Genesis: The Three Visitors & Abraham Pleads for Sodom

Genesis 18:1-33

The Three Visitors

The Lord comes to visit Abraham with two other men. Abraham rushes over to greet the three of them, and offer food and water to wash their feet. Abraham goes to his first wife Sarah and tells her to bake some bread. Then Abraham, knowing of the Lord’s hunger for the infantile flesh of young bovines, chooses a calf and orders his servant to prepare it for his guests. Abraham then brings to his guests some curds, milk, and the prepared calf. While they ate, Abraham stands near them under a tree. They ask where his wife Sarah is, and Abraham tells them she is in the tent. The Lord tells Abraham, again, that when he returns in a year, Sarah will give birth to a son. Sarah was eavesdropping, and when she heard this she laughed. Because she is old, so how could she give birth to a child? The Lord responds to her laughter by posing this rhetorical question to her: ‘Is anything too hard for the Lord?’ The obvious answer to this question–if the Judaeo-Christian God, or any deity, does in-fact exist, which there is little evidence to support such an claim–is indeed yes, or, for those that do believe in this deity, it must be yes to reconcile their deity’s contempt for the suffering of billions of our fellow humans. I am of course alluding to that famous Epicurus quote that we Atheist enjoy so much. I hesitate to get into a discussion on the famous quote of Epicurus because first, I think it is slightly contrived, and second, I think there will be a more opportune time to discuss it. If you are not familiar with Epicurus’s argument then do so with haste. It is a philosophical argument that all should at least ponder on for a moment. Now, Sarah lies and tells the Lord that she did not laugh, but the Lord calls her out on her lie, and say, ‘Yes, you did laugh’.

Abraham Pleads for Sodom

The three men get up to leave and Abraham walk with them to see them out. The men look upon Sodom, and the Lord plans to go there to see if the people of Sodom deserve his wrath for their sins. The Lord questions whether He should tell his servant his plans, but in the end decides to do so. Abraham asks the Lord, what if there are fifty people who are righteous, will you spare the city for them? The Lord says he would spare it. Abraham goes on to ask the same question, but each time lowering the number of people who are righteous until he gets to ten people. The Lord each time says he would spare the city if said number of righteous people were found in the city. Abraham is obviously interested because, if you remember, his nephew Lot lives in Sodom. When the two finish their discussion they part.

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