Summary: A sermon that looks at the tower of Babel and applies the lesson to the sin of pride in our lives.
THE PRIDE OF BABEL
A little boy was overheard talking to himself as he strutted through the backyard, wearing his baseball cap and toting a ball and bat. "I’m the greatest hitter in the world," he announced.
Then, he tossed the ball into the air, swung at it, and missed.
"Strike One!" he yelled. Undaunted, he picked up the ball and said again, "I’m the greatest hitter in the world!"
He tossed the ball into the air. When it came down he swung again and missed. "Strike Two!" he cried.
The boy then paused a moment to examine his bat and ball carefully. He spit on his hands and rubbed them together. He straightened his cap and said once more, "I’m the greatest hitter in the world!"
Again he tossed the ball up in the air and swung at it. He missed. "Strike Three!"
"Wow!" he exclaimed. "I’m the greatest pitcher in the world!"
Pastor Michael Hartwig of Valparaiso, Indiana, tells this story: I started visiting a man in a nursing home who had been instrumental in starting the major industry in town. When he died, I was asked to do the funeral service. I was nervous, because I knew our church would be packed with dignitaries.
The service went well, and on our way to the cemetery I began turning in my Bible to the passage I was to read at the graveside. While I was turning to 1 Corinthians 15, read about our resurrection body, the funeral director asked me a question. I could tell he was impressed with the gospel message I had brought. He asked several questions, and I answered each one. I was proud of myself and the job I had done. Here was a man who had listened to hundreds of funeral services, and he singled out mine as being one of the best.
With this on my heart I stood at the head of the casket with the family and friends in front of me. I asked them to listen to the words of Scripture. I read with a sense of dignity 1 Corinthians 5:1: "It is reported commonly that there are fornicators among you!"
Pride is a deadly virus that will eat away at us emotionally and spiritually. It is a great deceiver. Pride has destroyed more marriages and churches than any other thing. Nimrod founded the place called Babel. He was attempting to build a world empire without the blessing or direction of God. He was the great-grandson of Noah. He also was the founder of Nineveh, the wicked place where Jonah was sent to preach.
I. PRIDE WILL AFFECT OUR WORSHIP. “Whose top will reach up to heaven.”
A) This tower was a ziggurat with runway or stair that went around the edge up to the top. At the top of these towers (which are commonly found in ruins of that area) there was an altar used for pagan sacrifice.
B) Pride affects our worship when we try to impress God or others with our goodness.
1) God is no respector of persons……We must be careful not to take on the attitude of the Pharisee in the temple.
2) Being active in the service of God is a privilege. God loves us and wants to use us in his service but he doesn’t need us. If I walk away from his service today, He will raise up another to take my place.
C) I cannot worship God with a spirit of pride. Psa 101:5
The word “suffer” means to endure or in our words “put up with.”
II. PRIDE WILL AFFECT OUR VIEW OF LIFE. “and let us make us a name.”
A) Every person who has attempted to be a world ruler has been defeated. From Nimrod to Nebucadnezzer to Hitler to Stalin and even the Antichrist in end times. Destruction and judgment from God is promised to the one with this attitude.
B) We will ignore the direction of the Holy Spirit in our life.
1) When He convicts of sin—we will break through the warning barriers.
2) When He gives us direction—we will go our own way.
C) We will take credit for things that we shouldn’t. It’s like the beaver told the rabbit as they stared up at the immense wall of Hoover Dam, "No, I didn’t actually build it myself. But it was based on an idea of mine." —Charles H. Townes
D) It will cause a great deal of envy and division in our life, home, and church.
1) Every affair starts because someone thinks they deserve a better spouse than they have.
2) We will refuse to follow the scriptural admonition to put others first.
III. PRIDE WILL RESULT IN THE VERY THING WE WANT TO AVOID. “lest we be scattered”