The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and the Wickedness of Mankind
Part 1
עץ הדאת טוב ורע והרעת בני האדם

 

The tree of the knowledge of good and evil is the basis for all the wickedness of mankind throughout all of human history until this present day.  It will continue to be the basis of wickedness in the future.  All rebellion against HASHEM proceeds from it.  The tree produces its own wisdom.  It produces its own knowledge which is derived from the five physical senses of man.  From this knowledge men through seductive reasonings build structures that appear to be beautiful, logical, and convincing. They are engrossing, fascinating, consuming.  They snare, devour, and damn human souls.  From these structures proceed false religions that are rooted and grounded in abominable idolatries and worship of false gods.  They form the warp and woof and the fabric of cultures, and civilizations, and nations.  Governments and traditions weave them and entrench them in societies.  Men fight wars with one another because of these structures.  These are called “ideologies”, and they dress these lies in the gorgeous apparel of specious and deceptive “truths.”  These “truths” are logically valid, but in reality they are spurious and deceptive falsehoods.  We will proceed to examine this fountainhead of wickedness and rebellion against the sovereign rule of G-d, and the establishment of His kingdom.

1.  ADAM

Adam originally had sweet fellowship with HASHEM.  He walked with HASHEM, and had sweet conversations with Him.  He was clothed with the presence and the glory of HASHEM, and he enjoyed hearing the voice of HASHEM.

When Adam sinned and transgressed the commandment of HASHEM by eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, the glory and the anointing of HASHEM THAT HAD CLOTHED him departed from him.  Suddenly Adam realized that he was naked.

Now when Adam heard the voice of ADONAI ELOHIM walking in the garden, instead of relishing the voice, HE WAS AFRAID.  HE RAN TO THE TREE OF THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL, AND HE HID HIMSELF INSIDE THE TREE.

And they heard the voice of the LORD G-D walking in the garden toward the cool of the day; and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD G-D INSIDE THE TREE of the garden.

וַיִּשְׁמְעוּ אֶת-קוֹל יְהוָה אֱלֹהִים, מִתְהַלֵּךְ בַּגָּן–לְרוּחַ הַיּוֹם; וַיִּתְחַבֵּא הָאָדָם וְאִשְׁתּוֹ, מִפְּנֵי יְהוָה אֱלֹהִים, בְּתוֹךְ, עֵץ הַגָּן

Genesis 3:8  בראשית ג:ח

Adonai Elohim called out to Adam: Aiyeicha אַיֶּכָּה which is to say: “Where are you?”

And the LORD God called unto the man, and said unto him: ‘Where are you?’

וַיִּקְרָא יְהוָה אֱלֹהִים אֶל-הָאָדָם; וַיֹּאמֶר לוֹ, אַיֶּכָּה

Genesis 3:9  בראשית ג:ט

This verse starts with ‘vayeekra וַיִּקְרָא’.  This word is the first word in the third book of the Torah תןרה. It is also the name of the third book of the Torah תורה.

The verse ends with the word Aiyeicha  אַיֶּכָּה which is the name of the book of Lamentations in the Tanach תנך.   The Prophet Jeremiah wrote this book as he wept profusely and uncontrollably with gut wrenching sorrow over the horrible destruction of Jerusalem and the glorious Temple, and the slaughter of G-D’s people.

Adonai Elohim did not call out this question to Adam because He did not know where Adam was hiding.  He called out the question to Adam because He wanted Adam to recognize where he was hiding—in the tree.  The question is full of sorrow, grief, and woe.

Adam does not answer the question of Adonai Elohim.  This shows that he is in rebellion.  Instead he answers WHY he is hiding.  He is already trying to defend and justify himself.

And he said: ‘I heard Your Voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.’

וַיֹּאמֶר, אֶת-קֹלְךָ שָׁמַעְתִּי בַּגָּן; וָאִירָא כִּי-עֵירֹם אָנֹכִי, וָאֵחָבֵא

Genesis 3:10  בראשית ג:י

The next questions that Adonai Elohim asks Adam are two questions that give Adam an opportunity to confess his sin to Adonai Elohim and to repent before Him,

And He said: ‘Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded you that you should not eat?’

