Genesis 19:4 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 19:4, NIV: "Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom--both young and old--surrounded the house."

Genesis 19:4, ESV: "But before they lay down, the men of the city, the men of Sodom, both young and old, all the people to the last man, surrounded the house."

Genesis 19:4, KJV: "But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter:"

Genesis 19:4, NASB: "Before they lay down, the men of the city—the men of Sodom—surrounded the house, both young and old, all the people from every quarter;"

Genesis 19:4, NLT: "But before they retired for the night, all the men of Sodom, young and old, came from all over the city and surrounded the house."

Genesis 19:4, CSB: "Before they went to bed, the men of the city of Sodom, both young and old, the whole population, surrounded the house."

What does Genesis 19:4 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Abraham's nephew, Lot, has welcomed two traveling strangers into his home in Sodom for the night. He has prepared for them a feast and has given them a place to stay. He doesn't seem to know, yet, that these men are angels disguised in human form, and he can't know that they've been sent from God to investigate the sins of the city in preparation for God's judgment.

After they've eaten and before they've gone to bed, the sins of the men of the city now become evident. Lot desperately argued with the angels to keep them from spending the night in the town square. By offering them his home for the night, and encouraging them to leave early, Lot seems to be trying to keep their presence a secret from the predators of the city. This attempt fails, as all of the men of Sodom gather at Lot's house and surround the place.

The men spell out their evil intentions clearly in the following verses. The text is careful to note that every man in the city of every age is involved in this attempted crime. This is a crucial fact, since the Lord had assured Abraham that the city would not be destroyed if ten righteous people were found there (Genesis 18:32). It's now clear that number won't be reached—Sodom is completely and totally corrupt.