Monday, June 18, 2012

after the flood

Good evening friends,
After spending all that time in the ark, I'm sure Noah and his family were thrilled to have a little more space. Unfortunately, things didn't go perfectly smoothly after the flood either. In this story we see both Noah and his son Ham acting in less than idea ways. The story of Ham being cursed by his father has been used as a justification for the oppression of Africans and African Americans for much of history. As usual, when we use the Bible for oppression we're not following God's calling. The interesting thing about this passage is that Noah's anger focuses on Ham's son, Canaan, more than on Ham himself. That doesn't really make sense, but often we aren't logical when we're angry. That curse is important as the story progresses because Canaan is the ancestor of the people who inhabited the Promised Land (Canaan) before Israel came into it. Scholars believe this passage was written to reflect and justify Israel's conquest of the land.

God bless,


Genesis 9:18-28
18The sons of Noah who went out of the ark were Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Ham was the father of Canaan. 19These three were the sons of Noah; and from these the whole earth was peopled. 20Noah, a man of the soil, was the first to plant a vineyard. 21He drank some of the wine and became drunk, and he lay uncovered in his tent. 22And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brothers outside. 23Then 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 away, and they did not see their father’s nakedness.

24When Noah awoke from his wine and knew what his youngest son had done to him, 25he said, “Cursed be Canaan; lowest of slaves shall he be to his brothers.” 26He also said, “Blessed by the Lord my God be Shem; and let Canaan be his slave. 27May God make space for Japheth, and let him live in the tents of Shem; and let Canaan be his slave.”
28After the flood Noah lived three hundred fifty years. 29All the days of Noah were nine hundred fifty years; and he died.

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