וַיֹּאמֶר–מִי הִגִּיד לְךָ, כִּי עֵירֹם אָתָּה; הֲמִן-הָעֵץ, אֲשֶׁר צִוִּיתִיךָ לְבִלְתִּי אֲכָל-מִמֶּנּוּ—אָכָלְתָּ

Genesis 3:11  בראשית ג:י א

Adam now feels secure in his new found position inside of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  In the confidence of this security he refuses to repent.  From this position he defies and accuses Adonai Elohim.  The woman was a wonderful gift that Adonai Elohim had created for Adam out of His infinite love for Adam.  Instead of appreciating His gift, Adam hurls an accusation and impugns the holy character of Adonai Elohim.

And Adam said: ‘The woman whom YOU gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.’

וַיֹּאמֶר, הָאָדָם:  הָאִשָּׁה אֲשֶׁר נָתַתָּה עִמָּדִי, הִוא נָתְנָה-לִּי מִן-הָעֵץ וָאֹכֵל

Genesis 3:12  בראשית ג:יב

Now Adam is full of pride and self-righteousness.  He makes his sin the fault of Adonai Elohim.

Instead of taking responsibility for his own actions, he scapegoats the woman, and blames Adonai Elohim.

The foolishness of man perverts his way; and his heart frets against the LORD

 אִוֶּלֶת אָדָם, תְּסַלֵּף דַּרְכּוֹ;    וְעַל-יְהוָה, יִזְעַף לִבּוֹ

Proverbs 19:3  משלי יט:ג

Adam has now become a pompous fool, reveling in his iniquity, and refusing to repent.

Adam’s position, however, hiding in the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, did not protect him.  It did not prevent him from receiving the judgment for his sin.

The judgment was fruitless labor and seemingly endless toil. The earth האדמה from which he was taken, caused him to struggle by growing thorns and thistles.  Adam inherited trouble, toil, vexation, and vanity.  And the concluding judgment was that he would return to the dust from which he was formed: Death.  This judgment Adam passed on to his offspring:  the entire human race.

And to man He said, “Because you listened to your wife, and you ate from the tree from which I commanded you saying, ‘You shall not eat of it,’ cursed be the ground for your sake; with toil shall you eat of it all the days of your life.

And it will cause thorns and thistles to grow for you, and you shall eat the herbs of the field.

With the sweat of your face you shall eat bread, until you return to the ground, for you were taken from the ground, for dust you are, and to dust you will return.”

  וּלְאָדָם אָמַר, כִּי-שָׁמַעְתָּ לְקוֹל אִשְׁתֶּךָ, וַתֹּאכַל מִן-הָעֵץ, אֲשֶׁר צִוִּיתִיךָ לֵאמֹר לֹא תֹאכַל מִמֶּנּוּ–אֲרוּרָה הָאֲדָמָה, בַּעֲבוּרֶךָ, בְּעִצָּבוֹן תֹּאכְלֶנָּה, כֹּל יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ

 וְקוֹץ וְדַרְדַּר, תַּצְמִיחַ לָךְ; וְאָכַלְתָּ, אֶת-עֵשֶׂב הַשָּׂדֶה

 בְּזֵעַת אַפֶּיךָ, תֹּאכַל לֶחֶם, עַד שׁוּבְךָ אֶל-הָאֲדָמָה, כִּי מִמֶּנָּה לֻקָּחְתָּ:  כִּי-עָפָר אַתָּה, וְאֶל-עָפָר תָּשׁוּב

Genesis 3:17-19  בראשית ג:יז-יט

2.   THE ANTEDILUVIAN AGE

The Antediluvian Age, which is comprised of the 10 generations from Adam to Noah, begins and opens up with violence, treachery, and murder.  This Age also ends with violence, treacheries, and murders.

Cainקין    was Adam’s firstborn son.  Cain transgressed against HASHEM and did not obey Him.  As a result HASHEM refused his sacrifice. Cain was angry at HASHEM because he had toiled with the ground to produce the sacrifice; therefore he felt his sacrifice was justified.

His younger brother, Abel הבל, on the other hand, obeyed HASHEM, and his sacrifice was accepted by HASHEM.  Cain envied his brother Abel, who did not toil the ground, yet never the less, his sacrifice was accepted by HASHEM.

And in process of time it came to pass, in the end of days, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD.

And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And LORD had respect to Abel and accepted his offering

but He did not have respect to Cain, and He did not accept his offering.  And Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell.

