The Sin of Sodom

In a recent episode of the Iron Rod Podcast, we discussed:

2 Nephi 13:9
The show of their countenance doth witness against them, and doth declare their sin to be even as Sodom, and they cannot hide it. Wo unto their souls, for they have rewarded evil unto themselves!

Searcher made the observation that most modern Christians assume this sin is homosexuality, but the Old Testament spells out what the sin of Sodom was.

Ezekiel 16:49-50
49 Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good.

Afterwards, a listener contacted me with another great observation. In the 1833 Book of Commandments, the Lord said:

And now if this generation do harden their hearts against my word, behold I will deliver them up unto Satan, for he reigneth and hath much power at this time, for he hath got great hold upon the hearts of the people of this generation: and not far from the iniquities of Sodom and Gomorrah, do they come at this time: and behold the sword of justice hangeth over their heads, and if they persist in the hardness of their hearts, the time cometh that it must fall upon them.

This listener pointed out that there wasn’t a large LGBTQ demographic in 1833, so the iniquities of Sodom and Gomorrah that the Lord is referring to don’t appear to be sexual in nature. What was going on in 1833? Poor immigrants struggling to survive after fleeing poverty in their home countries. Slavery. Oppression.

That got me thinking about how we are doing 200 years later. While we don’t have institutionalized slavery, we hear of isolated cases of immigrants basically being used as slaves here in the US. Lurking in the shadows are more insidious forms of enslavement. The press has just barely begun to shine the light into the doings of Jeffrey Epstein and the rich and famous he catered to. The Super Bowl is coming up soon – supposedly the largest sexual trafficking event in the world.

Tragically, you and I are indirectly supporting many of these sins of Sodom and Gomorrah. There are rare earth materials used in modern electronics that are primarily found in war-torn regions of Africa like the Congo. Known as conflict minerals, they provide the economic engine that enables local warlords to kidnap children to be part of their army and then use them to enslave local populations to mine for these conflict minerals. To its credit, the electronics industry has been working to establish procedures to certify minerals as coming from conflict-free suppliers. Yet someone is still buying and using the minerals mined by the warlords. Sadly, they are almost assuredly in the phones and computers we are using to read this blog, listen to the Iron Rod Podcast, and search the scriptures.

Truly we live in Babylon. I’m not sure it’s possible for anyone to live today without being contaminated in one degree or another with the blood and sins of this generation. Awful is our state. We are captives in Egypt waiting for a Moses to deliver us, because only power from on high can save us from our current state.

5 thoughts on “The Sin of Sodom

  1. And this from Isaiah 1

    10 Hear the word of the Lord, ye rulers of Sodom; give ear unto the law of our God, ye people of Gomorrah.

    11 To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith the Lord: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats.

    12 When ye come to appear before me, who hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts?

    13 Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting.

    14 Your new moons and your appointed beasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them.

    15 And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood.

    16 Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;

    17 Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.

  2. I know we tend to stick to the scriptures, but the Book of Jasher has a fascinating account of the Sin of Sodom. It may not be 100% accurate, but it paints their serious corruption and mistreatment of the poor.

    It’s a kind of lengthy excerpt, but I think some readers might benefit from this perspective of just how corrupt and sinful Sodom was, if this book is accurate about it. I can also see how some of our laws and miscarriages of justice may appear close to the corrupt laws of Sodom. Also how having plenty while not providing for the poor – a lot of parallels to today.

    http://johnpratt.com/items/docs/jasher.html#Jash_18

    Jash 18:11 In those days all the people of Sodom and Gomorrah, and of the whole five cities, were exceedingly wicked and sinful against the Lord and they provoked the Lord with their abominations, and they strengthened in aging abominably and scornfully before the Lord, and their wickedness and crimes were in those days great before the Lord.

    Jash 18:12 And they had in their land a very extensive valley, about half a day’s walk, and in it there were fountains of water and a great deal of herbage surrounding the water.

    Jash 18:13 And all the people of Sodom and Gomorrah went there four times in the year, with their wives and children and all belonging to them, and they rejoiced there with timbrels and dances.

    Jash 18:14 And in the time of rejoicing they would all rise and lay hold of their neighbor’s wives, and some, the virgin daughters of their neighbors, and they enjoyed them, and each man saw his wife and daughter in the hands of his neighbor and did not say a word.

    Jash 18:15 And they did so from morning to night, and they afterward returned home each man to his house and each woman to her tent; so they always did four times in the year.

    Jash 18:16 Also when a stranger came into their cities and brought goods which he had purchased with a view to dispose of there, the people of these cities would assemble, men, women and children, young and old, and go to the man and take his goods by force, giving a little to each man until there was an end to all the goods of the owner which he had brought into the land.

