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Are You Making a Name for Yourself?

Daily Reading: Genesis 10-11

Scripture Focus: Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be dispersed over the face of the whole earth.” (Genesis 11:4)

Devotional Thought: Genesis 11 gives the account of the Tower of Babel. At this point in history, there was only one language. Even though people were multiplying and spreading, they remained unified in their nationality and language. They were now attempting to attain security and sufficiency through their building project.

What may seem innocuous to us (what’s the harm in constructing a skyscraper?) was concerning to the Lord. He knew their hearts were no longer centered on him, but rather on their own fame and fortune. The intention of the tower was to “make a name” for themselves (v.4), sparing absolutely no thought for the glory of their Creator. God’s response was to take away their ability to work together by confusing their language, and therefore disperse them from the city and the tower.

I cannot help but be reminded of our own natures and the pride we take in self-sufficiency. We, too, strive to build ourselves up, to make a name for ourselves – whether it’s through our wealth, our reputation, our status, or even our standing before God. The reality is that we are all needy, dependent people who are completely reliant on God’s grace through His redemption. May we take to heart the words of Paul to the Galatians: “May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world,” (Gal. 6:14).

Prayer: Lord, we confess that we, too, are tempted to build a name for ourselves, giving little thought to your glory and your great name. Please help us to keep our focus on Jesus and on his kingdom. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: 4 Have they no knowledge, all the evildoers who eat up my people as they eat bread and do not call upon the Lord? 5 There they are in great terror, for God is with the generation of the righteous. 6 You would shame the plans of the poor, but the Lord is his refuge. 7 Oh, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion! When the Lord restores the fortunes of his people, let Jacob rejoice, let Israel be glad. (Psalm 14.4-7)

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