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People of Lut

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People of Lut lived in the al-Mu'takifat region in Palestine. They have a negative appearance in the Qur'an, the Torah and historical sources. They committed sins such as male homosexual activities, banditry, and harassment of passengers. The Qur'an introduced them as the first people who committed male homosexual activities.

Their prophet was Lut (a) (Lot). After the people of Lut wanted to abuse the guests of prophet Lut (a), they were punished by God. Before the divine punishment, Prophet Lut (a) and his two daughters exited the al-Mu'takifat region at night as the angels advised them.

Features

People of Lut lived in the al-Mu'takifat region in Palestine. It included the cities of Sodom, Gomorrah, Zoar, and Zeboiim in Palestine.[1] A negative appearance of the people of Lut is mentioned in the Qur'an and historical texts.[2] They committed male homosexual activities, banditry and abusing passengers. Other characteristics attributed to them are clapping and whistling, wearing red clothes, playing with pigeons, and drinking alcoholic drinks.[3]

According to the Qur'an, the people of Lut were the first people who committed male sexual activities.[4]

Prophet

Main article: Lut (a)

Lut (a) was the son of Haran (a) and the prophet who was given the mission to invite the people of al-Mu'takifat to the religion of Abraham (a) and monotheism. He was the nephew of Prophet Abraham (a) and the brother of Sarah.

Punishment

Based on historical sources, the people of Lut were punished by the angels of divine punishment after they did not abandon greater sins including male homosexual activities.[5] Prophet Lut (a) invited his people to worship God and abandon greater sins including male sexual activities. After they persisted on committing sins, he warned them that they would receive divine punishment if they do not repent. After Lut's warning did not cause his people to abandon their heinous actions, he asked God to punish them.[6]

Angels Coming to the House of Lut (a)

By order of God, angel Gabriel and angels Michel and Israfil were ordered to deliver divine punishment upon the people of Lut. The angels went to the Prophet Lut (a) in the form of young men and told him, "we are your guests tonight."[7]

Lut (a) took them to his house. He was worried about abusing his young guests by the people and told them, "do not you know the people of this region have a bad habit? They are the worst of people on the earth."[8] In verse 77 of Qur'an 11, the worries of Lut are mentioned.[9] After a short while, Lut's wife saw the guests and informed the people about the handsome guests of Lut.[10]

When the people of Lut were informed about the presence of the guests in the house of Lut (a), went to his house to act according to their custom of engaging homosexual activities with the guests.[11] When Prophet Lut (a) saw the people, found about their intention to abuse the guests. Lut asked people not to embarrass him with their heinous actions, prohibited them from harming his guests, and asked them to marry his daughters instead.[12] They had previously told him that every male guest who entered that region belonged to them and he should not take them home. So, they admonished Lut (a) for accepting the guests in his house and rejected his offer for marrying his daughters in return for not abusing his guests.[13]

Lut (a) wished if he had a support to stop people's heinous action. He asked God to rescue him and his family from those people. In Qur'an 26, the supplication of Lut (a) and its acceptance are mentioned.[14] Up to that moment, the angels who had not revealed their identity said that Lut (a) has a great support and introduced themselves as the messengers of God.[15] After those men entered Lut's house without permission, their eyes became blind by the order of God.[16] In a hadith from al-Kulayni, it is mentioned that when the people of Lut assaulted the house of Lut (a), angel Gabriel pointed at them with his finger and they all became blind.[17] The angles informed Lut (a) about the happening of divine punishment the other day and asked him to exit the city together with his daughters at night.[18] The story of the attendance of the angels of punishment in the house of Lut (a) and the events afterward are mentioned in Qur'an 11[19] and Qur'an 15.[20]

After Lut (a) and his daughters went out of the city at night, the divine punishment was inflicted upon the people of Lut. Stones rained upon them from the sky and crumbled their city.[21] The story of divine punishment of the people of Lut is mentioned in some suras of the Qur'an.[22] In the Torah too, the stories of angels attending the city of Sodom where prophet Lut (a) lived, the divine punishment of the people of Lut and the survival of Lut (a) and his two daughters from the punishment are mentioned.[23]

