16 And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way. 17 And the Lord said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; 18 Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? 19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him. 20 And the Lord said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous; 21 I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know.
I’m not sure if there are any other passages in the Bible that give as clear a picture into the mind of the Lord as this one does. We see how He weighs the quality of Abraham before telling Him that He will destroy Sodom and Gomorrah.
And this marks an important shift in the relationship between Abraham and God. This is God opening up to Abraham about His private plans, plans that deal with other people and not just Abraham. He is inviting Abraham to give Him his opinion, to counsel with Him, to be a partner and not just a servant. Jesus called out this exact sort of shift in relationship in John 15:15: “Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends.”
And, as we will see tomorrow, Abraham does have counsel to offer. He will make a case to God, and God will take it very seriously because He respects Abraham’s opinion.