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Bible Dictionaries

People's Dictionary of the Bible

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Lot (lŏt), veil or covering. The son of Haran and nephew of Abraham. Genesis 11:27; Genesis 11:31. His sisters were Milcah the wife of Nahor, and Iscah, by some identified with Sarah. Haran died before the emigration of Terah and his family from Ur of the Chaldees, ver. 28, and Lot was therefore born there. He removed with the rest of his kindred to Haran, and again subsequently with Abraham and Sarai to Canaan. Genesis 12:4-5. With them he took refuge in Egypt from a famine, and with them returned first to the "South," Genesis 13:1, and then to their original settlement between Bethel and Ai. vs. 3, 4. Later, they separated, Lot choosing the fertile plain of the Jordan, near Sodom. Genesis 13:10-14. Lot was captured by the four kings of the East, and rescued by Abram. Genesis 14:1-24. He was still living in Sodom, Genesis 19:1-38, from which he was rescued by angels on the day of its final overthrow. He fled first to Zoar, in which he found a temporary refuge during the destruction of the other cities of the plain. The end of Lot's wife is commonly treated as one of the difficulties of the Bible; but it surely need not be so. The value and the significance of the story to us are contained in the allusion of Christ. Luke 17:32. It is folly to think of identifying the "pillar" with some one of the fleeting forms which the perishable rock of the south end of the Dead Sea is constantly assuming. From the incestuous intercourse between Lot and his two daughters sprang the nations of Moab and Ammon.

Lot. Casting lots or a pebble is an ancient custom of deciding doubtful questions. Proverbs 16:33. Among the Jews lots were used with the expectation that God would so control them as to give a right direction to them, as in the choice of the apostle Matthias, Acts 1:26, and in the cases of Saul and Jonathan, and Jonah and his companions to determine who had offended God. 1 Samuel 14:41-42; Jonah 1:7. In the division of the Promised Land among the tribes of Israel the use of the lot was expressly commanded by God himself, it being understood that the extent of territory should be proportioned to the population of each tribe. Numbers 26:55. So the selection of the scapegoat on the day of atonement was to be determined by lot. Leviticus 16:8. Property was divided in a similar way. Psalms 22:18; Matthew 27:35. The orders of the priests and their daily services were also assigned by lot. 1 Chron. chaps. 24, 25. The manner of casting lots is supposed to have been by stones or marks which were thrown together into the lap or fold of a garment, or into an urn or vase, and the person holding them shook them violently, and they were then drawn. The passage, Proverbs 16:33, is paraphrased thus: "In a lot-vase the lots are shaken in all directions; nevertheless, from the Lord is the whole decision or judgment."

Bibliography Information
Rice, Edwin Wilbur, DD. Entry for 'Lot'. People's Dictionary of the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/​dictionaries/​eng/​rpd/​l/lot.html. 1893.
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