Seventh Sunday after Pentecost

 Sermon Text: Genesis 18:20-32

 Other Readings: 1 Timothy 2:1-7 and Luke 11:1-13


  1. Righteousness is a key theme of this account. How should we define the righteousness which God desires? Asked another way, what does a righteous person look like and/or do?
  2. Jesus wouldn’t teach the Lord’s Prayer to his disciples until about 2,000 years after Abraham. But we see a very God-pleasing prayer here. What parts of the Lord’s Prayer are illustrated by Abraham in his prayer? (Confer our Gospel Reading Luke 11:1-12.)
  3. Why do you think that Abraham finally stopped at the number ten? How did God still show mercy despite ten righteous people not found?
  4. Martin Luther wrote, “It is necessary for God to reveal his wrath against sin, lest the godly be offended and themselves also begin to turn away. … And this is the reason why God commands that this account be committed to Abraham’s descendants. God wants to be feared, but the smug he detests and hates.” What elements of this painting of Sodom’s destruction (Genesis 19) instill in you a respect for God’s justice?
  5. Write or say a prayer for someone, asking God to show them mercy and give his blessing. It could be a politician (cf. our Second Reading from 1 Timothy chapter 2), a coworker who doesn’t know Christ, a family member stuck in a sinful culture, etc. Use keys words from this Sunday’s readings to help craft your prayer.


  1. Our Lutheran confessions (writings from the 16th centuries which clarify our Lutheran beliefs and teachings), states, “The righteousness of faith is the forgiveness of sins, reconciliation with God, and our adoption as God’s children only on account of the obedience of Christ, which through faith alone, out of pure grace, is imputed for righteousness to all true believers, and on account of it they are absolved from all their unrighteousness” (The Formula of Concord, Solid Declaration).
  2. Abraham is concerned that God might preserve the holiness and blamelessness attached to his name (First Petition). Abraham asks for forgiveness or mercy, even though the region had many sins (Fifth Petition). Abraham appeals to God’s fatherly mercy and compassion (The Address).
  3. Noah, whom Luther thinks died only about forty years before this account, was preserved on the ark with himself and seven others. Perhaps Abraham thought that if God saved eight in the ark, his nephew’s wife, daughters, and future sons-in-law put them well on the way to finding ten total righteous people. God still showed mercy by sparing Lot and his daughters.
  4. Answers will vary based on personal perspective.
  5. God answer your prayers for the sake of Jesus Christ, our Savior who ransomed us and mediates for us!