    Jash 18:17 And if the owner of the goods quarreled with them, saying, What is this work which you have done to me, then they would approach to him one by one, and each would show him the little which he took and taunt him, saying, I only took that little which thou didst give me; and when he heard this from them all, he would arise and go from them in sorrow and bitterness of soul, when they would all arise and go after him, and drive him out of the city with great noise and tumult.

    Jash 18:18 And there was a man from the country of Elam who was leisurely going on the road, seated upon his ass, which carried a fine mantle of divers colors, and the mantle was bound with a cord upon the ass.

    Jash 18:19 And the man was on his journey passing through the street of Sodom when the sun set in the evening, and he remained there in order to abide during the night, but no one would let him into his house; and at that time there was in Sodom a wicked and mischievous man, one skillful to do evil, and his name was Hedad.

    Jash 18:20 And he lifted up his eyes and saw the traveler in the street of the city, and he came to him and said, Whence comest thou and whither dost thou go?

    Jash 18:21 And the man said to him, I am traveling from Hebron to Elam where I belong, and as I passed the sun set and no one would suffer me to enter his house, though I had bread and water and also straw and provender for my ass, and am short of nothing.

    Jash 18:22 And Hedad answered and said to him, All that thou shalt want shall be supplied by me, but in the street thou shalt not abide all night.

    Jash 18:23 And Hedad brought him to his house, and he took off the mantle from the ass with the cord, and brought them to his house, and he gave the ass straw and provender whilst the traveler ate and drank in Hedad’s house, and he abode there that night.

    Jash 18:24 And in the morning the traveler rose up early to continue his journey, when Hedad said to him, Wait, comfort thy heart with a morsel of bread and then go, and the man did so; and he remained with him, and they both ate and drank together during the day, when the man rose up to go.

    Jash 18:25 And Hedad said to him, Behold now the day is declining, thou hadst better remain all night that thy heart may be comforted; and he pressed him so that he tarried there all night, and on the second day he rose up early to go away, when Hedad pressed him, saying, Comfort thy heart with a morsel of bread and then go, and he remained and ate with him also the second day, and then the man rose up to continue his journey.

    Jash 18:26 And Hedad said to him, Behold now the day is declining, remain with me to comfort thy heart and in the morning rise up early and go thy way.

    Jash 18:27 And the man would not remain, but rose and saddled his ass, and whilst he was saddling his ass the wife of Hedad said to her husband, Behold this man has remained with us for two days eating and drinking and he has given us nothing, and now shall he go away from us without giving anything? and Hedad said to her, Be silent.

    Jash 18:28 And the man saddled his ass to go, and he asked Hedad to give him the cord and mantle to tie it upon the ass.

    Jash 18:29 And Hedad said to him, What sayest thou? And he said to him, That thou my lord shalt give me the cord and the mantle made with divers colors which thou didst conceal with thee in thy house to take care of it.

    Jash 18:30 And Hedad answered the man, saying, This is the interpretation of thy dream, the cord which thou didst see, means that thy life will be lengthened out like a cord, and having seen the mantle colored with all sorts of colors, means that thou shalt have a vineyard in which thou wilt plant trees of all fruits.

    Jash 18:31 And the traveler answered, saying, Not so my lord, for I was awake when I gave thee the cord and also a mantle woven with different colors, which thou didst take off the ass to put them by for me; and Hedad answered and said, Surely I have told thee the interpretation of thy dream and it is a good dream, and this is the interpretation thereof.

    Jash 18:32 Now the sons of men give me four pieces of silver, which is my charge for interpreting dreams, and of thee only I require three pieces of silver.

    Jash 18:33 And the man was provoked at the words of Hedad, and he cried bitterly, and he brought Hedad to Serak judge of Sodom.

    Jash 18:34 And the man laid his cause before Serak the judge, when Hedad replied, saying, It is not so, but thus the matter stands; and the judge said to the traveler, This man Hedad telleth thee truth, for he is famed in the cities for the accurate interpretation of dreams.

    Jash 18:35 And the man cried at the word of the judge, and he said, Not so my Lord, for it was in the day that I gave him the cord and mantle which was upon the ass, in order to put them by in his house; and they both disputed before the judge, the one saying, Thus the matter was, and the other declaring otherwise.

    Jash 18:36 And Hedad said to the man, Give me four pieces of silver that I charge for my interpretations of dreams; I will not make any allowance; and give me the expense of the four meals that thou didst eat in my house.

    Jash 18:37 And the man said to Hedad, Truly I will pay thee for what I ate in thy house, only give me the cord and mantle which thou didst conceal in thy house.

    Jash 18:38 And Hedad replied before the judge and said to the man, Did I not tell thee the interpretation of thy dream? the cord means that thy days shall be prolonged like a cord, and the mantle, that thou wilt have a vineyard in which thou wilt plant all kinds of fruit trees.

