“Now, on seeing them,” the text goes on, “Lot rose to meet them.” Let this be heeded by those who are given to repulsing people who call on them with requests to make and causes to plead and who show them great inhumanity. I mean, see how this good man did not wait until the visitors reached him but like the patriarch, without knowing who the visitors were but presuming that they were travelers of some kind, well nigh jumped for joy on seeing them, as though falling upon his prey and not missing the object of his desire.
“Now, the two angels,” the text says, “arrived at Sodom in the evening.” The time in particular shows us this good man’s extraordinary virtue in the fact that even despite the coming of evening he stayed at his post and did not leave it. That is to say, since he realized the advantage accruing to him from that, consequently he was anxious to attain the wealth and brought great vigilance to bear, not even desisting at the end of the day. This, you see, is what a fervent and vigilant soul is like. Far from being impeded by any obstacles from giving evidence of its virtue, it is spurred on to greater heights by the very impediments in particular and burns with a brighter flame of desire.
: Scripture seems to have made no mention at all of angels before the flood. Only now [does it mention angels], as though seeing fit to have instructed people abundantly, by the length of the time past, to regard as God and Lord of the universe only that one Being who had made the created universe and supplied human beings, beginning with Adam, with the appropriate knowledge. [This knowledge was supplied] by his providence and through a variety of visions, guiding its transmission from the first people to those who followed in order.