Repeatedly, we see that mankind is a morally sinful race that does not know how to govern itself. Man has proven that he is a helpless race which is in desperate need of a Saviour.
The first great trial began in the Garden of Eden when our first parents repudiated the "image of God" and in judgment God drove them out of the Garden. Genesis 5 records the early history of mankind's growth from Adam to Noah when men lived long lives. We learn that Enoch walked with God, and was no more, because God took him. It would seem that this was God's ultimate plan that, when man became spiritually mature, he would then attain to a higher level of community with God.
The second great trial after Adam, ended with a worldwide flood in judgment of a world that was under trial at that time. After Adam the earth had become so corrupt that it grieved God's heart that he had even made man. God could only find one righteous man by the name of Noah. The saving account of Noah and his family was God's first act of deliverance from a universal judgment which destroyed all life on earth by the purifying waters of judgment.
Genesis chapter 6:1-4 records an interesting account concerning the sons of God (referring to the angels) having relations and offspring with the daughters of men. The flood account ends with a purified earth and begins with a new start for man. Noah in gratitude built an altar to the Lord. The altar always points us in the direction of the cross. Hebrews 11:7 tells us that Noah sacrificed "by faith", looking to the cross.
- The flood account again proves that man cannot govern himself;
- It again proves man's failure and his sin coming under God's righteous judgment;
- It again proves that man needs a divine Saviour.
The fourth overshadowing theme in the Bible after God, Man, and Sin is the concept of Salvation. Despite man's sinful behavior, a holy God cannot tolerate sin and continues to prove that He is a merciful and loving God, who offers mankind a way of escape from His impending judgment.
Throughout the Bible God continually describes himself as the "God of Salvation". Christ was given the human name Jesus from Yeshua, meaning "The Lord our Salvation", with the first great promise of redemption being made in Genesis 3:15 which mentions two seeds: the seed of Satan and the seed of the woman. Satan's seed would bruise the heel of the seed of the woman, but the seed of the woman would crush Satan's head.
Genesis 3:21 showed God's way of dealing with Adam's sin by way of the very first animal sacrifice. Cain is representative of the natural man. He knew what kind of sacrifice was acceptable to God, but replaced it with what he felt was an alternative. Like all men Cain tried to approach God on his own terms, and represented man's continued failure by doing it man's way.
After the universal flood, God made an everlasting covenant to never again destroy the earth with a flood, and God set the rainbow as a sign of the everlasting covenant. In addition, God also made these promises:
- God promised never again to interrupt the seasons;
- God gave man animal food, saying: "Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you" (Genesis 9:3);
- God put His governmental law into the world.
God then blessed Noah and his sons saying: "Be fruitful and increase in number; multiply on the earth and increase upon it." (Genesis 9:7) Even though Noah had experienced the delivering power of God, he still failed to control himself and got drunk and brought shame on his own household.
Only a few hundred years after Noah, mankind tried to build a political confederacy under Nimrod, at the Tower of Babel. The reason that this account is important is that in Babel, we find the roots of every other religious system present in the world today. Genesis 10:8-10 and 11:1-9 records the account of Nimrod.
The name Nimrod means "rebel". Genesis 10:9 tells us that Nimrod was a mighty hunter before the Lord. It uses the word "mighty" three times referring to his power. The Syriac calls him a warlike giant. The word TSAYID which we render 'hunter' signifies prey and as applied in scripture means "preying on men" as in oppression, persecution and tyranny, and he was the first to build "a kingdom on the face of the earth". He was the King of Babel whose genealogy can be traced back to Cush who was a descendant of Ham upon whom rested the curse.
In the same patriarchal age as Melchizedek, Nimrod established the city of Babylon that gave its name to the prototype of the kingdom of Satan, which is the antithesis of Salem, which Melchizedek established after the pattern of Enoch. His aim was to build a world-wide confederacy in defiance to the will of God who had told the people "to scatter abroad over the face of the earth".
What we see in this account is early man's attempt to build a one world empire, under a one world ruler. Nimrod is a type of "the lawless one" who will be revealed in the end times, who will attempt to build a political confederacy, and a world-wide empire in defiance of God. He is a prototype of Antichrist who will form a great godless federation of people during the 70th week of Daniel to build a revived Roman Empire.
Just as Nimrod is referred to as "mighty", so will the Antichrist work with all kinds of "lying signs and wonders". Both Nimrod and the Antichrist are a counterfeit seeking to be worshipped as God, and in both cases God must come to destroy their counterfeit kingdoms.
In the end times there will also be a counterfeit religious system which is described in Revelation 17:5 as a woman dressed in purple and scarlet sitting on a scarlet beast. The woman is covered with blasphemous names and has seven heads and ten horns with a title written on her forehead: "MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF PROSTITUTES AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH." (Revelation 17:5)
The coming "lawless one" will unify the apostate church under a worldwide religious system. Revelation 17:6 records this religious system as being "drunk with the blood of the saints, and with the martyrs of Jesus."
Everything about Babel is a counterfeit. Even the materials used at Babel were counterfeit. Genesis 11:3 tells us that they used brick instead of stone, and tar instead of mortar. In judgment God confused their language and scattered them over the whole earth. Babel is our modern day Iraq. Babel means "gate of God", but in English it has become a synonym for "confusion".
Today man is no longer on trial. Throughout history he has proven himself guilty and will one day have to stand face to face before the Governor of the whole earth and give an account.
Since the time of Adam, the world has known no peace. Man has proven time over time that he cannot govern himself. God's offer to rule with Him is to everyone who will call upon the name of Jesus.
He is the true Prince of Peace and the only hope for the world today!