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Return to the Tower of Babel? (Part I: Introduction)

Now the whole earth had one language and one speech…Then they said to one another, Come, let us build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top is in the heavens and let us make a name for ourselves…’ But the Lord came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. 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. Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech.So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of all the earth…Therefore its name is called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of all the earth, and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of all the earth.” (Gen. 11:1-9)

Are we trying to build a Tower of Babel today? Unbeknownst to us, is the world trying to “build a tower whose top is in the heavens, to make a name for ourselves?” If so, what does it look like, how have we done it, what is happening currently to speed up the construction, what are the dangers, and how does God view it? To answer the first question, I believe the answer is yes, we are. Absolutely. As to the answers of the rest, they may not be quite so simple. In this series we (my son and I) will look at each of these questions from different perspectives to perhaps gain a wide view of what may be a complicated scenario.

A note from Mike:

With this topic as the launching point for a new series, I am truly excited to have my son Adam collaborating with me! He and I were discussing our spiritual journeys on a trip to the mountains a while back, and during that discussion somehow this The Tower of Babel came up. While we both agree on the idea that we may be creating a new one through worldwide computer/internet technology we are sewn up very differently, and therefore will come at it with different perspectives. My bent is towards the Watchman on the Wall and Adam’s ismore drawn to being “the scientist in the lab of the mind.” I see things as much more black-and-white, and my command to receive and then relay what I hear from God simply and directly. Adam’s is to deep dive in to the why’s of what he hears, and to understand how that impacts us on a personal level. Throughout the series you will hear unique perspectives from each of us. Please understand this is not for the sake of point/counterpoint or debate, but rather a discussion from different perspectives to help you sort out what it means for you. Needless to say, this format may make each article somewhat lengthy, so bear with us. We hope it will be meaningful for you and will encourage you to seek the Lord as to what it holds for you personally!

From Adam:

Thanks, Dad, for the introduction and for the invitation to collaborate on this topic. I have enjoyed our conversations so far and I look forward to continuing the conversation online with you and your readers. I have caught myself thinking often about the story of the tower of babel over the past few months, even before you and I began discussing it. I am excited to offer whatever I can to the conversation.

As you alluded to earlier, I enjoy living life in pursuit of deep understanding. I love the process of encountering new thoughts, challenging ideas, experiences and environments. I enjoy digging through the sand in search of gold, new revelation which leads to understanding, right living and ultimately peace.

While I enjoy the peace which accompanies right thinking and living, more than anything, I love the moments when truth makes itself known to me in new ways in my life. For me, these spontaneous moments of fresh revelation are a rush like I experience in no other way. It is these moments that make the grueling and arduous pursuit of humility worth while in my life. I look forward to engaging this topic with you because I believe there may be something valuable buried inside.

We may be very different in our perspectives, black and white vs gray; bold contrast vs subtle nuance, but I appreciate each approach all the same. Often, it is the watchmen who draws our attention to symptoms which harm or hold us back as a society or individuals. Symptoms which, if examined, expose recurring and destructive patterns of thought, behavior and/or belief at their source. Destructive patters which Jesus intended to rid us of so we may live free and at peace with him, ourselves and one another. Patterns his spirit still desires and intends to liberate us from now; not just for “heaven”.

Without watchmen to make us aware, we may never set off in the pursuit of understanding. Without the pursuit of understanding we may never become illuminated to the areas of ourselves where we are being robbed daily of the peace available to us, the peace which is now our birthright. The peace for which Jesus suffered in hopes that we may one day attain. I find this process deeply meaningful, important and worth any cost.

Thank you again for your invitation to collaborate, for all the interesting conversations so far and for your willingness to shout from the walls, challenging us all to look deeper. Regardless of whether we are actually rebuilding the tower today or not, I find the parallels between our society and that of Babel to be significant, timely and highly relevant to say the least. I look forward to what comes from looking a little deeper with you.

In the interest of brevity, we will end this first article here and actually launch into the subject with the next, the first part of three more. We’re both looking forward to this new format and new collaboration! Shalom!

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