What Was The City Of Sin From The Bible?

What was the city that the Bible called “the city of sin?”

What is Sin?

The Apostle John tells us precisely what sin is. He says that “sin is lawlessness” (1st John 3:4) and that Law is the Law of God, which most certainly includes the Ten Commandments but also Jesus’ commands in the New Testament. Christians are declared saints by God but we’re also called sinners but the difference between the believer and the unbeliever is that one’s sins have been taken on by Christ at the cross; the unbeliever will have to bear their own sins (Rev 20:12-15). Sin separates us from God (Isaiah 59:2) but Jesus reconciles us back to God and lifts our condemnation (Rom 8:1) so now we can be at peace with God (Rom 5:1), making possible the peace of God.

Sin Cities?

Are there really such things as “sin cities?” I’ve heard people call Las Vegas sin city but since every city have people in them, in the strictest sense, all cities are full of sinners who all fall far short of God’s glory (Rom 3:23) and that makes every city a sin city because they’re sinners in them, including me! Yes, Las Vegas might be ahead of the curve but what goes on in the human heart can be just as bad as Jeremiah writes “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it” (Jer 17:9)? Sin is cosmic treason because we were made in the image of God (Gen 1::27) and God did not create us to be liars yet the Word of God declares “God is not man, that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it” (Numb 23:19) because “it is impossible for God to lie” (6:18). Paul is crystal clear about the natures of God and of man, writing “Let God be true though every one were a liar, as it is written, “That you may be justified in your words, and prevail when you are judged” (Rom 3:4).

Then-the-Lord-rained-on (1)

Was Sodom Sin City?

Lot was living in the most sinful city that there was at the time, at least that we know of from the Bible. When the two men (which were angels) found Lot, he was in the gates of the city which indicates that he must have been silent about his faith in God because they wouldn’t have had Lot “sitting in the gate of Sodom” (Gen 19:1) if he’d been witnessing about God’s righteousness. To sit “in the gate” meant that he was one of the cities leaders. This is where the angels found him and they tried to have him flee the city right away but Lot urged the angels to spend the night with him (Gen 19:2-3) so they did. The next morning, the angels “said to Lot, “Have you anyone else here? Sons-in-law, sons, daughters, or anyone you have in the city, bring them out of the place. For we are about to destroy this place, because the outcry against its people has become great before the Lord, and the Lord has sent us to destroy it.” So Lot went out and said to his sons-in-law, who were to marry his daughters, “Up! Get out of this place, for the Lord is about to destroy the city. But he seemed to his sons-in-law to be jesting” (Gen 19:12-14). That indicates that Lot’s son-in-laws didn’t flee Sodom with Lot and his family to escape God’s punishment on Sodom. As the time of God’s judgment approached, Lot “lingered. So the men seized him and his wife and his two daughters by the hand, the Lord being merciful to him, and they brought him out and set him outside the city. And as they brought them out, one said, “Escape for your life. Do not look back or stop anywhere in the valley. Escape to the hills, lest you be swept away” (Gen 19:16-17). By Lot lingering, he was showing that he really didn’t want to leave Sodom, just like Lot’s wife didn’t, and when she looked back, she became a pillar of salt (Gen 19:26).

A Nation’s Fate

A cities fate will end up the same as a nation would if they refused to live in righteousness. There is clearly a cause and effect relationship as Solomon wrote “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people” (Prov 14:34) and the same could be said of a city. God appeared to Solomon at night and told him “if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land” (2nd Chron 7:14) “But if you turn aside and forsake my statutes and my commandments that I have set before you, and go and serve other gods and worship them, then I will pluck you up from my land that I have given you, and this house that I have consecrated for my name, I will cast out of my sight, and I will make it a proverb and a byword among all peoples”(2nd Chron 7:19-20). Those are the only two choices they have. That’s it. A city or nation can Live righteously and thrive or forsake God and His commandments and people will be astonished at what happened (2nd Chron 7:21).

Conclusion

Today, there is no shortage of sin in both city and country. Only a perfect sacrifice that was found in the spotless Jesus Christ Who voluntarily presented Himself would be sufficient to save such a sinner as me and you. For this purpose, He offered His own shed blood for the forgiveness of sins and granting those who repent and believe eternal life.

Article by Jack Wellman

Jack Wellman is Pastor of the Mulvane Brethren Church in Mulvane Kansas. Jack is also the Senior Writer at What Christians Want To Know whose mission is to equip, encourage, and energize Christians and to address questions about the believer’s daily walk with God and the Bible. You can follow Jack on Google Plus or check out his book Teaching Children the Gospel available on Amazon.

