Summary: Humanities second devastating fall came at the tower of Babel with the loss of clear communication. Pride absolutely cripples us as communicators.
Dakota Community Church
July 2, 2006
The Second Fall
We just came back from a great men’s retreat weekend where one of the themes turned out to be the power of unity and God’s desire for us all to be one even though that idea kind of goes against our natural inclination as men.
We all know the events that happened in the Garden of Eden that resulted in man’s fall from unity and relationship with God. (John Eldredge’s comments on the fall in Epic)
In our pride we chose disobedience and lost that intimate fellowship that we all long so deeply for.
What about unity with each other though?
Why does it seem so elusive? Why is there so much pain and hurt even amoung friends and brothers.
We know it should not be this way:
Psalm 133: 1, 3
How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!
For there the LORD bestows his blessing, even life forevermore.
Let’s look again at what Jesus prayed for us in John 17:
"My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.
And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
Clearly the Lord desires and favors unity amoung His people and conversely:
There are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers.
Why do you suppose these things are so?
1. There is great power and blessing in unity.
I have seen marriages that were in very bad shape recover as a result of an attack or adversity.
In a Peanuts cartoon Lucy demanded that Linus change TV channels, threatening him with her fist if he didn’t. "What makes you think you can walk right in here and take over?" asks Linus.
"These five fingers," says Lucy. "Individually they’re nothing but when I curl them together like this into a single unit, they form a weapon that is terrible to behold."
"Which channel do you want?" asks Linus. Turning away, he looks at his fingers and says, "Why can’t you guys get organized like that?" - Charles Schultz.
- Unity can only be maintained if there is clear communication.
My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. I and the Father are one."
How great is it when someone eloquently expresses an idea that goes way beyond the mere words.
Have you ever been blown away by a powerful song?
In the song he wrote after the death of his father, U2’s Bono writes:
And it’s you when I look in the mirror,
It’s you when I don’t pick up the phone
A man finds joy in giving an apt reply— and how good is a timely word!
Don’t you love it when you don’t think of the great come back line ten minutes after the other person has left the room?
I don’t mean just for smart Alec remarks but for real high impact moments.
- How about when Nathan the Prophet said to King David, “You are the man.”
A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.
So what happened to us? How did we get so divided?
Now the whole world had one language and a common speech. As men 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 and not be scattered over the face of the whole earth."