This map shows the land of Shinar where the Tower of Babel was
and the directions the people of Noah's sons traveled in! After the flood, God
told Noah and his family to go out and fill the entire Earth with people.
Eventually, some of them disobeyed God and decided to stay in one place and
build a tall tower to try and reach the skies. Because of their disobedience,
God changed their languages to confuse them, making it impossible to continue
building the tower.
After the languages were mixed up, the sons of Shem went east
into Asia, the sons of Ham went south into Africa, and the sons of Japheth went
north into Europe. They called the land where the tower was built, Babylon, and
their leader was a great hunter named Nimrod.
The Bible doesn't say much more about Nimrod or the Tower of
Babel, but we know it was always God's plan for the whole Earth to be
repopulated and changing the languages led to the creation of many nations!.
The Tower of Babel for Big Kids
The Bible reveals that hundreds of years after the flood
the descendants of Noah began to repopulate. They all spoke the same language.
God had commanded them to be fruitful and multiply and fill the whole earth, but
instead they came from the East and gathered at the fertile Mesopotamian plain
called the Land of Shinar. They decided to build a mighty city and a tower there
at Shinar rebelling against the command of God. They imagined in their heart
that their tower would reach to heaven. The Lord saw their city and their tower
and he stopped them from building their city. The Bible says he confused their
language so that they could not understand one another's speech. So the Lord
scattered them from that place. Genesis 11:9 says: "Therefore its name was
called Babel, because there the LORD confused the language of all the earth.
From there, the LORD scattered them abroad on the surface of all the earth."
Tower of Babel
in Bible History.
The Land of Shinar. The ancient Land of Shinar was the
whole region between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers later known as Babylonia in
lower Mesopotamia. It was very fertile and was great for cultivating because of
the annual flooding. It was a very fruitful region similar to the lush Nile
River in Egypt.
The 3 Sons of Noah. According to the Bible, the
families of the sons of Noah represent all of the racial groups upon the earth.
Genesis 10 lists a total of 70 individual founders of nations or racial groups,
and divides them into three primary classifications: Shem, Ham, and Japheth. It
is interesting to note that Ethnologists generally agree that mankind divides
into three basic groups. Here is how the Bible divides them geographically:
Shem. ( Asia
- Central Nations) After the Tower of Babel Shem's descendants remained near
Shinar and also journeyed eastward. The descendants of Shem (Shemites) included
Jews, Assyrians, Syrians, Elamites, in north Euphrates Valley and its borders.
Ham. ( Africa
- South Nations) After the Tower of Babel Ham's descendants (Hamites) journeyed
southward. The names given seem to be South and Central Arabia, Egypt (Heb.
Mitzraim or Lands of Ham), East Mediterranean, and East Africa. There was at one
point a great migration to Egypt, but Canaan (son of Ham) settled in the land
later called Israel.
Japheth. ( Europe
- North Nations) After the Tower of Babel Japheth's descendants (Japhethites)
journeyed northward, and settled in the areas around the Black and Caspian Seas.
They became the great Caucasian races of Europe and Asia.
Chart of the Table of Nations for a detailed list.
Noah's Curse on Canaan. Noah's three sons Shem, Ham, and
Japheth and their wives repopulated
the earth and became the three great races of mankind. Ham was Noah's second
born son and
shortly after the flood he sinned against God by disrespecting his father,
Noah (Genesis 9). Noah cursed Ham's son, Canaan, the reason is not clear but we
know that the descendants of Canaan would lose their land to the Israelites. Then
God spoke through Noah again and prophesied about his three sons, Shem, Ham, and
Japheth and also that the Messiah would come through Shem's family, and
Japheth's family would share in that salvation.
Map of the Table of Nations for a map and list of their descendants.
The Tower of Babel and Ancient Ziggurats. There is no
way of knowing the exact details about the Tower of Babel, there has been much
speculation. The Bible does not even mention that the tower's name was Babel,
but the city itself was called Babel. One thing that is interesting is that most
of the ancient ziggurats that were lined up along the Tigris and Euphrates
rivers were actually step pyramids with seven stages, each step smaller than the
one below it with the base about 300 feet in each direction. At the top was not
a temple but the holiest place, a meeting place, and actually they called it a
mountaintop where they would meet with their gods. The ziggurats also had seven
colors, one of the seven colors of the rainbow on each step. Why the seven
colors? The only explanation could be that there was a memory of the rainbow
when God had originally spoke to Noah at the mountaintop.
Nimrod the Mighty Hunter. There was one man named
Nimrod mentioned in Genesis 10:9-11 who became the King over everyone, he was a
fierce hunter and a powerful man. the Bible says he built his kingdom at Babel,
and other cities in the land of Shinar. The details are not clear concerning
Nimrod and the Tower of Babel, but one thing is certain is that he was the
greatest ruler to come from the land of Shinar in the earliest of times. All of
the kings of that region were also mighty hunters, and they have been many
cities excavated revealing on their limestone reliefs various kings going on
hunts to capture lions in hand-to-hand combat.
Babel. The Bible mentions that after God confused their
language into many languages the city was then called Babel, which means
confusion. In the ancient Akkadian language "Babel" meant "the gate of God." In
the Old Testament the Land of Shinar and Babylon are mentioned as the same
The study of the Tower of Babel is very important in the study of the
Bible, let's pray:
Dear Jesus, we thank you and praise you for your Word. You
revealed throughout your the Bible that if we seek after you and trust in you
that you will be with us and lead us and guide us. Help us Lord to trust in you
because you know everything, and you have a great plan for us. We trust you Lord
and we thank you. In Jesus name? Amen!
The Tower of Babel for Kids
Map of the Tower of Babel for Bible Study
Kid's Bible Maps
The Geography of the Bible
© Bible History Online ( http://www.bible-history.com)