There is a new word introduced in the story of Sodom and Gomorrah that we might have missed in this familiar pillar of salt Bible Story. We often retell it highlighting God’s wrath and destruction due to evilness. While that is true, the new introduced word “ze’aqah” roughly translates to the “unique cry of the unjustly oppressed.” Later in Ezekiel, the prophet identifies the oppressed as the neglected poor and needy in the city.
God didn’t just destroy the city because of his anger against sin, He heard the cry of the oppressed and responded to their sorrow. Throughout the Bible, we are admonished to remember the vulnerable, to listen to the cry of the unjustly oppressed.
In our world of distraction and noise, sometimes it’s hard to hear.When we stop and listen, we can’t ignore the pattern in Scripture:
God hears the cry of the oppressed and disadvantaged;
He remembers those He loves, bound to him in covenant;
and finally, He acts to rescue and deliver those in bondage.
While the power structures of the world seek ways to exploit or turn a blind eye to the people on the edges of society, God gives them special attention. Like a compassionate father moved by the tears of his children, God is moved to righteous anger and powerful action.
God is looking for people who hear the cry.
Can you hear it?
It’s a day to remember, to listen ….