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  • pud

    “the difference between the believer and the unbeliever is that one’s sins have been taken on by Christ at the cross”

    Scapegoating….the ancient superstitious practice of placing the sins of a tribe onto a goat, casting it out into the desert to die.

    Sorry “believers” human sacrifice doesn’t work any better than animal sacrifice. Your superstitious scapegoating, be it casting a virgin into a volcano, cutting the heart out of some poor sod on an Aztec altar or killing a guy on a cross, doesn’t absolve you of your nasty deeds no matter how babyish your wish thinking.

    “A pillar of salt” LOL For the egregious “sin” of looking back at the celestial carpet bombing your “merciful” god dished out…jack, really?

    Bla bla bla …shed blood, human sacrifice, “gods” only…bla bla bla Jack, you would have made a fine Aztec high priest

    • Frank

      How embarrassing for you.

      • pud

        What a splendid rational argument frank!

        • Frank

          Don’t blame me for embarrassing yourself.

          • pud

            That’s not an argument frank. Perhaps you can point out the errors I’ve made? Give it a try…

          • Frank

            Who needs to argue? You haven’t presented anything worth arguing about.

          • pud

            Well you’re not very astute then are you? Explain to me the need and virtue of scapegoating. Explain to me how your guilt is washed away by virtue of a human sacrifice. Explain to me how sacrificing virgins is different from “god” sacrificing himself to himself. (explain how this “sacrifice” is actually a “sacrifice” at all seeing as your jesus is alive an well) I’m waiting….

          • Frank

            So embarrassing for you… Wow.

          • pud

            As I thought…have a nice day frank. Come back when you actually have something to say.

          • Frank

            I said all that needs to be said.

    • A-person

      Greetings pud, and thank you for your response.

      You say substitutionary sacrifice doesn’t absolve you of
      your nasty deeds. I wonder how you can claim to know this? as it seems to
      require special knowledge of the justice system in place. Even in human courts,
      it is the judge who decides what absolves one of a crime, not the criminal. If
      the ultimate judge of all people is willing to accept a substitution, then isn’t
      that what really matters? It might not make sense to you, but we all must come
      to terms with the fact that truth is not constrained by what makes sense to us.

      Pud, you are aghast at the thought that a merciful god would
      destroy a city containing men, women and children. I empathize with you that this
      is a difficult concept. But if in fact he inhabits eternity, exists outside of
      time, space and matter, if he created everything, and holds everything together
      (and I trust that you know something about cosmology, astronomy, physics and
      biology to know this is no small feat), then isn’t it only reasonable to acknowledge
      that his mind is so much greater, his knowledge and insight so much deeper, his
      perspective so much broader and wider than ours? As with all truth, the
      question of whether he is merciful is not constrained by our ability to grasp
      and understand it.

      I beg you to consider that there is far more than can be
      imagined by our limited capacities. I implore you to step down from the seat of
      judgment and humbly accept the lowly position an honest and enlightened assessment
      warrants. After all, we are weak creatures confined to a speck of dust
      revolving around a small star sitting among billions of other stars in a vast
      galaxy among billions of galaxies in a vast universe. Do you really think from
      this perspective any of us can truly grasp the deepest mysteries of life,
      existence and eternity? I’m not asking you to believe, only to recognize your
      lack of capacity to know for certain and to be open to the possibility of alternative
      reasonable explanations.

      • pud

        It is you who make the claim that it does. Explain the physics and mechanism by which your deed and guilt for it can be “undone” Explain how heaping the sins of a tribe on a goat and casting it off to die rids the tribe of its sin….waiting…

        Explain how “he” “exists” first of all and then tell me the physics of “existing” outside of space and time…waiting

        Explain to me how anything can fit the definition of “existing” and not be of “matter”…waiting

        I am open to all “reasonable” “rational” “empirical” “verifiable” explanations for everything…I am not open to made up superstitious nonsense…there is a difference

        Please provide actual examples in reality of these claims of yours

        • A-person

          Did I claim it does? I said the only one who can ultimately know whether something can or cannot absolve is the judge, and this is entirely reasonable. Any discussion of “absolution” must imply a crime and a justice system.

          When you claim that “killing a guy on a cross doesn’t absolve”, are you saying you are certain of this? And if so, I am curious as to how you know this to be true.

          As for my explaining how all these things work, I thought my position was clear that I am open to things being true that I don’t fully understand. Are we to conclude that he can’t exist outside of space and time because we can’t understand how? Is truth constrained by what we are capable of understanding? This does not at all seem like a reasonable stance to me.