    Jash 18:39 This is the proper interpretation of thy dream, now give me the four pieces of silver that I require as a compensation, for I will make thee no allowance.

    Jash 18:40 And the man cried at the words of Hedad and they both quarreled before the judge, and the judge gave orders to his servants, who drove them rashly from the house.

    Jash 18:41 And they went away quarreling from the judge, when the people of Sodom heard them, and they gathered about them and they exclaimed against the stranger, and they drove him rashly from the city.

    Jash 18:42 And the man continued his journey upon his ass with bitterness of soul, lamenting and weeping.

    Jash 18:43 And whilst he was going along he wept at what had happened to him in the corrupt city of Sodom.

    Jasher Chapter 19

    Jash 19:1 And the cities of Sodom had four judges to four cities, and these were their names, Serak in the city of Sodom, Sharkad in Gomorrah, Zabnac in Admah, and Menon in Zeboyim.

    Jash 19:2 And Eliezer Abraham’s servant applied to them different names, and he converted Serak to Shakra, Sharkad to Shakrura, Zebnac to Kezobim, and Menon to Matzlodin.

    Jash 19:3 And by desire of their four judges the people of Sodom and Gomorrah had beds erected in the streets of the cities, and if a man came to these places they laid hold of him and brought him to one of their beds, and by force made him to lie in them.

    Jash 19:4 And as he lay down, three men would stand at his head and three at his feet, and measure him by the length of the bed, and if the man was less than the bed these six men would stretch him at each end, and when he cried out to them they would not answer him.

    Jash 19:5 And if he was longer than the bed they would draw together the two sides of the bed at each end, until the man had reached the gates of death.

    Jash 19:6 And if he continued to cry out to them, they would answer him, saying, Thus shall it be done to a man that cometh into our land.

    Jash 19:7 And when men heard all these things that the people of the cities of Sodom did, they refrained from coming there.

    Jash 19:8 And when a poor man came to their land they would give him silver and gold, and cause a proclamation in the whole city not to give him a morsel of bread to eat, and if the stranger should remain there some days, and die from hunger, not having been able to obtain a morsel of bread, then at his death all the people of the city would come and take their silver and gold which they had given to him.

    Jash 19:9 And those that could recognize the silver or gold which they had given him took it back, and at his death they also stripped him of his garments, and they would fight about them, and he that prevailed over his neighbor took them.

    Jash 19:10 They would after that carry him and bury him under some of the shrubs in the deserts; so they did all the days to any one that came to them and died in their land.

    Jash 19:11 And in the course of time Sarah sent Eliezer to Sodom, to see Lot and inquire after his welfare.

    Jash 19:12 And Eliezer went to Sodom, and he met a man of Sodom fighting with a stranger, and the man of Sodom stripped the poor man of all his clothes and went away.

    Jash 19:13 And this poor man cried to Eliezer and supplicated his favor on account of what the man of Sodom had done to him.

    Jash 19:14 And he said to him, Why dost thou act thus to the poor man who came to thy land?

    Jash 19:15 And the man of Sodom answered Eliezer, saying, Is this man thy brother, or have the people of Sodom made thee a judge this day, that thou speakest about this man?

    Jash 19:16 And Eliezer strove with the man of Sodom on account of the poor man, and when Eliezer approached to recover the poor man’s clothes from the man of Sodom, he hastened and with a stone smote Eliezer in the forehead.

    Jash 19:17 And the blood flowed copiously from Eliezer’s forehead, and when the man saw the blood he caught hold of Eliezer, saying, Give me my hire for having rid thee of this bad blood that was in thy forehead, for such is the custom and the law in our land.

    Jash 19:18 And Eliezer said to him, Thou hast wounded me and requirest me to pay thee thy hire; and Eliezer would not hearken to the words of the man of Sodom.

    Jash 19:19 And the man laid hold of Eliezer and brought him to Shakra the judge of Sodom for judgment.

    Jash 19:20 And the man spoke to the judge, saying, I beseech thee my lord, thus has this man done, for I smote him with a stone that the blood flowed from his forehead, and he is unwilling to give me my hire.

    Jash 19:21 And the judge said to Eliezer, This man speaketh truth to thee, give him his hire, for this is the custom in our land; and Eliezer heard the words of the judge, and he lifted up a stone and smote the judge, and the stone struck on his forehead, and the blood flowed copiously from the forehead of the judge, and Eliezer said, If this then is the custom in your land give thou unto this man what I should have given him, for this has been thy decision, thou didst decree it.

    Jash 19:22 And Eliezer left the man of Sodom with the judge, and he went away.

