Sunday, January 30, 2011

Genesis

Genesis continues exploring the end result of free will not used to love God with Cain and Abel.  Cain, who could choose to do the right thing, instead kills his brother.  No matter how badly we want the answer to "Am I my brother's keeper?" to be "no," it usually turns out to be "yes."  Humanity uses its free will to oppose God and love so much, He wipes out everybody but Noah and his family.

I read somewhere that you can't actually tell the whole story and consider it a cute children's story.  They make blankets with the animals and everybody remembers the two by two thing, but it kind of leaves out the people who die by drowning.  Not a pleasant way to go.

We don't stop sinning then, though.  We have Ham seeing the "nakedness of his father," which could be literal or could be alluding to sleeping with his mom.  Either way, it didn't go over well, and his son Canann was cursed.  Next up, society then tries to build a tower whose top might reach into Heaven.  This pride led God to confuse their speech so they would stop.

There's an interesting concept at work here.  God is using discipline to persuade us to do the right thing.  These examples are for us to use in this way, but at the time they were also things God was actively doing to convince His people to stay in line.

Gen 11:1-9  And the whole earth was of one language, and of one speech.  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. And they said one to another, Go to, let us make brick, and burn them throughly. And they had brick for stone, and slime had they for morter. And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth. And the LORD came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded.  And the LORD said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.  Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech.  So the LORD scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off to build the city.  Therefore is the name of it called Babel; because the LORD did there confound the language of all the earth: and from thence did the LORD scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth. 

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