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Nimrod – From Josephus

Quotes from the works of Josephus

“Now it was Nimrod who excited them to such an affront and contempt of God. He was the grandson of Ham, the son of Noah, a bold man, and of great strength of hand. He persuaded them not to ascribe to God as if it was through his means they were happy, but to believe that was their own courage which procured that happiness. He also gradually changed the government into tyranny, seeing no other way of turning men from the fear of God, but to bring them into a constant dependence upon his power. He also said he would be revenged on God, if he should have a mind to drown the world again; for that he would build a tower too high for the waters to be able to reach and that he would avenge himself on God for destroying their forefathers.”

“Now the multitude were very ready to follow the determination of Nimrod, and to esteem it a piece of cowardice to submit to God; and they built a tower, neither sparing any pains nor being in any degree negligent about the work; and, by reason of the multitude of hands employed in it grew very high sooner than anyone could expect; but the thickness of it was so great, and it was so strongly built, that thereby its great height seemed, upon the view, to be less that it really was. It was built of burnt brick cemented together with mortar, made of bitumen, that it might not be liable to admit water. When God saw that they acted so madly he did not resolve to destroy them utterly, since they were not growing wiser by the destruction of the former sinners; but he caused a tumult among them, by producing in them divers languages; and causing that, through the multitude of those languages, they should not be able to understand one another.”

“The place where in they built the tower is now called Babylon; because of the confusion of that language which they readily understood before; for the Hebrews mean by the word Babel, Confusion.”

“The Sibyl also makes mention of this tower, and of the confusion of the language, whin she says thus: ‘When all men were of one language, some of them built a high tower, as if they would thereby ascend up to heaven; but the gods sent storms of wind and overthrew the tower, and gave every on his peculiar language; and for this reason it was that the city was called Babylon'”.

“But as to the plain of Shinar, in the country of Babylonia, Hestiaeus mentions it when he says thus: ‘Such of the priests as were saved took the sacred vessels of Jupiter Enyalius, and came to Shinar of Babylon'”.

Quotes from: “Antiquities of the Jews” pp 79-80 (Vol II of Works of Josephus)

Note: Sibly was a prophetess in Greek legend.