וַיְהִי מִקֵּץ יָמִים וַיָּבֵא קַיִן מִפְּרִי הָאֲדָמָה מִנְחָה לַיהוָה

וְהֶבֶל הֵבִיא גַם־הוּא מִבְּכֹרוֹת צֹאנוֹ וּמֵחֶלְבֵהֶן

וַיִּשַׁע יְהוָה אֶל־הֶבֶל וְאֶל־מִנְחָתוֹ

וְאֶל־קַיִן וְאֶל־מִנְחָתוֹ לֹא שָׁעָה וַיִּחַר לְקַיִן מְאֹד וַיִּפְּלוּ פָּנָיו

Genesis 4:3-5     בראשית ד:ג-ה

HASHEM gave Cain an opportunity to repent by asking Cain a question, and then gave Cain a solution that even contained a promise and a blessing.  HASHEM also warns Cain about SIN.

And the LORD said to Cain: ‘Why are you filled with wrath? and why is your countenance fallen?

 If you do well, shall it not be lifted up? and if you do not do well, sin crouches at the door; but his desire shall be to you, and you shall rule over him..

וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה, אֶל-קָיִן:  לָמָּה חָרָה לָךְ, וְלָמָּה נָפְלוּ פָנֶיךָ

 הֲלוֹא אִם-תֵּיטִיב, שְׂאֵת, וְאִם לֹא תֵיטִיב, לַפֶּתַח חַטָּאת רֹבֵץ;

 וְאֵלֶיךָ תְּשׁוּקָתוֹ, וְאַתָּה תִּמְשָׁל-בּוֹ

Genesis 4:6-7       בראשית ד:ו-ז

But Cain followed in the footsteps of his father Adam.  He refused to repent.  Instead he chose the knowledge of evil.  He became consumed with envy for his brother Abel.  His wrath increased.  He thought about what he was going to do to him.  This was in spite of the promise that he had from HASHEM, that if he repented, and obeyed HASHEM, his sacrifice would be accepted, and he would rule over his brother.  Cain in his resentment and self-pity chose the other path.  By treachery, when his brother was not suspecting anything, he rose up against him in the field and murdered him.

And Cain spoke to Abel his brother, and it came to pass when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and slew him.

וַיֹּאמֶר קַיִן, אֶל-הֶבֶל אָחִיו; וַיְהִי בִּהְיוֹתָם בַּשָּׂדֶה, וַיָּקָם קַיִן אֶל-הֶבֶל אָחִיו וַיַּהַרְגֵהוּ

Genesis 4:8       בראשית ד:ח

As it is written in the Scriptures:

But if you have bitter envy and strife in your heart, glory not and lie not against the truth.

This wisdom is not a wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish.

For where jealousy and strife are, there is confusion

and every vile and evil deed.

וְאִם־קִנְאָה מָרָה וּמְרִיבָה בִּלְבַבְכֶם אַל־תִּתְהַלֲלוּ וְאַל־תְּשַׁקְּרוּ בָּאֱמֶת

לׂא זׂאת הַחָכְמָה הַיּׂרֶדֶת מִמָּעַל

כִּי אִם־חָכְמַת הַחֶלֶד וְהַיֵּצֶר וְהַשֵּׁדִים

כִּי־בִמְקוֹם קִנְאָה וּמְרִיבָה שָׁם מְהוּמָה וְכָל־מַעֲשֶׂה רָע

Now the stage was set for the rest of the future generations of the Antediluvian Age.

They were well ensconced in the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Cain was condemned to a life of wandering.

 But what did Cain and his offspring do?  They built cities.

And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bore Enoch; and he built a city, and called the name of the city after the name of his son Enoch.

 וַיֵּדַע קַיִן אֶת-אִשְׁתּוֹ, וַתַּהַר וַתֵּלֶד אֶת-חֲנוֹךְ; וַיְהִי, בֹּנֶה עִיר, וַיִּקְרָא שֵׁם הָעִיר, כְּשֵׁם בְּנוֹ חֲנוֹךְ

Genesis 4:17  בראשית ד:יז

There were 10 generations in the Antediluvian Age.  In each generation people lived to be of a great age.  The life span was between 800 and 970 years.  The average lifespan of a man or a woman was generally over 900 years.  During these long lifespans people accumulated vast amounts of knowledge.  They had huge storehouses of knowledge, information, and skill.

Civilization spread and developed at a breakneck pace.

They made huge advances in agriculture and the raising of cattle and domesticated animals.

