The Story of Prophet Lut (PBUH)- The Corrupt City

Prophet Lut (“Prophet Lot”) was born and raised by his uncle Prophet Ibrahim, may peace be upon him. Prophet Lut loved, respected and believed in Ibrahim’s message even when everyone ridiculed him. Ibrahim, together with Lut, often travelled far, across land and sea, trying to invite and spread man to the fold of Islam.

During Ibrahim’s and Lut’s migration to Palestine, they received the divine decree of Allah that Lut had been chosen as a Prophet and Messenger for the people of Sodom. Allah instructed the new Prophet to travel to the city of Sodom, located on the border of Jordan and Palestine, and summon the transgressors back to the worship of Allah.

Sodom was a thriving city that was visited by many travellers, merchants and businessmen for trade. However, Sodom was also the most corrupt city with the highest criminal activity during that time. Travellers passing Sodom were often waylaid and robbed of their belongings, and sometimes were mercilessly murdered. But, the most notorious act of evil that was committed by this corrupt nation was homosexuality.

Homosexuality was introduced into the world by the people of Lut—none in the history of mankind had ever experienced or practiced homosexuality before Sodom. This shameful practice was the norm amongst this nation, and the entire population engaged in it. They were immensely proud of their conduct, spoke openly about it, and engaged in these immoral behaviors out in the open.

Homosexuality was introduced into the world by the people of Lut—none in the history of mankind had ever experienced or practiced homosexuality before Sodom. This shameful practice was the norm amongst this nation, and the entire population engaged in it. They were immensely proud of their conduct, spoke openly about it, and engaged in these immoral behaviors out in the open.

 

Pleased with the Prophethood and his new mission, Prophet Lut soon settled in Sodom and began to devise ways to bring his people in to the fold of Islam. He was well-aware that his nation was the most corrupt nation of that time; but he held firm faith and hoped and prayed that they would soon see the error of their ways and enter into the path of Allah.  

Soon Prophet Lut approached the men of the city and reminded them of their Lord: “Will you not fear Allah and obey Him? Verily! I am a trustworthy Messenger to you. So fear Allah, keep your duty to Him, and obey me.” Puzzled, the men of the city began discussing amongst themselves: “This man has entered our city, and is telling us to cease what we are doing? Clearly, he is gaining something out of this!” Prophet Lut replied: “No reward do I ask of you for it. My reward is only from the Lord of the Worlds.”

Prophet Lut then broached the matter of homosexuality and informed them that it was indeed an immoral practice. He said: “Do you approach males among the worlds, and leave those whom your Lord has created for you as your wives? Nay, you are a people of transgressing!

Prophet Lut then informed his people that he would never agree to be a part of this such a practice, and warned them of a severe punishment from Allah. He said: “I am indeed, of those who disapprove with severe anger and fury your action (of sodomy).” The men and women of Sodom became very angry at Lut’s speech; they began to discuss amongst each other, planning to drive Lut away from their city. They then warned Prophet Lut: “If you cease not, O Lut! Verily, you will be one of those who are driven out!

Prophet Lut became distressed. After years and years of inviting people to Islam, not one person in Sodom had entered the fold of Islam. The only Muslim household in Sodom was Lut’s house and not all its occupants were Muslims—Lut and his daughters were steadfast in their religion, but his wife continued to be among the non-believers. So Prophet Lut raised his hands to the heavens and prayed: “My Lord, support me against the corrupting people. My Lord, save me and my family from what they do.”

Meanwhile, Allah sent three angels, including Angel Jibreel, disguised as men to Prophet Ibrahim’s house as guests. Ibrahim, who failed to recognise the angels, prepared a grand feast for his guests. But his guests refused the meals offered to them. Prophet Ibrahim became fearful; he asked: “Who are you?” The angels replied: “Do not be afraid! We are the angels of Allah. We have been sent to the people of Lut and we have been sent to give you glad tidings of a son possessing much knowledge and wisdom.” Prophet Ibrahim knew that Allah’s punishment for the people of Sodom was near. He immediately feared for his nephew, Lut; he said to the angels: “Indeed, within it is Lut.” The Angels replied: “We are more knowing of who is within it.” They reassured Ibrahim that Lut will be saved.

The angels then proceeded towards Sodom disguised as handsome young men. The daughter of Lut, a believer, witnessed the handsome men entering the city and frantically ran to her father and informed him of the three men. Prophet Lut approached the men and welcomed them to city of Sodom. He knew too well of the fate that would befall the young men at the hands of the men of Sodom; so he intended to convince the men to leave the city for their own safety. But Prophet Lut was too embarrassed to ask the guests to leave, so he guided the guests to his home ensuring that none saw the three handsome men.

Lut’s wife, a non-believer, saw the men as they entered her house, together with her husband, Lut. She hurried to the men of the city and informed them that Lut had three attractive, young men in his house. The men rejoiced at the news and slowly gathered outside the house of Lut and began pounding on his door. Lut shouted: “Do not disgrace me concerning my guests. Is there not among you a man of reason?” Growing restless, the men shouted back: “Have we not forbidden you from [hosting] people?”

The whole nation of Sodom had now gathered at Lut’s doorstep. They grew impatient by the minute and began breaking down his door. Feeling agitated, Lut called out to his people: “These [the girls of the nation] are my daughters [to marry lawfully] if you must act so.” The men responded: “You have already known that we have no interest in your daughters; and indeed, you know what we want.” Prophet Lut became helpless against the corrupt people. “If only I had against you some power or could take refuge in a strong power”, he thought. The three men then spoke up: “O Lut, indeed we are angels of your Lord; [therefore] they will never reach you.”

