Government Without God

The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands. (Acts 17:24)

Any king, any governing body, any family, or any institution that claims absolute power has rebelled against God. Since God has centralized all power within Himself, whenever people try to centralize power in themselves God intervenes to break up their attempts at autonomy and their “declarations of independence.” Just ask those who gathered at the Tower of Babel (see Genesis 11:1–9).

Their building project was doomed because their objective was wrong from the beginning: “Come, let us build for ourselves a city, and a tower whose top will reach into heaven . . . ” (v. 4). Instead of being given a name by God or wearing His name, those building the tower sought to make a name for themselves.

They sought to build a city (civilization), a tower (a religious system), and a name (independence) apart from God.

God looked down and saw what they were doing, and He didn’t like what He saw. God’s concern was that the people were trying to concentrate power in their hands without God. That was impossible for God to put up with, so He confused their language—the heart of their unity because it reflected their thinking, ideology, faith, and common confession—so that nobody could understand anyone else.

Mankind said, “Let’s make ourselves a name. Let’s concentrate power and build a one-world government that will rule the universe.”

God said, “Not in My universe, you won’t!” (see Psalms 2:1–4; 9:17–20; 33:9–12). The Tower of Babel is a prototype of any government that defies God and raises itself up in pride through the centralization of power. Any attempt to be autonomous from God will produce divine intervention and decentralization so that men will once again seek God (see Acts 17:24–28).