 And unto Enoch was born Irad; and Irad begot Mehujael; and Mehujael begot Methushael; and Methushael begot Lamech.

And Lamech took unto him two wives; the name of one was Adah, and the name of the other Zillah.

And Adah bore Jabal; he was the father of such as dwell in tents and have cattle.

וַיִּוָּלֵד לַחֲנוֹךְ, אֶת-עִירָד, וְעִירָד, יָלַד אֶת-מְחוּיָאֵל; וּמְחִיָּיאֵל, יָלַד אֶת-מְתוּשָׁאֵל, וּמְתוּשָׁאֵל, יָלַד אֶת-לָמֶךְ

וַיִּקַּח-לוֹ לֶמֶךְ, שְׁתֵּי נָשִׁים:  שֵׁם הָאַחַת עָדָה, וְשֵׁם הַשֵּׁנִית צִלָּה

 וַתֵּלֶד עָדָה, אֶת-יָבָל:  הוּא הָיָה–אֲבִי, יֹשֵׁב אֹהֶל וּמִקְנֶה

Genesis 4:18-20  בראשית ד:יח-כ

They developed culture, music, and the arts.

And his brother’s name was Jubal; he was the father of all such as handle the harp and pipe. 

 וְשֵׁם אָחִיו, יוּבָל:  הוּא הָיָה—אֲבִי, כָּלתֹּפֵשׂ כִּנּוֹר וְעוּגָב

Genesis 4:21  בראשית ד:יח-כ

They developed science, and metallurgy,.

They made clever inventions, and weaponry.

And Zillah, she also bore Tubal-cain, the forger of every cutting instrument of brass and iron; and the sister of Tubal-cain was Naamah.

 וְצִלָּה גַם-הִוא, יָלְדָה אֶת-תּוּבַל קַיִן–לֹטֵשׁ, כָּלחֹרֵשׁ נְחֹשֶׁת וּבַרְזֶל; וַאֲחוֹת תּוּבַל-קַיִן, נַעֲמָה

Genesis 4:22  בראשית ד:יח-כב

The descendants of Cain filled the earth with great populations.  The scope of their accomplishments was seemingly endless.  They were filled with pride.  They did not consult with Adam their father.

They were ensnared in the tree of knowledge.  They reveled in the knowledge that their five senses gave to them.  They trusted in it and felt secure in it.  It was their fortress and their high tower.  They felt no need to seek after HASHEM and His wisdom.  They lived in the tree of knowledge and delighted in its fruit.

The Torah תורה says that they had strong and beautiful bodies.  They grew to great stature.  They could be anywhere from 14 to 20 feet tall.  They felt invincible.

They amassed great wealth and glory and fame.  They flattered each other.  They gave trophies and awards to each other for their accomplishments.  They congratulated each other in lavish ceremonies.

They magnified each other so that they became famous.  They were men and women of renown.

Their technological and cultural advances seemed to be endless.

And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them,

 that the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives, whomsoever they chose.

And there were giants (Nephilim) in the earth in those days, and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bore children to them; the same were the mighty men that were of old, the men of renown.

 וַיְהִי כִּי-הֵחֵל הָאָדָם, לָרֹב עַל-פְּנֵי הָאֲדָמָה; וּבָנוֹת יֻלְּדוּ לָהֶם

וַיִּרְאוּ בְנֵי-הָאֱלֹהִים אֶת-בְּנוֹת הָאָדָם, כִּי טֹבֹת הֵנָּה; וַיִּקְחוּ לָהֶם נָשִׁים, מִכֹּל אֲשֶׁר בָּחָרוּ

 הַנְּפִלִים הָיוּ בָאָרֶץ, בַּיָּמִים הָהֵם, וְגַם אַחֲרֵי-כֵן אֲשֶׁר יָבֹאוּ בְּנֵי הָאֱלֹהִים אֶל-בְּנוֹת הָאָדָם, וְיָלְדוּ לָהֶם:  הֵמָּה הַגִּבֹּרִים אֲשֶׁר מֵעוֹלָם, אַנְשֵׁי הַשֵּׁם

Genesis 6:1-2,4  בראשית ו:א-ב,ד

But the tree of the knowledge of good and evil also had another side to it.  It was not only the tree of the knowledge of good.  It was also the tree of the knowledge of evil.

The hearts of men and women were also filled with strife and envy.  They became fierce and implacable.

