Search for the Tower of Babel

Babylon, Iraq the Mother of All Harlots.

One day God will remove the lead covering and the woman in the basket will be released. The city of Babylon will be rebuilt. I am wondering where her temple will be rebuilt. On or within the same area as where the Tower of Babel once stood, perhaps.

Zechariah 5:5-11

Then the angel who was speaking with me went out and said to me, “Lift up now your eyes and see what this is going forth.” 6 I said, “What is it?” And he said, “This is the ephah going forth.” Again he said, “This is their appearance in all the land 7 (and behold, a lead cover was lifted up); and this is a woman sitting inside the ephah.” 8 Then he said, “This is Wickedness!” And he threw her down into the middle of the ephah and cast the lead weight on its opening. 9 Then I lifted up my eyes and looked, and there two women were coming out with the wind in their wings; and they had wings like the wings of a stork, and they lifted up the ephah between the earth and the heavens. 10 I said to the angel who was speaking with me, “Where are they taking the ephah?” 11 Then he said to me, “To build a temple for her in the land of Shinar; and when it is prepared, she will be set there on her own pedestal.”

Nebuchadnezzar’s ‘Tower of Babel

Nebuchadnezzar ii is one of the most infamous kings of the Bible. He is particularly known for the destruction of Jerusalem in the sixth century b.c.e., and for his relationship with the Prophet Daniel. Proof of his exploits, as described in the Bible, has been evidenced heavily in archaeology: his role as king of Babylon, his defeat of the Egyptian army, his repeat sieges of Jerusalem, his installation of a puppet king (Zedekiah), and his final destruction of Jerusalem c. 586 b.c.e. There is even a possible reference to the Prophet Daniel’s three friends on one of Nebuchadnezzar’s clay tablets (see here for more information).

One thing Nebuchadnezzar isn’t generally known for, though, is a link with the tower of Babel—the attempt by Nimrod to build a tower up to heaven, dashed by God’s confounding of the languages (Genesis 11). A small handful of artifacts, however, help show an interesting link between Nebuchadnezzar and the biblical colossus.

I am Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon … my great lord has established me in strength, and has urged me to repair his buildings … the Tower of Babylon, I have made and finished … the Tower of Borsippa had been built by a former king. He had completed 42 [cubits?], but he did not finish its head; from the lapse of time it had become ruined … the rain and wet had penetrated into the brickwork; the casing of burnt brick had bulged out … Merodach, my great lord, inclined my heart to repair the building. I did not change its site, nor did I destroy its foundation platform; but, in a fortunate month, and upon an auspicious day, I undertook the rebuilding … I set my hand to build it up, and to finish its summit. As it had been in ancient times, so I built up its structure ….

Genesis 11:1-4
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.”

Daniel 4:29-31
Twelve months later he was walking on the roof of the royal palace of Babylon. 30 The king reflected and said, ‘Is this not Babylon the great, which I myself have built as a royal residence by the might of my power and for the glory of my majesty?’ 31 While the word was in the king’s mouth, a voice came from heaven, saying, ‘King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is declared: sovereignty has been removed from you,

… the most ancient monument of Babylon; I built and finished it … A former king built it—they reckon 42 ages [ago]—but he did not complete its head. Since a remote time, people had abandoned it without order expressing their words ….

There is another translation of this text that is even more direct in language. This one comes from Rawlinson’s contemporary Assyriologist, Julius Oppert. He translates a couple of lines slightly differently:

… the most ancient monument of Babylon; I built and finished it … A former king built it—they reckon 42 ages [ago]—but he did not complete its head. Since a remote time, people had abandoned it without order expressing their words ….

Genesis 11:5-9
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.

The tablet, belonging to King Nebuchadnezzar, dates to around 600 b.c.e., and includes a depiction of the king in the upper right-hand corner. In the left-hand corner of the tablet there is a diagram of a large, seven-storied tower; above it, a separate floor plan of the massive edifice. The lower part of the tablet contains an inscription, describing Nebuchadnezzar’s tower-building programs. The partial translation follows:

Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon am I: In order to complete [the towers] Etemenanki and Eurmeiminanki, I mobilized all countries everywhere … the base I filled in to make a high terrace. I built their structures with bitumen and baked brick throughout. I completed it raising its top to the heaven ….

The Etemenanki ziggurat (again, a likely parallel to the Borsippa tower) is also described by fifth-century b.c.e. historian Herodotus:

In the middle of [Babylon’s] precinct there was a tower of solid masonry … upon which was raised a second tower, and on that a third, and so on up to eight. The ascent to the top is on the outside, by a path which winds round all the towers. … On the topmost tower there is a spacious temple … There is no statue of any kind set up in the place, nor is the chamber occupied of nights by any one but a single native woman, who, as the Chaldeans, the priests of this god, affirm, is chosen for himself by the deity out of all the women of the land.

This woman appears to have been a representation of the ancient deified Inanna/Ishtar, herself associated in later traditions as the mother-wife of Nimrod.

Jeremiah 7:18
The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead dough to make cakes for the queen of heaven; and they pour out drink offerings to other gods in order to spite Me.

2 responses to “Search for the Tower of Babel”

  1. this cld be way off base
    but people are vying for the position of antichrist which they view as world ruler.
    Macron and his wife cld be mother and child
    just a thought
    cld be way off base but it does make me wonder


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