اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ بِجَمِیعِ مَحَامِدِه کُلِّهَا عَلَی جَمِیعِ نِعَمِهِ کُلِّهَا… اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ مالِکِ الْمُلْکِ مُجْرِی الْفُلْکِ مُسَخِّرِ الرِّیاحِ فالِقِ الاْصْباحِ دَیّانِ الدّینِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمینَ اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ عَلی حِلْمِهِ بَعْدَ عِلمِهِ وَالْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ عَلی عَفْوِهِ بَعْدَ قُدْرَتِهِ وَالْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ عَلی طُولِ اَناتِهِ فی غَضَبِهِ وَهُوَ قادِرٌ عَلی ما یُریدُ
Praise is to God with all his praises, for all his blessings. . . Praise is to God, the owner of the property, the operator of the orbit, the bender of the wind, the glory of the morning, the religion of the beliefs, lord of the worlds; praise is to God for his dream after his knowledge and thank God for forgiveness after his power, and praise be to God for his long patience in his wrath and he is capable to do what he wills
و نشهد أن لا اله الا الله وحده لا شریک له، و أَنَّ محمداً عبده و رسوله ارسله بالهدی و دین الحق لیظهره علی الدین کله و لو کره المشرکون اوصیکم عبادالله و نفسی بتقوی الله و اتباع امره و نهیه، و اخوفکم من عقابه
And we bear witness that there is no god but God alone, without partner, and that Muhammad is his servant and messenger, he sent him with guidance and the religion of truth, that he might proclaim it over all religion, even if the polytheists hated it.
Innovation in sin by the people of Loot
According to the holy Qur’an, the people of Loot (the inhabitants of the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah) took the initiative in sin. The Qur’an says:
وَلُوطًا إِذْ قَالَ لِقَوْمِهِ إِنَّكُمْ لَتَأْتُونَ الْفَاحِشَةَ مَا سَبَقَكُمْ بِهَا مِنْ أَحَدٍ مِنَ الْعَالَمِينَ؛
And Lot, when he said to his people, ‘You indeed commit an indecency none in the world has ever committed before you! (Ankaboot: 28)
That is why this sin has been recorded in their name in history. In Arabic this sin is called by the name of the prophet of that people and in English it is called by the city of that people.
Is every initiative and innovation good?
Of course, not every initiative and invention is defensible. Initiative, invention and innovation are very good if they are in the direction of social and economic progress and prosperity of human beings, but they are not desirable if they are in the path of human destruction.
Scientists like Edison who invented or discovered the electricity, or the Wright brothers who created the airplane, or Graham Bell who invented the telephone, or the one who made the car, or other inventions and initiatives that paved the way for human well-being and health did more in individual, family and social life; the initiative of theirs is very useful and worthy of appreciation.
The discoverers of various vaccines, which have served human health and taken an important step in eradicating many deadly diseases, have an important role over the human life. The scientists, who, with the discovery of the Corona vaccine, helped to control the disease and save many lives, have a great impact on the human beings’ lives;
On the other hand, scientists who used their valuable knowledge and scientific efforts to invent weapons of mass destruction and wanted to destroy human beings and lands, own an innovation which lacks moral and value.
Both groups are scientists, both groups are engaged in careful scientific research, both groups are working, but one for the health of human beings, and the other for their destruction.
Thus, in the twentieth century, many deadly diseases that sometimes kill large numbers of people have been curbed or eradicated, and perhaps the advancement of medical science and human health has been greater than all of the previous 19 centuries; and in the same century, the killing of people in wars has been more than a total of 19 centuries ago.
The people’s reaction to the prophet Loot
After Loot warned his people about their sins and called them to purity, piety, and obedience to God’s commands, the people of the city confronted him and threatened to expel him from the city. In their eyes, Loot’s crime was an invitation to his purity. The Qur’an says:
وَمَا كَانَ جَوَابَ قَوْمِهِ إِلَّا أَنْ قَالُوا أَخْرِجُوهُمْ مِنْ قَرْيَتِكُمْ إِنَّهُمْ أُنَاسٌ يَتَطَهَّرُونَ؛
But the only answer of his people was that they said, ‘Expel them from your town! They are indeed a puritanical lot.’ (A’raaf: 82)
The inhabitants of the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah also said to the prophet Loot himself, “If you do not refuse the invitation to purity and piety, we will expel you:”
قَالُوا لَئِنْ لَمْ تَنْتَهِ يَا لُوطُ لَتَكُونَنَّ مِنَ الْمُخْرَجِينَ؛
They said, ‘Lot, if you do not desist, you will surely be banished.’ (Sho’ara: 167)
Loot, who was disappointed with the effect of his words among the people, while expressing his opposition to this attitude of them, prayed to God and asked for his salvation:
قَالَ إِنِّي لِعَمَلِكُمْ مِنَ الْقَالِينَ؛ رَبِّ نَجِّنِي وَأَهْلِي مِمَّا يَعْمَلُونَ؛
He said, ‘Indeed I detest your conduct.’ ‘My Lord! Deliver me and my family from what they do.’ (Sho’raa: 168 – 169)
Loot people demanded punishment from him. With this demand, they wanted to show their belief in what they said to other people, as well as to prove the baselessness of the prophet Loot’s claim without the punishment. The holy Qur’an reports:
فَمَا كَانَ جَوَابَ قَوْمِهِ إِلَّا أَنْ قَالُوا ائْتِنَا بِعَذَابِ اللَّهِ إِنْ كُنْتَ مِنَ الصَّادِقِينَ؛
What! Do you come to men, and cut off the way, and commit outrages in your gatherings?’ But the only answer of his people was that they said, ‘Bring down us Allah’s punishment, if you are truthful.’ (Ankaboot: 29)
Guests of Ibrahim and Loot
The holy Qur’an reports that the divine angels first came to Ibrahim and gave him the good news of the birth of Isaac, and then spoke about the people of Loot and announced that divine punishment had descended on that people. Ibrahim Khalil began to argue with them about the people of Loot. He tried to avert the torment from them لَمَّا ذَهَبَ عَنْ إِبْرَاهِيمَ الرَّوْعُ وَجَاءَتْهُ الْبُشْرَى يُجَادِلُنَا فِي قَوْمِ لُوطٍ؛ So when the awe had left Abraham and the good news had reached him, he pleaded with Us concerning the people of Lot (Hood: 74). The holy Qur’an describes this controversy in more detail:
وَلَمَّا جَاءَتْ رُسُلُنَا إِبْرَاهِيمَ بِالْبُشْرَى قَالُوا إِنَّا مُهْلِكُو أَهْلِ هَذِهِ الْقَرْيَةِ إِنَّ أَهْلَهَا كَانُوا ظَالِمِينَ؛ قَالَ إِنَّ فِيهَا لُوطًا قَالُوا نَحْنُ أَعْلَمُ بِمَنْ فِيهَا لَنُنَجِّيَنَّهُ وَأَهْلَهُ إِلَّا امْرَأَتَهُ كَانَتْ مِنَ الْغَابِرِينَ،
And when Our messengers came to Abraham with the good news, they said, ‘We are indeed going to destroy the people of this town. Its people are indeed wrongdoers.’ He said, ‘Lot is in it.’ They said, ‘We know better those who are in it. We will surely deliver him and his family, except his wife: she shall be one of those who remain behind.’ (Ankaboot: 31-32)