Chapter 28: The People Of The Plain
According to Josephus, Nimrod was a great leader of the people of Shinar after the flood. 1 Laurence Gardner states the word Shinar resonates with a strong sense of antediluvian déjà vu, for “Shinar” was an (little understood) alternative name for Sumer. 2
One begins to wonder whether or not the desire of Nimrod and his people was to only migrate away from Noah, as a first bold step in recolonizing the planet. Was there was an unexplained, early schism among the deluge survivors, with Nimrod and his followers exiting to recreate the outlawed antediluvian society of Sumer? Whatever the inspiration, the people of Shinar were remembered as very courageous for first venturing out from the mountains and down to the plains, where Shinar/Sumer was located.
Remember, less than seventy years before, there had been a worldwide flood, the ark came to rest at the top of the mountains of Ararat (Gen. 8:4). From there, the survivors and their children watched as the flood waters slowly receded, revealing the lowlands over a long period of time. The safety of the mountaintops would have been imbedded into their consciousness, branding any thought of leaving the high ground a mark of lunacy, for fear of another great flood.
According to Porter, humanity appears in Genesis at this time as a small, homogenous group that travels cautiously from the mountains and to the east, to the Plain of Shinar. 3 Josephus explained that when the migration from the mountains took place, the people decided not to spread out and separate. 4 Did they believe their survival over nature was more secure through virtue of sheer numbers, or was it due to a fear of the unknown? Even more importantly, could the early pioneers of the plain have been afraid of another civilization that was terrible in war? Josephus noted that after the flood, God instructed the descendants of Noah to go forth and to recolonize the planet, but the people refused out of fear of oppression. 5 This is logical if the pioneers of the plain feared the Nephilim, wandering Aryans, and violent day six races. Clearly, whatever the rationale, the people of Shinar made a conscious decision that their early survival depended upon their remaining one people.