And he said, blessed be the Lord God of Shem
Shem was blessed before Japheth, because he was the first and principal in advising and conducting the affair before ascribed to them, as Jarchi on ( Genesis 9:23 ) suggests; and though the words are in the form of an ascription of blessedness to God, the fountain of all good, and by whose grace Shem was influenced and enabled to do the good he did, for which the Lord's name was to be praised and blessed; yet it includes the blessing of Shem, and indeed the greatest blessing he could possibly enjoy; for what greater blessing is there, than for a man to have God to be his God? this includes everything, all blessings temporal and spiritual; see ( Psalms 144:15 ) some interpret the God of Shem of Christ, who, according to the human nature, was a descendant of Shem; and according to the divine nature the God of Shem, God over all, blessed for ever, ( Romans 9:4 Romans 9:5 ) .
And Canaan shall be his servant;
the posterity of Canaan be servants to the posterity of Shem: this was fulfilled in the times of Joshua, when the Israelites, who sprung from Shem, conquered the land of Canaan, slew thirty of their kings, and took their cities and possessed them, and made the Gibeonites, one of the states of Canaan, hewers of wood and drawers of water to them, or the most mean and abject servants.