Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

Memories and Memorials

Meditation for the week of May 24, 2009

Luke 17:32 Remember Lot’s wife.
Genesis 19:26 But his wife looked back behind him, and she became a pillar of salt.

Memorial Day weekend is a time for remembering.  Our current custom is to honor living and dead veterans of the wars that we have fought as well as honoring all of our loved ones who have died.  Memory links us to the past.  However some of our memories are good and some are not.

We are told to remember Lot’s wife.  She is an example of what not to do.  She looked back to the destruction that was taking place in Sodom and Gomorrah and became a pillar of salt.  She had been told not to look back and when the Lord tells us not to do something,  He tells us that for our good.  Her children were back in that city that was being destroyed, and I am quite sure that when she looked back her heart broke.  Whether she died right there and had the destruction overtake her or whether she was immobilized with fear when she saw what was happening and had the destruction overtake her is not clear.  But one thing is clear, she shouldn’t have looked back.  However, I do sympathize with her.   She loved her children and she didn’t want to see them destroyed with the sinners in Sodom.  Her children had not believed Lot or God when Lot said destruction was coming and they did not leave.   I suspect that they had become comfortable with Sodom and with the sin of that place.  They needed to be saved, but they didn’t want to be saved.  Their unwillingness to listen to the warning cost them their lives, and it cost the life of their mother as well. 

This world is going to be destroyed.   In Noah’s day, the world had become violent and men’s hearts were evil.  They were motivated by Satan and not by good.  We live in a day like that and judgment is coming.  It will not only overtake the sinner who rebels against God after death, but the nations on this earth are going to be judged for their sin as well.  I wonder what it will be like for us to know that we had children who did not believe us and who ended up being destroyed along with a Christ-rejecting world?  Some teach that we won’t be concerned with those things after we die, but I know people in hell have a memory because in Luke 16 the rich man in hell remembered.  I suspect that those of us in heaven will have a memory as well.  Fortunately, we will no longer be bound by earthly ties and earthly attitudes and earthly sin, so I have no doubt that we will be willing to justify God’s judgments even when it involves our children.   They, more than others, will deserve God’s judgment when it comes, if they reject the Lord.  Our children have been raised in a privileged environment where they  have been warned about coming destruction, and where they have been taught the truth.

Those of us who are saved may end up with some bad memories, but we have some good memories as well.  One of them is of a Man who came to this earth to reveal God to us.  Though good and though sinless He died on a Cross.  We can look back over 2000 years and thank God for those who have been saved from eternal destruction because He was willing to suffer.  Every Sunday mornings there are groups of Christians who gather for the sole purpose of  “looking back” and memorializing Him.  It is because of Him that we will be spared the destruction that this unbelieving world is going to experience.  The death of the cross was a terrible thing but we have good memories of the One who was willing to die there in our place. 

Remembering Lot’s wife reminds us of the cost of lingering when God says to run.  It reminds us that not all choices that make sense are good choices.  When Lot separated from Abraham he chose the well-watered plains of Jordan.  Those plains should have made him happy and wealthy but they put him near Sodom.   Ultimately he moved there.  His choice led to the loss of much of his family.

Our memories of the Lord remind us of the cost of our salvation.   Those of us who are saved will only memorialize the Lord by eating from a loaf of bread and drinking from a cup of wine until He comes, but even in eternity we will never forget the wonders of God’s love as demonstrated to us in the sacrifice of His Son.

Bruce Collins

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