In this series we will discover that this desire for fame is not a Godly one; that we must desire to use all of our talents exclusively for God’s glory and not for our own. It is very important to add that this does not mean that we should become sloppy and irresponsible. This does not mean that we throw out doing things with great excellence either. We should always do our very best and we should always play to win. However, we must aggressively refuse to take any glory. As people look at us, they should see us pointing at God and not pointing at ourselves.
In the book of Genesis we see the first of many things, but many times we ignore, or we are unable to see, what the Bible really has to say about the first famous person in the history of humanity. Genesis 10:8-10 gives us the first window to this very important Biblical character:
“8 Cush begot Nimrod; he began to be a mighty one on the earth. 9 He was a mighty hunter before the Lord; therefore it is said, “Like Nimrod the mighty hunter before the Lord.” 10 And the beginning of his kingdom was Babel, Erech, Accad, and Calneh, in the land of Shinar.” NKJV
If we look at these verses without engaging in a deep study of the meaning we will, like many, miss their profound significance.
Who was Nimrod? The Bible tells us that he was becoming a mighty one on the known earth at the time. The Bible also tells us that Nimrod was a mighty hunter before the Lord and that he was the founder of several cities. Basically, Nimrod was a very famous guy! But was Nimrod a Godly man or an Evil one?
The name Nimrod essentially means “The rebel.” Nimrod was a rebel before God. That rebelliousness is clearly seen as we look at the very first city he built… “Babel” which later became Babylon. In Genesis 11:1-4 we are able to see this powerful story:
“Now the whole earth had one language and one speech. 2 And it came to pass, as they journeyed from the east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar, and they dwelt there. 3 Then they said to one another, “Come, let us make bricks and bake them thoroughly.” They had brick for stone, and they had asphalt for mortar. 4 And they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top is in the heavens; let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth.” NKJV
In these verses we see four very important points:
They went to build a city for themselves: No mention, acknowledgment or desire to honor God. No doubt that Nimrod was the leader of this movement as the Bible points out in Genesis Ten that he was the founder of this city.
They wanted to be as high as God: This is in following with the spirit of Satan when he rebelled against God in heaven.
They wanted to make a name for themselves: This is indeed the desire to be famous, the desire to take God’s glory.
They wanted to stay in one place against God’s commandment to fill the earth: The Bible tells us that one of the motives for the building of the city was that they did not want to be “…scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth.” This was a direct rebellion against God’s command. God told Noah in Genesis 9:1 “So God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them: “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth.” NKJV
So how did God react to this new movement on the earth led by Nimrod (The Rebel)?
Is it wrong to desire to be famous? In our society it is commonly acceptable to be known and loved by the many. Who, in his or her right mind, wants to be unknown?
Responsible parents are taught to make sure that they react with great pride every time their children bring in an “A” from school. In the playground our children look forward for ways to impress us. Being accepted and praised for what we do is something that gives us a good feeling.
As we grow up in school we see that it is the great athlete or the one with an extraordinary popular talent who gets all the praise, who gets the most beautiful girls and the respect and admiration of others. So we crave that, we envy that fame and we want to be like them. Many will find their own ways to be famous and win the acceptance of others; many others will imitate others and do whatever it takes looking for the same fame and acceptance.
But the question still stands, is it wrong to desire to be famous?