Their hearts were filled with lusts, covetousness, fornications, and adulteries.

They stole from each other and murdered each other.  They refused to forgive one another.  Their hearts were filled with plots of revenge.  They had evil thoughts continually.  The earth became filled with violence.

The way of Cain קין prevailed.

They fought among themselves and they murdered each other.  This increased and crescendoed until the entire earth was filled with violence.  They were filled with perversions and every sort of wickedness. Finally the violence and the wickedness were so great that the entire earth was corrupted, and HASHEM decided to destroy everything on earth with the flood המבול.

And the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

And the earth was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence.

And God saw the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted His way upon the earth.

 וַיַּרְא יְהוָה, כִּי רַבָּה רָעַת הָאָדָם בָּאָרֶץ, וְכָליֵצֶר מַחְשְׁבֹת לִבּוֹ רַק רַע כָּלהַיּוֹם

וַתִּשָּׁחֵת הָאָרֶץ לִפְנֵי הָאֱלֹהִים; וַתִּמָּלֵא הָאָרֶץ, חָמָס

וַיַּרְא אֱלֹהִים אֶת-הָאָרֶץ, וְהִנֵּה נִשְׁחָתָה:  כִּי-הִשְׁחִית כָּל-בָּשָׂר אֶת-דַּרְכּוֹ, עַל-הָאָרֶץ

Genesis 6:5,11-12  בראשית ו:ה,יא-יב

The tree of the knowledge of good and evil had corrupted the civilization, and had corrupted the entire earth with it.

Only one man, Noah נח feared G-d, and remained righteous.

HASHEM decided to cover the entire earth with a blanket of water to destroy the earth, and all its civilization with everyone in it, and to purge it of its wickedness.

And it repented the LORD that He had made man on the earth, and it grieved Him at His heart.

And the LORD said: ‘I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and creeping thing, and fowl of the air; for it repenteth Me that I have made them.’

But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.

וַיִּנָּחֶם יְהוָה, כִּי-עָשָׂה אֶת-הָאָדָם בָּאָרֶץ; וַיִּתְעַצֵּב, אֶל-לִבּוֹ

וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה, אֶמְחֶה אֶת-הָאָדָם אֲשֶׁר-בָּרָאתִי מֵעַל פְּנֵי הָאֲדָמָה, מֵאָדָם עַד-בְּהֵמָה, עַד-רֶמֶשׂ וְעַד-עוֹף הַשָּׁמָיִם:  כִּי נִחַמְתִּי, כִּי עֲשִׂיתִם

 וְנֹחַ, מָצָא חֵן בְּעֵינֵי יְהוָה

Genesis 6:6-8    בראשית ו:ו-ח

3.  THE AGE OF THE TOWER OF BABEL

After the Flood המבול HASHEM gave Noah a promise and the hope of righteousness.  But as the descendants of Noah began to multiply upon the earth, they began to function from within the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  They began to glory in the works of their own hands, and the knowledge that their five senses provided to them.

The ten generations from Noah to Abraham were corrupted by being in the tree of the knowledge of good and evil just as the ten generations of the Antediluvian Age from Adam to Noah had been corrupted by being in the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

They forgot the lesson of the Flood.  The new generations did not consult with Noah. Instead they became filled with the pride and the jubilation that the success of works of their own hands provided to them.  They idolized their accomplishments.

They built cities.  They found a leader who crowned them with their successes.  They succumbed to his flatteries and his subtle temptations.  They were seduced by their own lusts. They became enamored with idols, and began to worship them.  They left the towering elevations of Mt Ararat, and settled in the lowly plain of Shinar.  It was wide and spacious, and it was lush and comfortable.  It had mighty rivers.  It was fertile, and it had an abundance of water.  It was filled with luxuries.  It appealed to the lusts of the five senses.  The plain of Shinar was the perfect place to settle, and to indulge in the knowledge provided by the five senses.

And the whole earth was of one language and of one speech.

And it came to pass, as they journeyed east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar; and they dwelt there.

וַיְהִי כָל-הָאָרֶץ שָׂפָה אֶחָת, וּדְבָרִים אֲחָדִים

וַיְהִי, בְּנָסְעָם מִקֶּדֶם

 וַיִּמְצְאוּ בִקְעָה בְּאֶרֶץ שִׁנְעָר וַיֵּשְׁבוּ שָׁם

Genesis 11:1-2   בראשית יא:א-ב

 The plain of Shinar was the place where they could build great cities.  They could indulge in the pleasures of wealth, and it was easy to descend into the idolatries provided by the five senses.

