|"The Tower of Babal" by Pieter Brugel the Elder|
In Primary, we are studying the account of the Jaradites. The lesson focused on having faith in Jesus Christ, but of course the kids related to the account of the building of the barges that would carry everyone across the ocean to the “choice land”, the America’s?
When I first read of the record of the Jaradites in the book of Ether in the Book of Mormon, I was surprised to know that these people had a link to the Biblical account of the building of the Tower of Babel and the resulting “confounding of the language of everyone”. I have heard this record preached and taught, but no one could really determine what led up to this building of the tower, and why was God so mad. Some people attributed this tower as an affront to God and his holy dwelling. You get the picture. The one statement that everyone could agree on was that man was inherently evil, and even after the total destruction of the earth during the time of Noah, you would think that these descendants of Noah would know better. Do we know any better?
Here’s the story:
Genesis 11: 1 – 9Verse 1: And the whole earth was of one language, and of one speech
1And the whole earth was of one language, and of one speech.
2And it came to pass, as they journeyed from the east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar; and they dwelt there.
3And they said one to another, Go to, let us make brick, and burn them thoroughly. And they had brick for stone, and slime had they for mortar.
4And 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.
5 The LORD came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men built.
6And 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.
7Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech.
8So the LORD scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off building the city.
9Therefore 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.
Moses 5:55 And thus the works of darkness began to prevail among all the sons of men.Check out verse 1, two words “one language, and of one speech. Aren’t they the same? Nay they are not. Why is language important to God in the context of this scripture, and subsequently in the context of our lives right now?
“Speech is the motor act of articulation, producing sound, whereas language is the knowledge/use of a symbol system to communicate”
So everyone was reasonably intelligent, even educated and could talk and converse with one another in the language that everyone understood. There was only one language that had been spoken in and taught since Adam. This language had been taught to Adam who taught it to his kids and so forth. What was so special about this language? It is language to converse with Heavenly Father.
Zephaniah 3:9 “For then I will restore to the peoples a pure language, which they all may call on the name of the LORD, to serve Him with one accord.The language is now corrupted, and perverted. Now the language is used to persuade people to sin, to transgress the laws of God.
Moses 6: 49 Behold Satan hath come among the children of men, and tempt them to worship him; and men have become carnal, sensual, and devilish, and are shut out from the presence of God.Verse 4: 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
Isaiah 24:6 The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant.Verse 6: 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.
Hugh Nibley (Gospel Doctrine)
They gave away the rites of the temple, and they perverted them. The whole thing is a rite of perversion. They had all the same things, but they perverted them and claimed that they were being holy, that they had the priesthood, and that they had the covenants. This was their great crime, of course, that they had perverted the real thing. Fortunately, we are told they didn't have enough knowledge. Their knowledge was limited, so they weren't able to destroy everything. "They knew not the mind of God," as we are told in this book. So their system was not the system God gave Adam
GENESIS 6:5 Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.Verse 7: Go to let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech.
Moses 5:56-57There is a pattern of events, the sons of men have not changed their behavior since the flood, and the resident evil as it were was a stowaway on the ark.
56And God cursed the earth with a sore curse, and was angry with the wicked, with all the sons of men whom he had made;
57For they would not hearken unto his voice, nor believe on his Only Begotten Son, even him whom he declared should come in the meridian of time, who was prepared from before the foundation of the world.
Verse 8: So the LORD scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off building the city.
10 The city of confusion is broken down, every house is shut up, and that no man may come in.
11 There is a crying for wine in the streets, all joy is darkened, the mirth of the land is gone.
12 The city is left in desolation and the gate is smitten with destruction.
Hosea 4:6 My people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge, because thou has rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee. That thou shall be no priest to me, seeing thou has forgotten the law of thy God I will also forget thy children.Who are the righteous few? There are no names of prophets or priests given in this record. Was there someone who was called of God, who tried to persuade the people to turn away from their sins?
Omni 1:7 Wherefore the Lord did visit them in great judgment, nevertheless he did spare the righteous that they should not perish, but did deliver them out of the hands of their enemies.
Amos 3:6-8It took a long time for me to realize that the brother of Jared was a prophet, I thought that he was the only person in Jared’s family who kept his covenants, and of course he did. I wondered why Jared just didn’t pray himself.
6 If a trumpet is blown in a city, will not the people be afraid? If there is calamity in a city, will not the LORD have done it?
7 Surely the Lord GOD does nothing, unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets.
8 A lion has roared! Who will not fear? The Lord GOD has spoken! Who can but prophesy?
ETHER 1:34-40I love this record, but is there a happy ending, nope not until Jesus comes back. There are warning for our time
34 And the brother of Jared being a large and mighty man, and a man highly favored of the Lord, Jared, his brother, said unto him: Cry unto the Lord, that he will not confound us that we may not understand our words.
35 And it came to pass that the brother of Jared did cry unto the Lord, and the Lord had compassion upon Jared; therefore he did not confound the language of Jared; and Jared and his brother were not confounded.
36 Then Jared said unto his brother: Cry again unto the Lord, and it may be that he will turn away his anger from them who are our friends, that he confound not their language.
37And it came to pass that the brother of Jared did cry unto the Lord, and the Lord had compassion upon their friends and their families also, that they were not confounded.
38And it came to pass that Jared spoke again unto his brother, saying: Go and inquire of the Lord whether he will drive us out of the land, and if he will drive us out of the land, cry unto him whither we shall go. And who knows but the Lord will carry us forth into a land which is choice above all the earth? And if it so be, let us be faithful unto the Lord, that we may receive it for our inheritance.
39And it came to pass that the brother of Jared did cry unto the Lord according to that which had been spoken by the mouth of Jared.
40And it came to pass that the Lord did hear the brother of Jared, and had compassion upon him……….
Verse 9 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.
Ether 2:8-11Are we there yet? The Lord has decreed three times in this record, each with emphasis. Does this apply to us? Yep it does. Who shall stand in his presence, who shall abide in his coming?
8And he had sworn in his wrath unto the brother of Jared, that whoso should possess this land of promise, from that time henceforth and forever, should serve him, the true and only God, or they should be swept off when the fullness of his wrath should come upon them.
9And now, we can behold the decrees of God concerning this land, that it is a land of promise; and whatsoever nation shall possess it shall serve God, or they shall be swept off when the fullness of his wrath shall come upon them. And the fullness of his wrath cometh upon them when they are ripened in iniquity.
10For behold, this is a land which is choice above all other lands; wherefore he that doth possess it shall serve God or shall be swept off; for it is the everlasting decree of God. And it is not until the fullness of iniquity among the children of the land, that they are swept off.
11And this cometh unto you, O ye aGentiles, that ye may know the decrees of God—that ye may repent, and not continue in your iniquities until the fullness come, that ye may not bring down the fullness of the wrath of God upon you as the inhabitants of the land have hitherto done.
Psalms 15:2Speech and Language.
2 He that walketh uprightly and worketh righteousness and speaketh the truth in his heart.