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Archive for March 1st, 2016

Genesis 11:  Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be dispersed over the face of the whole earth.”

The Babel builders sought on the plain of Shinar absolute and eternal security.  How?  Spiritually, by making a name for themselves and physically, by building the world’s first skyscraper.  This is still the lust of the Old Adam because he turned his back on the Lord. 

Years ago, I preached on the tower of Babel and as an example of “making a name for ourselves”, I used Trump Towers, named after it’s builder Donald Trump.  At the time, in Virginia, the response to my illustration was from a couple of members: “Who’s Donald Trump?”  We can not say that any longer. 

Genesis 11: 4 has become a commonplace tag on the lust for security:  I’ll make a name for myself, even to the point of crime.  This contrasts sharply with the next chapter in Genesis, verse 2, “And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing.”  The Lord’s Word came to Abram as sheer promise and gift without any asking on Abram’s part.  “Gifts are given to be received, not to be repaid. They thereby establish and define relationships”(Mark A. Seifrid).  The Lord graced Abram and thus He established and defined the relationship.  Abraham could never repay the gift of walking with the Lord in his journey.  When presidents, prime ministers, tyrants, dictators are forgotten, the name of Abraham is remembered on account of his descendent according to the flesh: Jesus Christ.

We are easily awed by the rich and famous and all their works and ways. If we did not want what they have, then the lottery would not exist. Remember:  the rich and famous exact from the ‘gift’ of their largesse more than you and I could ever give.  It is never a gift.It’s the devil’s deal and his deal is always the art of the deal. The hold they have over us is our own fears, like the Babel builders: not to be scattered and supposedly  have in ourselves eternal security but it has never worked that way:  see the pharaohs of Egypt, the Caesars, the Hitlers, the Mussolinis and the like.  All dust but who we remember  is Abraham and his name is on no tower.  It is better to follow a presidential candidate who at least has a veneer of humility and  knows what he/she can not do as the President of this most powerful of all nations: offer eternal security in wealth and power. No skyscraper can ever touch  God and reach heaven, only the Lord who has touched us, the beloved and only-begotten Son of God.  Only the Lord does that by His Son Jesus Christ by sheer grace for the haughtiest of men, that is, for us all.

Let us pray…Almighty God,   our heavenly Father, Your mercies are new every morning;  and though we deserve only punishment, You receive us as Your children and provide for all our needs of body and soul.  Grant that we may heartily acknowledge Your merciful goodness, give thanks for all Your benefits, and serve You in willing obedience;  through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

 

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