As there were 10 generations in the Antediluvian Age, there were 10 generations from the time of the end of the Great Flood to the building of the Tower of Babel.  But these generations were shorter.  HASHEM shortened the average life span until it was only between 200 and 300 years.

(Actually Noah was still alive at the time of the judgment of HASHEM at the tower of Babel in Babylon.)

 The people chose Nimrod to be their leader.  Nimrod, the son of Cush, was the grandson of Ham, the second son of Noah’s three sons.

 And the sons of Ham: Cush, and Mizraim, and Put, and Canaan.

And Cush begot Nimrod; he began to be a mighty one in the earth.

וּבְנֵי חָם–כּוּשׁ וּמִצְרַיִם, וּפוּט וּכְנָעַן

וְכוּשׁ יָלַד אֶת-נִמְרֹד; הוּא הֵחֵל לִהְיוֹת גִּבֹּר בָּאָרֶץ

Genesis 10:6,8    בראשית י:ו,ח

Nimrod learned the ways of Cain.  He built cities.  He waxed mighty like his predecessors in the Antediluvian Age.

 He was a mighty hunter before the LORD; wherefore it is said: ‘Like Nimrod a mighty hunter before the LORD.’

And the beginning of his kingdom was Babel, and Erech, and Accad, and Calneh, in the land of Shinar.

Out of that land went forth Asshur, and built Nineveh, and Rehoboth-ir, and Calah

and Resen between Nineveh and Calah–the same is the great city.

 הוּא-הָיָה גִבֹּר-צַיִד, לִפְנֵי יְהוָה; עַל-כֵּן, יֵאָמַר, כְּנִמְרֹד גִּבּוֹר צַיִד, לִפְנֵי יְהוָה

 וַתְּהִי רֵאשִׁית מַמְלַכְתּוֹ בָּבֶל,

 וְאֶרֶךְ וְאַכַּד וְכַלְנֵה, בְּאֶרֶץ שִׁנְעָר

מִן-הָאָרֶץ הַהִוא, יָצָא אַשּׁוּר; וַיִּבֶן אֶת-נִינְוֵה, וְאֶת-רְחֹבֹת עִיר, וְאֶת-כָּלַח

Genesis 10:9-12    בראשית י:ט-יב

Babylon בבל was the first city that Nimrod established.  And he made it his capital.

The people increased in knowledge, and they became filled with the sense of power and prestige.

The Age had begun with drunkenness, and it ended with drunkenness.  It began with the drunkenness of Noah, who was drunk with the wine of grapes, and it ended with his descendants being drunk with the wine of power, prestige, and pleasure. They became consumed with the lusts of the flesh and debauchery.  This debauchery led them into the worship of idols and the works of their own hands.  They lost their fear of G-d, and they worshipped devils.  They were filled with the pride of their knowledge, and they thought that they could attain anything.  They reached into the heavens, and imagined that they could attain even to the throne of G-d.  They became filled with sorcery and witchcraft.  They worshipped the stars and the heavenly bodies, the sun, the moon.  They studied their orbits and their movements.  They used them to prognosticate their future, and to describe their personal character traits.  They made this the culture of their society, and they were caught up in their ambitions.

They made Nimrod their high priest.  He decked himself with gorgeous apparel.  He crowned himself with jewels and precious stones.  He was quite magnificent.  He was revered and adored by the people.

But Nimrod became tyrannical.  He devised crucifixion as a painful and a horrible death for those who challenged his power.   He used the horror of crucifixion to consolidate his power.  No one dared to challenge him or to oppose his dictates.

He began to demand that the people worship him as a god.  His wife , Semiramis , was his beautiful queen.  He created and he established religion.

All religion is based on logic.  It appeals to men’s minds because it it logical.  All its precepts and arguments are derived from one another in a logical manner.  Its theorems and it corollaries can be extracted from each other in a logical sequence.  They form a beautiful and a harmonious structure.  Therefore it is a powerful citadel.  It convinces the person who examines it that it is TRUE.  The man or woman therefore believes its dictates.  However the basic premise that the structure is founded upon is a lie.  Therefore the whole structure becomes false and is a deception.  The man or the woman who is deceived by the religion does not look at the premise.  They only look at the beautiful structure.  Therefore they continue to believe the lie.  They are entrapped and deceived by it.  This is the essence of the strongholds of all false religions.  They are powerful and they hold many prisoners.

