New King James edition: The Tower of Babel
1 Now the whole earth had one language and one speech. 2 And it came to pass, as they journeyed from the east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar, and they dwelt there. 3 Then they said to one another, “Come, let us make bricks and bake them thoroughly.” They had brick for stone, and they had asphalt for mortar. 4 And they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top is in the heavens; let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth.”
5 But the LORD came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. 6 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. 7 Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech.” 8 So the LORD scattered them abroad from there over the face of all the earth, and they ceased building the city. 9 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.
I heard Rabi Daniel Lapin explain this passage in the most comprehensive way I have ever heard:
Tower of Babel: – King Nimrod (yes – that was his name) decided to join all groups of people – and make them all the same and equal. He succeeded in uniting all the tribes of the known world. He decided to build a central structure as his governing buildings – and because of his success – as a tribute to ‘reaching for the sky’ – all in honor of his accomplishments – not God’s.
Instead of using stone – (symbol of individuals) – he decided to use brick (symbol of – formed by man to be all the same). To bind the bricks he used mortar (symbol of unifying through material possessions – not through God).
This was the first attempt of socialism – the desire to make all people the same and equal. This was the first attempt of a man or men to place themselves on the same level as God.
This attempt is seen in our society today. If you ask yourself what binds our country and (people) together it is the material ‘things’ we have (mortar). Although now many people don’t know history or God’s words – we all know TV’s, company logo’s (Nikki, Harley Davidson, Cadillac as examples) and our unified desire to own possessions. That is what holds modern society together. We are no longer individuals (stones).
But just as God did in the bible – this was actually done through a person ABRAHAM – there are modern day examples that our structure – and some people’s desire to create utopia – is falling apart – an unrealistic, impossible dream.
Economies are collapsing, intrusive bills passing (an example of this would be USA’s new regulations for air travel – which includes seeing people naked and patting down your most private parts – all in the name of safety) and governments encroaching swiftly with their regulations and bills. If we continue to allow governments force us to conform for the ‘collective’ good – we will ‘collapse’ individuals. We will become bricks – instead of the stones God created – all bound together by our new god – materialism/money.
Throughout history – socialism has been tried – throughout history socialism has failed. We are stones – not bricks