Sodom and Gomorrah

The well known story of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah is found in Genesis chapter nineteen. Lot, the nephew of Abraham, was living there with his wife and two daughters. Two angels from the Lord came to Lot’s house to escort him out of town. Very early the next morning the angels led Lot and his family out of Sodom before it was destroyed.

When Lot moved to the Plain of Jordan, in the area of Sodom, it was described as being “well watered … even as the Garden of God.” (Genesis 13:10) However, four-hundred years later when Moses was recording the event, he noted that the cities of the plain were near the desolate area that we know as the Dead Sea. What an astonishing difference!

The Lord declared that He would destroy Sodom, Gomorrah and all the cities of the plain (five cities) with fire and brimstone (sulfur). That area would be nothing but sulfur and salt, and nothing would bear fruit nor would anything grow there. (Deuteronomy 29:23) And that describes it from the time of Abraham until now.

Today, in the region of the Dead Sea there are what appear to be natural formations, but they are a lighter color than the geology of the surrounding mountains and cliffs. They are different because the “formations” are composed of a different material than the nearby geology. Most buildings in Israel, even today, are built of limestone blocks quarried locally. Limestone is calcium carbonate. The different material, calcium sulfate, found in the Dead Sea region, is the result of the combination through extreme heat (about 6000 degrees Fahrenheit) of sulfur (brimstone) and the native limestone of Israel.

There are groups of these light-colored formations clustered around the Dead Sea. In these clusters are square formations with right-angle corners, which do not occur in nature, and are largely composed of ash with layers of gypsum (calcium sulfate) and charcoal. Small holes scattered in a rain-like pattern contain grape-sized pellets of sulfur embedded in these layers! The sulfur has been tested and is reported to be much purer that other naturally occurring sulfur.

It appears that the raining down of great fire and sulfur caused the buildings of the cities to simply roast where they stood. The wood-beam roofs burned and collapsed. The limestone walls of the houses were completely burned up, but remained in place. This type of inferno is reminiscent of the Lord burning the offering of Elijah on Mount Carmel including the stones of the altar Elijah had built! (First Kings 18:38) The furnace-like heat of the conflagration caused swirling patterns that can be seen today on the walls of the buildings/formations! Even more unbelievable, you can see square window openings on the sides of the buildings. Again, this does not occur in nature.

Photo from Ark Discovery International

Of course this, clusters of ashen formations which are apparently the cities of the Plain of Jordan in the lifeless Dead Sea region, is confirmation of the veracity of the Lord Jehovah’s Word. By definition, every word spoken by the Lord is Truth. (Numbers 23:19)

It is also a 4,000 year old example of the wrath of God. We make the mistake of assuming that things have always been as they currently are, and that this will continue. The Lord is patient, but His anger can be displayed according to His will. I think the signs we see in the world, unusual weather, volcanic activity, earthquakes, pestilence, insanity, are showing exactly that.

As a Christian, I am so grateful and thankful for the Lord’s mercy and patience toward me. Praise His name for sending the Lord Jesus to this world that we might obtain mercy and salvation.

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