Nimrod used this technique to deceive the people.  The people were convinced by the lies of idolatry.  When Nimrod was killed, Semiramus said that Nimrod was reincarnated into the body of their baby.  People were awed by the sensual beauty of Semiramus.  They called her the “Queen of Heaven.”  They continued to build the tower.  They were so entrapped by the emptiness created by the lies and the vanities of their idols, that they defied HASHEM.  They thought that they could achieve anything.  By this knowledge they thought that nothing was impossible for them.  They reveled in their unity, and how that they were all in one mind and in one accord.  But HASHEM saw the intentions of their hearts.

The LORD knows the thoughts of man, that they are vanity.

יְהוָה–יֹדֵעַ מַחְשְׁבוֹת אָדָם:    כִּי-הֵמָּה הָבֶל

Psalms 94:11   תהלים צד:יא

The sons of Adam בני האדם take counsel, and they think that their devices will endure.  But they are mistaken.  In their pride given to them by the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, they do not acknowledge or even consider the counsel of HASHEM.  They do not realize that all their efforts are futile.

The LORD brings the counsel of the nations to naught; He makes the thoughts  and devices of the peoples to be of no effect.

The counsel of the LORD stands for ever, the thoughts of His heart to all generations.

יְהוָה הֵפִיר עֲצַת-גּוֹיִם

    הֵנִיא מַחְשְׁבוֹת עַמִּים

 עֲצַת יְהוָה, לְעוֹלָם תַּעֲמֹד

   מַחְשְׁבוֹת לִבּוֹ, לְדֹר וָדֹר

Psalms 33:10-11  תהלים לג:י-יא

The sons of Adam בני האדם are not aware of HASHEM.  In their ignorance and their rebellion, they do not realize that He is watching everything they do.  They do not realize that He has total control.

The LORD looks from heaven; He beholds all the sons of men;

From the place of His habitation He looks intently upon them, and He observes all the inhabitants of the earth;

He fashions their hearts alike, He considers and understands all their doings and all their works.

מִשָּׁמַיִם, הִבִּיט יְהוָה;    רָאָה אֶת-כָּל-בְּנֵי הָאָדָם

מִמְּכוֹן-שִׁבְתּוֹ הִשְׁגִּיחַ–    אֶל כָּל-יֹשְׁבֵי הָאָרֶץ

הַיֹּצֵר יַחַד לִבָּם

    הַמֵּבִין אֶל-כָּל-מַעֲשֵׂיהֶם.

Psalms 33:13-15  תהלים לג:יג-טו

The people were oblivious of HASHEM.  They pursued their celestial religion.  Nothing was impossible for them to accomplish.  There was no fortress of difficulty that they could not break.  They could breach the walls of any difficulty and conquer it.  They were intoxicated and inebriated by their knowledge.  They were imbued with their wisdom.  They continued to build the tower.  HASHEM saw it all. 

And they said: ‘Come, let us build us a city, and a tower, with its top in heaven, and let us make us a name; lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.

And the LORD came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men built.

And the LORD said: ‘Behold, they are one people, and they have all one language; and this is what they begin to do; and now nothing will be withholden from them, which they imagine and purpose to do.

וַיֹּאמְרוּ הָבָה נִבְנֶה-לָּנוּ עִיר, וּמִגְדָּל וְרֹאשׁוֹ בַשָּׁמַיִם, וְנַעֲשֶׂה-לָּנוּ שֵׁם:  פֶּן-נָפוּץ עַל-פְּנֵי כָל-הָאָרֶץ

 וַיֵּרֶד יְהוָה לִרְאֹת אֶת-הָעִיר וְאֶת-הַמִּגְדָּל, אֲשֶׁר בָּנוּ בְּנֵי הָאָדָם

 וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה, הֵן עַם אֶחָד וְשָׂפָה אַחַת לְכֻלָּם, וְזֶה הַחִלָּם לַעֲשׂוֹת וְעַתָּה לֹאיִבָּצֵר מֵהֶם כֹּל אֲשֶׁר יָזְמוּ לַעֲשׂוֹת

Genesis 11:4-6   בראשית יא:ד-ו

HASHEM saw that the people were firmly ensconced in the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  And He saw the evil fruit that it had produced, and what great evil it was going to produce.  So He judged it in His great mercy.

