Babel and Abram, by Melissa Gibbs

Babel and Abram, Genesis 18-21:7

Thanks to a hot tip from a follower, I have a new resource in my arsenal! I went to www.answersingenesis.com and found some historical information on the Tower of Babel. I can't believe how much I am enjoying this! I am so thankful for archaeologists and ancient language specialists who are often inadvertently providing solid proofs for the historical validity of the Bible! A recent discovery of a Sumerian tablet is the first extra-Biblical source to corroborate that there was a time in antiquity when all the people of the world spoke one language. And the tower itself, seems likely to have been a ziggurat, which was common in the Mesopotamian region at that time. A ziggurat is a stepped pyramid, whose very top level represented "heaven" to the pagan cultures and actually housed a "god" on a throne. Our translation reads "...with a top that reaches into the sky", but others read "...that reaches into heaven", making it very consistent with the ideology of the ziggurat. So we have some evidence that there was one world language at some point and that is was a common pagan practice to build towers culminating in "heaven". God was certainly not threatened by their ability to build a big tower, but by the depravity of their prideful and self-reliant spirits. They were attempting to demonstrate that they could bypass God altogether. In His mercy, God did not destroy them, but destroyed their opportunity for sin. The grouping of these people, dispersed according to common language, was the beginning of the different races.

Next we meet Abram, the great-grandson of Noah. But I want to skip over him for the time being, as I found the story of Melchizedek far more fascinating. How can this guy be a priest of the Most High God? How does he know God? And if he's a priest, there must be other worshippers of God that he ministers to... how do they know God? God is working through Abram, as the father of the Jewish nation. Melchizedek is not a part of that story! This is my favorite thing about today's reading. Melchizedek showing up out of nowhere, and clearly representing a much larger group of people, is evidence that God is now and always has been working in ways that we don't see. Just as the story of the flood was passed down from Noah to all people groups that extended from him, so was the knowledge and reverence of God. That was perverted in some people, as evidenced by the tower of Babel, but genuine faith existed in others. Some that pop up from out of nowhere in Scripture and many more who we never read about. One of my resource books said "evidently God was also calling out a people for his own name from among the Gentiles, even though the text rarely pauses in it's pursuit of the promise-plan of God through the Hebrew nation, to reflect on this phenomenon". In other words, the Bible doesn't have room enough to detail all the ways that God is working. It focuses on the Hebrew nation as the backdrop for Jesus Christ. It's very exciting to me to think of the people we'll meet in Heaven and think...where did you come from?!

About Melissa Gibbs:

 

Melissa is the mother of four boys and the wife of her junior high sweetheart, JD.  He is the President of Joe Gibbs Racing and the son of NFL Hall of Fame coach Joe Gibbs.  JD and Melissa have been married 16 years and are actively involved with Young Life, Motor Racing Outreach, their church, and other ministries.  Their youngest son Taylor is nearing completion of a 3 year treatment protocol for leukemia, which has been a powerful faith walk for their family.  Since his diagnosis, Melissa has been called upon to share their family's testimony with many local churches. Much of her energy is now focused on a huge festival planned for mid May in celebration of Taylor's victory over leukemia and in effort to raise money and awareness for pediatric cancer.  If you'd like to check out what she's up to while not blogging, go to www.finishlinefestival.com.

 

Visit Melissa at http://chronologicalbiblein2010.blogspot.com/.

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