Nathaniel Graham and Eugene Meltsner are debating Nathaniel's assertion that a united mankind can overcome anything. Eugene decides an adventure in the Imagination Station would give Nathaniel more information with which to decide if this is true or not. A skeptical Nathaniel agrees, and once inside they find themselves in ancient times, at the foot of the Tower of Babel, where they are immediately mistaken for slaves and put to work.
Joktali, an overseer, informs them that they are working on the temple of Marduk, one of many Babylonian gods. Joktali silences them when he hears them talk of the one true God, as it is forbidden to speak of any god but Marduk or any king but Nimrod.
That evening, Joktali leads Eugene and Nathaniel through the darkened streets to a secret meeting of those who want to speak freely of God. Even in Babel, a great and prosperous city, people are persecuted for their belief in God. They meet Eber, a 420-year-old man, and his granddaughter, Lillia, whose parents were killed by Nimrod's men because of their faith in God. As Eber is describing King Nimrod to them, men begin to break down the door. Nathaniel and Joktali escape through an alley passageway, but Eugene and Lillia are arrested. Eugene and Lillia are brought before King Nimrod and express their belief in the one true God and, as a result, are sent to the tower to be held for sacrifice.
Nathaniel is immediately ready to gather a group and storm the castle to free his friends, but Joktali insists he go to Eber instead. Eber explains to Nathaniel that people are persecuted for their faith in God because the Babylonians have become so sure of their power that they have forgotten that their power comes from God. A mysterious visitor arrives and asks to be taken into Babel and shown the evil that goes on there. Eber and Nathaniel take the visitor, whom they believe to be a messenger from God, to the city, and soon see the procession leading Eugene and Lillia.
Nathaniel and Joktali are prepared to raise a band of people and attack, but Eber urges them to allow the messenger to work instead. They watch in amazement as the people rise from paying homage to Marduk, speaking many different languages and unable to understand one another. Eugene, Nathaniel, Eber, and Lillia watch from afar as the smoke of war rises in Babylon, and Eugene explains to Nathaniel that this is because of man's fallen human nature.
- Who was the man who came down to see the city of Babel "with his own eyes?"
- Why did God divide up the people of the earth at the end?
- What reasons did Nathaniel give for saying that mankind was basically good?
- What did Eugene use the Imagination Station to show him?
Heard in episode
|Babylonian Overseer||Corey Burton|
|Babylonian Soldier||Phil Lollar|
|Eugene Meltsner||Will Ryan|
|Nathaniel Graham||Blake Ewing|
- Although this episode's main plot is based on the Biblical account of the Tower of Babel in the book of Genesis, much of the narrative and most of the characters are fictional, with great creative license being used to flesh out the story details.
- Much of the music heard in this episode is taken from #87 – #88: “Elijah” and #190 – #191: “Moses: The Passover”.
- The lead Babylonian soldier in this episode uses the line "Resistance is futile," which is the chant or call sign of the Borg, the most lethal enemy of the crew of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
- The last phrase in this episode, "say goodbye, Nathaniel," is identical to a phrase Al said to Sam in the TV series Quantum Leap.
- Eber, who is said to be the Eber mentioned in Genesis 11:14–17, is depicted as being older than Nimrod, and even says that he remembers Nimrod as a boy. However, such a statement is undeniably inconsistent with the genealogies given in Genesis 10, in which Nimrod is the grandson of Ham, while Eber is the great-grandson of Shem.
- Of course, given how long people were still having children in those days (well into their later years, especially if older men took younger wives, which was common) it is unlikely, but not beyond the realm of possibility, to have the member of a later generation be older than the member of an earlier generation.
QuotesNathaniel Graham: Can't we continue our debate like two adults?
Eugene Meltsner: We could, but we're one adult short.
Nathaniel Graham: How droll.
Nathaniel Graham: Be careful with that! You almost hit me!
Babylonian Overseer: Almost? I must be losing my touch.
Babylonian Soldier: Where does this door lead?
Eugene Meltsner: It depends on which side you enter.
Eugene Meltsner: And with all due respect to this happy reunion, I believe we should get out of the city before this confusion becomes truly chaotic.
Nathaniel Graham: Meaning?
Eugene Meltsner: Meaning it's only a matter of time before this mob becomes violent.
Nathaniel Graham: Meaning?
Eugene Meltsner: Meaning, let's get out of here!