Front Matter The Garden of Eden The First Great Crime The Flood The Tower of Babel Abraham Moves into Canaan Sodom and Gomorrah The Trial of Abraham's Faith Searching for a Wife for Isaac Isaac and Rebekah Esau Sells his Birthright Jacob Serves for Rachel Jacob Returns to Canaan Joseph is Sold into Egypt Pharaoh's Dream Joseph's Brethren Buy Corn Jacob Moves into Egypt The Early Life of Moses Egyptians Smitten with Plagues Egyptians Drowned in Red Sea The Lord Provides for Israel Plan to Build the Tabernacle The Golden Calf Wanderings of the Israelites Spying Out the Land of Canaan Punishing the Israelites Balaam is Made to Prophesy Border of the Promised Land Last Days of Moses Rahab Saves the Spies The Destruction of Jericho The Capture of Ai Joshua Conquers Canaan Gideon is Given a Sign Gideon Overcomes Midianites The Punishment of Abimelech Jephthah's Daughter The Young Samson Samson and the Philistines The Death of Samson Naomi and Ruth Ruth and Boaz The Young Samuel Philistines Capture the Ark Philistines Return the Ark Saul in Anointed King Jonathan and the Philistines The Disobedience of Saul Samuel Anoints David David and Goliath Saul is Jealous of David David and Jonathan The Madness of Saul David Spares the Life of Saul The Last Days of King Saul David Becomes King The Rebellion of Absalom The Death of Absalom Solomon Becomes King The Wisdom of Solomon Solomon Builds the Temple Queen of Sheba Visits Solomon Revolt of the Ten Tribes The Wickedness of Jeroboam Elijah Begins His Ministry Elijah Destroys the Prophets Elisha is Made a Prophet Death of Ahab Sickness of Ahaziah Last Days of Elijah Miracles of Elisha Naaman is Cured of Leprosy Flight of the Syrians Jehu is Appointed King The Story of Joash Last days of Elisha Destruction of Sennacherib Judah Led into Captivity Destruction of Jerusalem Daniel Interprets the Dream The Fiery Furnace Madness of Nebuchadnezzer Handwriting on the Wall Daniel in the Lion's Den Jonah Swallowed by a Fish Jonah Warns Nineveh Esther Becomes Queen The Vengeance of Haman Esther Saves Her People The Return from Captivity Nehemiah Rebuilds Jerusalem

Heroes of Israel - Lawton Evans

The Tower of Babel

After the flood Noah had many children and grandchildren, so that the earth was full of people again. So long a time had passed that nobody thought that God would ever punish the earth for any wickedness, and the people turned to their sins and for all we know the world was about as wicked as it was before the flood.

God had promised that he would not send another flood but that did not mean that he would not punish people for their evil deeds. He did it in those days and he does it in these days, in one way or in another. We may be sure that when any one does wrong or breaks God's law he is sure to find some punishment waiting for him.

Everybody spoke the same language at that time, and everybody understood what every one else was saying. In these days there are a great many different languages spoken, but at that time there was but one speech. A great body of these people journeyed from the east, and came to a plain in the land of Shinar, and dwelt there.

Then they said one to another: "Let us make brick and burn them thoroughly." So they began to make brick until they made a great many and piled them up in heaps.

"Let us build us a city and a tower whose top may reach unto heaven," they said. And they took the brick they had burned and began to build the tower. What they intended to do with this tower, or why they wished to build it at all, we do not know. At any rate it was not pleasing to God, and He came down to see the city and the tower which the people were building in the plains of Shinar.

A great many people were working on it. Some were carrying the brick, some were bringing the mortar, and others were laying the brick in order. The tower was getting higher and higher, and the workmen were boasting that before long the top of the tower would reach the heavens. And they were all speaking the same language, and they understood one another's speech.

The tower may have been nearly finished, or just begun, or even half done we do not know, when God came down to see it, but we imagine He saw them building a round tower with steps on the outside so that when it was completed the people could walk up to the top, and perhaps worship the idols that had already taken the place in their hearts of the true God. God was angry with the people for doing this, and said: "Let us go down, and confuse their language that they may not understand one another's speech."

All at once the people began to talk different languages. One man would say something but the man next to him would not understand a word of it. No one knew what the other one was saying, and when they all talked at once there was so much confusion that the people were astonished and did not know what had happened to them. Even to this day we often speak of a babel of voices, which means that when many persons are talking at one time in the same place, no one person can be understood.

The people stopped building their tower as God intended they should, and they even left off building their city, for what was the use of people living together unless they understood what one person was saying to another?

Those who had spoken the same language went to themselves and moved away from the others, so that before long all the people who had come to dwell in the plain of Shinar were scattered abroad upon the face of all the earth. In this way did God separate the people, and give them different languages to speak, and made them dwell in different parts of the earth.