1 Now the whole earth used the same language and the same words.
2 It came about as they journeyed east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there.
3 They said to one another, “Come, let us make bricks and burn them thoroughly.” And they used brick for stone, and they used tar for mortar.
4 They said, “Come, let us build for ourselves a city, and a tower whose top will reach into heaven, and let us make for ourselves a name, otherwise we will be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth.”
5 The Lord came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built.
6 The Lord said, “Behold, they are one people, and they all have the same language. And this is what they began to do, and now nothing which they purpose to do will be impossible for them.
7 Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, so that they will not understand one another’s speech.”
8 So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of the whole earth; and they stopped building the city.
9 Therefore its name was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of the whole earth; and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of the whole earth.

Mark Sayers describes the currently post-Christian climate in this way: “Post-Christianity is ultimately the project of the West to move beyond Christianity, whilst feasting upon its fruit. Thus it constantly offers us options and off ramps, in which we seemingly have what we enjoy about faith, but without the sacrifices and commitments. It does not demand that we become apostates; rather, that we reshape our faith to suit the contours of the day, and in the process offers us the promise of tangible freedoms and pleasures for doing so. It does not challenge our faith head-on in a kind of apologetics debate; rather, it uses soft power, offering a continual background hum of options and incentives which eat away at our commitments. We are offered the mirage that we can have community without commitment, faith without discipleship, the kingdom without the King.”[1]

It doesn’t take much observation in our world to see that this idea of people seeking to enjoy “the kingdom without the King” rings true. There seems to be the common sentiment that we can attain and enjoy the promises of the kingdom of God apart from God Himself. It may feel that this is a relatively recent way of thinking that has moved beyond a western culture previously believed to be shaped by biblical ideals. Yet, Genesis 11 shows that this is actually a very old way of thinking. The truth is that this is not a new set of ideas that someone had to dream up; they have been in the heart of mankind ever since the Fall.

One of the distinguishing aspects of following Christ is a rejection of this idea. Rather than seeking independence from God, we are called to depend on Him fully and continually. Indeed, this is a countercultural way of thinking. However, this way of thinking is not new—it has existed since sin entered the world.

• Where are you tempted to believe you can enjoy the things of God apart from God?

• Where do you need to seek repentance and further abide in Jesus?

• Confess the ways you have sought independence from God. Pray that He would draw you into greater dependence on Him.

[1] McKnight, Scot. "The Disappearing Church (with Mark Sayers)." Jesus Creed. March 05, 2016. Accessed March 12, 2019. https://www.patheos.com/blogs/jesuscreed/2016/03/05/the-disappearing-church-with-mark-sayers/.