The Real Sin at the Tower of Babel

Genesis 11:6
“And the LORD said, ‘Indeed the people are one and they all have one language, and this is what they begin to do; now nothing that they propose to do will be withheld from them.'”

A misunderstanding of some of the history recorded in Genesis has led some people to conclude that we are repeating the sins committed at the Tower of Babel. After all, we build huge cities and incredibly high skyscrapers. English is now virtually a universal language, and the Internet has led to the international pooling of knowledge.

Engraving: "The Confusion of Tongues" by Gustave Doré (1865).The truth is that a universal language was not the reason God confused the language at Babel, although it contributed to the problem. Nor was creating a large tower the problem, although it too was a symptom of the people’s pride. Pride certainly was a problem, and it led to the core sin committed at Babel. The core sin the people committed was defying God’s command to subdue or inhabit the whole Earth. In failing to spread over the globe, they were only inhabiting a small part of it. God’s command that people spread over the entire Earth was for our protection. He knew that if we were all one people, a dangerous, dictator-led government could not be kept in check. God also knew that if one nation was infected with dangerous false philosophies there would be no other people who knew the truth.

In confusing their language at the Tower of Babel, God protected us from all of this. While we may not always understand the reason for God’s commands, He always has our well being in mind. That’s because He is our loving Creator.

Dear Father, I give You thanks and praise because You always have my well-being in mind. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Engraving: “The Confusion of Tongues” by Gustave Doré (1865).