All the Sins of Sodom

Where does the story of Sodom and Gomorrah leave us? We see that inhospitality, violence, and abuse toward strangers was their primary sin—not homosexuality.

But what about the rest of the Scriptures that mention the cities of the Plain?

In all of the biblical passages, we find the following sins and crimes delineated:

Bible Book Sins akin to Sodom’s
Genesis 13:13; 19 Wickedness and sin
Inhospitality
Forcefulness
Prejudice against outsiders
Disrespect
Cruelty
Violence and physical/sexual abusiveness
Intent to degrade, debase, dominate and humiliate
Deuteronomy 29:17-28; 32:32-35 Detestable practices
Idolatry
Apostasy
Spiritual adultery
Abandoning God
Scoffing the Rock of their salvation
Following after strange gods
Sacrificing to demons
Isaiah 1:4, 7-11, 15-17; 3:8-9; 13:19-20 Unfaithfulness
Hypocrisy
Iniquity
Violence
Bloodshed
Evildoing
Oppressing the helpless
Haughtiness
Pride in sinfulness
Jeremiah 23:14-15; 49:16-18; 50:39-40 Adultery
Walking in lies
Strengthening the hands of evildoers
Promoting ungodliness
Inspiring terror
Pride
Idolatry
Sinning against the Lord
Challenging the Lord
Defying the Lord
Arrogance
Lamentations 3:34-36; 4:6 Transgressions
Grievous sin
Uncleanness
Rebelliousness
Iniquity
Becoming cruel
Injustice that exploits human rights
Ezekiel 16:46-51 Abominations
Whorings with heathen nations
Idolatry
Child sacrifice
Wickedness
Lewd behavior
Spiritual adultery
Lust
Shedding blood
Pride
Greed
Gluttony
No concern for the poor and needy
Amos 4:11 Ruthless oppression and enslavement of the poor
Fathers and sons sexually using the same girl
Interfering with the Nazirites and prophets
Oppression
Wrongdoing, looting, hoarding plunder
Idle luxury
Oppressing the poor and crushing the needy
Drunkenness
Making sacrifices without turning from sin and then boasting about it
Zephaniah 2:8-11 Idolatry
Complacency
Sinning against the Lord
Pride
Scoffing
Boasting
Matthew 10:14-15; 11:20-24 Hardheartedness
Unrepentance
Luke 10:5-12; 17:28-33 Inhospitality
Romans 9:29 Unbelief
2 Peter 2:4-9 NIV Ungodliness
Depravity
Lawlessness
Jude 5-7 NASB Gross immorality
Going after “strange flesh” (angelic)—violating God’s created order
Revelation 11:7-8 Rejecting God’s messengers
3 Maccabees 2:2-5 CEB Violence
Arrogance
Wicked deeds
2 Esdras 2:8-9 CEB; 5:7 CEB; 7:106 CEB Ignoring the Lord and his advice
Disobedience
Idolatry
Sexual immorality
Sirach 16:8 CEB Disobedience
Rebellion
Pride
Arrogance
Wisdom 19:13-17 CEB Failing to welcome sojourning strangers
Making guests and benefactors slaves
Treating people unlike themselves as enemies
Forcing strangers to do hard labor

The chief sins are inhospitality, idolatry, hatred of strangers, and abuses against human rights. Sexual sins are in the minority, most are metaphorical of spiritual adultery, and homosexuality is not mentioned. Instead, pride and arrogance are primary.

Next time, we’ll make some conclusions about the teaching of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.

More information:

The Sin of Sodom coverTo read the full story, get my book, The Sin of Sodom: What the Bible Really Says About Why God Destroyed the Cities of the Plain, for Kindle and in trade paperback.

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