Summary: Babylon represents mankind uniting to assert themselves against God; it is about who has the power and control, God or man?
The Babylonian Theme
1. Some things go back a long way: A little boy opened the big and old family Bible with fascination, looking at the old pages as he turned them. Then something fell out, and he picked it up and looked at it closely. It was an old leaf from a tree that had been pressed in between the pages. "Momma, look what I found," the boy called out. "What have you got there, dear?" his mother asked. With astonishment in the his voice, he answered, "It’s Adam’s Suit!" [www.thespringharvest.com]
2. Many themes introduced in Genesis are seen throughout the Bible: man’s fallen condition in Adam, God’s call of the Jewish people, the coming Messiah, even the tempter of Eden, Satan.
3. Another such key theme is Babylon, aka, “Babel” or the plains of Shinar. Nowadays, we know this region as Iraq.
4. Babylon is mentioned 260 times in Scripture, and is second in importance only to Jerusalem.
Main Idea: Babylon represents mankind uniting to assert themselves against God; it is about who has the power and control, God or man?
I. Babylon Signifies the UNITING of the Word Against God (Genesis 11:1-9)
A. WHY the Tower of Babel? (show pic 1, Ur, then pic 2, Borippa)
"Now it was Nimrod who excited them to such an affront and contempt of God. He was the grandson of Ham, the son of Noah, a bold man, and of great strength of hand. He persuaded them not to ascribe it to God, as if it were through his means they were happy, but to believe that it was their own courage which procured that happiness. He also gradually changed the government into tyranny, seeing no other way of turning men from the fear of God, but to bring them into a constant dependence on his power. He also said he would be revenged on God, if he should have a mind to drown the world again; for that he would build a tower too high for the waters to reach. And that he would avenge himself on God for destroying their forefathers.
Now the multitude were very ready to follow the determination of Nimrod, and to esteem it a piece of cowardice to submit to God; and they built a tower, neither sparing any pains, nor being in any degree negligent about the work: and, by reason of the multitude of hands employed in it, it grew very high, sooner than any one could expect; but the thickness of it was so great, and it was so strongly built, that thereby its great height seemed, upon the view, to be less than it really was. It was built of burnt brick, cemented together with mortar, made of bitumen, that it might not be liable to admit water. When God saw that they acted so madly, he did not resolve to destroy them utterly, since they were not grown wiser by the destruction of the former sinners; but he caused a tumult among them, by producing in them diverse languages, and causing that, through the multitude of those languages, they should not be able to understand one another. The place wherein they built the tower is now called Babylon, because of the confusion of that language which they readily understood before; for the Hebrews mean by the word Babel, confusion…"
From the Epic of Gilgamesh
“The building of this temple offended the gods. In a night they threw down what had been built. They scattered them abroad, and made strange their speech. The progress they impeded.”
B. Nebuchadnezzar’s IDOL (Daniel 3)
C. The nation that DEVASTATES Judah (2 Kings 25)
D. The APOSTASY (which means rebellion, the Babel theme)
1. The ultimate humanism: man is to be worshipped and is above God (fits atheism, eastern thought, pantheism)
2. Psalm 2 defines this apostasy and what it is that stops it…
3. 2 Thessalonians 2:3, “Let no one deceive you in any way. For that day will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction…”
Application: God merely delayed what would happen until the time was right by confusing the languages. Babylon is an attitude we all have, but seek to restrain.
1. Whenever we shake our fist at God and choose our way over his, we are embracing this attitude.
2. Whenever we base our beliefs on a fad or peer group rather than the Word…
3. “I don’t care. I can’t stand this anymore; I’ll have my way or bust”
4. Babel exposes that human sinfulness is not just a matter or ignorance…
5. Babel is about pride, control, power, who gets his or her way…
Babylon represents mankind uniting to assert themselves against God; it is about who has the power and control, God or man?