Genesis 9:1-7 . COVENANT.
13. I do set my bow in the cloud--set, that is, constitute or appoint. This common and familiar phenomenon being made the pledge of peace, its appearance when showers began to fall would be welcomed with the liveliest feelings of joy.
20. And Noah . . . planted a vineyard--Noah had been probably bred to the culture of the soil, and resumed that employment on leaving the ark.
21. And he drank of the wine, and was drunken--perhaps at the festivities of the vintage season. This solitary stain on the character of so eminently pious a man must, it is believed, have been the result of age or inadvertency.
24. This incident could scarcely have happened till twenty years after the flood; for Canaan, whose conduct was more offensive than that even of his father, was not born till after that event. It is probable that there is a long interval included between these verses and that this prophecy, like that of Jacob on his sons, was not uttered till near the close of Noah's life when the prophetic spirit came upon him; this presumption is strengthened by the mention of his death immediately after.
25. Cursed be Canaan--This doom has been fulfilled in the destruction of the Canaanites--in the degradation of Egypt and the slavery of the Africans, the descendants of Ham.
26. Blessed be the Lord God of Shem--rather, "Blessed of Jehovah, my God, be Shem,"--an intimation that the descendants of Shem should be peculiarly honored in the service of the true God, His Church being for ages established among them (the Jews), and of them, concerning the flesh, Christ came. They got possession of Canaan, the people of that land being made their "servants" either by conquest, or, like the Gibeonites, by submission [ Joshua 9:25 ].
27. God shall enlarge Japheth--pointing to a vast increase in posterity and possessions. Accordingly his descendants have been the most active and enterprising, spread over the best and largest portion of the world, all Europe and a considerable part of Asia.
he shall dwell in the tents of Shem--a prophecy being fulfilled at the present day, as in India British Government is established and the Anglo-Saxons being in the ascendancy from Europe to India, from India over the American continent. What a wonderful prophecy in a few verses ( Isaiah 46:10 , 1 Peter 1:25 )!