The Tower of Babel
Genesis 11:4
And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach to heaven; and let us make us a name…

I. Three motives may have led to the building of the tower of Babel.

1. A feeling that in union and communion lay the secret of man's renown and strength; that to disperse the family was to debilitate it.

2. A remembrance of the deluge, and a guilty dread of some similar judgment, leading them to draw close to each other for support.

3. Man was awaking to self-consciousness and a knowledge of his own resources. He was gaining a glimpse into the possible progress of civilization. The tower was to be a focus where the rays of his power would be concentrated.

II. To all philanthropists this narrative preaches this simple and sublime truth — that genuine unity is not to be effectually compassed in any other manner than by striking at the original root of discord. Every scheme for the promotion of brotherhood which deals only with the external symptoms of disunion, and aims at correcting only what appears on the surface of society, is ultimately sure of frustration.

III. In His own good time and manner God realized the presumptuous design of the Babel builders, and united in one central institution the scattered families of man. In the mediation of His Son He has reared up a Tower whose top reaches to heaven. It was in order to gather the nations into this world-embracing community that the apostles of Christ went forth charged with a message of peace and love. When the Spirit descended at Pentecost the physical impediment obstructing union — that difference of language which the sin of Babel had introduced — was removed. The apostles spake with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

(Dean Goulburn.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.

WEB: They said, "Come, let's build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top reaches to the sky, and let's make ourselves a name, lest we be scattered abroad on the surface of the whole earth."

The Materials Used to Build It
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