As this is the final instalment of Noah and the Table of Nations, I just wanted to note how intrigued I was doing research on this subject, and I have in no ways exhausted myself. I plan on going deeper in the near future. I hope you have found this series informative. For me, I have been able to apply the main points of interest in my every day life as they alter my thinking.
Through these three men, Shem, Ham and Japheth, that propagated humanity after the Flood and repopulated the earth, we see that the condition of sin still lived on, not destroyed from the Flood. Ham’s son, Cush, was also a bad seed. He begot Nimrod, which is another infamous name in the Bible. We will look into this further in a later blog. Just to say, Nimrod is responsible for the Tower of Babel and for establishing Babylon.
Noah didn’t just prophesy over Ham, he prophesied over Shem and Japheth. “Blessed be the LORD, the God of Shem! May Canaan be the slave of Shem,” Genesis 10:26. This is the second messianic prophecy in the Old Testament. All Semitic people stem from Shem, and the rest of Genesis really concentrates on them as God sets them apart to start His blessings and salvation upon humanity, because Shem represents the spiritual framework of man. Above all else, God is concerned with the spiritual condition of men. It is the spirit in us that will live into eternity.
After the Flood, Shem occupied most of the Levant. Today Lebanon, Syria, Israel and Jordan comprise this region. Through history, all major religions have been birthed through Shemites. This would include Judaism, Islam and Christianity. Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism are philosophies, not religions.
The blessing over Japheth brings us a glimpse of the rest of humanity, namely Europe. After the Flood the Japhethites occupied modern-day Turkey. Then the spread out into Europe and down through Iraq and India. The name Japheth actually means “enlarge,” and through Japheth, God would expand humanity westward. Western Civilization rose from the Greeks and the Romans and their philosophy, including democracy. Our government today, our eco-socio system, our knowledge in science and mathematics, all stemmed from the line of Japheth.
The second half of the blessing upon Japheth was Noah’s insight to the spiritual blessing Japheth’s descendants would gain through the Semitic people and the future they would share together. We are presently experiencing this is the Age of Grace. We are controlled by the system the Greek began, however, with our love of knowledge. Today, intelligence is paramount. We can really only gain and achieve advancement in society and status with it, along with the money it can bring. The system is upside down and twisted. But one day it will be put straight.
In fact, the Hamitic people have spread in every direction, but over the course of time, lost their land to both the descendants of Shem and Japheth as they moved to the west and to the east and to the south colonizing the Far East, India, and the Americas. Japheth’s line became the best seafarers on the planet through the Norse, the English, the Spanish, the French, the Italians and the Portuguese.
The Intellectual Framework
Keep in mind that Japheth’s line represents the intellectual framework of humanity. Shem’s line represents the spiritual framework of humanity. Ham’s line, then, represents the physical framework of humanity. The wholeness or “oneness” of mankind is only found when all three “branches” (I am thinking of the menorah that represents Jerusalem) come together with harmonic devotion to receive the full blessing of God. All mankind will one day witness this.
One final thing to bear in mind is the priority of the framework. While many scholars would believe that in Genesis 10 Noah blesses his sons based on their birthright, and that they are listed in birth order of Shem, Ham and Japheth, this would be inaccurate based on the details of previous passages in Genesis. Japheth was the oldest, Shem the middle and Ham the youngest child. Why would God list them out-of-order several times?
I believe the answer lies in the importance of each role. The spiritual framework of man is the most important. What we believe, our words, our deeds will carry with us into the future. The physical aspect of man is second priority. What good is it if you are the smartest man on the planet if you cannot sustain yourself? Lastly, the importance of the intellect. That is not to say it is unimportant, it isn’t. But it isn’t the most important side in the framework of man.
Genesis chapter 10 gives us so much insight into the past, the present and the future. The blessings and the closing of the life of Noah are so profound. We are never taught about them and don’t relate to them though they are pertinent to our lives and our future! They are promises of God that we can stand on and be secure of the blessings that are to come! This very fact increases my faith as I see God relate so intimately to His children today as He did in antiquity and trust that His plan is still in action.
Written by Jori Sams
Jori Sams is a Christian author and freelance writer with nearly 2000 published pieces on the Internet, with over 1500 being published by Yahoo. Her books are published through Writeious Books. When she isn’t writing, you can usually find her following the sun…