24 Now a certain Jew named Apollos, born at
Alexandria, an eloquent man and mighty in the Scriptures, came to
Ephesus.† 25 This man had been
instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he spoke and
taught accurately the things of the Lord, though he knew only the baptism of
John.† 26 So he began to speak
boldly in the synagogue. When Aquila and Priscilla heard him, they took him
aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately.
Here we have a
husband and wife that are working together side by side. When you can a wife
and husband that desire to serve the Lord and that encourage one another to do
so, then you have a powerful team that will not only help each stay focused on
serving God, but will serve as a good example of Christian marriage where
husband and wife have set eye on heaven.
Husbands need all
the encouragement they can get from their wives and the same could be said for
the wives. Much good can be done, when husband and wife have the same goal of
reaching heaven, so I hope for those that are married and both are Christians
that you always strive to work together at encouraging each other and being
good examples to other that are around you.
Women that do not
have a believing husband, the Bible also give instructions on how you can
influence your husband toward Christ:
1 Peter 3:1 Wives, likewise, be submissive
to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a
word, may be won by the conduct of their wives,† 2 when they observe your
chaste conduct accompanied by fear.
Whatever you do, donít give up on God and
continue to be a good example to your non-believing mate.
Not only do we need women in the church that
are good Christian wives, we need women in the church that are good Christian
mothers like Eunice an Lois (2 Tim. 1:5; 3:15). These women had great influence
on Timothy and since his father was a Greek, we can surmise that much of
teaching that he learned about the Scriptures can from these two women. A
Christian woman is going to have great influence on their children because they
are usually the ones that around them the most. So, we need Christian women
that conduct themselves with a spirit of Christ and teach their children by example
and by word what a Christian lady is all about it.
I could certainly give you more examples of
godly women from Bible that women today should emulate, but I hope that if you
see that you lacking in any of the good qualities I have mentioned today, that
you will work on improving in those areas. There is always plenty of room for
us grow and improve in, but the main point is for us to continue to serve God
to the best of our abilities and try to improve ourselves every day so that we
can be the best servants for the Lord that can be.
WOMEN NOT NEEDED IN THE CHURCH
This morning we took a brief look at the kind of women we need in the church. Well, just like I did with the men, I think it is important to look at the kind of women we do not need in the church. If you see yourself with the qualities I will be pointing out, I hope you see they are not good qualities to have and I hope you will work on getting these bad qualities out of your life.
The Bible is full of examples for
us to learn from in OT. For example, Paul said the following about the children
1 Corinthians 10:11 Now all these things happened to
them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends
of the ages have come.
It is always good for us to
examine the mistakes that they made, so that we can make sure that we donít
repeat their mistakes. We could learn from Nadab and Abihu about not breaking
Godís command or we can learn a great lesson from how Moses struck the rock
instead of speaking to it, which caused him not to enter the promise land.
We must also learn to look at our own mistakes that we make and learn from them. This is what Abraham told the rich man he should have done.
Luke 16:25 "But Abraham said, 'Son, remember
that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil
things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented.
When we fail to learn from our mistakes, we can find ourselves in the same place as this rich man. So, letís see what we can learn from the mistakes and wrong attitudes of some of the women found in the O.T. and the N.T.
Our first example comes from Jobís wife. I know the Bible does not tell us much about her and I am sure she was lovely lady, but it might make you raise an eyebrow when you consider that Satan could do just about anything he wanted to Job except take his life and he did a lot. His goal was to get him to sin. So, he took away his animals, killed his children and many of his servants but he did not kill his wife and that is all I am saying about that one. Joking aside, the one thing that Jobís wife is known for is this:
Job 2:7 So Satan went out from the presence of the
LORD, and struck Job with painful boils from the sole of his foot to the crown
of his head.† 8 And he took
for himself a potsherd with which to scrape himself while he sat in the midst
of the ashes.† 9 Then his
wife said to him, "Do you still hold fast to your integrity? Curse God and
die!"† 10 But he said to
her, "You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept
good from God, and shall we not accept
adversity?" In all this Job did not sin with his
Job and his wife had been through a lot, but
Job kept his faith in God. While that was a challenge after all that happened
you know it had to sting to hear his wife utter these discouraging words. We
can certainly understand to a degree how difficult of a moment this was, but
this should have been a time with these two came together and worked together
to get through this ordeal, but Jobís wife was being a discourager.
