101-109-Genesis Part 1 Chapter 9
God blesses Noah, and grants flesh for food
In verses one through three God blesses Noah and his sons. We receive the blessing of God when we do well in the purpose and will of God. Upon God we all depend and we should offer our praise and thankfulness. God told Noah and his son to be fruitful and multiply repopulating the earth. In verse two God grants a partial return of man’s dominion over the animals. Prior to the fall the animals served man freely, now God has put in them a fear of man. Now the animals would serve man freely but in dread of him. Also the birds of the air and the fish of the sea are delivered into the hand of man, as the Psalmist remarked in Psalms 8:6-8, “You make him to rule over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet, All sheep and oxen, And also the beasts of the field, The birds of the heavens and the fish of the sea, Whatever passes through the paths of the seas.” In verse three God gives the animals for food as he had the plants. Today we see this promise fulfilled across the face of the earth. It was not God’s intention that man should abuse the animals or treat them in a cruel manner. Neither was man to be gluttons in his eating the animals. Man is not to pain the animals needlessly while they live or in the manner we take their live.
Blood, and murder forbidden
In verse four man is forbidden to eat flesh that has its life still in it, or its blood. Before an animal is eaten it must be properly killed. Blood is the lifeline of life in a creature, rather it be man or beast. Blood is considered sacred and it is the shedding of blood that is used for the atonement of man’s sin. It is the unblemished blood of Jesus that was shed for the atonement of all the sin of man. Eating flesh while its life blood still flows in its veins would devalue the atoning power of blood. It would also be considered cruel and inhuman to needlessly torture an animal in this way.
And the Jewish writers generally interpret this of the flesh of a creature taken from it alive, which, they say, is the seventh precept given to the sons of Noah, over and above the six which the sons of Adam were bound to observe, and they are these;
- Idolatry is forbidden.
- Blasphemy is forbidden
- The shedding of blood, or murder is forbidden.
- Uncleanness or unjust carnal copulations is forbidden.
- Rapine or robbery is forbidden.
- The administration of justice to malefactors is required.
- The eating of any member or flesh of a creature while alive is forbidden.
In verse six God forbids the taking away of a man’s own life or the life of a fellow man. Man is created in the image of God and our lives belong to Him. We are not to give up our own life or the life of others unless it pleases God to do so. Man himself is a creature of God’s creation and belongs to God. The life of a man who commits murder is required of God and in either this world or the next God will pass his judgment on the murderer. God has elected ministers that are to protect the innocent. They are terror to the evil doers and their sword does not swing in vain. (Romans 13:4)
God’s covenant by the rainbow
In verses eight through seventeen God establishes His covenant with Noah and his sons. The old world was destroyed in a monument to God’s justice the new world to this present time in a monument to God’s mercy. In verse eleven God’s promises that never again will he destroy the world with a flood. We are to be aware; as sin drowned the old world the sin of this day shall burn the new world in fire. The seal of this covenant is the rainbow which shines across the heavens. The rainbow appears when we have the most fear of a prevailing rain. It is then God shows His seal of His promise. The thicker the cloud the thicker the rainbow and the greater our afflictions the more God’s grace abounds. A rainbow is the reflection of light shining through the drops of rain. All the glory of this covenant God made with Noah are derived from Christ the light of righteousness. He will shed His glory on the tears of the saints. God looks down at the rainbow and remembers His covenant with man and so should we in thankfulness.
Noah plants a vineyard, is drunken and mocked by Ham
In verses eighteen through twenty three Noah plants a vineyard as he was a man of the soil and cultivated the ground. When Noah drank of the wine from his vineyard he became drunk and laid naked in his tent. Ham Noah’s son went into his father’s tent and saw Noah laying naked in his drunkenness. Ham is said by many writers to be a wicked man, immodest, and a profligate creature. Berosus makes him a magician, and to be the same with Zoroast or Zoroastres, and speaks of him as the public corrupter of mankind. Ham taught men to live as before the flood, to lie with mothers, sisters, daughters, males and brutes, and creatures of all sorts. That Ham actually did so himself, and therefore was cast out by his father Noah. Ham went out after pleasing himself and told his brothers. (See Habakkuk 2:15) Ham in a wanton, ludicrous, and scoffing manner related what he had seen to his brothers. It is not known what Ham’s son Canaan had done to Noah but it is sure that something happened as we read in verse 24,” When Noah awoke from his wine, he knew what his youngest son had done to him.”
Noah curses Canaan, blesses Shem, prays for Japheth, His death
In verses twenty four through twenty nine Noah awoke from his drunkenness. Being aware of what had happened Noah immediately cursed Canaan for his part of it. Canaan was to be the lowest of slaves even unto his brethren. This curse certainly plays out in later years when the Israelites had many victories over Canaan and put many to the sword forcing them to pay tribute. The continent of Africa is populated most by the descendants of Ham who have lived in slavery and impoverishment throughout history. In verse twenty six Noah bless Shem. From Shem the church of God was built. From Shem came the Jewish people and for a long time they were the only people that worshiped God. Jesus Christ, the Son of God, descended from Shem. Noah also blessed Japheth and said for him to share the tents of Shem. Japheth was the father of gentile nations and when the Jew rejected Jesus as the Messiah the gospel was given to the gentile nations.