Just a few reminders to help you keep your focus clearly on Christ.
The Tower of Babel narrative in Scripture isn’t about Nimrod, as if the only problem was who was in charge. Nor was it about his brand of religion as the driving force behind his grip on a unified human race. The issue was that grip itself, it was the sin of trying to bring all of fallen humanity together for any purpose at all. It is utterly impossible for fallen mankind to come up with a single global goal without poking God in the eye. Nothing mankind does without revelation is viable. This is the Curse of the Fall. The command at the Gate of Eden as the Lord drove the first humans away from the Tree of Life was to “spread out” and the inherent meaning is to exist without unity.
Any attempt at unity beyond a certain threshold is inherently evil. There are prescribed limits; the boundaries are intentionally soft, but anyone trying to gain God’s approval can work it out for their own context. There are multiple keys to divine approval on this. Some of them are: developing a single cultural and racial identity (not in the facts but in the perception), compelling all immigrants to conform, an eastern feudal government, and a tribal social structure. These are just the bare minimum. These are the fundamental assumptions underlying every Law Covenant, and they are central to the now applicable Covenant of Noah. That’s the message of the Tower of Babel; humans cannot possibly come up with anything better.
All of this is inherent in the gospel message. It was the foundation on which the teachings of Christ stood. Had Israel accepted Him as their Messiah, it would have been the basis on which His rule would stand. As it is, this now becomes the foundation of the any church that claims to obey the gospel.
A tribal social structure means living in your neighbor’s armpit in the social sense. It means your church is your closest kin and they know your private business, and you know theirs. It means you are there watching over them with a shepherd’s interest. But you never lead by force; you always lead by simply moving toward the next thing God says He wants for His glory. It requires a mystical orientation and a heart-led focus of human consciousness. It means knowing via the heart when to get involved and when to back off.
It means you never forget that accomplishments aren’t that important. It’s not that the church never tries to do anything, but that the core issue is building and maintenance of the covenant communion in faith. Nothing else really matters, so every project or endeavor has to be anchored on that. And we should never forget that the context is always shifting, so that the mission is always to meet God where He is working and calls to you. Never take seriously your understanding of wider strategic issues, because you you only know what God allows you to see.
So the only accomplishments and victories that you can notice are those internal to each individual member of the family. The entire reason God calls us together into family groupings is because that’s the proper atmosphere for conquering our individual demons. The covenant community is the essential element, not the goal itself. At the same time, it’s the ability to commune effectively that becomes a primary goal of each individual. It’s a big, time consuming project that only rarely gives thought to efficiency, but aims at bringing the moral fruit to maturity.
Finally, you need to understand that this image is what drives Creation itself. Creation is a member of the family, an ally who works with us toward this task of building a home for the soul to grow. This is what Creation itself longs to see. Everything in Creation stands ready to support this task of personal redemption within covenant communities. You have to bring the natural world into your communion as a member of the family. That means everyone must learn to take seriously the idea that nature speaks, that reality is a person, too. Everything around you is just a tool for His glory, and so are you.
This is what it means to follow Christ.