It is hard enough when we get discouraged by
acquaintances or friends, but when your mate discourages you it can be hard to
bear. Of course, this both ways. We need women in the
church that are the opposite of what Jobís wife was being here. We need women
that will encourage their husbands to cling to God during tuff times. We need
women in the church that are encouragers and not discouragers. This certainly
applies to men as well. Negativity is very powerful. In fact researchers say
that it take 5 to 20 positives to balance out one negative when it comes a
One sure way to do damage to congregation is
to have discouragers. While it is easy to think negatively and say negative
discouraging things, we must learn to turn this around in our lives and think
more positively and realize how blessed we are as Christians and how damaging
discouragement can be in the home and the Lordís church.
Another kind of woman we do not need in the
church is deceitful manipulators like Delilah. Letís take a closer look at her
Judges 16:4 Afterward it happened that he loved a
woman in the Valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah.
The story of Sampson is a quite a
story within itself, but at this point is Sampsonís life he meets Delilah. Many assume that he made her
his wife but nowhere in the text does state that she was his wife. It is
possible that she was just another one of the harlots he was staying with at
the time. Whether she was his wife or just a harlot, he met his match with this
lady. Sampson never did have much success with women, His first wife betrayed
him out of fear but Delilah would betray him for money.
The Philistines offered her 1100
pieces of silver to find out what the source of his strength was. So she began
to press him and work her charm on him to find out what his secret was and so
begins the manipulation game.
1. Judges 16:6 So Delilah said to
Samson, "Please tell me where your great strength lies, and with
what you may be bound to afflict you."†
7 And Samson said to her, "If they bind me with seven
fresh bowstrings, not yet dried, then I shall become weak, and be like any other
man."† 8 So the lords
of the Philistines brought up to her seven fresh bowstrings, not yet dried, and
she bound him with them.† 9
Now men were lying in wait, staying with her in the room. And she said
to him, "The Philistines are upon you, Samson!" But he broke
the bowstrings as a strand of yarn breaks when it touches fire. So the secret
of his strength was not known.
Delilah was doing her best to find
out what Sampsonís secret was. Of course, Sampson lied about it and Delilah put
it to the test and she found out that Samson lied. Since the Philistines stayed
hidden he apparently thought this was just some kind of game, and the game
2. Judges 16:10 Then Delilah said to
Samson, "Look, you have mocked me and told me lies. Now, please tell me
what you may be bound with."† 11
So he said to her, "If they bind me securely with new ropes that have
never been used, then I shall become weak, and be like any other man."† 12 Therefore Delilah took new
ropes and bound him with them, and said to him, "The Philistines are upon
you, Samson!" And men were lying in wait, staying in the room. But
he broke them off his arms like a thread.
Just like before she yelled out
that Philistines are upon you and he jumped and freed himself from these new
ropes. Now I am sure we have all heard the saying fool me once shame on but
fool me twice shame on me. Well, you would think that that Samson would start
to figure things out but he just couldnít see it. I guess he was blinded by his
love thinking only the best about Delilah. Time for round 3.
3. Judges 16:13 Delilah said to Samson, "Until
now you have mocked me and told me lies. Tell me what you may be bound
with." And he said to her, "If you weave the seven locks of my head
into the web of the loom" Ė
Once again Sampson lied, and once
again, he was able to break from web of the loom. Then Delilah pulled out one
of the oldest manipulation tricks in the book:
Judges 16:15 Then she said to him, "How can you say,
'I love you,' when your heart is not with me? You have mocked me these
three times, and have not told me where your great strength lies." 16 And it came to pass, when she pestered
him daily with her words and pressed him, so that his soul was vexed to
death, 17 that he told her all his heart, and
said to her, "No razor has ever come upon my head, for I have beena Nazirite to God from
my mother's womb. If I am shaven, then my strength will leave me, and I shall
become weak, and be like any other man." 18 When Delilah saw that he had told her
all his heart, she sent and called for the lords of the Philistines, saying,
"Come up once more, for he has told me all his heart." So the lords
of the Philistines came up to her and brought the money in their hand. 19 Then she lulled him to sleep on her
knees, and called for a man and had him shave off the seven locks of his head.
