...the LORD scattered them abroad from there over the face of all the earth ... Therefore its name is called Babel, because there the LORD confused the language of all the earth; and from there the LORD scattered them abroad over the face of all the earth. (Genesis 11:8-9, NKJV)
The SCATTERING of the people from the land of Shinar throughout the world is pictured in s?n. It literally shows that ALL FLESH had to GO. The people would gather according to their particular language, and go forth from that place throughout the whole earth.
The more detailed form of MIGRATE (qiān) seems to specifically reference the migration of the Chinese people from the plain of Shinar. It reveals their GREAT WALK from the WEST which eventually STOPPED in the land we today call China. An interesting note, they acknowledge the general region from which they had departed, using the word WEST (xī), which takes us back to the ONE MAN in the garden ENCLOSURE - Adam.
How Did They Know?
The Chinese word shuō helps us to know how the ancient Chinese knew about the pre-Babel history of mankind. The word means to TELL or SPEAK or SAY. It's etymology identifies WORDS from EIGHT ELDERS. I would suggest that would be Noah and his wife, along with his three sons and their wives. They were, after the flood, the oldest (elder) people on the earth. But there's more.
Just in case we're not certain that these eight elders who shared words with the ancient Chinese people were in fact Noah and his family, a word used for HANDING DOWN or PASSING DOWN (y?n) also reveals the source of their knowledge. This word pictures EIGHT WATER PEOPLE! Who could that be, but the eight people who were saved through water (1 Peter 3:20), Noah, his wife, his three sons, and their wives?
Not only was the written syntax of the Chinese language provided by its developers as a means of communication, but it was used as a way to record history. In particular, the history of pre-Babel events were encoded in several images - hidden details of a time long ago. The precision with which these characters agree with the Hebrew Scriptures cannot be a mere coincidence. The ancient Chinese people knew Noah and his family, and received from them the knowledge of what happened prior to the flood. Showing due diligence, the first generation of the Chinese people, as they prepared a style of writing for their descendants, used it as a way to record and preserve the history which had been passed on to them. Amazing, truly amazing!
by William J. Stewart