Pride Before A Fall
Lord, Your words are true and trustworthy in all respects. I thank You for freely giving them to me.
Read Genesis 11:1-32
 Now the whole world had one language and a common speech.  As people moved eastward, they found a plain in Shinar and settled there.  They said to each other, “Come, let’s make bricks and bake them thoroughly.” They used brick instead of stone, and tar for mortar.  Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves; otherwise we will be scattered over the face of the whole earth.”  But the LORD came down to see the city and the tower the people were building.  The LORD said, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them.  Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.”  So the LORD scattered them from there over all the earth, and they stopped building the city.  That is why it was called Babel-because there the LORD confused the language of the whole world. From there the LORD scattered them over the face of the whole earth.  This is the account of Shem’s family line. Two years after the flood, when Shem was 100 years old, he became the father of Arphaxad.  And after he became the father of Arphaxad, Shem lived 500 years and had other sons and daughters.  When Arphaxad had lived 35 years, he became the father of Shelah.  And after he became the father of Shelah, Arphaxad lived 403 years and had other sons and daughters.  When Shelah had lived 30 years, he became the father of Eber.  And after he became the father of Eber, Shelah lived 403 years and had other sons and daughters.  When Eber had lived 34 years, he became the father of Peleg.  And after he became the father of Peleg, Eber lived 430 years and had other sons and daughters.  When Peleg had lived 30 years, he became the father of Reu.  And after he became the father of Reu, Peleg lived 209 years and had other sons and daughters.  When Reu had lived 32 years, he became the father of Serug.  And after he became the father of Serug, Reu lived 207 years and had other sons and daughters.  When Serug had lived 30 years, he became the father of Nahor.  And after he became the father of Nahor, Serug lived 200 years and had other sons and daughters.  When Nahor had lived 29 years, he became the father of Terah.  And after he became the father of Terah, Nahor lived 119 years and had other sons and daughters.  After Terah had lived 70 years, he became the father of Abram, Nahor and Haran.  This is the account of Terah’s family line. Terah became the father of Abram, Nahor and Haran. And Haran became the father of Lot.  While his father Terah was still alive, Haran died in Ur of the Chaldeans, in the land of his birth.  Abram and Nahor both married. The name of Abram’s wife was Sarai, and the name of Nahor’s wife was Milkah; she was the daughter of Haran, the father of both Milkah and Iskah.  Now Sarai was childless because she was not able to conceive.  Terah took his son Abram, his grandson Lot son of Haran, and his daughter-in-law Sarai, the wife of his son Abram, and together they set out from Ur of the Chaldeans to go to Canaan. But when they came to Harran, they settled there.  Terah lived 205 years, and he died in Harran. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat do you think was the motivation to build this tower?
Around 2,500 translators work to make sense of the 23 languages spoken at the headquarters of the European Union. The millions of dollars in annual cost was perhaps considered worth it after reflection on the ruins out of which modern Europe emerged after World War II. Modern tyrannies have a good deal in common with the people of Babel: They are fiercely assertive and determined to make a name for themselves (4) when, in truth, the way to prosperity is through exalting the name of God (see Psalm 1). These builders seem to proceed from a mixture of pride and fear. They reach for the top while all the time looking over their shoulders. The actual quality of their work–bitumen and brick instead of mortar and stone–is fairly poor, and the word used for their planning suggests low, cunning devices rather than genuine, creative inspiration. The people think their tower is so splendidly high, but God still has to come down to look at it. Thank the Lord that in his mercy he has never allowed free rein to the proud imaginings of the human heart (see also Luke 2:51).
Compare the experience of someone at Babel with that of someone in Acts 2. What lessons might be learned?
Lord, “may the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be pleasing in Your sight” (Psa. 19:14).
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