Were the Confusion of Languages at Babel a Curse or a Blessing in Disguise?

ImageSome people jokingly ask the question what language will be spoken in heaven. Is it English, Chinese, Hebrew or Aramaic? Humanity speaks about 7000 living languages on the earth today and throughout history this number increases dramatically (I’m pretty sure I would have a hard time understanding an Englishman from the 13th Century). The Bible tells us this confusion of languages came about due to the united effort of humanity to oppose God by building the tower of Babel in Genesis 11. God confused the language of man and humanity was dispersed across the face of the earth.

The division of humanity into language groups must have felt like a curse and still often does today. But the confusion of languages was actually not a curse, it was actually a divine mercy, its initial purpose was to disperse humanity that they would fulfill their mandate to fill the earth, but the ultimate aim is even more glorious.

What seemed initially to be a bad and painful judgment of God ultimately will work for thegood of all humanity and the glory of God. Heaven (contrary to some belief) will not be a homogenous group of peoples. We will not all be made Jews, speaking Hebrew. Every nation, people group, every family, every dialect and language will be there. God delights inbringing diverse people, gifts, skills and languages together to make something beautifully and lovingly united for His glory – this is what the new heavens and the new earth will feel like. We still speak different languages, but will be united in one song – what a glorious picture and an encouragement to go learn another language

About Jono Hall

Disciple of Jesus, Husband and Father, Intercessory Missionary, Senior Leader at International House of Prayer and Teacher at IHOPU
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