Have you ever been to Babel? I was there briefly in Chapter 11 of Genesis. It was named Babylonia when the people first settled there. They found themselves wanting to build a great city . . . “with a tower whose top may reach unto heaven.” They wanted to be famous. They wanted to stay together. So why didn’t Babylonia succeed? Read on to see what happened to Babylonia.
9 Therefore is the name of it called Babel; because the Lord did there confound the language of all the earth: and from thence did the Lord scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth. -Genesis 11; 9
Thoughts on Genesis 11:
The Lord seemed to think that if the people of Babel were successful there would be nothing that they could not do if they imagined it to be. I wonder if we, all the people that cover the earth, can get back to that place? Do you think its possible?
Highlights of Genesis 11:
- The people come together and build a great city.
- Their goal was to be famous and not be spread out over the world.
- BUT the Lord did not want this and scattered the people by making them speak different languages which confused them all.
- The rest of the chapter describes the family tree of Shem and Terah.
- They continue to have long lives, well longer than the ones we have now.
Questions of Genesis 11:
Why was it not a good thing for everyone to speak the same language and to be united? Isn’t this something we try and aim to be now, united as a human beings? To put aside our differences and be one? I reread Chapter 9, where God says “Be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth.” Perhaps God should have given more specific instructions for it seems they want to settle and not spread out. Although family typically wants to stay close to family, right?
What were your thoughts on Genesis 11? Why do you think the Lord did not want the people of Babel to not build their city? Did you have any questions as you read the chapter?
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