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What the Bible says about Incest
(From Forerunner Commentary)

Genesis 19:14

In Lot's family was a measure of contempt. Lot seemed to his sons-in-law to be joking. It is as if they said, “Who cares for anything you say?” Was Lot's wife different? She looked back. Lot's daughters? They escaped, and then proceeded to involve Lot in one of the vilest sins in the entire Bible, incest. Contempt is not unusual for a lingerer, for they are despised by their families, who cannot deal with the person's inconsistency. They are hot, then cold. They blow this way, then that. They command, “Do this,” but they do something different. Their lives do not live up to the words that they say. Lot was a man whose works burned, but he himself was saved (I Corinthians 3:15).

This is not a way that God wants His children to live. Even though He mercifully intervenes and saves, He wants His children to enjoy the best of the abundant life and to be prepared for His Kingdom.

Most are familiar with Herbert Lockyer's series of "All" books: All the Prayers of the Bible, All the Parables of the Bible, All the Promises of the Bible, All the Women of the Bible, etc. In All the Men of the Bible, he says that Lot is the representative man:

Perhaps there is no figure in the Bible who represents so many men of today as Lot of Sodom. Where you will find one Abraham, one Daniel, or one Joshua, you will find a thousand Lots.

Lot had much wealth, but he did not have the abundant life of God because of his choice to coexist with the world, whose constant, degenerate pressure virtually destroyed his true spirituality. Lot was not a sinner in the normal sense, but a spiritually small and lean man.

There is an interesting contrast between Abraham and Lot. Abraham was probably exceedingly wealthier than Lot, but Abraham lived in a tent, while Lot lived in a house. This clearly shows that Abraham lived his life in such a way that everybody understood that Abraham was just a pilgrim. He did not put roots down in this world, while Lot, his nephew, did.

Lot was converted but carnal. He was a man of weak faith. His hopes and dreams were in the world, and his interest was in the things of this world. Lot had the same vision as Abraham, but by choice, he was firmly anchored in the world. All of Lot's goodness was virtually wasted because his spiritual life was going nowhere.

One might say that, because Lot was "saved," there is more than one way to skin a cat. There might be many poor ways of skinning a cat, as well as some good ways, too. But there is only one best way to skin a cat. Why not choose the best way of doing it? That is the lesson of Lot's life. Why let our works that we have built burn up? Instead, why not do things the way God says?

God was not in all of Lot's thoughts (Psalm 10:4) because he was living by sight. Lot might very well be what we might call the quintessential second-generation Christian. He believed, but all of his passion was spent pursuing the amusements of this world. Lot, whose faith was weak at best, was not committed like Abraham was. The whole aim of Abraham's life was to give glory to God, while Lot, though righteous, lived by sight (II Corinthians 5:7). His aim was essentially to grasp at life, to do it now and enjoy it, rather than work to develop his relationship with God.

John W. Ritenbaugh
Faith (Part Four)

Deuteronomy 27:11-13

Plain as day, here is a fifty-fifty division of God's people. The six tribes God selects to stand on Ebal were those who descended from Jacob's concubines, Bilhah and Zilpah, plus the descendants of Reuben and Zebulun, the oldest and youngest sons of Leah, respectively. Together, they received the curses. God probably chose Reuben to stand on the mountain of the curse because of his incestuous relationship with his father's concubine, Bilhah (Genesis 35:22). As a result, Reuben became cursed with the loss of his right of the firstborn (the right of primogeniture), as his father, Jacob, mentions (Genesis 49:4).

The remaining six tribes, situated on Mount Gerizim and representing the blessings that naturally result from obedience, were the tribes descended from Rachel, that is, Joseph and Benjamin, as well as the tribes descended from Leah—save, as mentioned above, those descended from Reuben and Zebulun. (The listing of the tribes on Mount Gerizim appears in their forebears' birth order, while the listing of the tribes on Mount Ebal does not; see Genesis 29-30). It makes sense that the blessings should go to the tribes descended from the actual wives of Jacob, Leah and Rachel.

We see developing, then, the blessing-curse dichotomy, which strictly corresponds to another dichotomy, obedience-disobedience. The blessings and curses are just as much opposites as are their respective causes, obedience and disobedience. They are mutually exclusive. Try as one might, an individual cannot obey and disobey the same rule simultaneously.

Charles Whitaker
Unity and Division: The Blessing and the Curse (Part Three)

Deuteronomy 27:20

This is the first of four curses that pertain to sexual misbehavior. The example here is that of (usually) covert, incestuous relationships (see Leviticus 18:8; 20:11).

Charles Whitaker
Unity and Division: The Blessing and the Curse (Part Four)

2 Samuel 13:1-15

Here we have the story of the lust-driven affair of Amnon, one of David's sons, and Tamar, one of David's daughters, a half-sister of Amnon. Amnon was sick with love for Tamar, but the fruit of the relationship shows it was not love but lust. He greatly desired to take her to bed, so much so that he deceitfully conspired with his cousin Jonadab to arrange matters. He then compounded that sin by lying to his father to be alone with her and raping her when he finally was. The fruit of his shameful deed was further defiled when his feelings for her reversed to a hatred against her that was greater than his former "love." Two years later Amnon was dead at the hand of Absalom, Tamar's full brother.

What piling of sin on sin coveting produced! It destroyed Tamar's virginity and possibly a future marriage. It destroyed the cohesiveness of David's family. It produced burning hatred, and everyone felt great sorrow. All of this blossomed from an uncontrolled desire in the mind of one person. Its effects impacted on David's family for many generations.

John W. Ritenbaugh
The Tenth Commandment (1998)


Find more Bible verses about Incest:
Incest {Nave's}
 




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