Bible Studies
"LET US BUILD A TOWER..." PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jim Jordal   
Thursday, 10 August 2017


By Jim Jordal

“They said, "Come, let's build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top reaches to the sky, and let's make ourselves a name, lest we be scattered abroad on the surface of the whole earth." Yahweh came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men built. Yahweh said, "Behold, they are one people, and they have all one language, and this is what they begin to do. Now nothing will be withheld from them, which they intend to do.”                            Gen. 11:2-6 WEB

You may think that hubris, or outrageous arrogance according to Professor J. Rufus Fears, whom I quote from time to time, is only practiced during modern times. But Scripture as well as ancient archaeology and anthropology prove that it is as old as human kind, who have always conspired and attempted to rise above their humble beginnings to become like God.

Here is an example of great human arrogance from the Book of Genesis. The Scofield Reference Bible dates this account at 2247 BCE, or 1757 years after the Creation dated 4004 BCE. Whether you believe Dr. Schofield makes little difference, as does whether you believe the account to be humanly created. What matters is that it sets forth in clear terms the age-old human propensity to “stretch the envelope” of learning into the realm of the gods.

Today’s medical innovators seem to act as if there is nothing out of reach for their new discoveries and improved applications of old ideas. They skirt happily on the fringes of being able to create life---just like God! Now through miraculous gene-splicing therapy they are able to alter the very building blocks of humanity, removing disease-causing and handicap-creating genes even during gestation. Many now speak of “designer children,” as if that were a laudable goal instead of the height of hubris. They also envision the ability of being able to remove sometimes-harmful human traits like violence, selfishness, hatred, arrogance, and what have you; never seeming to realize that their efforts have been known by God ever since the Garden of Eden, as the passages above indicate.

 In the technological realm things are similar. Developers race to create faster and more powerful applications upon which they build vast productive and financial empires on the nature of Microsoft and Amazon. These advances are all seen as potential enhancements to the human race, but some more fearful commentators now view these developments as questionable at best. Their thinking is that humanity itself is threatened because humans will come to have smaller value than machines and software. Some go so far as to say that AI may soon supersede human knowledge and wisdom and may learn to “think” like humans. All this hardly mentions the reality that millions of jobs will very soon be replaced by machines. Apologists claim that these lost jobs will be replaced by new jobs building these machines, but neglect the truth that most of these new jobs will require education more advanced than what the average high school graduate can master.

But it’s in the realm of finance and money that human arrogance reaches new depths of unconcern for rank and file people. The present mass transfer of wealth from the common people to the top one percent has not been seen since the days of John D. Rockefeller in oil, Andrew Carnegie in steel, and J. P. Morgan in banking, during the Gilded Age from 1865 to 1900. But today we are rapidly eclipsing their wealth and power, not because of the inventive ingenuity of the techno-whizzes, but because our political and financial systems have been deliberately engineered to create this disaster and to keep in place against all odds.

It’s too bad that these inventions and technological breakthroughs can’t be used solely for good rather than ill, but that seems impossible under present governmental and economic values. They could be instruments for human and ecosystem transformation, but instead seem to fall under the control of those wishing to use them to make money and increase personal and national power.

But don’t forget to hang on, because God is still driving the bus.