The Sons of Noah: Genesis 9:18–19

sons of Noah (2)

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1) Gen 9:18–19: These verses represent the final part of the chiasm which recounts the flood (Gen 6:9–9:19). They form the conclusion which mentions Noah and his sons (Cf. Gen 6:9–10).[1]

Here the focus shifts from Noah to his descendants.[2]

Moses wrote, “And it happened that the sons of Noah went out from the ark: Shem and Ham and Japheth. And Ham, he [was the] father of Canaan. These three [were] the sons of Noah, and from these scattered all [the people] of the earth.”

By spreading out across the known world, the descendants of Noah fulfilled the command to be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth (Gen 1:28; Gen 9:1, 7). This passage introduces the ancestor of the nations whom God commanded Moses’ original readers to displace (Gen 10:15–19; Exod 3:8; Deut 9:5).[3]

Canaanites practiced polytheism, child sacrifice, and religious prostitution (Lev 18:24–25; Deut 12:29–31).[4]

The behavior of Noah’s sons foreshadows the relationships between their descendants (Gen 9:20–23; Josh 11:16–20; Josh 16:10; Josh 17:12–13).[5]

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a) Read Gen 9:18–19. How did Noah resemble a second Adam? Why do you think Moses included Canaan in these verses?




Go to Noah Planted a Vineyard (Gen 9:20–21)

[Related posts include The Blessing of Fruitfulness (Gen 1:28); Righteous and Blameless (Gen 6:9–10); A Renewed Mandate (Gen 9:1); Blood for Blood (Gen 9:5–7); Noah Planted a Vineyard (Gen 9:20–21); Ham Dishonors His Father (Gen 9:22–23); A Slave of Slaves (Gen 9:24–25); Blessed Be the God of Shem (Gen 9:26–27); The Death of Noah (Gen 9:28–29); The Descendants of Noah (Gen 10:1); The Descendants of Japheth (Gen 10:2–5); The Descendants of Ham (Gen 10:6–14); The Descendants of Canaan (Gen 10:15–20); The Descendants of Shem (Gen 10:21–31); Seventy Nations (Gen 10:32); Jesus Sends Seventy (Two) (Luke 10:1–2); Obedience in the Lord (Eph 6:1); Ancient Near Eastern Genealogies; and Author and Date of Genesis]

[Click here to go to Chapter 10: Noah Curses Canaan (Gen 9:18–27)]


[1]Wenham, Genesis 1–15, 156.

[2]Waltke and Fredricks, Genesis: A Commentary, 147.

[3]Waltke and Fredricks, Genesis: A Commentary, 147.

[4]John Day, “Canaan, Religion of,” ABD 1:831–7, 833–5.

[5]Wenham, Genesis 1–15, 197.