Read Genesis 10
In today’s reading:
The descendants of Noah; Babel; the origin of languages; God’s calling and covenant with Abram; his trip to Canaan and Egypt
N imrod is the first king mentioned in the Bible: “And the beginning of his kingdom was Babel” (Genesis 10:10). Nimrod’s name means “rebel.” “This man was a mighty hunter before the Lord” (Genesis 10: 9). Then we read: “Cush begot Nimrod; he became mighty in the earth ” (I Chronicles 1:10).
With Nimrod as the leader, the people came together: “And they said, Come on, let’s build ourselves a city and a tower, the top of which reaches into heaven” (Genesis 11: 4). They also said: “Let’s make a name for ourselves, in case we are scattered over the face of all the earth.” The words “let’s make a name for ourselves” reveal the desire for power and dominance. The human heart seeks to make a powerful or famous name for itself, and has no desire to glorify God.
The “mighty” Nimrod established and reigned over the first world empire. His ambition to build a tower “whose top reaches to heaven” does not mean that he expected to reach the throne of Almighty God – his greatest desire was to make himself and his followers so “powerful” that they could reign over the entire world. Nimrod was a “hunter” – probably a “hunter” of men who supported his ambitions. The phrase “before Jehovah” means that this rebellious man followed his own ambitious plans in disobedience and defiance before God, who had commanded Adam, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply” (Genesis 1:28); and to Noah he also said:“Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth” (Genesis 9: 1).
Just as in the days of Nimrod, today there is a worldwide movement that wants to unite to control all the peoples and all the religions of the world, and thus make a world government and church. The only security we have to avoid being deceived in this disorderly world is in knowing the Word of God well. Only the Bible illuminates the actions of leaders in world affairs.
In a striking comparison to Abram, who symbolizes submission to God, Nimrod is a symbol of the person who seeks his own independence outside of God’s will. God’s call came to Abram and said, “Get out of your land. . . to the land that I will show you. . . . And all the families of the earth will be blessed in you. And Abram left. . . » (Genesis 12: 1-4).
God’s calling demands that we make a decision. Even the closest relationships of human loyalty and caring have to be severed when they conflict with our submission to Christ and what is written in His Word. “And he who does not take up his cross and follow me is not worthy of me” (Matthew 10:38).
Thought for today:Nothing is more important than obeying God’s Word.
Optional reading:Matthew 4
Verse of the week to learn by heart:Matthew 4: 4