Genesis 9:18-29

Noah's Descendants

18 The sons of Noah who went forth from the ark were 1Shem, Ham, and Japheth. (Ham was the father of Canaan.)
19 These three were the sons of Noah, and 2from these the people of the whole earth were dispersed.[a]
20 Noah began to be a man of the soil, and he planted a vineyard.[b]
21 He drank of the wine and became drunk and lay uncovered in his tent.
22 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father and told his two brothers outside.
23 Then Shem and Japheth took a garment, laid it on both their shoulders, and walked backward and covered the nakedness of their father. Their faces were turned backward, and they did not see their father's nakedness.
24 When Noah awoke from his wine 3and knew what his youngest son had done to him,
25 he said, 4"Cursed be Canaan; 5a servant of servants shall he be to his brothers."
26 He also said, "Blessed be the LORD, the God of Shem; and let Canaan be his servant.
27 May God enlarge Japheth,[c] and let him dwell in the tents of Shem, and let Canaan be his servant."
28 After the flood Noah lived 350 years.
29 All the days of Noah were 950 years, and he died.

Genesis 9:18-29 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO GENESIS 9

In this chapter we have an account of God's blessing Noah and his sons, being just come out of the ark, with a renewal of the blessing of propagating their species, and replenishing the earth, the dominion over the creatures, and a freedom from the fear of them; with liberty to eat flesh, only it must not be eaten with blood; with a providential care and preservation of their lives from men and beasts, by making a law that that man or beast should die that shed man's blood, Ge 9:1-6 and after repeating the blessing of procreation, Ge 9:7 mention is made of a covenant God made with Noah, his sons, and all the creatures, that he would drown the world no more, the token of which should be the rainbow in the cloud, Ge 9:8-17 the names of the sons of Noah are observed, by whom the earth was repeopled, Ge 9:18,19 and seem to be observed for the sake of an event after recorded; Noah having planted a vineyard, and drank too freely of the wine of it, lay down uncovered in his tent, which Ham seeing, told his two brothers of it, who in a very modest manner covered him, Ge 9:20-23 of all which Noah being sensible when he awoke, cursed Canaan the son of Ham, and blessed Shem and Japheth, Ge 9:24-27 and the chapter is concluded with the age and death of Noah, Ge 9:28,29.

Genesis 9:18-29 In-Context

16 When the bow is in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth."
17 God said to Noah, "This is the sign of the covenant that I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth."
18 The sons of Noah who went forth from the ark were Shem, Ham, and Japheth. (Ham was the father of Canaan.)
19 These three were the sons of Noah, and from these the people of the whole earth were dispersed.
20 Noah began to be a man of the soil, and he planted a vineyard.
21 He drank of the wine and became drunk and lay uncovered in his tent.
22 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father and told his two brothers outside.
23 Then Shem and Japheth took a garment, laid it on both their shoulders, and walked backward and covered the nakedness of their father. Their faces were turned backward, and they did not see their father's nakedness.
24 When Noah awoke from his wine and knew what his youngest son had done to him,
25 he said, "Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be to his brothers."
26 He also said, "Blessed be the LORD, the God of Shem; and let Canaan be his servant.
27 May God enlarge Japheth, and let him dwell in the tents of Shem, and let Canaan be his servant."
28 After the flood Noah lived 350 years.
29 All the days of Noah were 950 years, and he died.

Cross References 5

  • 1. Genesis 5:32; Genesis 10:1
  • 2. Genesis 10:32
  • 3. [Habakkuk 2:15]
  • 4. Deuteronomy 27:16
  • 5. Joshua 9:23; Judges 1:28; 1 Kings 9:20, 21

Footnotes 3

  • [a]. Or from these the whole earth was populated
  • [b]. Or Noah, a man of the soil, was the first to plant a vineyard
  • [c]. Japheth sounds like the Hebrew for enlarge
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.