The answer is found in an ancient story recorded in Genesis 11. It’s the story of the Tower of Babel. It all started with a man whose name meant, the rebel. The Bible identifies him as Nimrod. Believe it or not, Nimrod was Noah’s great-grandson. Where Noah excelled in righteousness, Nimrod excelled in wickedness. Among other things, here is what we know about Nimrod --
1. He was the first world ruler
2. He may have been a giant like Goliath
3. He was a tyrant or a dictator
4. He led people in rebellion against God
After the flood, God commanded Noah and his sons to scatter and fill the earth. But Nimrod rebelled against God and convinced the people stay together and build the City of Babel (Babylon), “with a tower that reaches to the heavens” (Genesis 11:4).
The Tower of Babel was not a Jack-and-the-Beanstalk construction where people were actually trying to reach heaven. Rather, it was a Ziggurat - a tower with a temple on top dedicated to the worship of the heavens (the stars). Astrology and the occult all got their start in Babylon, and this just a matter of years after the flood!
God saw what was happening and the danger involved. So in an act of mercy He stopped the people by confusing their language. At that time the whole world spoke one language. God knew if He confused their language He could defeat their plan. So that is exactly what God did. This is how the place was named Babel (confusion).
Some believe the languages evolved over millions of years just like people. But according to the Bible, God created mankind in a day and the languages in just a moment. Unable to understand each other, the project of the Tower of Babel came to an end as the people scattered according to their languages. Genesis 10:32 says this was the beginning of the nations.
This Old Testament story does more than tell us about the origin of the languages and nations. It also serves to remind us that when we go our own way it leads to confusion. On the other hand, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding” (Proverbs 9:10).
Pastor Todd Weston