The Tower of Babel

Listen to this story from the Old Testament, where people thought that they no longer needed to obey God.

Before You Listen

After you listen

Memory Verse

Let’s build a city with a tower that reaches to the sky!

Audio Icon   Genesis 11:4



In this story, sinful people try to build a tower up to heaven. Notice the three big reasons why these people wanted to build this big city and tower. First, they didn’t want to obey God’s command in Genesis 9:7. They wanted to do things in their own way and decided to stick together. Have you ever disobeyed God to do something your own way?

Second, they wanted to build the big city and tower so that they could reach into the heavens! People had sinned and had been separated from God. They decided that they could build a tower tall enough for them to reach God all by themselves. They thought they could go up and meet God without God’s help. Have you ever been too proud to ask for God’s help?

Third, Genesis 11:4 says, “They said to each other, ‘Come let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves and not be scattered over the face of the whole earth…’” They wanted to give all the glory to themselves! Have you ever wanted the credit for the blessings in your life instead of giving God the glory?

Today, these three big reasons still affect how we obey God’s commands. We need to be humble and turn back to God. Psalm 32:5 says, “Then I confessed my sins to you; I did not conceal my wrongdoings. I decided to confess them to you, and you forgave all my sins.”

Want to dig deeper and learn more about confessing sin? Check out Romans 10:9-10, James 4:7-10, and Mark 11:25.


Think about your own life and why you do the things you do. Jesus talked about this in one of his parables. Read The Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector in Luke 18:9-14. In this story both men were praying in the temple, but Jesus pointed out their reasons for praying were different and that these reasons were very clear in their prayers. The motivation for our actions shows up in the way we do things. The next time you pray, think about why you are saying the words that you do. Talk to God in a meaningful way.