Learning another language can be hard. In our text today, however, we learn that humanity shared a common language. After an act of rebellion before God, we lost that gift. God has ways of reminding us that we are not in control, but that He is.
Read Genesis 11:1-9
This passage unveils basic human needs. These dwellers in the plain of Shinar (later to become Babylon), looked to attain security and identity. By building a tower, they were going to have a secure place and no longer be considered a scattered people. If they could make their name great, gain an identity, they would feel like they had people to which they belonged. However, they did this as an act of rebellion to God. In doing so, they refused the security and identity that we can only find in the Lord.
Human ingenuity is also highlighted in this passage. When God saw man’s rebellion, it was noted that nothing would be held back from them. People are innovative. I believe that is because we are made in God’s image, howbeit, distorted and broken. We still retain some of those qualities. Such as, God is a Holy Trinity, and we only exist in a web of relationships. It takes the relationships of others for us to be born and to thrive. Another area is creativity. We are creative because we were made in the likeness of our Creator.
The last thing that jumps out to us is the unity of language. One of the greatest barriers throughout time has been languages. At the Tower of Babel, there was unity through one language, but the people were rebellious. On the day of Pentecost, according to the second chapter of Acts, the early believers were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues (languages in the Greek). They left the upper room where they stayed and went into the streets. People from all corners of Rome’s territory heard them speak in their languages. God unified the people in the Church through His Spirit. We can only imagine that in heaven, people every tribe, nation, and tongue will worship God with one voice, as in the days of our creation.