And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes ,.... By raining brimstone and fire upon them from heaven, Genesis 19:24 which soon reduced them to ashes, with Admah and Zeboiim, Deuteronomy 29:25 , cities delightfully situated, which were as the garden of God, and the land of Egypt, together with the inhabitants of them; and after they had received a signal mercy, in being rescued by Abraham from the kings who had carried them captive; and though Abraham, the friend of God, interceded for them, and righteous Lot dwelt among them. The first of these cities is in the Hebrew language called Sedom; Philo the Jew
"a good way off of Jerusalem (he says
and so the author of the book of Wisdom 10:7 speaking of the five cities, on which fire fell, says,
"of whose wickedness, even to this day, the waste land that smoketh is a testimony; and plants bearing fruit, that never come to ripeness.'
Philo the Jew
"there are showed to this day in Syria monuments of this unspeakable destruction that happened; as ruins, ashes, sulphur, smoke, and a weak flame, breaking forth as of a fire burning:'
condemned them with an overthrow ; by this sad "catastrophe" God condemned the sins of those men of Sodom and Gomorrah, and condemned their persons to everlasting damnation; of which their temporal punishment was an emblem and figure; see Judges 1:7 , the word "overthrow" is generally used when this destruction is spoken of, Deuteronomy 29:23 and therefore retained by the apostle here:
making them ensamples unto those who after should live ungodly ; in the commission of any sins, and be open, bold, and impudent in them, and declare them as they did; and especially that should live in the commission of the same sins, those unnatural lusts and uncleannesses, which to this day go by the name of "sodomy", and "sodomitical" practices; now the punishment of the inhabitants of these cities was an ensample to such wicked conduct, showing what they must expect, and was a representation of those everlasting burnings, which such sinners, as a righteous retaliation for their burning lusts, shall be cast into. The Jews say
"the men of Sodom have no part in the world to come, as is said Genesis 13:13 "but the men of Sodom were wicked, and sinners before the Lord exceedingly"; wicked in this world, and sinners in the world to come;'
See Gill on 1:7 .