Then she began to torment him, and his strength left him. 20 And she said, "The Philistines are upon you, Samson!" So he
awoke from his sleep, and said, "I will go out as before, at other times,
and shake myself free!" But he did not know that the LORD had departed
from him. 21 Then the Philistines took him and put
out his eyes, and brought him down to Gaza.
They bound him with bronze fetters, and he became a grinder in the prison.
It is kind of hard to believe that
Sampson was so blinded by love that he did not see the train wreck coming, but
this just shows how powerful one person can be over another especial if that
person thinks they have nothing to fear. We certainly do not need women or men
for that matter in the church who will try to manipulate others for their own
gain because people with this kind of attitude only think about themselves and
how they can make things better for them. Nothing good will ever come from
those who have the spirit of Delilah. Judas did what Delilah did except he
betrayed Jesus for money.
The Bible teaches us to have just
the opposite attitude:
Philippians 2:1 Therefore if there
is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of
the Spirit, if any affection and mercy,† 2
fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one
accord, of one mind.† 3 Let
nothing be done through selfish
ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better
than himself.† 4 Let each of
you look out not only for his own interests, but also
for the interests of others.
Is this always easy to do? No, but it is the
attitude we are supposed to have, and when we strive to live up to this
standard, there is little chance that we will have the attitude of Delilah.
Another kind of woman we do not need in the church is women like Lotís wife. In Luke 17, Jesus was teaching His disciples to always live their lives for the Lord so they will be prepared for the Day of Judgment. After He taught them this great lesson, He told them,
Luke 17:32 "Remember Lot's wife.
The first thing I want to point is that Lot and his wife were honoring what God taught about marriage.
Matthew 19:5 For this reason a man shall
leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become
However, they found themselves living in a corrupt city where all kinds of sinful things were taken place including homosexuality. The awful behavior of those in that city and their destruction is used as an example in:
Jude 1:7 as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities
around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to
sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example,
suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
When you live the life of sin, you will face the eternal consequences. Because these people of Sodom and Gomorrah were so corrupt, God was going to destroy that city, but God was going to give Lot and his family the opportunity to escape before the destruction happened because when the two angels went to the city, Lot took them in and protected them and this is what they told them.
Genesis 19:12 Then the men said to Lot, "Have
you anyone else here? Son-in-law, your sons, your daughters, and whomever you
have in the city -- take them out of this
place! 13 "For we will destroy this place, because the
outcry against them has grown great before the face of the LORD,
and the LORD has sent us to destroy it." 14 So Lot went
out and spoke to his sons-in-law, who had married his daughters, and said,
"Get up, get out of this place; for the LORD will destroy this city!"
But to his sons-in-law he seemed to be joking. 15 When the
morning dawned, the angels urged Lot to hurry, saying, "Arise,
take your wife and your two daughters who are here, lest you be consumed in the
punishment of the city." 16 And while he lingered, the men
took hold of his hand, his wife's hand, and the hands of his two daughters, the
LORD being merciful to him, and they brought him out and set him outside the
city. 17 So it came to pass, when they had brought them
outside, that he said, "Escape for your life! Do not look behind you nor
stay anywhere in the plain. Escape to the mountains, lest you be
God had given Lot and his family the opportunity to escape since they were the only righteous people in that wicked city and they ran for their lives, but remember one of the commands was not to look back, but watch what happens in:
Genesis 19:24 Then the LORD rained brimstone and
fire on Sodom and Gomorrah, from the LORD out of the
heavens. 25 So He overthrew those cities, all the plain, all
the inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the
ground. 26 But his wife looked back behind him, and she became
a pillar of salt.