          The real question is: how open are our minds to these possibilities? I’d like to say mine is fairly open to them, and I find both positions reasonable. Do you find one reasonable and the other not?

          • pud

            No. A “judge” can hold you not liable but he cannot absolve you of guilt or responsibility. You could for example kill 3 people because you were driving drunk…the judge might let you off without penalty but no judge can absolve you of the guilt or the responsibility. Or.. a judge may allow your best friend to do the jail time for you….you don’t suffer the penalty but you still will ALWAYS be the guilty party and the responsible one. That can never be undone by any means.

            Yes we are to conclude “he” cannot “exist” outside of space and time. “Outside of space and time” is not a place at all. There is no place “outside” of space…space has no edge, no boundary…there is no outside of it! It’s eternal and infinite. “Existence” is defined by having certain properties that are defined by space and time. To “exist” means that you have shape, are material, are made of matter, have the property of location. You cannot “exist” outside of space and time as those are the very things that define existence.

            It is not a “possibility” to claim that horses exist between the stars. There are no set of values that could ever allow for an air breathing mammal to exist in interstellar space. So entertaining this is stupid as it is not ever possible. The same for all “gods” It is stupid to entertain ideas of “gods” existing outside of space and time because there is NO OUTSIDE of space and time.

            So it’s not a question of being open minded it’s a question of reality vs. woo woo I don’t have to know everything about the universe to KNOW that your conception of god CANNOT exist.

          • Doug Barron

            Hey, PUDDY!
            I am iimpressed! You are a flat earther! Who’d a thunk it?! Got some messed up woo woo there PUD!
            Your mind and intellect is in one very teeny tiny little box with no air holes in it.
            You are revealing an appalling lack of any basic understanding of space-time continuum, eternal perspective of existence and omniscience. I really love you, but you must really come out of the dark corner of the asylum and enjoy some light and fresh air for a change, before the box squeeses ALL the juice out of your brain!
            By the way, the jello was great! Did you enjoy it too, or did you opt for the Cream of Wheat? Just write it down and sail it to me across the dining hall!

          • pud

            Your homework assignment when your meds kick in…

            Write a one page article explaining “eternal perspective of existence and omniscience”

            LOL

          • Doug Barron

            Sorry PUD,
            Can’t take assignment from a fellow inmate, much less one who is so fearful that it hides behind a blank avatar and a pseudonym for a name, a rather nasty one at that.
            But, I really do love you, PUD! There’s always hope for everyone. Just ask Pastor Wellman!

      • pud

        The funniest part of this is your pleading for me to be humble because of our insignificance in the universe yet you and your fellow cult members have the answers for every mystery there ever was, is or will be. I submit to you sir that it is YOU who lacks humility not I. I at least have the integrity to say “I don’t know” when confronted with a mystery, you cannot claim such can you? You know the past, present and future destiny of everything with some of you so bold as to proclaim the exact hour! LOL (how have those prophecies worked out?) And if that wasn’t bad enough! You claim all this infinite knowledge based upon a bronze age book! Cobbed together by goat herders in the desert and zealot dark age priests! YOU accept this as the final statement on truth and claim that it is perfect with no need to question or examine any of the ridiculous claims therein. Now that’s funny dude

        • A-person

          I just think it’s reasonable to consider that if there were a mind capable of creating and sustaining the universe as we know it, then that mind would be far greater than mine, and that I might not share the same depth of knowledge, insight and perspective.

          By the way, you mention above that I can’t say “I don’t know”, and go on to assert that I claim to know all these different things. In fact, the very heart of my reply is the recognition that we have a limited capacity to understand these deep mysteries. Take another look at what I wrote and let me know if you still wish to ascribe these things to me.

          • pud

            If there were a “mind” capable of creating the universe it could as well be a race of beings a billion years more evolved than ourselves…aliens running an experiment…does not imply a “god” let alone Yahweh the burning bush god.

            Obviously if there was such a species then we would be woefully incapable of knowing what they know…again, no “god” implied

            I’m reminded of a great story….about a cat and a dog…The dog has you feed him, protect him, give him affection and love…he thinks you’re god….The cat has you feed him, protect him, give him affection and love…he thinks “HE’S god! LOL See how perceptions can be so different and gods so easily conceived?

            I only “claim” what I can show.

            Your “limited capacity” leads to “god” that is what all religions do and have done from the very first gaze upwards. That is your default position also called an “argument from ignorance”