Two Lessons For Us From The Tower of Babel

Genesis 10-11

The Purpose For The Tower Of Babel

It’s funny how you think about things when you’re a kid. I grew up in church and remember hearing the story of the Tower of Babel in Sunday School. I don’t think my teacher said this but I thought the people built the Tower of Babel to try to climb into heaven. I cast that belief aside when I learned one couldn’t physically climb to heaven. However some people today believe that portals exist between earth and heaven. Perhaps that’s why the tower was built?
Tower of Babel

No, that isn’t why they built the Tower of Babel. We only need to look at the Bible to see why it was built. The people who built it said,

Come, let’s build a great city for ourselves with a tower that reaches into the sky. This will make us famous and keep us from being scattered all over the world. Genesis 11:4 NLT

They built the Tower of Babel for two reasons:

  1. To not be scattered around the world.
  2. To become famous. Many translations say “make a name for ourselves.”

Why do you think they were worried about being scattered all over the world? The answer is in Genesis 9:1. When Noah and his family came out of the ark God said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth.” You can’t fill the earth if you stay in one place. God knew of the problems of over populating one area and wisely told our ancestors what to do. They thought they knew better. They didn’t.

There’s a second interesting observation regarding their desire to be famous. They were selfish and acted independently of God. It’s telling that in the next chapter God chose a man named Abram to be His representative on the earth. God told Abram that if he obeyed Him, among other things He would bless him and make him famous, make his name great Genesis 12:2. The problem wasn’t with fame, it was the motivation behind it.

2 Lessons From The Tower Of Babel

  1. If you know what God wants, do it. None of us can stop God. It’s always better to go along with God willingly.
  2. Focus on making God famous. Another way to say that is give God the glory or give God credit. He will then give you the fame He wants you to have.

Our world would be so much better off if we did these two things, wouldn’t it? Actually, it’s not too late for you and me to do them, today and everyday.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Rosa Worth

    wonderful discussion. It seems that people are still trying to live independent from God. So sad. At our church, our pastor always reminds us that there’s only one Star here and that’s Jesus Christ. Keeping this foremost in mind helps me bow to His will for my life. Happy New Year.

    • Hi Rosa, thanks for your comment. Sorry for the delay in getting back to you. I hope you are having a blessed New Year!

  • God did not intend any creature to live in overpopulated conditions…except maybe tent caterpillars, every ten years or so, as an example to the rest of us.

    • 🙂 Yes, that is one way to put it. Thanks for your comment Priscilla, I appreciate it! Sorry for the delay in responding.