The Tower of Babel and Titanic: Technology-Driven Projects that were Doomed by Pride!
The Titanic was a technological wonder and a masterpiece of modern engineering, but the fate of this ship's expedition was doomed by pride and arrogance.
On April 10, 1912, this ship began its journey from Southampton, England, heading for New York. And at 882 feet long, it was the world's biggest and most luxurious ship ever constructed. The Titanic was built using the most advanced shipbuilding techniques and technology of that era. This ship was a symbol of how sophisticated and advanced in technology the world had become. Based on how great this ship seemed to be, some people reached the extreme of thinking that it was unsinkable.
Pride Always Comes Before a Fall!
The captain of the Titanic, Edward Smith, was blinded by his faith in shipbuilding technology, and it is alleged that he said, "I can't think of any major disaster that could happen to this vessel. Modern shipbuilding has gone beyond that."
It is also alleged that this ship's captain boasted arrogantly about the Titanic, saying, "Even God himself couldn't sink this ship." In this blasphemous statement, fallen man not only saw himself as the lord of the oceans, but also as greater than God himself!
Three weeks after the Titanic left Liverpool for New York, the ship hit an iceberg. And, despite the Titanic's sophisticated technology, it was inadequate to rescue this ship from this terrible accident, which is regarded as one of the worst disasters in history. That fateful day, the ship sank, killing over 1500 people on board. This journey was destroyed by pride.
I remember when the Titanic sank in 1912, it was the ship that was supposed to be unsinkable. The only thing it ever did was sink. When it took off from England, all kinds of passengers were aboard - millionaires, celebrities, people of moderate means, and poor folks down in the steerage. But a few hours later when they put the list in the Cunard office in New York, it carried only two categories - lost and saved. Grim tragedy had leveled all distinctions.
— Vance Havner
There are a lot of things we should learn from the construction of the Tower of Babel in Genesis 11 and the Titanic incident in 1912. One of these lessons is that we should never think that great human achievements are pleasing to God.
All Of Us Are Boasters!
But before pointing a finger of accusation at the boastful Titanic ship captain or to the arrogant boasters who were building the Tower of Babel, we ought to acknowledge that all of us are wicked boasters like them. In 1 Corinthians 1:18–21:16, we witness even the early church itself bragging about human wisdom. As he wrote to them about this problem, Paul didn't chastise the Corinthian church for boasting or glorying, but rather he blamed them for boasting and glorying in the wrong thing.
Do you deliberately boast about God's redeeming work and grace in sending His Son to the cross, or do you boast about your own skills and achievements?
Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, 24but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord.
— Jeremiah 9:23–24