The judgments of the LORD are true,

they are righteous altogether;

מִשְׁפְּטֵי-יְהוָה אֱמֶת

 צָדְקוּ יַחְדָּו

Psalms 19:10   תהלים יט:י

So HASHEM executed judgment upon Babel and upon the tower that they were constructing in the city.

 Come, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech.’

So the LORD scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth; and they left off to build the city.

Therefore was the name of it called Babel; because the LORD did there confound the language of all the earth; and from thence did the LORD scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth.

הָבָה, נֵרְדָה, וְנָבְלָה שָׁם, שְׂפָתָם–אֲשֶׁר לֹא יִשְׁמְעוּ, אִישׁ שְׂפַת רֵעֵהוּ

וַיָּפֶץ יְהוָה אֹתָם מִשָּׁם, עַל-פְּנֵי כָל-הָאָרֶץ; וַיַּחְדְּלוּ, לִבְנֹת הָעִיר

  עַל-כֵּן קָרָא שְׁמָהּ, בָּבֶל, כִּי-שָׁם בָּלַל יְהוָה שְׂפַת כָּל-הָאָרֶץ

  וּמִשָּׁם הֱפִיצָם יְהוָה עַל-פְּנֵי כָּל-הָאָרֶץ

Genesis 11:7-9   בראשית יא: ז-ט

This dispersion and scattering was not random.  HASHEM had each family speak the same language, even though the language was different from the language of other families.  So all the members of a family spoke the same language, and they were grouped into nations by the family and their language that they spoke.  These nations developed defined borders and distinct identities in the places where they had been scattered over the face of the whole earth.

The sons of Japheth: Gomer, and Magog, and Madai, and Javan, and Tubal, and Meshech, and Tiras.

And the sons of Gomer: Ashkenaz, and Riphath, and Togarmah.

And the sons of Javan: Elishah, and Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim.

 Of these were the isles of the nations divided in their lands, every one after his tongue, after their families, in their nations.

These are the sons of Ham, after their families, after their tongues, in their lands, in their nations.

These are the sons of Shem, after their families, after their tongues, in their lands, after their nations.

בְּנֵי יֶפֶת–גֹּמֶר וּמָגוֹג, וּמָדַי וְיָוָן וְתֻבָל; וּמֶשֶׁךְ, וְתִירָס

וּבְנֵי, גֹּמֶר–אַשְׁכְּנַז וְרִיפַת, וְתֹגַרְמָה

וּבְנֵי יָוָן, אֱלִישָׁה וְתַרְשִׁישׁ, כִּתִּים, וְדֹדָנִים

מֵאֵלֶּה נִפְרְדוּ אִיֵּי הַגּוֹיִם, בְּאַרְצֹתָם, אִישׁ, לִלְשֹׁנוֹלְמִשְׁפְּחֹתָם, בְּגוֹיֵהֶם

אֵלֶּה בְנֵי-חָם, לְמִשְׁפְּחֹתָם לִלְשֹׁנֹתָם, בְּאַרְצֹתָם, בְּגוֹיֵהֶם

אֵלֶּה בְנֵי-שֵׁם, לְמִשְׁפְּחֹתָם לִלְשֹׁנֹתָם, בְּאַרְצֹתָם, לְגוֹיֵהֶם

Genesis 10:2-5,20,31   בראשית י:ב-ה,כ,לא

Also HASHEM divided the land mass into separate continents, most of which were separated by great bodies of water.  This further divided the families of the earth, and accentuated their separation.

 And unto Eber were born two sons; the name of the one was Peleg; for in his days was the earth divided; and his brother’s name was Joktan.

 וּלְעֵבֶר יֻלַּד שְׁנֵי בָנִים:  שֵׁם הָאֶחָד פֶּלֶג, כִּי בְיָמָיו נִפְלְגָה הָאָרֶץ, וְשֵׁם אָחִיו, יָקְטָן

Genesis 10:25   בראשית י:כה

Also the life span of the sons of men במ האדם was shortened significantly.

But although the people were scattered and divided into diverse nations over the face of the earth, they took with them the knowledge of Babel.  They took with them the religion of Babel.  They took with them the wisdom of Babel.  They took with them the idolatry of Babel.

As their diverse cultures developed, they were infused with the corruption from the fruit of the the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.