In Genesis 11:1-9 we learn that there was only one language spoken in the world. We also discover that the folks who had decided to dwell upon a plain in a place called Shinar had the ability to make brick. They, also, knew how to convert slime into mortar, as well.
With their brick and mortar they decided they should build themselves a city; complete with a tower whose top would reach into heaven. Apparently, as I understand this story, the idea behind this massive undertaking was so that they could make a name for themselves; automatically commanding respect from all others they might encounter in the world.
As the people of Shinar were building the city the LORD came down to check things out. However, the Lord felt that because the people were able to work as one, “Nothing would be restrained from them, which they had imagined to do.”
So, the Lord confounded the people of Shinar to insure that they would be restrained in their actions; terminating their understanding of one another’s speech. Understandably; the people building what is now known as the city of Babel stopped due to a God inspired breakdown of communication.
We are also told in The Bible in Genesis 11:1-9 that the Lord scattered the people of Shinar over the face of the earth. “However,” in addition to giving us some insight as to how foreign language was born; this story does raise some serious questions as to how connected is too connected.
Is God really pleased with the fact that we have the ability to talk with folks anywhere in the world via Social Media, “Regardless of their language?” Somehow I just don’t think so!
“Yup!” I’ve got a feeling that we are pushing God’s tolerance to the limit. “Sure!” While the continuing rise of Social Media and the language translation software that enables its expansion to larger and larger audiences may be seen by many as a good thing; I’m very concerned that many Christians have forgotten about the ancient city of Babel and the fate of the Shinar people involved in its conception/construction.
While many will point out that tech wasn’t around during biblical times; I believe that its existence today makes many points in The Bible no less relevant. The Bible teaches us the kinds of things that the existence of technology will never phase out.
If technological advances actually had the ability to make The Bible as we know it irrelevant I’m quite certain God would have made sure we all got an updated copy. “But,” He has yet to inspire anyone to write a New Bible. So, I can only assume that the original still stands.
“And,” since God didn’t want the Shinar people to be “unrestrained” in their abilities to turn whatever they imagined into reality back then; I can only assume that the story of Babel is still relevant today. Therefore; despite all of our technological advances, I believe The Bible makes it pretty clear that…
- We should always look to the Lord for guidance with our creations rather than striking out on our own.
- Discipleship involves a none technologically produced face to face conversation.
- Fellowship involves human interaction rather than a Twitter account.
- True stewardship is far more personal than just transferring money from Bitcoin or PayPal.
- Group prayer is to be done in a room and not via Skype, Facebook, or Google Plus.
- If God wants us to talk with those whose language is foreign to us, “The Lord himself will grant us the ability to do so,” far more effectively than language translation software ever will.