Notes

  1. Maqdisī, al-Bidaʾ wa l-tārīkh, vol. 1, p. 444.
  2. Qurʾān, 26:160-175; 29:28-30.
  3. Maqdisī, al-Bidaʾ wa l-tārīkh, vol. 1, p. 444.
  4. Qurʾān, 29:28.
  5. Ibn Khaldūn, Dīwān al-mubtadaʾ wa l-khabar, vol. 2, p. 41.
  6. Ṭabarī, Tārīkh-i Ṭabarī, vol. 1, p. 223.
  7. Ṭabarī, Tārīkh-i Ṭabarī, vol. 1, p. 223; Ibn Kathīr, al-Bidāya wa l-nihāya, vol. 1, p. 179.
  8. Ṭabarī, Tārīkh-i Ṭabarī, vol. 1, p. 225.
  9. When Our messengers came to Lot, he was distressed on their account and in a predicament for their sake, and he said, ‘This is a terrible day!’ (Quran 11:77)
  10. Ṭabarī, Tārīkh-i Ṭabarī, vol. 1, p. 226; Ibn Kathīr, al-Bidāya wa l-nihāya, vol. 1, p. 180.
  11. Ṭabarī, Tārīkh-i Ṭabarī, vol. 1, p. 226.
  12. Ṭabarī, Tārīkh-i Ṭabarī, vol. 1, p. 226.
  13. Ṭabarī, Tārīkh-i Ṭabarī, vol. 1, p. 226.
  14. Qurʾān, 26:169-170.
  15. Ṭabarī, Tārīkh-i Ṭabarī, vol. 1, p. 227.
  16. Qurʾān, 54:37.
  17. Yaʿqūbī, Tārīkh al-Yaʿqūbī, vol. 1, p. 36; Ṭabāṭabāyī, al-Mīzān, vol. 19, p. 161.
  18. Ṭabarī, Tārīkh-i Ṭabarī, vol. 1, p. 227.
  19. Qurʾān, 11:79-83.
  20. Qur'an, 15:66, 76.
  21. Ṭabarī, Tārīkh-i Ṭabarī, vol. 1, p. 227.
  22. Qurʾān, 11:81; 15:66, 76; 51:33.
  23. Genesis, 18:16-23; 19:1-29.

References

  • Ibn Kathīr, Ismāʿīl b. ʿUmar. Al-Bidāya wa l-nihāya. Beirut: Dār al-Fikr, 1407 AH.
  • Ibn Khaldūn, ʿAbd al-Raḥmadn b. Muḥammad. Dīwān al-mubtadaʾ wa l-khabar. Edited by Khalīl Shaḥāda. Second edition. Beirut: Dār al-Fikr, 1408 A.
  • Maqdisī, Muṭahhar b. Ṭāhir al-. Al-Bidaʾ wa l-tārīkh. Translated to Farsi by Muḥammad Riḍā Shafīʿī Kadkanī. Tehran: Āgah, 1374 Sh.
  • Ṭabarī, Muḥammad b. Jarīr al-. Tārīkh-i Ṭabarī. Translated to Farsi by Abu l-Qāsim Pāyanda. Fifth edition. Tehran: Asāṭīr, 1375 Sh.
  • Ṭabāṭabāyī, Muḥammad Ḥusayn. Al-Mīzān fī tafsīr al-Qurʾān. Translated to Farsi by Musawī Hamidānī. Fourth edition. Tehran: Markaz-i Nashr-i Farhangī-yi Rajā, 1370 Sh.
  • Yaʿqūbī, Aḥmad b. Abī Yaʿqūb al-. Tārīkh al-Yaʿqūbī. Beirut: Dār al-Ṣādir, [n.d].