1At that time the whole world spoke just one language and used words with the same meaning. 2As they moved east they discovered a plain in the land of Shinar so they settled there.
3They said to one another, “Come on, let's make some bricks and bake them with fire.” (They used brick instead of stone, and tar instead of cement).#11:3. This was because in the Babylonian plain there was no stone to use for buildings. 4Then they said, “Now let's build a city for ourselves with a tower whose top reaches the heavens. That way we'll gain a great reputation and we won't end up being scattered all over the world.”
5But the Lord came down to take a look at the city and the tower that the people were building. 6The Lord said, “Look! These people are united and they all speak one language. If this is what they can do now when they're just getting started, nothing will be impossible for them when they all put their minds to it! 7We need to go down and mix up their language and make it confused so they won't be able to understand what they're saying to one other.”
8The Lord sent them away from there and scattered them all over the world, and they gave up building the city. 9That's why it was called Babel,#11:9. Babel sounds like the Hebrew word for “confuse.” because the Lord made the language of the world confused.
10The following is the genealogy of Shem. When Shem was 100, he had Arphaxad. This was two years after the flood. 11Shem lived another 500 years after Arphaxad was born and had other sons and daughters.
12When Arphaxad was 35, he had Shelah. 13Arphaxad lived another 403 years after Shelah was born and had other sons and daughters.
14When Shelah was 30, he had Eber. 15Shelah lived another 403 years after Eber was born and had other sons and daughters.
16When Eber was 34, he had Peleg. 17Eber lived another 430 years after Peleg was born and had other sons and daughters.
18When Peleg was 30, he had Reu. 19Peleg lived another 209 years after Reu was born and had other sons and daughters.
20When Reu was 32, he had Serug. 21Reu lived another 207 years after Serug was born and had other sons and daughters.
22When Serug was 30, he had Nahor. 23Serug lived another 200 years after Nahor was born and had other sons and daughters.
24When Nahor was 29, he had Terah. 25Nahor lived another 119 years after Terah was born and had other sons and daughters.
26When Terah was 70, he had Abram, Nahor, and Haran.#11:26. Once again (see note on 5:32) these sons are not listed in birth order. Abram is listed first because of his importance.
27The following is the genealogy of Terah. Terah was the father of Abram, Nahor, and Haran. Haran was the father of Lot. 28However, Haran died while his father, Terah, was still alive, in Ur of the Chaldeans, the land of his birth. 29Abram and Nahor both got married. Abram's wife was named Sarai, and Nahor's wife was named Milcah. (She was the daughter of Haran, who was the father of both Milcah and Iscah). 30Sarai wasn't able to become pregnant and so had no children.
31Terah took his son Abram, his grandson Lot, (who was the son of Haran), his daughter-in-law Sarai, (the wife of his son Abram), and left Ur of the Chaldeans to move to the land of Canaan. They got as far as Haran and settled there. 32Terah lived for 205 years and died in Haran.