Since Lotís wife disobeyed the instructions that were given to her and looked back, she lost her life. Even though this is a sad story, we can learn several things about the mistake she made.
The first thing we learn about her mistakes is that God is serious when it comes to obeying all of commands. Not only was she supposed to flee, she was not supposed to look back, but she did and it cost her life. This show how one sin can be fatal. This teaches us that we should always work hard at remaining faithful to God and if we do sin, we need to repent as Jesus said,
Luke 13:3 "I tell you, no; but unless you
repent you will all likewise perish.
We should never treat sin lightly because you never know what it may cause. For example, in Acts 5, Ananias and Sapphire both lost their lives when they lied to the Holy Spirit.
Ezekiel 18:24 " But when a righteous man turns
away from his righteousness and commits iniquity, and does according to all the
abominations that the wicked man does, shall he live? All the
righteousness which he has done shall not be remembered; because of the
unfaithfulness of which he is guilty and the sin which he has committed,
because of them he shall die.
Under the O.T., people who lived in sin were to be put to death, but even under the O.T. there was a way of avoiding death.
Ezekiel 18:21 " But if a wicked man turns from
all his sins which he has committed, keeps all My statutes, and does what is
lawful and right, he shall surely live; he shall not
die. 22 "None of the transgressions which he has committed
shall be remembered against him; because of the righteousness which he has done,
he shall live.
So from the OT and the NT we learn the importance of obeying Godís Word, and if we sin we need to take care of the sin right away by repenting.
The second thing we can learn from Lotís wife is that she perished even though she was married to a righteous man as Peter proclaims in:
2 Peter 2:6 and turning the cities of Sodom and
Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them to destruction,
making them an example to those who afterward would live ungodly; 7 and delivered righteous Lot, who
was oppressed by the filthy conduct of the wicked 8 (for
that righteous man, dwelling among them, tormented his righteous soul
from day to day by seeing and hearing their lawless deeds)
This teaches us that no matter how righteous our mate may be or how much we surround ourselves with righteous people, they cannot save you because you are responsible for your own actions, and you must give account of how you lived your life. So, just as Lot could not save his wife by his obedience, no one else can save you by their obedience.
Another thing we learn from lots wife is even though she had a strong desire to be saved, she still perished. She was heading the right direction, but she allowed herself to get distracted and she looked back.
There are many that are like this today. They have a desire to be saved, and they may even start down the right path, but they get distracted and the look back, which causes them to get back on the wide road that leads to destruction. Jesus said,
Luke 9:62 "No one, having put his
hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for
the kingdom of God."
As Christians, we must be careful that we donít allow the world to district and cause us to take our eyes off our goal of getting to heaven, if we do, we could find ourselves far removed from God. John said,
1 John 2:15 Do not love the world or the things
in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in
him. 16 For all that is in the world -- the lust of
the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life -- is not of the Father
but is of the world. 17 And the world is passing away, and the
lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.
The world has a lot of temptations to tempt us with, but as Jesus taught we must keep looking toward heaven, and remind ourselves that the temporary pleasures of the world are not worth losing the eternal happiness we will receive in heaven Jesus said,
Mark 8:36 "For what will it
profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses
his own soul?
So, donít allow the world to cause you to look back and lose your soul. More could be said about Lotís wife, but from what I have pointed out we certainly do not need women in the church like her that are unfocused and easily distracted away from obey Godís commands.
There are certainly more women in the Bible we could look at like the most wicked women recorded in the Bible, Jezebel, who was self-serving and did many wicked deeds, or we could look Herodias, who wicked in own right, We could talk about the busybodies that Paul warns against in writings and the list could go on and on. The important thing is for us a Christian men and women, is to learn from the mistakes of these men and women we have looked at in these series of lessons to make sure we are not like them. On the flip side, we should also learn from the examples of the faithful men and women we looked at and try our best to emulate the great qualities. We should be thankful that the Bible is full of examples for us to learn from.
I cannot stress this enough, if you find that you have some of the of bad qualities of these men and women we have examined, recognize this weakness for what it is, and do what you can to change it because you know it is not a quality that a Christian should have.