What Jesus Wants You To Remember

Bible Book: Luke  17 : 32
Subject: Remembrance; Witness; Influence; Lot's Wife; Doubt; Disobedience

Luke 17:32

The word remember creates emotions in everyone, for it brings out memories of different kinds. It can also be a word involving responsibility. For example, parents tell children to remember to buckle the seat belt in the car, or to remember to complete homework for school. When the word remember is used in this way it usually creates aggravation and frustration in kids. When parents use the word remember in this way it is out of a desire to help or protect their children.

However when the word remember is used, it is to help bring forth something to the forefront of the mind. A reminder is needed because it is so easy for us to forget things, even very important issues in life.

In our passage today we note that Jesus told the Pharisees to “remember Lot’s wife.” The divine reminder is for us all and it has a paramount purpose. You see, the words of Jesus came about because He was asked a question. The Pharisees knew Jesus was on His way to Jerusalem and they sensed that something important was about to happen. So, they asked Jesus if He was going to restore the Kingdom of God. All Jews, including the disciples, wanted the Romans overthrown and the great Kingdom of Israel restored. They knew the history of deliverance that God had provided when the Hebrew people had been slaves in Egypt. God had provided an escape through the blood of a lamb, and thus the Jews had celebrated Passover since that miraculous escape. As Jesus neared Jerusalem the celebration of Passover was near, and the Jewish leaders wondered if this might be the time God would deliver them from the Romans.

Sadly we have to acknowledge that just about everybody likes the idea of being delivered by God from bad circumstances. Many people who hardly give God a thought hope now for God to deliver them from the terrible coronavirus pandemic we are facing. We can say that lots of people want to go to heaven, to be delivered from death, but very few have the slightest interest in living for Him in the here and now.

 At this point Jesus answered their question, but it had nothing to do with time, but rather it had to do with two testimonies from the past: from the time of Noah and the time of Lot. Both of the Old Testament men that Jesus mentioned were preachers of repentance and righteousness in the wicked world in which they loved.  Both men had families that looked to them for guidance and support in those terrible times, and both families were saved from the judgment of God. Well, both families were saved with the exception of Lot’s wife, for we read in the Old Testament she was turned into a pillar of salt. That happened to her because she violated God’s instructions to her and her family. She was warned by angels not to not to look back at the city of Sodom as she and her family were being led to safety before God’s judgment fell on the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. She rebelled and looked back and was immediately turned into a pillar of salt.

Read Genesis 19 and it will explain the story in detail. The question is, what made her look back? To be honest, I don’t know why she did, but she did, and she paid the price. Let us look at her life and see what we can learn from this woman that Jesus did not want us to forget!

I.  She Was A Wife

Right away we need to note that she was part of a family. It is a great blessing g to have a family. Yes, family relationships can be difficult, but it is far worse to have no one to call your call your family.

Part of the problem of being in a family is that it requires responsibility. Whatever place you find yourself In your family, it calls upon you to obey certain protocols.

Lot’s wife Was in a family that had faith in the living God. Thus, she had a responsibility to pray for her husband, her children and for God to help her to be the wife and mother that He desired her to be. She was to support and encourage her husband and her two daughters.

Since she had two daughters, she had a great responsibility to teach them by example and word how to live godly lives. It was a blessing to have two girls, but with it came serious responsibilities.

In essence she was to be faithful to God, faithful to her husband and to live faithfully before her girls. We learn from this story that something was terribly wrong with her life and the way she had failed her daughters. Let me explain .

When Lot’s wife was turned to a pillar of salt it was because of her direct rebellion regarding God’s instructions. Her husband, Lot, and her daughters fled on out of the city of Sodom and ended up in the cave of a mountain. Here we learn a horrifying story about these two daughters. The girls felt the destruction of the cit6 was likely the end of the world as they knew it. They feared that their family would end for they would never have children. Instead of seeking God, they got their father drunk with wine – just drunk enough to forget what was happening but sober enough to seed both of the with a child. In other words, they used their father to get pregnant. Now this raises a question. Where did they learn that kind of behavior. We know their mother was disobedient to God, is it possible that she taught her daughters how to drink and practice evil ways? It is not just possible but likely.