    Jash 19:23 And when the kings of Elam had made war with the kings of Sodom, the kings of Elam captured all the property of Sodom, and they took Lot captive, with his property, and when it was told to Abraham he went and made war with the kings of Elam, and he recovered from their hands all the property of Lot as well as the property of Sodom.

    Jash 19:24 At that time the wife of Lot bare him a daughter, and he called her name Paltith, saying, Because God had delivered him and his whole household from the kings of Elam; and Paltith daughter of Lot grew up, and one of the men of Sodom took her for a wife.

    Jash 19:25 And a poor man came into the city to seek a maintenance, and he remained in the city some days, and all the people of Sodom caused a proclamation of their custom not to give this man a morsel of bread to eat, until he dropped dead upon the earth, and they did so.

    Jash 19:26 And Paltith the daughter of Lot saw this man lying in the streets starved with hunger, and no one would give him any thing to keep him alive, and he was just upon the point of death.

    Jash 19:27 And her soul was filled with pity on account of the man, and she fed him secretly with bread for many days, and the soul of this man was revived.

    Jash 19:28 For when she went forth to fetch water she would put the bread in the water pitcher, and when she came to the place where the poor man was, she took the bread from the pitcher and gave it him to eat; so she did many days.

    Jash 19:29 And all the people of Sodom and Gomorrah wondered how this man could bear starvation for so many days.

    Jash 19:30 And they said to each other, This can only be that he eats and drinks, for no man can bear starvation for so many days or live as this man has, without even his countenance changing; and three men concealed themselves in a place where the poor man was stationed, to know who it was that brought him bread to eat.

    Jash 19:31 And Paltith daughter of Lot went forth that day to fetch water, and she put bread into her pitcher of water, and she went to draw water by the poor man’s place, and she took out the bread from the pitcher and gave it to the poor man and he ate it.

    Jash 19:32 And the three men saw what Paltith did to the poor man, and they said to her, It is thou then who hast supported him, and therefore has he not starved, nor changed in appearance nor died like the rest.

    Jash 19:33 And the three men went out of the place in which they were concealed, and they seized Paltith and the bread which was in the poor man’s hand.

    Jash 19:34 And they took Paltith and brought her before their judges, and they said to them, Thus did she do, and it is she who supplied the poor man with bread, therefore did he not die all this time; now therefore declare to us the punishment due to this woman for having transgressed our law.

    Jash 19:35 And the people of Sodom and Gomorrah assembled and kindled a fire in the street of the city, and they took the woman and cast her into the fire and she was burned to ashes.

    Jash 19:36 And in the city of Admah there was a woman to whom they did the like.

    Jash 19:37 For a traveler came into the city of Admah to abide there all night, with the intention of going home in the morning, and he sat opposite the door of the house of the young woman’s father, to remain there, as the sun had set when be had reached that place; and the young woman saw him sitting by the door of the house.

    Jash 19:38 And he asked her for a drink of water and she said to him, Who art thou? and he said to her, I was this day going on the road, and reached here when the sun set, so I will abide here all night, and in the morning I will arise early and continue my journey.

    Jash 19:39 And the young woman went into the house and fetched the man bread and water to eat and drink.

    Jash 19:40 And this affair became known to the people of Admah, and they assembled and brought the young woman before the judges, that they should judge her for this act.

    Jash 19:41 And the judge said, The judgment of death must pass upon this woman because she transgressed our law, and this therefore is the decision concerning her.

    Jash 19:42 And the people of those cities assembled and brought out the young woman, and anointed her with honey from head to foot, as the judge had decreed, and they placed her before a swarm of bees which were then in their hives, and the bees flew upon her and stung her that her whole body was swelled.

    Jash 19:43 And the young woman cried out on account of the bees, but no one took notice of her or pitied her, and her cries ascended to heaven.

    Jash 19:44 And the Lord was provoked at this and at all the works of the cities of Sodom, for they had abundance of food, and had tranquility amongst them, and still would not sustain the poor and the needy, and in those days their evil doings and sins became great before the Lord.

    Jash 19:45 And the Lord sent for two of the angels that had come to Abraham’s house, to destroy Sodom and its cities.

    1. There’s a lot of great “deleted scene” type information and accounts in the book of Jasher. I also found the events and laws of Sodom (and the other cities of the plain) both horrifying and facinating. Lot’s own daughter, murdered for feeding a starving man, is particularly tragic. I do love the story of Abraham’s right-hand man going to check out what’s happening in Sodom, and he punches that judge.

      1. Oops! Okay, I admit I only sort of skimmed the excerpt you posted and I missed that the Eliezer bit is in there, and he hits the judge with a rock. That’s even better than I remembered. Clearly, I need to reread Jasher. 😁

  3. Thank you for mentioning the Super Bowl, MD. Not enough people are aware of the dark underbelly of our society’s bread and circuses.

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