Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Babel in Reverse

I'm just going to put it out there. The truth is our flesh craves stuff. Our flesh lusts. Our flesh lies with the promise of a good outcome of our sinful choice. It's a daily battle for Christians to say "no" to sin and "yes" to God.  

And from Genesis to Revelation, we read how people easily pervert the word of God and His promises just to fit their moods and passions. Self. Self-centered. Selfish. This always causes pain. 

It's the same today, of course. We still fight with our fleshly desires which is why we need a Savior, namely Jesus Christ. And still, in weak moments we don't feel like resisting -- even though we have Holy Spirit power to do so --  and we fall. We want to be accepted and follow the crowd. They say they're God's 'crowd' but they really don't have the fruit that proves it. 

Look at the story of the Tower of Babel in Genesis 11:1-9.  Babel, the 'monumental effort motivated by pride' (ESV commentary). Babel. It was a tower of idolatry. Babel. As in babbling, you know, talking gibberish or confusing language. Yep. Babel is the root word for babbling (no, I'm not of Greek descent).   :)

Here's the truth. "Now the whole world had one language and a common speech. As men moved eastward, they found a plain in Shinar and settled there" (verses 11:1-2). Sounds like unity which could change the world for good, doesn't it? You have a large gathering all "on the same page" and speaking the same language desiring to worship. That's good, right? Sounds like a great church. Yep. 

Nope. Because 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 earth" (Genesis 11:3-4). THIS IS NOT WHAT GOD HAD IN MIND. 

See, we want to be like God, the One who created us. We don't want to be told what to do. We want to live the way we choose and make up our own rules of what is right and what is wrong. We want! We want it now, too! That's not a new concept either. It began in the Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve and the serpent. The lie came in the form of a tempting, tasty fruit and Eve swallowed it: "...when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God..." (Genesis 3:5). Adam and Eve were cursed. The ground was cursed. Curse! Curse! Curse! Hopelessness!

That's the way it appeared. But God had a plan of salvation already in place. He had the promise of the precious and powerful blood of Jesus Christ poured out to reverse the curse and defeat our enemy the devil. 

(Yep. It's actually road kill. But hey, it's a dead snake! Don't hate.) 

"So the LORD God said to the serpent, "Because you have done this, Cursed are you above all livestock...I will put enmity between you and the woman and between your offspring and hers; He will crush your head, and you will strike His heel" (Genesis 3:14-15).

So when an evil group or evil ruler rises up, God sees. God knows and He will have His way in His perfect timing. 
(A different kind of tower.)

He speaks to the earth,"Why do the nations conspire and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth gather together against the LORD and against His Anointed One...The One enthroned in heaven laughs; the LORD scoffs at them. Then He rebukes them in His anger and terrifies them in His wrath" (Psalm 2:1-5). The point is, we can't mess with God. He is LORD. He is all-powerful and He will have His way!

When the tower builders proudly announced their sacrilegious rule, "the LORD came down to see the city and the tower the men were building" (Genesis 11:5). God announced that because they were one people speaking the same language and in heinous rebellion, He said, "nothing will be impossible for them. Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other. So the LORD scattered them from there all over the earth and they stopped building the city" (v.8). And God scattered them all over the earth! Enough. Period. Done.

So today we see that all of the world is filled with different languages, tribes and nations! And guess what? God's wise, sovereign hand has, by His grace, reversed the Babel curse! 

Hallelujah! From Genesis to Revelation the Blood of the Lamb of God who came to take away the sins of the world, has reversed the curse and redeemed His people! Look what He has done: reversed the Babel curse! 

"And they sang a new song: 
'You are worthy to take the scroll 
and to open its seal, 
because you were slain, 
and with your blood you 
purchased men for God 
from every tribe and language and people and nation. 
You have made them to be a kingdom 
and priests to serve our God, 
and they will reign on the earth." 
(Revelation 5:9-10).

Thankful. Praise. Glory to God. Majestic in all His ways. 
I'm undone. 

"Glorify the Lord with me; let us exalt His Name together!"
Psalm 34:3