The girls were successful and they bore two sons from their father : Moab and Ammon. We read this Genesis 19:30-38. If the mother had not been disobedient it is highly likely that this would have never happened. The absence of humility in Lot when he chose to take the city and left the cheaper, poorer land to his uncle Abraham was the first mistake. Them, the disobedience of Lot’s wife when she looked back to the city was the ultimate failure.  In the end, it all led to disaster! To top it all off, the two sons born to the daughters grew up to hate Israel. The girls must have taught them to do so. What a sad family story, with much of the family sadness resting in Lot’s wife. If only she had been faithful to God in assisting her husband and training her daughters, what a difference it would have made. If only she had obeyed God’s message and not looked back, she would have been there to give godly directions to her girls. But she wasn’t there.

So, Jesus said to remember Lot’s wife and we begin with that thought.  Now, let’s remember …

II. She Had A Warning

Lot’s wife had a warning, for Lot was a preacher of righteousness. In other words, Lot’s wife heard the truth from God through her preacher husband. Lot told the people that God was going to judge them.

Listen, God never gives a judgment without warning. We can never say to God, “Lord, I didn’t know.” God always wants before He judges. The problem is people don’t believe that God will do what He says He will do. The people of the twin cities did not listen to the preacher – they did not listen to God’s Word. Sadly, people today are doing the same thing.

God sent angels to rescue Lot and his family. They were delivered out of the city by the  angels, but they were warned not to look back at the city or they would face judgment. Lot’s wife was duly warned and her entire family was warned, but she chose to be disobedient and she paid a terrible price for it.

This raises a question: How much are you willing to pay in order to be disobedient to a warning from God? Disobedience always comes at a price. People think there is a price to be paid for obedience, but actually Jesus paid the price for our sins. However, there is a great price to be paid for rejecting God’s offer of escape.

Lastly, regarding Lot’s wife, we observe that …

III. She Had A Witness

Jesus said that we are to remember Lot’s wife. In other words, He is telling us that she left a witness behind. Yes, and she had a witness where she lived in sodom.

What was the witness of Lot’s wife in Sodom? Her neighbors knew who she was, and they spoke to her about the words her husband was saying to them about the upcoming judgment. You know they asked her what her husband meant when he preached the coming judgment of God. Just think of the difference her witness could have made. Let me explain.

You will remember that Abraham prayed for God to spare Sodom. In the end, God agreed that He would spare the city if 10 righteousness people could be found there. Thus, since Lot was righteous, that counts as one. If Lot’s wife and her two daughters had been righteous, along with Lot, that would have been 4. The two girls had fiancés, so I’d they had been righteous, that would have totaled 6. Now, think of this. If Lot’s wife could have simply convinced 4 of her friends to repent and trust God, the entire city would have been spared. Remember her, for her witness was that she was a terrible witness! An entire city was destroyed for lack of effective witnessing.

Lot’s wife, like so many of us, was unaware that she was living on a mission field. It is interesting how we think of missionaries. We see them as those who go far away to witness, and missionaries do exactly that. What we don’t think about is that God has called all of us to be missionaries right where we are.

Are you a missionary right where we are. Would your prayers spare our city from judgment? Are you and I witnesses to the truth that a judgment day is coming and that God has provided a hand to lead us to safety. That hand is the nail-scarred hand of Jesus – but does anyone learn that from us?


Lot’s wife looked back and her disobedience led to her turning into a pillar off salt.  Now, let me ask you a question. Why did Lot’s wife disobey the message of mercy that God had given? Why did she look back at Sodom? I’ll tell you why – that is where her heart was.

Where is your heart? It is revealed by your obedience. It is revealed by your witness. 

God means what He says.

God will do what He says.

God extends mercy to the most rebellious.

But, even God’s mercy has a limit, for one day the hour of opportunity will pass. Don’t get caught looking back. The songwriter penned, “I left my heart in San Francisco.” Dear friend, don’t be caught leaving your heart anywhere in this world. Keep your heart fixed on Christ.

And one last thought – even Jesus used your name as an example, how would He use it? Would it be for faith or for failure.