A Daily Genesis

Genesis 11:6-27

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[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 11:6 . . and Yhvh said: If, as one people with one language for all, this is how they have begun to act, then nothing that they may propose to do will be out of their reach.[/B]

I don't think Yhvh objected to the people's unity per se. I mean, after all; it's Christ's wish that his church be unified (John 17:1-26). I think what He objected to was the direction that humanity's unity was taking; and it was no doubt similar to the direction depicted below.

"Why do the nations conspire and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against Yhvh and against His anointed. Let us break their chains-- they say --and throw off their fetters." (Ps 2:1-3)

To whom was Yhvh speaking when He spoke those words? Well; there's been a lot of theory and speculation in that regard. Apparently Yhvh has associates and companions; which we might label courtiers and/or bureaucrats. They're the competent behind-the scenes "gophers" that keep government business running smoothly. I think that God rather enjoys delegating a great deal of His business to trusted underlings rather than doing it all Himself.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 11:7 . . Let us, then, go down and confound their speech there, so that they shall not understand one another's speech.
"let us" is the language of Gen 1:26 when God created man. Exactly who accompanied Yhvh on this mission isn't stated; but it's difficult to imagine Him traveling solo without an entourage of some sort. (cf. Gen 28:12 and Matt 25:31)

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 11:8 . .Thus the Lord scattered them from there over the face of the whole earth; and they stopped building the city.[/B]

The language barrier was only a temporary delay because later on the city of Babylon was eventually built. But at this point in time, the world had no choice. It was just impossible to continue. Incidentally; the entire world has never again been unified in a singular endeavor like it was on that tower.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 11:9 . .That is why it was called Babel, because there the Lord confounded the speech of the whole earth; and from there the Lord scattered them over the face of the whole earth.[/B]

In time, men did branch out and colonize the whole planet. But barely anything is said in the Bible about the world in the years between Babel and Abraham. On the pages of scripture, it seems but a brief interlude, but in reality, it's truly a millenniums-wide quantum leap when taking into consideration the ice ages and regions that today are now deserts (Sahara; et al) which were once pluvial with abundant water resources and arable soil able to support developing civilizations.

Relative to the grand scale of time; Abraham was practically a modern man though he lived something like 4,000 years ago. But 4,000 years is merely a tick-tock on the earth's geological clock that's been ticking for something like 4[B].[/B]5 billion years. If we let 4[B].[/B]5 billion years represent 24 hours, then 4,000 years is about equal to 8/100th second.

According to the January 2015 issue of National Geographic Magazine, human artifacts as old as 100,000 years have been discovered in a cave located on the southern tip of Africa-- geologically, that many years is barely 2 seconds.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 11:10a . .This is the line of Shem.[/B]

Well; that's pretty much about it for the other brothers. From now on, the Bible will direct its focus mainly upon Shem's line. But not all. Just specific ones that are connected to Abraham's covenant; and ultimately to Messiah.

Noah was a pretty simple kind of guy. He probably tore apart the ark for its wood and built a home, and barns, and whittled fence posts and split rails to corral his livestock. The rest of the ark's lumber he could distribute to his sons and grandchildren for their own ranches after setting aside enough firewood for many years to come.

He more than likely stayed pretty close to where the ark went aground and remained behind when the others migrated out west. After all, if Noah could raise food right where he was, plus his grapes, then why move away? He'd seen it all anyway and lived the adventure of a lifetime.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 11:10b . . Shem was 100 years old when he begot Arpachshad, two years after the Flood.[/B]

That would make Shem about 97 years old when the flood began.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 11:11 . . After the birth of Arpachshad, Shem lived 500 years and begot sons and daughters.[/B]

Each of the patriarchs probably had at least as many daughters as well as sons even though girls' names are rarely listed in the record.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 11:12-25 . .When Arpachshad had lived 35 years, he begot Shelah. After the birth of Shelah, Arpachshad lived 403 years and begot sons and daughters . .When Nahor had lived 29 years, he begot Terah. After the birth of Terah, Nahor lived 119 years and begot sons and daughters.[/B]

Included in the genealogy of Gen 11:12-25 was a man named Eber. His name carries on to this day in a people well known as Hebrews; for the Old Testament word for Hebrew is [I]'Ibriy[/I] (ib-ree'); which means an Eberite; viz: a descendant of Eber.

Prior, it was common for people to live nine hundred years. But at this point in the Bible, the human life span is beginning to shrink rapidly.

Noah lived 950 years (about the same as his antediluvian forebears), but Shem lived only 600. It became even worse by the time of Nahor; who only lived to 148.

Today, even the healthiest among us begins to decline as early as our mid thirties; with an average life expectancy of not even 80.This problem has baffled scientists for years and no one seems to know yet just why our body cells age and deteriorate so fast. Whoever solves that problem will get very rich from it, that's for sure.

[B][COLOR=#ff0000]†.[/COLOR] Gen 11:26-27 . .When Terah had lived 70 years, he begot Abram, Nahor, and Haran. Now this is the line of Terah: Terah begot Abram, Nahor, and Haran; and Haran begot Lot.[/B]

By the time of Terah, Shem's line had slipped away and no longer worshipped Yhvh in spite of their solid spiritual heritage.

"Then Joshua said to all the people: Thus said the Lord, the God of Israel; "In olden times, your forefathers-- Terah, father of Abraham and father of Nahor --lived beyond the Euphrates and worshiped other gods." (Josh 24:2-3)

Because their dad worshipped other gods, the two brothers, Abram and Nahor, grew up as idolaters until Noah's god stepped in and broke the chain: appearing to Abram, and instructing him to leave his relatives, and get out of Ur.

One has to wonder what happened with Terah. His grandfathers Shem and Noah actually came off the ark and saw the Flood for themselves but that was waaaaay back when. Time has a way of turning history into legend, and anon, into myths and folklore.

[B][SIZE=1]NOTE[/SIZE]:[/B] One of the problems associated with the credibility of the Flood is finding evidence for it; and a significant portion of that problem is related to the Flood's duration.

The actual downpour lasted a mere forty days; and the standing water was gone within a year's time; which just isn't enough time. It takes water millennia to erode permanent features in the earth's lithosphere. And on top of that, once the rain stopped, the Flood's waters were essentially static like a lake or a swimming pool. In order to cause erosion of any significance, water has to move; as a river or a stream, or as waves along the sea shore; not stand still.

When I was a kid, the presence of sea shells and fossils way up on the sides and tops of mountains was thought to be evidence of the Flood, but now we know that they got up there by tectonic forces rather than by the Flood.

You know it hasn't been all that long ago that people began putting some faith in continental drift. It's been barely a century since German meteorologist Alfred Wegner proposed that Earth's dry land had once been a single continent then gradually began separating. He was soundly mocked and dismissed by his contemporary scientific community. Not anymore they don't.

Now pretty near all the geological scientists are in agreement that the earth's prominent mountain ranges were produced by the grinding, colliding, buckling, and subduction of massive sections of the earth's crust.

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