By Doug Bing, Washington Conference president

Do you know what a folly is?

The definition is “a costly ornamental building with no practical purpose.” There are a number of these that dot the landscape in England and Europe. They were built mainly for a show of wealth and little else. Some are quite ornate and others simple but built as tall as they could afford. You could climb up in them and survey the landscape around.

King Alfred’s tower in Britain is one of the taller ones and was built to commemorate a victory over the Danes in 878 AD. It has over one million bricks and stands 50 meters tall. This tower was damaged in World War II when an American plane crashed into the top of it. It has since been repaired, and it still stands as a monument of someone who wanted to show off their own greatness and self-sufficiency.

Men have been building towers for centuries.

Some for good reasons and others not so much. The tower of Babel is one such tower that the Bible speaks about where men got together and started to build. They were building as a way to protect themselves from the next flood.

They were building but not with the blessing or the dependence on God.

Nebuchadnezzar was another one who built some amazing things. The city was one of the wonders of the ancient world and was known for its hanging gardens. One day he was wandering around all that he had built, and he realized that the buildings were pretty impressive.

He then made a big mistake when he said,

Is not this the great Babylon I have built as the royal residence, by my mighty power and for the glory of my majesty.

Daniel 4:30

Immediately he was struck dumb and wandered the wilderness for 7 years until his kingdom was restored.

Nebuchadnezzar, the people that built the tower of Babel, and no doubt many others who are very talented in what they can do need simply to remember that all that we do should be done for the glory of God. We are to never lose our dependence of our creator God who gives such great talents and abilities to each of us. Let us never build follies. Instead let us each day build our total dependence on God in everything we do.