Angel Jibreel then stepped out of Lut’s house and struck the men causing all men to lose their eyesight. Shocked and enraged, the men shouted: “What’s this magic that just hit us? Where did this come from? O Lut! You are the one behind this. You will see what we will do to you tomorrow.” The blind men then returned to their homes plotting to destroy Lut the following day.

Allah commanded Lut: “Set out with your family during a portion of the night and let not any among you look back, except your wife. Indeed she will be struck by that which strikes them. Indeed, their appointment is [for] the morning. Is not the morning near?” As instructed, Prophet Lut, together with his daughters, left Sodom during the night.

As the morning dawned, a loud, piercing cry ensued through the city that shook the occupants with great pain and fear. Jibreel then grabbed the nation from the edge of his wing, raised them high up, twisted the land, and crashed it to the ground. Allah then caused the skies to rain down stones of hard clay—each stone inscribed with the name of a transgressor for whom it was intended for, ending the vain lives of the occupants of Sodom.

Prophet Lut, who left Sodom with his daughters, returned to his uncle, Prophet Ibrahim. Together with Ibrahim, Lut continued to spread the message of Allah till his death.

Today, the Dead Sea lies at the site of the corrupt city of Sodom, and remains as a powerful reminder of Allah’s wrath against the people of Prophet Lut. Allah the Exalted says in the Holy Quran: “Surely! In this are signs for those who see. And verily! They (the cities) are right on the highroad (from Mecca to Syria, i.e. the place where the Dead Sea is now). Surely! Therein is indeed a sign for the believers.

Mentions Hebrew Bible and New Testament

Moses in the Hebrew Bible referred to the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah in Deuteronomy 29:22–23:

“Your children who follow you in later generations and foreigners who come from distant lands will see the calamities that have fallen on the land and the diseases with which the lord has afflicted it. The whole land will be a burning waste of salt and sulfur—nothing planted, nothing sprouting, no vegetation growing on it. It will be like the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, Admah and Zeboyim, which the Lord overthrew in fierce anger.”

In the Bible New Testament, Luke 17:28–30, Jesus compares his second-coming to the judgment of Sodom and Gomorrah:

Likewise as it was in the days of Lot—they ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built, but on the day when Lot went out from Sodom fire and sulphur rained from heaven and destroyed them all—so will it be on the day when the Son of man is revealed.

Quran Verses That Mention The Story Of Prophet Lut

There are a total of 17 ayats that mention the Prophet Lut (pbuh) in the Qur’an.

Surah Anam (6:86)
Surah Araf (7:80)

And [We had sent] Lot when he said to his people, “Do you commit such immorality as no one has preceded you with from among the worlds? Indeed, you approach men with desire, instead of women. Rather, you are a transgressing people.” But the answer of his people was only that they said, “Evict them from your city! Indeed, they are men who keep themselves pure.” (Ayat 80-82)

Surah Hud (11:70, 74, 77, 89)

But when he saw their hands not reaching for it, he distrusted them and felt from them apprehension. They said, “Fear not. We have been sent to the people of Lot.” (Ayat 70)

And when the fright had left Abraham and the good tidings had reached him, he began to argue with Us concerning the people of Lot. (Ayat 74)

And when Our messengers, [the angels], came to Lot, he was anguished for them and felt for them great discomfort and said, “This is a trying day.” (Ayat 77) 

And O my people, let not [your] dissension from me cause you to be struck by that similar to what struck the people of Noah or the people of Hud or the people of Salih. And the people of Lot are not from you far away. (Ayat 89)

Surah Hijr (15:59)

[Abraham] said, “Then what is your business [here], O messengers? They said, “Indeed, we have been sent to a people of criminals, Except the family of Lot; indeed, we will save them all Except his wife.” Allah decreed that she is of those who remain behind. (Ayat 57-60)

Surah Anbiya (21:71, 74)

And to Lot We gave judgement and knowledge, and We saved him from the city that was committing wicked deeds. Indeed, they were a people of evil, defiantly disobedient. (Ayat 74) 

Surah Hajj (22:43)
Surah Ankabut (29:28, 32)

And [mention] Lot, when he said to his people, “Indeed, you commit such immorality as no one has preceded you with from among the worlds. Indeed, you approach men and obstruct the road and commit in your meetings [every] evil.” And the answer of his people was not but they said, “Bring us the punishment of Allah, if you should be of the truthful.” He said, “My Lord, support me against the corrupting people.” And when Our messengers came to Abraham with the good tidings, they said, “Indeed, we will destroy the people of that Lot’s city. Indeed, its people have been wrongdoers.” [Abraham] said, “Indeed, within it is Lot.” They said, “We are more knowing of who is within it. We will surely save him and his family, except his wife. She is to be of those who remain behind.” (Ayat 28-32) 
Surah Saffat (37:153)
Surah Sad (38:13)
Surah Qaf (50:13)
Surah Qamar (54:33)

The people of Lot denied the warning. Indeed, We sent upon them a storm of stones, except the family of Lot – We saved them before dawn As favor from us. Thus do We reward he who is grateful. And he had already warned them of Our assault, but they disputed the warning. And they had demanded from him his guests, but We obliterated their eyes, [saying], “Taste My punishment and warning.” And there came upon them by morning an abiding punishment. (Ayat 33-38)

Tahrim (66:10)

Allah presents an example of those who disbelieved: the wife of Noah and the wife of Lot. They were under two of Our righteous servants but betrayed them, so those prophets did not avail them from Allah at all, and it was said, “Enter the Fire with those who enter.” (Ayat 10)